Into one warmer corner of today the Sun sneaks, leaving that Winter-distant anchorage it has in each and every Sun-less-other-day to pour against Antarctica a decisive hint or two of long-lost Spartan ardour. Goose-pimpled at the heart of an open-wide air, I am instantly all-porous to the unappointed warmth of such vernal atmosphere and out of the rigid closed fist of my full-body huddle ever so slowly I begin to ravel outwards ― the way these chattering roof-top swallows seem to do, ruffling the length of the chilly metal gutter their glinting metallic blue-sheened feathers and the Winter-flame-red feathers of their weathered chests, preening ― as they talk ― with pinpointing, deft beaks, with their unclenched, bolder bird-sense of tall order.
LegCo council-member 林卓廷 Lam Cheuk-ting was arrested on the morning of 26 August in connection with the incredible violence that took place inside the Yuen Long MTR Station on 21 July 2019 (Lam himself was badly beaten around the face in this incident), as well as a protest outside Tuen Mun Police Headquarters on 6 July connected with the protest against noise pollution and various kinds of busking (especially the so-called “dancing aunties”) in Tuen Mun Park.
Before his arrest, he recorded this 15-minute interview with a pair of HK01 journalists about the forthcoming public poll that Hong Kong’s democratic camp is conducting to determine whether it stay on in opposition in LegCo, or whether it withdraw. Apart from its intrinsic interest with regard to democracy in Hong Kong, I am presenting it here because Lam speaks so comprehensibly, pronouncing his words very clearly, and very rarely running them together as his questioners do.
To watch and listen to Lam in action, please click here. And remember, if you want the standard jyutping romanization or to check any of the Chinese in the text, please consult the Sheik Cantonese on-line dictionary.
Unfortunately, because there are no subtitles with this video and because the audio for the two journalists is very poor, there are many gaps in the transcription. If any one can help fill them in for me on behalf of all those students of Cantonese, I would be very grateful! Please just contact me by writing a comment on this post!
Caption: 民主派延任現爭拗 / 民調門檻怎樣定？
吳倬安：大家好！歡迎大家收睇財經加零一。我係你哋節目主持吳倬安，而我身邊呢，就係有《香港01》政情組總采訪主任陳小瑜 / / 嘅。小瑜，噉政府呀，就因爲新冠肺炎疫情呢，就押後選舉一年呢。噉 laai seung wei 呢 / / 爲咗，啫，處理呢個選舉真空期嘅問題呢。於是，就作出決定，就將第六届立法會呢，就延任不少於一年。噉呢個決定公佈咗之後呢，其實，喺 *hei 民主派 / / 都有好多嘅討論呢，有人認爲要留低喺議會呢，亦都有人認爲因該要杯葛嘅。噉可以話係剩返雙方呢， 都 kyun loi gat wong 。噉其中呢，eh 有七位立法會議員嘅民主黨呢。噉佢哋就表態喇，就傾向留守議會戰線呢。噉佢哋就委托咗香港民意研究所，就進行民意調查呢，就用嚟確定佢哋去留嘅。噉今日呢，我哋嚟請到民主黨立法會議員林卓廷上嚟同我哋討論吓呢個題目嘅。多謝你呀，林卓廷接受我哋訪問呀。多謝！
● 真空期 jān1 hūng1 kèih4 = a vacuum; a vacuum period | ● 杯葛 būi1 got3 = to boycott | ● 表態 bíu2 taai3 = to make one’s position known; to declare where one stands | ● 留守 làuh4 sáu2 = to stay behind & take care of things | ● 委托 wái2 tok3 = to entrust
Gist: The host Cheuk On Ng introduces himself and his colleague Chan Siu-yu, head of the political news team at HK01. He gives some background to the issue: that the LegCo elections have been postponed for a year because of the covid virus, that this postponement has sparked heated discussion in the democratic camp, and that because of this a number of democratic council members have proposed conducting a poll [民意調查 or 民調 for short] in order to determine whether they should stay on in the Council or leave.
陳小瑜：係 / / 你認爲 ah 民主派應該喺 chyun tou bit jan[g] 延任一年 / / 多數應該用 / jyun tou / 政策全面杯葛、/ /？
Gist: Lam thanks his hosts. Chan Siu-yu asks Lam whether he thinks all the democratic councillors should stay on in LegCo, or whether they should all boycott [杯葛] it.
