2,366 Chinese buzzwords with English explanations

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套路 tao
4
 lu
4
 

Routine tricks

The original meaning of this term tao lu refers to the established series of pre-designed skills and tricks in Chinese wushu or martial arts. Nowadays, in daily conversations and on the Internet, this expression is frequently used to describe an insincere way of doing something. In a typical scenario where a male uses clichés to flirt with a female he finds attractive, that female might indicate her aversion against his routine tricks or his tao lu

365 Buzzes


舔屏 tian
3
 ping
2
 

to lick the screen

Tian is to lick, and ping is the screen. Inspired by the various “licking screen” GIF characters who are drawn to appear as if they’re licking the viewer’s face, the phrase is often used as a display of adoration and unrestrained affection for an Internet hit when it appears on the screen.

226 Buzzes


塌方式腐败 ta
1
 fang
1
 shi fu
3
 bai
4
 

cave-in corruption

The term was coined following the recent shake-up in Shanxi’s leadership. Scores of senior officials were under investigation by the country’s anti-graft watchdog for “serious violations of discipline and law,” including Vice-Governor Ren Runhou and three members of the CPC Shanxi Standing Committee.

208 Buzzes


淘药族 tao
2
 yao
4
 zu
2
 

medication bargain hunter

Some Chinese mainland residents will make a large purchase of foreign-made medications in Hong Kong because of the lower prices than back home.

351 Buzzes


跳板工作 tiao
4
 ban
3
 gong
1
 zuo
4
 

stepping-stone job

A job accepted in belief that it is only a stepping stone to a better position.

417 Buzzes


土豪 tu
3
 hao
2
 

Beverly hillbilly/rich redneck

Those who are rich in money but not in class. The term has become popular these days with the unveiling of Apple's new gold-colored iPhone, which some consider gaudy.

563 Buzzes


抬头族 tai
2
 tou
2
 zu
2
 

chin-up clan

It refers to those who always take an optimistic outlook either at work or at home, neither grousing nor dodging work.

493 Buzzes


通婚圈 tong
1
 hun
1
 quan
1
 

same-class wedlock circle

More people are choosing a marriage partner on the same social and economic level. In the past, many people looked for a marriage partner from a richer, higher social status background.

502 Buzzes


天然呆 tian
1
 ran
2
 dai
1
 

natural airhead

This is used to describe a person who appears to be an airhead but is in fact sharp and witty and good company. The expression is borrowed from Japanese, used often by people who are fanatical about ACG (animation, comic and games).

531 Buzzes


叹老族 tan
4
 lao
3
 zu
2
 

young pessimists

Some young people in China feel they're lagging behind in a fast-changing world, thus sounding as if they're experiencing a premature mid-life crisis.

507 Buzzes


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