Nov 28, 2008

A "Talk With The World" contributor dancing...

Maaf kalau sudah terlalu lama baru saya ada di situs ini - sibuuuuk sekali.

(Sorry if I haven't been to this site in quite awhile - I've been really busy.)

Ya, saya baru datang dari pentas yang saya lakukan di luar California. Saya menari tarian Bali yang sangat tradisional. Tarian ini berjudul Topeng Keras: topeng berarti "mask", dan keras berarti "strong; tough".

(Alright, I've just come from a performance that I did outside of California. I danced a very traditional Balinese dance. The name of this dance is Topeng Keras: topeng means "mask", and keras means "strong; tough".

Tarian ini menggambarkan seorang patih yang keras. Dia baik cepat marah maupun bergerak hatinya. Topengnya dicat dengan cat berwarna coklat tua atau merah; warna tersebut melambangkan sifatnya orang yang cepat marah.

(This dance portrays a strong prime minister. He is quick to anger, as well as impulsive. The mask is painted either a dark brown or red; those colors represent a person who gets mad easily.)

Selamat menonton!
즐겁게 보세요!

Nov 27, 2008

Christmas Video idea?

Hey guys! I'm sending this message to all my language friends. What do you guys think of all of us making a video together of us singing parts of Christmas songs from around the world? For example...

Santa Claus is Coming to Town

You better watch out, you better not cry
You better not pout, I'm telling you
Santa claus is coming to town

(I can't type Japanese for some reason right now)

Ne kikoetekuru desho
Suzuno negasugosokoni
Santa Clause is coming to town

잠잘 때나 일어날 때
Jam jal Ddae na ir eo nal ddae

짜증낼 때 장난할 때도
Jjajeungnael Ddae Jangnan hal Ddae do

산타할아버지는 모든 것을 알고 계신대
Santa halaboji neun mo deun goseul al go gye shin dae

J’ai vu dans la nuit passer un traîneau
Et j’ai vu aussi ton très grand ami
Le Père Noël arrive ce soir

Nov 25, 2008

a question on japanese culture

Hello friends!

I was just wondering about something to do with the Japanese culture. We've got family friends who come from Japan and sometimes when they give us gifts, they wrap it up with a piece of cloth.

Now we're in quite a dilemma. We don't know if the cloth is meant to be returned or not. My mum was speculating about returning it being rude like it probably means we don't want to be friends anymore or something like that so we're still keeping the cloth. But I think it's quite weird that we're not returning the cloth .. It looks expensive anyhow.

Anyone knows the answer to this? Thanks a bunch.

Nov 13, 2008

My Sky.

This is the way my sky looks. I'm curious to see what your sky looks. The sky that soars above us, all over this world.

So when you watch this video, I would really appreciate it if you made a video response showing all of us "

It would be awesome if you did your video in as many languages as you can, but if you can only do English (or your mother language), that is fine.

Thank you for watching!

Song used: Final Fantasy X-2 Piano Collections - Eternity ~ Memories of Lightwaves ~

Nov 6, 2008

chinese characters

This post is inspired by Nick's post about Chinese characters.

I think to most people learning Chinese, the hardest part about learning is probably the characters. After all, there are like zillions of characters I guess. I don't even know them all. I don't think anyone does.

But we sort of came up with a way to overcome this problem. Like they say, when there's a will, there's a way. True enough, some genius out there invented this saying:

有边读边, 没边读上下. (you3 bian1 du2 bian1, mei2 bian1 du2 shang4 xia4)

It basically means "if there's a side of the character, read the side, otherwise, read the top or the bottom of the character".

In Chinese, every part of the character is not pointless. In case you're wondering why certain words are formed this way or that ..

Let's take a look at this character - 饼 (bing3)

This character means 'biscuit' in Chinese, and look at the formation of the character. I can't really highlight it here because the computer doesn't allow me to highlight only a part of a Chinese character but anyways, the left part of the character is what we call a 'side', and it usually describes the characteristic of the Chinese character. For this character, the 'side' is a 'food side'. Any word that comes along with this 'side' is usually related to food.

Next, let's check out the other side of the character. That is pronounced as 'bing4'. Notice the link? ;)

Yes, the other side of the character usually aids in the pronounciation. Although not exactly similar, it helps, somehow. When you think of a food that sounds like 'bing4' what would you think of? Biscuits (bing3) of course! ;)

This is highly useful especially when you're trying to read something to someone and suddenly stumble over some words you don't know. I remember we use to use this trick back in school when we go for reading examinations; we always guess and then pretend we are coughing to cover up for our ignorance.

It doesn't work everytime of course! So the best way to learn Chinese characters is still the conventional way, memorise!

I hope this helps.

Test for 漢字

I was wondering how to native speakers of Chinese test their 漢字 knowledge. In Japan, they have this test called the 日本漢字能力検定 which is divided into 12 levels, 1 being the highest. This test isn't compulsary, but it does help in school entrance exams and looks good on your resume. I'm taking the test next February just to give it a go... Most Japanese people only need to pass level 2 (1945 characters - same as Level 1 of the JLPT). I think Korea has a similar test...한국한자능력검정 (韓國漢字能力檢定)

So as I was saying, I was wondering if there is a similar test in Taiwan, Hong Kong, mainland China or Singapore...

Nov 3, 2008

Korean handwriting :)

This is a short video introducing how I write "안녕하세요" in handwriting ^_^