I'm Feeling Very Blue 我感到很忧伤

每一个民族都有自己的说话和表达的方式。而很多普通的美国人喜欢用颜色来表示。

红色是很火热的颜色,因此美国人常常用来表示激动的心情。对于某件不公平的事情,他们可能会用“red hot”来表示心中的怒火万丈。但是“red hots”(仅仅是多了一个s)却又表达另外的意思。在墨西哥餐里常常有那小小的红辣椒,因为它的颜色和很辣的口味,(hot又表示“辣”)这些红辣椒也被称为“red hots”。另外,对很多人喜欢的,那种又快有响的音乐,有人也用“red hot”这样的词来描写这种音乐,尤其是指那个成名的“迪克西兰德”爵士音乐。

粉红色是比较浅的红色。当人们感到健康的时候,有的人就会说他们是“in the pink”的状态。在美国,这种说法起始于二十世纪初。其来源可能是因为在健康婴孩出生的时候,他们的皮肤显示了嫩嫩粉红肤色的缘故。

蓝色是很酷的颜色。传统的美国蓝调(blue)音乐就是具有与red hot音乐相反的一种风格。蓝调音乐具有缓慢、忧伤、和充满感情的风格。杜克·爱林顿和他的乐队录制了一首很著名的曲子 Mood Indigo深蓝调)表达了很深的blue感情色彩。这首曲子的歌词中唱到:“没有达到深蓝调,你就还不是属于蓝调。”属于蓝调的人是一群非常忧伤的人。

绿色是大自然树木和草地的颜色。但是对人类来说,这却不是一种自然的颜色。如果一个人的胃有些不舒服,她可能会说她感到有点绿色(green)。如果在船上,有人因为很大的波浪感到晕船,这个人就可以被描写为“脸色发绿(look very green”。

有的时候,一个人感到心里烦躁,因此不能成为一位和蔼可亲友人,行为鲁莽如同一匹野马那样。这个人就可以说自己是“green with envy”。另外有些人“green with envy”是因为他的朋友比他更有钱,更有greenbacks。美元又被称为“greenbacks”,因为纸币的背面是绿色的。

黑色常常用来描写感情。如果有一天人们感到所有的事情都搞糟了,他们就会把这一天描绘成“black day”。同样地,遭受大灾难的一天也被称为“black day”。使用“黑名单(blacklist)”现在在美国已经是非法的了,但是曾经有过。那时,有些老板把一些不受他们欢迎的组织的成员列入黑名单,不招收他们。

有的时候,美国人用颜色来描写某种情况。用“brown out”来表示电力不够,这种情况出现在太多的用电户同时需要电力,而电力公司又无法提供所需要的电量。“black outs”主要是描写在第二次世界大战期间,当敌机在夜间侵入企图轰炸的时候,当局要求大家关掉所有的灯,增加敌机寻找目标的困难。


讨论问题

1.        在你的母语里是否也有用颜色来表示的句子?请举例说明。

2.        颜色常常是与人们的感情连在一起的。一般你会使用什么样的颜色来表示你的感情色彩?请解释一下为什么用这样的颜色。

3.        颜色也会影响你观察事物和处事待人。比如,你是否因为食物的色彩而改变你的食欲?如果有这样情况的话,你不喜欢吃什么颜色的食物?

4.        室内装潢的颜色会影响环境和人的心情。对你来说,什么颜色最舒服?什么颜色最不舒服?

5.        是否有一种颜色会使你回想起某件往事?

Every person has his/her own way of saying things, its own special expressions. Many everyday American expressions are based on colors.

Red is a hot color. Americans often use it to express heat. They may say they are red hot about something unfair. When they are red hot they are very angry about something. The small hot tasting peppers found in many Mexican foods are called red hots for their color and their fiery taste. Fast loud music is popular with many people. They may say the music is red hot, especially the kind called Dixieland jazz.

Pink is a lighter kind of red. People sometimes say they are in the pink when they are in good health. The expression was first used in America at the beginning of the twentieth century. It probably comes from the fact that many babies are born with a nice pink color that shows that they are in good health.

Blue is a cool color. The traditional blues music in the United States is the opposite of red hot music. Blues is slow, sad and soulful. Duke Ellington and his orchestra recorded a famous song – Mood Indigo – about the deep blue color, indigo. In the words of the song: “You ain’t been blue till you’ve had that Mood Indigo.” Someone who is blue is very sad.

The color green is natural for trees and grass. But it is an unnatural color for humans. A person who has a sick feeling stomach may say she feels a little green. A passenger on a boat who is feeling very sick from high waves may look very green.

Sometimes a person may be upset because he does not have something as nice as a friend has, like a fast new car. That person may say he is green with envy. Some people are green with envy because a friend has more dollars or greenbacks. Dollars are called greenbacks because that is the color of the back side of the paper money.

The color black is used often in expressions. People describe a day in which everything goes wrong as a black day. The date of a major tragedy is remembered as a black day. A blacklist is illegal now. But at one time, some businesses refused to employ people who were on a blacklist for belonging to unpopular organizations.

In some cases, colors describe a situation. A brown out is an expression for a reduction in electric power. Brown outs happen when there is too much demand for electricity. The electric system is unable to offer all the power needed in an area. Black outs were common during World War Two. Officials would order all lights in a city turned off to make it difficult for enemy planes to find a target in the dark of night


Discussion Questions

1.        Are there similar expressions using color in your language? Please explain the meaning of such expressions.

2.        Color is often linked to one’s mood.  What color would you say describes your general mood? Please explain why.

3.        Color can also affect the way you see or do things. For example, do you like to eat food based on its color? If so, what is one color of food that you stay away from? 

4.        Interior room colors can create a mood or atmosphere. Is there a particular color that makes you feel very comfortable in or one that you feel uncomfortable in?

5.        Is there are color that brings back a memory for you?


Comments