字. October 2010

  • 阿根廷

    Ā​gēn​tíng​ - Argentina

    Today I said goodbye to Victoria in the morning and hello to my friend from Argentina in the evening. We went to a very nice restuarant that didn't serve beer and then to a pub that did. It was good to see him for the first time in three and half years and reminise about the good old days in Oxford.

    This sentence is from dict.cn and seems very apt.

    麻烦的是他已从阿根廷那边过来了。我难以推迟和他见面。希望你能理解。
    And the trouble is, as he's over from Argentina, I can not very well put him off. Hope you understand.

  • 爆炸物

    bàozhàwù - explosive

    Today I went to the pub with my Argentinian friend and it turned out that he knew a lot about chemistry, particularly the chemistry of explosives. Slightly worrying maybe, but I think that scientists for you.

    火药是一种爆炸物。

    Gunpowder is an explosive.

  • 制服

    zhì​fú​ - uniform; subdue; check

    Litterally 'system clothing', I picked this word today, because Leon found a very werid shop/museum which had a display case containing one Goering's two surviving uniforms, and one of Charlie Chaplin's costumes. It also had some SS caps, lots of weapons and various life-size model sharks and aliens.

    他们穿著那种制服看起来怪模怪样的。
    That uniform makes them look absurd.

  • - rich, abundant

    This is a pretty common character, especially around Chinese New Year because it is used in good wishes. I picked it today because it was part of a title of an article in Nature, 学富五车. This is 成语 meaning very learned, litterally, knowing enough to fill five carts (with scrolls). The point of the article was that the knowledge in five carts of scrolls could be now be kept in a tiny memory card.

  • 含有

    hányǒu - contain

    This word appeared in a Chinese lesson newsletter that I signed up to at some point. It was the only word in the weekly email that I'd not seen before.

    这支牙膏含有芦荟的成份。
    This toothpaste contains aloe vera.

  • 废物

    fèiwù - rubbish

    Today I finally emptied the bin after probably too long and realised that 'rubbish' was yet another everyday word that I didn't know.

    这些放射性废物应该放在密封的箱子里深埋在地下。
    The radioactive waste should be buried deeply under the ground in sealed box.

  • nuò - promise, consent

    I picked this word today because it is part of the transliteration of Rachmaninov, 拉赫曼尼诺夫, and today I listened to Rachmaninov as Victoria created a Nodame playlist. I picked this character, because it's useful and has appeared on my Smart.fm list in a couple words.

    他们的承诺分文不值。
    Their promises are not worth a damn.

  • 退钱

    tuìqián - refund money

    I picked this word today because today I arranged to send my Macbook Pro back to get a refund. It just crashed way too often.

    货物有损坏,可以要求退钱。
    You can claim your money back if the goods are damaged.

  • 念头

    niàntou - thought, idea

    This is my word for today because Victoria suggested it. It is yet another Chinese word for thought (others including 思想, 想法, 意念, 心思 and 观念). I should probably try to find out the differences between them.

    我们不知道如何说服他放弃这个念头。
    We have no idea how to persuade him to give up the idea.

  • - cut

    I picked this word today because the UK spending cuts were announced and I already know 切. It seems the science got away quite lightly with its budget frozen for four-year. 割 may well not be the right word for a spending cut, but it looks like a useful word nonetheless.

    别让碎玻璃割伤你的手。
    Don't cut your finger on the broken glass.