I'm trying to complete some Chinese homework, and in it, one of the assignments includes a comic. We're supposed to write a story based off the comic. The comic includes a girl introducing various friends to her Chinese grandmother. The friends are Sara, Rose, and Robert. The grandmother, being fluent in Chinese, misinterprets the various names as "salad" (I assume "沙拉"),a form of meat (I assume "肉丝"), and "carrot". I have no idea how "Robert" sounds like any form of "carrot" in Chinese. The various translations I've found are 胡萝卜, 红萝卜, and 胡萝匐, none of which sound anything like "Robert". What other translations of "carrot" are there?

3 Answers 3


Very amusing! This is the problem with Pinyin! Once on my way to 南昌, almost there, the conductor on the train came walking through, saying loudly: Lan Chang dao le, Lan Chang dao le! I thought for a minute I got on the wrong train.

It has not been decided whether R is R or L.
It has not been decided whether L is L or R.
It has not been decided whether F is F or H.
It has not been decided whether H is H or F.

Therefore, 萝卜(Luó​bo) is an approximation to Robert and 沙拉(Shā​lā) equates to Sara.
If you come from a province whose name begins with H, you may be from Fujian! (Old Chinese joke.)

Edit: yesterday, in the kitchen, listening to the radio news. My Chinese friend said, "Oh, they say Inter has problems." Me. "Inter?" "You know, the American company that makes computer processors."


It's 萝卜, not 胡萝卜.

BTW there're many terms for 萝卜 in Chinese, such as 胡萝卜, 红萝卜, 白萝卜, 青萝卜, 水萝卜, and so on.


"蘿蔔" in "紅蘿蔔" (carrot) / hung4 lo4 baak6/ (Cantonese); hong2 luo2 bo (Mandarin) sounds like "Robert"

"沙拉" (salad) /saa1 laai1/ (Cantonese) ; /sha1 la1/ (Mandarin) sounds like "Sara"

When I said a Chinese word 'sounds like' an English word, I meant it is the closest sound-alike Chinese character we can find to match the English pronunciation of a specific English word.

The term '蘿蔔' alone means "radish; turnip"

"carrot" is always '紅蘿蔔' in Cantonese and '胡蘿蔔' in Mandarin

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