大家好, hi everyone it’s great to see you all here for today’s episode of Growing up with Chinese. 欢迎收看今天的成长汉语.
Now before we get into today’s content, I just want to thank all of you who have left us messages on our website’s comment page. It’s very useful for us to know what you all think for this show. And how we might be able to improve. So thank you everybody.
To just think that even fifteen years ago, cyber communication didn’t exist. It kind of blows your mind*1, no? It’s rare to run into people these days who don’t know how to navigate the internet and send emails and the like*2 but they do still exist and actually today’s dialogue is proof of that. 小明’s dad is having some computer issues but thankfully, 小明 is there to give him a helping hand. Let’s take a look at the dialogue and find out just exactly what’s going on.
I can still remember when I learned how to send attachments with an email. I was in high school. 小明’s dad certainly gave it a gallon effort don’t you think. And 小明 was very patient with him. Let’s take a few minutes now to go over some of what they said.
她今天又加班, 不回家吃饭了. She is working overtime again so she won’t be coming home to eat. 加班 is to work overtime. 回 is a verb meaning return. So 回家 is to come home or return home.
我前两天碰到了一个十多年没见的老同学. A couple of days ago, I ran into an old classmate who I hadn’t seen for over ten years.
小王叔叔现在已经回加拿大了. 他特别想看看我们家的照片. Uncle 小王 has already gone back to Canada. He really wants to see some photos of our family.
所以, 我想把这些照片寄到加拿大去. So, I want to send mail these photos off to Canada. 寄 is the verb to mail or send as in snail mail*3.
小明’s dad is having a hard time. 噢, 我老喽. I’m getting old, he says.
没事儿, 第一次发照片, 谁都免不了犯这样的错误. It’s OK, nobody can avoid making these mistakes the first time they send photos. 免不了 means unavoidable or sure to happen. 犯错误 is to make mistakes or make a mistake.
我们发几张“全家福”吧, 再发几张你的照片. Let’s send some photos of the whole family and then send some of just you. 全家福 is a set way to say photograph of the whole family in Chinese. 全家 means whole family and 福 means good fortune or happiness or blessing. A lovely way to refer to a family portrait, don’t you think?
OK that concludes our general overview of today’s content, and now it’s time to get into some specifics.
All right let’s first take a look at today’s vocabulary and then we’ll move into our radical of the day.
- 碰到 run into, bump into. pèng dào
- 寄 to mail, to send. jì
- 一般 ordinary, generally, usually, typically. yì bān
- 方便 convenient. fāng biàn
Today we are going to be looking at the stone or rock radical 石. So let’s pull this up because it’s a really pretty character actually, this is the character for rock 石. Can you almost see how it’s like rocks falling off a cliff? Well we find it in two of our vocabulary words today. 碰 of 碰到 and 码 of 密码.
So, let’s get 碰 up over here… and 码 over here. OK, 碰 on its own means to bump or touch and 码 over here means sign or thing indicating number.
Chinese historical records show that people used all kinds of methods to exchange information. They kept messenger birds, and used gongs and bells and fires as alert signals. Horse carriers were very popular among the wealthy, and for the not so well off*4, travellers were often asked to take messages to someone far away.
If something was top secret, things got very creative. People might send him messages in a steamed bun or the stomach of fish or pancake of some sort, pretty cool.
For the most part, the most popular form of communication in China today is the text message. I’ve read that China sees over five hundred billion text messages sent per year. You imagine?
Chatting online is also very popular among young people today. I’m constantly being nagged*5 by my Chinese friends as to why I don’t use QQ or MSN. I’m just not really that technically savvy.
I’ve got a good news, today’s language points are all pretty straightforward.
So let’s start by taking a look at 一般, typically, usually or ordinary, general. 一般都发电子邮件. I normally send emails. 我一般七点吃饭. I usually eat at seven. Now, you could also say 他唱歌很一般. He is very average at singing. Or, 我的中文很一般. My Chinese is quite mediocre. So in all these examples what we’re talking about is the norm*6.
免不了 unavoidable. 避免 is to avoid. So 免不了 is unavoidable and yes, you could also say 避免不了. So we’ve got a pattern here. Verb + 不了 is the same as 不能 + a verb. So, 唱不了 can’t sing. 不能唱 it’s the same. 说不了 can’t speak. 不能说.
直接 direct or immediate. 直接 can be used in front of a noun or in front of a verb. 咱们直接去他的家. Let’s go straight over to his house. 他的说话方式很直接. His manner of speaking is very straightforward. Now 小明 told his dad 下次直接登录就可以了. Next time you can sign in directly. Let’s look at some more 直接 examples.
OK everyone that’s just about all we have time for today. 我们今天学了习很多新词汇. 词汇 is vocabulary and we certainly did cover a lot of new vocabulary. So for now just let all settle.
And if you need to review anything, don’t forget you can always visit our website. Now if there is anything you can’t find or something you might have questions about, you can send us an email. 你们可以给我们发邮件.
好了, 今天就到这里. 大家, 加油, 下次见. See you all next time.