林卓廷：首先呢，小瑜兄，我哋民主黨呢，係覺得我哋必須要堅守現代嘅議會戰線嘅。因爲我哋預計呢，嚟緊一年呢，喺立法會裏邊係會有好多嘅重大嘅議案，係涉及市民重大嘅利益，包括係 um 東大嶼嘅過萬億嘅填海計劃啦，仲有係大灣區，講緊係有15萬潛在嘅係居住内地嘅香港人【2:00】嘅投票安排。呢個絕對會呢，係嚴重咁影響到立法會同埋區議會最終嘅選舉結果，民主派可能因爲呢20萬票呢，會變成大敗嘅。令一點就係，而家香港社會好關注嘅健康碼嘅問題，日後政府會唔會借推呢個健康碼去搜集市民嘅私隱資料去追蹤我哋嘅行蹤。呢啲問題呢，都係我哋需要喺堅守住議會嘅戰線係抵抗呢個惡法。我其實亦都明白到，有好多市民，尤其我哋民主派陣營嘅支持者，對於 ah 中央政府係拒絕按《基本法》四年嘅任期係俾我哋喺九月係進行立法會選舉剝奪咗我哋市民嘅投票權係非常非常之憤怒。我哋民主黨亦都係【3:00】ah ah 激烈，激烈咁去反對有關嘅決定，不過，啫，人大已經做咗呢個決定，而佢延任一年嘅安排呢，係令到我哋民主陣營裏邊呢，而家出現極致大嘅爭拗。噉我哋為咗我哋嘅團結唔好再受損落去，所以我哋就決定，用呢個民調嘅方式，希望可以用一個市民有參與情況底下，去解決現在已經係咁嚴重嘅爭議。我哋唔想我哋成個民主陣營係因爲呢件事情呢，嗰個分裂係惡化落去。我哋强調，現在我哋成個嘅陣營呢，必須槍口對外，團結一致，去對抗現在香港面對緊嘅種種嘅惡法，以至北京政府，林鄭政府對香港人嘅打壓呢。
● 堅守 gīn1 sáu2 = to stick to; to hold fast to; to stand fast | ● 戰線 jin3 sin3 = battle line; battlefront; front | ● 嚟緊一年 lèih4 gán2 yāt1 nìhn4 = the coming year| ● 議案 yíh5 ngon3 = a proposal; a motion | ● 日後 yaht6 hauh6 = in the future; in (the) days to come | ● 私隱資料 sī1 yán2 jī1 líu2 = personal/private material | ● 追蹤 jēui1 jūng1 = to follow the trail of; to track; to trace | ● 行蹤 hàhng4 jūng1 = whereabouts; track | ● 抵抗 dái2 kong3 = to resist; to stand up to | ● 陣營 jahn6 yìhng4 = a group of people who pursue a common interest; a camp | ● 剝奪 mōk1 dyuht6 = to deprive; to expropriate | ● 投票權 tàuh4 piu3 kyùhn4 = the right to vote | ● 憤怒 fáhn5 nouh6 = indignation; anger; wrath | ● 激烈 gīk1 liht6 = intense; sharp; fierce | ● 極致 gihk6 ji3 = (?) extremely | ● 團結 tyùhn4 git3 = to unite; to rally | ● 受損 sauh6 syún2 = to be damaged | ● 爭議 jāang1 yíh5 = a dispute; a controversy | ● 惡化 [ng]ok3 faa3 = to worsen; to deteriorate | 槍口對外 chēung1 háau2 deui3 ngoih6 = (?) to point our guns outwards (rather than at ourselves) | ● 以至 yíh5 ji3 = down to; up to; and even | ● 打壓 dáa2 [ng]aat3 = to combat & suppress
Gist: Lam opens by saying he thinks they should stay, because a number of crucial issues are coming up for discussion in the coming year, including the trillion dollar plus land reclamation project proposed for eastern Lantau Island, a plan to find a way to enable the 150,000 Hong Kong people living in the Greater Bay Area [大灣區] to vote in Hong Kong elections, and the issue of the health code [健康碼] together with the collection of personal details. These are good reasons to stay, together with the fact that many in the democratic camp were angered by the decision, taken by the Central Government of the PRC, to postpone the elections in the first place. Lam goes to acknowledge that many in the democratic camp oppose staying on in LegCo, and that serious divisions have emerged that threaten to seriously undermine the unity of the democrats. A way then had to be sought to re-unify the group.
● 振振有詞 jan3 jan3 yáuh5 chìh4 = speak plausibly and at length | ● 勸服 hyun3 fuhk6 = to persuade | ● 民友 màhn4 yáuh5 = (?) a person sympathetic to the democratic cause
Gist: Chan Siu-yu asks Lam about the apparent contradiction in his opening statement: the coming year is indeed a very important one, so why conduct a poll that may lead to the group resigning en masse from LegCo rather than try and persuade everyone involved of the vital need to say on?
林卓廷：喺上嘅星期一呢，我哋民主黨同埋多位民主派嘅朋友呢，都係公開交代咗我哋初步嘅睇法，我哋話我哋傾向係留守呢個議會嘅戰線。噉但係之後呢，我哋留意到，係喺社會上有好極力嘅討論，尤其喺我哋自己民主陣營裏邊嘅支持者呢，而經過呢個討論係去到傷害到我哋過去一年bat lei bat yi 嘅團結。噉所以我哋認爲呢，必須要係儘快有一個大家都可以接受嘅方法去解決呢個爭議嘅。我哋亦都【5:00】係好開心 / / 聽，市民嘅睇法究竟呢個爭議用咩辦法解決呢，我哋聽到最 / / ，就係有一個民調或者係公投嘅方式去處理呢個爭議。噉所以我哋最終考慮到時間呀、人手呀、具體操作上嘅困難等等嘅情況呢，我哋就決定用呢個民調嘅方式，希望係喺我哋成個民主陣營裏邊呢，參考最大嘅共識，係解決現在嘅爭議，重新團結返起嚟呢。
● 極力 gihk6 lihk6 = to do one’s utmost; to spare no effort | ● 公投 gūng1 tàuh4 = (?) a public vote (on an issue) | ● 具體操作 geuih6 tái2 chou3 jok3 = concrete operations
Gist: Lam recalls that last Monday (24 August), various democrats expressed their view about staying during a press conference. However, the disagreements this gave rise to concerned the democratic camp about damage to group unity. In the effort to deal with this problem, Lam notes that most people argued for a poll or a public vote [公投] on the question. After considering various aspects, including time, manpower and difficulties involved in the concrete operation of any solution, it was decided that a poll be conducted to resolve the disputes and reunify the democrats.
● 導向性 douh6 heung3 sing3 = ? cf. 導向 guidance | ● 謹慎 gán2 sàhn4 = prudent; careful | ● 記者會 gei3 jé2 wúi6*2 = press conference | ● 公信力 gūng1 seun3 lihk6 = the ability to win public trust ● 問卷 mahn6 gyún2 = a questionnaire | ● 門檻 muhn4 laahm6 = threshold| ● 服膺於 fuhk6 yīng1 yū1 = 1. to bear in mind 2. to feel deeply convinced 3. (?) subordinate to | ● 即日 jīk1 yaht6 = this or that very day | ● 鐘庭耀博士 = | ● 澄清 chìhng4 chīng1 = to clear up; to clarify | ● 干預 gōn1 yuh6 = to interfere; to intervene; to meddle
Gist: Lam acknowledges that any kind of “guidance” [導向性] in the creation of the poll would have an influence on the result, and that the democratic camp has a strong interest in the outcome. For this reason, as was announced at the press conference last Thursday, they decided to approach a professional, independent polling organization to draw up the questionnaire on their behalf and to determine the relevant thresholds. They would make the decision about whether to stay on in LegCo or leave as per the results of the poll. On that same day, they contacted Dr Robert Chung Ting Yiu of the Hong Kong Public Opinion Research Institute and had some preliminary discussion about the poll. Without there having been any discussion of the issue, Dr Chung came up with his own suggestions regarding the two thresholds and set out his ideas for everyone to be aware of. The democratic camp respects the professionalism and independence of Dr Chung’s organization and so will abide by everything it decides to do. Lam reiterates that could not and would not interfere in the design of the questionnaire, the way in which the polling is carried out, and (?) all the conclusions they reach.
