Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Sticky rice, sticky wicket

Today's Boston Globe has an editorial following up on this story from a few weeks ago (by Frank Phillips) on the problems of translating candidate names into Chinese characters on multilingual ballots:
Mitt Romney could be read as Sticky or Uncooked Rice, Fred Thompson as Virtue Soup, and Tom Menino? Rainbow farmer -- or worse. That's one translation of their names into Chinese, according to Secretary of State William F. Galvin, and if the US Justice Department's voting rights division has its way, that is how they could appear on many Boston ballots in 2008.
The Globe does not mention that "sticky rice" has a specific meaning in the bedroom as well as the kitchen. From Urban Dictionary: "a homosexual Asian male who is sexually attracted exclusively to other homosexual Asian males." I think Romney would rather be called a rainbow farmer, though that term also has Judy Garland connotations.

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