The interpreter is a rockstar, you have to believe that.
And not just because it’s their job to interpret and because they always have a microphone available, but because that’s the nature of their work – always in the proximity the stage, close to the audience, with their voice picked up and transmitted through some technical wonder to tens, hundreds and sometimes even thousands and tens of thousands of people. It’s easy, in this case, to mistake one for a vocalist in a band, isn’t it? After all, both the interpreter from the translation company and the interpreter from that lovely band you saw at the last festival you went to have an awful lot in common. And they both translate. One translates words. The other, feelings. Which is which? It’s hard to say, and the confusion is always there.
Like in the story below.
I arrive in Poiana Brasov for a conference organized by a large Romanian corporation. I go to check in at the hotel and tell the receptionist:
T: Good evening. My name is X, I am the interpreter for the event of company Y and I would like to check in.
A: Good evening. Interpreter?
T: Yes. Interpreter.
A: How nice! And what music do you play?
I wait a minute and I think for a bit, then I recover from my little shock and I reply:
T: I’m the translator for the Y company event.
A: Oh, and what exactly do you do?
T: I translate…
A: It would have been more interesting if you were interpreting music.
I decide to withdraw in glory, wondering at the same time if it would have been better to simply answer that I interpret music.