蘇老師專欄

[ 2019-06-03 ]

<談文論譯>毛小孩與 Furkid   蘇正隆

1977年前就有人對pet 一詞提出批評,認為不夠politically correct,主張叫companion animal (1977) ,之後還有 furbaby (1993),furchild (2000) 等說法。大約自 2004年起,furkid 這個詞在英文裡開始流行,用來替代 pet。台灣現在許多人喜歡養貓狗來作伴,以前小貓小狗叫作「寵物」,現在流行稱牠們為「毛小孩」,不知是巧合還是受到英文影響?

2004年澳洲的 ABC Network 就有以下一段文字,提到養「毛小孩」不用操心將來上私立學校的昂貴學費。你的朋友來訪也會喜歡,因為如果他們過敏打噴嚏,你可以宣稱是對我們家的「毛小孩」過敏:

Couples like furkids because they usually don’t live long enough to need expensive private schools. And their friends like furkids because, unlike real children, you can plausibly claim to be allergic to them.

2005 年 Macmillan Words of the Year 的小冊子就把 furkid 收入年度新詞裡,有以下說明:

If looking after a baby seems like too much hard work, why not think about getting a furkid? A furry companion, whether it is a dog, cat, or rabbit, might not just be a pet, but a substitute child which we can love and care for as a parent would, but won’t answer us back or eventually want to drive our car!
(大意是:如果覺得養小孩太辛苦,可考慮養個「毛小孩」,不管你的毛寶貝是狗、是貓、是兔子,… 你都可像父母般呵護牠,不過可以放心,牠不會跟你頂嘴或把你的車子拿去開!) (Jerome Su, June 3, 2019)