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Irritating Words and Phrases in Chinese


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10 replies to this topic

#1 knickherboots

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Posted 23 December 2010 - 10:41 AM

According to a recent Marist poll, Americans awarded the title of most annoying word to "whatever." "Like" got second place. The results are outlined here.

What is the Chinese equivalent? I find the use of 靠 as a substitute for 操, most commonly used as 我靠, to be pretty annoying. (Not sure why, but I don't have a problem with common substitutes for English obscenities (e.g., darn, shoot, frickin').) Developing a nice collection will help to recognize annoying speech when we hear it and avoid using it unwittingly. On the other hand, the intentional application of such terms will help those of us who prefer to be irritating, uncultured or hopelessly 俗.
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#2 semantic nuance

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Posted 23 December 2010 - 11:04 AM

靠! :angry: Whatever!:tong

If you're interested in this kind of language, you may check 中文髒話大全 here and there.
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#3 dali3927

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Posted 23 December 2010 - 11:09 AM

Those two words are very bad-脏话, better know what they mean, but be careful using them or never use them.
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#4 ma3zi1

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Posted 23 December 2010 - 02:15 PM

It irritates me when people say "Anyway, 反正" or "反正, anyway" (mostly in Taiwan). I mean it's so redundant...
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#5 knickherboots

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Posted 23 December 2010 - 02:47 PM

semantic nuance and dali3927: I'm not focused on obscenities; it's just that the irritating term I came up with happened to be one. Someone I know can't stand an abbreviated form of "okay" heard in Beijing: "O儿了". I haven't heard this in action, but I can see why it's irritating. The usage she mentioned was to indicate "That's enough," where 够了 or 好了 would have been standard choices. A Chinese colleague says that a Chinese character isn't used for the "O" sound, but I guess "欧儿了" would work, because 欧 is commonly used to transliterate the "o" sound. (Strangely, though, Obama is presented as "奥巴马" in mainland China, rather than the much closer "欧巴马." The Oscars in Chinese are 奥斯卡奖, so there's some precedence for this usage, though the pronounciation of the initial is different.)

I find "No三克优" (for "no thank you") more funny than offensive because I've only heard it used in jest. But it gets old pretty quick.
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#6 Hofmann

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Posted 23 December 2010 - 02:54 PM

I've read many newspaper articles recently, from 人民日報, 光明日報, 中國日報 etc. Their language is so verbose, yet it's not funny like in the article I linked to. It's just 俗.
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#7 creamyhorror

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Posted 23 December 2010 - 04:35 PM

What is the Chinese equivalent? I find the use of 靠 as a substitute for 操, most commonly used as 我靠, to be pretty annoying.

If I'm not wrong, 靠 is from the Hokkien/Taiwanese "wah kao", where the "kao" is pronounced exactly as 靠 is in Mandarin. Baidu's page on 我靠 doesn't back me up, but the theories there are far from conclusive (saying it's from English "cor"...lol). In any case, "wah kao" and the seemingly similar "kao peh kao bu" ("cry father cry mother") are common expressions here in Singapore.
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#8 roddy

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Posted 23 December 2010 - 04:49 PM

A Chinese colleague says that a Chinese character isn't used for the "O" sound, but I guess "欧儿了" would work

I've seen this subtitled as 欧了 in a Zhao Benshan sitcom, and been understood when I've used it.

As for the origin of 靠 - do we need to make it more complicated than 'people wanted a term that sounded like 操 but could be used more freely' ?

Did you forget the link to the funny article, Hofmann? :P
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#9 creamyhorror

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Posted 23 December 2010 - 07:16 PM

As for the origin of 靠 - do we need to make it more complicated than 'people wanted a term that sounded like 操 but could be used more freely' ?

Because that was the reason OP didn't like the use of 靠, and I was supplying a more correct (and presumably more sense-making) origin. Also we should encourage the use of more dialect words :P
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#10 ma3zi1

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Posted 24 December 2010 - 12:06 AM

@knickherboots: My local copy of 世界日報 here in Los Angeles always uses "歐巴馬" (just like that, in traditional characters). Actually I recall a local Chinese radio show had a discussion about it once (whether is should be 歐巴馬 or 奧巴馬 that is).
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#11 Lu

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Posted 26 December 2010 - 01:04 AM

As for the origin of 靠 - do we need to make it more complicated than 'people wanted a term that sounded like 操 but could be used more freely'?

That's what I used to think, but then I considered 'wakao'. Khau peh is Hokkien for 哭爸, 'cry because your father has died', oa, pronouced wa, is Hokkien for 我, and I suddenly realised that 哇靠 probably comes from Hokkien and means not 我操 but 我哭. (Although it might well have helped the term's popularity that it sounded a bit like 操.) I'm not a linguist and have not further researched this, but it makes sense to me.
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