Welcome to Taiwan’s premier English-only nightclub


One of my friends is fluent in both Mandarin and English. When she lived in Taiwan, she paid a visit to a nightclub whose gimmick was that you had to speak English. The target audience was not foreigners but rather native Taiwanese who learned English as a second language. My friend didn't have any problems with this rule, but many of the guests appeared to be struggling to conform.

My friend paid a visit to the ladies' room, and there she overheard a conversation between two other guests. (They were speaking in Mandarin. Apparently, the rules aren't enforced in the bathroom.)

"There's this cute guy out on the dance floor, but I don't know what to say to him. My English is not very good."

My friend told her, "That's okay. His English isn't very good either."

Comments (12)
  1. Lucas says:

    I’ve always wondered whether there were niche groups in Asia that are obsessed with Western culture as some Americans are with Japanese anime and such.

  2. Josh says:

    In Japan it’s a lot more than a niche. If you get a chance, read "Dave Barry Does Japan." It’s a humor travelogue which also covers the weird blend that arose from native Japanese culture and the near idolization of the U.S. after WWII. Manifests in business practices, the music scene, and in randomly putting (often meaningless or non-sequitur) English words and characters on clothing.

  3. Derlin says:

    Various Asian countries have "English Villages", though the fad may be waning.

    http://us.asiancorrespondent.com/korea-beat/-p-4972

  4. Anders says:

    There are few things I dislike as much as Swedes speking english with other Swedes for no reason.

    Here in Sweden a lot of the universities are trying to get more international students in their master programs and are holding more and more courses in english. The result is Swedish teachers speaking english with Swedish students, resulting in a worse education.

  5. anon says:

    Hm, I wonder which club?  There is a restaurant/club in Taipei that caters to white male expats, if you get my drift.  The most popular clubs do not have an English requirement as far as I know, but you will usually find a large percentage of clubgoers speaking English due to the party lifestyle of ABC’s.

  6. I’d like to know which club is that, so that I can visit next time in TPE

  7. dalek says:

    @anon

    Please please enlighten us on the party lifestyle of an abstract base class!

  8. monoglot says:

    Was the guy on the dance floor so stunning that there could be no mistake, or did your friend just think it safe to generalize from what she heard around her?

    [I thought it was clear from the story that she was reassuring the other woman by making a fairly safe generalization. -Raymond]
  9. xsoho says:

    wow, it must be "puma" club! I’d like to know where it is, my english is very poor :p

  10. lviolette says:

    Come on Raymond, fess up.  You were the guy right?

  11. Dean Harding says:

    I drove past that English Village in Korea, it’s not far from the DMZ and I was on the way to see that :)

  12. Cheong says:

    @Lucas: It’s not difficult to understand for the Japanese part, and it’s not just about anime. Taiwan has inherited a lot of traditions (The education structure, just to name one).

Comments are closed.