Catch Phrase | 吃土(chītǔ)

Writer: Debra Li  |  Editor: Stephanie Yang  |  From: Shenzhen Daily  |  Updated: 2020-11-26


“吃” means “to eat,” and “土” means “dirt.” Literally translated as “eating dirt,” this term originated from “Touhou Project” comics, in which a female character, without a dime and not being able to buy food, digs dirt in front of the shrine of her home to fill her stomach. Chinese netizens jokingly use the term to refer to the scenario when they have gone on a shopping spree during the Singles’ Day promotions and spent their next month’s living expenses, so that they have to “eat dirt” in the coming days. People say they are going to “eat dirt” after splurging on something.


A: 你的快递到了。又买了什么好东西?

Nǐ de kuàidì dào le。Yòu mǎi le shénme hǎodōngxi?

Your parcel has arrived. What did you buy?

B: 买了一堆护肤品,我准备好吃土了。

Mǎi le yīduī hùfūpǐn,wǒ zhǔnbèi hǎo chītǔ le。

I bought a lot of skincare products. Now I’m ready to eat dirt. (I’ve burnt a hole in my pocket.)