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Lesson Transcript

David: Welcome to chineseclass101.com. I am David.
Echo: Hi, 大家好, 我是Echo。(Dàjiā hǎo, wǒ shì Echo.)
David: And we are here today with lower beginner, season 1, Lesson 13.
Echo: A Chinese Invitation.
David: Right, our dialogue today, its casual Mandarin as always. Echo, what’s happening?
Echo: A friend got invitation from another friend.
David: Yeah. Maybe they are more than just friends. We are going to let you decide. Let’s get to the dialogue.
Echo: Sounds great.
A:我想请你吃晚饭。(Wǒ xiǎng qǐng nǐ chī wǎnfàn.)
B:好呀,什么时间? (Hǎo ya, shénme shíjiān?)
A:你什么时候方便? (Nǐ shénme shíhòu fāngbiàn?)
B:这周末? (Zhè zhōumò?)
A:星期六晚上行吗? (Xīngqīliù wǎnshàng xíng ma?)
B:没问题。(Méi wèntí.)
David: Once more, a bit slower.
A:我想请你吃晚饭。(Wǒ xiǎng qǐng nǐ chī wǎnfàn.)
B:好呀,什么时间? (Hǎo ya, shénme shíjiān?)
A:你什么时候方便? (Nǐ shénme shíhòu fāngbiàn?)
B:这周末? (Zhè zhōumò?)
A:星期六晚上行吗? (Xīngqīliù wǎnshàng xíng ma?)
B: 没问题。 (Méi wèntí.)
David: And now with an English translation.
Echo: 我想请你吃晚饭。(Wǒ xiǎng qǐng nǐ chī wǎnfàn.)
David: I want to treat you to dinner.
Echo: 好呀,什么时间? (Hǎo ya, shénme shíjiān?)
David: Sure, when?
Echo: 你什么时候方便?(Nǐ shénme shíhòu fāngbiàn?)
David: When will you be free?
Echo: 这周末? (Zhè zhōumò?)
David: This weekend?
Echo: 星期六晚上行吗?(Xīngqīliù wǎnshàng xíng ma?)
David: How about Saturday night?
Echo: 没问题。(Méi wèntí.)
David: No problem.
David: So if you are inviting your friend in for dinner, this lesson is for you or lunch.
Echo: Yeah.
David: Or brunch.
Echo: Yeah just try to pull out of the question more like straightforward.
David: So this lesson is for you if you are inviting your friend to breakfast or lunch or dinner.
Echo: Lunch first.
David: Any meal, it doesn’t matter. You can use the vocab.
Echo: 没错。(Méi cuò.)
David: Let’s get to that now.
Echo: 晚饭。(Wǎnfàn.)
David: Dinner.
Echo: 晚饭,晚饭,午饭。(Wǎnfàn, wǎnfàn, wǔfàn.)
David: Lunch.
Echo: 午饭,午饭,时间。(Wǔfàn, wǔfàn, shíjiān.)
David: Time.
Echo: 时间, 时间, 方便。(Shíjiān, shíjiān, fāngbiàn.)
David: Convenient.
Echo: 方便,方便,周末。(Fāngbiàn, fāngbiàn, zhōumò.)
David: Weekend.
Echo: 周末,周末,星期六。(Zhōumò, zhōumò, xīngqíliù.)
David: Saturday.
Echo: 星期六, 星期六,晚上。(Xīngqíliù, xīngqíliù, wǎnshàng.)
David: Evening.
Echo: 晚上,晚上,没问题。(Wǎnshàng, wǎnshàng, méi wèntí.)
David: No problem.
Echo: 没问题,没问题。(Méi wèntí, méi wèntí.)
David: Okay. There is a lot of useful vocab here but the most interesting word comes in that third line in the dialogue, when will you be free?
Echo: 你什么时候方便? (Nǐ shénme shíhòu fāngbiàn?)
David: When will you be free?
Echo: 你什么时候方便? (Nǐ shénme shíhòu fāngbiàn?)
David: And Echo, you are smiling at me because you know where this can go.
Echo: Yeah. Don’t think too much.
David: What can we say about 方便。(Fāngbiàn.)
Echo: Well 方便 (Fāngbiàn) has different meanings.
David: It has several. It’s a great – it’s a really great word. Here it means convenient.
Echo: 方便。(Fāngbiàn.)
David: So although we translated it as when will you be free, really he is asking,
Echo: 你什么时候方便?(Nǐ shénme shíhòu fāngbiàn?)
David: When is good for you. Right?
Echo: 你什么时候有时间? (Nǐ shénme shíhòu yǒu shíjiān?)
David: Yeah or 你什么时候有空? (Nǐ shénme shíhòu yǒu kòng?) right. So there are a couple of different ways of doing it. You know, it means you know, when do you have time?
Echo: Okay however 方便还有一个意思。 (Fāngbiàn hái yǒu yīgè yìsi.)
David: It’s got several meanings.
Echo: 还有一个主要的意思。(Hái yǒu yīgè zhǔyào de yìsi.)
David: I know what you are thinking of. I think the more common one is for convenience, you will often hear people talk about convenient stores.
Echo: Ah 方便店。(Fāngbiàn diàn.)
David: Convenient stores.
Echo: 方便店。(Fāngbiàn diàn.)
David: Right.
Echo: And we were not thinking about the same thing.
David: You are not thinking about that. I am also thinking of Ramen noodles.
Echo: Umm 方便面。(Fāngbiànmiàn.)
David: Which are convenience noodles.
Echo: 方便面。(Fāngbiànmiàn.)
David: Yeah and Echo, you get the last one.
Echo: Okay 方便还有一个意思, 就是一个 (Fāngbiàn hái yǒu yīgè yìsi, jiùshì yīgè) a polite way to say that you want to go to the washroom.
David: Yes.
Echo: So you can say 不好意思, 我要方便一下。(Bù hǎoyìsi, wǒ yào fāngbiàn yīxià.)
David: I am sorry. I need to convenience a little bit.
Echo: Yeah 不好意思, 我要方便一下。(Bù hǎoyìsi, wǒ yào fāngbiàn yīxià.)
David: And listen to the way Echo adds that 一下. (Yīxià.) It makes it sound maybe a bit cuter.
Echo: Yeah more polite.
David: Yes polite and cute. One more time.
Echo: 方便。 (Fāngbiàn.)
David: Right. So that’s the most interesting word that we’ve got. There are a couple of others that are really useful here.
Echo: Yeah.
David: We’ve got dinner.
Echo: 晚饭。(Wǎnfàn.)
David: Lunch
Echo: 午饭 。(Wǔfàn.)
David: And we left out breakfast, right?
Echo: 早饭。(Zǎofàn.)
David: There is one more too which is a late night snack.
Echo: Wooh! 夜宵。(Yèxiāo.)
David: Yeah that comes from Cantonese.
Echo: Yeah 对, 夜宵。(Duì, yèxiāo.)
David: Right and you know, otherwise this is pretty simple stuff. I think it’s a good reminder with days of the week that it’s easy in Chinese. You need to count from 1 to 6.
Echo: 星期一, 星期二, 星期三 , 星期四 , 星期五, 星期六。(Xīngqí yī, xīngqí'èr, xīngqísān, xīngqísì, xīngqíwǔ, xīngqíliù.)
David: Right but then the last day is tricky. So if you have a date on Sunday, it’s
Echo: 星期天或者星期日。(Xīngqítiān huòzhě xīngqírì.)
David: Yeah. Either week sky or weekday.
Echo: 星期天, 星期日。(Xīngqítiān, xīngqírì.)
David: That really doesn’t make sense because it’s week day in English and weekday in – okay anyway, let’s get to our grammar point.
Echo: Okay.

