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michaelS

Animated Comedy and Social Issues: 小报告 (Episode 8)

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michaelS

小报告   Xiao Baogao

 

A very short, fantastically well animated series of online videos offering analysis of current trends and talking points among younger Chinese people, as well as musical parodies.

 

What does the title mean? ‘Little report’, obviously, but also ‘snitch’ or ‘telltale’ or something like that.

 

I’m going to post up some of these videos with a translation of the first minute or so, and vocabulary (in the style of realmayo’s excellent work with 锵锵三人行). The full length is generally 5-6 minutes, but there is a vast amount of content packed in.

I’ll also put a few questions up that you can use to check your comprehension.

 

Level of Chinese: advanced. It’s really fast and full of complicated language and stuff that doesn’t appear in dictionaries.

 

Finding it online: it doesn’t seem to be on Youtube, so if you don’t want to use Tudou I recommend downloading an mp4 using a site like flvdown.com

 

NSFW status: some scenes in these videos may prove a little outré for your co-workers, I dunno…

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michaelS

Episode 8:      X

 

“Young people who say No”

 

http://www.tudou.com/albumplay/p5mZ4ZnbdTw/Emu07kjg4Aw.html

 

This episode is about counter-culture in China, or at the very least about young people refusing to follow typical social norms.

 

Three particular ‘types’ are illustrated: refusing to get married, refusing to get enough sleep, and refusing to return home for Chinese New Year.

 

Other episode themes which hopefully I will post up soon: shopping abroad, long-distance relationships, surrogacy services. 9 episodes have been released so far.

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michaelS

Translation

(text in blue is included in vocabulary section below)

 

0.00 – 1.26

 

他们是问题青年,是一群给自己贴上字标签的年轻人,对婚姻说不,对睡眠说不,对回家说不。

These are so-called ‘problem youth’, a group who have labelled themselves with the word ‘No’. They say ‘no’ to marriage, ‘no’ to sleep, ‘no’ to going back home [for Chinese New Year].

 

生活的多样性于他们就于性取向一样,从来不止一种. 他们就是不X(念:插)族

The many ways to live your life are, to them, the same as your sexual orientation – there is no one right answer. They are the ‘naysayers’ [if anybody would like to come up with a better translation, feel free]

 

一:恋爱不婚族

1) Say No to Marriage

 

都说婚姻像围城:里面的人想出来,外面的人想进去。可不婚族才懒得趟这趟浑水。

Marriage is like a fortress besieged: those inside long to get out, those outside long to get in. But those who say No to marriage are reluctant to step into those murky waters.

 

他们是这样一群人:财务自由,衣食无扰,喜欢一个人生活无拘无束,宣扬“找个无感小丈夫,不如养条看门狗娶个无情小媳妇,不如回家蹭大树

What type of people are they? Financially unconstrained, not scrimping and saving for life’s necessities, they prefer a single life, footloose and fancy-free. The women say “what use is a husband you don’t love? A dog would be a better choice…” The men say “why would I want a nagging wife, when I can come home and go tree-climbing?” [watch the video to see what that’s in reference to!]

 

当然,不婚族也会谈恋爱,玩同居,享受滚床单的乐趣。在他们眼里,“我爱你与婚姻无关。

Of course, these young people are still interested in relationships, they move in together, enjoy carnal pleasures. The way they see it, saying “I love you” and wanting to get married are two completely different matters.

 

据《2013中国男女婚恋观调查》显示,8% 的男人和5% 的女人认为感情不必靠婚姻维持。在结不起婚逼婚成风的当下,不婚族更在意自己的需求。

A 2013 survey on Chinese men and women’s views on love and marriage showed that 8% of men and 5% of women believe that your feelings don’t need marriage as a crutch. Faced with a rising tide of financial and parental pressure, those who say No to marriage prefer to concentrate on their own well-being.

 

他们知道婚姻这档事儿非同儿戏,又不想在家长里短逢场做戏

They know that marriage is no laughing matter, and are not willing to put on a show just for the sake of keeping up appearances at home.

