Parading Around Saigon In Ladies Pyjamas With A Pet Chicken Leads Phúc Mập to YouTube Fame

Episode 6 - Phúc Mập

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Perfect for people with hearing issues or non-native speakers. This transcript is made by AI so is not 100% accurate.

[00:00:00] Niall Mackay: Welcome to another episode in season seven, 7 million bikes A Vietnam Podcast. If you are listening to this or you’re watching on YouTube, you will know by now we have passed 20,000 downloads, which if you look at the YouTube numbers, especially of my guests today, 20,000 downloads seems minuscule, but it actually puts us in the top 10% of podcasts worldwide.

[00:00:23] So thank you so, so much to everyone who supported every guest, every listener, every singer, every single person Lewis, right? My wife Adrie Lopez has been involved live when we couldn’t be here without you. So thank you so so much. I’m excited for today’s guest. He’s been recommended by a previous guest. One of my favorite episodes with Nam den the guest today is a YouTube content creator, a TV personality.

[00:00:47] So he also works with the previous guest Mika Chu. And he’s also an MC guys today. We have Hurley Phuc Map. Thank you for coming on this show.

[00:00:57] Phúc Mập: Thank you for having me excited to be here.

[00:01:00] Niall Mackay: So give me a bit, your background into your whereabouts in the states are you from?

[00:01:04] Phúc Mập: So I was born and raised in Florida. I studied at university of central Florida in Orlando, and after I graduated with a criminal justice degree, kind of illegal studies, I realized I didn’t want to work in that field at all.

[00:01:18] I had an opportunity to go work in a bar and the other side on the other side of Orlando went over there, worked in the bars for about five years and then. At that point, I had the opportunity to come out here to Vietnam. I realized it’s much better than downtown Orlando. In fact, I had a friend that was stabbed and died working in the bar down there.

[00:01:39] And after I left a few more people were stabbed or shot down there. And it was just a toxic environment that I was happy to get out of. I came over here for just a year of teaching. I wanted to bounce around in different countries, live in Taiwan, live in Japan. That was the plan. And then I fell in love with Vietnam.

[00:01:56] And this month, this month is seven years in

[00:02:00] Niall Mackay: Vietnam. Wow. Awesome. Congratulations now. But, so you’re what impresses me is. And so our listeners might not know this, so you’re almost, I guess, fluent in Vietnamese, you could. I feel like I’m decent. I feel like I can handle a handle myself. And the real test was getting on different TV shows where I don’t have the script before.

[00:02:21] Phúc Mập: And they just asked me questions while I’m on TV and I have to converse and, you know, respond intelligently in front of the entire country on these shows. And I think it worked out pretty well. So I won’t say fluent, but I know enough we’ll say that much.

[00:02:38] Niall Mackay: Yeah. Mika told us a funny story about her. She got a, she got a word wrong on a, on the TV show and then it completely changed the meaning.

[00:02:45] And it’s so difficult, but I don’t want to talk about it too much cause I I’m conscious. I talk about how difficult it is to speak Vietnamese on every episode because I can barely speak a word of it and that’s all on me. So, and you’ve been here almost the same time as me, so. Are you good at languages?

[00:03:03] Cause I I’m terrible at languages and I’m lazy. So it’s all my fault. I know Vietnamese is difficult and that’s part of it. But how did you manage to become almost fluent or very, very good at Vietnamese in six years, because there are people that have been here for 10, 20, 30, 4 years who still don’t speak about.

[00:03:18] Phúc Mập: When you ask it like that, I feel like I’m decent at languages. And I only know from my experience of studying Spanish I was in the IB program in high school, the international baccalaureate, and we required to study a foreign language for four years. On the final test, I got a five out of six and it’s like the AP test, or, you know, they send it off to get graded.

[00:03:39] And my Spanish skills were okay at that time. And I, you know, I didn’t really care because I wasn’t going to Spanish countries. I wasn’t using it. But when I came here I thought the same thing I said, wow, Vietnamese is very difficult. I don’t know if I’m going to be able to learn this. I did my teacher training here and part of it included Vietnamese classes for two weeks.

[00:04:00] So this is really hard. So I only learned funny lines, you know, like, oh, I’m deaf shy, I’m handsome. I only learned funny comebacks. And after I want to say. About a year and a half. I started dating my wife who is Vietnamese, and that gave me the motivation to actually get a tutor and put the time in. And I feel like that’s what it comes down to is having a motivation, having the reason.

