16th June 2013, 5:57 PM
To come off a banana boat (or something like that)
A bilingual friend translated this as 'muz gemisyle falan gelmiş' but it is an idiom for the history of which see:-
It does not mean what my friend translated it as. Unfortunately, all my Turkish contacts are incommunicado, whether because there is a blackout on some channels of the media or, more likely, they are tired out because they are actively involved in demonstrations in Istanbul, where they live or are based. The phrase 'to come off a banana boat' now means 'to be a country bumpkin as opposed to a posh, sophisticated city dweller'. I want the best Turkish colloquial idiom for 'he was a country bumpkin/ village boy. Perhaps andavallı or hödök or kıro might do or the idiom 'Ağzı süt kokmak' but I don't really know.
The English translation of the original is, if it helps, 'This guy--the same bloke who asked my then husband if he read books--came from Anatolia or some such place-- to work in my husband's kebab shop. He came in a banana boat or something of the like' so the translation must fit in that context.
In Turkish it is :- ''Bu çocuk, o zamanki kocama kitap okuyup okumadığını sormuştu, Anadolu'dan ya da benzer bir memleketten. Eski kocamın kebap dükkanında çalışıyordu. Muz gemisiyle falan gelmiş."
17th June 2013, 2:10 PM
Re: To come off a banana boat (or something like that)
Though there's nothing wrong with being a village boy, I guess we're talking about the attitude those posh, sophisticated city dwellers have against villagers. Fair enough. If we are to be explicitly, ruthlessly derogatory, here's my attempt:
- Şu eleman, -hani eski kocama kitap okuyup okumadığını soran adam var ya, işte o- Anadolu'dan mı, nereden gelmiş, kocamın kebapçı dükkanında çalışmaya. Sığır gibi bir herif; dağdan mı inmiş, nedir...
"Dağdan inmek" or "mağaradan gelmek" are pretty serviceable when what you're looking for is a good insult towards people's perceived lack of urban manners or simply manners in general. Terms such as "sığır/ayı/öküz gibi" are also available when looking down upon people with a distinct lack of manners is the main concern.
I used "eski kocam" instead of "o zamanki kocam" simply because, well...people over here usually do not prefer boasting multiple marriages terminated in the past, one way or another. If the person in question is comfortable enough to talk about a specific spouse, then "o zamanki kocam" will be a better translation for "then husband".