New Notebooks

Shopping for stationery in Japan is an absolute pleasure. In China it’s sometimes fun as well. Looks like at least part of this latest round of designs is Korean-inspired:




UPDATE: Brendan has a good post on how English like in the top notebook above comes to be.


John Pasden

John is a Shanghai-based linguist and entrepreneur, founder of AllSet Learning.


  1. […] got some nice examples of local stationery products up in his latest post at Sinosplice. Children’s notebooks are particularly good comedy value […]

  2. Is the four-legged laughing critter a condom or a pickle?
    I mean, both kind of fit in the context…

  3. Watch out for horny angry soil beans

  4. Brendan is spot on. Many translations in China are simply run through Google or any other translation software. Of course, 干 is particularly hilarious, as in this classic:

  5. The third one down with the green circles – that is the most played design in the past two years (2005-2007). Everyone from Target to name brand designers to underground designers and thus, underground brands, have done that design. Funny, I was having a hard time describing it, but I think if I can compile enough of those designs, I think I can visually spell it out instead.

    P.S. Did you hear about Prince Roy’s trip to Beijing, it’s snowing!

  6. Aw come on man – Chinglish is such a hackneyed, worn-out topic for discussion in China.

  7. The Chinglish Files ( has also gone into the translation issues in the latest post. And check out the post from July 5th for a great 干/dried mistranslation (for some reason can’t seem to directly link to the posts on that site).

  8. […] asking why it is so frequently translated as “fuck” in inappropriate situations, while John Pasden and Brendan O’Kane have blogged about related cases recently as […]

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