[00:04:27] And it’s not so much her. We know my wife can converse in English. It’s her family knew Vietnamese are generally close to their families and we were just dating and I’d already met. Her family had already sat down for dinner a few times with them and it’s me. And like 10 Vietnamese people. I’m like, well, this is going to be awkward.

[00:04:46] If I don’t learn more Vietnamese. And here we are in 2021, I’ve lived in her family’s house for two years now. And she’s the only one that speaks English. So I speak Vietnamese all day here at the house.

[00:04:59] Niall Mackay: That’s awesome. It’s impressive as well, because I even, I do a joke on stage as well, but how there’s so many, obviously, Western guys with a, with a female, with a Vietnamese wife, sorry.

[00:05:11] And they basically could have a teacher and instead they use her as a translator. And I know some Western guys who’s Vietnamese. It has gotten worse almost since they met a Vietnamese partner like that. So it’s impressive that you then recognize that and then, then took the steps to actually lay on it, you know, and the reason I asked that you’re good at languages was just to make myself feel better because I’m terrible at languages.

[00:05:38] I studied French in high school for about six years and I can barely see my name in French. I just there’s something in my brain. Like it just, you tell me even a phrase in another language and I just cannot remember. It just, it goes in and goes out. So I’m just making excuses why I can’t speak Vietnamese.

[00:05:54] So I just want to make sure that you’re generally good at languages. So that’s why you land Vietnamese

[00:06:00] Phúc Mập: buddy of mine. You might’ve heard of him. His name’s Chris Lewis. He’s gender YouTuber.

[00:06:06] Niall Mackay: Oh, you know? Oh, sorry. I’m thinking of someone else. I’m thinking of another Chris. Sorry. So it’s also living

[00:06:11] Phúc Mập: in Vietnamese.

[00:06:12] Yeah. This guy is insane. He’s a ginger YouTuber up in Hanoi and he learned Vietnamese and speaks it better than I do. And just two years, but he also speaks fluent Chinese and he’s taught himself Urdu from Pakistan and yeah, he he’s a master of languages. So one thing I mentioned in my videos, a couple of videos back, I talked about it where it doesn’t matter when it comes to let’s say fame or language level or money.

[00:06:42] There’s always levels to every. Every subject, I guess you could say every topic, so you need to kind of stay humble. So people will say, wow, you know, your Vietnamese is great. Say thank you. You know, it’s okay. But for example, the show I was on with Mika, we have people that have been there, been in Vietnam for 10 years and their Vietnamese was incredible.

[00:07:06] So I don’t want to get too cocky, too arrogant because I look at them, I go, I have a ways to go, you know? So there’s always levels to it. There’s always someone that’s going to be better than you at whatever the topic is.

[00:07:20] Niall Mackay: And I, I know who you’re talking about. Chris Lewis, I saw, I watched this video, not that long ago, he’s the one that he was at an ice cream shop.

[00:07:28] Right. And then the person said, oh, you have, COVID like in Vietnamese, like, oh, there’s foreigners with COVID and he could understand them. And they were. Wait, what did you say? And then it was like super awkward, not for him, for the woman that said it. I’ve asked that question before, as well of a Vietnamese guests, way back in the first season was like have you got any embarrassing stories of people not realizing that you speak English and then, you know, they say something, so exactly what happened to Chris, something it said in English, maybe offensive, maybe racist, maybe just horrible, not realizing that you could understand it.

[00:08:01] And the answer, I will never forget it was the best answer ever. He was like, no, that’s never happened to me, but it happened the opposite where I said something in Vietnamese to my friend and the person in front of me could understand me because their mom was Vietnamese. So he was in America. And he’s gay.

[00:08:20] And the guy in front of him was really cute. And he was seeing these friends in Vietnamese or this guy’s really cute. And like talking about how handsome this guy was, he would loop Western and then he turned around and spoke to them in Vietnamese, say like, yo, thank you very much about myself. I’ll say that’s pretty funny.

[00:08:35] I wasn’t expecting that. And so have you, have you had anything similar to Chris like that where someone said something maybe not offensive. It just said something about you in Vietnamese, not realizing that you can actually understand what they see

[00:08:48] Phúc Mập: a couple of times. So part of my language learning when it comes to Vietnamese was in the markets, a buddy of mine, the Fu bow, the tall friend I told you about him and I, we used to go in the markets and use our bargaining to practice our quick-witted Vietnamese.

