Essential Chengyu: If you’ve ever spilled coffee before – 粗心大意


Do you know anyone who’s really careless?

Perhaps they’re always spilling something, forgetting dates, or bumping into things?

Perhaps that person is you (I know it’s me)?

Here’s a chengyu to describe that person: 粗心大意(cū xīn dà yì).

粗心大意(cū xīn

Essential Chengyu: Like a fish in water – 如鱼得水


Do you ever have those moments when you know your Chinese is on?

When you almost feel like you were born to speak Chinese?

When you feel like a fish in water?

If so, or if you’re

Essential Chengyu: If you want to become fluent, don’t 半途而废


Is there a shortcut to Chinese fluency?

If you’ve been reading our blog, you probably know our position already: no. There are ways to learn faster or better, but to really get fluent, there is one key condition: you have …

Chinese Slang: “Leftover Girls” and “Diamond Wangs”


We couldn’t make this up if we tried.

A new Chinese slang word has emerged in recent years that literally means “leftover girls.” It’s used to describe urban women who enjoy a high level of education, income, IQ, and have …

Essential Chengyu: Another way to say “Cute”


It’s time that you learned another way to say “cute” aside from “可爱 (kě ‘ ài),” which you probably learned in first year Chinese. How about something more nuanced – like “dainty”: 小鸟依人 (xiǎoniǎoyīrén)?

小鸟依人 (xiǎoniǎoyīrén) basically means that someone

Use the right “experience” at your Chinese job interview


It seems like everyone is interviewing for a job in China these days. And such interviews are often in Chinese. One word will separate the winners from the not-quite-winners: “experience.” There are two words for it in Chinese – 经验(jīngyàn)

Essential Chengyu: How to say “spur of the moment” – 心血来潮


Telling a story can be a major challenge in Chinese. Next time you’re telling your Chinese friend how you ended up in China, or how you asked that person out on a date, use this chengyu: 心血来潮 (xīn xuè lái