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As a professional negotiator with more than twenty years experience on the force, Richard had dealt with hostage cases before and knew that this would be a particularly tough one to crack.
Rather than a regular podcast, today we are pleased to publish a longer Elementary dialogue designed to test your listening comprehension.
With the Alibaba IPO throwing daytraders worldwide into a frenzed adulation of all things China, and the press going wild over Jack Ma and his Chinese e-commerce engine, this week's show takes a closer look at Taobao - the jewel in the Alibaba crown - with a hard-hitting quiz covering the most important things no-one seems to be able to remember about our favourite shopping site.
The government had first dismissed rumours of the city's impending water scarcity, yet as the months dragged on and the supply trucks grew less and less frequent, public denial morphed into slow acceptance as the city baked. Xiao Wang strained to tighten the security strap around her luggage, pressing her knee against the bulging fabric to muscle the suitcase closed. Did you ever thumb through a fresh copy of City Weekend and wonder why the Readers' Choice Award for Creepiest Park in Beijing has been awarded to Jingshan Park every year since the mid-1660s?
After years in the metaphorical wilderness, the Society of Anarchists had finally gathered enough funds to purchase their printing press. Having spent the weekend puttering around Chaoyang hospital listening to the groans of the infected, certain members of our staff would like to suggest that a priority for the next Fifth Year Plan be fixing the vending machines in all major health centers, so that at least some of this world's inevitable pain and suffering can be partially offset by the ready availability of fresh caffeine mixed with high-fructose corn syrup.Learning Chinese? This week at Popup Chinese, we take you behind the scenes of a recording session as Grace and Li Zhiqiang struggle to coax a decent performance out of a new voice actor.
Sarah had struggled for years with her company's internship program, which seemed to saddle her each year with marginally less competent and marginally more slack-jawed members of the local student population.
One moment Xiao Liu had been suggesting a weekend retreat to Zhongshan Park, and the next his entire office had plunged into a leaden silence.
A rose tucked away at the bottom of the pantry, clumsy letters wrapped in ribbons and hidden in the attic: such as these had been her efforts at concealment. Occasionally, we think back on our years in China and look back at our casual brushes with death with the sort of nostalgia other people feel for high school prom. After a lengthy hiatus, we're pleased to release another episode of our Chinese Quiz Night. We strive to make Popup Towers the sort of freewheeling love nest where interoffice relationships are highly encouraged, but sometimes struggle with the consequences.
Teaching Chinese may have been Xiao Wang's first love, but diversifying into English just made business sense.
Survive the horrors of both Halloween frights and multisyllabic words in this hysterical vocabulary game show! Four months of school tours, and meetings with first the principal and then every fourth grade teacher on payroll. The language used here is not terribly difficult, but it is spoken at native pace and with the sort of emotional inflection you'll find living and working in China. In time, even the moat around the Forbidden City drained to nothing, its dry stones picked clean by the dessicated husks of those who remained, parched shadows of their former selves.Learning Chinese?
In this episode, Megan squares off with returning champion Zhiqiang to answer this as well as questions on rehab and earth's diminishing dolphin population. Tucked away covertly below the buildings of parliament, the machine stood as a symbol of intellectual resistance within the very halls of a power.


This is a fairly difficult intermediate show, but if you've been listening to us for a while, we think you'll like it. As he would shortly discover, there were feelings that had been hurt, and if he hoped to paper over the situation the only thing to do was to make an apology and mend his ways. Yet how brazen were their mid-day meetings in the park near the wharf, making it nonetheless inevitable that her husband would hear of her affair, and take steps to bring it to a decisive and final end.Learning Chinese?
Procuring the damn thing from China had promised cheaper costs, but prompted endless foot-dragging from US customs over environmental standards and power supply issues. For such were those heady days of SARS, when the streets of Beijing were clean, taxis were readily available, and glaston and woad were part of the everyday lexicon here. In fact, as a language training company, we admire the way they've found success getting otherwise sensible people to use made-up words like venti and trenta in normal conversation. Joining new hosts Joakeem and Grace in our studio are two contestants known and feared by the other residents of Beijing: Martin the Destroyer, famous around Beijing for his mastery on the pub quiz circuit, as well as Ban "the terror from Qinghai" Yan, who is admittedly less intimidating in person that we were expecting.Not sure what this show is doing in your iTunes feed?
After Lily's break-up with Luo Hao, we took her aside and said "relax baby, there are plenty more fish in the sea for a hot cat like you." But she kept moping about, so we had to move her desk near the elevator. Not only were there a lot more English learners than foreigners in Beijing, but the students she picked up seemed more appreciative of her talents and receptive to her teaching methods. Holed up on the upper floors of the National Bank, the kidnappers had settled into a defensive position that would make storming the building a disastrous exercise in bloodshed, making a negotiated settlement the only practical option.]]> As a professional negotiator with more than twenty years experience on the force, Richard had dealt with hostage cases before and knew that this would be a particularly tough one to crack. Four months of paperwork, paperwork and more paperwork as Jonathan sat sullenly at home wondering when he would finally be able to go back to school.
And our goal is not so much teaching anything in particular so much as producing a half-mandarin, half-english show that features higher-level vocabulary you won't run into in other learning materials.
For while she had long ago become accustomed to the need for travelling light, it nonetheless seemed that there was somehow more and more to pack for each trip.]]> Xiao Wang strained to tighten the security strap around her luggage, pressing her knee against the bulging fabric to muscle the suitcase closed. Normally, Megan and Joakeem are trapped in a discussion on how to define their relationship but during Quiz Night this week they stay off that topic for 16 uninterrupted minutes of bliss.Learning Chinese? Its presence would spark a revolution in dissent and art both, and draw the ire of the very political establishment whose ideology it mocked.
Most textbooks stop there, but we've decided to plow on with this lesson that is going to confuse things even more, by showcasing a specific case in which the two characters are actually used to mean exactly the same thing. Not only does it help show what our recording sessions are usually like, but it provides a good excuse for talking about some of the less obvious words and phrases Chinese people use to describe more complex emotions.]]> This week at Popup Chinese, we take you behind the scenes of a recording session as Grace and Li Zhiqiang struggle to coax a decent performance out of a new voice actor. This is a bit of an easier Intermediate show than some of our more recent ones, so if you're clambering up to full fluency from the Elementary level, give it a try and see how much you can understand. Between those delays and the inevitable miscommunications with his Shenzhen supplier, it would have been easier to import Swiss equipment from the start.]]> Auric supervised the construction of his cutting laser feeling relief laced with loathing. Also on this show, what happened to the inventor of the flying car who strapped Cessena wings to a Ford Pinto.Learning Chinese?
Nonetheless, as occasional coffee drinkers ourselves, we also hope that someone at Starbucks listens to this lesson if only so that corporate headquarters gets a wake-up call about how insanely frustrating it is ordering a medium coffee anywhere in the Middle Kingdom.Incidentally, if you're already used to learning Chinese with us you'll find this Chinese lesson a bit different than its predecessors. Any passage leading to the upper crawlspace was well cloaked, perhaps even sealed off years ago in the renovations that followed the death of the last schoolmaster.


