The Mandarin Blueprint Podcast focuses primarily on The Mandarin Blueprint Method online course and the Pronunciation Mastery online course. Creators Luke Neale & Phil Crimmins answer questions and comments from the online curriculum, discuss topics related to China and Mandarin learning and have special guests.
My wife was laughing while I was practicing “wǒ yào nǐ”.
Apparently yào has a sexual/erotic connotation when used in this
So 在 indicates the present progressive tense. Is there a way, in
Chinese, to express the emphatic present tense, as in “I do
practice every day”? Or will that be presented later in the
Thank you for this! Sorry I didn’t reply to you sooner. This was
helpful. I have a different background than most when it comes to
vocalization. I studied linguistics and was a dialect coach at
one point, so I am picky about how things sound. I realize now
that a) people who speak Chinese are going to differ slightly
(and sometimes more than slightly) in their pronunciation; and b)
that I need to relax a bit. I realize that the point of learning
Chinese is to be able to be understood, so a perfect accent,
while attainable, is not necessary. I thin of all the people I
encounter in a typical day for whom English is not their first
language. They may not speak English perfectly, but they are able
to be understood. That should be my goal.
How to avoid mistaking the 10 bowling stick for a prop and the
Gandalf staff for the keyword ? With more complex character than
the current one i’m sure i will manage to make the mistake…
Would it be right to apply a rule which says that the end of the
action must be the keyword ?
If we take the Olsen twins as prop, how to not confuse them with
the actor within a complex character ?
a/ Should we brake into small pieces each component like Phil
did for the 十 ? He took a staff and a razor blade. Is it more
flexible / convenient to do so ? The inconvenient is that we have
to bind the staff and the razor blade with a story.
b/ Now, Phil suggests us to use directly a christian cross or a
syringe as props. The advantage is that there is no need to make
a story to produce the 十. The inconvenient is that we need to
introduce many complex objects.
So what is the best solution ? I think it is better to use as
much complex objects as possible in order not to overload our
memory with complex stories but i may be wrong… What do you
In order not to be confused with shu and shü character, How do
we take the i sound from ?
Can we pick it up from the Actor first name (and go against the
HMM pinying chart rule) ?
But in that case i would have chosen Charlie SHEEN last name
instead of SEAN Connery first name. To me, it sounds closer to
the shi sound, isn’t it ?
I would take a knight sword for the component and an archery
target with 10 colored rings for the keyword.
It would be easy then to imagine someone (Sean …) throwing the
sword in a vertical way (like an axe) towards the target (this
target could be held just above the head of a circus assistant
(me for instance)…
Eric Engle says that “syringe is a good choice for 十 because
later on they will discover that metal+ten=needle”
So, we should choose an object for a prop depending on what kind
of other component it could be associated with to make a word ?
Is it a good solution to scan all the words and make
cross-reference of each component ? In order to choose the
optimal object which could fit in all cases ?
30:10 – Updates
This blog post explains the theory behind Movie Scenes and learning characters.
My friend Nadia is celebrating the New Year in Japan. She’s
staying with 12 friends in a home so she is getting ready for the
night by getting dressed in the kitchen. She is going to wear her
favorite pair of cowboy boots that she’s had for 12 years, and
she digs around in her suitcase with a stick to find her razor
and continue getting ready.
Keyword: To prohibit
Actor: Jennifer Garner
Set: The apartment I rENted in uni
Props: Groot, Giant Image Projector
It’s post-exam movie night and the movie club has set up a giant
image projector in the courtyard of my apartment for the
screening of The Avengers: Endgame. Jennifer Garner was in charge
of crowd control. Members of the club just need to say ‘Endgame’
to gain access.
As a member of the club, Groot too was invited, and he was
excited to see his movie. He whispered the password into her ear.
“I am Groot“
Jennifer shook her head.
“I am Groot?“
Jennifer looked at him wryly.
“I am Groot!!!”
“I am Groot!!!!!!!”
Jennifer, tired of his name-dropping, called security and Groot
was taken away. He’s now prohibited from joining movie nights
Ken doll from Toy Story movies (my original prop instead of
Jackie Chan) with a toupe (instead of Bruce Lee) is helping
Wonder Woman push Frankenstein’s Igor (instead of dominatrix, he
is always saying “yes, MASTER”) TOWARDS the light, like he is
having a near death experience.
So I imagined Woody in the bedroom of my childhood home. In the
distance, you can hear the church bells ringing in the noon mass.
Woody kneels by the bed and begins to pray whilst holding his
crucifix. Unfortunately, he is very tired having just finished
playing with Andy and he falls face down on his stomach on top of
the crucifix, fast asleep. As the 12th gong from the bells ring
out, all we can hear are the snores coming from Woody.
Idina Menzel is coming in as the character of Elsa in Frozen and
sees me sitting on my bed looking at a silver medal. I’m not
happy but she reminds me to just let it go, let it go, and
launches into the musical number, and as she performs she shoots
out a thin razor blade of ice from her wrist, and with the next
gesture of her arm a hook of ice then rises from the ground.
My loser ex boyfriend is laying on my bed begging for me to take
him back for a second time. Chelsea Lately is watching this whole
thing takes place and totally roasts him. This is an easy one to
This blog post explains the theory behind props and Chinese character components.
Peter Gabriel is another good option. The song Sledgehammer
played nonstop on MTV for I don’t know how many years.
I think it sounds kind of difficult to a wax seal in my movies
so I’m going to use an arctic seal (the animal).
For my prop, I will use a gigantic copy of The Velvet
Underground Self titled record, released in 1969. I wore the
groves off mine (I actually owned it on cassette first, but you
get the picture). On that record is a song called “I’m BEGINNING
to see the light”… Knocks my socks off every time I hear it.
I picked the cloud from the Pixar short animated film ‘Partly
Cloudy’. Easy to visualise as happy or sad to fit the scene of
the movie I’m making.
Reminds of the US/Mexico border wall, in parts it is made of