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发布时间:2015-08-10 浏览次数:3713
For non-native speakers, the Chinese language can often be quite frankly baffling. Don’t worry, though—it seems many Chinese people can’t keep up either. (Bodes well for the rest of us, I know.) Today, the use of the character and evolution of the language is rapidly being shaped by elements of modern society, one huge factor being the internet and social media.

New patterns of speech amongst younger users has recently come to light as a source of confusion. We are specifically talking about a range of three-character sets forming a phrase. These have appeared in abundance when telling stories or commenting on online trends for example. These phrases predominantly aim to poke fun and join in the fast-flowing online chatter—the banter.

These three character phrases have been dubbed ‘The New Three Character Classics’《新三字经》 by observers—referring to a Classical Chinese text written by a Confucian scholar, and is something of a ‘Confucian Roadmap’ for kids. Essentially, it contains a poem written as a series of couplets of three characters. Within this short piece are embedded all the essential values of Confucianism which the little learner would then carry with him for life.

These new ones, however, are not quite what I’d call Confucian. Scathing wit is a little more like it. Here are a few examples:

1. 然并卵 Rán bìng luǎn
Rough meaning: ‘So there’s really not that much to it’

Use: Used to comment on something that seems like quite a futile exercise. 卵 literally means ‘egg’ but has long been as a derogatory term.

Example application: The recent ‘Skinny test’ which involves trying to reach around and touch your belly button. Seen it? You’re not missing much if not. There’s really not that much to it.

2. 腿玩年 Tuǐ wán nián
Rough meaning: ‘Those legs will give me enough fun for years!’

Use: To refer to legs which are particularly attractive.

Example application: The Beautiful Leg competition. Fairly self-explanatory.

3. 裤脱看 Kù tuō kàn
Rough meaning: ‘If I took off my trousers would you still make me watch that?’

Use: To express outrage at having to have watched something

Example application: After being made to watch a bad film. Autobots, maybe?

These are only a few of many, can you find any more? Surprising how much can be expressed in only three characters, isn’t it?

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