It's a joke 简直是个玩笑

The script of this programme 本節目台詞

Helen: 歡迎收聽 BBC 地道英語節目, 我是 Helen, 可是我的搭檔 Neil 看起來非常無奈。 Neil, what are you doing to that mobile phone?

Neil: Argh, I can't get it to make a phone call. It does everything else: it takes photos, it connects to the internet, it even irons shirts but it won't make a call!

Helen: Your mobile irons your shirts?

Neil: No, not really, but honestly it does everything apart from the one thing I want it to do – make a phone call. It's a joke!

Helen: A joke? 一個玩笑。 But you're not laughing. It can't be a very funny joke.可是我看不到你臉上有任何笑容,這個玩笑肯定不好笑。

Neil: Well if you say something is a joke in English it can also mean that it's not very good or not worthy of respect.

Helen: 當我們說某件事情是一個玩笑時,實際是想表達這件事處理非常不當。請聽以下幾個例子。

  • The investigation into police corruption was a complete joke. Everyone knows the officers were taking money but they were let off.
  • The weather forecast was a total joke. It said it would be warm and sunny but it's freezing and raining.
Image caption What does it mean when someone says that their mobile is a total joke?

Helen: 就像我們剛才聽到的,有人形容對警察貪污案件的調查就是一個 joke. 這並不是說這件事情很好笑,實際意思是沒人在徹底調查,根本就不起作用。另外天氣預報根本就不准,所以被形容為 a joke.

Neil: Notice that you can add words before 'joke' to make the meaning even stronger.

Helen: 我們可以在 joke 這個單詞的前面加其他的詞來加重語氣。

Neil: It's a complete joke.

Helen: A complete joke. 簡直不可思議的玩笑。

Neil: It's a total joke.

Helen: A total joke. 意思一樣,完全是個玩笑。

Neil: It's an absolute joke.

Helen: 和剛才的幾個一樣,an absolute joke. Anyway Neil, why don't you just read the instructions for your new mobile phone? Then you'll probably be able to work out how to make a call. 看看用戶手冊,我想你就能知道怎麼打電話了。

Neil: I looked at the instructions but they're an absolute joke.

Helen: Oh really?

Neil: Well for a start they are in about 17 languages apart from English.

Helen: What a joke!

Neil: Yeah I know.

Helen: 我們今天聽到了不少的玩笑,但是沒有什麼笑聲。

Neil: Argh, what a useless piece of…

Helen: 希望 Neil 能搞清楚怎麼用他的手機。

Neil: Argh, this is beyond a joke, it really is…

Helen: 我們下期《地道英語》節目再會。

Neil: Argh, mobiles…