Summer fare in Chengdu
As we move into Autumn, it is time to reflect on summer in Chengdu … and in particular the eating. Cold Chinese food is the hardest to get used to – it just looks unappetizing at first glance. All that meat sitting outside, looking far too much like the animal it was before being cooked, legs sticking up, kind of yellowing. It’s grotesque! And there is no menu to read from. But then something happens inside you. You see all these people lining up and tucking in, and you dip a toe in. Next thing you are an aficionado.
Imagine a conversation which goes something like this:
A: Whew! It is so HOT in Chengdu in summer – how can those people eat hotpot?
B: We don’t much, most of us eat cold food in summer.
A: You mean that food sitting on display outside all day? That can’t be healthy! I’m not sure if it is even hygienic.
B: Come on, don’t be a pussy. Don’t you eat food outside in Australia in summer? With all those flies?
A: In Australia we often have a bar-b-que in summer, sitting out in the backyard, or on the deck. We grill snags and chops and bugs and prawns … and kebabs of course. Beautiful!
B: Sounds awful – are they like … insects?
A: It’s meat of course; we eat it with green salad. Then we have a pavlova and fruit salad for sweets.
B: Well this is Chengdu. Let’s try some cold dishes together. We’ll have the snake beans, the shredded potato, and … the lotus root. It’s just done with garlic and chilli – very fresh tasting. What about a big plate of cold pork ribs? And you must have the rice porridge to wash it all down.
A: Er, I’m not sure about this. … Actually, this tastes pretty good. Hmm, it tastes very good! I’m sorry I didn’t get on to this earlier!
---ooo---Any poddies have summer food experiences they would like to share?
pretzellogicAugust 30, 2012, 05:47 AM
For discussion's sake, one of B's sentences contains a word i've never seen in Chinesepod lessons before.... that would be a great line for Sunix. Who would squirm more about explaining it, Jenny or Dilu?
who is Sunix? He is a "very famous" cpod IT guy and voice actor, known for his unique style and accent. He was profiled here
He was even complimented by some guy named bodawei. Must have been the other bodawei :-)
Ill let Pretzel answer your other question. Im not touching it.
Oh yeah ... I'm a bit slow.
I knew I should remember that, his English name, how very IT. He is great - I still like his voice the best; well Connie and Sunix come in neck and neck (and I hope I haven't offended anyone.) Yes, Sunix could do an admirable job as B. He'll have to be a knowledgable migrant from Shanghai, come to cash in on the high tech opportunities in this burgeoning city. Escaping to where the food and lifestyle is just so tempting.
So now I see that it can't be 'pavlova' and it must be 'pussy', which in English means a weak-minded wimp. Perhaps a 懦夫 nuo4fu1 - yes, a 4th tone, first tone word will show off his talents beautifully. Liddle bewdy.
I can't think what you guys were thinking ... :)
Glad to hear your memory is OK. You know what they say about memory loss. Anyway, you will have to ask PL about the other comment. I had never heard of "Pavlova". (Evidently it is a meringue-based dessert, with a crisp crust and soft center, named after the Russian ballet dancer Anna Pavlova.) Interesting, but sounds somewhat like a disease to untrained ears perhaps. Or maybe your second guess is more on target.
bodawei, pardon me if I'm completely overlooking a sarcasm signal and that you totally get this, but to me this is looking like a case of imperfectly understood American slang that I think we can rectify. Please allow me to horn in to help! I use veryvulgar language in front of my elderly (and slightly deaf) mother often enough that it bothers her some, but with her in the room I would not use that word to express a lack of courage, no matter how deaf she gets.
The significance of the term isn't that the wimp is being compared to an adorably timid kitty cat; he's being compared to lady parts. One lady part specifically. In a way that belittles his manhood and expresses a bit of contempt for lady parts. So technically it's both very obscene and slightly misogynistic, though the misogyny is mostly in origin and not really in intent in current usage.
If we were to be unfair and ask one of the hosts to address this charming piece of lexis, I'd prefer it be Dilu. Jenny excels at politely shutting things down (that microsecond pause before saying “不可能吧！”）but Dilu expresses "disapproval" (way too strong a word, but I can't think of a better one) in a way that is, I think, rather playful. I always get a kick out of it when she begins hinting that she's a bit exasperated, and John cheerfully but very quickly lets go of whatever topic he's bugging her with. It's a fun feature of their dynamic together.
Well this is going in directions I did not anticipate ... :)
And by the way Rachel, thanks for the tutorial.
I was hoping for a discussion about cold Chinese food and so far noone has taken the bait.
But to clear the air - I see now that the word has many meanings, but in my experience in Australia it is not used as a vulgar insult (that is interesting!) - my son calls me a pussy all the time. Oh wait, maybe it IS a vulgar insult. No ... I'm pretty sure that in Australia it is a slightly humorous (and common son-father) insult that even your mother could cope with. [Digression: What is it about protecting your mothers and grandmothers in the US?? (I've had this conversation her before on ChinesePod.) Don't mothers and grandmothers get to swear in America? Assuming they do, how do they get to learn the latest words if you don't swear in front of them? I'm wondering if it is that Americans started as Puritans and we started as low-down uncouth flea-ridden convicts. With hearts of gold.]
I don't want to get technical, because I can't, but I don't think the word - used as a mild insult as in my dialogue - is mysogynist in origin, but then I only have Wikipedia to go on. Certainly they cannot decide with certainty that it is. But I have to accept that Americans may consider it as insulting for women ... gee you guys are weird. :)
By the way, you refer to this as 'American slang' - which is in itself ambiguous - but, you do know that America does not own this word, right? It was in use well before America was invented. You have just borrowed it, and if you don't behave properly we will take it back from you. ... ;)
what SF_Rachel said, except she said it better than I could have. I would have tried to be funny and failed miserably. I need dinners with George Carlin, Richard Pryor and Bill Cosby sooner than later.
'ask one of the hosts to address this charming piece of lexis'
This is a great idea. I have been thinking about writing my dialogue in Chinese (in fact I should have started with Chinese, but by that time it would be half way through Autumn) but i would struggle with the idioms - maybe we should ask ChinesePod teachers to provide a translation of some of the more challenging phrases!
"I was hoping for a discussion about cold Chinese food and so far noone has taken the bait."
I was curious about your post. You started waxing eloquent about food. FOR the record, i'm not against food lessons on Cpod. My thinking that with about 160 or so lessons specifically on food, that maybe its time to focus on other subjects that have had less treatment (like calling a locksmith for example). I was not going to discuss food, but I got to a specific line in your dialogue, and the rest is history.
"What is it about protecting your mothers and grandmothers in the US?"
I can't speak for everyone else, but in my case it's not protecting her, it's protecting me. There's only so much motherly disapproval I can take without melting down.
"and if you don't behave properly we will take it back from you. ... ;) "
Oooh, can I interest you in repossessing this one sooner rather than later?
Question: Name some people, living or dead, that you'd like to have dinner with. My answer: George Carlin, Richard Pryor and Bill Cosby, Wes Montgomery, Lyle Mays, Herbie Hancock, Socrates, Galileo, Copernicus, Jet Li, the Wright Brothers, Mike Collins (the astronaut), the first guy that made and used fire, the first farmer.....
"but in my experience in Australia it is not used as a vulgar insult"
I beg to differ mate. I know exactly the meaning that you are referring to, but I would cringe a little if this was used in polite company due to it's association with the meaning Rachel is referring to.
Maybe this is something that's changing in our respective countries baba. I've been away from UK for 6 years now so maybe it has a stronger meaning now. I'm back for a few days next week so will give it a spin and see what reaction it illicits...