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Teacher Beth
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Please can you help me understand 三八 in this context. Please can you help me understand 三八 in this context. Can anyone tell me what 三八 means in this context? A young aspiring actress orders fried rice from a older female street seller she clearly knows well. The lady gives her extra food on top of the rice and tells the young girl it is her treat. The young girl tries to say she shouldn't eat that much as she is trying to lose weight. The seller tells her she has no reason to lose weight and tells the girl to come talk to her when she has finished eating and then walks away. The younger girl calls her back and thanks her, to which the seller replies '三八啦, 这又不是什么了不起的东西。你还那么客气干什么? The only info I can find about 三八 is that it is a vulgar, derogatory word to describe women, but that doesn't seem to fit here. (The full dialogue can be found about 25 minutes into the 3rd episode of 《偷心大圣 PS男》
Oct 26, 2016 11:28 PM
Answers · 15
Obviously you are watching a soup opera TV series from Taiwan, I will try to explain it to you from my perspective. "三八" is used to refer to women because 8th March is the Internional Women's Day. Since you mentioned that these two women know each other so well, I'd say they are friends. You know when you are good friends like Max and Caroline (《Two broke girls》) , you get to say mean, vulgar, derogatory words all the time. Because that's what friends do, they joke a lot as they have a much closer thing than with most other ramdon people. Here you can't translate “三八啦” as the normal way, gotta add some scenario like "bitch, just shut up and eat before I change my mind." without actually thinking about changing the mind. Hope my answer is clear enough for you.
October 27, 2016
“三八”并不是一个很强烈的骂人的词,所以,骂人时往往加上一个“臭”字,“臭三八!”。 很简单,“三八”就是“三月八号”,是妇女节,因此用“三八”代表“妇女、女人”,因此,骂人三八,不外乎就是在骂你这个女人,“臭三八”也就是“臭女人”的意思。 不管是人们对女人的偏见也好,还是什么也好,女人还是有一些缺点的,(为了不引起女性同胞的愤怒,加一句,男人也有许多缺点),比如爱唠叨,斤斤计较之类,有时比较矫情等等,所以有个词叫“婆婆妈妈”的。 这句话中的“三八啦”,意思也就是说“你又象个女人一样矫情了,婆婆妈妈了”,为什么这么说呢,因为后面的话已经很明白了,“又不是什么了不起的东西”,也就是“不用客气”,如果你不需要客气的时候表现出很客气,对于朋友来说,那就叫“见外”,所以“三八啦!”就带有这么一点小小的责怪口气,“你太见外了吧,象个女人一样,一点了不起的东西还那么在意,还用那么客气”
October 27, 2016
Simply explaining, for me, I would NOT like to say this word to people. I think it is a little rude. Not so much, it is still could make people feel unhappy, specially for ladies. However, this word could be used between friends. For the movie what you saw is not standard Mandarin. If I were you, I prefer to find some movies or shows in which use more common Mandarin to learn Chinese. Because what you want to learn is mandarin Chinese, right? Just personal advise.
October 27, 2016
November 1, 2016
Hi Jorge. As a Cantonese, I can assure that you got it wrong in this context. Though 38 most often refers to 'bitch' as a noun, but in this context it should be a verb meaning the girl was being too polite to a friend and nagging too much. And this usage as a verb is not as offensive as 'bitch' in English. But when it's used as a noun, it's just offensive as 'bitch'. And 38 is only said in mandarin, not in cantonese---HK films. In cantonese, we say 八婆 meaning the same as 38. Assuming you did not give out the whole context to your friend, so she had only told you most common usage.
October 28, 2016
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Teacher Beth
Language Skills
Arabic, Chinese (Mandarin), English, French, German
Learning Language
Arabic, Chinese (Mandarin), French, German