Wednesday, December 11, 2013

A guy at the Mandala funeral service pretended to know and use sign language

I know that I should not laugh at this story, but I can't stop laughing.

This guy (to the right) was hired to listen to all the speeches being made at the Mandala funeral service and to send out the words via sign language, on world-wide TV, as the speakers spoke.


There was just one problem: he doesn't know sign language.  He just made up the signs as he went along.  This happened during the entire ceremony.  There was this unqualified guy standing next to the President of the United States pretending to translate what Obama was saying.

It was such a crazy thing to do that I can stop laughing!  Why did this nutty (crazy) guy do this?! He was just making up all the signs and the people on stage were taking him seriously! What he did was terrible, but this was so funny to me.

Here is an article about this:

http://news.yahoo.com/outrage-over-sign-language-interpreter-madiba-memorial-082056835.html

Vocabulary to help you understand the article:

outrage - extreme anger

interpreter - usually someone who translates from one language to another; in this case he was supposed to be translating words into sign language using his hands

Madiba memorial - Nelson Mandela was also known as Madiba. The memorial service was an event to remember the good things he did.

to be inspired - to be influenced and motivated by something

fake - not real

disgraceful - embarrassing, somehting a person should feel shame over

the hand movements the interpreter was using was not recognizable - there's a grammar mistake here; this should be: the hand movements the interpreter was using were not recognizable 

repetitive - over and over

an icon - in this case, someone very famous

rubbish - garbage, nonsense

a mockery of our profession - making a joke of being a sign-language translator, making the job seem ridiculous

ANC - African National Congress (the political party that runs South Africa)

has contacted government spokesperson for comment and is awaiting response. - more bad grammar here (maybe the sign language guy also wrote this article! :P) It should say: has contacted a government spokesperson for comment and is awaiting a response. ('for comment' is an idiom and doesn't need the article 'a')

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