原创翻译:龙腾网 http://www.ltaaa.com 翻译:土拨鼠之日 转载请注明出处
论坛地址:http://www.ltaaa.com/bbs/thread-486257-1-1.html

Why do we sigh? – Sophie, aged 4, East St Kilda, Melbourne.

我们为什么要叹气?——索菲,4岁,墨尔本。



Dear Sophie,
Thanks for your lovely and excellent question about sighing.

亲爱的索菲,感谢你问了一个关于叹气的问题。

Since you asked a question about sighing, it is probably safe to say that you already know something about breathing. But, for the benefit of everyone else (who might not be an expert like you or me) I am going to talk a little bit about breathing first.

既然你问了一个关于叹气的问题,可以说你已经对呼吸有所了解。但是,为了帮助其他人(可能不像我们这样专业),我将先谈一谈呼吸。

You have two lungs that you use to breathe. Each lung is a stretchy sack, kind of like a balloon, but not empty like a balloon. Inside your lungs are millions and millions and millions of tiny sacks called alveoli. These tiny sacks called alveoli are very important.

你有两个肺用于呼吸。 每个肺都是一个有弹性的袋子,有点像气球,但不像气球那样空。肺部内有数以百万计的小袋子,叫做肺泡。这些叫做肺泡的小袋子非常重要。

To keep living, we need a gas called oxygen to be moved out of the air and into our blood. And that’s not all! We need another gas called carbon dioxide to be moved in the opposite direction: from out of your blood and into the air.

为了活着,我们需要一种叫做氧气的气体从空气中移到我们的血液中。这还不够!我们还需要另一种叫做二氧化碳的气体向相反的方向移动:从我们的血液中移到空气中。

For these two things to happen, the air and your blood need to be brought very, very close together. This is exactly what happens in the tiny sacks called alveoli that fill your lungs. If you don’t get oxygen in and carbon dioxide out, you will die, which is bad.

要促成这两件事情的发生,需要将空气和血液非常紧密地结合在一起。这正是在充满你肺部的叫做肺泡的小袋子里发生的事情。如果你没有吸入氧气和呼出二氧化碳,你就会死,这很糟糕。



When you breathe in, the tiny sacks called alveoli (seriously, your lungs are full of ‘em) get filled with air. At the same time, blood (pumped by your heart) flows around the sides of the tiny sacks.

当你吸气的时候,那些叫做肺泡的小袋子(说真的,你的肺部里充满了它们)里充满了空气。 与此同时,血液(由你的心脏抽吸)在小袋子的两侧流动。

This brings the air and the blood very close together and so allows the gases to move in the right direction (oxygen in, carbon dioxide out).

这使得空气和血液靠得非常近,并让气体向正确的方向移动(氧气进入,二氧化碳排出)。

Moving these gases is essential for survival, which means that breathing is essential for survival, which means the tiny sacks called alveoli are very, very essential for survival indeed.

移动这些气体对生存至关重要,即呼吸对生存至关重要,也即这些叫做肺泡的小袋子对生存至关重要。

Back to sighing

回到叹气这个事情上来。

Here’s the thing about the tiny sacks called alveoli: you have so many of them that, actually, you don’t need to use them all at once. When you are sitting quietly, you can get move enough gas by using just some of them.

关于肺泡你要了解一些东西:你有很多肺泡,而实际上你不需要一次使用全部的肺泡。当你静静地坐着时,只用其中一些就可以交换足够的气体了。



If you need to worry about remembering anything, Sophie, it’s that you should never stop asking this sort of lovely question. Congratulations: you are now an expert on breathing and sighing.

如果你害怕忘记任何事情,索菲,那就永远保持好奇心。恭喜你现在是一个了解呼吸和叹气的专家了。