One week from today, our nation will join countries from around the world in Beijing, China to compete in the 2008 Summer Olympics. Its time to prepare to experience the world in all its athletic grandeur. The merging hotpot of cultures, people and languages in a competitive atmosphere will take place this year in one of the oldest and most controversial cities in the world. While the smog and pollution might leave a stain on the lungs of Olympic athletes, China is sure to have pulled out all of the stops for this monumental event in their long and rich history.
If you’re like me, you’re eagerly anticipating 8-8-08 and the beginning of a marathon of events and athletic drama. I plan on watching the opening ceremonies and as much of the 2008 Olympics as possible. Not only is the competition fascinating, but the window into different cultures is intriguing as well. Since China is hosting the Olympics, we are sure to be exposed to a written language far different from our own. So, in order to properly prepare to be immersed in a new culture for the Summer Games, here are four Chinese symbols that you can impress your friends by knowing during the Olympics this year.
The pronunciation above the characters is Pinyin, a way to pronounce and read the Chinese Symbols. The corresponding number is the tone inflection used for that word. Check out Chinese Medicine Doc for a quick tutorial.
1. USA (the United States of America):
Chinese Pinyin: mei3 guo2
Be sure to check for this symbol at the top of every leader-board!
2. Strength of spirit:
Chinese Pinyin: jing1 shen2 li4 liang4
For those incredible moments of courage and athletic heroism.
3. Victory (triumph):
Chinese Pinyin: sheng4 li4
Yell this word as your favorite athlete crosses the finish line.
4. Gold (metal):
Chinese Pinyin: huang2 jin1
The color of Olympic greatness.
About.Com has additional Chinese characters and pronounciation if you are ambitious and want to pick up Mandarin Chinese during the Olympics.
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