Chinese Corner


“开口” means to “open one’s mouth,” and “跪” means to “kneel.” This term, coined by Chinese netizens, literally says “Once someone opens his or her mouth, I feel like kneeling down in front of that person.” This is a very exaggerated way to praise someone for their voice or singing/speaking skills. On rare occasions, it’s also used as a satire on those who speak or sing unbearably badly. Here the use of “kneeling” is the same as in a previous popular term “给跪了,” showing extreme admiration (rarely, shock) towards someone or a happening. It’s curious that the emoticon “orz” for “kneeling” symbolizes the emotion of “admiration” in Chinese but “frustration” in English.
A: 你有没有看快乐男声?
Nǐ yǒuméiyǒu kàn kuàilè nánshēn?
Did you follow “Super Boy,” the singing contest?
B: 最近没有。
Zuìjìn méiyǒu。
Not recently.
A: 有个选手叫尹毓恪,那可真是开口跪。
Yǒugè xuǎnshǒu jiào yǐnyùkè, nà kě zhēnshì kāikǒuguì。
There’s a contestant by the name of Yin Yuke. Well, he has a fantastic voice.