Learners of English cannot be said to have a mastery of the language until they are able to use colloquial expressions with ease and familiarity and have a wide vocabulary. Acquiring this, of course, takes time. Lydia Teh’s very clever Eh Po Nym columns on the Mind Our English pages of The Star not only help learners build up their stock of language, but do it in a fun way and with a decidedly local flavour through the accounts of the adventures and misadventures of the eponymous hero.Eponymous /Eh Poh Nym ... geddit?
If you want a taster, Lydia has archived some of her columns here.
And the always enterprising lady actually created this fun bookformercial to promote it:
And on her blog, Lydia has a competition with some tasty prizes - go see.
An aside. Lydia and I were debating this word "suspenders". In Malaysian English guys sometimes use the term to mean "underpants".
"That's wrong," said Lydia "it refers to the things that men keep their trousers up with."
"Nope," said I "It's the thingies that keep up ladies' stockings when they want to look sexy."
She was arguing for the American definition of the word (which seems to be the most widespread in Malaysia), and I was arguing for the British English definition.
I actually find it quite a hoot when Malaysians say they follow British English, because although the spelling system might follow the later, the accepted vocabulary is a mix of both - influenced strongly by the media. (There's a great academic study in there for someone ...)
But this diversity gives Malaysian English it's character ... something that the book celebrates very well indeed.