January 25th, 2009


I started this recent topic about saying 'you're wrong' causing offence to people. The discussion is very interesting and I really appreciate all the answers. Most if not all commenters say the phrase in question does sound, in some degree, rude or confrontational.
Now there's another big question: do you think this is biased due to what kind of people are active in this community? If somebody made an offline survey in some English-speaking country with broad representation of respondents, do you think there'd be a difference?
misc - 月

we differentiations

I'd try to Google this, but I'm not sure what search string to use... Are there any languages that differentiate between the first person plural involving those that the speaker is talking to and those not involved in the conversation? Like "me and you" vs. "me and they"?

Mandarin question

Okay, I'm a relative beginner in Mandarin, but I do know enough to know that most of the Mandarin phrases used in the show Firefly are not all that accurate or realistic. However, I'm not good enough to place exactly what's wrong with them.

For example: Ni ta ma de. Tian xia suo you de ren dou gai si.

This phrase apparently means "fuck you, and damn everyone in the universe to death," or some such, but I'm fairly certain that while ma4 can mean "to curse," it doesn't get used to mean "fuck." And the rest of the sentence I can barely parse.

Can someone tell me what's generally up with Firefly-style Mandarin, and how those sentences really ought to be translated, if they're translatable?

谢谢! (Btw, characters or pinyin are both fine, I just didn't put the above sentences into characters or pinyin because I didn't want to presume what was being aimed for.)
silhouette by the lake
  • eee_eph

Danish -> English

Hello, I am just translating a rather dull text from Danish into English, and the following sentence is driving me mad - I can't seem to place the words in the right order to make any sense in English. Any help appreciated, thank you!

Indenfor fredsforskningen søges der udviklet en vis forskningsstil, præget af at være tværfaglig...

['Within peace studies there is searched for developed a certain research style, marked by being cross-disciplinary...'?!]
  • txmmj


In English, to start a conversation we say things such as:

"How are you" "What's up?" "How have you been lately?" etc.

In japanese, I know how to ask if someone is well. 「お元気ですか」

Also, my one japanese friend said 最近どう? to me, and I aske dwhat it meant. and she said it was like "whats up?" but maybe a more lieral "have are you lately?" is better...?

I don't know. But anyway, I just wanted ot know what Japanese people (or teenagers) usually say when greeting eachother. Just how everyday, in English, we dont say "how have you been?" or "how are you?" if we talked to them not too long up. We would say something like "whats up?" or other varientions... What would the "japanese version" of "whats up?" be? And what would be the appropriate answer(s)?