● 計算 gai3 syun3 = 1. to count; to compute; to calculate 2. consideration; planning | ● 考慮因素 háau2 leuih6 yān1 sou3 = (?) factors that one takes into consideration
Gist: In response, Lam says that with regard to the way in which the specific calculations were worked out, it would be better to hear from Robert Chung himself. This is because of the issue of a conflict of interests for the democratic camp. He reiterates that the democrats would comply with the manner in which a professional poll was carried out. But as to the logic that lies behind the design [of the poll] [嗰個背後嘅設計嘅邏輯] or the factors that were taken into consideration [考慮因素], it would be better to hand this over to Dr Chung, for the reason that the democratic camp had nothing to do with the design or planning of the poll.
● 判斷 pun3 dyun3 = to judge; to decide; to determine | ● 質疑 jāt1 yìh4 = to call into question; to query | ● 度身 dohk6 sān1 = (?) to make to measure | ● 雙門檻 sēung1 mùhn4 laahm6 = (?) “double/paired thresholds” | ● 表示方式 bíu2 sih6 fōng1 sīk1 = a means of expression | ● 票數 piu3 sou3 = the number of votes | ● 容易引起誤會 yùhng4 yih6 yáhn5 héi2 ngh6 wuih6 = easily lead to misunderstandings
Gist: Lam begins by saying at the press conference last Thursday, that they would respect Robert Chung’s handling of the poll, although at the time they did not know whether he would accept the assignment. He then states that members of the democratic camp did not take part in the discussion about thresholds: they did not go to Chung with a request for the poll to be “made to measure” in order to get the result they wanted. Any doubts on this score have no basis in reality. Lam then states that the term 雙門檻 or “double/paired thresholds” used by some sections of the media is misleading because, in his view, the thresholds are independent of one another. Finally, he reiterates that the democratic camp will abide by the result of the poll with regard to their staying on or leaving LegCo.
● 請教 = chíng2/chéng2 gaau3 = to ask for advice; to consult | ● 隨機 chèuih4 gēi1 = random; randomly; at random | ● 比例 béi2 laih6 = proportion
Gist: The host Cheuk On Ng asks about another poll that was conducted by phone between 17-20 August. According to this, numbers were virtually evenly divided on the question of whether to stay or leave. He asks Lam for a comment on this result and the idea that it reflects how difficult it will be to make a final decision. He also makes a comment regarding supporters of the pro-establishment camp [建制派]. (Parts of this are still very unclear to me.)
● 趨向 chēui1 heung3 = 1. to tend to; to incline to 2. a trend; a direction | ● 評論 pìhng4 leuhn6 = to comment on; to discuss; a comment | ● 理由 léih5 yàuh4 = a reason; a ground; an argument | ● 鐘劍華博士 Jūng1 Gim3 Wàah4 bok3 sih6 = Dr Chung Kim-wah (of PORI) | ● 參考性 chāam1 háau2 sing3 = of a referential nature cf. 參考 = 1. to consult; to refer to 2. a reference | ● 呼籲 fū1 yuh6 = to appeal to; to call on | ● 全港性 chyùhn4 góng2 sing3 = Hong Kong-wide (lit. “complete Kong nature” | ● 抽樣 chāu1 yéung6*2 = a sample; sampling | ● 聽從 tīng1 chùhng4 = to obey; to comply with | ● 廣泛 g[w]óng2 faahn6 = extensive; wide-ranging | ● 純碎 sèuhn4 seui3 = pure; purely | ● 辯論 bihn6 leuhn6 = to argue; to debate | ● 鋪陳 pōu1 chàhn4 = to narrate in great detail; to describe at length; to elaborate | ● 理據 léih5 geui3 = an argument | ● 撤出 chit3 chēut1 = (?) to withdraw | ● 歲月 seui3 yuht6 = years | ● 嚴厲 yìhm4 laih6 = stern; severe
Gist: First of all, Lam declines to comment on the motivations of pro-establishment supporters. He goes on to say that the telephone poll referred to by the host was done for reference purposes: it was a 一個參考性嘅民調 = “a poll of a referential nature” done by a member of the Hong Kong Public Opinion Research Institute. It seems that as a result of this first poll, it became clear that it would be necessary to conduct a Hong Kong-wide poll [全港性]. Finally, Lam reiterates how important this decision will be in terms of issues such as the freedoms and rights of the people of Hong Kong and wonders whether individuals are prepared to face the dark days of repression ahead if the decision is made to quit LegCo.
You feel it, of course ⸺ the tension implicit in attention. What it registers flows nowhere fingers begin to get a grip on even for an inch.
And if you were the river streaming forever with no fixed point through the course of a liquid lifetime what would you struggle to try and say to yourself just so the predicament was that little bit easier to bear? ⸺
Make no object of the current and by all means let the torrent of “each moment” flood-light you whole.
黃重光 Dr Wong Chung-kwong has over 30 years’ experience working as a psychiatrist and was for a long time Professor and Chairman of the Department of Psychiatry of at the Chinese University of Hong Kong. In 2005, he founded the non-profit voluntary organization “Whole Person Education Foundation” to promote the “ICAN Whole Person Education” training to adults and students in Hong Kong, an initiative aimed at enhancing mental health. More recently, he has expanded ICAN education to include Macau and Shenzhen, as well as 連山壯族瑤族自治縣 Lianshan Zhuang and Yao Autonomous County in northern Guangdong province. Needless to say, he is an eloquent and insightful speaker on mental-health issues.
