大家好！ (Hi, everyone!) This is Mandarin Weekly #90, with links and information for those of us learning Chinese.
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Happy National Day!
Beginner If you’re in China, then you’re celebrating “National Day” this week. Here are some words and phrase, from ChineseClass101.com, s to describe National Day and what’s happening then:
Intermediate Don’t feel good? Need to go to the doctor in China? Here are some useful words and phrases that’ll help you get through your visit in Chinese:
Intermediate The word 烦 (fán) means to “annoy,” and can thus be of great use when dealing with anyone from salespeople to friends — either to tell them that they’re annoying you, or that you’re sorry for annoying them with your request:
So long, farewell
Beginner How do you say “goodbye” in Chinese? The simple answer is 再见(zài jiàn), but there are other words and phrases you can use, as well:
Biggest, best, lesson ever
Intermediate How can you say that something is the most, the biggest, the most extreme? This video from ChinesePod.com describes useful Chinese terms for this:
Not too short, please
Intermediate I’ve never gotten a haircut in China — partly because I’m sure that I’ll say something wrong, and end up looking different than I want. Here’s a video with some useful haircut-related vocabulary that can come in handy, to ensure you get the look you want:
Advanced The US presidential election is in full force. Don’t depend on people in China for great political punditry, but this article includes some interesting reactions from Chinese citizens who watched the debate, and described their thoughts in Chinese:
Lucky and unlucky numbers
Intermediate If you visit China, you’ll quickly discover that people love the number 8, and hate the number 4. (On my first visit to China, my client very excitedly told me that their office was on the 8th floor.) Why do numbers have this significance, and what else should you know about it? LearnChineseNow.com has a video that’ll explain all:
From all over
Intermediate How can you say “from everywhere” in Chinese? The phrase 五湖四海 (wǔ hú sì hǎi) is what you want:
Intermediate Are you sure about something? I mean, really sure? I mean, completely convinced? If so, then you are 心服口服 (xīn fú kǒu fú):
Beginner Here are some simple, two-sentence dialogues, along with questions, to test your reading ability and vocabulary:
Driving in China
Beginner It’s hard enough to cross the street in China; driving there takes true nerves of steel. As if that’s not enough, you need to know some Chinese words and phrases about driving:
Snakes with feet
Intermediate A children’s story about snakes and feet, from eChineseLearning.com:
Intermediate To newcomers to Chinese, zai (zài) can be confusing. That’s because it can be used in a number of ways, including as both a verb and as a preposition. This post and video give numerous, useful examples:
Intermediate Want to see a movie? Want to make a movie? Here are some useful film-related terms in Chinese:
Intermediate As you become more fluent, you’ll want to express increasingly complex ideas using idioms. Here are several that you can already start to incorporate into your speech:
Learning via board games
Intermediate It’s often said that you can (should) surround yourself with as much Chinese as possible, to improve your fluency. Here’s an idea: Play board games in Chinese! You’ll not only have fun, but improve your language skills:
What’s the point?
Intermediate How do you describe percentages, and/or the decimal point, in Chinese?
Intermediate Chinese characters have evolved over time, and the history of their forms can be fascinating. Where can you learn about this history?
Intermediate The character 当(dāng) can be used in a number of ways, and helps to make your sentences richer. Some examples:
Beginner How can you say that something tastes good in Chinese? Here are a variety of words and phrases that get this idea across:
Advanced What’s the best way to talk about surviving a natural disaster?
Advanced The verbs 喝 (hē) and 飲 (yǐn) both mean “to drink.” What’s the difference between them?
Traditional Chinese readers
Advanced Where can you find readers (i.e., books for learners) in traditional Chinese?