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Shi Shi Shi Shi (Reasons To Learn Canto #220)

The above film is a true picture of what Hong Kong will be like if the Chinese government get its way in forcing all us lowly subjects to speak the holy language Mandarin, or Putonghua

Be The Gwai!

The other day one of my students created a brilliant slogan. I was telling her about how local Chinese people think all Caucasians are complete idiots who can’t read numbers, don’t know what milk is

Dragon Year – How Can You Get Through It Without Cantonese???

So it’s a new year again, this time rather more important than just old 2012 – it’s the year of the DRAGON. Full of upheavals and excitement, it is also the luckiest year in the

Mainland Charmer Sugarcoats Words:

So this is how the common or garden mainlander sees HK people… No. of course not. This geezer is just an army of one. A rabid minority misunderstanding his own nationality. Oh, and a professor

New Canto Film!!!!!

It’s been a year but finally more Cantonese. If you want to be in a film, give us a shout! This one wasn’t as easy to make as normally, logistically. But with iMovie and some

Good Old Aluminium Man

Yesterday we finished shooting In A Whorehouse – The Sequel, so soon there will be a brand new Canto extravaganza on YouTube. About time, some would say, as the last one, ‘Romeo and Juliet –

New Podcast! (From Sober to Drunk in 10 Minutes)

Last weekend saw me in Guangzhou with the ridiculously handsome and delightful Kendall, a Guangzhou resident (above) to shoot my new Cantonese-worshipping movie ‘In a Whorehouse – The Sequel’. I will say no more about

A Way To Benefit From Not Joking On Stairs:

Yesterday I had a lesson at home with one of my Lantau contingent, a shy girl called ah-Kei. A big part of my language teaching is trying to get people to understand that no matter

New Bust-blocker from Happy Jellyfish People’s Democratic Language Bureau!

Damn – I’ve done it! I’ve gone and betrayed my love, the Cantonese language. Well, all I’ve said about it is true and right, and it is my beloved language number 1A. It’s just that

Hono Begging For Your Patronage (Writing Course This Saturday)

I’m not kidding! After my book launch on the 6th of October where about 60 or 70 people descended, drinking hundreds of bottles of beer in the quiet time of the restaurant, the owner of

Today’s* Weather Condition: 太陽

(*Not “the weather today” as it’s again: FOGGY AS HELL! 有好大霧呀!Yao hou dai mou ah!) In fact this morning it looked like this:

No, I was thinking of the weather, some weather, a weather (天氣)(Tin hei) last week, namely this:

有太陽 (yao tai yeung) Have sun. 楊 (yeung) is the yeung in 陰陽 (yan yeung) – yin and yang. 太 (tai) means supreme. So “the sun” means something like: Supreme masculine force! Cool? Or what?
There is another word for sun, namely 日(yat). That has come to mean “day”, as in 今日太陽好犀利呀 (gam yat tai yeung hou sai lei ah) Today the sun is formidable (strong).

I’m putting this here as a not so subtle message: Enough with the damned fog!

Caring and Sharing

I’m currently in Hunan province and thought I would share this, one of many wonderful English signs we’ve seen during the last few days, with you. Throwing garbage into the dustbin is indeed lofty behaviour, and one that should be enforced rigorously.

If you like English but are, for some reason, worried about travelling in China, I think you should take a trip as soon as possible anyway, just to enjoy the ‘signage.’ Every four or five meters you’ll find a gem, such as the hotel we found this morning called “Here is a Hotel.” And the sign we saw later on warning people against forest fires: “Do not fire within the area to prevene smoking.”

Mainland. Love it!

Last Product Placement – Today

So I’ve made this two-hour Cantonese learning DVD as I’ve mentioned once or twice. Here is a short excerpt giving you a little glimpse into Going Native. It’s only HK$100, including shipping inside Hong Kong,

More Proddie Placie. I’ve Earned It.

Finally it’s here (maybe you didn’t even know that it was going to be here???) – the second installment of Cantonese – The Movie. This DVD, all two hours of it, is for people who

A Little Proddie Placie

Wei wei, it’s finally happening: I’m launching my new book Don’t Joke On The Stairs on Blacksmith Books this week. I actually wrote most of it four years ago and had signed a contract with


Here’s a joke that I’d like to share with all Cantonese speakers/learners – well, not all. It only works if you’re caucasian. In Norway we have a saying: Beloved child has many names. So it

By Popular Demand (Journey Into the Hinterland)

.. an old podcast: A Sojourn in Shenzhen. Yes, one whole person has expressed interest in hearing it, so I must oblige. Also I happen to be going to Shenzhen again tomorrow as part of

Non-white IS The New Black

Oh, whoops, how did a burqa sneak in there? Must have been the word ‘black’. Anyway, so most of my students have the same complaint: No matter how good their Cantonese is, Hong Kong people

дима: Ты лучше всех!

I’ve just come back from another Russian lesson with the excellent Dimitri. People: You think Cantonese is difficult – try Russian. Every word, I mean noun, adjective, verb and adverb, has hundreds of different forms.

Next Year’s July 1st

So, last Friday, July 1st, I went to Victoria Park to check out the action and also make a podcast: Happy Jellyfish’s Outcast at 1st of July Extravaganza 2011 Oh, it was great. The carnival-like

PODCAST!!!! Warning: Contains Interview With Longhair!

Friday I went to Victoria Park to see what the people are against this year. Many of them were very against Stephen Lam (林瑞麟)Lam Seui Leun, who they called a (something) dog. Not running dog,

Farewell Naked Cantonese, Well Hello There … Name?

SO! That was the end of Naked Cantonese. Four years of laughter and tears, trying not to say “crap” on live radio, trials and tribulations, toilets and twits. Although I’ve only ever listened to one

Even More About That 嗰!

The New China Bookshop in Guangzhou, or actually, the New China Bookshop in general, is a real treasure trove. Look what I found there last weekend, a map of Mexico with all the towns and villages in Chinese characters! Simplified, but still Chinese.


There were many other maps there too, but the one of Mexico particularly caught my attention. Because I really want to go there. Is it because of Breaking Bad? Or all the western movies I watched as a child, with one hombre chasing another hombre across the endless plains of I knew not what? Or is it because of this photo I took on the edge of the Taklamakan Desert in Xinjiang province? I just feel it’s taken in … Mexico. 墨西哥 (Mak Sai Go – Ink West Older brother)


In the last couple of articles about that 嗰 (go) We discussed that one 嗰個 (go go) and those 嗰啲 (go di). But there’s more to the 嗰 – heaps more!

All my students learn 呢度 (li dou – This Location or Here) with ease. But when it comes to 嗰度 (go dou – That Location or There), up come the frontal cortex (or something) barriers. I don’t know why. 呢(li) is everything that’s close and here, this, and 嗰 (go) is everything that’s further away or something we’re talking about, that.


我想去墨西哥城!(o seung heui Mak Sai Go Seng! – I want to go to Mexico City!)
嗰度有好多博物館 (GO dou you hou do bok mat guhn – THAT location have well many erudite-matters-hall [there are many museums there]).

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