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Entries in this blog

roddy

Chalk Handwriting

This is a hand-writing chalked advert for a more or less medical service - how many different ailments and diseases can you identify, and which part of the body are they associated with. Good luck though, there are parts of this one I've given up on figuring out . . .

roddy

Domestic Help

This is a poster advertising a range of 家政 or 'home management' services - cleaners, cooks, carers and so on. I've attached a couple of extra larger images of it as I think the chunky text and somewhat blurry photo could present problems for anyone needing to look anything up by stroke order.

It's interesting to see which services are offered and how much they cost. Bear in mind that this is not what the actual worker gets paid, the agency will be taking a cut.

Today's questions, in more or less what I think is order of difficulty.

1) Who costs more to look after, the elderly or the ill?

2) You have 1000Y. Can you afford to have your cat looked after for a week and employ a cook for a month?

3) For a non-leap year February you want to have your kids taken to and from school, your chihuahua washed weekly, and someone to come in for two hours a day Monday to Friday to help around the house. How much will it cost?

4) Which, if any, of these services are for pregnant women?

5) How much would you want paid to offer the 挤肛门线 service?

You can use spoiler tags

[spoiler] text here [/spoiler]

to hide your answers, and if you don't want to read the discussion before answering, close your eyes and scroll down . . .

roddy

Bus Audio

Moving away from the photographic today, we have a mere fifteen seconds or so of audio for you, recorded for you in the entirely authentic setting of Beijing's 107 bus.

Some questions to keep you interested . . .

1) What should all passengers do as the bus starts off?

2) Where should recently boarded passengers go?

3) What two forms of payment are mentioned, and what are the associated verbs?

4) Given that this is the east-bound 107 bus, we're in Beijing, and you have access to the Internet - what stop did you get on at?

roddy

Hutong Etiquette

Lets present this one as a quiz (although if it's too easy for you let someone else have a go first):

1) Which two popular activities are referred to?

2) Which character is wrong, and what should it be? (at least I hope it is. Going to look a bit daft otherwise)

roddy
Proud to add this to my collection of photos of manhole covers. It's quite rare now that I see a new type of cover, but this is the first one I've seen marked excrement. The character is 糞, the full form of 粪 (fèn), although the proportions make it look as much like 米田共, a euphemism based on the componenents of the full form character. I assume it leads to a septic tank rather than a pipe carrying turds around the city.
Manhole-enthusiasts can find this gem at the corner of Wangfujing and Meishuguan Dongjie.

roddy
A mere six characters here, and you shouldn't even need to look them all up.
First, which service does the sign refer to, and what has the business recently done.
Second, what gets delivered into the blue box?
skylee
I went to Singapore for a weekend break and spent most of my time in museums (instead of Little India, the waterfront and malls, etc), which was probably why I liked the country a bit better. I have some observations on the Chinese shown on some exhibits in the museums.
First, 肅清. Actually what struck me was the title "The Sook Ching". It is based on the Cantonese pronunciation I suppose. When I showed my friend this photo she was quite surprised that the title was not the "massacre".
Second, an old notice for Chinese hawkers. Note the different directions in which the words are printed on the same notice - vertically from right to left, horizintally from left to right, and horizontally from right to left. Traditional Chinese characters are used on this notice, and the name of the country on this notice is 新嘉坡. But this is a decades-old notice.
Third, the name of the dish Char Kway Teow. 炒粿條 is used in the photo. If I am not mistaken it is the same thing as what we call 炒貴刁 over here in HK. The Chinese terms are very different
Fourth, Chinese by a Vietnamese artist. It is all right. Although some characters used are odd / wrong (like the 垂 and 淂) but it is not difficult to get the general idea of the meaning.
I hope you find them interesting. Please share your views.
skylee
I went to the Xu Bing Retrospective in Taipei today, and am very glad that I did. I am sure there is a lot of information on the internet about his works, but I was fascinated all the same.
Many of his works are related to languages. Like his ABC series which is about representing English letters using Chinese characters. (Photos 1 to 2)
Then there is the square word calligraphy series, which is about writing each English word in a square. I think the idea is similar to the Korean script, but the Xu Bing version is not as tidy, mainly because English is not Korean, IMHO. And some square words look quite messy, as there are just too many components (long words). I don't think it is a very inventive series and the idea is not very different from the Chinese letters that tattooists use to con the uninformed. But it is fun, and is not difficult to learn and decipher. And, hey, it is Xu Bing. (Photos 3 to 6) You can see in Photo 3 "square word" and "Xu Bing". And in Photo 6 the first words (from left) are "four poems of W B Yeats, calligraphy by Xu Bing".
And then there is of course the 天書 series (Photo 7), which needs no introduction. I am not a big fan of his more recent 地書 series, though.
The exhibition will end on 20 April 2014.







roddy
Holder of the Guinness World Record for highest number of times the word chestnut has ever been written on a shop. In case you were in any doubt about what the place actually sells, they also hang out a megaphone (not pictures) to keep you up to date.
Gulou Dongdajie, at the Gulou end.
skylee
I asked the shop assistant to let me take a photo, explaining to her that people who don't speak Cantonese might not understand what the words mean at all.
So, do you know what the words mean?
skylee
I just want to show a butchered Chinese word on a window in Valencia. To be fair, the same word on the next window had its both limbs intact.
同場加映 (though it is not related to Chinese) :I went to see a free photo exhibtion celebrating the 10th anniversary of the renowned City of Arts and Sciences when I was there. And when I read the English caption (photo attached) of a photo with a dophin in it, I laughed out. Who do you think is/are to be X-rayed?
skylee
I took the first picture last saturday in Tsimshatsui. It was a locked-up newspaper stall, I guess. Obviously those were promotion material for a film, but they looked interesting. If you like you can try to identify the two mistakes among the handwritten words.
The second picture was taken at Hysan Place in Causeway Bay. I am not sure what it was. I guess it was a stage for some performance.
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