Jay Chou: Failure at Love / 愛情廢柴 – English Translation

愛情廢柴 is about a lonely Christmas for a singer [surprise!] who’s recently broken up with his girlfriend [big surprise!]. There is quite a bit of wordplay in the song, which I’ve tried to explain as far as possible.

Read on for both non-literal and literal translations~

聖誕節 剩下單人的剩單節
It’s Christmas – a festival for singles
[There’s a pun here – Christmas = shèng dàn jíe; ‘festival for singles’ = shèng dān jíe]
[聖誕節 剩下單人的剩單節 is literally “Christmas – leftover singles’s leftover festival]

過條街 最好又給我下起雪
Crossing the street; it would be nice if it started to snow
[最好又給我下起雪: literally “best also give me fall-start snow”]

這麼衰 這麼剛好 這麼狼狽
So weak [but the feeling is] just right; so down in the dumps

要不要拍成MV乾脆
Why don’t I just turn it into a music video?
[Lit. Do (you) want to film into MV, simply?]

淡淡憂傷還是最美
Sorrow is beauty
[Lit. A little sorrow is the most beautiful]

劇情是你在寫 有點無解 我們之間
You’re in control; there’s been a misunderstanding
[Lit. The plot [of this story] is being written by you; there’s a bit of a misunderstanding between us]

踏著雪 不知不覺走了很遠
I’m stepping through the snow; I’ve walked a long way without even realizing it

繞著圈 我叛逆點起一根煙
I’m going in circles; I light up a cigarette
[我叛逆點起一根煙: literally ‘I rebelliously light up a cigarette’]

一整天 我旋律哼了一千遍
I hum the same tune all day
[Lit. One whole day, I melody hummed 1,000 times]

千遍一律我不醉不歸
It’s a clichê, but I’m going to get hammered
[There’s some wordplay here: 千遍一律 is a chengyu meaning ‘cliché’, but is literally ‘a thousand times the same’]
[不醉不歸 is another chengyu meaning ‘not drunk not going home’; there are a few other chengyus with the form 不X不Y, like 不見不散]

沒有你的冬天
A winter without you

我會一直唱著唱著
I’ll keep singing and singing

直到你出現
Until you appear

為你封麥 只唱你愛
For you, I’ll give up singing, and just sing
[封麥: literally ‘seal up the mike’]

Goodbye Don’t Cry 哭個痛快
“Goodbye, Don’t Cry”, and cry my heart out
[“只唱你愛 Goodbye Don’t Cry”: literally “only sing you love (the song) ‘Goodbye Don’t Cry’”]

曲終人散 你也走散
The song’ll finish and the crowd’ll leave; you’ll leave me too
[Lit. Song finish people disperse; you also leave disperse]

我承認我是愛情裡的廢柴
I admit that I’m no good at love
[Lit. something like ‘I admit I am love rubbish’]

你的離開 喊得太快
You suddenly said that you were leaving
[Lit. Your departure shouted too quickly; there are other ways of interpreting this line]

我的依賴 還在耍賴
I’m still as irresponsible as ever
[Lit. My reliability still shirking]

眼淚打轉 轉不回來
I’m in tears but can’t turn back
[Lit. Tears spin, cannot turn back; more wordplay here for multiple uses of 轉]

你的笑容燦爛
Your smile is dazzling

Other Chinese song translations here…


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