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Lesson Transcript

David: Welcome to chineseclass101.com. I am David.
Echo: Hi, 大家好(Dàjiā hǎo), 我是(Wǒ shì)Echo。
David: Lower beginner, season 1, Lesson 4.
Echo: Showing Your Appreciation in China.
David: Right. So this dialogue, Echo, what’s going on?
Echo: It’s all about appreciation.
David: It’s about gifts. Someone is trying to give someone the gift right? Now we don’t know what this gift is.
Echo: Yeah.
David: It’s like the MacGuffin in Hitchcock movie. So whether it’s a good dialogue or a bad dialogue really depends on what you imagine that this gift is but we are going to leave it up to you and we are just going to go listen and see how they talk about this.
Echo: Right and they are speaking casual Mandarin.
David: Yeah it’s as always. Let’s go.
A: 真是太谢谢您了。(Zhēnshì tài xièxiè nín le.)
B: 不用客气。(Búyòng kèqì.)
A: 应该的,您帮了我大忙。(Yīnggāi de, nín bāng le wǒ dà máng.)
B: 您太客气了。(Nín tài kèqì le.)
A: 这是我的一点心意,请收下。(Zhè shì wǒ de yì diǎn xīnyì, qǐng shōuxià.)
B: 不行不行。(Bù xíng bù xíng.)
A: 请您收下吧。(Qǐng nín shōuxià ba.)
David: Once more a bit slower.
A: 真是太谢谢您了。(Zhēnshì tài xièxiè nín le.)
B: 不用客气。(Búyòng kèqì.)
A: 应该的,您帮了我大忙。(Yīnggāi de, nín bāng le wǒ dà máng.)
B: 您太客气了。(Nín tài kèqì le.)
A: 这是我的一点心意,请收下。(Zhè shì wǒ de yì diǎn xīnyì, qǐng shōuxià.)
B: 不行不行。(Bù xíng bù xíng.)
A: 请您收下吧。(Qǐng nín shōuxià ba..)
David: And now with an English translation.
Echo: 真是太谢谢您了。(Zhēnshì tài xièxiè nín le.)
David: Really, thank you so much.
Echo: 不用客气。(Búyòng kèqì.)
David: Don't be (too) polite.
Echo: 应该的,您帮了我大忙。(Yīnggāi de, nín bāng le wǒ dà máng.)
David: I should, you were such a great help.
Echo: 您太客气了。(Nín tài kèqì le.)
David: You are being too polite.
Echo: 这是我的一点心意,请收下。(Zhè shì wǒ de yì diǎn xīnyì, qǐng shōuxià.)
David: This is a little gift for you, please take it.
Echo: 不行不行。(Bù xíng bù xíng.)
David: No, no.
Echo: 请您收下吧。(Qǐng nín shōuxià ba.)
David: Please take it.
Echo: Well I guess you just take it.
David: Yeah in China, if you don’t take it, they are just going to keep asking you.
Echo: It’s going to be more and more 客气。(Kèqì.)
David: Yeah and while they are saying this actually, what you couldn’t hear is they were putting food on their plate at the same time. So take this gift and eat this food.
Echo: 噢!(Ō!)
David: That’s China but you know it’s good. So our vocab today Echo, what’s it about?
Echo: It’s about 客气。(Kèqì.)
David: It’s about being polite. Let’s get to it.
Echo: 真。(zhēn.)
David: Really
Echo: 真,真,太.... 了。(zhēn, zhēn, tài .... le. )
David: Excessively.
Echo: 太....了, 太 ….了, 不用客气。(tài .... le, tài .... le, búyòng kèqì.)
David: Don’t be polite.
Echo: 不用客气, 不用客气, 应该的。(Búyòng kèqì, Búyòng kèqì, yīnggāi de.)
David: It’s the way it should be.
Echo: 应该的, 应该的, 帮了大忙。(yīnggāi de, yīnggāi de, bāng le dàmáng)
David: To have been a big help.
Echo: 帮了大忙, 帮了大忙, 心意。(bāng le dàmáng, bāng le dàmáng, xīnyì.)
David: Intent.
Echo: 心意, 心意, 请。(xīnyì, xīnyì, qǐng.)
