Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Ditch the Parachute Pants: Part Two

This post is part of a series titled, "Ditch the Parachute Pants."  If you haven't already, you may want to begin by reading the first post in this series.

Vocabulary previously introduced:
  - pants/trousers

The problem (wèntí 问题) with Helen's mother's parachute wasn't that she () took them home and started wearing them immediately.  Nor did Helen take issue with the fact that her mother wore those nearly every day without fail (though they had begun to inspire nausea and had popped up in more than one of her most unfashionable nightmares).  It was, after all, the 80's, and parachute were "in" and "now", as they say.  The problem (wèntí 问题) with those horrific came twenty years later (problem = wèntí 问题 [pronounced like twenty without the initial "t"]), after we all survived a surprisingly boring Y2K.  The wèntí 问题 was that after twenty years, Helen's mother was still wearing those hideous

Now Helen knew that she () couldn't let her mother run around looking like she () had fallen out of a time machine, so she () began to formulate a plan to rehabilitate her mother's wardrobe.  She () decided that if she () could just get her mother to realize that there were much better (and less neon) options to be explored, her wèntí 问题 would be solved.  First, she () approached her mother and kindly informed her that parachute   were no longer in style.  Helen then offered to take her mother shopping (again) so they could pick out something a bit more modern.  This approach was entirely unsuccessful, however, as Helen's mom simply laughed and commented that parachute would never go out of style and that Helen didn't need to take her shopping for clothes again - after all, they'd already gone once before.

Next, Helen tried going straight to the store by herself to purchase her mother a fantastic new pair of khaki She () figured if she () could just bring her mother a great new pair of to try on at home, her mother might just fall in love with them.  Helen sat her mother down and told her about the fantastic and trendy new she () had bought for her and then she () held them up with a grand "ta da!" (she = tā ; tā is pronounced "tah" - see below for additional uses of this word).  Her mother laughed once again and informed Helen that she () was much too fashionable for such dull .  Helen knew at that moment that if wanted to solve her mother's wèntí 问题, was going to have to pull out all the stops.

* Note: The word "tā " also means "her", except when "her" is possessive ("her" would then be translated "tā de" ).  The word "tā" also means "he" or "him", but when it means "he" or "him" it is written as the following character:

Did you enjoy this post?  Then you might also enjoy Mnemonics Made Me Do It: Animal Words In Chinese Via Visual Memory Cues. Also, be sure to visit this week's word list on Memrise.com for great mnemonics to help you learn the characters for this week's vocabulary.

Image by khym54 via Flickr is licensed via CC.

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