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Below are the 20 most recent journal entries recorded in Speakers of Chinese's LiveJournal:

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Monday, October 18th, 2010
11:54 pm
Why Chinese Is So Damn Hard
An essay on difficulties of the Chinese language by an experienced professional sinologist:


: ) Contents:

1. Because the writing system is ridiculous
2. Because the language doesn't have the common sense to use an alphabet
3. Because the writing system just ain't very phonetic
4. Because you can't cheat by using cognates
5. Because even looking up a word in the dictionary is complicated
6. Then there's classical Chinese (wenyanwen)
7. Because there are too many romanization methods and they're all lousy
8. Because tonal languages are werid
9. Because east is east and west is west, and the twain have only recently met

Thanks to Uztranslations!

X-posted in diamond_wolf, ru_chinese, ru_tao
Tuesday, July 27th, 2010
7:30 pm
Wednesday, June 9th, 2010
12:15 pm
contaminated disposable chopsticks
I am wondering, if a steel fork would actually be that much cleaner.

An investigation into the manufacturing process of disposable chopsticks

Current Mood: sleepy
Sunday, August 23rd, 2009
12:21 pm
How do you say "boyband" in Mandarin? XD
With so many new boybands cropping up in China, I became curious as to how to actually say "boyband" in Mandarin. I think it's "男孩乐队," but does anyone know for sure?

Current Mood: curious
Sunday, March 8th, 2009
7:27 pm
Translation Help...
大家好!要是你們可以幫我的話,就我很高興。 請幫我translate:

願君的采(character I don't know, looks like 擷, but the middle part looks like 告),

Apparently it's from a poem or somesuch?

Any help would be much appreciated!

Current Mood: confused
Monday, February 23rd, 2009
6:16 pm
大家好!最近,我想學zhuyin,可是我不可以找到online typing lessons. 有沒有ideas? 多謝!

Current Mood: curious
Friday, February 20th, 2009
11:12 am
Firstly, I'm wondering how to say the following simple phrases in Chinese:

"Let's be (become) friends!"

"Mine too!" As in, A: "My favorite movie is ____." B: "Mine too! :D"

And secondly, I'm wondering if anyone can explain to me when you use 吧 and 阿? I was watching a Chinese movie the other night and almost every one of their lines seemed to end in 吧 or 阿! I tend not to use these that often, so...I'm guessing I should! I'm worried I don't sound polite enough when I speak Chinese. v_v

Are there any textbooks you would maybe recommend too? I'm enrolled in a Chinese course at college, but I'm not a HUGE fan of our textbook. It's vague at times. For example, I'm still confused about a number of things, especially when to use pronouns. It seems like Chinese people leave out pronouns a lot in sentences where they should be used! O_o So I was looking to get a Chinese dictionary and maybe some other books that might help me.


Current Mood: curious
Thursday, January 8th, 2009
6:53 pm

I just started studying Chinese, and I like it very much!

I have two questions for you today... When I want to say "I'm really looking forward to study Chinese again", can I write: 我很期待再学习汉语。?

And is this sentence correct?

Thank you!
Friday, December 5th, 2008
3:36 pm
Who can help me?

I am a Chinese. My english is very poor.I really want to improve my english.
Is anyone willing to help me?
If someone want to learn Chinese,I shall be glad to do what I can.

By the way,
"when I want to have fun"  in Chinese is"当我想要好好玩一玩的时候".
"Where are my pants?" in Chinese is"我的裤子在哪?"


Monday, December 1st, 2008
7:14 pm
Is this correct? :O
I was wondering, could someone tell me if I wrote these two paragraphs correctly or screwed everything up really badly? It's part of a presentation we have to give in my class.

我 的 房子 附近 有 一 个 图书馆,一 个 电影院,一 个 公园, 还有 很 多 店。我 想 买 东西 或者 完 得 高兴 的 时候,不 用 开车 太 远。<-- I'm trying to say "when I want to have fun" here, but I don't know if I said it right.

