Essential Chengyu: A chengyu for the dining room table – 津津有味


Food is a big part of Chinese culture. Unfortunately, you may find yourself overusing 好吃 (hǎochī – delicious), the word you learned after 你好 (nǐhǎo). Here’s a chengyu you can use next time you’re eating: 津津有味 (jīnjīnyǒuwèi).

津津有味(jīnjīnyǒuwèi)means to eat

How to say someone looks refined in a scholarly sort of way – 文绉绉


Some Chinese people wear glasses. If asked to describe those people, you might simply say “他戴眼镜” (tā dài yǎnjìng – he wears glasses) or “他看起来很聪明” (tā kànqǐlái hěn cōngmíng – he looks smart). But if you want to express yourself

How to say “that’s a bit of a stretch” – 牵强


There may have been days when you wanted to tell your Chinese friend, “that’s a bit of a stretch” or “give me a break.” At those times, you probably got by with a weak substitute, eg. “真的吗?” (zhēnde ma? – …

Chinese Learning Tips – 6 Reasons to Learn Chinese with Authentic Content


Throughout our blog, we focus on observing words as they are used “in the wild,” ie. as they are used by Chinese people in real life. This is deliberate. We think that authentic material is “good for you” in the

Essential Chengyu: A Chengyu for love, parties, and revolutions – 轰轰烈烈


Today’s Chengyu can describe love, movies, and revolutions. No, it’s not 热情 (rè qíng – passion). Impress your Chinese friends with a more nuanced phrase – 轰轰烈烈. 轰轰烈烈 (hōng hōng liè liè) is a word without a direct English counterpart.

How to say plan – 计划 vs. 规划


In English, we use the word “plan” in all contexts, whether it’s our “vacation plans” or the “economic recovery plan.” By contrast, in Chinese we have multiple words for those situations: 计划 (jìhuà) and 规划 (guīhuà).

Both 计划 and 规划

When you’re feeling defiant – 不服


Today we cover a word that is truly Chinese. It has no direct English counterpart and using it will make your Chinese sound more real and authentic: 不服 (bùfú).

不服 basically means to refuse to submit or yield to someone’s