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Lesson Transcript

Eric: Hello and welcome to the Lower Beginner series at CantoneseClass101.com. This is Season 1, Lesson 22, Losing Your Phone in Hong Kong. I’m Eric.
Teddy: 哈囉, 大家好!我係 (haa1 lo3, daai6 gaa1 hou2!ngo5 hai6) Teddy!
Eric: In this lesson, you’ll learn about repetition in Cantonese.
Teddy: The conversation takes place on the street.
Eric: It’s between two friends, Jane and Wendy.
Teddy: And as usual, the speakers will be speaking casual Cantonese.
Eric: Let’s listen to the conversation.
Jane: 哎呀,我個電話唔見咗!(aai1 jaa3, ngo5 go3 din6 waa2 m4 gin3 zo2!)
Wendy: 吓?咁點算?(haa5? gam2 dim2 syun3?)
Jane: 返轉頭搵下啦。(faan1 zyun3 tau4 wan2 haa5 laa1.)
Wendy: 快啲!快啲!(faai3 di1! faai3 di1!)
Eric: Let’s hear the conversation one time slowly.
Jane 哎呀,我個電話唔見咗!(aai1 jaa3, ngo5 go3 din6 waa2 m4 gin3 zo2!)
Wendy 吓?咁點算?(haa5? gam2 dim2 syun3?)
Jane 返轉頭搵下啦。(faan1 zyun3 tau4 wan2 haa5 laa1.)
Wendy 快啲!快啲!(faai3 di1! faai3 di1!)
Eric: Now let’s hear it with the English translation.
Jane 哎呀,我個電話唔見咗!(aai1 jaa3, ngo5 go3 din6 waa2 m4 gin3 zo2!)
Eric: Oh, no! My phone is missing!
Wendy 吓?咁點算?(haa5? gam2 dim2 syun3?)
Eric: Oh? What should we do?
Jane 返轉頭搵下啦。(faan1 zyun3 tau4 wan2 haa5 laa1.)
Eric: Let's go back and look for it.
Wendy 快啲!快啲!(faai3 di1! faai3 di1!)
Eric: Quickly, quickly!
Eric: You know, I have a friend who loses her mobile phone almost every month!
Teddy: Wow, it’ll get very expensive if she has to buy a new phone every month. Has she thought of getting a secondhand one in Mongkok?
Eric: No, she wants to be up with the trends and buy the latest model.
Teddy: I see. My friend told me that he would only buy the newest model so that he wouldn’t have to pay more to exchange it for a more updated phone the next time.
Eric: Well, I have been using my mobile phone for four years, and so far it seems to run well.
Teddy: That’s not the reason most people change their phones, though. Some people store more and more data on their phones, so they require a higher capacity and faster processors.
Eric: It’s really hard to stay current with the new trends in mobile phones. There are new models almost every two months!
Teddy: For some people, that’s the fun part. It’s the new fashion. Okay, now let’s take a look at the vocabulary for this lesson.
The first word we shall see is:
哎呀 (aai1 jaa3) [natural native speed]
Oh, no!
哎呀 (aai1 jaa3) [slowly - broken down by syllable]
哎呀 (aai1 jaa3) [natural native speed]
電話 (din6 waa2) [natural native speed]
電話 (din6 waa2) [slowly - broken down by syllable]
電話 (din6 waa2) [natural native speed]
唔見咗 (m4 gin3 zo2) [natural native speed]
missing, gone
唔見咗 (m4 gin3 zo2) [slowly - broken down by syllable]
唔見咗 (m4 gin3 zo2) [natural native speed]
點算 (dim2 syun3) [natural native speed]
what should we do, how do we cope
點算 (dim2 syun3) [slowly - broken down by syllable]
點算 (dim2 syun3) [natural native speed]
返 (faan1) [natural native speed]
to return
返 (faan1) [slowly - broken down by syllable]
返 (faan1) [natural native speed]
轉頭 (zyun3 tau4) [natural native speed]
to turn back (literally "turn head"), later
轉頭 (zyun3 tau4) [slowly - broken down by syllable]
轉頭 (zyun3 tau4) [natural native speed]
搵 (wan2) [natural native speed]
to look for
搵 (wan2) [slowly - broken down by syllable]
搵 (wan2) [natural native speed]
And Last:
快啲 (faai3 di1) [natural native speed]
quicker, promptly
快啲 (faai3 di1) [slowly - broken down by syllable]
快啲 (faai3 di1) [natural native speed]
Eric: Let’s take a closer look at some of the words and phrases from this lesson. What are we starting with?
Teddy: 點算. (dim2 syun3.)
Eric: What does each word mean?
Teddy: Literally, 點 (dim2) means "how," and 算 (syun3) means "calculate." The two words together imply the question, "What to do?" Or, "How to solve the problem?"
Eric: So can we leave out the subject "we" in "What should we do?" Can we just ask, "What to do?"
Teddy: Yes. 點算 (dim2 syun3) implies 我點算 (ngo5 dim2 syun3), meaning "What should I do?" Or, 我哋點算 (ngo5 dei6 dim2 syun3), meaning "What should we do?"
Eric: Are there other phrases we have learned that are related to these words?
Teddy: Yes, do you remember earlier in this series when we reviewed the interrogative words "how” and "why?"
Eric: Yes, we did that in Lesson 1.
Teddy: "How" is 點. (dim2.) "Why" is 點解. (dim2 gaai2.)
Eric: Yes. These are all question words.
Teddy: 點? (dim2 ?)
Eric: "How?"
Teddy: 點解? (dim2 gaai2 ?)
Eric: "Why?"
Teddy: Very good! We can also say 點做? (dim2 zou6?) That means, "How to do…[something]?" 點做? (dim2 zou6 ?)
Eric: So it’s similar to the phrase we’re learning in this lesson.
Teddy: Yes. 點做 (dim2 zou6) and 點算 (dim2 syun3) are very similar. In Wendy and Jane’s case, they can ask, 點做. (dim2 zou6.) However, 點做 (dim2 zou6) implies a particular action, such as, 點做歌星? (dim2 zou6 go1 sing1 ?) Meaning, "How to be a singer?" And, 點做蛋糕? (dim2 zou6 daan6 gou1?) Meaning, "How to make a cake?"
Eric: And our phrase in this lesson is different?
Teddy: Yes, 點算 (dim2 syun3) is used when you’re in a problem solving situation and need to ask, "Oh, what can we do?" Or, "How do we solve this problem?"
Eric: Would you repeat this phrase?
Teddy: 點算? (dim2 syun3 ?) [pause] 點算? (dim2 syun3 ?)
Eric: Good. What’s the next phrase we’ll look at?
Teddy: 快啲. (faai3 di1.)
Eric: What does this mean?
Teddy: 快 (faai3) means "fast." When we add a 啲 (di1) after the word, it means “faster.”
Eric: So can we say that by adding this suffix to an adjective, it lets us express a higher degree of that adjective?
Teddy: Yes. For example, when we add 啲 (di1) to 好 (hou2), or "good," 好啲 (hou2 di1) becomes "better." When we add it to 大 (daai6), or "big," 大啲 (daai6 di1) becomes "bigger."
Eric: And here we’re talking about speed, faster or quicker.
Teddy: Yes. 快 (faai3). 快啲 (faai3 di1).
Eric: How about telling people to go more slowly, or slower?
Teddy: The opposite of fast 快 (faai3) is slow 慢 (maan6), so "slower" is 慢啲 (maan6 di1).
Eric: Okay, let’s go over them. "Faster!"
Teddy: 快啲! (faai3 di1 !)
Eric: "Slower!"
Teddy: 慢啲! (maan6 di1 !)
Eric: Once more - "Faster!"
Teddy: 快啲! (faai3 di1 !)
Eric: "Slower!"
Teddy: 慢啲! (maan6 di1 !)
Eric: Great! Thank you very much. Let’s quickly go to the grammar point.
Teddy: Ok, 快啲! 快啲! (faai3 di1 ! faai3 di1 !)
Eric: (laughs) Okay, now onto the grammar.

