Tag Archives: Chinese

The Top 5 Languages of the Future

When thinking about the future, language might not be the first subject that comes to mind for you. But when imagining what the world might look like 10, 20, or even 30 years from now, it is a factor we should probably consider. With shifting political landscapes, and even our environment changing beneath our feet,(…)


Tips to Master the Easiest and Hardest Languages to Learn

The ease or difficulty involved in learning another language is often a factor in which ones we choose to study. High-school students tend to go with French and Spanish for a reason: because these are easier and take less time to learn than, say Chinese, or Hungarian. But others love tackling the hard ones because(…)


5 Things You Should Never Ever Do in Taiwan

Most travel guides have etiquette sections for Asia-bound travelers and would-be expats, and most of those contain situationally relevant advice for Taiwan, e.g.: Don’t stick your chopsticks standing upright in a bowl of rice, ostensibly because it resembles the incense burned at Buddhist temples. Never use your hands to beckon someone, and never gift clocks,(…)


7 Common and (Sometimes) Disastrous Mistakes of Newbies in Taiwan

The rookie ex-pat. Those that have lived abroad have been there: floundering, anxious, and overwhelmed. Like most jokes, it’s funny unless it’s happening to you. For the record, nearly every mistake described herein was committed by yours truly at some point in my journey; thus, I have a confident familiarity with both classes of mistakes.(…)


The 10 Sacred Words and Phrases Every Visitor to a Mandarin-Speaking Country Should Know

Whether you’re planning a short trip or a permanent move to a Mandarin-speaking country, you would be doing yourself (and ostensibly, others) a tremendous disservice by not familiarizing yourself with the basics of the language. In other words, it’s in your best interest to have – at the bare minimum – a handful of utilitarian(…)


The Post-Election Political Power Shift

The US election is over, and despite there still being the matter of the official electoral college vote of December 19th to make it a (dystopian) reality, it looks as though the world has got itself a new American president. We say the world, because despite the potential horrors American citizens are now facing in(…)


7 Gestures to Avoid in China

China holds a lot of mystique for many travellers, as an exotic Eastern land, with a completely different language, alphabet system, and culture. These differences can make it quite daunting, especially when it comes to communicating. Whether you speak Chinese or not, it is important to remember that non-verbal communication is just as important as(…)


Top Dialects of the Chinese Language

With well over a billion native speakers, Chinese is the most-spoken first language in the world. Geographically, too, China is an immense country. It should come as no surprise, then, that there are several important regional distinctions in the Chinese language. Indeed, there’s a lot more to Chinese than just Mandarin: there are many important(…)


8 Chinese Idioms to Impress Native Speakers

Every language has its own quirky sayings and expressions, but Mandarin has its own system of traditional idioms. They’re called chengyu and usually consist of four characters, which is why they’re often called four-character idioms. These chengyu aren’t the only idioms in Chinese, and while most come from ancient literature, they’re still common today. Although(…)