Episode 5 – Happy Birthday!

“Happy birthday!”:

  • shēng  rì  kuài  lè!(生日快乐!)

“Happy birthday to you!”:

  • zhù  nǐ  shēng  rì  kuài  lè!(祝你生日快乐!)

Sometimes people make fun of close friends by replacing the first character, zhù (祝, wish), with zhū (猪, pig), so the sentence becomes:

“Happy birthday to you, pig!”:

  • zhū  nǐ  shēng  rì  kuài  lè!(猪你生日快乐!)

Happy birthday to myself 🙂

Subscribe in iTunes:

https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/everyday-chinese-expressions/id582096185

Advertisements

Episode 4 – Happy Chinese New Year!

“Happy New Year!” (General):

  • xīn  nián  kuài  lè!(新年快乐!)

“Happy New Year!” (After the New Year has started):

  • xīn  nián  hǎo!(新年好!)

The following phrase, getting rich, is frequently used in conjunction with Happy New Year in Southern China:

  • gōng  xǐ  fā  cái!(恭喜发财!)(Mandarin)
  • gong hei fat choy! (恭喜发财!)(Cantonese)

Subscribe in iTunes:

https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/everyday-chinese-expressions/id582096185

Episode 3 – How are you?

General ways to say “How are you recently?”:

  • zuì  jìn  hǎo  ma?(最近好吗?)
  • nǐ  zuì  jìn  hǎo  ma?(你最近好吗?)
  • nǐ  zuì  zěn  yàng?(最近怎样?)
  • nǐ  zuì  ké  hǎo?(最近可好?)

Between close friends it is common to say “What are you up to these days?”:

  • zuì  jìn  máng  shen me?(最近忙什么?)

To flater someone, you can ask “Where are you getting rich these days?” (informal):

  • zuì  jìn  zài  ná  lǐ  fā  cái?(最近在哪里发财?)

Subscribe in iTunes:

https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/everyday-chinese-expressions/id582096185

Episode 2 – How to Greet a Chinese Man

The formal way to address a Chinese man: xiān  sheng (先生), literally Mr. Can be combined with the person’s family name, e.g. Chén  xiān  sheng  (陈先生), meaning Mr. Chen.

Informal ways to greet a Chinese man:

  • gē  gē (哥哥), literally brother; or gě  gé (written as GG, cute way of saying brother).  Used by girls. Can be flirtitious.
  • dà  gē (大哥), meaning big brother, sometimes implying the leader of a group (such as a gang). Can be used when the age gap is small and you want to show some resepct.
  • péng  yǒu (朋友), literally friend. It is a widely accepted salutation from a foreigner.
  • shī  fu (师父/师傅), literally teacher with emphasis on coaching rather than schooling. Drivers, cooks, and street vendors can be greeted as shī  fu.

Subscribe in iTunes:
https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/everyday-chinese-expressions/id582096185

Episode 1 – How to Greet a Chinese Woman

Never greet a Chinese woman as xiáo  jiě (小姐). It is literally miss, but implies prostitute.

The most fashionable way to greet a Chinese woman is: měi  méi (often written as MM, literally pretty).

A flattering way to address a woman is: méi  nǚ (美女, literally pretty woman).

A polite way to address an elder woman is: nǚ  shì (女士, literally lady), which can be combined with her family name, for example lǐ  nǚ  shì.

Subscribe in iTunes:
https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/everyday-chinese-expressions/id582096185