Dialogue

Vocabulary

Learn New Words FAST with this Lesson’s Vocab Review List

Get this lesson’s key vocab, their translations and pronunciations. Sign up for your Free Lifetime Account Now and get 7 Days of Premium Access including this feature.

Or sign up using Facebook
Already a Member?

Lesson Notes

Unlock In-Depth Explanations & Exclusive Takeaways with Printable Lesson Notes

Unlock Lesson Notes and Transcripts for every single lesson. Sign Up for a Free Lifetime Account and Get 7 Days of Premium Access.

Or sign up using Facebook
Already a Member?

Lesson Transcript

INTRODUCTION
David: Hi everyone. Welcome to chineseclass101.com. I am David.
Echo: Hi! 大家好,我是(Dàjiā hǎo, wǒ shì)Echo.
David: And welcome back to chineseclass101.com. Today we have absolute beginner season 2 lesson 8.
Echo: Excuses for being late in China.
David: Right. This is a lesson that talks about what happens when you are late for work.
Echo: And this conversation takes place inside an office
David: Right and we’ve got a dialogue here between an upset boss and an employee who is a bit tardy.
Echo: Right. The speakers are co-workers. So they are speaking casually.
David: Right. So we’ve got the dialogue. We are going to go there in a sec. Before we do, we want to remind you, we’ve got a premium RSS feed you can se. You get all of these lessons automatically loaded on your iPod or your iPhone.
Echo: Yes, very, very convenient.
David: Yeah if you haven’t checked that out, go to the site or send us an email and we are going to help you set it up.
Echo: That’s right.
David: For now though, let’s go to the dialogue.
DIALOGUE
A: 你迟到了!(Nǐ chídào le!)
B: 我没有, 还早呢。(Wǒ méiyǒu, hái zǎo ne.)
A: 现在几点?(Xiànzài jǐdiǎn?)
B: 哦……迟到了。(O ......chídào le.)
David: One more time, a bit slower.
A: 你迟到了!(Nǐ chídào le!)
B: 我没有, 还早呢。(Wǒ méiyǒu, hái zǎo ne.)
A: 现在几点?(Xiànzài jǐdiǎn?)
B: 哦……迟到了。(O ......chídào le.)
David: And now with the English.
A: 你迟到了!(Nǐ chídào le!)
A: You're late.
B: 我没有, 还早呢。(Wǒ méiyǒu, hái zǎo ne.)
B: No, I'm not. It's still early.
A: 现在几点?(Xiànzài jǐdiǎn?)
A: What time is it right now?
B: 哦……迟到了。(O ......chídào le.)
B: Oh. I'm late.
POST CONVERSATION BANTER
David: I think what surprises a lot of westerns who are new to China are the working hours here.
Echo: Yeah it isn’t usually 9 to 5.
David: Yeah working hours are usually 9 to 6.
Echo: Even later.
David: Yeah they pack in more hours here. In Hong Kong actually it’s even worse. People will work until 7 or 8 in the evening every day.
Echo: But you know everyone in Asia works really hard.
David: Well it may make a difference that people also don’t commute as much as people back home do. So people won’t spend two hours just driving from home to work every day.
Echo: Wow, they maybe spend two hours on the subway.
David: Yeah it depends what you do. Anyway, our vocab today is all about being late for work. Let’s hope you don’t get to use it that often.
Echo: Yeah.
VOCAB LIST
David: And now the vocab section.
Echo: 迟到(chídào)[natural native speed]
David: to be late
Echo: 迟到(chídào) [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Echo: 迟到(chídào) [natural native speed]
Echo: 还(hái) [natural native speed]
David: still
Echo: 还(hái) [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Echo: 还(hái) [natural native speed]
Echo: 早(zǎo) [natural native speed]
David: early
Echo: 早(zǎo) [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Echo: 早(zǎo) [natural native speed]
Echo: 现在(xiànzài) [natural native speed]
David: right now
Echo: 现在(xiànzài) [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Echo: 现在(xiànzài) [natural native speed]
Echo: 几点(jǐdiǎn) [natural native speed]
David: what time
Echo: 几点(jǐdiǎn) [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Echo: 几点(jǐdiǎn) [natural native speed]
VOCAB AND PHRASE USAGE
David: Let’s have a closer look at the usage for some of these words and phrases.
Echo: The first word we are going to cover comes directly from the dialogue [*]
David: To be late.
Echo: 迟到(chídào)
David: Right. So that’s second tone, fourth tone. Can we hear it slowly again?
Echo: 迟到(chídào)
David: So if you are late to work, you can say this.
Echo: 对不起,我今天迟到了.(Duìbùqǐ, wǒ jīntiān chídàole.)
David: Sorry, today I am late.
Echo: 对不起,我今天迟到了.(Duìbùqǐ, wǒ jīntiān chídàole.)
David: Sorry I am late today.
Echo: Yeah and if 你每天迟到(Nǐ měitiān chídào) you have a problem.
David: Right. That’s what your boss might say if it’s a chronic issue. Let’s hear it again.
Echo: 你每天迟到(Nǐ měitiān chídào)
David: You are late every day.
Echo: 你每天迟到(Nǐ měitiān chídào)
David: Right but somehow your boss is around or he doesn’t have a watch. So you can try this.
Echo: 还早呢(Hái zǎo ne)
David: It’s still early.
Echo: 还早呢(Hái zǎo ne)
David: It’s still early. Now we know the first two words here.
Echo: 还(Hái) is an adverb.
David: It means still.
Echo: 还(Hái)
David: And it’s still
Echo: 早(Zǎo)
David: Early.
Echo: 早(Zǎo)
David: Early.
Echo: 还早(Hái zǎo)
David: Still early.
Echo: 还早呢(Hái zǎo ne)
David: What does that na do at the end?
Echo: 呢(Ne) is just to soften the intonation there.
David: Okay.
Echo: Because you are talking to your boss and you don’t want to be you know...
David: It’s not too confrontational.
Echo: That’s right.
David: Okay so one more time, you can say it’s still early.
Echo: 还早呢(Hái zǎo ne)
David: So this is useful stuff and you can use it at work setting too because it’s casual. So if you are going to the airport and everyone is panicking but you got plenty of time, you can say to your friends
Echo: 别着急,还早呢(Bié zhāojí, hái zǎo ne)
David: Don’t be so anxious. It’s still early.
Echo: 别着急,还早呢(Bié zhāojí, hái zǎo ne)
David: Right. Okay the last two words we want to emphasize are really, really common too.
Echo: Right 现在(Xiànzài)
David: That means right now.
Echo: 现在(Xiànzài)
David: Listen again. Both of these characters are fourth tone.
Echo: 现在(Xiànzài)
David: They drop.
Echo: 现在(Xiànzài)
David: Right now. So we put this after our subject in sentences.
Echo: Like 我现在很忙(Wǒ xiànzài hěn máng)
David: I am really busy now.
Echo: 我现在很忙, or 我现在很饿.(Wǒ xiànzài hěn máng, or wǒ xiànzài hěn è.)
David: I am really hungry now.
Echo: We do this for all time words, like 你昨天迟到了(Nǐ zuótiān chídàole)
David: You were late yesterday.
Echo: 你昨天迟到了.(Nǐ zuótiān chídàole.)
David: Don’t be late tomorrow.
Echo: Right 你明天别迟到.(Nǐ míngtiān bié chídào.)
David: Right and we hope you don’t have to use it too often.
Echo: That’s it. Let’s get to the grammar section.
David: Okay.

