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most embarrassing moment while learning Chinese


wix
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I was doing a dialogue with a female classmate about how she didn't have money to pay her restaurant tab. Instead of telling her she had to go into the kitchen to wash dishes, I told her to go into the kitchen and take a shower.

Just a few days ago I asked a clerk how much a red bull was. With my terrible Chinese the only thing with 牛 that immediately comes to mind is 牛肉. I was corrected to 红牛,but only after she had a good laugh and I handed what was left of my money and dignity.

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The other day I was talking about counterfeit money and "watermarks" (shuǐyìn 水印). Except, in my mumbling, I think I might have said "masturbation" (shǒuyín 手淫) instead! :o Luckily I don't think anyone noticed after I quickly corrected myself. :D Who would have thought that Freudian slips work in your second language as well? :roll:

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A few days ago I was chatting with one of my classmates who asked me why I haven't seen a doctor about a mild waist pain I've been having, to which I wanted to say 我不相信这二的医生。 As it was coming out though, 大夫 appeared out of nowhere and blended with 医生, so I ended up saying 我不相信这儿的衣服。:oops:

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我不相信这儿的衣服

Nice! In English, today, I accidentally said I'm really 'slired'...b/c I combined sleepy and tired:mrgreen: So don't beat yourself over merging Chinese heh!

Ok, I just remembered one for me. It's not my most embarrassing moment, I try to block the really humiliating memories out, but I remember right after I first started studying Chinese many many moons ago I was trying to tell my newly found, virtually zero English-speaking language partner 请坐,but it kept coming out like 请走 so I basically chased her out of the house, I mean she was walking to the door looking at me really confused then I had to drag her back in and sit her down so she knew what I meant.:help Then it finally became very clear and very funny after she knew what I was trying to say!

Ok I'm going to bed now.... I'm slired. yawnnnn.

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  • 4 weeks later...

I thought that masturbation was zi4 wei4, or maybe that's a Taiwanese thing..

Or I'm just wrong.:mrgreen:

I personally cant remember anything off the top of my head for myself, but I remember a friend who was running around looking for her hand bag-

"Wo de bao1 pi2, wo de bao1 pi2" instead of "wo de pi2 bao1", the mistake being "thin skin", meaning the skin at the end of a man's sensitive parts, instead of pi2 bao1, skin bag, literally translated.

Someone did laugh at me once for saying that I already had something "wo yo le", apparently this can mean "I'm pregnant", but I'm still not sure how to say you already have something if you dont say "wo yo le".:wink:

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my first day at BLCU, as I had missed the placement test and couldnt speak any Chinese, I failed to communicate to the lady in charge that I dont know a single word of Chinese. She then just put me in the class with the least students, where neither the teacher, nor any of my classmates (Korean & Japanese) spoke a word of English.

After not understanding a word during 4 hours of class but trying very hard to learn the 生词 in the book as they had English translations, I went to the BLCU canteen to finally get some food and make sense of what exactely was happening to me there.

The guy at the first foodstall asked me what I want. I of course wanted to try my Chinese and order something I had seen in the book: beef (cow meat).

Unfortunately I confused 牛 with 女。 After insisting very self confidently for quite some time that I wanted to eat nv rou, the slightly scared looking chef was starting to ignore me as he obviously wasnt willing to fulfill my request. I then proceeded to actually writing the two characters (女肉) down for him.

After vehementely shaking his head he gestured me to go somewhere else.

On the way to the next foodstall I actually looked up what I had just said and suddenly became for the rest of the lunch break the quietest student BLCU had seen in a long time.

I have never been back to that foodstall.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I remember being in a taiji class many years ago, and our Chinese master was visiting us. My instructor was teaching a class while the master watched, and he complimented me on my "good jing". The master burst out laughing ... apparently my instructor's tones were wrong, and he basically said that I had good sperm, not good power :-(

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hah.. yeah, good jing! :D How embarrasing!! :wink:

我已经有。。

Dont know why I didn't think of this, since I'm always saying it.. I must be losing my mind.

BTW- on the subject of the Nv ruo mian. You could also sell "Dao Shao Mien", for which I cant find the translation for.. you know what I mean! :wink:

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You could also sell "Dao Shao Mien", for which I cant find the translation for.. you know what I mean!

should be: Dao Xiao Mian 刀削面, Knife-Cut Noodles. You spelled the Pinyin wrong. No wonder you can't find it.

Nv Ruo Mian

I think it should be: "Nv Rou Mian."

肉 = rou, not ruo.

I should have added my experience:

My teacher once asked a question and I answered by using 食煙 from colloquial Cantonese, meaning "to smoke a cigarette" instead of 抽煙, actually puzzling my teacher, who was teaching Mandarin, and from Taiwan!!! So she corrected me but now I'm puzzled by why it's 抽 and not 食?! In Cantonese, 食 = to eat; 食煙 = the act of putting the cigarette in your mouth, and not literally eating the cigarette.

Edited by trien27
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  • 4 weeks later...

I am a chinese and I think I understand your embarrassed feeling.the word 同志 has two means.One means comrade and it usually used by government official.Another one means gay and it usually used by ordinary people(few in china and many in Taiwan ).

The word of 小姐 is as the same as 同志. if it is used in a formal situation ,it means miss.and if it is used in infomal situation ,sometimes it means harlot .

my enlish is poor and i hope you could understand what i mean.

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