Chinese vocabulary notes March 2022

Chinese vocabulary notes (March 2022)

Gaming crackdown, war in Ukraine, badminton, Xi dada, freelance life in China and more. The good news: spring has finally arrived!

What the Chinese Think of the Gaming Crackdown in China | Street Interview

When I went to school (back in say 2007) I had a few friends who were heavily addicted to online gaming. It was beyond doubt that their school results and social life suffered from it. How their parents dealt with this behavior or how effective their countermeasures were, I can’t remember, but the thought that the government would step in to limit gaming time or prohibit certain online games would not only have been inconceivable to us, but also outrageous.

This is exactly what the Chinese government did however, to combat online gaming addiction among minors. Asian Boss writes in its video introduction: “China is the largest video game market in the world and its ongoing freeze on video game licenses is said to have shut down over 14,000 gaming-related companies.” In other words, a surprising step for China to take against its own booming gaming industry. The video reveals what Chinese people in Shanghai think about this government policy.

玩游戏 / 打游戏Wán yóuxì / dǎ yóuxìplay games
自控能力zìkòng nénglìself-control ability
培养下一代péiyǎng xià yīdàiraise the next generation
上瘾shàngyǐnaddicted
网瘾wǎngyǐninternet addiction
国家政策guójiā zhèngcènational policy
限制游戏时间xiànzhì yóuxìlimit game time
刷抖音shuā dǒuyīnto “swipe” Douyin
负面的效果fùmiàn de xiàoguǒnegative effect

My thoughts: Especially the elder generation seems to approve government interference in this matter. The children’s parents might suffer from smartphone addiction themselves and might not be in the position to credibly correct their children’s behavior. They do perceive the problem though and might even welcome the support of the government, because they can’t do it themselves. China might be the first to drastically address this phenomenon, but they won’t be the last country to do so (if the measures prove effective).

What Do the Chinese Think of Russia? | Street Interview

Another great and important video about what Chinese people in Shanghai have to say about the war in Ukraine. Some commenters note a number of more serious translation issues that blur the meaning of the actual statements. Irony: The old man doesn’t like the USA and expresses sympathy for Putin, but wears an American cap. As to be expected lots of relevant political vocabulary here:

入侵rùqīnInvasion
主权国家zhǔquán guójiāSovereign state
乌克兰wūkèlánUkraine
官方媒体guānfāng méitǐofficial media
干涉gānshèto interfere
没有权利干涉méiyǒu quánlì gānshèno right to interfere
表示痛心biǎoshì tòngxīnexpress sadness
加入北约jiārù běiyuējoin NATO
盟友méngyǒually
谈判tánpànto negotiate
中立的立场zhōnglì de lìchǎngneutral position
共同体gòngtóngtǐcommunity
国家的领导人Guójiā de lǐngdǎo rénthe leader(s) of a country
保护领土安全bǎohù lǐngtǔ ānquánprotect territorial security
捍卫国家和民族hànwèi guójiā hé mínzúdefend country and people
独裁dúcáiautocratic
世界大战shìjiè dàzhànworld war
核弹hédànnuclear weapons

YoYo Chinese: 杨哥 The Badminton Master

This is a short clip from the YoYo Chinese YouTube channel about badminton, high quality content for Chinese learners as usual. The video contains authentic Beijing dialect from a amateur badminton player and includes explanations.

融洽róngqiàharmony, harmonious
团体tuántǐgroup
团体活动tuántǐ huódònggroup activity
羽毛球yǔmáoqiúbadminton
不分年龄的运动bù fēn niánlíng de yùndònga sport for all ages
一个关系融洽的地方yīgè guānxì róngqià dì dìfānga place where relations are harmonious / on good terms

【The New Taiwanese】Ep.3 Being Mixed Race and Dark Skinned in Taiwan 台灣混血兒皮膚黑的優缺點

In this episode of “The New Taiwanese”, Justin shares his experience as a person of mixed race in Taiwan. He has Philippine roots and speaks Mandarin fluently. The host asks about his experience of having a darker skin color in Taiwanese society. Highly interesting conversation and lots of new insights.

