Hi everyone, thanks for joining us for another episode of Growing up with Chinese. 欢迎大家收看今天的成长汉语.
The aim of our show is to help all of you learn some basic Chinese, through the adventures of 小明, a local 北京 high school student, and Mike, an exchange student who is living with 小明. And apart from language study, Our goal is also to introduce to you all various aspects of Chinese culture, history and everyday life.
So, 今天我们要学什么? What are we going to learn today? Last time we covered hobbies and learned a lot of about American football. Today our fabulous trio is up to something slightly different but equally fun. They are playing video games. 他们在打游戏. 游戏很多. There are lots of games. 他们呢? 在打哪一种? What kind of game are they playing? Well, let’s check in with them, and find out.
快点儿, 快点儿. Faster, faster. 第三, 比第二名就差那么一点儿. Third, just a fraction behind second place. Now we talked before about how adding 第 at the front of a number makes it an ordinal number, right? Well, 名 means place as in second place, third place and so on. 第一名, 第二名, 第三名. first place, second place, third place. 差 means to differ from or fall short of*1. 比第二名就差那么一点儿. Just a hair or a fraction behind second place.
你们俩玩儿赛车哪. 这个游戏我玩儿得可好了. You two are playing a car racing game? I’m really good at this game. 玩 or 打 are the two main verbs used for playing a game like football or video game. 赛车 is car racing and 可好 means really good much like 很好.
兰兰, 没想到你也在玩儿这个游戏. 兰兰, I wouldn’t have thought you are playing this game, too. 没想到 means wouldn’t have thought or wouldn’t have imagined.
那怎么了? 不信我们比试比试. What’s up with that? Or what’s wrong with that? If you don’t believe me, let’s have a competition. 信 is to believe so 不信 means to not believe. 比试 is to have a competition. So to say 比试比试 makes it kxxx a little less formal kind of like how we might say in English “let’s give it a go*2” or “let’s have a little race.”
兰兰, 如果你过了第八关, 我和小明请你吃比萨. 兰兰, if you can beat the eighth level, 小明 and I will take you out for pizza. 比萨 sounds like pizza, right? 请你吃比萨. Take you out for pizza. Now this structure implies that the boys will pay.
All right, that just about wraps up today’s general overview of the dialogue. Now it’s time to get into some specifics.
Let’s dive straight into our vocabulary for the day because our first word is actually a word I use every single show.
- 加油 make an extra effort, it’s used to cheer someone on. jiā yóu
- 比试 have a competition. bǐ shi
- 游戏 game. yóu xì
- 崇拜 worship, adore. chóng bài
- 出发 set out, start off, start from. chū fā
Today we’ve got a maintain to cover for a radical, literally 山 or mountain. And we can see it in actually two of our vocabulary words of the day, 出 of 出发 and 崇 of 崇拜. So let’s get these two characters up on the board and take a closer look.
We’ve got 出 … this is 出 and actually it’s especially fun, because it’s two mountains one on top of the other. Now 出 on its own has over twenty meanings. But some of the more common meanings are to come out, arise or go beyond. Now let’s get 崇.
OK, this is our character 崇. now 崇 on its own means lofty*3, sublime*4, esteem or worship. And actually this is quite an interesting character. Because down here, here we have our mountain, but down here this component down here, is the uh character 宗 and it means ancestor or clan. So you have ancestors on a mountain for the character for lofty, esteem or worship. It’s not pretty cool?
No matter your age, I’m sure all of you can think of at least a handful of games you loved to play as a kids. And if you’re a kid right now, I’m sure you can think of all kinds of games you like to play.
Many places share the same games like hopscotch*5, jumping rope, tag*6, playing house, hide and go seek. Another fun game both kids and adults like to play here is something that resembles a hacky sack but it’s called a 毽子.
The idea behind it is basically the same as a hacky sack: you throw it into the air and then you keep it bouncing up and down by kicking it with the side of your foot, right here.
Now hacky sack is typically a round ball that is filled with beads. And 毽子 can come in two basic forms. One is a circular rubber coin with feathers sticking up out of it, and the other one is made by hand. With the hand made one you take a metal washer and some plastic string and pieces in the string around the washer. Once it’s all covered, you fray*7 the string so that it has some resistance in the air.
This is the kind of 毽子 I used when I was a kid. And I have to say it’s my favorite. But for the most part, these days the rubber and feather 毽子 are the most popular.
Now when people are good at kicking 毽子 or 踢毽子 in Chinese, they’re absolutely incredible to watch. And incidentally, this game is a great way to get some exercise. So you do see a lot of people in parks and gardens kicking 毽子. Good ones can keep the 毽子 in the air for tens of minutes. Sometimes they use their knees, their elbows, their feet, their head, shoulders in basically any part of their body that can launch the 毽子 back into the air, they’ll use it.
It’s time to focus on our language points of the day.
没想到. Wouldn’t have thought or wouldn’t think. 我真没想到她会来. I really didn’t think she would come. 兰兰, 没想到你也在玩儿这个游戏. 兰兰, I wouldn’t have imagined you’re also playing this game.
OK we’ve got a pattern to take a look at 只有 something 才 something. Now this pattern sets up a condition in a compound sentence. 只有 才 is like saying only if … then in English. The condition comes after 只有. So, 只有过了这关, 你才能升级. This means only if you pass this level, can you then upgrade. 只有天天练习, 你才能学好中文. You can only learn Chinese well, if you practice everyday. Let’s take a look at some more examples.
就. Today we see 就 acting as an adverb. 我早就玩通关了. I beat all the levels a while ago. Now in this example 就 is emphasizing that something happened a while ago or something happened earlier than I might expect. 我七岁就来中国了. I came to China when I was only seven.
Now if you want to emphasize that something happened later, the word you want to use is 才. 他们才到. They just go here. 我们早就到了. They’ve been here a while, they arrived a while ago. Do you see the difference?
OK it’s time to call it a day. Seeing Mike, 小明 and 兰兰 playing a video game made me wanna play one, too. I might need to go game hunting later.