Getting Married at 81
Jin Shengtan says, “People over 30 should not become an official, and people over 50 should not get married. Why? Because otherwise they would be doing the wrong thing at the wrong time.” That is representative of the mentality of people at large in China. According to the Chinese outlook on life, it is most enviable “to achieve success in one’s early years” but most sorrowful “to fail to achieve it until one’s old age”. Hence, even a successful man will feel like going to retirement when he is on the wrong side of 50.
2，“用非其时也”意即“因为时间不对”或“因为那是在错误的时间做错误的事情”译为Because otherwise they would be doing the wrong thing at the wrong time.
3，“少年得志”= to achieve success in one’s early years
“大器晚成”= to fail to achieve it until one’s old age
4，on the wrong side of=…岁以上，过了…岁；之前见过on the right side of 意为“在…岁以下”
And those who continue to work out of necessity in their sixties or seventies must bemoan their plight. However, considering that men seldom live up to the age of 80, their personal concerns may seem to be impeccable. But, from the standpoint of a worthy cause, they are wrong. Because the older one is, the more knowledgeable and experienced he is and therefore the more indispensable he is to a great cause. Moreover, one should conduct oneself with self-confidence. Calling yourself a good-for-nothing on account of age manifests your lack of vitality.
1，“就有抽身不得的慨叹了”即“想必会为自己的处境叫苦”或“就会感叹自己的苦境了”译为bemoan their plight
2，“人生上寿不过八十”即“人很少有活过八十岁的” men seldom live up to the age of 80
3，“就事业的观点上说”译为from the standpoint of a worthy cause，其中worthy意为“有意义的，有价值的”
5，“一老就觉得自己不行”意即“因为年迈就觉得自己一无是处”译为Calling yourself a good-for-nothing on account of age
The same is true of a nation. Self-confidence has a lot to do with its rise and fall. Unlike us Chinese, Westerners usually go in for great undertakings in late life. The recent cases of two Western senior politicians set a good example for us and serve to give us a shot in the arm. One was 72-year-old US secretary of state Cordell Hull, who went to Moscow to attend the 3-power conference in the limelight of the world. The other was former British prime minister Lloyd George, who got married at the age of 81. Their activities afforded proof of their vitality and youthful spirit. The way to live a meaningful life and fully utilize the transient days of one’s life is by continuing to work vigorously in old age rather than retire.
2，“正可给我们打一针兴奋剂”译为serve to give us a shot in the arm，其中“to give us a shot in the arm”意为“给某人打气（或刺激，鼓励等）”
3，“证明”此处译为afford proof of
4，“老了还活泼的干，不必退休去等死，这人生才有意味，才没枉过“吾生也有涯”的岁月。”可看做是一个“事实+评论”句，按英文的“先评论后事实”的行文顺序进行组织，译为The way to live a meaningful life and fully utilize the transient days of one’s life is by continuing to work vigorously in old age rather than retire.
5，“没枉过‘吾生也有涯’的岁月”意即“没有浪费短暂的一生”从正面译为fully utilize the transient days of one’s life
Our national cause now rests, for the most part, on the shoulders of our middle-aged men—men in their forties or fifties. Middle-aged fellow countrymen, roll up your sleeves to strive for our distant goal!
1，“在…手上”=rest on the shoulder of
2,“中年人干吧”译为Middle-aged fellow countrymen, roll up your sleeves，其中roll up your