首页 世界杯 新闻 搜索 短信 聊天 企业

新浪首页 > 教育天地 > 《英语学习》2002年5期 > 自己动手为哪般?

Why Do It Yourself?
http://www.sina.com.cn 2002/06/28 09:36  《英语学习》

  By Martin Carvey

  玫文 选注


  The reasons why people engage in DIY have always been numerous and complex. For some, DIY has provided a rare opportunity for creativity and self expression. For others it has been an unwelcome necessity, driven purely by economic considerations. Then there has been asgroupswhich feels that a building can never be a home unless it has been altered and modified to reflect a change of occupancy.<注1> A finalsgroupshas traditionally taken the line<注2> that if you want a job done well, you must do it yourself.

  DIY as necessity

  There is a significant number of young homemakers for whom there is no option but DIY. Their new home, whether bought on a mortgage which consumes a major slice of their income,<注3> or rented at similarly challenging rates, will often require essential refurbishment and even structural repair.

  Some of these people are reluctant first-time DIYers. They would much prefer to hire professionals, but can't afford to do so. The majority, however, welcome the opportunity that need has forced upon them to get involved for the first time in the real business of creating a home<注4>—with all of its unfamiliar physical labour and the learning from scratch<注5> of new techniques. In time, many will migrate to one of the other categories of DIYer,<注6> continuing to exercise their new found talents and enthusiasm when no longer forced by financial constraints to do so.

  DIY as territorial marking

  Even those who have bought a brand new 'starter home', the type which increasingly proliferates around the edges of our towns and cities, will feel compelled to add personal touches of a less dramatic kind to disguise its otherwise bland and expressionless nature.<注7> Putting a 'personal stamp<注8> on the place' was one of the most frequently reported motives for DIY.

  DIY as self-expression

  Many young people today are frustrated artists—their latent creative talents just waiting for the chance to reveal themselves. There are also those seeking opportunities for a sense of achievement and personal fulfilment. DIY provided just such opportunities for the overwhelming majority of young people. They spoke at length of their sense of pride after completing their very first DIY task,<注9> and about how this experience gave them the drive to tackle more ambitious projects.

  This sense of creative achievement comes both from the choices made by the first-time DIYer—the selection of colours, textures and components to apply to the 'canvas' of the home—and from the application of specific skills and techniques. The manufacturers of DIY materials clearly understand this and now provide a wide range of 'arty'<注10> products to fuel creative urges.<注11> At the same time, they make the materials themselves much easier to use—the DIY equivalent of painting by numbers. Special paint effects, which once required the specialist knowledge and training of the true professional, can now be achieved straight out of the can with a simple brush.<注12>

  DIY as perfection-seeking

  A large proportion of first-time DIYers distrust builders and decorators. They feel that most are 'cowboys' and that even the more reputable ones are very unlikely to have the same loving attention to detail and care as the DIYer. Within thissgroupsthere were those who were content for builders to perform basic or structural work, and to undertake tasks such as plastering which are beyond the competence of most DIYers, particularly the younger novices.<注13> The finishing work, however, was something these people kept for themselves—the final 'perfecting' of what otherwise would be just a mediocre<注14> result.

  The problem perfectionists face is that progress can be very slow. One young female partner of a such a perfectionist said: "My boyfriend spent so long decorating the bedroom that I had to hire in someone to do the living room." The living room was finished first. When perfectionists are obliged, by nagging or circumstance, to speed things up, other problems can result:<注15> "The only time I rushed a job was when we had friends coming for the weekend. I was so unhappy with it that I painted it again after they had gone."

  DIY as leisure activity

  For a significant minority of first-timers, DIY is seen as a novel and entertaining pastime. It is not really work, but something akin to<注16> entertainment, shared by both partners and even the children in the case of young families.

  The idea that DIYing is akin to a trip to the lions of Longleat<注17> may seem strange. But for these people home-making was sufficiently different from, and infinitely preferable to, the dull routines of weekday work to constitute a weekend break.<注18> The results of such activity were rewarding, but probably less so than engaging in the activity itself.

  DIY as therapy

  "It's therapeutic isn't it? I'm always in my own little world when I'm doing DIY—it's great." So said a young man of 27. For him it was his way of getting rid of stress after a long day at work—a way of switching off<注19> and using the repetitive nature of many DIY tasks as a way of relaxing. Others hinted at a similar process, where DIY was almost an end in itself, rather than just a means to achieving a better home.<注20>

  While people in thissgroupsmight sound like sad anoraks,<注21> lacking the basic social skills to get a life outside of the home, they were quite the opposite. DIY provided a transitional stage between work and play—something which allowed them to unwind<注22> and rid themselves of tensions, becoming more sociable in the process.-

翻译比赛综述(2002/06/28/ 09:38)
再见了,老板(2002/06/27/ 10:50)
蝶舞翩跹的婚礼(2002/06/27/ 09:50)
写给自己的情书(2002/06/26/ 09:38)
救命的微笑(2002/06/26/ 09:31)
《英语学习》2002年5期 专题


1. reflect a change of occupancy:反映居住的变化。

2. take the(a) line:采取……政策(或措施)。

3. on a mortgage:用抵押贷款的方式。slice:部分。


5. from scratch:从头开始。



8. personal stamp:个人的痕迹。

9.在完成第一桩DIY任务后,他们喋喋不休地表达着自豪感。at length:长久地,罗嗦地。

10. arty: <口> 装作爱好艺术的,附庸风雅的。

11. fuel creative urges:刺激创作的冲动。


13. novice:新手,初学者。

14. mediocre/;mi:di#2%k2(r)/:普通的,平庸的。


16. akin to:与……相似。

17. Longleat:英国著名的游猎公园,允许游客自己开车观赏狮子。


19. switch off: (用开关)关掉(电灯、收音机等),这里指停下来休息。


21. anorak: (北方严寒地带穿的)带风帽的厚茄克,英国人把有独特喜好、有轻度自我中心主义的人称为“anorak"。

22. unwind:放松,松弛。


文化教育意见反馈留言板电话:010-62630930-5178 欢迎批评指正

新浪简介 | 用户注册 | 广告服务 | 招聘信息 | 中文阅读 | Richwin | 联系方式 | 产品答疑

Copyright © 1996 - 2002 SINA.com, Stone Rich Sight. All Rights Reserved

版权所有 四通利方 新浪网