“潜” means “under the water,” and “规则” means “rules.” In contrast to “explicit rules,” this Chinese term refers to “implicit rules,” which are unwritten rules widely accepted and functioning in the society. In many instances, “implicit rules” can be another word for “underhanded deals,” like a salesperson of second-hand cars often overcharging clients, and some actresses sleeping with directors or producers to get a role.
Tīngshuō nǐ dǎsuàn mǎi liàng chē？
Are you planning to buy a car?
Shì a，wǒ xiǎng mǎi liàng èrshǒuchē lái dàibù，dàn yòu hàipà zāoyù qiánguīzé mǎi dào wèntíchē。
Yeah. I want to buy a used car for daily use, but I am deterred by the “implicit rules” in this trade, and fear that I might buy a problem car.