Carl’s Top 100 Chinese Words – Part 2

Words chosen in this post

26. 搭讪 dāshàn, 27. 走光 zǒuguāng, 28. 默认 mòrèn, 29. 领情 lǐngqíng, 30. 碰头 pèngtóu, 31. 坦率 tǎnshuài, 32. 打量 dǎliang, 33. 拜托 bàituō, 34. 发福 fāfú, 35. 山寨 shānzhài, 36. 靠谱 kàopǔ, 37. 郁闷 yùmèn, 38. 有种 yǒuzhǒng, 39. 臭美 chòuměi, 40. 无奈 wúnài, 41. 陶醉 táozuì, 42. 陪衬 péichèn, 43. 委屈 wěiqu, 44. 任性 rènxìng, 45. 忐忑 tǎntè, 46. 体会 tǐhuì, 47. 啰嗦 luōsuo, 48. 熬夜 áoyè, 49. 下海 xiàhǎi, 50. 灿烂 cànlàn

26. dāshàn

to strike up a conversation with sb
他经常在酒吧主动与陌生女孩搭讪。He often strikes up conversations with strange women in bars.
大街上有人和你搭讪聊天时你要警惕。Be wary of people who try to strike up conversations with you on the street.

27. 走光 zǒuguāng

to expose one’s body; to flash
不要穿迷你裙,很容易走光。Don’t wear a mini-skirt, you may have a wardrobe malfunction.
今天风很大,穿裙子小心走光哦。It’s windy today. If you wear a skirt be careful not to flash everyone.

28. mòrèn

to acknowledge or agree to sth without saying anything; to agree tacitly; to have an “understanding”
你不回答我我就当做你默认了。If you don’t reply to me I’ll have to assume we have a tacit understanding.

29. lǐngqíng

to appreciate the kindness of others
孩子往往对父母的关爱不领情。Children never appreciate the concern of their parents.
我领你这个情。I appreciate what you’re trying to do.
哥哥,你的情我领了。Brother, I’m grateful for what you’ve done.

30. pèngtóu

1. to hit one’s head
墙太矮,当心碰头。Ceiling is low, watch your head.
2. to meet up with someone
那天我和李强走了个碰头。I met up with Li Qiang that day.
3. to run into trouble
你这么不小心,早晚有一天要碰头。If you’re not careful, one day you’ll run into some trouble.

31. 坦率 tǎnshuài

frank and straightforward; open and forthright
你总说实话,真坦率。You’re always honest, and very frank and straightforward.
大家都喜欢坦率的人。Everyone likes people who are open and forthright.

32. 打量 dǎliang

1. to size sb up; to inspect sb closely
我上下打量了这个人,一身的名牌啊。I looked the guy up and down and noticed that all the clothing he was wearing were brand names.
2. to guess; to figure
我打量你也不敢去。I guess you dare not go.

33. 拜托 bàituō

1. please…; I was wondering… (used to politely request help from sb)
我想拜托你帮我买件衣服。I was wondering if you could help me buy an item of clothing.
2. please! (used in desperate situations)
拜托,不要再骂我了。Please! Don’t yell at me.

34. 发福 fāfú

(euphemism) to put on weight
他结婚之后发福了。He put on weight after he got married.
Notes:
* Often used to refer to older people.
* The concept of 发福 goes back to older times in China when putting on weight was a sign of prosperity.

35. 山寨 shānzhài

1. (original meaning) mountain village; mountain stronghold; the mountain stockades of regional warlords or bandits far away from official control
这个山寨好偏僻啊 This mountain stronghold is very remote.
2. (new slang meaning) imitation pirated brands and goods; Chinese knock-offs; counterfeit consumer goods
这是个山寨版手机。This mobile phone is a knock-off.
中国有很多山寨版的iPad。China has many knock-off iPads.
Note:
* The slang meaning can also sometimes be extended to refer to parody or imitation TV shows or movies.

36. 靠谱 kàopǔ

reliable; steady
这个生意很有市场,我看挺靠谱。This business is very marketable, I think it’ll be quite steady
这个人三天打鱼两天晒网,真不靠谱。This person is too lazy to perservere, and very unreliable.
这事让他去办,靠谱儿。Get him to take care of this, we can count on him.
Note:
* See also the related expressions 离谱 (“to go beyond accepted social standards”), 摆谱 (“to put on airs”) and 没谱 (“1. clueless 2. unreliable”)

37. 郁闷 yùmèn

depressed; frustrated; gloomy; down
每天都下雨出不了门真郁闷。It’s been raining every day so I can’t go outside. I’m so depressed.
考试总是不及格真郁闷。I’m down because I always fail my exams.

38. 有种 yǒuzhǒng

to have guts/balls/courage; to be brave
零下40多度的天气,他还敢去冬泳,真有种呀!He dares to go swimming at minus 40 degrees in winter. He’s sure got balls!
Note:
* The expression is literally made up of 有 (“have”) and 种 (“seed”).

39. 臭美 chòuměi

vain; smug
她每天都要在镜子前打扮很多次,好臭美的。Every day she stands in front of the mirror and puts on tons of makeup. She’s so vain.
Note:
* The expression is literally made up of 臭 (“stinky”) and 美 (“beautiful”)

40. 无奈 wúnài

having no options; desperate; helpless
我虽然很讨厌加班,但是碍于公司的规定不得不加,无奈极了。Though I hate doing overtime, my company’s policy says I have to do it. I’ve got no choice.

