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grant
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Postby grant » Tue Apr 27, 2004 7:15 am

I recently came to the conclusion that Bahasa Malaysia would make an ideal online language, but I can't for the life of me remember why.

In Mandarin, "dong" is winter, but long is trickier. According to this dictionary here, you've got many words with subtle differences in use and meaning. I'm most inclined to use "jiu" which means "a long time," although "chang" is generally used for length, and "chang jiu" means "for a long time." There's an argument for "you" (pronounced "yo" up high, as if you've just been surprised), since it means "long in time" as well as "sad," but I think the connotation of "chang" is better, since it's the "long" used in "The Long March" (Chang Zheng).

The pluralizing is stubborn, and I don't entirely understand it (this post itself is an exercize in thinking aloud). It *will* use the measure-word "tiao," I'm fairly sure, which is the same word you use when discussing ribbons or roads. So, and this is just a barely educated guess, Ta-men dong-tiao shih chang jiu would be the way to say "Those winters are long," I think (the tiao may not be necessary, or may be misplaced).

But I know one could easily use "Long Winter" to mean one or many of the same thing, so economically, the band name should be:
Chang Jiu Dong, or even simpler, Chang Dong.

The pronunciation would be Chang? - as if asking a question, Jiu...! - as if making a salacious comment (OooooOOooo!), and Dong - up high and level, as if you've just spotted a tiger prowling around the perimeter of your camp and the rifle is back in the tent on the other side of the clearing.

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Postby LoveSickJerk » Tue Apr 27, 2004 8:00 am

I wish my french teacher described pronounciation like that. I might have had an easier time of it.

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Postby grant » Tue Apr 27, 2004 12:47 pm

Ah, but pronunciation with the Western European languages is all essentially about choking on various items or substances, some of which shall not be named here because this is not an adults-only board, and some of which are foods or drinks.

In my experience, much of German can be replicated by an English speaker sitting down to a meal consisting of a particularly sharp, fizzy beer, a large, grilled bratwurst, several slices of blutwurst and some exceptionally sharp mustard. For Spanish, substitute dulce de leche for the sausages and Jerez brandy for the beer. If the Spanish is Castillian, add a loosely hand-rolled cigarette.

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Postby Harvey Winters » Tue Apr 27, 2004 1:37 pm

This is awesome!!!!

Harvey "Cuidado"...

hahahahahahaha!!!!!

I'm such a dork....
Last edited by Harvey Winters on Fri Dec 22, 2006 10:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Postby LoveSickJerk » Wed Apr 28, 2004 4:18 am

grant wrote:Ah, but pronunciation with the Western European languages is all essentially about choking on various items or substances, some of which shall not be named here because this is not an adults-only board, and some of which are foods or drinks.

In my experience, much of German can be replicated by an English speaker sitting down to a meal consisting of a particularly sharp, fizzy beer, a large, grilled bratwurst, several slices of blutwurst and some exceptionally sharp mustard. For Spanish, substitute dulce de leche for the sausages and Jerez brandy for the beer. If the Spanish is Castillian, add a loosely hand-rolled cigarette.


I'm sure it would have made a better time of it, considering the way you described it again. She was pretty hot.
You're like batman, with a utility belt of diction. I'm wondering where you get all of those wonderful toys.

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Postby anthropomorphizing_kitty » Wed Apr 28, 2004 7:20 am

Actually "cuidado" means "danger" in the sense of a warning, like you might see it on a warning sign. Harvey Danger would actually be Harvey Peligro.

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Postby grant » Wed Apr 28, 2004 9:31 am

Younger brother of the Dead Kennedys' drummer?

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Postby mms » Wed Apr 28, 2004 10:39 am

grant wrote:I recently came to the conclusion that Bahasa Malaysia would make an ideal online language, but I can't for the life of me.


Oh, wow! You know Malay, Grant? Seriously?! How and why?

grant wrote:But I know one could easily use "Long Winter" to mean one or many of the same thing, so economically, the band name should be:
Chang Jiu Dong, or even simpler, Chang Dong.

The pronunciation would be Chang? - as if asking a question, Jiu...! - as if making a salacious comment (OooooOOooo!), and Dong - up high and level, as if you've just spotted a tiger prowling around the perimeter of your camp and the rifle is back in the tent on the other side of the clearing.


Very valiant effort, Grant, but I have it on good authority (since most of my fellow econ nerds are from PRC) that TLW would translate as:

Man(4) Chang(2) De(1) Dong(1) Tian(1)

The numbers in parentheses indicate the tone of the word (on a 4-tone scale for Mandarin). But I love the way Grant accurately described the pronunciation of the tones!

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Postby grant » Wed Apr 28, 2004 11:11 am

mms wrote:
grant wrote:I recently came to the conclusion that Bahasa Malaysia would make an ideal online language, but I can't for the life of me.


