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Today’s entry is based around the character 差 chà which has quite a few meanings (of course) but basically means ‘to lack, short of, differ from’.
You can say 3 minutes until 8:00 - 差三分八点 – sān fēn bā diăn, which is a terrible time to go to work. Another useful example is差不多 – chà bù duō – which means ‘almost, nearly the same’.
Now let’s break down the elements of 差 chà. The bottom right of the character looks like 工 gōng, which is work or worker and the top portion reminds me of 美 mĕi which means beautiful.
工 gōng is often paired with工作 gōng zuò to describe the activity of work. The character 工 gōng is fairly easy to remember since it looks like an I – “I can’t believe I have to work today”.
Of course it’s completely natural at this point to feel compelled to listen to American Woman.
If you’re learning English, here’s a version with text-lyrics.
Now that you have both of those, here’s how to remember the character 差 chà.
At work (工 gōng) there are never enough beautiful (美 mĕi) people around. Another way to express that - work is lacking (差 chà) beautiful people.
工 + 美 = 差.
And because we were talking about work and beautiful, I would be remiss if I didn’t include a link to Loveboy’s Working for the Weekend. Enjoy!
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