[00:09:05] And people would say something and not think I understood. And then I would come back with it because maybe it’s just me. But one of the first things you learn in a language where it’s the bad words. My wife, she owned a one year old, which is like a beer club restaurant. And I would hear every bad word in Vietnamese from the customers every night.

[00:09:24] And one guy, he said something similar to like a sexual reference to me at a restaurant. You know, I was waiting on my food and I asked him, oh, who are we going to do that with? And he’s like, You know, but nothing, nothing too crazy. Christmas story was good. I shared that on my stories and it got onto Reddit and it’s blown up quite a bit.

[00:09:47] But yeah, it’s, it’s definitely happened before.

[00:09:51] Niall Mackay: Yeah. And when, when you said Chris, I was thinking, so a guy I worked with who’s also named Chris and I’ve forgotten his last name for the moment, but the similar thing, he can speak like five languages. That’s why that’s kind of why I asked that question because they’re all just some people who and what I’ve heard from other people, as well as once you’ve learned one language, it becomes easier to learn a second thought because your brain can of, I guess the signups, you start to snap in that direction.

[00:10:17] But my son, I mean, I make the joke. I barely speak English. I’m Scottish. Come on. My wife, they will correct my grammar. Like everyday I don’t use proper grammar the way I speak right now, I’ve had to relearn how to speak the English language. Cause I moved to. So when I moved to America and when I was 20, I was working in a summer camp and I walked up to this girl, we’re all hanging out chat.

[00:10:38] And then I was like, oh, Hey, how are you doing? My name is Neil. Nice to meet you. And she was like, what did you say? And I was like, oh, Hey, nice to meet you. My name is . I’ve just come from Glasgow. That’s just how we speak. And she looked at me and she’s like, I have no idea what you’re saying. And just walked away from me.

[00:10:57] And I was like, oh my God, what is going on right now? And I was so confused and like upset and a heart. And like I’m speaking English right now. And that wasn’t the only example. There was plenty more examples, but that was the one I remembered the most. So for me, I do, I did learn another language, but I learned how to speak English properly.

[00:11:15] So now I annunciate and pronounce all my words and I speak slowly and, and things like that. So that, that’s my achievement. When it comes to languages is speaking English. I feel like I didn’t get enough interactions with foreigners and by foreigners. I mean, even people from England, Australia Ireland until downtown Orlando, I worked in two different Irish bars and we had some real Irish people.

[00:11:39] Phúc Mập: And even to this day, when I went back to America almost two years ago now I took a shift in one of the Irish bars and my friend, you know, she’s talking to me and I’m just like, you know, after knowing you for years, I still don’t understand everything you’re saying, like, I have no idea. And moving over here, it gave me the opportunity to meet people from the Netherlands and Italy.

[00:12:01] And especially South Africa, I’ve never met a south African before. And to hear all these different accents, it’s just eye-opening.

[00:12:10] Niall Mackay: Yeah, no, absolutely. And they’re Scottish people, some of them like, I, I, when I was in New Zealand, I met a guy from Scotland and he’d been there for 20 years. And he sounded like he’d left yesterday and that’s kind of like, you know, some Scottish people have left and they never make the effort to change the accent.

[00:12:29] And so I was similar to you. I was kind of like he was talking and I was like, I honestly, I’m having real trouble understanding what this guy is saying. And he’s from the same place as me. So you do have taken a hit, you do have to make that effort. And then I think this is the thing with Americans as well.

[00:12:43] When I lived there, Americans painter particularly difficult to hear accents because, because America is such a big country, most people don’t have a passport. Most people don’t ever leave America. They haven’t met Scottish, Irish, Dutch, south Africans to when they hear a different accent, they find it really difficult to understand.

[00:13:04] So I found that time and time again in the states, but I think then once you start to travel and you get exposed to those different areas you start to understand them better, but I’m one of my favorites and I works in a bar in New York, actually for a short time. And I would get it in New York all the time that like if someone would just, I talked to them and they’d be like, oh my God, I love your accent.

[00:13:24] Where are you from in Ireland? And I’d be like, I, at that point I have been the island. No, but at that point I would be like, I’ve honestly never been to Ireland in my life. And then like the head would explode. Like, what are you talking about? You’re Irish.

[00:13:39] Phúc Mập: You’re from Ireland. I love

[00:13:40] Niall Mackay: island. My great, great granddaddy’s from Ireland.