There is too much text here to translate in its entirety, but if you don’t read Cantonese, here is one of the most interesting parts of the interview:
Candy Chea Shuk-mui: Now what is extremely important for a person is this, the body and the desire for good health. Nevertheless, I am forever hearing you say “if the psychology is in good health, then you can be sure that the physiology will also be in good health”. However, the reverse does not necessarily hold true, does it?
Dr Wong Chung Kwong: Yes, that’s correct. The reason is that, when all is said and done [最終], it is the health of the person as a whole, body and mind being inseparable, right? Of course, this also includes personal relations, family, friends, work. Now these three aspects [i.e. family, friends, work] all have to be good at the same time for everything to be right with a person [佢]. On the other hand, however, there are people who suffer from an illness, perhaps even a physical disability, but as long as they are at a high level, psychologically-speaking, what is it we see? That individual’s life is likewise outstanding, and the person is happy, right? But when things are the other way round and, in psychological terms the quality is on the low side or there is confusion or the person’s mood is down, then for that person, generally speaking, there is an influence on physical health (Candy Chea Shuk-mui: Mm). With regard to this orientation, by and large, there is no change [for the better].
As usual, there is plenty of wonderful material in this except for anyone learning Cantonese. Perhaps the most interesting thing is 淰瞓得滯, which comes towards the end. This combines 淰瞓 nahm6 fan3 = “sound asleep” with the expression 得滯 dāk1 jaih6, tacked on afterwards to add the sense of = “too (much)”. There are also a couple of uses of the verbal particle 嚫 chān1, which is added to verbs to express the idea of “adversity”, usually involving some notion of physical or psychological pain:
我太太隻腳整嚫之後 = after my wife hurt her leg (整嚫) 好在冇跌嚫 = fortunately, [I] didn’t fall and hurt myself (跌嚫)
Look out too for some of the colloquial numbers ⸺ 卌呀 = forty; 十幾廿 = ten or so ⸺ as well as two useful four-character expression, 分秒必爭 = “every second counts” and 執筆忘字, “to suddenly forget how to write a word”, an experience most learners of Cantonese are all too familiar with!
You can listen to the full interview with Dr Wong here. If you’d like to read the transcript of the first ten minutes or so, please keep scrolling down. And remember, if you want the standard jyutping romanization or to check any of the Chinese in the text, please consult the Sheik Cantonese on-line dictionary.
● 輸出 syū1 chēut1 = to export; to output; (?) to give out
● 直程 jihk6 chìhng4 = 1. directly; straightaway 2. surely; sure enough; to be sure; definitely; undoubtedly; absolutely cf. SWC 簡直 ● 呵 hó2 = [final particle] huh – often used as a question tag to verify sth. while expecting confirmation
● 整嚫 jíng2 chān1 = to hurt (a leg) ● 第二啲方法 daih6 yih6 dī1 fōng1 faat3 = other ways (lit. “second some ways”) ● 錄音嘅書 luhk6 yām1 ge3 syū1 = an audio book ● 進修 jeun3 sāu1 =engage in advanced studies; pursue further studies; take a refresher course
車淑梅：分秒必爭嘅，黃重光醫生！好嘢，好嘢！噉唔怪得咁健康 . . .
● 分秒必爭 fān1 míuh5 bīt1 jāng1 = every second counts
● 撈亂 lōu1 lyuhn6 = to shuffle; (?) to put in the wrong order; to put the wrong way round ● 執筆忘字 jāp1 bāt1 mòhng4 jih6 = to suddenly forget how to write a word ● 放榜 fong3 bóng2 = to publish a list of successful candidates ● 軍訓 gwān1 fan3 = military training
In this strange August wind, no one is left alone. It celebrates with its hissing all the world there is still left to go. Clouds are resculpted in its image: not the aëry fancy of poets but muscular knots of force, like fists. At ground level its whistling search parties comb through every single leaf of grass and tussock, to prove the essence of its substance right to the limits of finesse. If I followed the wind out into open fields and challenged it by standing tall into space, it would punch me at the knees, circle in voiced and unvoiced kingdoms, assemble sky-high columns of pressure on vulnerable points, whip the light from my eyes into huge, eerie billboards, give me just one other good reason to live on.
I was surprised to discover recently that, in addition to being charged under the new National Security Law and awaiting trial for taking part in an “unauthorized” commemoration of the 1989 Tian’anmen Massacre, 黎智英 Jimmy Lai is also currently in court for allegedly intimidating a news reporter working for the Oriental Daily News. In this report by 林樂兒 Làhm4 Lohk6 Yìh4 at HK01, we learn something about the background to this case, especially with regard to the methods employed by the Oriental Daily News to gather their stories. You can find the original HK01 story here.
● 刑事恐嚇 = (?) criminal intimidation | 刑事 yìhng4 sih6 = criminal + 恐嚇 húng2 haak3 = to threaten; to intimidate ● 東方報 = Dūng1 Fōng1 Bou3 = Oriental Daily News ● 事主 sih6 jyú2 = the victim of a crime ● 辯方 bihn6 fōng1 = the defence (in a legal trial) ● 隸屬 daih6 suhk6 = be subordinate to; be under the jurisdiction or command of; be affiliated; an affiliation ● 監察 gāam1 chaat3 = to monitor; to supervise; to control ● 擺位 báai2 wái6*2 = ? | baai2 = 1. to lay; to put; to place; to arrange ● 事宜 sih6 yìh4 = arrangements; to make) arrangements
The founder of Apple Media Jimmy Lai is suspected of criminal intimidation [刑事恐嚇] against a reporter [from] the Oriental Daily Newspaper Group [東方報業集團]. Under questioning from the defence, the victim of the crime admitted that he was affiliated with a “special case group” [專案組] and, if there was no other important work to do, would monitor [the movements] of Jimmy Lai every day. [This monitoring] included following him whenever he went out for a meal or made a trip to the airport. He also explained that this was referred to as baai wai or “putting [someone] in a position” [擺位]. After the questioning, the defence quoted articles from the Oriental Daily and suspected (?) that when the newspaper reported on Lai’s arrangements [事宜], they depicted him in a negative light. In response, the victim said “We report things as they are” [我哋係如實報道].