我 姐姐 也 是 住 在 房子 的 大学生 (my sister is also a college student living at home - again, not sure if this is right)。她 是 大学 一 年级 的 学生 的 时候 (when she was a first year student), 住 在 学生 宿舍。可是 她 真 不 喜欢 住 在 宿舍, 因为 她 的 同屋 很 吵,除了 喝 啤酒 以外,还 喜欢 烟 雾 大 麻。所以 我 姐姐 快 回家 来!

Current Mood: curious
Wednesday, October 29th, 2008
10:37 pm
Grad student's Chinese pizza project needs your help!
Ni hao, everyone,

I apologize in advance for being one of those annoying people who wants something, but maybe this will be a fun thing for the community.

I'm an MBA student studying International Business. I'm specializing toward China wherever I can, and I plan to start Mandarin lessons once I graduate. This semester I am in a class called Marketing Issues in the Chinese Environment. It's really cool. I love it! It totally confirms for me that I'm on the right path.

Now this is the part where I ask total strangers for help.

This class requires a group project, and my group has decided to explore Domino's Pizza's presence in China. Specifically, we're looking at reasons why Domino's hasn't been as successful as Pizza Hut despite being the undisputed leader everywhere else. Part of our research is to explore Chinese attitudes toward pizza, pizza delivery, favorite toppings, likes and dislikes, as well as dining culture in general. What about traditional Chinese dining might clash with a pizza restaurant? Stuff like that.

So anyway, my teammates and would be most grateful for any input you can give to us, whether you're a Chinese native or just an ex-pat or tourist with insightful observations to offer. I only ask that anyone who responds include both a first and last name and whether you are Chinese or not, and if not, then how much time you've spent in China. Feel free to contact me directly, but I think it will be easier, and probably more fun, if everyone just replies in the comments so we can get a Chinese pizza discussion going.

Thanks in advance, hope you enjoy the talk!

Rebecca Lehmann
MBA Student, University of Colorado Denver
LJ: karmabreeze
Thursday, October 23rd, 2008
6:51 pm
Looking for proofreaders.
Everyone who’s currently a college student will know that it's midterm season right now, and that means ORAL CHINESE EXAM!!! :O

This year’s oral exam is going to involve 3 scenarios we have to memorize. I’ve written all mine out, but I was wondering if someone with more knowledge of the language (I’m only in my third semester) could double check them. Don’t worry – they’re super short. There are a few things I’m just not sure how to say. :(

I put them in Pinyin to make things easier.

Click here to see the 3 scenariosCollapse )

Xiexie! I really appreciate it. <3

Current Mood: curious
Saturday, October 11th, 2008
1:57 pm
Seeking basic translation help
I'm making a fun "travel guide" (well, sort of) for a friend and would really like to include some Chinese phrases.

Some of you may have seen my posts about this on foreignlanguage or other communities, but I'm having mixed luck there and need help specifically with Mandarin Chinese (among other things), so I hope there's a kind (and fluent!) individual here who'd be willing to translate a few sentences for me.

All I need is for you to show me how to write these, and then include a romanized version to help a native English speaker with no Chinese experience approximate the pronunciation as best she can. If you can help, click the cut!Collapse )

Current Mood: chipper
Wednesday, September 10th, 2008
7:22 am
Sunday, June 22nd, 2008
12:04 am
A friend of mine sent me this photo of a plate which a friend of his who passed away recently used to use. He knows I studied Japanese so he asked me if I could tell him what the characters meant. I'm pretty sure it's in Chinese though.

I tried my best to read the stylized calligraphy, but the only character I could identify with any certainty was 花/flower at the bottom right, and I initially thought the one in the center as well as the top was 秋/autumn, but I wonder if it may be 秧/seedling instead. The one to the left I'm thinking may be 飲/drink. The one on the right I can't seem to decipher at all, and while I think I understand the components of the bottom-left one, I can't seem to find a matching kanji, which served to reinforce my belief that it's Chinese.

