Idioms...Hokkien style

When words fail, use idioms… Hokkien style (58)

Hokkien, on the tongues of Tsinoys, has grown and evolved, taking on a life of its own. Sometimes words simply fail us. With some creativity, Tsinoys have strung together words to form colorful phrases that simply hit the bull’s eye. Here are some expressions unique to Hokkien as favored by Tsinoys.

好心被雷撞 ho sim t’o

lui tsing

kind hearted but still got hit by thunderbolts doing good to someone and yet is misunderstood or misinterpreted
猴腳戲仔手 kao k’a

hee-ah tsiu

monkey feet, slippery hands describing person who moves with awkward agility
窮人無富親 kieng lang bo pu tsin poor people without any wealthy relatives poor people are avoided by wealthy relatives
千家富不能蔭得一家窮 tsuin ke pu bue eem tit tsit ke kieng thousand wealthy families cannot share with one single poor family wealthy families do not help the poor ones
急驚風遇著慢郎中 kip kieng hong bu tiô ban long tiong acute illness meets slow doctor (long tiong, old way of addressing doctor) describing someone who doesn’t quickly respond even in an emergency situation