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You are a peasant if you don't smoke Furongwang

Well, I've been doing all sorts of stuff at work, but what I spent most of today working on was translating the storyboards for this advertisement we're doing for Furongwang cigarettes. It's amazing, I have always believed that advertisements are bullshit, but now that I am taking a hand in producing them for cigarette companies, I really see that in fact they are total bullshit. But man, do I want to start smoking Furongwang...

Mou took me to a meeting with their company on Tuesday. She said that it was for me to learn something, but I think it probably had something more to do with her liking to have handsome foreign boys accompany her on business events. We sat on one side of a conference table in a dimly lit room (we turned the lights off so we could show our presentation), and the cigarette guys sat on the other side, chainsmoking Furongwang cigarettes. It was hypnotizing. The boss kept smoking these things, kind of gazing off into the distance, and telling us about the kind of a man who smokes Furongwang. Furongwang is not just a flagrant symbol of wealth and status. It shows the successful character of a scholarly aristocrat, a man whose magnanimity and refined bearing show through his modesty.

Mou's concept presentation was that there would be one of these such men playing a game of Go against himself, and that his refinement would be shown through the inner struggle and final victory of the game. The cigarette guys didn't like the idea of Go, they thought it was too cliche. In the storyboard I translated today, he played chess.

I produced a perfectly horrible translation of the storyboard for the second concept, which Mou called a "sediment" piece. This is one of these Chinese words which does not translate well. Unfortunately it was used in all of the catch phrases and captions throughout the piece, and finally I lamely decided to translate it as "gain." I worked through my translation a few times until I finally decided that it might be passed off as something written by a native English speaker. I gave both versions to Mou, who will send it to a few directors to see what they think.

I can only hope that my efforts spawn a whole new generation of lung cancer related deaths.

And now... the weekend!!!


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