The Best Laid 安排(ānpái) of Mice and Men

Given how packed everyone’s schedules are, it’s become imperative that we “plan” or “make plans” in order to get everything done that we need to do, and see everyone who we need (or want) to see. It’s probably this way in your country, and it’s definitely this way in China. Enter: 安排.

As a noun, 安排(ānpái) means, “arrangement”, or, “plan”; as a verb it means, “to arrange,” or, “to plan”.

安排(ānpái): n. arrangement, plan
安排(ānpái): v. to arrange, to plan

lǎoshī bǎ míngtiān de huódòng ānpái yòu shuōle yíbiàn.
The teacher repeated the schedule for tomorrow’s activities again.

wǒ fúcóng lǐngdǎo de ānpái.
I follow the leadership’s plans.

Though perhaps mundane in its origins, 安排 has recently been co-opted into internet slang and more casual use. Below are three such examples:

(1) Used to express agreement with someone else’s plans

A: jīn wǎn yìqǐ qù yīnyuè jié?
Do you want to go to the music festival tonight?

B: ānpái!
Let’s do it!

(2) Used as a euphemism for something being banned
Netflix bèi ānpái le.
Netflix was banned.

(3) To rally to a cause; to express support for something (especially friends)

A: tāmen yǐjīng lián yíng hǎojǐ chǎngle.
They have won several games in a row.

B: ānpái!
Let’s get ‘em!

必须安排(bìxū ānpái):Express support for friends


Friend A: wǒ de diànyǐng shàngyìng le.
My movie is has been released.

Friend B: bìxū ānpái!
I’ll definitely go see it!

安排(ānpái) also lends itself to formal usages, as in, “被安排的明明白白(bèi ānpái de míngmíng báibái)”.

明明白白(míngmíng báibái) is an idiom meaning clear and unmistakable, or upright.

wǒ yǐjīng bǎ yìsi shuō de míngmíng báibái le.
I have made it clear.

míngmíng báibái de gàosù nǐ, wǒ bù dāyìng.
To tell you plainly, I don’t agree.

被安排的明明白白(bèi ānpái de míngmíng báibái) refers to one person’s plans, role, or time being arranged by someone else. For example:

Boss: jīn wǎn jiābān!
Everyone’s going to work overtime tonight!

Me (to another person): bèi ānpái de míngmíng báibái.
I don’t have a say in the matter.

HSK 3 quiz

Mike: 我最近想学中文了。
Tom: ______ 。

B.被安排的明明白白(bèi ānpái de míngmíng báibái)

You May Want to Learn More:
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Taobao – A Brand Becomes a Verb
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HSK 1 quiz

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