Monday, July 14, 2008


Just thought I'd briefly share some of the Jinglish I've seen on this trip. Jinglish is one name for Japanese English, also known as Engrish, Japlish, Janglish, etc. I like the word Jinglish, because most of the English is used in advertising, and they really don't care what it means, just that it looks good or sounds good, like a jingle. There's a whole website dedicated to this stuff,, and the stuff has me rolling on the floor.

This is the name of a clothing store, for the ultimate in no-name fashions.

For that coffee that you miss from your time in the hoosegow.
I don't know if I want to put my hard earned cash in a soft bank. (It's a cell phone store.)

Mmmm, this organic led is so much better than those Chinese toys I've been eating.

When you need a place to rant and rave. (Japanese is written and printed with all the words run together, no space in between words [really!], so the sign maker was having a little problem with the concept.)

Nobody doesn't like Sara's lies.

An example of a local "green" business.
Try to be careful walking on the train tracks.

Hmm, it does smell a little like that Motel 6 carpet.

Sign over a urinal. This one is not really bad english, but it does reveal a cultural difference that you might not have been aware of.

You can make your own Jinglish, too by using a computer program to translate something into Japanese, then cut and paste the Japanese and go the other way. can tell you how, but really it's much more fun to walk down the street and see a billboard 20 feet high with something like:

But the computer translation can be fun. For example, I started with:
"Let's go dow the street and get a bite to eat."
Then I ended up with:
"It probably will keep tracing sort, you bite and you obtain in order to eat the scar." WTF?
So who really uses a computer program? Some of the hundred or so proposals I had to edit for the INSEA conference. e.g. "Nowadays, I contemplate that it is indispensable to collaborate art museums
and school on art appreciation activities in consideration of mold education."
I just got another hopeless cause to translate the computer translation. "I share information and inflect, and, in the place where a member of nurse/care collaborates, help nursing/care practice continuously, and it is important to carry out each role responsibly."


Anonymous said...

OLED or "Organic light emitting diode" is an emerging display technology. The term is scientific and used worldwide. Not Jinglish.

Jon Aull said...

Yes, that one was a bit of a stretch, since it would have been misspelled, also. When I wrote this a couple of years ago, I hadn't heard of that technology, which is now used in tv screens, etc. Thanks for your comment.