 

就宁愿演着剩男剩女独角戏,也不愿花9块钱买一纸证明来堵住父母的啰嗦。你也老大不小了,该结了。隔壁老王孙子都能打酱油了。”

They would prefer to perform in their own show, as so-called ‘leftover men or women’, and the 9RMB for a marriage certificate that will stop their parents’ nagging still seems like a price not worth paying. [impression of the parents] “Son, you’re all grown-up now, you need to marry. Mr Wang next door already has grandchildren old enough to go to the shops on their own.”

 

人们常说,结婚是个大事,既然如此,那就考虑一辈子吧,一辈子吧。。。。。

People often say that marriage is a serious matter, and that being the case, it needs considering carefully… for your whole life, if necessary.

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michaelS

Vocabulary from Part 1 (say No to marriage)

 

性取向   Sexual orientation

无拘无束   Free from constraints

同居   Co-habitation

滚床单   To have sex

结不起婚   To be unable to get married (most usually because of financial status)

逼婚     To be pressured into getting married (by your parents, probably)

非同儿戏   No laughing matter, a big deal

家长里短  The gossip of neighbours in your community

逢场做戏   A fake performance

独角戏      A one-man show

老大不小  A grown-up, not a child any more

打酱油   To go and buy soy sauce – here the meaning is that the kids have grown up enough to be able to run errands

 

---

 

出轨    to cheat on someone

泡妞    to hit on women

出柜     to come out of the closet

传宗接代    to carry on one’s ancestral line

愿打愿挨    sadomasochism

 

Vocabulary from Part 2 (say No to sleep)

 

黑着眼眶     with bags under one’s eyes

追剧          to avidly follow TV shows, waiting for the next episode to be released

心痒痒     an ‘itchy heart’ – some nagging feeling or desire

五妹   not a real expression – watch the video and see what is meant

夜宵   a late-night snack

 

Vocabulary from Part 3 (say No to going back home)

 

衣锦还乡  to return home in style

盘问   cross-examination, interrogation

物是人非   things stay the same, but people change

一事无成   to accomplish nothing

编理由     to invent a pretext or excuse

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michaelS

Some questions about the video, for you to check your comprehension (if you so wish…)

 

1. What would some Chinese women prefer to a husband?

 

2. How many hours a night do young creative-types average?

 

3. What is Xi Jinping’s take on young people’s lifestyles?

 

4. Why is it sometimes disappointing to meet your old school friends?

 

5. What is the most useful reply when faced with interrogation about your prospects from your extended family?

 

6. What’s the best way to get out of going home for New Year?

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michaelS

There is also of lot of interesting text in the video, on mobile phone screens, in speech bubbles, on signs, etc.

 

For example, just at the point when the narrator is saying that, for the 不婚族, marriage is something to be considered very carefully, there is the line 以结婚为目的的恋爱都是耍流氓 written at the top of the screen. This is a deliberate twisting of a quotation from Mao – see here for source and here for a horrible yet very popular song based on the original quote.

 

This is another reason why I think these videos have a lot of replay value – you see something new each time.

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li3wei1

Great stuff, but it's way too fast for me.

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Shelley

Too fast for me too, and headache inducing flashing colours and images. I suspect if you are young and your Chinese is better, it would be quite good.

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michaelS

li3wei1 - I think it's pretty much too fast for any non-native speakers and a lot of native speakers to 'get' in one go, since the way it's made has packed in a lot of meaning, actions, text and audio into each section. I think it's designed more to be decoded or passed around, shown to friends and then watched with them, and each time noticing a few new things

 

I should mention that I was introduced to it by a Chinese teacher, who said that there were a few times when he was going by context to get the meaning

 

Shelley - sorry! Hope your retinas have suffered no lasting damage. I think the first ten seconds is especially loud and explosion-y

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Shelley

Hey no problem, no lasting damage.

 

It is a shame because I would like some sort of animation more at my level (much lower than this), but subject matter is always a problem.

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