I Like Chinese

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"I Like Chinese" is a comedic song written and performed by Eric Idle and arranged by John Du Prez.[1] It features on Monty Python's Contractual Obligation Album from 1980, and is also included on the CD Monty Python Sings.

The song has four verses; the first discussing how the world has become a terrible place (due in part to "nuclear bombs that can blow us all sky high"). The song then segues into an jaunty melody in which the singer states that he "likes Chinese". Broadly outlining stereotypes about Chinese people (an example of this is the stereotype that Chinese people are short, in the line "They only come up to your knees"), it also outlines the achievements of China and its people, including Chinese food, maoism, taoism, I-Ching, chess, penjing ("I like their tiny little trees"), Zen, ping pong, Yin and Yang, and Confucius. Near the end of the song, an erhu starts playing to add more Chinese atmosphere.

The song is sung in English, and the fourth verse contains lyrics in Mandarin.

The version appearing on the Monty Python Live (Mostly) stage show includes an accompaniment of dancers in Chinese costumes, and has additional lyrics, for example referring to the Chinese as "still a little communese".

In Australia, the song is used in television advertisements by electrical retailer Bing Lee (as "I like Bing Lee").[2]

Chinese lyrics[edit]

The Mandarin lyrics to the fourth verse are:
我爱中国人 / Wǒ ài zhōngguó rén. (I love Chinese people)
我爱中国人 / Wǒ ài zhōngguó rén. (I love Chinese people)
我爱中国人 / Wǒ ài zhōngguó rén. (I love Chinese people)
你好吗, 你好吗, 你好吗, 再见! / Nǐ hǎo ma, nǐ hǎo ma, nǐ hǎo ma, zàijiàn! (How are you; how are you; how are you; goodbye!)


  1. ^ Monty Python Sings CD booklet. 1989 Virgin Records
  2. ^ ""The Lee who put the ping in Bing dies aged 75"". The Sydney Morning Herald. 2007-12-22. Retrieved 2008-01-12.