A travel writer from the National Geographic set herself a goal on her vacation to Belize: try not to use any single-use plastic. She ended up avoiding it 79 times.

“You don’t have to be perfect. Even if you mess up along the way, doing *something* makes a difference.”

And this goes for your English, too. It doesn’t have to be perfect; just do something.

Let’s all try to follow her example this summer. I’ll be back in September with more topics. In the meantime, there’s plenty in the archives to read, watch, and learn about, and then to talk about with your friends or write about in your porfolio.





Today is 7/10 — which can be read as “natto” so it has become natto day, one of the “faux-lidays” Japan is so famous for.

Others: 11/11 is Pocky Day and here’s something about Meat Day and Cat Day, and here’s a list of many more. The humor is something akin to Star Wars Day (“May the 4th be with you.”)

Natto is inexpensive and healthy, but it’s definitely an acquired taste. And if you’re not a fan, maybe try something more palatable like natto spring rolls. Here’s a recipe.

What’s your favorite way to eat natto?

What other “faux-lidays” do you know about?


This story from Atlas Obscura is about a restaurant in China that had an all-you-can-eat campaign that went awry.

An All-You-Can-Eat Restaurant Went Bankrupt Because People Ate Too Much

It links to the original article from the South China Morning Post, where you can read some more details and also see some of the comments, like these:

“The notice in Chinese said…. the restaurant was founded by a few inexperienced young people. That explains it. The bankruptcy is a direct result of such badly conceived promotion.

But I liked the owner’s attitude. He blames his own bad management rather than the customer’s bad behavior for his failure. such a person stands a good chance for future success. He is a young man and he has a lot of time to learn. I hope him well.”

And a bit more critical:

“China is still at a stage where greed overcomes refinement and good manners. The hordes who stuffed themselves with all you can eat at this restaurant are foolish.
This is bad for your health.
Your stomach is not a rubbish bin.”

Have you been to all-you-can-eat restaurants? Did you get your money’s worth?