43. Show Us What You Got 头


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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.

13:15 Props!

This blog post explains the theory behind props and Chinese character components.

Sandy on ``Pick a Prop 文``

I chose a small version of the Earth like those on desks and in labs used as maps cuz it contain all countries of the world with many cultures

William Edmeades on ``Pick a Prop 象``


William Edmeades on ``Pick a Prop 头``

A Cromulon (giant floating head) from Rick and Morty. “Show me what you got!”

connor griffith on ``Make a Movie 司``

I couldn’t come up with anything, but immediately when I saw this it looked like a bobcat digger. That machinery needs to be operated safely.

Sandy on ``Pick a Prop 交``

I chose a huge floating fb sign or logo

connor griffith on ``Pick a Prop 母``

Looking at this character I see an apron.

William Edmeades on ``Pick a Prop 卖``

I’m imagining a “For Sale” sign, just like the one you see on the front yard of your house if you’re SELLING it

William Edmeades on ``Pick a Prop 牛``

A bottle of milk.

Natalia Berezina on ``Pick a Prop 反``

I chose a shirt that is put on inside out.

John Sprague on ``Pick a Prop ㇇``

Mr. Spock was the chief science officer on the Enterprise. Dr Benjamin Spock was a pediatrician/shrink who wrote books about how to raise children.

Natalia Berezina on ``Pick a Prop 合``

It looks like country side house facade. I picked toy house for this one.

Sandy on ``Pick a Prop 报``

signature Stamp cuz it seal deals and bargains

William Edmeades on ``Pick a Prop 史``

Hitler, I’m sure he’ll make for some interesting scenes!

connor griffith on ``Pick a Prop 奇``

For whatever reason this reminds me of a Native American headdress

John Sprague on ``Pick a Prop 用 ``

Increasingly, I find I have a propensity for conflating the meaning of a word with the association of it as a prop. For example, 用 means use. As a prop, I associate it with a swiss army knife…. so 用 means knife… er… use… or cut, like cut with a knife. Slice? I keep slipping down a rabbit hole of associations.

connor griffith on ``Pick a Prop 内``

Butter Churner

Sandy on ``Pick a Prop 元``

clapperboard cut film making videos cuz usually when they start filming any scene they use it

connor griffith on ``Pick a Prop 王``

Burger king

connor griffith on ``Pick a Prop 天``

A mushroom cloud

connor griffith on ``Pick a Prop 关``

A zipper

28:40 Actors!

This blog post explains the theory behind actors and Pinyin Initials.

John Sprague on ``Casting Call di- 24/55``

Dame Dianna Rigg is my Di actor. She was Emma Peel on the Avengers (an ancient TV show in the 1960’s). MANY years later, some may remember her from GoT as Olenna Tyrell.

John Sprague on ``Casting Call hu- 25/55``

Horatio Hornblower

John Sprague on ``Casting Call hu- 25/55``

Harcourt Fenton Mudd from an episode of the ancient TV show Star Trek.

Alina Dana Coroian on ``Casting Call ku- 22/55``

Kurosaki Ichigo (Bleach anime)

connor griffith on ``Casting Call n- 46/55``

Went with Neil Armstrong

Alina Dana Coroian on ``Casting Call d- 23/55``

Dylan Wang (Chinese actor)

Alina Dana Coroian on ``Casting Call f- 21/55``

Louis de Funès

33:55 Movies!

This blog post explains the theory behind Movie Scenes and learning characters.

Natalia Berezina on ``Make a Movie 其``

My qi actress came to the kitchen of my childhood home and gave me a bar of bitter chocolate. I didn’t like bitter chocolate so I refused to take it, so she went out and returned with a helmet with horns full of chocolate bars and asked me to choose any other chocolate bar.


Erin on ``Make a Movie 犬``

I went with a French bulldog (like the one from Modern Family) as the keyword for this character. I for some reason couldn’t picture a pitbull as easily in my head. Plus, it being a French bulldog, I can ‘dress it up’ in French clothing and give it a French accent 🙂


Ija Amrahi on ``Make a Movie 拉``

Keyword : To Pull
Actor : Leonardo DiCaprio
Set : My apartment in Australia
Props : A Giant Foam Finger, A Giant Vase

After finally winning an Oscar, Leonardo DiCaprio decided that he got bored of acting and wanted to play violin instead.

One night, DiCaprio was late to his performance at the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra. He was scrambling to get his violin, stored in my apartment.

There was a giant vase blocking the entrance and he used all his might to PULL the vase away so that he could open the door. He even used a rope but to no avail. He got flustered after a few tries.

But he remembered that there’s a magical giant foam finger stored in the car. He used the oversized finger to PULL the vase away from the door. Walla! He managed to get his violin and rushed to the event. He was so late that the performance has already ended when he arrived.

He stood at the entrance crying. But then he suddenly woke up and relieved that it was just a dream.

It was only 7.30pm. He showered, and went get the violin he stored in my apartment.

He was surprised to see a giant vase blocking the entrance……


connor griffith on ``Make a Movie 决``

I have Jupiter (Zeus) deciding to use an icicle as a means to get Clifford to drop the severed horse head, because he is getting blood all over the hallways of my school.

42:23 Miscellaneous

Sandy on ``It’s a Word! 很``

why there are two 等 in this sentence “你等这个比赛等了很长时间吗 ?” ?
why not skip the first 等 and will still have the same meaning , right ?


Mel on ``Anny 老师 Review: Nasal Final IONG (YONG)``

Is the /-ng/ sound trailed off when spoken in words like [游泳] (it sounds like yo’yo to me)? I then clearly hear it in words like [不用谢]? Did you address this in another post by any chance? Sorry…I have 0 articulation of Chinese sounds still….womp womp. 🙁


Leila Lee on ``Compound Final AI Quiz``

Truly grateful for your effort in creating Mandarin Blueprint for us. Thank you a thousand times.


connor griffith on ``It’s a Word! 他``

I get confused with the 了。。。了 structure when it is used for the duration of things. I can never remember if the second 了 means the action has completely stopped of if it is still on going.

Edit: I didnt realize how easy finding the answer was going ot be, so for everyone wondering: action+了+duration means you are no longer doing it. With action+了+duration+了 it is ongoing.


Anna Peleeva on ``(BONUS) Principle vs. Reality in Mandarin``

Thanks a lot for this video! It is interesting but also very entertaining. Especially the part about why and when people switch into mandarin from their local dialect.


John Sprague on ``MAKE A MOVIE 用 ``

“to use” or “user” makes me think of a heroin junkie or shooting up. Not a very nice association.


Debra Jansen on ``It’s a Word! 吐``

Hello – I agree with Naseem – It would be great if at some point a pdf of all sentences from Level 13 on was available to print off (level by level maybe with the Level Complete files) I’ve been doing a screen copy and print so that I can work through them on paper marking up the characters and words etc but its a bit inefficient. Just a thought. Working with the sentences is a lot of fun and a real challenge.


Jim Awofadeju - From Email

If a person said that they were interested in learning about Chinese
people, would it be reasonable for that person to learn the Chinese
language? In other words, when it comes to studying Chinese people, is it
important to study their language?

48 episodes