David: Please
Echo: 请,请,收下。(qǐng, qǐng, shōuxià.)
David: To accept.
Echo: 收下, 收下, 不行。(shōuxià, shōuxià, bùxíng.)
David: Not okay.
Echo: 不行, 不行。(bùxíng, bùxíng.)
David: So these words and phrases are powerhouses for when you meet the in-laws.
Echo: Umm…
David: Right. You are going to be giving stuff to them, they are going to be giving stuff to you.
Echo: Right.
David: You are going to hear this on both sides. There is a lot of stuff to talk about here. You know, at the start, we’ve got these two adverb phrases.
Echo: 真。(zhēn.)
David: Really
Echo: And 太....了。(tài .... le.)
David: Right. Extremely. We’ve run into them before but you really are going to use this kind of excessive language.
Echo: Right.
David: When you are giving gifts. Right like oh that’s so polite.
Echo: 真客气。(Zhēn kèqì.)
David: Right or it’s too polite.
Echo: 太客气了。(Tài kèqìle.)
David: Yeah. That’s often leveled as an accusation.
Echo: 您太客气了。(Nín tài kèqìle.)
David: Yeah. There is something wrong with you. You are being so polite. You are being too polite.
Echo: Right or 您太好了。(Nín tài hǎole.)
David: Umm yes when they accept it. Now in the dialogue, we had this line where it – I translated it as you know, don’t be polite.
Echo: 不用客气。(Bùyòng kèqì.)
David: And that’s literally what it means.
Echo: 不用客气。(Bùyòng kèqì.)
David: No use 客气(Kèqì) no use politeness, right.
Echo: Right umm…
David: But it’s not just this, it’s also you are welcome.
Echo: Yes.
David: Right.
Echo: 不用客气 or 不客气 (búyòng kèqì or Bù kèqì)
David: And we’ve heard that before
Echo: 不客气。(Bù kèqì.)
David: Yeah. So if you add the 用(Yòng) here,
Echo: 不用客气。(búyòng kèqì.)
David: You are being even more polite.
Echo: Right while you are saying 不用(Bùyòng) polite.
David: Yes you are supersizing the politeness of the phrase.
Echo: That’s China.
David: Yeah and you know, all of this stuff is really polite. That word, I mean intent.
Echo: 心意。(xīnyì.)
David: Yeah it’s the meaning of the heart.
Echo: Yes 心意.(xīnyì.) So when people give other people gifts, you know, you don’t want to make it too specific. So you say – you don’t say oh, this is your gift. We say, oh this is my 心意。(xīnyì.)
David: Yeah. You don’t want to say I put 10,000 Renminbi in the envelope, you want to say you know…
Echo: 这是我的心意。(Zhè shì wǒ de xīnyì.)
David: This is how I feel, please, please stamp that document quickly. You know, we’ve got 行(Xíng) and we’ve got 不行(Bùxíng) and the other one that we didn’t want to call attention to is to accept.
Echo: 收下。(shōuxià.)
David: Right. To accept.
Echo: 收下。(shōuxià.)
David: Like please take it.
Echo: 请收下。(qǐng shōuxià.)
David: Right and the 下(Xià) there is a bit tricky. You know, you are like teasing….
Echo: Well it’s like the action…
David: Yeah you like to take it and then you accept it because you move your hand down.
Echo: Yeah.
David: Right. Directional complements.
Echo: I am putting in your pocket.
David: Yes and then walk away slowly. So yeah so vocab about being polite, about giving gifts and that is going to take us to our grammar section which is going to be a big help to you.
Echo: Right.

Lesson focus

David: It’s grammar time. Echo, what are we doing in our grammar section today?
Echo: Today in the grammar point, we have a very common but very confusing word 帮忙。(Bāngmáng.)
David: To help a busy.
Echo: 帮忙。(Bāngmáng.)
David: Or to do a favor. Yeah in our dialogue, we saw in this line.
Echo: 您帮了我大忙。(Nín bāngle wǒ dàmáng.)
David: Which is tricky because it’s got split up with all of the stuff going on in the middle.
Echo: Right.
David: Right and that literally means you know, you helped me a really big favor. You did me a big favor, right?
Echo: 您帮了我大忙。(Nín bāngle wǒ dàmáng.)
