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Tuesday, March 20, 2012

North Korean News and Resume Fun times

Nice blog title huh?

One of the highlights of my job is that when working in an international setting, especially with non-native English speaking countries, you often come across reports and documents that have some pretty funny English.   As a speaker of foreign languages myself, I am sure that I have said some crazy stuff accidentally in another language so I can somewhat relate.  But usually when something's in writing I make damn sure things are grammatically correct. There are enough tools out there these days on the internet that excuses are pretty hard to come by.  

I enjoy funny English so much that a couple of colleagues and I used to get together in one of our offices weekly and look up the North Korean news online just to laugh at the way things were written.  It's crazy - if you haven't read it, you should. It's so formal and censored and it's always about topics such as "great leader visit shoe factory to promote hard work". Always about the great leader Kim Jong IL or other "loved and trusted leader".
Here's an excerpt from a Korean Central News Agency daily news update (Yes, I am a total nerd at heart):

Kim Jong Il put up slogan "Love the young people", pleased more than anyone else with what they have done, and gave the word "youth" to the names of the structures built by them.
The young people in the DPRK loved and trusted by Kim Jong Il are now dynamically bearing the brunt of every difficult and labor-consuming project for building a thriving nation, united closer around the dear respected Kim Jong Un.

Respected leader Kim Jong Il observe funny colorful blow up doll and think to himself, "two legs create efficiency for standing up doll". Great leader gave appreciation to humble assembly line worker for creating colorful blow up doll.     (my North Korean version of what's happening in this photo)

But funnier is the types of things you can find on international CVs and resumes. These were sent to me by a friend that does recruiting for an unnamed international NGO.

 Real examples of how people describe themselves:
-       “a multi-skilled rare pedigree and embodiment of professional humility”
-       “an all-around person”
-       “a beacon for strategic planning in Africa”
-       “…who is very mostly fluent in English”
-       “…become a useful jewel of your organization”

Coup de grĂ¢ce:
“Objective: To work for a well reputed organization like yours and to take it to the last mile of success through my mind-blowing skills…”

Special Skills mentioned on REAL CVs
-       Driving
-       chatting and playing with small children
-       stationary bicycle riding
-       “being”
-       cultivates Bonsai trees
-       “watching”
-       Organizing welfare activities e.g. weddings, parties funerals etc
-       “things that are social”

Most popular interests/hobbies:
-       Making friends (appeared 9 times)
-       Reading the news (appeared 7 times)
-       Walking (appeared 5 times)
Bonus Qualifications Listed on CVs
In response to the request to List any office machines or equipment you can use:” 
 (highlights are out of a list of 45)
17. Paper shredders.

24. Paper cutters.

25. Folders.

Enjoy!  I promise to have more interesting content tomorrow :-) 
Feel free to submit a better caption for my North Korean News Photo above!

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