Oh, wow! You know Malay, Grant? Seriously?! How and why?


No, I don't actually know how to speak it. (As close as I come is telling people trying to sell me things "Jalan, jalan!" in Bahasa Indonesia.)

It was a conversation about net languages, about Mandarin in specific being the "home language" of, possibly, the majority of computer users in five or 10 years. The problem with pinyin is that tone business.

I know what Bahasa *looks* like, though, and have read that the grammar is fairly simple, especially compared to English. I think my reasoning went something like it would be the easiest to learn to type because of the way syllables are broken up without any weird dipthongs. But I honestly can't remember.

mms wrote:Very valiant effort, Grant, but I have it on good authority (since most of my fellow econ nerds are from PRC) that TLW would translate as:

Man(4) Chang(2) De(1) Dong(1) Tian(1)

The numbers in parentheses indicate the tone of the word (on a 4-tone scale for Mandarin). But I love the way Grant accurately described the pronunciation of the tones!


So Man Chang for "long" and Dong Tian for "winters"?

What to the De and the Tian do? (And, for that matter, the Man?) Is that the same Tian that means "Heaven"? Is the De a possessive?

Sorry if this bores anyone else, but I really get excited by it.

Oh, and for the record, a 4th-tone Man would be uttered as if you had a barely-trained Doberman Pinscher named "Man" who started lunging at a friend of yours and you wanted to keep him in check. I think. "Man! Heel! Sit, Man, sit!"

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Postby Harvey Winters » Wed Apr 28, 2004 1:44 pm

anthropomorphizing_kitty wrote:Actually "cuidado" means "danger" in the sense of a warning,
like you might see it on a warning sign.
Harvey Danger would actually be Harvey Peligro.


So, like "Harvey Cuidado" is:
"Look out for/beware of Harvey"?
OR
"Look out, Harvey, here comes trouble"?

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Postby anthropomorphizing_kitty » Wed Apr 28, 2004 1:54 pm

well if you were to say "Harvey, cuidado" that would be like "be careful, Harvey".
If you were to say Cuidado Harvey, that would be more like "be careful of Harvey"

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Postby mms » Fri Apr 30, 2004 6:02 pm

grant wrote:So Man Chang for "long" and Dong Tian for "winters"?


Exacto mundo! Man, you're good at stripping foreign words.

grant wrote:What to the De and the Tian do? (And, for that matter, the Man?) Is that the same Tian that means "Heaven"? Is the De a possessive?


Yes, the De is a possessive in Mandarin. Tian literally translates as day or sky/heaven (very good!!!) or season in this case. Do you have a working knowledge of Mandarin or are you cheating by looking up the words in a dictionary? I dunno what the Man means/does. Will ask my Chinese friends.

grant wrote:Sorry if this bores anyone else, but I really get excited by it.


Why the interest in foreign languages? Have you lived in Indonesia and/or Malaysia?

grant wrote:Oh, and for the record, a 4th-tone Man would be uttered as if you had a barely-trained Doberman Pinscher named "Man" who started lunging at a friend of yours and you wanted to keep him in check. I think. "Man! Heel! Sit, Man, sit!"


Good one, Grant!

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Postby Joy » Sat May 01, 2004 5:11 pm

mms wrote:I dunno what the Man means/does. Will ask my Chinese friends.


I'm not sure about what the 4th tone thing is (any idea which tone it corresponds to in pinyin?), but I'm guessing "Man" means "pretty" (as in "pretty good"). I would translate The Long Winters as Chang De Dong Tian.

German is Die lange (or langdauernde) Winter.

Oh yeah. First post. Gonna go see 'em in San Fran with the Decemberists. Woohoo!

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Postby grant » Mon May 03, 2004 6:47 am

mms wrote:
grant wrote:What to the De and the Tian do? (And, for that matter, the Man?) Is that the same Tian that means "Heaven"? Is the De a possessive?


Yes, the De is a possessive in Mandarin. Tian literally translates as day or sky/heaven (very good!!!) or season in this case. Do you have a working knowledge of Mandarin or are you cheating by looking up the words in a dictionary? I dunno what the Man means/does. Will ask my Chinese friends.


I keep forgetting that an "e" in Mandarin is pronounced more like an "uh" in English.

I know yi diar Putonghua from CDs and from a trip last year, so my spelling is generally atrocious, and my vocabulary is very limited, but I have a sense for the grammar (if I take things very slowly). I also know a few religious terms, since that was my first introduction to the language (thus, I can recognize tian ming, the rule of Heaven... or Tiananmen, the "Gateway to Heaven"). I didn't know it could apply to weather, although that makes perfect sense in English.

