Catch Phrase | 三和大神 (sānhé dàshén)

Writer: Li Dan   |  Editor: Zhang Chanwen  |  From: Shenzhen Daily  |  Updated: 2022-09-22


“三和” is the name of a low-end job market in Longhua District, Shenzhen, southern Guangdong Province, and “大神,” which literally means “big god,” is used by Chinese netizens to jokingly refer to those with extraordinary skills in a certain field, such as computer experts, those we might think of as geeks. Featured in a 2018 NHK documentary, “Sanhe big shot” refers to a group of young migrant workers who lead a low-quality, low-cost living near the Sanhe Talent Market. Unlike the majority of a new generation of skilled blue-collar workers on automated production lines, these people take low-tech and low-efficiency day jobs, such as working construction or security. Their mantra is “Work for a day and party for three.” They will check in at a small inn or take a quick nap on the sofa of an internet bar when they have cash with them; otherwise, they just sleep under a footbridge or elsewhere without a roof over their heads. These people don’t address themselves by this term; rather, it is a romanticized nickname thrust upon them by outsiders, some of whom may admire this group’s Hippie spirit.


A: 你表弟还过着三和大神的日子吗?

Nǐ biǎodì hái guòzhe sānhé dàshén de rìzi ma?

Is your cousin still leading the life of taking day jobs and living from hand to mouth?

B: 没有。他回老家找了一份送快递的全职工作。

Méiyǒu。Tā huí lǎojiā zhǎo le yīfèn song kuàidì de quánzhí gōngzuò。

No. He has returned to his hometown and found a full-time job as a delivery guy.