Chinglish at Jinan Airport

This afternoon I was at the airport in Jinan and saw two interesting signs. I also learned a new English word: Bumf – according to the Chinese text it should mean paper, but I have no idea how they came up with this word.

Update: As Danwei‘s Jeremy Goldkorn points out in the comments, bumf is actually an English word (slang) which comes from bum fodder. Thanks Jeremy!

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  1. Marc,

    Bumf is a real English word albeit slang (British slang).

    It comes from "bum fodder" and one of its meanings is toilet paper, although it is more frequently used to mean useless paper e.g. company marketing materials or government propaganda.

  2. Thanks for this interesting piece of information Jeremy, I had no idea about this. It seems the Jinan people's knowledge of English is superior to mine 🙂

  3. When I started out in this country (and in this part of the world) at the turn of the millennium — we *still* had these sorts of signs in many public places. I often get emails featuring this sort of cryptic — dictionary-derived langauge — from clients and contacts, bizarrely enough.

    For China, it's entirely acceptable…quaint even. For Europe it's unacceptable. Completely and totally intolerable.


  4. In the past, I tried other sites and was very disappointed, some of them didn