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FOREWORD Hi! That's me on the cover having a good laugh. I had just read a funny story and I laughed so hard I nearly wet myself! Luckily I didn’t do that but I did laugh hard enough so that my eyes watered and I shed tears. Watch out for someone who sheds “crocodile tears”, though, because that person is tricky and two-faced. That’s not me! In this book are 25 stories that were created to make you giggle and help you learn 50 common English phrases. These phrases are highlighted; more examples of how they are used can be found on page 119. You can also ask your parents to scan the QR codes to listen to the author reading each story. So what are you waiting for? Get snappy and sink your teeth into these stories!


CONTENTS Comics: It's flag day!


1: Useless burglar clowns


2: T he best fighter ever


3: T he mighty oak followers


4: Strong outside, weak inside


5: Mummy’s boy


Letter: Mummy's boy complains a lot


6: T he strict policeman


7: When luck never runs out


8: Flush out the thieves


9: Lisa’s lack of common sense


10: Searching for "rare" toilet paper


Letter: Train ride gives Maisie pure joy


11: T he rubbish robbers


12: Eddie the fearless egg


13: A web of lies



CONTENTS 14: T he cheat among champions


15: Barry the burper


letter: Barry wants to stop burping


16: T he silly policeman


17: Learning commas the hard way


18: T he modern art critics


19: T he human rubbish bin


20: Stingy Steve


Letter: Steve's cheap night out with a girl


21: T he book of fears


22: T he special singer


23: Sleepy Sarah’s silly slip-up


24: Gordon Gecko's fantastic tail


25: T he smelliest boy in the world


Letter: Sid loves his natural body smell


50 commonly-used phrases


Comics: T he Jokers League Vs Cockroach Man






T was 3am and Happy Street was very quiet. The Wongs had gone on holiday and so the burglar clowns were breaking into their flat to steal things. Bozo, Bubble, Bobo, Bam-Bam and Benny quietly crept into the living room. But the problem was that they made a lot of noise. They just could not help clowning around. "OK, boys. Put valuable things inside your bag," Bozo, their leader, whispered. "And no clown tricks."


Bobo did not listen to him. He saw some nice cups on the shelf and threw them in the air to juggle them. "Put them down!" Bozo ordered. Bobo was startled and the cups fell from his hands and smashed on the floor. The clowns did not move. Nobody knocked on the door so they were safe. "Hey, Bubble," Bam-Bam said.


"Why is a Maths book always unhappy? Because it is full of problems!" "Haw, haw, haw, haw!" Bubble laughed so loud tears were running down his cheeks and ruining his white make-up. "Ssshh! Keep quiet!" Bozo said. He told the others to finish the job and pulled out a chair to sit on. Just as Bozo was about to sit down, Benny pulled the chair away. Bang! Bozo hit the ground hard; the other clowns laughed out loud. Bozo was angry so he pulled down Benny's trousers. The clowns saw that Benny had pictures of Mickey Mouse on his underwear and fell about laughing.

A fear of clowns is called Coulrophobia. I have this and I am really terrified of them!


Benny took out his fake gun and squirted water into everyone's face. They were having so much fun. "Ssshh! What's that sound?" Bozo asked. It was a police siren. The police were coming! "Let's get out of here quick!" Bubble said. They all ran out through the front door and down the stairs. However, their shoes were twice as big as their feet. They tripped over each other and landed at the bottom of the stairs in one big heap. The police easily found them and arrested the clowns. "You clowns always get arrested for burglary," a police officer said. "Just stick to your day job." Could not help (to do something) 雖然這片語(phrase)直譯是「不能幫」,但 它其實和幫助別人沒有關係;它的意思是「不 由得」、「忍不住」,就好像小丑們,他們自 制不了自己,不停開玩笑。下次如果你有個同 學在班上放了個響屁而令你忍不住笑的话,你 可以這樣說:“I couldn't help laughing at the boy accidentally farting in class.”