● 音樂亭 yām1 ngohk6 tāhng4= (?) music pavilion ● 意圖 yi3 tòuh4 = an intention; (an) intent ● 受驚 sauh6 gīng1= be frightened by sth.; be startled
The accused Jimmy Lai (72 years of age) denied that his threatening of X on 4 June 2017, near the music pavilion [音樂亭] in Victoria Park, could cause physical harm to another person or that he intended to startle him [i.e. X (?)].
認定期在黎家門口守候 / He acknowledged that he regularly kept watch at the entrance to Lai’s residence
黎由資深大律師 Peter Duncan 及大律師許卓倫代表。X在辯方盤問下，透露現時在《東方日報》任職採訪主任，他於2013年前加入「專案組」，兩年後成為小組主管。小組會定期在黎的家門守候，尾隨對方活動，例如黎外出用膳時會在餐廳外等候，亦試過跟著黎前往機場。至於有無跟過黎的子女上學，X稱如誤以為黎在車上便會跟隨，但他本人未試過。
● 守候sáu2 hauh6 = 1. to wait for; to expect 2. to keep watch ● 任職 yahm6 jīk1 = to hold a post; be in office ● 主任 jyú2 yahm6 = director; head; chairman ● 主管 jyú2 gwún2 = 1. be responsible for; be in charge of 2. a person in charge
Lai was represented by Peter Duncan QC and the senior lawyer Lawrence Hui Cheuk-lun. When questioned by the defence, X revealed that he currently held the position of head of [gathering] news at the Oriental Daily. He joined the “special case group” before 2013, and two years later took charge of it. At regular intervals, the group kept watch at the entrance to Lai’s residence, and tailed his movements. for instance, when Lai when out for a meal someone would wait outside the restaurant. He had also been followed out to the airport. As to whether Lai’s children had been followed on their way to school, X claimed that this had happened only when they mistakenly believed Lai to be in the car with them, but he himself had never done such a thing.
黎在港便會「擺位」/ If Lai was in Hong Kong, he would be “put in a position”
When asked whether the group constantly tailed Lai, X replied: “No, not when he wasn’t in Hong Kong.” He also said that the group had other work to do. When the defence asked him whether the special case group would monitor Lai every single day if it had no other work to do, X admitted that they would, saying: “We called it baai wai or “putting [someone] in a position” [擺位].
眾多行家擠迫才會近距離拍黎 / Lai would only be photographed if there were crowds of other journalists [行家]
● 座駕 joh6 gaa3 = one’s private vehicle or car ● 行家 hòhng4 gāa1 = cognoscente, conoisseur, of expert opinion ● 操守 chou3 sáu2 = personal integrity
The defence quoted from several articles and said that in August 2014 it was reported that Lai was suspected of knocking over a reporter while driving when being pursued for an interview [追訪], and causing injury. An image that formed part of the story showed a large number of people [多人] surrounding Lai’s vehicle. The defence asked X whether these reporters giving chase were acting in a manner consistent with journalistic integrity [有無遵守新聞操守]. X said that he wasn’t present at the scene and with regard to the image responded: “If the car was blocked so that it could not continue on its way, that would certainly violate the code of conduct [違反操守], but I don’t know what happened in the next second [after this image was taken].” He went on to claim that Lai would not be photographed at close range unless there were crowds of other journalists around him.
強調如實報道 / [He] emphasized reporting things as they were
● 有負面咪報負面囉 is a good example of the pairing of 咪 with the final particle 囉. As Yip and Matthews note, the combination “suggests that what follows is an obvious conclusion” and is used in sentences such as 你做得唔開心咪揾第二份工囉 = If you’re not happy in your work, then find another job (Intermediate Cantonese, Unit 23). ● 競爭對手 gihng6 jāng1 deui3 sáu2 = competitor ● 翻查紀錄 fāan1 chàah4 gei1 luhk6 = “rummage around through the records”
The defence then read from another article and posed the question whether the Oriental Daily presented Lai in a negative light. X said: “We report things as they are. If things are negative, we report them negatively, if positive then positive.” He agreed that the Oriental Daily and Apple Daily were serious competitors, [but] would have to look back through the records to determine whether there had [ever] been any positive reports on Lai or Apple Daily in the Oriental Daily.
指訃告非新聞 / He said that an obituary [for Lai] was not news
● 訃告 fuh6 gou3 = obituary ● 傳霉 chyùhn4 mùih4 = (?) to infect with a sexually transmissible disease ● 節哀順變 jit3 ōi1 seuhn6 bin3 = to restrain grief and accept the change; an expression of condolence for a bereaved person
The defence went on to say that in August 2014 the Oriental Daily published an obituary which said that “Lai Chi-ying” [黎志英 sounds exactly like Jimmy Lai’s Chinese name, 黎智英] had passed away, having contracted AIDS together with various kinds of cancer. The final line of the obituary read: “We offer our condolences to the two staff members who passed on the infection [傳霉]”. X claimed that this was not news and was not sure whether it had anything to do with Jimmy Lai.
Cynthia went to the island of 鹽田梓 Yim Tin Tsai in Sai Kung four years ago, and instantly felt a strong attraction to the traditional practice of sea salt-making carried on there. Watch this video and I think you’ll get a good sense of why this might be so.
I particularly enjoyed this clip for the way it brings together words, images and music in a beautifully holistic way: the result is certainly greater than the sum of its individual parts. There are also some wonderful things in it for anyone learning Cantonese, although it has to be said that Cynthia’s enthusiasm for salt accelerates the speed of her talk, sometimes to the point of incomprehensibility for a non-native speaker . . .
