About Innocent English

InnocentEnglish.com began as a site to share my original collection of funny English mistakes I had collected from years of tutoring International students in English. It was also to promote my humor book of the same. A year later, the book had basically come and gone (mostly gone) and the website had about 20 visitors a day.

I began adding more blooper pages, and other types of humor pages, as well as cute animal pics. For a while, I started adding a resource section with other sections, including an online degree section and a personal finance section. I thought this would be easier than starting new sites. At this point, it would be too much trouble to move them, so they remain, though in the periphery.

If you have any thoughts or concerns about the site, please feel free to contact me. My contact info is on every page, in the left navigation table.

In case you are interested, here is the text from the “about” page from when the site first opened, way back in 2004, about the funny English mistakes section (which was all the site had then):

Several years ago, on a college trip to an orphanage in Mexico, I enthusiastically greeted each of the children with “Buenos Dios! Buenos Dios!” After many puzzled looks and much laughter, a friend explained, “You’re not saying “Good day.” You’re running around shouting “Good God! Good God!”

And recently a friend of mine told me that for the first few weeks when he was teaching English in Mexico, when students and others asked him his age, he would always say the same thing: Tengo 18 anos.” He of course thought he was saying “I have 18 years”. However, his pronunciation was not quite right, so instead of saying “I have 28 years”- Tengo 28 años- he actually said- and several times- “I have 18 anuses.”

Anyone trying to learn a new language is going to make a great many mistakes. It’s a natural, unavoidable part of the process. Although I have heard a few funny stories of English speakers saying funny things while learning a new language, the process of translating it back to English and the extra steps required in explaining the mistake tend to make it little funny to English speakers. I have heard there are Japanese and Spanish websites of funny mistakes English speakers have made when trying to use those languages (and if you start one, please feel free to use the two examples above!).

I have been teaching Conversational English for about five years, and am recently finished my Masters degree in Educational Psychology, with an emphasis on TESL. I have spent over 3000 hours tutoring one-on-one with ESL students.

This website, and the book Never Lick a Gift Horse in the Mouth!
And 400 Other Innocent Mistakes From New English Language Students contain part of my collection of innocent English mistakes from international college and professional students I’ve tutored in conversational and written English over the years.

A final note, just in case anyone has any doubt:
This English mistakes on this site and in the book are very definitely not meant to be in any way judgmental or negative towards anyone or any group for whom English is not a first language. Any of us learning a new language are in the same boat (as is evidenced by several sections, even those of us for whom English IS a first language have quite a bit of trouble at times…) These mistakes are offered in the spirit of enjoying the wonderful nature of any language, in which the smallest mistake can completely change the meaning, with unexpected and often humorous results.

Is “Engrish” a rude or offensive term?



InnocentEnglish.com’s custom design was done by Cory Miller Website Designs (The parts you like are his work, the part’s you don’t are Bryant’s). The design was loosely based on a design based on a design that was based on a design created by Brian Gardner Themes and Designs.



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