27 September 2008

Unintentionally Cannibalistic


A few amusing gaffes in Chinese this week. We were discussing food, which is " fàn ". So to describe a particular country's food, it should be "[countryname]fàn". On the other hand, to describe a nationality, it should be "[countryname]rén. So, when you're describing what you like to eat, it's important not to confuse the two. ^/^

We had at least two people make the mistake. The one that I remember was, " Wǒ xǐnghuan chī Fǎguórén". Literally, "I like to eat French people." It should have been " Wǒ xǐnghuan chī Fǎguófàn": "I like to eat French food".

Oh, and I found a site that will convert words into the correct html pinyin if I type the word in and tell it the tone. It required adding three lines of code to the blogger style sheet, which isn't bad at all. At some point, I'll have to figure out how to get actual Chinese characters to display without converting them into picture files, but this is much better than trying to brute-force the tones in.


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