In any event, if anyone can help me with the characters and meanings that I couldn't identify and/or confirm or dispute my other assessments, I would really appreciate it.

the photo
Wednesday, June 4th, 2008
12:56 pm
Need help!
 I’m a student in linguistic university, & have been learning Chinese for 9 months. I’ve started live journal  in order to improve my Chinese, but the point is I have nobody who could check the correctness of what I write...  So, anyone who knows Chinese & have time & a little interest in it, please correct me!


Tuesday, May 20th, 2008
3:08 pm


谜底Collapse )

Sunday, March 9th, 2008
9:26 pm
Today's Chinese tutoring session was a useful one for me. It was also very humbling.

I know how to say certain words and phrases, but I think the difference between having a real live professional tutor and learning informally is great enough that I stumble over the simplest things. Now I'm not learning "phrasebook Chinese", I'm learning the language from the bare roots. Some of the initials and finals still throw me a bit. I know what I'm saying, but now I have to pay much closer attention to HOW I say it, and how it should sound. Even my tones are not as clear as they should be. I have to put a little more force into the sounds. This is why Asian tonal language speakers are loud: they HAVE to be loud, in order to pronounce everything clearly. That's just the way the languages developed.

What embarrassed and frustrated me, though, were those "sss" and "sh" sounds: the initials j, q, x, z, c, s, zh, ch, and sh are pronounced differently in Chinese. Here is part of the problem: when I was little, I had a terrible speech impediment, and the letter s was difficult for me to pronounce clearly, even with speech therapy for a few years. I finally got to the point where I could speak without too much of a lisp...and then I had a front tooth knocked out. I've had to deal with composites and a crown and finally a partial bridge ( and I'm wearing an acrylic temporary, not the porcelain and metal permanent, which is an expense I haven't been able to handle, even with insurance ), and my speech pattern has shifted accordingly. Now I'm learning this language that completely throws off everything. I chose a tutor because I wanted reinforcement. I wanted professional instruction. I wanted to learn the CORRECT way to speak. Not that I speak Chinese so badly, but that lisp--coupled with a tongue that is a little thicker than normal ( in fact, it's been called a "Mongolian tongue" ) impedes my progress just a little bit now, mostly because it's being called to my attention.

And when part of the exercise includes tone drills like "4 is 4, 10 is 10, 14 is 14, 40 is 40"--"10" and "is" are pronounced almost identically, except for the tone, and "4" is not too different from them--well, you can see what I have to contend with. "Si shi si, shi shi shi, shisi shi shisi, sishi shi sishi."

Yeah, just YOU try it.

So my tutor has assigned me to do the tone drills, which I think are pretty standard for all Chinese language instruction. But those tongue twisters...*sigh*. Damn, I wish I could meet with native Mandarin speakers every day. Not Malaysian, not from Singapore, not Cantonese or Taiwanese or Sichuanese or Shanghaiese who picked up Mandarin because it is the official language of mainland China. I mean hard core, fluent communicators of putonghua, born and bred in the "chicken neck" of China. Why do I keep running into Vietnamese and Koreans and Filipinos? It's not helping me with my Chinese...
Friday, March 7th, 2008
3:15 pm
Small question for a project.
How does one say "I'm a second year college student?"

Current Mood: exhausted
Tuesday, December 18th, 2007
4:27 am
reposting, as I screwed up the first time
Okay, ignore that last post. I've been translating various things all night and completely scrambled up what I was asking, gah. Here's what was *supposed* to be asked.

I am finding
that 银 means silver,
that 阴影 means shadow,
and that both are "yin" in pinyin.

Are my characters and translations correct?
Do both just become "yin" with different meanings?

Thanks for your help and patience! ::sheepish look::

Current Mood: nerdy
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