like nothing

easychen

Senior Member
Chinese
Hi, everybody! Here's a text:

With the Olympics coming to Beijing in 2008, this is exactly what China needs from the mayor of the host city: The Olympics is not just another international conference. The city's infrastructure, tolerance and management skills will be tested like nothing since June 1989, when a huge crowd in Tiananmen Square exploded onto the history books in an unforgettable splurge of bloodshed.

Would anyone tell me what the term"like nothing" means here?

Many thanks!
 
  • la grive solitaire

    Senior Member
    United States, English
    like nothing = will be tested in a way that they haven't been tested since June 1989.

    Although understandable, I find the use of "like nothing" here odd and awkward...
     

    Dimcl

    Senior Member
    Canadian English
    It means that since June, 1989, "nothing else" has tested the city's capacity like the Olympics will.

    At first glance, I agreed with LGS' opinion until I re-examined the sentence. "like nothing" sounds like something a kid would say. I think that my perception was coloured by the fact that the original sentence had the phrase highlighted. Its meaning is "...tested like nothing has tested it since June, 1989..."
     
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