[Ads-l] Quote: May you live in interesting times (Chinese curse?)

Laurence Horn laurence.horn at YALE.EDU
Mon Dec 21 19:00:08 UTC 2015

Or in the appropriately inflected English:
"Nice city you got there.  Would be a shame if something happened to it."


> On Dec 21, 2015, at 11:12 AM, W Brewer <brewerwa at GMAIL.COM> wrote:
> Asked my wife about this topic. She came up with the following recent news
> event in Taiwan.
>     A Buddhist nun recently got angry at the mayor of Taipei City and
> cursed him saying: "Hope Taipei doesn't have disasters." This cynical wish
> caused quite a stir in Taiwan.
>     Background. Apparently, the Tzu Chi Foundation (a Buddhist charitable
> organization), allegedly managed to buy some public land. When, the mayor
> of Taipei, Ke Wenzhe, wondered how this was possible, Shi Zhaohui, dean of
> Social Sciences at Xuanzhuang University, and a Buddhist nun, responded
> hexasyllabically with "Pan4 Tai2-bei3 wu2 zai1-nan4", lit. "Hope Taipei no
> disaster"; i.e. something like "Let's hope disaster does not befall
> Taipei." Quite a brouhaha.
> Apple Daily (Ping2-guo3 Ri4-bao4), 16 March 2015, 18:32.
> https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=http-3A__www.appledaily.com.tw_realtimenews_article_new_20150316_575243_&d=AwIBaQ&c=-dg2m7zWuuDZ0MUcV7Sdqw&r=wFp3X4Mu39hB2bf13gtz0ZpW1TsSxPIWYiZRsMFFaLQ&m=QKgMnmAoog7biKBS0aqc_bvuApXRrK-6Lct-SEpWsSA&s=s0vPU37fiyBUQiPbj3WBS-0JxIxHOovWTVsr8XhFZX8&e= 
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> The American Dialect Society - https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=http-3A__www.americandialect.org&d=AwIBaQ&c=-dg2m7zWuuDZ0MUcV7Sdqw&r=wFp3X4Mu39hB2bf13gtz0ZpW1TsSxPIWYiZRsMFFaLQ&m=QKgMnmAoog7biKBS0aqc_bvuApXRrK-6Lct-SEpWsSA&s=ElO-ywcutB0_X58kLLsw-z7G4_mDrYmuXGCXHyXqGvw&e= 

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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