Northern vs. Southern Vocab

Since I’ve always lived in southern China (Nanchang, Kunming, Guangzhou), it’s been fun to travel up North these past few weeks and hear the locals speaking Mandarin with slightly different vocabulary choices than I’m used to hearing in the South. This list is based on my incidental observations and isn’t meant to be comprehensive (or […]

Free Gift from

Shèngdàn kuàilè 圣诞快乐 everyone! (Such a strident seasonal greeting–it just doesn’t sound as merry in Chinese.) Before I get back to wrapping my gifts, I thought I’d mention an actual free gift (as opposed to this) available to everyone for the next week. Apparently, is doing a Christmas special offering unlimited Chinese lessons (voice […]

Learning from Others’ Mistakes

In addition to the endless hours of fun and instruction we can get from anecdotes of other foreigner’s mistakes, some careful listening and a little intuition can turn your Chinese friends’ English mistakes into hot Chinese-language tips. Chinese people often speak English as if it were Chinese, but with English words. This often causes mistakes […]