In terms of grammar, you’ll be struck at once by Cynthia’s preference for a 依 yī1 over 呢 nī1/lī1 for the meaning of “this; here”, etc. Secondly, she has a fondness for 囉 lō1, a final particle that has been perplexing me for some time! From the three uses of it in this video, I get the impression that one of its uses is to modify the force of an assertion. Whenever Cynthia makes a claim for something, she tends to add 囉, perhaps to make her assertions more acceptable to a (sceptical) listener:
● 「鹽」，用一個字去形容可以係「甜」囉。 If I had to [choose] one word to describe “salt”, I would say “sweet”. ● 噉其實係好 . . . 做到我想要嘅嘢囉。 Actually, this is a good thing . . . and does the things that I would like to have. ● 噉喺依個時代冇咁有無力感囉 Then there wouldn’t be such a feeling of powerlessness in this period.
You will also notice two instances of a 透過 tau3 gwo3, which is used in Cantonese to indicate the means by which an action is done, and an occurrence of the final particle 噃 bo3 in 環境好似唔錯噃 = The surroundings do not seem too bad at all. There’s plenty of colourful vocabulary here, too, including 一脚踢 yāt1 geuk3 tek3, literally “one-foot kicking”, that means “to single-handedly oversee a project entirely”, as well as the unusual verbs 嗒 daap1 or dep1 = “to try and assess a taste” and 打卡 dáa2 kāat1 = “to take a selfie at some tourist hotspot”.
The reporter at HK01 for this clip was 溫嘉敏 (Wān1 Gāa1 Máahn5), the camera person was 林頌華 (Làhm4 Juhng6 Wàah4), while 曾雁翔 (Jāng1 Ngaahn6 Chèuhng4) was responsible for the editing.
You can watch Cynthia on the HK01 website here. Unfortunately, there are no English subtitles, so if you’d like a translation, please scroll down. And if you’d like extra help with any of Cantonese, remember to make use of the Sheik Cantonese on-line dictionary.
Perhaps by the end you’ll be at least a little more inclined to believe that salt is sweet, as Cynthia says at the beginning.
If I had to [choose] one word to describe “salt”, I would say “sweet”.
● 爲止 wài4 jí2 forms a usual structure meaning “up to; till”, and routinely goes together with a preceding 至 ji3 or 至到 ji3 dou3. So, 至到依刻爲止 = up to the present moment. ● 結晶 git3 jīng1 = a crystal; to crystallize ● 雀躍jeuk3 yeuhk6 = to be over the moon; happy; glad
In fact, from the first day I [came to work here] as a volunteer, I actually get excited and over the moon [雀躍] whenever I see salt.
The reporter speaks:
● 一脚踢 yāt1 geuk3 tek3 = to single-handedly oversee a project entirely; to undertake the whole thing by oneself; a one-man company (lit. one-foot-kick)
Cleaning up and fetching water, Cynthia oversees these things herself.
● 曬鹽 saai3 yìhm4 = to evaporate brine in the sun to make salt
Four years ago, Cynthia began helping to make salt at [these] saltworks.
● 日曬雨淋 yaht6 saai3 yúh5 làhm4 = exposed to the sun and the rain
She did a degree in social work, but she braves the hot sun and the rain to come to Yim Tin Tsai.
● Note that 嚟 làih4 is used to express purpose: to use land for [the purposes of]. ● 項目 hohng6 muhk6 has the basic meaning of “item”. It is one of those nouns like 情況 chihng4 fong3 that get used a lot in Cantonese, but which often don’t really need to be translated.
Land in Hong Kong is mainly used [for the purposes of] real estate in Hong Kong.
● Here, I think 吖嘛 aa3 maa3, the double particle suggesting “obviousness”, means “as we all know”.
● 竟然 gíng2 yìhn4 = unexpectedly | This generally signals the speaker’s attitude to what is being said. ● 產量 cháan2 leuhng6 = output ● Note the use of the aspect marker 返 fāan1 here, to indicate a going back to a previous state of affairs, or a resumption of something that has been interrupted. The suggestion in this sentence is one must go back to protecting certain historical and cultural values. ● 傳承 chyùhn4 sìhng4 = to impart & inherit
But there is so much room on this island, and so things are done here that are not [connected with] economic output, [but which] are purely [about] protecting certain historical and cultural values, and with carrying on [e.g. “traditions”] [belonging to] a certain time in history.
● 緊密 gán2 maht6 = tight and close ● 一啲 yāt1 dī1 = some; some more
My feeling is that the relationship between human beings and nature could be a bit closer.
● 咁啱 gam3 ngāam1 = what a coincidence; by chance; it just so happens ● Note that in 嚟自, the 自 jih6 means “from”. ● 透過 tau3 gwo3 = through; by; by means of; by way of ● 成就 sìhng4 jauh6 = to achieve; to accomplish ● 必需品 bīt1 sēui1 bán2 = a necessity; an essential (thing) | cf. 生活必需品 = life’s necessities
Here, as by coincidence, [we have] that opportunity [that is, to do things that are not purely connected with economic output], because salt comes from [that is, “is a product of certain factors such as”] the sky and from the sea, so through human agency [透過人] this thing [called] salt comes about. Furthermore, this salt is a necessity for human beings.
噉其實係好 . . . 做到我想要嘅嘢囉。
Actually, this is a good thing . . . and does the things that I would like to have.
● 技藝 geih6 ngaih6 = skill; artistry
The entire salt-making process is carried out by means of the most traditional skills.
● 雜質 jaahp6 jāt1 = impurities ● 釋放 sīk1 fong3 = to release; to let out ● 礦物質 kong3 maht6 jāt1 = mineral ● 微量元素 meih6 leuhng6 (?) yùhn4 sou3 = (?) trace element
Many impurities [雜質] have already been largely removed [lit. 釋放 sīk1 fong3 = released], while what remains in the grains of salt are the minerals and trace elements in the brine.
And so for this reason many kids who come here say of their own accord [自己會話] that as soon as they taste a grain of salt, it tastes sweet.
● 嗒 dāap1 or dēp1 = to try and assess a taste; lick (Sheik Cantonese)
Because a grain of salt is nice to taste and has a good flavour [too].
