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【中英文】问得好,乔德黑德 Good Question, Chowderhead


发布日期:3/22/2020 9:50:50 PM
 问得好,乔德黑德

Good Question, Chowderhead

My name is Chelsea Chowderhead. A chowder2) is a stew3) made out of thick soup. My father says that our early ancestors may have invented chowder. I wonder if our early ancestors got made fun of all the time, too. For me, the last name teasing4) began as soon as I started school. So when my family moved to South Carolina, I decided that it was my chance for a fresh start. I asked my dad if I could change my name.

我叫切尔西·乔德黑德(译者注:chowderhead直译为"杂烩头",引申义为"傻瓜")。"乔德"(chowder)是一种用文火炖成的海鲜杂烩浓汤。爸爸说,可能是我们的祖先发明了这种海鲜杂烩浓汤吧。我想知道,祖先们是不是也一直被别人寻开心呢?我呢,从上学的那天起,就开始遭到"姓名歧视"了。因此,当我们举家搬迁到南卡罗来纳州时,我下定决心要抓住这个迎来全新开始的大好机会。于是我问爸爸,我可不可以改个名字。

"But the Chowderhead name has a long history—" Dad started.

"可是乔德黑德这个姓氏有悠久的历史——"爸爸又开始了。

"I know, I know. We were makers of thick soups or stews."

"我知道,我知道,我们是做浓汤或者炖菜的。"


"Why do you want to change it?" He asked. My dad always asks lots of questions.

"你为什么想要改名字呢?"爸爸问。他总是有问不完的问题。

I didn't want to hurt his feelings, but I didn't want to go through another school year as a Chowderhead, either. "I get teased all the time. Even a compliment like 'Good idea, Chowderhead' sounds mean."

我不想让他伤心,但我也无法忍受再被人叫整整一学年的"傻瓜"了。"我一直都被别人取笑,哪怕是一句称赞,像是'好主意,乔德黑德',听起来都让人觉得不舒服。"


"I know it's not always easy being a Chowderhead," said Dad. "I've been a Chowderhead my whole life, and I've been teased a lot. But you shouldn't change who you are. Let people get to know you first and your name later."

"我知道作为乔德黑德家族的一员,有时候不是那么容易,"爸爸说,"我都姓了一辈子乔德黑德了,我也受到了很多嘲弄。但是你不应该因此而改变自己。你要让别人先了解你,然后才是你的名字。"

"How can people get to know me before they know my name?" I asked.

"别人怎么会在知道我叫什么名字之前就了解我呢?"我问。

He said, "Ask good questions."

他说:"问些好问题。"

I looked at him blankly. He went on, "When you meet someone new, ask them a question. It can't be a mean question, and it has to be something that you're really curious about. Once people start talking about themselves, they don't judge you. They're just happy that someone is interested in what they have to say."

我一脸茫然地看着他。他接着说:"当你结识新朋友的时候,问他们一个问题,但是不要问那种尖酸刻薄的问题,这个问题必须是你确实感到好奇的。一旦人们开始谈论他们自己,就不会去对你品头论足了。他们只会觉得开心,因为有人对他们要说的内容感兴趣。"


Two days later I headed to my new school for the first day of class. As soon as I got to my classroom, a girl named Claire introduced herself. I noticed that Claire was wearing pretty woven bracelets5). I asked her where she got them. Her face lit up, and she explained that she made them herself. She'd gotten a bracelet-making kit for her birthday, and these were her first try. She offered to make me one.

两天后是开学的第一天,我去新学校上课。我一进教室,一个叫克莱尔的女生就对我做起了自我介绍。我注意到克莱尔戴着一条漂亮的编织手链,便问她在哪儿买的。她的脸立刻神采飞扬起来,说这是她自己做的。她过生日的时候,收到了一套自制手链的工具,而这个手链是她的处女作。她还说要给我也编一条手链。

By lunch, I'd talked to lots of people and was getting the hang of6) finding the right question. But there were two kids, twin brothers, who didn't seem to talk to anyone but each other. When they looked at me, I felt as if they already knew that I was a Chowderhead. Still, my dad's advice had worked out well, so I decided to give it one more try. I asked Claire if we should sit with the twins. She looked a little surprised, but shrugged her shoulders and followed me.

