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Cantonese Slang of the Week: Poisonous Guy

By Jenny Leung 1 November 2018
Made-up vocabulary only known to locals, words that consist of a mix of both English and Chinese, and double-entendres that make absolutely no sense – these are just a few of the things that make Cantonese one of the hardest languages to learn. So, we thought it was about time we gave you folks a quick lesson on some funny terminology, common phrases, and the latest Internet slang. We guarantee it will score you a few extra points with the locals!

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Poisonous Guy | "Duk Naam"

Used to describe the ultimate nerd, a Duk Naam is into everything from Japanese anime and superhero movies, to online gaming and action figures. This term actually comes from Japan, where the word “lonely man” has a similar pronunciation as Duk Naam. Eventually, it became a popular term used by many locals to describe introverted men who lack self confidence, are unattractive, and love to stay at home on their computer more than anything else.

Example: "I saw Ivan buying a bunch of comic books and anime figures in Mong Kok yesterday. Haha, what a Duk Naam!"
Read more! Discover more funny stories about Hong Kong.

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Jenny Leung

Senior editor

Born in Hong Kong and raised in the UK, Jenny grew up with the best of both worlds. She loves just about anything to do with music and doesn’t shy away from belting out a tune or two when it comes to karaoke. If she’s not out and about exploring the city and practising her photography skills, she’s probably tucked up in bed with a book or glued to her laptop doing her online shopping.