Open letter to the Chinese language

simonpettersson
December 04, 2009, 07:40 PM posted in General Discussion

You're afraid, aren't you, Mandarin? You're starting to feel it; the cold sweat trickling down your back. You heard I kicked English's ass already at 12, and you witnessed first hand what I did to French. French is my b*tch now. And I'm coming for you, Mandarin.

I know you fancy yourself the biggest, meanest language in town. I know you beat the snot out of most anyone who comes to take you on. Hell, you even gave me a sound asswhooping once that caused me to give you space for quite some time. But I'm not like the others. I'm not giving up, and with every day I grow stronger. You ain't never met anyone like me, Mandarin. And you're starting to realize it.

Any obstacle you throw in my way, I can overcome. You tried to run, but you could feel me closing in on you. Now you're trying to hide, but I can hear you breathing. I'm coming for you and when I catch up, it ain't gonna be pretty. I'll wrestle you to the ground and beat you into submission. You'll be begging for mercy before this is over, Mandarin.

You've beat me up bad so many times, yet I keep coming back for more, each time a little bit stronger. Because I'm Muy Macho, and I can give as good as I get. You're winning the battles, but I'm winning the war.

You see me coming, don't you? And you're afraid. You should be, Mandarin. You should be.

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christian
December 04, 2009, 08:01 PM

I can imagine you saying this to the mirror every morning à la Taxi Driver...

 

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pretzellogic
December 05, 2009, 02:08 AM

simonpettersson, you should save some of this attitude for the southern-style Kung Fu you're going to take, especially when your shifu has been taking it since he was 5.....

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Tal
December 05, 2009, 02:15 AM

无聊。

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bababardwan
December 05, 2009, 02:42 AM

christian,

hehe,excellent observation.Yeah,classic scene.Looking at that again now it's amazing how young De Niro looks,and for a sec he reminded me of Tom Cruise.

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calkins
December 05, 2009, 02:57 PM

掌聲鼓勵!你學中文的能力令我非常驚訝。我覺得你什麼語言都會學得很好。我希望你到了中國後一切如意。

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RJ
December 05, 2009, 05:51 PM

Simon,

Hmmm, talk to me after you get to Foshan. I have spent some time in Foshan btw and it is a nice place. I like Foshan very much. They do have a marital arts history there. So are you practicing martial arts now, or do you enter Foshan as a novice?

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simonpettersson
December 05, 2009, 06:08 PM

It depends on how you look at it. I've been practicing martial arts for about nine years, so in that regard, I'm not really a novice. However, during these nine years, only six months were spent training wing chun. So with regards to that particular style, I'm still very much a novice. I was, however, very impressed with the style's no-nonsense philosophy and its practice methods. I've long been wanting to reacquaint myself with the style, but there are no teachers in my vicinity.

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RJ
December 05, 2009, 06:15 PM

I would say you are experienced. Good luck with your studies in Foshan. I did post a link to some pictures and videos here that you might find interesting, if you have never seen them.

http://chinesepod.com/community/conversations/post/4945

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John
December 07, 2009, 02:34 AM

Ha ha, great post. The mental game is essential.

加油!

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xiaophil
December 07, 2009, 03:34 AM

This post is really amazing.  I gotta say, though, I don't think Mandarin hears you very well because you ain't speakin' her language.  You gotta imagine the first time the Romans called out to the Gauls to surrender, they had no idea what the other was saying. You have to say it clearly on her turf.  Rewrite it in Mandarin, dude! 哈哈哈

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changye
December 07, 2009, 03:43 AM

Hi xiaophil

I believe that simon will be able to write this letter in good Chinese in one year or so. What an awesome guy he really is!

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ousijia
December 07, 2009, 03:45 AM

Ha great letter! Looking forward to reading the Chinese version :)

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simonpettersson
December 07, 2009, 05:01 AM

Tell you what, xiaophil, I have to go to work now, but before I go to bed tonight, I'll write this up to the best of my ability, without using a dictionary. It'll give me a good measure of where my Chinese is at the moment.

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xiaophil
December 07, 2009, 05:09 AM

加油!

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simonpettersson
December 07, 2009, 09:16 PM

There is no way I have time for this today. Not one way. However, probably tomorrow.

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John
December 08, 2009, 01:46 AM

Simon,

I wrote about this post on my blog.  I hope that's OK!

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xiaophil
December 08, 2009, 01:57 AM

John, that's pretty cool of you.  By the way, I thought it was funny that it mentions you have been in China for 9.3 years.  So exact!  Go ahead--say you have been in China for 10 years.  I think you've earned it.  Haha.

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simonpettersson
December 08, 2009, 03:49 AM

I'm famous!

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Tal
December 08, 2009, 05:52 PM

Hmm... well simon it seems I owe you an apology. My earlier assessment of your post was clearly wrong.

What at first I took to be a piece of vulgar, self-indulgent, juvenile drivel, is actually some kind of sublime 'street poetry', worthy of being praised and immortalised on Teach's blog! Well done old sport!

Now I am indeed breathlessly hoping that Mandarin gets back to you, but if she's really got any class her response may well be an existential silence.

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RJ
December 08, 2009, 07:11 PM

Tal,

So Mandarin is a woman you say. Hmmm, I would have written it differently then. Existential silence indeed. Glad to see you are feeling better.