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Lesson Transcript

Hello, and welcome to the Culture Class- Holidays in Hong Kong Series at CantoneseClass101.com. In this series, we’re exploring the traditions behind holidays and observances in Hong Kong. I’m Eric, and you're listening to Season 1, Lesson 24- April Fools' Day, or 愚人節 in Cantonese.
Although not everyone will deliberately trick others on this day, many do in Hong Kong. Let's hear about a few incidents that have happened on April Fools' Day in Hong Kong!
But before we get into more detail, I've got a question for you- There is a Chinese folktale about a fool. Have you ever heard of it?
If you haven’t, we’ll go over it a bit later, so keep listening!
In Hong Kong, most of the April Fools' Day mischief takes place in online chat rooms and on forums. They are usually silly jokes like the death of a celebrity, or the collapse of a big company. But some people use it in a different way. Some teenagers take advantage of this day to confess their love. This allows them to see the person's reaction first, and if rejected, they can say that they were just joking, or 講笑 in Cantonese.
Even though it’s considered okay to carry out a prank on this day, it's better to make harmless jokes. Actually in Hong Kong, a joke has caused physical or mental harm or panic in the past. In 2003, during the outbreak of SARS, or 沙士, in Hong Kong, a high school student created a fake news item. The news announced that Hong Kong had become an epidemic area, or 疫區, and that all sea, air, and land transport would shut down. This news spread rapidly on the Internet and caused panic among the public. The government convened a press conference to refute the rumor and arrested the student, but still many people went into a panic.
On the same day, many people found a news article on the Internet about the suicide or 自殺, of Hong Kong superstar Leslie, or in Cantonese, 張國榮. Since it was released on April Fools' Day, almost everybody assumed that it was a joke until it was officially revealed to be true. This sent people into even deeper shock.
Unlike some foreign countries, the news media in Hong Kong do not create false news for April Fools' Day. But still, you need to check if it’s true or not when you see a surprising news item on this day.
Now it's time to answer our quiz question - There is a Chinese folktale about a fool. Have you ever heard of it?
The title is the Foolish Man Moving Mountains, or in Cantonese, 愚公移山. It’s a famous folktale about an old man who decided to move two mountains blocking the road. After hearing him say he was going to move mountains, everyone said he was foolish. But his determination and perseverance convinced the Jade Emperor, 玉皇大帝, who finally moved the two mountains away for him.
How was this lesson? Did you learn anything interesting?
Is there a lot of mischief on April Fools' Day in your country?
Leave us a comment at CantoneseClass101.com
We'll see you next time!


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😄 😞 😳 😁 😒 😎 😠 😆 😅 😜 😉 😭 😇 😴 😮 😈 ❤️️ 👍

CantoneseClass101.com Verified
Monday at 06:30 PM
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Is there a lot of mischief on April Fools' Day in your country?

CantoneseClass101.com Verified
Thursday at 05:36 PM
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Hello robert groulx,

You are very welcome. 😇

Feel free to contact us if you have any questions.

Good luck with your language studies.

Kind regards,


Team CantoneseClass101.com

robert groulx
Tuesday at 09:58 PM
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thanks for the lesson

my faorite is 愚公移山.

we celebrate this holiday on april 1st