[00:13:44] And I’d be like, mate, no, I’m from Scotland. It’s different. And he’d be like, oh yeah, but this is like the same, right.

[00:13:52] Phúc Mập: Well, like you mentioned before, it’s similar to that with Asian countries. When I made the choice to move to Vietnam, I didn’t even realize I was living in a little, little Saigon, a little Vietnam town in downtown Orlando.

[00:14:06] I just thought it was the Asian area. And I didn’t know the difference between Korean, Japanese, Chinese. Obviously I knew they were different countries, but back then, I couldn’t tell you the difference between them after living here and visiting a lot of those countries, I can spot the differences. I can tell you different aspects of their culture, but actually I just filmed a video yesterday for my channel, reviewing what I said on the TV show.

[00:14:31] And that was one of the things I mentioned for a developed country. America doesn’t have a lot of people that have a passport. I want to say, I think 46% of people don’t have a passport in America, so they don’t get out. They don’t see other cultures. They don’t see other countries. And. I, I lived that firsthand.

[00:14:51] I came to Southeast Asia and my mind was blown. Like, wow. I had no idea. I only knew Thailand for muy Thai. I didn’t know anything about Cambodia. You know, I found out a lot about Vietnam when I moved here. So I think that’s an American problem. Even as close as Ireland and Scotland are like, they can’t tell the difference.

[00:15:11] And I think that’s in part to not getting out and exploring the world.

[00:15:17] Niall Mackay: Oh, absolutely. And what, what fascinates me though, is the more you do explore the world you know, we, we put these labels on things. So whether it’s American or Asian or Vietnamese, or even cause we gin, but once you get there, once you live there, you realize that, you know, everyone’s different.

[00:15:33] Like even in Glasgow, there’s a slight difference between the accent between north and south. Klasko like very slate. And even I lived in Australia, you know, you can start to tell the difference between a Melbourne and a Sydney yet. And I, I, you can’t even put your finger on it then obviously in Vietnam, the north and the south is some people would say almost a different language.

[00:15:52] I think the central is even even more different. So it’s interesting that we have these labels that we place on things, but then as you, when you get there and you live, there is actually like these little micro microcosms. I dunno what you call it, but

[00:16:05] Phúc Mập: yeah, no completely agree. And especially with America, I always ask my students.

[00:16:10] I say, what, what version of English is the easiest for you to listen to? You know, is it from England or is it from America? And if it’s from America, you know, is it the Southern really slow? Is it the New York accent? Is it the Midwest? You know, they’re there in America being so big. I mean, there’s a lot of different voices, but you are correct.

[00:16:31] Like, even with Vietnam, we have Vietnamese, but Southern Vietnamese, central Vietnamese and Northern Vietnamese there’s definite differences.

[00:16:41] Niall Mackay: So how was your, can you. In central. I think central is the most different, right? Like I talked about this before, my friend who’s Saigon EAs. We went to Nang this year, earlier this year when travel was still available.

[00:16:54] And she could not communicate with a server. It was so funny watching her get frustrated, trying to talk to another Vietnamese person and all those, some food. And she’s like, I don’t know what she’s saying. And I think south is, is different again. So how about you in those dilate?

[00:17:08] Phúc Mập: I’m in a unique position.

[00:17:10] My wife’s family they’re originally from the north. Her hometown is high foam, which is in the north, but she was born in Saigon and I get to hear some Northern accents from her parents and, you know, the older people in her family. And then she speaks with the Southern accent, but we live on fam and high street.

[00:17:31] And the feminine high is known for a lot of northerners. And being in Saigon, Saigon is similar to the New York city of Vietnam, where you get so many different people coming here from all over the country. So I’ve been blessed to take in all these different voices. And personally, I think my Northern understanding is okay.

[00:17:52] I’ve been to Hanoi like four times and I do. Okay. And I try to even switch my voice central. I’ve never had a huge problem until. I did a listening test with the YouTube channel, having some bay and Mika and Nam, they participated in as well. And we listened to some NA and accents and it was like, nobody knew what they were saying.

[00:18:17] What

[00:18:17] Niall Mackay: is a knee? An accent

[00:18:20] Phúc Mập: is a province in Vietnam and they have a very particular way of speaking. Chris Lewis actually does a video on it where he went and tried to learn the dialect. He went and visited that area, but listening to it. I can’t make out any words. And it was a bunch of foreigners and we were taking like a Vietnamese test and a zoom call, and none of us could pick it up from Northern to Southern.