● 大個咗 daaih6 go3 jó2 = get a bit older; grow up & become an adult ● 回甘 wùih4 gām1 = an aftertaste, especially a sweet one.
But when you get a bit older, you will understand the use of another adjective [to describe you experience of salt]. That adjective is wui gam, “having a sweet aftertaste”.
The reporter speaks:
● 掣肘/制肘 jai3 jáu2 = to hinder so.; to stop so. (from) doing sth.; to restrict; to impede | 肘 means “elbow” in classical Chinese
The salt fields are quite extensive, but there has always been a shortage of people to help do the work, and this has been an impediment to the wish for further development.
First of all, we have had a shortage of people.
Secondly, owing to the lack of people, we do not produce enough.
● 應承 yīng1 sìhng4 = to promise | The addition of 得到 suggests the ability to succeed in an action (Tong & James, Colloquial Cantonese, chapter 10), although 可以 here also indicates possibility. Remember that with this meaning 到 changes tone and becomes high-rising: dóu3*2! The further addition of 住 jyuh6 seems unusual here. My guess, based on the work of Yip and Matthews, is that adds the sense of “a continuous state without change” (Intermediate Cantonese, p.100).
And so for this reason up to now we have been unable to make any promises [regarding] the plentiful opportunities for collaboration.
● 體力勞動 tái2 lihk6 lòuh4 duhng6 = manual labour; physical work ● The phrase 幫到手 is another example of 到 dóu3*2 suggesting success in doing something = “to manage to help”. Because 幫手 bong1 sau2 is a verb-object compound (手 means “hand”, making this verb similar in meaning to the English “to lend a hand”!), 到 is placed between the two parts of the verb.
Because it really is [a matter of] physical labour here, it has always been fantastic when younger people lend us a hand.
Because I have taken a lot of photos, and so have my friends, and my friends who have worked as volunteers.
● 無理由 móuh4*5 léih5 yàuh4 = without reason | cf. 理由 leih5 you4 = a reason, ground or argument ● 㗎嘛 gaa3 maa3 is a contraction for 嘅吖嘛 ge3 aa3 maa3, in which 嘅 increases the force of the assertion and 吖嘛 suggests obviousness or perhaps even “beyond the shadow of a doubt”. In this sense, 嘅 ge3 is the opposite in function to 囉 lō1, which weakens or downplays sureness.
But there is no point in us taking all these photographs just for me to look at.
● 噉咪 involves one of the numerous special meanings of 咪 maih6. My provisional explanation that it is very similar to the sentence opener 噉就 gám2 jauh6, which suggests sequence: “Then . . .” + Observe how 橫掂 wàahng4 dihm6 = “anyhow; anyway; in any case; regardless” and 不如 work together in this sentence, meaning something like “since this is the way it is, I might as well . . .” Sheik Cantonese provides a similar example: 橫掂都出咗嚟，順便去睇戲啦 = Let’s go for a movie as we are already here anyway! Typically, too, suggestions made with 不如 bāt1 yùh4 require 啦 lāa1 at the end of the sentence.
So, given this [橫掂都係喇] [I thought] why not start a Facebook site and use Instagram, then put up some photos where they could serve as a record?
● 優質 yāu1 jāt1 = top quality; high grade
People could see [for themselves] just [what] top quality salt in Hong Kong has.
The reporter speaks:
● One of the meanings of 噃 bo3 is affirmation. I don’t hear it very often and, when I do, it is usually from an older speaker. This instance shows that younger people can use it too. Another example of affirmative 噃 is 我記得唔係咁噃！ = I remember it wasn’t like that!
The surroundings do not seem too bad at all.
● 打卡 dáa2 kāat1 = “to take a selfie at some tourist hotspot”. My sense here is that 個 go3 is added to this verb-object verb not to quantify the action (“take one selfie”) but to add a casualness to the activity akin to like “take a few selfies; just to take a selfie or two”.
If someone just felt like coming here and taking a few selfies, and then [decided to stay on] to do two or three days of volunteer work, would you accept them?
● 大把 daaih6 báa2 = “a lot; many; a great deal of”. My sense is that 把 here is a kind of general measure word (or classifier), perhaps loosely connected to its verb meaning of “to hold; to grasp”, suggesting “a (big) handful of”.
As a matter of fact, on this island of ours, actually there would be quite a lot of work available to you once you get here.
● 落去 lohk6 heui3 is basically a particle added to a verb to indicate direction, “down”). However, 落去 also has the extended meaning of “to keep on doing”. This may be another small piece of evidence suggesting that the Chinese view of time is a movement downwards towards the future.
If you had the heart [心], actually, and wanted to keep on [working], [then] as a matter of fact that would be no problem.
Now the smashed bouquet: Victorian poppies, daisies, crocuses and roses gardened to perfection on a nineteenth-century tea-saucer park for good their shell-thin porcelain scatter on today’s black concrete floor. The crisp, telling blow of this out-of-the-blue musical destruction still tinkles aftertones through a pair of shocked ears listening hard for the mind to catch up — once again — to the everyday- unforeseen. In the same way, a small green bird stunned against invisible outdoor glass stares hard at the rich spilt yolk pooled at its feet from a delicate, delicately broken miscarried egg.
This article by HK01 reporter 梁子傑 Leung Tsz-kit brings us up to date with the situation of 戴耀廷 Benny Tai, who was dismissed from his teaching post at Hong Kong University at the end of July. It outlines Tai’s response to this next phase in his life, introduces us to his innovative Rule of Law Rebirth Project, and touches on the prospect of Tai’s being charged under the new National Security Law for his role in the very successful primary elections held on 11-12 July. The keynote is rebirth.
