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First of all I have to say that the copyright to this story belongs to my flatmate. I’m very jealous about it, I wish I could be the horse’s mouth here.

Anyway, this is what happened: one night she and her friend got in a cab. The driver asked where they wanted to go, but the girls were not sure about the address and started discussing it at length. In the end, feeling a bit embarrassed, they apologised and explained that they’re American (both of them look Chinese).

‘Oh, so you’re from America?’, asked the driver and started speaking in English: ‘I love you. You’re so beautiful. I love your eyes.’

Both girls were a bit taken aback with this display of language skill and emotions.

‘Where did you learn your English?’, they asked.

‘Oh, just from American yellow movies’, said the cabbie.

Pause for explanation: yellow in China is an adjective that describes all things with sexual contents. In other words, what he said was: ‘I learned my English from porn!’.

All right. Maybe a bit too much information, but you have to appreciate the honesty. After a nonplussed moment of silence, my flatmate decided to continue the conversation.

‘So… erm… what kind of porn do you like better, Asian or Western?’

‘Why Asian, of course!’

‘Really? How so?’

‘Well,’ (here comes the bit where I really wish I was there) ‘in Western porn people are so brutal and uncouth, like, I don’t know… (making the appropriate sounds) UGH UGH GRUNT GRUNT… Whereas in Asian movies everyone’s so refined and delicate, like ooh ooh ahhh…

Point taken. Lesson learned: knowledge can come from the most unlikely quarters. Note to self: do not avoid cab rides in the future. Note to self no. 2: in the event of taking a cab, always be ready to put things on record.