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Joe's Cafe


Personal blog of EnglishClub founder Josef Essberger - see Menu

Principle or principal?

Here are two more words that sound exactly the same but have different meanings. Read on »


Discreet or discrete?

These two words sound exactly the same but have different meanings Read on »


Some seek knowledge

“Some seek knowledge for the sake of knowledge – and that is curiosity. Some seek knowledge that they may be known to have knowledge – and that is vanity. Some seek knowledge that they may give to others their knowledge – and that is charity.”

Bernard of Clairveaux
Saint Bernard of Clairveaux was a French abbot of the 12th century.


I shall not pass this way again

I expect to pass through this world but once;

any good thing therefore that I can do, or any

kindness that I can show to any fellow-creature,
Read on »


April Fool’s Day

April 1st is called April Fool’s Day in English, and it’s a day when people play jokes on other people. They can be small, personal jokes or tricks, or big “industrial-size” hoaxes by newspapers or television channels like the BBC. Read on »


Swiss Spaghetti Harvest Hoax

Below is probably the most classic April Fool’s Day hoax of all time. On April 1st, 1957 the BBC ran a short programme about a bumper spaghetti harvest in southern Switzerland, showing spaghetti growing on trees. Many people believed the programme and phoned in to ask how they could grow their own “spaghetti tree”.

Read on »


I wish I loved the Human Race

I wish I loved the Human Race;

I wish I loved its silly face; Read on »


How many words in Shakespeare?

Several sources claim that Shakespeare used nearly 30,000 different words in his works. However, we need to ask what we mean by “different words”. Is it reasonable to count go and going and gone as three different words? If we count go and going and gone as one word (GO), then Shakespeare used fewer than 20,000 “different words”.


What is it?

Riddles are short poems or texts that ask a question that seems difficult to answer. The following famous riddle by Catherine Fanshawe is talking about something, but what is it? Read on »


Best holiday

Tell us about the best vacation (holiday) you’ve ever taken. Where did you go? Why did you like it?