Scan to listen to the story





OOD morning, class. Today will be the last lesson on punctuation before the exam. I am going to teach you how to use the comma." Jake rolled his eyes and did not bother to to his teacher. Another boring English lesson Miss Bean, he thought. He believed commas pointless since everyone knew where to pause reading.

listen from were when

On the day of the English exam, the students read the essay's instruction: Write about a family


gathering you enjoyed recently. Jake wrote his essay quickly and did not check his writing. A week later, Jake was at home watching TV with his mum and dad. Crash! The front door was smashed open and 20 police officers stormed in with their guns pointed at Jake and his parents. "GET DOWN ON THE FLOOR!" a policeman screamed. The stunned family quickly did as they were told and they were handcuffed and thrown into a police van. At the police station, Jake was put in a dark room with only a table and three chairs. The door opened and two detectives walked in – one looked


mean, the other looked friendly – and sat opposite him. "We can do this the easy way or the hard way," the friendly detective said. He then took out Jake's exam paper. "Did you write this essay for an English exam?" "Y-Yes, sir," Jake replied. "And did you write this … My mother is a great cook. She likes cooking our dog and our family."* "No I didn't mean that!" Jake exclaimed. "Don't play games with me, boy!" the mean detective said. "Did you not also write this … When the food was put on the dining table, my dad said, 'Time to eat Grandma!'"** "Yes I did but not in the way you said it!" Hours later, the police searched Jake's home and found the dog sleeping in the kennel in the back garden. They also found out where his grandmother lived and saw that she was alive. The police were satisfied no crime had occurred and finally let


Jake and his parents go. On the way home, Jake's mum read his exam paper and saw what was wrong. "You silly boy! We were arrested all because you did not use any commas!" Do you think my teacher called the police when I wrote 'I could murder a drink'?

*She likes cooking, our dog and our family. **Time to eat, Grandma!

Roll (someone's) eyes 這慣用語的直譯是「滾動你的眼睛」,但意思 其實是「翻白眼」,即「輕視某人或某事」。 主⻆ Jake 對老師「翻白眼」,因為他覺得老師 所教的標點符號微不足道。例句:“Ivan rolled his eyes when his dad started dancing to hip hop music.”

Scan to listen to the story


50 Commonly-used Phrases Phrases



Could not help (to do something)

--I couldn't help laughing at the boy accidentally farting in class. --Sam couldn't help but grin at Chan Sir sneezing loudly.


Day job

--Your audition was terrible! Forget about a movie career and don't quit your day job. --Olivia wondered if she should find a parttime job on top of her day job.


Go through

--I went through so many hardships but they made me stronger than ever. --Bianca has to go through tough training to become a wrestler.


Knock someone out cold

--The boxer knocked his opponent out cold and won the match. --The boy was knocked out cold when he hit the heavy ball with his head.


The head of

--The head of the spoon bending society is a great leader. --The head of the company fired everyone.


Put words in (someone’s) mouth

--I did not say that! You're putting words in my mouth. --The Jedi Knight used mind tricks to put words in her mouth.


書    名: ONLY JOKING 笑到碌地 系    列: 笑住學英語系列 出版總監: 梁子文 作    者: Simon Lau 插    畫: William Ma 中文撰寫: Alexandra Kwan 責任編輯: 陳東紅 校    對: Kevin Chu 封面設計: 阿倫 出    版: 星島出版有限公司                 香港新界將軍澳工業邨                 駿昌街七號二樓 營運總監: 梁子文 出版經理: 倪凱華 出版統籌: 李鳳英、何珊楠 電    話: (852)2798 2579 電    郵: 網    址: Facebook: 發    行: 泛華發行代理有限公司 電    郵: 網    址: Facebook: 出版日期: 二零十八年七月初版 定    價: 港幣八十八元正 國際書號: 978-962-348-407-7 承    印: 嘉昱有限公司

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Only Joking  

A collection of 25 humorous short stories aimed at children and teenagers.

Only Joking  

A collection of 25 humorous short stories aimed at children and teenagers.