Lesson focus

Eric: Ok, I noticed that you said that two times— faster, faster.
Teddy: Yes. This is what we want to explain in the grammar point in this lesson.
Eric: When you repeat a sentence, what does that mean?
Teddy: It emphasizes the request or the statement.
Eric: We do the same in English. For example, we’ll say, "Don’t! Don’t!" Or, "Stop! Stop!"
Teddy: Yes. 快啲! 快啲! (faai3 di1 ! faai3 di1 !) means "Hurry up! Hurry up!"
Eric: There’s an urgent feeling to this. It attracts the listener to the key issue, and it can also express an alert or emergency.
Teddy: Since Cantonese is a tonal language, sometimes we cannot express urgency simply with the tones we speak. So we use repetition to emphasize importance.
Eric: Can you please give us an example?
Teddy: 點算? (dim2 syun3 ?) [normal] 點算呀? (dim2 syun3 aa3?) [stronger]
Eric: Yes, when we have no idea what to do! You can imagine someone pulling out his or her hair as they speak.
Teddy: Yes. We can repeat all kinds of phrases to show the urgency of the situation.
Eric: Can you give us some words that we have learned in this series and repeat them?
Teddy: Okay, let’s try 邊度. (bin1 dou6.)
Eric: I remember we learned this phrase in Lesson 14. It means "where."
Teddy: 邊度? 邊度? (bin1 dou6 ? bin1 dou6 ?)
Eric: "Where? Where?" You could say this if someone else saw a celebrity on the street and you want to find out where that celebrity is.
Teddy: 嗰度! 嗰度呀! (go2 dou6 ! go2 dou6 aa3!)
Eric: "There! There!" Notice the "aah" at the end? This final particle adds a hint of confirmation in the sentence. As if saying, "It’s there! Can’t you see it?"
Teddy: Exactly! And now, if I want to leave work and start happy hour soon, I’d be saying this to you 快啲! 快啲! (faai3 di1 ! faai3 di1 !)
Eric: "Faster! Faster!" Well, listeners, that’s my cue. Please check out the lesson notes for more examples.


Teddy: ...and we’ll see you in the next lesson. 拜拜!(baai1 baai3 !)
Eric: Cheers everyone!


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