Wo shua-de bu hao.


grant wrote:Sorry if this bores anyone else, but I really get excited by it.


Why the interest in foreign languages? Have you lived in Indonesia and/or Malaysia?


No, although I traveled through Indonesia & spent a night in KL (should have been longer). That time, I was traveling with my sister, who had just finished a year teaching English in Taiwan, so had plenty of stored up cash to spend meandering around Asia.

More recently, however, I've taken a much more personal interest in the PRC, its history and more specifically, one of its daughters.

grant wrote:Oh, and for the record, a 4th-tone Man would be uttered as if you had a barely-trained Doberman Pinscher named "Man" who started lunging at a friend of yours and you wanted to keep him in check. I think. "Man! Heel! Sit, Man, sit!"


Good one, Grant!


If I don't visualize these things, the whole system comes crashing down inside my head.

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Postby grant » Mon May 03, 2004 6:53 am

Joy wrote:
mms wrote:I dunno what the Man means/does. Will ask my Chinese friends.


I'm not sure about what the 4th tone thing is (any idea which tone it corresponds to in pinyin?), but I'm guessing "Man" means "pretty" (as in "pretty good"). I would translate The Long Winters as Chang De Dong Tian.


4th is the one that looks like this:` placed over the vowel. The short descender.

How many translations do we have for the band now?
Any designers dreaming up T-shirt layouts?

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Postby Moni » Mon May 03, 2004 8:21 am

Joy wrote:
German is Die lange (or langdauernde) Winter.



die langen Winter :)
German grammar is a bitch...

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Postby Joy » Mon May 03, 2004 1:11 pm

grant wrote:4th is the one that looks like this:` placed over the vowel. The short descender.


Ah, I see. I asked my mom, and she said 'man' is supposed to just emphasize "chang." So it would most likely be "Man chang de dong tian."

Liz wrote:die langen Winter :)
German grammar is a bitch...

Liz, you are right! German grammar really sucks sometimes...

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Postby mms » Mon May 03, 2004 5:48 pm

Joy wrote:Ah, I see. I asked my mom, and she said 'man' is supposed to just emphasize "chang." So it would most likely be "Man chang de dong tian."


Yor mom is great! Thanks for clearing that up.

grant wrote:Wo shua-de bu hao.

Ni shua-de hern hao.

I'm actually illiterate in Chinese (I can speak it but not read or write it, only 1R!), eventhough I'm ethnically Chinese. 3 generations in Malaysia is enough to beat the Chinese pinyin out of a girl!

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Postby mms » Mon May 03, 2004 6:15 pm

grant wrote:More recently, however, I've taken a much more personal interest in the PRC, its history and more specifically, one of its daughters.


Awww... Sophia is a beautiful baby, Grant! Why did you choose Flower as a middle name?

Keep up the Mandarin lessons. It's an immensely useful language to know. And when Sophia gets older, you both can attend proper Chinese calligraphy classes. Don't let the difficulty of the written language deter you. My Dad stopped teaching us kids because we bitched and sulked about how difficult it was to write in Mandarin. And that's why I'm an illiterate Chinese person. Yes, I feel shame, but I promise to take up Mandarin again once I'm out of graduate school!

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Postby grant » Tue May 04, 2004 7:08 am

Being in China gave me a new empathy for the plight of illiterates everywhere... relying on restaurants for food and being unable to even begin to read a menu is very, very humbling. I did pick up a couple of characters: bei, jing, zhong, guo... the ones used in place names, on road signs and in company names.

We chose "Flower" as a middle name in part because my sister's Chinese name (given her by an acupuncture instructor) is Mei Hua (pretty flower), but mostly because Sophia's older brother (now 10) launched a massive campaign to use Flower as a first name. He's very persuasive, and refused to accept Flora or Fleur as a substitute, but was, in the end, resigned to seeing his choice fade into middle name status. (I have to admit a perverse joy in using the abbreviation for "sound effects" as a monogram, also.)

I'd love to learn some calligraphy -- there's a class not far from here I intend to use later on. For now, I occasionally browse http://www.zhongwen.com, which is an amazing database for all things written in Chinese.

Anyway, just to keep this from being all about me, me, me (as much as I enjoy this), here's the list of translations thus far:

Pitkä Talvis (Finnish)
Lange Vinterne (Danish & Norwegian)
Die Langen Winter (German)
De Lange Winters (Dutch)
An Fad Geamhradh (Gaelic-singular)
Los Inviernos Largos (Spanish)
Les Hivers Longues (French)
Lungo Vernos (Italian)
Musim-musim sejuk yang panjang (Malaysian)
Man Chang De Dong Tian (Mandarin)
Refu Majira Va Baridi (Swahili)


And
Long Winters (American Sign Language)


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