David: Right. I am glad I didn’t need to go through the inspection.
Echo: So today’s grammar point, we are going to teach you how to split 帮忙。(Bāngmáng.)
David: Right and put stuff in the middle.
Echo: Right.
David: Okay. We’ve got a couple of examples because really this is – it’s a verb and then an object where 忙(Máng) which is not busy here, it’s a favor.
Echo: Right.
David: Right. And so you are helping a favor and we are describing what kind of favor it is…
Echo: Yes.
David: Right in the middle.
Echo: The most common one could be 帮个忙。(Bāng gè máng.)
David: Right which is the measure word 个。(Gè.)
Echo: 个, 帮个忙。(Gè, bāng gè máng.)
David: Right. That sounds funny. It sounds like you know the language is bouncing.
Echo: A little bit yeah. So while you can say 你有时间吗? 帮个忙。(Nǐ yǒu shíjiān ma? Bāng gè máng.)
David: Yes do you have time?
Echo: 帮个忙。(Bāng gè máng.)
David: Yeah. Give me a hand. Not a big deal.
Echo: Now usually this is something small.
David: Yeah.
Echo: Do me a small favor.
David: Yeah it sounds small, it sounds cute even.
Echo: Yeah 帮个忙。(Bāng gè máng.)
David: Yeah. We can change the verb and we can make the verb sound like it’s less of a big deal by adding 一下。(Yīxià.)
Echo: 帮一下忙。(Bāng yíxià máng.)
David: Help me a little bit.
Echo: 帮一下忙。(Bāng yíxià máng.)
David: Right and it’s not a big deal. It’s just going to take a little bit of time.
Echo: Yeah 也是很小的。(Yěshì hěn xiǎo de.)
David: You know, you can specify that it’s – you are the one that’s getting the favor.
Echo: Right 帮我个忙。(Bāng wǒ gè máng.)
David: And if someone has done a big favor for you, you often hear Chinese speakers say
Echo: 您帮了我大忙。(Nín bāngle wǒ dàmáng.)
David: Let’s hear that again.
Echo: 您帮了我大忙。(Nín bāngle wǒ dàmáng.)
David: You helped me a…
Echo: 大忙。(Dàmáng.)
David: Yes big, big favor.
Echo: Right. Don’t forget the 了(Le) after 帮(Bāng)
David: Yes that’s past aspect. It’s been completed. Right, they are saying thank you because you’ve done it.
Echo: Right.
David: Not because you are doing it.
Echo: 帮了我大忙。(Bāngle wǒ dàmáng.)
David: Right. My favorite though is the first one.
Echo: 帮个忙。(Bāng gè máng.)
David: Yeah because it sounds like…
Echo: right ,很可爱。(Hěn kě'ài.)
David: It sounds like it’s bouncing right. You know, just give me your hand.
Echo: Yeah.
David: You know, anyway, with this stuff, there is no rules really to help you, it’s entirely arbitrary.
Echo: Yeah.
David: It’s entirely unfair, it’s not easy to remember but you are going to hear it so much.
Echo: Try to practice them.
David: Practice the first one, its fun but you…
Echo: But don’t always ask for help.
David: You’d say help me and then you say I am just practicing. I just wanted to see – see if you do it. Anyway, I mean this is – you are going to hear this stuff all the time.
Echo: Yes.
David: So it is going to be natural after a period of time and with that though, we are at the end of our show for today.


Echo: Right.
David: Before we let you go Echo, there is something you wanted to remind people.
Echo: That’s right. We would like to 帮你个忙(Bāng nǐ gè máng) if you have any Chinese questions.
David: Right. If your questions aren’t about Chinese, Echo will do her best but we may not be able to answer.
Echo: Yeah we may not be able to 帮忙。(Bāngmáng.)
David: Yes. Just come to the website chineseclass101.com and leave comments on the lesson.
Echo: That’s right.
David: And we are going to get back to you. We love to hear from you and with that though, that’s all the time we have today.
Echo: Yes.
David: From Beijing, I am David.
Echo: 我是(Wǒ shì) Echo。
David: Thanks for listening and we will see you on the site.
Echo: 我们网上见吧!(Wǒmen wǎngshàng jiàn ba!) Bye bye.