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Jan Finster

Chinese euphemisms

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Jan Finster

I wonder if you guys know any popular, cool or intriguing Chinese euphemisms.

 

Here is one I say today: 

钱树 = money tree; hen that lays golden eggs;

But also a euphemism for prostitute. Definitely a money tree for the pimp🙈 😅

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realmayo

I have a feeling that "he's now studying with Karl Marx" means (or meant) "he's died" but I had a quick look on google and now now I'm not sure!

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realmayo

Ah, great! Looks like I misremembered, unless there are variants. It's a good euphemism though, albeit somewhat dated.......

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anonymoose

Do things like 河蟹 count?

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Jim

Quite fond of the pretty standard ones like 解手 and 房事 just for the slightly different conceptual map they reveal. And everyday ones are more interesting that fancy stuff like 云雨 which seem effete.

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Jan Finster

绿叶 = green leaf

euphemism for an actor playing a supporting role

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abcdefg

I've read several euphimisms for menstrual period. 我的“大姨妈”来了 comes to mind now.  When was the last time I actually heard it said? Not sure. Maybe never. 

 

困难 used to mean broke or out of money. Not sure if this qualifies as a euphimism any more because its use in that context has become very standard and accepted. 

 

I think euphimisms probably change rapidly, much like slang. What was "hip" yesterday will make teenagers groan and roll their eyes tomorrow. Euphimisms have a definite life span. 

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Jan Finster

炒鱿鱼 = stir-fried squid a.k.a. being fired

 

(I know it is an oldie, but I could not resist ( 特朗普被开除了😁🥳))

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