You know how there are various funny websites making fun of numerous
English product translations to Chinese? For example, Coca Cola comes
out "happiness in the mouth" as its literal translation. I sometimes
think it helps fuel our distrust or timidity over these alien Chinese
and their weird language and their body lotion translated as "imposing
lavish experience focus and well-being for your dermis." They’re weird,
I was driving the other day and one of
those local radio station vans passed me. You know, the ones with the
KROCK 100 "all the hits fit to play" or WLOVE 103 "We put your groove
on french toast" or some such nonsense. Well, I saw the following, ONDA
94 "Toca lo que Pega" or literally: WAVE 94 "(It) plays that which
sticks". I swear I almost had an accident. Now, comeon, Spanish isn’t
that different from English, but you’d be amazed how much goes into a
translation to make it palatable to its audience. For example, if I was
to translate ONDA 94’s slogan to English, I’d just say, ONDA 94 "We
play the hits", not "The hits are played" or "We only play what sticks"
neither of which actually capture the exact phrase in Spanish.
Spanish, I might come up with the following: ONDA94, "Tocamos los
grandes exitos" which means "We play the greatest hits." It’s simpler,
more literal. But for some reason, "Toca lo que pega" has more
immediacy, more puissance. It sounds hipper, more local, less about
waiting for something to be a hit and then playing it like a follower.
"Toca lo que pega" connotes leadership. It makes me think that they
know what holds up, what people like, and they play it because they
In Spanish I instantly understand the phrase "Toca lo que pega" but when put to translating it, I have to think about it a bit.
Anyway, back to sticking to my popular tunes of "prevailing essense" or something.