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At a Loss for Words: Top 6 “Aargghh” Words

Perplexing language mistakes.  Bewildering cultural chasms.  Head scratching conundrums. Learning Chinese, it can often feel as if you are simply jumping from mortifying moment to puzzling predicament.

As dedicated language learners, we all know the feeling of simply being at a loss for words.

Great news! You may be at a loss of words, but there is no shortage of ways in Chinese describing your mental state.

Today, lets look at 6 words in Chinese to describe moments when you are at a loss for any.

If you need some additional Chinese lessons after you’ve finished reading this article, head on over to FluentU.


6. 结巴 (jiē ba)- Stammer, not able to get words out coherently

他一生气说话就开始结巴

tā yī shēng qì shuō huà jiù kāi shǐ jiē ba

He starts stammering when he gets angry

5. 咋舌 (zé shé)- Left speechless or breathless

奥运冠军巨额奖励令人咋舌

ào yùn guàn jūn jù é jiǎng lì lìng rén zé shé

The huge sums awarded to Olympians leave people speechless

4. 无奈 (wú nài)- Helplessly frustrated

他这样说道,然后停顿了一下,无奈地叹了一口气

tā zhè yàng shuō dao, rán hòu tíng dùn le yī xià, wú nài de tàn le yī kǒu qì

After he said this, he paused and let out a helpless sigh

3.  无言以对 (wú yán yǐ duì)- Speechless, at a loss for words

山寨厂商事先将iPhone 5的外观设计在苹果发布会以前就申请成专利,这实在让人无言以对

shān zhài chǎng shāng shì xiān jiāng iPhone 5 de wài guān shè jì zài píng guǒ fā bù huì yǐ qián jiù shēn qǐng chéng zhuān lì, zhè shí zài ràng rén wú yán yǐ duì

“Shanzhai” factories applied for a patent on the iPhone 5 design even before Apple’s announcement, really leaving people at a loss for words

2. 无语 (wú yǔ)- No words, nothing to say

那些让人无语的“惊悚”纹身

nà xiē ràng rén wú yǔ de “jīng sǒng” wén shēn

Tattoos which leave people speechless in horror

 

And the best way to express your futile frustration?

 

1. 没办法 (méi bàn fǎ)- What can you do?!? Oh well!

我的儿子是个捣蛋鬼,我真拿他没办法

wǒ de ér zi shì gè dǎo dàn guǐ, wǒ zhēn ná tā méi bàn fǎ

My son is such a trouble maker, what can I do with him!?!

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