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「服務他人是你住地球應該付出的租金。」– 穆罕默德‧阿里 (拳擊手)
"Service to others is the rent you pay for your room here on earth." -- Muhammad Ali, Boxer
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天天閱讀英語島,在這裡感知世界,汲取英文的養分。
 
很多人覺得美式幽默很難懂。要懂美式幽默不妨從脫口秀下手。美國喜劇演員兼脫口秀主持人 Jimmy Kimmel(吉米金莫),常在節目中針砭時事,風趣又辛辣。一起來讀一段談話,領會美式英語的幽默感。
進入本文前,想想以下單字英文怎麼說: (A) 過譽了的 (B) 平庸 (C) 黯淡的

反話式幽默

梅莉史翠普是資深實力派電影演員,當她批評川普的侮辱言詞、煽動暴力、排斥移民,川普批評她是"one of the most (A) over-rated actresses in Hollywood"(好 萊塢最被過譽的女演員之一)。吉米金莫主持今年奧斯 卡頒獎典禮時,以反話凸顯川普發言的不合理。

"We are here tonight to honor great actors but we're also here to honor the actors who seem great, but actually really aren't. And of all the "great actors" here in Hollywood, one in particular has stood the test of time for her many uninspiring and overrated performances.

「我們齊聚一堂向優秀的演員致敬,也向看似優秀,實則不優秀的演員致敬。好萊塢所有優秀演員中,有一位平淡、被過譽的演出,特別經得起時間考驗。

 

"May I say, from her (B) mediocre early work in The Deer Hunter and Out of Africa to her underwhelming performances in Kramer vs. Kramer and Sophie's Choice, Meryl Streep has (1) phoned it in for over 50 films over the course of her (C) lackluster career. This is Meryl's 20th Oscar nomination…"

容我這麼說,從她早期平庸的作品越戰獵鹿人、遠 離非洲,到未獲熱烈反響的克拉瑪對克拉瑪、蘇菲亞的選擇,梅莉史翠普黯淡的職業生涯中,敷衍了事地演出超過五十部電影。這是她第二十次被奧斯卡提名。」

 

狂想式幽默

自川普當選,白人至上主義就有浮上檯面跡象,上周末,支持白人至上者與反對者在維吉尼亞州的抗議活動中發生致死衝突,川普再度不當回應,吉米金莫在節目裡呼籲川普選民,正視川普不適任的事實。嘲諷不可能讓對方聽進去,他這樣說:

"I want to speak to those of you who voted for Donald Trump. And first of all, I want to say I get it. I actually do. You're unhappy with the way things were going. You wanted someone to come in and shake things up. You didn't want (2) business as usual… These candidates make a lot of promises that go nowhere. It happens over and over again. And you're sick of it."

" …Sometimes he can be funny. He rips into his opponents in a way politicians never do, have never done before."

"This guy's different and that's what I want. Different. Let's (3) roll the dice, let's get him in there, have him run the country like a business…"

「我想對投給唐納川普的各位說說話。首先我想說的是,我理解,我真的理解。你對現況不滿,想要有人打破現有秩序,不想一切照舊…候選人老開空頭支票,你受夠了。」

「…他(川普)有時講話也挺好笑,抨擊人的方式又不像其他政客。」

「這傢伙不一樣,這就是我想要的。賭一把,把他送 進白宮,用經營企業的方式經營國家⋯⋯。」

 

講到這,吉米金莫逐一指出川普上任後種種不當舉動,接著說:

"…the truth is deep down inside you know you made a mistake. You know you picked the wrong guy. And it isn't getting better. It's getting worse."

「事實是,在內心深處你知道自己錯了,選了錯 的人,事情沒變好,反而更糟。」

 

"Instead of president we make Donald Trump king. Okay? We make him the first king of America. Think about it. England has a queen. She lives in a palace. Everyone makes a big deal when she shows up. She has no power at all... The queen could be completely bonkers, it would make no difference at all. She'd still be queen, it would still be fine."

「不如我們讓川普別當總統,當國王吧?我們可以讓他擔任美國第一任國王。想想看,英國有女王,住宮殿,露面的時候,每個人都很慎重,但她手中完全沒有權力⋯就算女王瘋了也沒差,她還是女王,一切都會很好。」

 

90%同理心,但10%的幽默, 足以顯出現況的荒謬了。

 

延伸片語

1. Phone it in 敷衍了事

Some of the staff were just phoning it in.
有些工作人員當時只是在敷衍。

 

2. Business as usual 一切照舊

A: How are things at the office?
辦公室裡情況如何?

B: Business as usual. Nothing exciting.
一切照舊,沒什麼令人興奮的事。

 

3. Roll the dice 原意擲骰子,引申為賭一把或孤注一擲

He decided to roll the dice with the investment.
他決定在這項投資上賭一把。


文/Nikki Lu

本文收錄於英語島English Island 2017年10月號
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