Monday, September 04, 2006

Episode Five: Chinese Medicine

This episode unveils what Chinese medicine is really about, its modern uses in China, and its spread to the other parts of the world. It also teaches you the words to get you into the door of a Chinese Medicine doctor:
1. 中药 'zhong1yao4' (Chinese Medicine): 中药通常很苦.(Chinese Medicine often has a very bitter taste.)
2. 中医 'zhong1yi1' (Chinese Medicine Doctor): 我认识一位老中医.(I know an old Chinese Medicine Doctor.)
3. 病了 'bing4 le';不舒服 'bu4 shu1fu2';很难受 'hen nanshou' (not comfortable; feeling sick): 我今天病了;我今天不太舒服;我今天有点难受. ( I am not feeling well today.)

Maybe you could do some lessons completely in Chinese.. like does with their intermediate shows. That would be great!
But not everybody talks fluently chinese and still wants to understand what is talked about :(
It doesn't have to be entirely in Chinese, but perhaps instead of waiting to the end to introduce new vocabulary you could introduce the vocab at the beginning, then translate your English sentences every now and then as you discuss the topic. I think even if I didn't understand every word in those sentences it would help just to get more familiar with the sounds of the language, and more advanced students would pick up more words and phrases.

In any case, please continue podcasting, and continue talking about life in China, etc. It's very interesting and helpful. It's on a short list of the podcasts I never miss.

One small request: the opening music is a bit loud, and when it comes up on my ipod I have to turn down the volume, then turn it back up when you start talking.
One more thing -- it's very helpful that you put the vocab on the blog entry. Could you add the tones to the pinyin as well? Even if it's just with numbers, i.e., "fu4 yu2" (if I remembered that correctly), since I know that entering it with the marks in html is not convenient. The tones are the most difficult thing for me to remember, and I want to be sure I learn them correctly on new vocab. Thanks again
This was an interesting podcast (just heard it today, as I'm a new subscriber and still playing catch up).

My wife is from Taiwan and on our last visit, I had the pleasure of visiting a Chinese doctor. My wife and sister-in-law felt that it was best that I visit the Chinese doctor to have him examine some of the daily things that plague my American life/body. I then experienced, first hand, the black and bitter Chinese liquid medicine. The pharmacy made it for us, however, and delivered it in CapriSun-style pouches. We had to boil water and warm the pouches in the boiling water. Then... YUCK! That was... amazingly nasty. However, if I followed the doses as prescribed, I found that it did help the daily problems I was having. I was very impressed.

Now that we're back home in the States, my sister-in-law continues to visit the pharmacy in Taipei to fill my prescription. Now, however, they grind it into powder and then pellets, then mail it to us. The prescription is to take a certain dose of pellets a day. The taste is still quite bad, but not anything near as bad as the liquid form.

All in all though, I have noticed a distinct improvement in what was plaguing me on a daily basis. It's made me a pretty big believer that the Chinese are definitely on to something. After 5,000 years of practicing medicine, one would certainly hope so!

But my advice to anyone thinking of trying this... I do recommend giving it a shot before you reach the "last resort" as Cathy says. It actually works! Trust our Chinese brethren - they will do your body good.

Thanks for your wonderful and enlightening podcasts, Cathy. It's helped me to understand my wife and her culture more too. I bet you didn't know you could improve a multicultural marriage with your podcast, eh?

Keep up the great work. I was going to mail you at the GMail address you mention in your podcast, but I keep forgetting to write it down and I cannot find it on any of your sites... so I decided to comment here.
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Cathy Lu's work with Chinese podcast is an art in itself. Listening to the easy voice is soothing and really a great way to learn a few words - and every person only can learn only a few words at a time. Big books often lead to clogging and undeveloped learning. Easy does it. I have listened to her work in Zhong Guo, Meng Guo (Mongolia) Mei Guo, and now central Asia. When I listen it is almost her wu shu on podcast, it helps.
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