Half Real, Half fake
A breakdown of the characters in 半真半假 (bàn zhēn bàn jiǎ):
真(zhēn): real (真实 - zhēn shí)
假(jiǎ): false (假币 - jiǎ bì)
You know to watch out for counterfeit RMB.
But did you know you should also watch out for RMB that’s only half real?
It’s a kind of “mutant counterfeit currency” (变种假币 - biàn zhǒng jiǎ bì) that has appeared in recent years. Sometimes the counterfeiters cut the bill in half up the middle and stick them together. Sometimes, they actually cut the bill so that it’s half as thick!
As always, there is a great chengyu for this phenomenon 半 真半假 (bàn zhēn bàn jiǎ).
半真半假 literally means “half real half fake” and it’s used for anything that’s not completely real. It can be used for both abstract concepts and tangible things. It’s important to note that it doesn’t necessarily have a negative meaning, and can also mean “half-jokingly” or “half-seriously”
“我们手牵手逛大街小巷，半真半假地 穿情侣T恤 “
“wǒ men shǒu qiān shǒu guàng dà jiē xiǎo xiàng, bàn zhēn bàn jiǎ de chuān qíng lǚ T xù”
“We held hands and strolled the streets and alleyways, and half-seriously wore matching couple T-shirts”
“...bàn zhēn bàn jiǎ de dōng xi jiù chéng le shì shí”
“...something that was only half real became completely real”
“...hùn zá zhe hěn duō bàn zhēn bàn jiǎ de yáng pǐn pái”
“there are many half real, half fake foreign brands mixed in”
“wǒ gēn tā bàn zhēn bàn jiǎ de shuō, yǐ hòu wǒ gěi nǐ xiě yī běn shū “
“I told her half-jokingly, later I’ll write you a book”