41. 陶醉 táozuì

to be infatuated with; to be drunk or enchanted with; to revel in
别自我陶醉了。Don’t be so up yourself.
我陶醉在这美妙的歌声中。I’m fascinated by this beautiful tune.
聆听天籁之音,我彻底陶醉了。I was utterly enchanted by the divine music.

42. 陪衬 péichèn

1. to serve as a contrast; to set off; to serve as a background in order to bring out the subject with greater brilliance
绿叶陪衬红花。The green leaves bring out the red in the flowers.
2. foil (a person or thing which contrasts with and so enhances the qualities of another)
主角是他,我们只是个陪衬。He’s the lead, I’m just his foil.

43. 委屈 wěiqu

1. to feel hard done by; to feel as if one has been wronged
我的作品被剽窃了,但是没有证据,委屈死了。My work has been plagiarised but I don’t have any proof, it’s so unfair.
每个人都说这事是我做的,好委屈啊。Everyone says I did it, it’s so unfair.
2. to put sb to inconvenience
委屈你先起来给老人让个坐。Could you please offer your seat up for the elderly?
来到寒舍没有什么可招待你, 委屈你了。You’ve come here to my humble abode but I’ve nothing with which to welcome you, my apologies.

44. 任性 rènxìng

headstrong; willfull; his/her way or the highway
她是个很任性的人。 She’s very willfull.
要为别人考虑,别太任性。You should be considerate of others, and don’t be so headstrong.

45. 忐忑 tǎntè

absent-minded, unstable and timid; nervous
考试的日子越来越接近,我的心情也越来越忐忑。I’m getting more and more nervous as it gets closer to exam time.
我忐忑不安地走进他的办公室。I nervously entered his office.
老板昨晚打电话给我说今天要找我谈谈,我现在很忐忑不安啊!Last night my boss rang me and said he wanted to have a talk with me today. I’m freaking out a bit!

46. 体会 tǐhuì

to learn through experience; to understand; to appreciate; to realise
有了小孩的人更能体会爹妈的不易。Those who have children can realise the troubles parents face.
对于老师今天给你们说的话,你们在以后的学习中可以慢慢体会。The things that your teacher told you today you will be able to learn about in your future learning.
一定要用心,才能体会到小说里面的奥妙。Only if you pay attention carefully will you be able to figure out the mysteries of this novel.

47. 啰嗦 luōsuo

1. (of writing) long-winded; wordy; verbose [formal] (adj.)
这篇文章啰哩啰嗦的不知道在讲些什么。This article is too long-winded, I don’t know what it’s going on about.
2. (of a person) garrulous [formal]; talkative (adj.)
他这个人很啰嗦。He has a big mouth.
3. (of a person’s action) to ramble; to yap; to go on and on (v.)
别啰嗦了,烦死了。Quit your yapping, it’s so annoying.

48. 熬夜 áoyè

to stay up late; to burn the midnight oil
你太能熬夜了!You always stay up too late!
欧洲杯期间,我天天熬夜看球赛。I stay up late every day of the European Cup to watch it.
你看你的黑眼圈这么明显,是不是昨晚又熬夜了呀?Check out the circles underneath your eyes. Did you stay up again late last night?

49. 下海 xiàhǎi

1. (literally) to go to sea
初次下海,头晕呕吐是难免的。Those who step aboard a ship for the first time often end up feeling nauseated and vomiting.
2. (figuratively) to leave one’s job and start up a business
他离开政府之后就下海经商了。He left his job in the government and started his own business.
改革开放初期他父亲下海经商,现在已经成为百万富翁了。At the beginning of China’s reforms and opening up, his father left his job and became a businessman. Now he’s a millionaire.

50. 灿烂 cànlàn

1. having a wide variety; plentiful; abundant
云南因民族众多,所以有灿烂文化。Yunnan has a wide variety of cultures since it is home to a large number of ethnic minorities.
2. bright; shining
今天阳光真灿烂啊。The sun is shining brightly today.
3. happy; pleased; smily
你怎么笑得这么灿烂啊?What are you smiling about?
你这小样儿,给你点阳光你就灿烂啊!Boy, I’ll give you something to smile about!

4 Comments to "Carl’s Top 100 Chinese Words – Part 2"

  1. Tom's Gravatar Tom
    07/08/2012 - 12:38 pm | Permalink

    Hi Carl,

    Just want to say I really enjoy reading your posts when they appear in my RSS feed. For a long-term and lazy/passive Chinese language student, they are the perfect length, scope. accessibility to almost always draw me in for the length of the post. Also, I’m impressed that you find so many topics that remain relevant to daily use even for more advanced students. Especially love the ones that parse out similiar words that I always “know” but realize I’m using incorrectly (e.g. 11 words for “indeed”). Thanks again for spending the time doing all this!

    Tom

  2. 07/08/2012 - 10:02 pm | Permalink

    I learnt 碰头 as meaning to have a meeting to discuss something. 你们俩先碰一下头决定怎么做。

  3. daoyang's Gravatar daoyang
    03/12/2012 - 2:42 am | Permalink

    Hey Carl,
    About “很忐忑不安” (#45): are you sure you can adverbially qualify a 成语 with the likes of 很, 非常, etc.? I thought that was a no-no.
    Cheers,
    D

  4. Gordon's Gravatar Gordon
    21/03/2014 - 11:10 pm | Permalink

    走光是不是也可以译为wardrobe malfunction?

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