“答案好像是明摆着的”译为The following answer seems beyond dispute，其中beyond dispute或past all dispute，本作“没有争论余地的”解，现用以表达原文中的“明摆着的”。
“人类对宇宙，对人世，对生命，对社会，总之对人世间所有的一切，越来越了解得透彻、细致，如犀烛隐，无所不明”译为man has acquired a more and more thorough and detailed understanding of the universe, the human world, life and society — in short, everything under heaven，其中“如犀烛隐，无所不明”已作交代，毋庸另译。
“例子伸手可得”译为Examples are legion，其中legion作“多得不知其数”、“众多的”解，是形容词。
“于是就说有一个美女嫦娥奔入月宫”译为created the legend of beautiful Chang’e flying to the moon，其中the legend（作“传说”、“传说故事”解）是译文中的增添词。
“连苏东坡这个宋朝伟大的诗人，也不禁要问出”译为And Su Dongpo, a great poet of the Song Dynasty, wrote the following lines as a matter of course，其中as a matter of course是成语，作“为意料中事”、“不用说”，“自然”等解。
“可是我又提出了问题”译为Nevertheless, I also would like to bring forward some facts，其中“问题”意即“实际情况”，故译facts。
“在家中穿得朴朴素素”译为Women dress casually at home，其中dress casually的意思是“穿得随随便便”、“穿便服”等。此句也可译为Women dress simply （plainly） at home。
“走在大街上，高跟鞋跟敲地作金石声，香气直射十步之外，路人为之‘侧目’”译为On the streets, the loud clip-clop of their high-heeled shoes and the strong aroma of their perfume will attract public attention far and wide.“作金石声”不宜按字面直译，选用拟声词the loud clip-clop表达。“十步之外，路人为之‘侧目’”也未按字面直译，而用意译法处理：will attract public attention far and wide，两处夸张语气，都与原文不相上下。
“达到了匪夷所思的地步”未逐字直译为has reached an unimaginable degree，现译is fantastically overdone，灵活达意，其中fantastically作“荒唐地”、“异想天开地”解，overdone作“做得过分”解。
“很希望发现一张纸条上面写着：此处距商品尚有10公里！庶不致使我使失去寻找的信心”译为You will probably wish for a slip of paper therein bearing the written note,“10 more kilometers to the commodity!”so as to retain your confidence in the search，其中wish for作“盼望”解，往往针对不可能实现的事物；therein意为“从中”，是译文中的添加词。“庶不致使我失去寻找的信心”可按“以便保持寻找的信心”译为so as to retain your confidence in the search。
“华美绝伦的包装”译为the flashy package，其中flashy有“华而不实”之意，比beautiful，gorgeous，exquisite等更确切。
◎ Ji Xianlin
Let me begin with this question. Are human beings getting increasingly intelligent or stupid?
The following answer seems beyond dispute: They are getting more and more intelligent.
In the course of several thousand years of his cultural history, man has acquired a more and more thorough and detailed understanding of the universe, the human world, life and society — in short, everything under heaven. Examples are legion. Our ancestors, out of their fondness for the moon and curiosity about it, created the legend of beautiful Chang’e flying to the moon. And Su Dongpo, a great poet of the Song Dynasty, wrote the following lines as a matter of course:
The Bright Moon, when will she appear?
Wine cup in hand, I ask the azure sky.
I don’t know inside the heavenly palace
What time of year it is tonight.
Today, man has managed to land on the moon and even come back bringing with him some of its clods. Chang’e and her heavenly palace simply don’t exist.
Could man have achieved that without becoming more and more intelligent?
Nevertheless, I also would like to bring forward some facts to show just the opposite. Examples are only too numerous. Packaging is the first thing I want to deal with.
People, especially women, sometimes need packaging in their social activities. Women dress casually at home, but when they go out, especially when they attend parties, they have to be gorgeously dressed and sprayed all over with French perfume. On the streets, the loud clip-clop of their high-heeled shoes and the strong aroma of their perfume will attract public attention far and wide. That’s what we mean by packaging and I call it a kind of necessary packaging.
But there is another kind of packaging — the packaging of commodities. Such packaging is sometimes also necessary and, therefore, should not be mentioned in the same breath. Some time ago, as a visitor to Hong Kong, I found Chinese-made goods there selling at a much lower price than in the mainland and I also learned on inquiry that it was due to plain packaging that they were selling cheap though of equal quality as imported goods. I was quite puzzled about what the customers actually need. The goods or the package?
That reminds me of a little story. An old lady who lived in the upstairs of my building one day went to the food market insisting on buying a chicken with yellowish feathers. The chicken vendor asked,“What do you eat? Chicken or the feathers?”
Nowadays, the packaging of some commodities is fantastically overdone. The boxes, made of wood, paper or metal, are usually very large and very colorful and dazzling. They take up a lot of space on the goods shelves and are very cumbersome whether carried by car or by hand. Very unwieldy whether carried by left hand or right hand, placed vertically or horizontally. And it is also a big headache to have it opened at home. Search left and right, and you still cannot locate the commodity in the huge box. You will probably wish for a slip of paper therein bearing the written note,“10 more kilometers to the commodity!”so as to retain your confidence in the search. According to my rough statistics, some commodities take up only one tenth, one twentieth or even one fiftieth of the space in the huge package. Thinking back to the above-mentioned story of chickens and chicken feathers, I cannot but ask,“The commodity or the package, which do you need?”After all, the wool still comes from the sheep’s back as the saying goes. It is customers like us that will have to bear all the heavy expenses for packaging. And the flashy package, when emptied of its contents, will be nothing but a garbage heap.
Here is my answer to the question I raised at the beginning: Man is becoming more and more stupid. What could you say in retort?
Chang’e — Fairy maiden of the Moon （the lady in Chinese mythology who swallowed an elixir stolen from her husband and flew to the moon）.
Su Dongpo （1037—1101）, also known as Su Shi, renowned writer and calligrapher of the Song Dynasty.