Lesson focus

David: Our grammar focus for this lesson is the adverb.
Echo: 还(Hái)
David: This means still or as before.
Echo: 还(Hái)
David: We put this in front of verbs or adjectives.
Echo: 还早(Hái zǎo)
David: No I am not. It’s still early.
Echo: 我没有, 还早呢.(Wǒ méiyǒu, hái zǎo ne.)
David: Okay we have run into adverbs before. So this grammar point is pretty straightforward. Let’s jump right to some sample sentences.
Echo: Yeah. 别着急,还有时间。(Bié zhāojí, hái yǒu shíjiān.)
David: Right. Don’t be anxious, there is still time.
Echo: 别着急,还有时间。(Bié zhāojí, hái yǒu shíjiān.)
David: Don’t be anxious. There is still time. In our vocab section, we learned another way of saying that. Do you still remember it?
Echo: 别着急,还早呢.(Bié zhāojí, hái zǎo ne.)
David: Right. Note that our word order here is exactly the same as in English.
Echo: 我还要上课(Wǒ hái yào shàngkè)
David: I still want to go to class.
Echo: Yeah we are in need, 我还要上课.(Wǒ hái yào shàngkè.)
David: I still want to go to class. I still need to go to class.
Echo: 我还要上课.(Wǒ hái yào shàngkè.)
David: Okay. What if we want to put these sentences in the negative?
Echo: We will add 不 or 没(Bù or méi) after 还(Hái). For example, 我还没迟到.(Wǒ hái méi chídào.)
David: I am still not late.
Echo: Make sure don’t use 了(Le) after it.
David: Right because we’ve got may. So it’s past tense.
Echo: 我还没迟到.(Wǒ hái méi chídào.)
David: I am still not late. What if you wanted to say, I am still not busy?
Echo: 我还不忙.(Wǒ hái bù máng.)
David: I am still not busy.
Echo: 我还不忙.(Wǒ hái bù máng.)
David: So we are sticking 还(Hái) in front of our verb and we are just making the verb negative.
Echo: Right.
David: Okay nothing too confusing here.
Echo: 他还听不懂中文.(Tā hái tīng bù dǒng zhōngwén.)
David: He still doesn’t understand Chinese.
Echo: Right. 他还听不懂中文.(Tā hái tīng bù dǒng zhōngwén.)
David: He still doesn’t understand Chinese.
Echo: But not you guys?

