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Thursday, April 17, 2008

200th post!

Wow, two hundred posts here on Matt's Myth! Well, what can I say? It's been a helluva ride, huh folks? FOUR MORE YEARS! FOUR MORE YE-

Well, not in China, anyway.

I actually just popped in to berate myself (and the approximately zero other people who read this thing who find Chinese language lessons interesting) for writing a bit of the song that my students taught me incorrectly. I wrote:

快 / Pao de kuai / Basically this makes no sense.

When I should have written:

快 / Pao de kuai / Quickly run.

So maybe this can be a glimpse into the special madness that is learning Chinese. The words I used are both pronounced "de," same sound, same tone (well, lack to tone, actually), and both are used commonly. The first de (的) is the attributive for a noun, kind of like Spanish: 我的大衣, Wo de dayi, my coat (the coat of mine). The second de (得), the correct one for the song, is a complement of result or degree, like 跑得快, pao de kuai, running quickly, or 说得好, shuo de hao, speak well. It's not unique to Chinese I'm sure, but it's a huge pain in the ass to have so many vitally important bits of speech sound exactly alike.

Wow, that's about as dry as a celebratory 200th post can get. I promise I'll be back soon with something good for post 201.


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