Our Chinese Quiz Show at Popup Chinese is a mixed English-Chinese concept show we're developing for upper-intermediate students: a quiz game that mixes Chinese questions with just enough English to keep things intelligible. Sure, every now and then someone would come along who thought they knew better, but had they lived in London for four months?Learning Chinese? It had been a long wait, but today, at least, his parents would get an answer to that question.]]> The admission process had already taken four months.
Our annotated transcript is there as always in case you have difficulty.]]> Rather than a regular podcast, today we are pleased to publish a longer Elementary dialogue designed to test your listening comprehension.
Today, join us and learn everything from the name of Goldman Sachs in Chinese, to the essential catchphrases needed to outsource your thesis to somewhere south of Wuhan.
The Popup Chinese Quiz Night is easy-to-digest mixed-language edutainment for intermediate learners.
Our Popup Chinese quiz show is intended for people who already have pretty good mandarin but are looking for a fun way to expand their vocabulary.
And that's because we don't really teach standard mandarin so much as the bizarre subset of it needed by anyone growing weary of repeating themselves about seventy or eighty times to make sure they get the right-sized drink, or going through the physical pantomime we call the "Starbucks dance", a highly repetitive ritual between you and your barista that involves rhythmic turn-based pointing at the cup rack.]]> Popup Towers has nothing against Starbucks. And with Miss Gruntle known to prowl the school grounds at night, their only opportunity to truly explore opened them to the risk of a lifetime of lashings. We're still tweaking the balance, but if you're stretching past the intermediate level and looking for fun listening materials we think you'll like it -- our topics today range from general China knowledge to popular and not-so-popular singers, as well as a final category with language we hope none of us ever to have to use. In this show, the second time our Chinese tutor has surfaced, we cover some essential classroom vocabulary you may have missed: words and phrases like "say it again" and "what fresh hell is this". While we don't walk through the recording line-by-line, David and Grace do point out some of the more difficult bits, including some revolutionary language you may not yet know. Our goal is offering up stimulating high-level vocabulary that can help you hone your listening comprehension and vocab while havng fun, or at least enjoying the warm feeling of knowing that your Chinese is better than that of the Swedish guy who is hosting the show.]]> Did you ever thumb through a fresh copy of City Weekend and wonder why the Readers' Choice Award for Creepiest Park in Beijing has been awarded to Jingshan Park every year since the mid-1660s?
This week we have nine questions split into three thematic categories, covering everything from mouthwash to our favorite ineffective Chinese herbal remedies. Listen up and find out why.]]> After a lengthy hiatus, we're pleased to release another episode of our Chinese Quiz Night. So if you can't yet understand Chinese spoken at natural speed but are getting there, give this show a listen and let us know what you think in the comments section.]]> Teaching Chinese may have been Xiao Wang's first love, but diversifying into English just made business sense.
So take a listen and let us know what you think.]]> The government had first dismissed rumours of the city's impending water scarcity, yet as the months dragged on and the supply trucks grew less and less frequent, public denial morphed into slow acceptance as the city baked.
So if you're an upper-level student, check out the show and let us know what you think.]]> Occasionally, we think back on our years in China and look back at our casual brushes with death with the sort of nostalgia other people feel for high school prom.



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