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Whose “粉丝” are you?

fans in chinese, chinese words, learning chinese

There are quite a lot of interesting Chinese words that come from other languages, combining with Chinese language perfectly. This article will introduce a buzzword which you can hear either in the kitchen or read about in entertainment news.



In Chinese, "爱好者 (ài hào zhě), enthusiast" refers to those who are fond of something or any activity. "爱好 (ài hào)" means "love, like (喜欢-xǐ huān)". That is to say, people who love photography (摄影-shè yǐng) can be called "摄影爱好者 (shè yǐng ài hào zhě)" (shutterbug) and "体育爱好者" (sports fan) for those who like sports (体育-tǐ yù). The character "迷 (mí)" can be found in many words, such as "球迷 (qiú mí)", "歌迷 (gē mí)" and "影迷 (yǐng mí)", and Chinese people use it do describe "fascinated" or "obsessed". Expressions with "迷 (mí)" are generally short, but they are much more into something than the "爱好者 (ài hào zhě)".



This article will focus on the key word "粉丝 (fěn sī – fans)". In fact, "粉丝 (fěn sī)" is one type of thin and transparent noodles made from green bean flour. However, as "粉丝 (fěn sī)" pronunciation is quite similar to the English word "fans", it became a word referring to one type of people rather than food. "粉丝 (fěn sī)" can combine the meaning of both "爱好者 (ài hào zhě)" or "迷 (mí)". Every singer, movie star or soccer player has their own fans.



More interestingly, many stars' fans give themselves special names. For example, the fans of Chinese crosstalk comedian Guo Degang (郭德纲) are called "钢丝 (gāng sī, steel wire)", and those fans of Chinese singer Zhang Liangying (张靓颖) are called "凉粉 (liáng fěn, bean jelly)". As you can see, these titles normally consist of the character or homophone in the stars' names. In addition, these titles are basically related to food. Others like "什锦饭 (shí jǐn fàn, jambalaya)", the fans of former Chinese president Hu Jintao, uses the character "饭 (fàn)" which is also the transliteration of "fan". The crazy fans use these strange titles to distinguish themselves from others, and gradually, it becomes popular among the young people in China.

更加有趣的是,很多明星的粉丝有自己特别的名字。举几个例子:相声演员郭德纲的粉丝叫钢丝,歌手张靓颖的粉丝叫凉粉……可以看出来,这些名字中一般包含明星的名字;同时,这个名字基本上是吃的东西。再比如:胡锦涛的粉丝叫什锦饭, "饭"其实也是"Fan"的音译。疯狂的粉丝为了区分自己,就给自己起了这些稀奇古怪的名字。后来,这逐渐变成年轻人的一种潮流。


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