Slide-rule

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undern

Senior Member
Italy, Italian
Hi everyone, I have run into a really tricky passage I have to translate.
To make it clear: We are in the 30s, Hollywood. Wasserman is the head of MCA, a powerful agency; Harry Cohn is Columbia Picture's president.
Here's the passage:

While MCA showed the way – itself becoming one the first such conglomerates – none of those running these corporate empires would ever be able to match Wasserman's instinct. So it was that gradually the wire leading to Harry Cohn's ass came to be replaced by the humble slide-rule.

I don't understand what "the wire leading to someone's ass" means, and I wonder if the slide-rule is something used to check payments, etc.
Thanks everyone!
 
  • Roberto1976

    Senior Member
    Italy, Italian
    Hi everyone, I have run into a really tricky passage I have to translate.
    To make it clear: We are in the 30s, Hollywood. Wasserman is the head of MCA, a powerful agency; Harry Cohn is Columbia Picture's president.
    Here's the passage:

    While MCA showed the way – itself becoming one the first such conglomerates – none of those running these corporate empires would ever be able to match Wasserman's instinct. So it was that gradually the wire leading to Harry Cohn's ass came to be replaced by the humble slide-rule.

    I don't understand what "the wire leading to someone's ass" means, and I wonder if the slide-rule is something used to check payments, etc.
    Thanks everyone!
    Nella mia ignoranza, questo passaggio lo interpreto così:

    lo slide-rule è il regolo calcolatore (ma io tradurrei forse "pallottoliere"). Insomma, qualunque cosa stessero facendo, da un certo punto in poi all'intuito geniale di Wasserman si sostituisce poi la più cauta mentalità ragionieristica.

    Per il "wire", direi che (fuor di metafora) l'idea sia che, fino a un certo punto, le idee di Wasserman (la cui reputaz. era così buona e di cui ci si fidava tanto) venissero direttamente comunicate e implementate. Insomma, secondo la metafora le idee e i piani di Wasserman venivano diffusi direttamente tramite un cavo (tefeonico/telegrafico) inserito nel suo derrière...

    R. :)
     
    Last edited:

    undern

    Senior Member
    Italy, Italian
    They're rivals. One is the head of the MCA, the other of the Columbia Pictures...
     
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