1. Just because a language uses a different morphological marker than English to mark tense doesn’t mean there are no tenses. 2. The alphabet may be phonetic, but it doesn’t do shit to help you learn how to read and write. 3. When you add in the 4 tones that go with the “limited” sound combinations, you will want to stick a finger in your brain and swirl it around a bit. 5. Mandarin is a tonal language, as in a language that distinguishes between tones. If you think that they are just inflections for mood, then I look forward to hearing you introduce your mother as a horse or your girlfriend. 8. Nouns don’t have plurals, and they do come with units of measure; units that need to be adjusted for every noun based on the noun’s characteristics, kind of like memorising a collective noun in addition to the noun instead. Easy as pie! 12. If you want to start a civil war, go ahead and tell the people of Hong Kong that writing in Mandarin and Cantonese is the same. 14. Provided that neither speaker has been taught explicitly in the other language, a Mandarin speaker and a Cantonese speaker can MAYBE understand 20% of what each other are saying. 15. Good luck memorising the other 3746204 characters!