混血儿hùnxiě’er“person of mixed race”
搭讪dāshànstrike up a conversation
小鲜肉xiǎo xiān ròu“young fresh meat”
结结巴巴jié jiē bābāto stutter
困扰kùnrǎotroubled
代沟dàigōugeneration gap
肤色fūsèskin color
面孔miànkǒngface

What do the Chinese Think of Xi Jinping?

Disclaimer: Teacher Li Can doesn’t answer the question, instead he shares his personal views about the Chairman. I might be wrong, but it seems to me that his opinions do reflect what “the majority” or a large portion of Chinese citizens think about their current leader – except for the historical comparisons he draws. On the other hand, we simply don’t know “what the Chinese think”. To me that is a reassuring thought.

政治体制zhèngzhì tǐzhìpolitical system
个人魅力gèrén mèilìpersonal charisma
口才kǒucáieloquence
内敛含蓄nèiliǎn hánxùintroverted and reserved
主席zhǔxíchairman
指手画脚zhǐshǒuhuàjiǎofinger pointing
敢说敢为的人gǎn shuō gǎn wéi de rénsomebody who dares to speak
隐没yǐnmòdisappear

Teacher Li uses plenty of difficult words, but I managed to filter out most of the key vocabulary. The occasional chengyu he throws in don’t make for easy listening.

执政能力zhízhèng nénglìgoverning ability
仁者见仁智者见智rénzhějiànrén zhìzhě jiàn zhìthe benevolent see benevolence, the wise see wisdom
修养生息xiūyǎng shēngxīrecuperate
恢复元气huīfù yuánqìrejuvenate
尖锐jiānruìsharp
反腐堕落fǎnfǔ duòluòanti-corruption
官员的力量guānyuán de lìliàngpower of officials
繁荣兴盛fánróng xīngshèngprosperous
脱贫tuōpínget rid of poverty

Daily Chinese Expression #168「摆设 | 摆设很好看,但却没什么用。」 Speak Chinese with Da Peng 大鹏说中文

A short podcast by Da Peng, one of the most productive and original content creators for Chinese learners. I don’t know much about him, but I reckon he’s a good teacher, judging from how smoothly he introduces vocabulary in his videos. The element of repetition also is useful. And I learned a new word to call people who aren’t of much value in a team situation.

摆设bǎishèdecorations
装饰品zhuāngshì pǐndecoration
雕塑diāosùsculpture
存在感cúnzài gǎnpresence
贡献gòngxiàncontribute, contribution
比喻意义bǐyù yìyìfigurative meaning
用来比喻人yòng lái bǐyù rénuse a metaphor to describe a person
轻视qīngshìto contempt
真正的实力zhēnzhèng de shílìtrue strength
点缀的作用diǎnzhuì de zuòyòngdecorative function

Intermediate Chinese Listening Practice|freelance, work in café, Chinese vlog

I only recently discovered Shenglan’s YouTube channel. She is – among other things – a freelance Chinese teacher with her own podcast and video content for Chinese learners. In this vlog, she gives an impression of a normal working day, blogging at the local Starbucks. Big plus: she speaks slowly and clearly and highlights key vocabulary in her video.

充电线Chōngdiàn xiàncharging cable
充电头chōngdiàn tóucharger
自由职业者zìyóu zhíyè zhěfreelancer
博客bókèblog
干扰gānrǎointerference
传到YouTube上chuán dào YouTube shàngupload to youtube
一份工作yī fèn gōngzuòa job
维持开支wéichí kāizhīto make ends meet
星巴克xīngbākèStarbucks
自律zìlǜself-discipline
排斥páichìto reject (here: not wanting to do sth.)
有意义的事yǒu yìyì de shìa thing that means something
克服自己的懒惰kèfú zìjǐ de lǎnduòovercome your laziness

That’s it for this month, folks. See you in the next!

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