Words people think are English (eg. High, PK, Fighting)

Hi

I’m a student of Chinese and I’ve noticed that some Taiwan/Chinese people use words that they think are English but aren’t really used that way in English. Sometimes they even force these words into English sentances.

For example,
The word “high” is used in Chinese to express happiness (高興), whereas, as you probably know, if you use it in English, people will think you are talking about drugs.

Another example is the use of the word “Fighting” to encourage people (加油) and PK to talk about a head-to-head [elimination] competition.

Can you give me any more?

There are many; sometimes they are improvised by individuals. Another popular one would be the use of “man” as an adjective, meaning masculine. Still others: 3C and vs

I’m not sure I get the point exactly, but my daughter sometimes says to “close the light” instead of “turn off”, apparently because in Chinese you say to “close” a light (not that I know Chinese).

Nono… I mean “English” words that are used by Taiwanese when speaking Chinese, which don’t mean the same as in proper English. Your examples are more a case of chinglish

Yep! that’s it, 很Man is a good example.

DM, which I assume stands for “direct mail” or “direct marketing” because the person is usually talking about an ad.

Haven’t heard “fighting” for 加油. I’ve heard “go! go! go!” and the literal “add oil!” though.

VS is an interesting one. I used to wonder why the news was reporting so many fights.

I was under the impression that although people use PK they know it comes from Japanese from, I think, the very popular street fighter game. Many Chinese people when they speak Japanese might use “game over” in conversation but I don’t think they think it is a Japanese word.
They know PK is not an English word.

[quote=“Taigottawanna”]DM, which I assume stands for “direct mail” or “direct marketing” because the person is usually talking about an ad.

Haven’t heard “fighting” for 加油. I’ve heard “go! go! go!” and the literal “add oil!” though.

VS is an interesting one. I used to wonder why the news was reporting so many fights.[/quote]

I thought DM was used to secretly refer to “Death Metal”

[quote=“heimuoshu”]I was under the impression that although people use PK they know it comes from Japanese from, I think, the very popular street fighter game. Many Chinese people when they speak Japanese might use “game over” in conversation but I don’t think they think it is a Japanese word.
They know PK is not an English word.[/quote]
Well, when they asked about it, they said it was from “player-kill”, which, might make sense in certain online-gaming circles, but it is no way a standard English word.

“Nokay”

What do you think they mean by that?

earlier thread: Taiwanese misappropriating English words/letters/initials.

Not okay

Don’t get me started on toast.

What context do they use toast in?

toast = bread (untoasted)

marathon = running race (regardless of distance)

Not bread per se; rather they use toast to indicate sliced bread (sandwich loaf bread), even when untoasted.

I just got home from a class where someone used toast that way. It’s a tough one to break, since they never listen when I correct them, and I don’t always have time to stop what I’m talking about to correct it.

Bakeries here even use that on their English signs, which just confuses things for them, so it takes some explaining. Even after I’ve told them numerous times…

“But the sign says toast!”

I do miss the old “No Q” response to “Thank You”, which you used to hear all the time but rarely do anymore.

Mostly because, when someone said it to me, I used to like to come back with “And Fuh Q”.

Which people loved.

Alex Case, one of the hardest working bloggers in ELT, has a whole list of Japanese English (Japlish expressions) on his blog:

http://www.tefl.net/alexcase/teach-abroad/asia/japan/a-to-z-of-japanese-english-one/

Maybe someone with enough free time wants to put together an A to Z of Taiwanese English???

[quote=“tatterdemalion”]Alex Case, one of the hardest working bloggers in ELT, has a whole list of Japanese English (Japlish expressions) on his blog:

http://www.tefl.net/alexcase/teach-abroad/asia/japan/a-to-z-of-japanese-english-one/

Maybe someone with enough free time wants to put together an A to Z of Taiwanese English???[/quote]
Hmm… Well… I’m not in Taiwan anymore, so I doubt I’ld be able to.

Maybe, if we keep growing this thread, someone might be able to distill it down to a usable list.

As for me? Well, I’m currently writing a list of words NOT to say in English