Lesson focus

David: It’s grammar time. Okay our grammar point today is about the subtleties of asking for things. And when you are going to be paying for them.
Echo: That’s right.
David: Echo, we are going to talk about which character.
Echo: 请。(Qǐng.)
David: To invite.
Echo: 请, 我想请你吃晚饭。(Qǐng, wǒ xiǎng qǐng nǐ chī wǎnfàn.)
David: I want to invite you to have dinner.
Echo: 我想请你吃晚饭。(Wǒ xiǎng qǐng nǐ chī wǎnfàn.)
David: I want to invite you for dinner. Now we’ve seen this before meaning please.
Echo: 唔, 请让一下。(Wú, qǐng ràng yīxià.)
David: Please let me pass.
Echo: 请让一下。(Qǐng ràng yīxià.)
David: Yeah.
Echo: Or 请坐 (Qǐng zuò)
David: Please sit, yeah. In this situation though, it doesn’t mean please. You are asking for someone…
Echo: It’s a verb here.
David: It means to invite.
Echo: Yeah.
David: Right. And one of the more subtle points is if you invite someone to dinner
Echo: 我想请你吃晚饭。 (Wǒ xiǎng qǐng nǐ chī wǎnfàn.)
David: If you invite someone to a movie.
Echo: 我想请你看电影。(Wǒ xiǎng qǐng nǐ kàn diànyǐng.)
David: Or if you invite someone for coffee.
Echo: 我想请你喝咖啡。(Wǒ xiǎng qǐng nǐ hē kāfēi.)
David: Who pays?
Echo: 我。 (Wǒ.)
David: Yes if you 请 (Qǐng) someone to do anything, you are paying.
Echo: 没错。(Méi cuò.) Don’t forget that and that’s the Chinese culture.
David: Yeah because they will leave their wallet at home. I’ve had people do that actually.
Echo: 真的? (Zhēn de?)
David: Yeah.
Echo: 哎唷! (Āi yō!)
David: You know, it is a bit rude because you offer to pay and you will expect them to kind of offer and you are like, no, no, no, no it’s on me 我请客 (Wǒ qǐngkè) but yeah I have had people leave their wallet at home. So make sure you have enough cash if you are going to seeing someone to do anything.
Echo: That’s right.
David: Okay. Pretty simple grammar point.
Echo: Yeah sometimes you can just say 我请你。(Wǒ qǐng nǐ.)
David: Yeah you don’t need to specify. That’s just I am treating you.
Echo: Yeah.
David: And you may need to insist several times in China.
Echo: Umm…
David: Yeah. I think three times is pretty much standard.
Echo: Yeah.
David: Okay anyway, now you can go in and invite anyone you want to, any meal of the day, even a late night snack.
Echo: 对, 夜宵。 (Duì, yèxiāo.)


David: Tasty. Okay and that’s our lesson for today. We hope you enjoyed it. If you have any questions or comments, before we go, we should mention. We have a website and an email address
Echo:唔, 没错 你可以在我们的网站留言 (Wú, méi cuò nǐ kěyǐ zài wǒmen de wǎngzhàn liúyán) which is chineseclass101.com or send your email to contact us at chineseclass101.com
David: Yes love e-mail, hate e-mail. We like to know what you guys are thinking and if you have suggestions, let us know.
Echo: Or if you want to 请我们吃饭 (Qǐng wǒmen chīfàn) we are happy to hear that too.
David: Echo is always happy. She would like to be treated. Thanks for listening though and we will see you guys on the site.
Echo: Bye bye.