中午吃饭之前,我已经和很多人都聊过天了,也开始慢慢掌握了找到"问正确问题"的窍门。不过有两个小孩,他们是一对双胞胎兄弟,好像除了跟彼此聊天外,都不和别人讲话。而他们看着我的样子,让我觉得他们好像已经知道我姓什么了。尽管如此,鉴于爸爸的建议收效还不错,所以我决定再试一次。我问克莱尔要不要跟这对双胞胎兄弟坐在一起。她看起来有一点惊讶,不过还是耸了耸肩,跟着我走了过去。

"Do you mind if we sit with you?" I asked. The twins stared at us. I sat down and opened my milk. No one said anything. I realized that if the twins never said anything, I'd never think of a question. Claire didn't say anything, either. I looked at their lunches for some kind of clue and noticed that the lunchboxes were identical7). That's when it came to me.

"你们介意我们坐在旁边吗?"我问。双胞胎兄弟瞪着我们没吭声。我坐下来,打开牛奶盒。没有人开口说话。我意识到如果这对双胞胎兄弟一直什么都不说,那我就永远也想不出个问题来。克莱尔也不说话。我看了看他们的午餐,想找点话题线索之类的,然后我发现他们的餐盒一模一样。我的灵感来了。

"What's it like being a twin?" I asked.

"做双胞胎是什么感觉呢?"

The twins looked astonished. Then they both started talking at the same time.

兄弟俩看上去吓了一跳,接着同时开口说了起来。

"No one has ever asked us that!" one said.

"从来没有人问过我们这个问题。"其中一个说。

"Most of the time it's good," the other said. It turns out that being a twin is as complicated as being a Chowderhead. When you're a twin you always have someone to talk to and have lunch with, but people think that you're exactly alike.

"大部分时间还好。"另一个说。原来做双胞胎就像做乔德黑德家的后人一样复杂。如果你是双胞胎当中的一个,那么永远都会有人陪你说话,陪你吃午饭,但是人们都会觉得你们俩是完全一模一样的。

In no time at all we were laughing and talking. Then one of the brothers said, "I'm Nicholas, and this is my brother, Nathaniel. What's your name?"

我们很快就变得有说有笑了。然后兄弟当中的一个说:"我叫尼古拉斯,这是我弟弟,纳撒尼尔。你叫什么呢?"

I gulped8), took a deep breath, and said, "I'm Chelsea Chowderhead."

我咽了咽口水,深吸了一口气,说:"我叫切尔西·乔德黑德。"

"Chowder? Like the soup?" asked Nathaniel.

"海鲜杂烩浓汤?就像汤一样的?"纳撒尼尔问道。

"Yes," I replied, looking down and blushing. "Like a thick soup or stew."

"是的,"我回答说,低着头,脸涨得通红,"像是浓汤或者炖菜之类的。"


"Hey, cool. Do you and Claire want to come over after school and play basketball with us?" Nathaniel asked.

"嘿,很酷嘛。你和克莱尔想不想放学后过来跟我们一起打篮球呢?"纳撒尼尔问道。

"I'd love to," I said.

"我很乐意。"我说。

"Me too," Claire agreed.

"我也愿意。"克莱尔表示同意。

And that is how I learned to ask good questions and became friends with Nicholas and Nathaniel Noodlenoggin.

而这就是我如何学会提出好问题,又是怎样和尼古拉斯·努德诺金(译者注:Noodlenoggin,直译为"面条脑袋")与纳撒尼尔·努德诺金成为朋友的。Melissa Herr/文

1. chowderhead[&#712;t&#643;a&#650;d&#601;(r)hed] n. <美口> 笨蛋,傻瓜,蠢人

2. chowder [&#712;t&#643;a&#650;d&#601;(r)] n. <美> 海鲜杂烩浓汤(用鱼或蛤和熏肉加洋葱及其他蔬菜制成)

3. stew [stju:] n. 炖(或煨、焖)的食物(尤指与蔬菜一起炖的肉或鱼)

4. tease [ti&#720;z] v. 戏弄,逗弄;取笑

5. bracelet [&#712;bre&#618;sl&#601;t] n. 手镯,臂镯

6. get the hang of: <口> 掌握……的窍门,熟悉……的用法(或做法);懂得……的意义

7. identical [a&#618;&#712;dent&#618;k(&#601;)l] adj. (完全)相同的,一模一样的


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