Outro

David: Right. If you have any questions or problems though.
Echo: Write to us at contactus@chineseclass101.com.
David: Yeah and we would love to hear from you. Lesson ideas, suggestions on features you would like to see are also very welcome. From our studios in downtown Beijing, I am David.
Echo: 我是(Wǒ shì)Echo.
David: We will see you on the site.
Echo: 网上见,再见.(Wǎngshàng jiàn, zàijiàn.)

13 Comments

Hide
Please to leave a comment.
😄 😞 😳 😁 😒 😎 😠 😆 😅 😜 😉 😭 😇 😴 😮 😈 ❤️️ 👍
Sorry, please keep your comment under 800 characters. Got a complicated question? Try asking your teacher using My Teacher Messenger.

ChineseClass101.comVerified
Monday at 6:30 pm
Pinned Comment
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

Hi ChineseClass101.com Listeners! Are you generally late, on time, or early?

ChineseClass101.com
Friday at 6:52 pm
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

Hello Dennis,


Both 现 and 在 are equally important, in a real life natural conversation, I would say that the 在 is not stressed, and has the neutral tone. Combining with the natural speed of speech, it may feel like the 在 is not there. Depending on the context, the listener would know the speaker means "now" and would be able to catch the non stressed 在.


Hope it helps, let us know if you have any questions.


Ngai Lam

Team ChineseClass101.com

Dennis
Thursday at 6:58 pm
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

On another topic, this lesson's third line drove me crazy. Until I looked at the printed dialog, I had no idea that the speaker began the line with 现在。More to the point, I might have figured out the 现 if I had been able to hear an articulated 在。(All I got was a low volume grunt where the 在 was (should have been). I do understand that one strategy of 101 is to allow students to hear "real life" pronunciation, rather than always hearing perfect pronunciation. Therefore, my real question is one of volume. My brain thinks that the 现 and the 在 are equally important here and should be of equal volume. However, would the native speaker assume that the listener will expect to hear the "now" and, therefore, feel the 在 is not necessary to hear? (I realize that I might have opened up a larger topic.)

ChineseClass101.comVerified
Monday at 9:43 pm
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

Hi, Bèiqí,


Yes, you are right.

对不起,我还听不懂。= I’m sorry, I still don’t understand (what you say).

So if you still can not read, it should be "对不起,我还看不懂。"

听 and 看 is usually be used for “listen” and “read, watch”.


Cho

Team ChineseClass101.com

Bèiqí
Sunday at 11:29 am
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

对不起,我还听不懂。(Duìbùqǐ, wǒ hái tīngbùdǒng).


Is that the correct way to say "I'm sorry, I still don't understand"?

ChineseClass101.comVerified
Wednesday at 1:39 am
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

Hi, RyeBlossom,


To be late, do you mean "迟到(chí dào)"?


迟到 is an adjective.

In English, to be late, there is a "be" before the adjective, late.

But in Chinese, we don't use "be", so the sentence "Don't be late." changes into "别迟到(don't late)", though "late(迟到)" is still an adjective.

Actually, 迟= late, 到= arrive, so 迟到= arrive lately, it is an adjective phrase.


Cho

Team ChineseClass101.com

RyeBlossom
Monday at 11:14 pm
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

Is "to be late" a verb?

ChineseClass101.comVerified
Tuesday at 11:39 pm
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

Hi Scott,


Yes, you can say 还早啊 (hái zǎo a), it means "it's still early (no need to rush)" :wink:


Olivia

Team ChineseClass101.com

Scott
Tuesday at 6:51 am
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

可不可以说: 还早啊


Could you also say hai2 zao3 a to soften the tone? I thought a was more for exclamation or enthusiasm but an earlier lesson said it's for softening as well.

ChineseClass101.comVerified
Tuesday at 7:11 pm
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

Hi Eddie,


Are you trying to say "I'm not late"? If so, that should be 我没迟到.


Echo

Team ChineseClass101.com

Eddie
Thursday at 5:51 pm
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

Would it be incorrect to respond

我不迟到了 (wo3 bu4 chi2 dao4 le5)


If so, why (or is it just too "wordy" - it seems Chinese seems to rely a lot on context - the 没有 "not to be" is assumed to refer to the lateness asserted by the other party).