Fools and Knaves

by Translation Guy on November 11, 2010

The article Fools and Knaves was originally posted on Technorati on November 09, 2010 by featured Technorati author, Ken Clark.

Your pettifoggers damn their souls, To share with knaves in cheating fools. ―Samuel Butler

There is no shortage of horrors in the world. It is my daily struggle to believe in the common decency of the people around us. The psychopaths who rule the world with their wars and murderous politics are exempt from this common decency, of course, but in general we can rely on the kindness and consideration of strangers and neighbors. But when this common social contract is violated, I share in the outrage at these quotidian, petty crimes, such as the one that follows, which was exposed by the power of volunteer translators.

As tropical paradises go, the Maldives, located in the Indian Ocean, are pretty standard. Romantic getaways are a big selling point. “If a honeymoon is meant to be a celebration of love in an intimate, secluded, and most importantly, beautiful setting, then the Maldives is the world’s best backdrop for all these things,” says the Maldives tourism site.

Part of the package often includes wedding vows, delivered in the local Dhivehi language. So it was hardly unusual for a Swiss couple to post their own renewal of vows on YouTube.

But the video attracted the attention of some Dhivehi speakers who heard something a lot more alarming than the wedding bells.

“Your marriage is not a valid one,” said Hussein Didi, the food service and beverage manager at the resort. “You are not the kind of people who can have a valid marriage. One of you is an infidel.”

“The other, too, is an infidel―and we have reason to believe―an atheist, who does not even believe in an infidel religion.”

“You fornicate and make a lot of children. You drink and you eat pork.”

The celebrant also made references to bestiality, sexual diseases and “frequent fornication by homosexuals.”

After the ceremony, the couple was taken to plant a coconut tree together, during which time various comments were made about the bride’s breasts.

This at the classiest resort on the island, witnessed by 15 members of the hotel staff. What a funny joke. Watch the video if you have the stomach for it.

Where’s the gain for these guys to conspire in such an offensive and deceitful way? Well, the president of the Maldives has offered the couple a free vacation (in the Maldives of course) and it looks like jail time for the offenders.

But like ripples on a pond, this act of thoughtless evil spreads in ripples across the Web. Look at the comments on YouTube to see the way that hate spreads.

All for want of an interpreter.  I wonder if the couple had an inkling of what was up. I have to confess I haven’t had the heart to watch the video.

On ne trompe point en bien; la fourberie ajoute la malice au mensonge. (We never deceive for a good purpose: knavery adds malice to falsehood.) ―Jean de la Bruyère


  1. I’m suspicious about the fact that none of them are laughing. If that’s really what they’re saying I find it hard to believe they could keep a straight face.

    And how come it doesn’t seem to have made any serious newspapers?

  2. benkingery says:

    Do you have any idea Westerners, what pizza guys, gas station guys, ….etc. are saying to each other in their languages, when they “serve” you every day ?……. :)

  3. foxguy says:


  4. Louis Harvey says:

    The ‘idiot’ performing this ‘ceremony’ should be locked away. To use a sacred occasion to perform this profanities is beyond contempt. It brings Islam into disgrace and just confirms the West’s beliefs in Muslim that they are intolerant of other faiths and customs. Shame on him and the staff who are all culprits in this disgusting display of contempt for the couple.

  5. Erin Finch says:


  6. They deserved for this, stupid Switzerland , hahahhahahah!

  7. Ha-Ha! that’s PRICELESS!

    Good job!

  8. Judith Dolan says:

    Here is the email address of the hotel:­

    Tell them what your thinking Ken :-)

  9. Sheryl Diaz says:

    I hope this opens your eyes: Don’t listen to politicians and mainstream medias garbage about Islam. A christian has absolutely no reason to feel safe or relaxed whenever in close distance to moslems no matter what the situation. Too bad this couple obviously did not do their research on how fanatical and dedicated Maldivians are with Islam before going there.

    Goes to show I was correct to be so worried of my relative all the years she worked in Maldives. Thank God she is no longer there!

  10. Regardless of how immoral it might be, it’s still funny as fuck.

  11. This is so sad…

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