● 校委會 haauh6 wái2 wúi6*2 = university committee; university board; university council ● 接納 jip3 laahp6 = to admit; to accept ● 發起 faat3 héi2 = to initiate; to start ● 大比數 daaih6 béi2 sou3 = (?) majority (in a vote) ● 淪陷 lèuhn4 haahm6 = 1. (of territory) fall into enemy hands; be occupied by the enemy 2. to submerge; to flood; to inundate ● 力挽狂瀾 lihk6 wáahn5 kòhng4 làahn4 = to pull strongly against a crazy tide; fig., to try hard to save a desperate crisis, overcome impossible odds, seize victory from the jaws of defeat
At the end of last month (28 July), the HKU Council did not accept the recommendation to retain the position of Benny Tai, one of the initiators of the Occupy Central Movement and Assistant Professor in the Law Department of HKU, voting 18 to 2 for his immediate dismissal. In an interview with RTHK, Tai said that at present Hong Kong society is going under [淪陷] and that universities are powerless to resist the tide and protect academic freedoms. It was his wish that university heads would dare to speak the truth in an era filled with lies.
● 角色 gok3 sīk1 = a role; a part ● 衝上天空 chūng1 séuhng5 (?) tīn1 hūng1 = (?) flying straight up into the sky | cf. 衝 = 1. to charge; to rush; to dash 2. to soar; to skyrocket; to shoot up; to rise rapidly
Tai said that he felt freer after being forced to leave Hong Kong University, a place where he taught for nearly thirty years, because after leaving he could find new roles [for himself]: “Just like a bird flying straight up into the sky, I feel, strangely [反而], an ever greater freedom. Even if one is unable to stay in one [particular] place, I believe that that the sky is vast. Yes, you could think of it as [可以算] the end of one phase of [my] life, but it is also the beginning of another.
● 感慨 gám2 koi3 = to sigh with emotion ● 學府 hohk6 fú2 = seat of learning; institute of higher learning ● 守不住 sáu2 bāt1 jyuh6 = unable to guard; unable to defend ● 獨存 duhk6 chyùhn4 = to exist on its own; to stand alone ● 張翔 Jēung1 Chèuhng4 = Professor Xiang Zhang, President and Vice-Chancellor of HKU | 翔 = to circle in the air ● 到港日子尚短 = has not yet spent much time in Hong Kong| Note: 尚 seuhng6 = still; yet
With regard to the current [state] of academic freedom in Hong Kong, Tai sighs with emotion [over the fact that] Hong Kong’s highest seat of learning has been unable to defend academic freedom: “When the whole of Hong Kong is going under, HKU cannot stand alone, and both the university and its vice-chancellor are powerless to resist the tide.” He [went on to say] that he has no great hopes for the vice-chancellor Professor Xiang Zhang because he has not been in Hong Kong for long, and that the ideal university head should dare to speak the truth at a time filled with lies.
近日，戴開展「香港法治重生計劃」（Hong Kong’s Rule of Law Rebirth Project），冀在社區推動法治教育工作。他稱，雖然「法治已死」，但仍有機會重生：「我們要有死亡的覺悟，但亦要有重生的盼望，現在香港正經歷死亡的歷程，但當我們有重生的盼望，我們有的就不是一種無力感，而是學習忍耐等候。」
● 冀 kei3 = to hope; to long for; to look forward to ● 推動法治教育工作 = to promote rule-of-law education work ● 覺悟 gok3 ngh6 = consciousness; awareness ● 盼望 paan3 mohng6 = to hope for; to long for ● 歷程 lihk6 chìhng4 = a course (that a certain process takes) ● 忍耐 yán2 noih6 = to exercise patience; to exercise restraint; to restrain oneself ● 等候 dáng2 hauh6 = to wait; to await; to expect
Just recently, Tai has launched [his] Hong Kong’s Rule of Law Rebirth Project in the hope of fostering the work of education [with regard to] the rule of law. He states that although “the rule of law is dead”, there is still the chance of a rebirth: “We must have an awareness of [this] death, but we must also harbour an expectation of its rebirth, giving us then not a sense of powerlessness but the learning of patient anticipation [忍耐等候].
● 初選 chō1 syún2 = primary elections; a straw poll ● 誠惶誠恐 sìhng4 wòhng4 sìhng4 húng2 = in fear and trepidation ● 坦然 táan2 yìhn4 = calm; unperturbed; having no misgivings
With regard to the claim that [指] the democratic parties’ organizing, planning and participating in primary elections may constitute a violation of articles 20, 22 and 29 of the Hong Kong National Security Law, Tai said that he felt fear and trepidation but would face [this possibility] without misgivings, and would continue to maintain a purity of heart. Tai also believes that he has gained more than he has lost: “At the beginning, few people walked this road [with me], but now, as the way gets darker and darker, the number of people walking with me is, however, growing.
My own understanding of the great work when I was quite young. At the time, I was some eleven years old. My family was moving from a more settled part of a small southern town out to the edge of town where the new house was being built. The house, not yet finished, was situated on a slight incline. Down below was a small creek and there across the creek was a meadow. It was an early afternoon in late May when I was first wandered down the incline, crossed the creek, and looked out over the scene.
The field was covered with white lilies rising above the thick grass. A magic moment, this experience gave to my life something that seems to explain my thinking at a more profound level than almost any other experience. It was not only the lilies. It was the singing of the crickets and the woodlands in the distance and the clouds in a clear sky. It was not something conscious that happened just then. I went on about my life as any young person might do.
Perhaps it was not simply this moment that made such a deep impression on me. Perhaps it was a sensitivity that was developed throughout my childhood. Yet as the years pass this moment returns to me, and whenever I think about my basic life attitude and the whole trend of my mind and the causes to which I have given my efforts, I seem to come back to this moment and the impact it has had on my feeling for what is real and worthwhile in life.
This early experience, it seems, has become normative for me throughout the entire range of my thinking. Whatever preserves and enhances this meadow in the natural cycles of its transformation is good; whatever opposes this meadow or negates it is not good. My life orientation is that simple. It is also that pervasive. It applies in economics and political orientation as well as in education and religion.
摘自《偉大的事業──人類未來之路》作者托馬斯 ● 貝里 [美] 著 [Thomas Berry: The Great Work: Our Way Into the Future]（1990 年）
Photograph: 香港錦田：小溪流 Small creek in Kam Tin, Hong Kong (2016)