【恒大英萃】圣诞节提早到 好消息来得快

2018-12-07 03:21:28  阅读 18 次 评论 0 条

  又到圣诞!游走各大商场,充耳皆是洗脑式的圣诞歌曲,倒不如趁机学学英语。识学,当然不止用于圣诞节的用语吧。

  「Tis the season to be jolly, fa la la la la, la la la la」 来自《Deck the Halls》(直译︰装饰大厅),tis是古语的It is,jolly多用于口语,解极度愉快,整句说话即是It is the time of year to be happy(这是个欢欣的季节)。

  Christmas came early (this year)! 什幺?圣诞节不是永远在12月25号?别紧张,今年也是。这说法表面是「圣诞节早来了」,实以这良辰佳节比喻好消息比预期早来︰Did you know that we all have just got a handsome raise? Christmas came early this year!(今年公司慷慨解囊,提早给我们大幅加薪,预早过肥年了。)

  那说Christmas comes but once a year不就是多余?非也。正因这普天同庆的节日一年一度,更要珍而重之。这多用于劝慰他人且管今朝乐、莫理他日愁︰ Don't hold back on the buffet! Christmas comes but once a year.(来得享受自助餐就开怀大吃吧,肥?明天才减。)

  相反地,这说法亦可用以惋惜错过良机︰Just got a winner for the biggest lottery in town. Christmas comes but once a year! Better luck next year!(全城最高奖金的彩票已名花有主,苏州过后冇艇搭,明年请早吧。)

  火鸡想圣诞 砸自己只脚

  圣诞大餐少不了肥大圆润的火鸡(turkey)。火鸡们每年一度面临大肆屠宰绝非乐事,谚语 like turkeys voting for Christmas中的火鸡难道傻的吗?投票希望圣诞来临不就是找死?对,牠们的傻就是这谚语的真谛,表示搬石头砸自己的脚︰Students asking their school to raise the tuition fee would be like turkeys voting for Christmas!(学生们不会傻得希望学校增加学费吧,受害者不就是自己吗?)

  除了火鸡,西方圣诞大餐亦多见充满乾果的蒸熟圣诞布丁(Christmas pudding),这类热食布丁颜色偏深、口感厚重,表面黑黑实实的,卖相并非相当吸引,但未亲口品嚐又怎能持平?有云︰The proof of the pudding is in the eating,正正喻人别只凭表象或理论去评价,凡事需亲身体验︰The new boss is supposed to be the solution to all our problems, but the proof of the pudding is in the eating. (新官上任,救星与否,待行动来证明。)

  香港没有白色飘雪圣诞,但别总为家人朋友四处张罗礼物而be snowed under哦。这说法并非如电影中白雪皑皑的梦幻场境,而是解应接不暇、忙得不可开交。

  正所谓「物轻情意重」(Good things come in small packages),送礼讲求心意,don't get your tinsel in a tangle! Tinsel是由金属丝製成闪闪发光的装饰物,in a tangle即是乱成一团,这说法原是告诫在拆下圣诞树装饰时,当心别让彩色金属丝带缠结一团,现可广作劝人别为琐事烦恼︰It's only a tiny little scratch on your phone. Don't get your tinsel in a tangle! (少少「爆芒」而已,别发火。)

  送礼最怕不合别人心意,更怕对方嫌三嫌四。遇到如此忘恩者,不妨以德报怨,多赠句谚语︰Don't look a gift house in the mouth! 这谚语源于古人买卖马匹时会打开马嘴,从牙齿发育和磨损情况来判断马匹年龄。人家送你匹马,你却急不及待掰开马嘴以辨其价值,这说法就是叫人别挑剔礼物。

  当然,如果对方的反应真叫你气顶,忍无可忍就将之off your Christmas card list! 将之从送赠圣诞卡名单除名,不就是unfriend他吧。

  什幺贵重礼物、什幺有趣贴图,还不比亲口说句「圣诞快乐」来得珍贵。说惯了Merry Christmas,不妨来句Happy Holly Days搞搞新意思。Holly是冬青树,就是常出现在圣诞卡背景,那些绿油油叶子衬上鲜红色浆果的常绿植物。Holly days唸起来不亦是人见人爱的holidays(假期)吗?因此Happy Holly days亦可作圣诞祝福语。

  加强版亦可以Happy Holly Jolly Days出场,holly跟jolly押韵,说起来形神俱备,气势不就是比说三次圣诞快乐更强吗?

  要不落俗套?赠一句Have you been naughty or nice this year?(你今年乖不乖哦?)这说法源于圣诞歌《Santa Claus is coming to town》一节︰ He's making a list and checking it twice; Gonna find out who is naught and nice. 不少父母就是全年挟持「圣诞老人只给乖宝贝礼物」之名去利诱小朋友听教听话。当然,Have you been naughty or nice this year? 不只跟小孩说哦,说时抛个媚眼、语带轻佻,说不定叫一向心心眼的男神、女神精神为之一振。

   ■锺可盈博士 香港恒生大学英文学系高级讲师

  隔星期五见报

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