And now from Electrolux…

I don’t know what happened to the Cease and Desist letter from the Electrolux Company. They were not amused. The vacuum in this story is the one my mother had when I was a little boy. I think the model was the most popular at that time. No wheels, it had skids. If you’re old enough, you probably remember it.

That’s Pope Benedict VI. The year was 1965. This story appeared in 1989. Get the joke? Sid cleans his apartment religiously. Ha ha. What a knee slapper.

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10 Responses to And now from Electrolux…

  1. Torbjörn Andersson says:

    The Swedish translator was off by quite a bit then, because there Sid says “When was the Pope here? ’84? ’85?”.

    • Bud Grace says:

      I think the translator at that time was Peter Sparring. He did an excellent job. Quite often his dialog was better than mine. Another terrific translator I had was Klas Danielsson. He was so very good as well as being a terrific artist/caraciturist. He was also a grand champion on Swedish Jeopardy. Brilliant man.

      • Torbjörn Andersson says:

        I haven’t compared much of the Swedish translations to their originals (and I only have a few small and early Swedish collections anyway). But I remember them as funny, and unlike some comics I don’t remember ever thinking that something must have been mistranslated. That in itself tells me they must have done a good job.

        Off-hand I can think of one case where the translator *probably* added to the joke: In one of the early Grelner episodes, he recounts how he almost broke his back during a performance when his garter belt got caught on his bra.

        In the Swedish translation, he buttoned his waistcoat to his trouser zipper instead, which is – or at least was – a very well known phrase here. It was used as the exit joke in a series of improvised comedy skits about Valfrid Lindeman back in the sixties. Somehow that made it funnier to me.

        Wikipedia has an article about Lindeman here:

        (But of course, it could be that the original phrase also had some cultural significance that passed right by me.)

        There have been other strips (or even books) where I’ve seen things being mistranslated. Most bad translations I remember seeing come from TV, though. There was an episode of “The Simpsons” where they consistently translated “Ranch Dressing” as “manure”.

        And sometimes a translation works, even when you’re left wondering if it was by accident. In The Simpsons chalkboard joke, “Indian burns are not our cultural heritage”, the term “Indian burns” was translated as “Burning Indians”…

        • Bud Grace says:

          Years ago when Peter Sparring translated I was in Sweden when a fan asked if he could buy and original. I showed him a copy and he changed his mind. He said Peter’s joke was funnier. I’ll look at your link.

  2. AndyW says:

    We had an Electrolux as well – and I remember the skids. No problem with wheels falling off or catching on something. As kids do, I assumed that everyone had one.

  3. Robert R says:

    I remember GE canisters, Eureka, Hoover and Sears vacuums in my misspent youth. My parents and a lot of relatives had GE canisters.

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