[00:18:45] Nobody knew what I was saying. So it gets even more distinct after that.

[00:18:50] Niall Mackay: And how about the Vietnamese people as well? Listening to,

[00:18:54] Phúc Mập: I showed my students, I played the YouTube video for my class and they said, teacher, we have no idea. Like, it’s

[00:19:03] Niall Mackay: horrible. So tell me then how did you start getting into YouTube?

[00:19:06] So your YouTube channel? I think I checked it is nearly 400,000 subscribers, which is awesome. Congratulations. You’re on TV with Mika choo and then, and others on every Friday night. Right. As well. And that’s, that’s just incredible. I think that the Vietnamese people. They are obviously so impressed when a foreigner can speak Vietnamese.

[00:19:28] And my other excuse. I meant to say earlier from not speaking Vietnamese, my Vietnamese has gotten worse in the longer I’ve been here and it was never good. It was never good. I could be, I could say a few things. I could do numbers and I could, you know, that was basically I can do numbers, right. So I can go to the market and I could, you know, understand, but the longer I’ve been here and I talked to them before, I’ve noticed, especially obviously in Saigon, the level of English by Vietnamese people has increased so much that.

[00:19:56] And obviously I used to live in a more local area. So I would come across local people more often. And then you’d be forced. The speaker, as I’ve talked about on the podcast before I lived in 72, which is the wonky ex-pat area. I’m one of those people now, unfortunately. So I don’t come across very many local Vietnamese people.

[00:20:14] And the ones that I do can mostly all speak English. My necessities to speak. Even the most basic Vietnamese has gone, which does make me a little bit sad. Like I can’t change those circumstances. And I, again, I’ve talked about this before. I see I live in the Winky expat area. Most people that live here are Vietnamese or Japanese or Korean or other, like, it’s not like I’m some, like it’s all Western white people enclave.

[00:20:40] Like, that’s why I don’t like that stereotype that is this like white guy, Western enclave, because it’s absolutely not. It’s really multicultural. And there’s a lot of Vietnamese people who also want to like live in a nice area as well. You know what I mean? It’s not just for foreigners. But that, that makes me a little bit sad though, that no, where I live, I’m not as exposed to, like you said, you’re in the 10 bin.

[00:21:03] Right. And that’s like a, quite a local area. So I do miss those experiences. I used to travel more, but we all, we all used to travel more, but I used to traverse the city more, which I don’t do as much. I miss seeing more of a Saigon, but that’s what it is. But I told you before we started, sometimes I will ask a question and then I was somehow ask five questions.

[00:21:25] And the one question, I don’t even know if I asked any other question that I just went on a random tangent, but to go back to my original question, YouTube channel, how did that start? How did you get into that? As I mentioned before, I get about 10, 20 views on my videos that I started putting. But you do have to start somewhere your videos now.

[00:21:42] What’s the biggest, the most highest rated video that you’ve. I challenged a Muay Thai champion here in Vietnam to arm wrestling. And that video is about 4.6 million. I think

[00:21:54] that must blow your main 4.6. I told you the beginning, I got excited at 20,000 people in two years have listened to this podcast for that’s.

[00:22:03] The population of Scotland has listened. One of you has watched one of your YouTube videos. There’s that? Not just how do you cope with that, that things steam.

[00:22:12] Phúc Mập: So it is an interesting story. And I had to explain this to my wife this idea of being famous. Like I go back to this all the time. Like I tried to stay humble and know that, you know, I’m just here and there’s other people that are getting that every day on their channels.

[00:22:29] So there’s always room to grow. But in Orlando I had a YouTube channel as well, where I would record street fights and drunk people. But every night there were fights on the street. Fights everything. I just shared a story. Somebody recorded a bum fight in front of the bar that I worked at just yesterday.

[00:22:52] And three homeless people are fighting and a homeless guy comes up on a wheelchair with one leg, gets up and starts fighting with them with one leg. No joke just had it on my Instagram. So needless to say, downtown Orlando was full of content. And my job was, you know, like I said, I could drink at work.

[00:23:11] I can run out of the bar and film a fight and then run back in on my shift, like no big deal. So my channel back there it, it got over 1 million views total because of some viral five videos. And I also had an ongoing. Trend let’s let’s say that. So we had what was called dirty feet or drunk girls.

[00:23:33] I would take off their high heels and walk barefoot. So I would go up and interview him. Yeah, it was, it was horrible. Like, I mean, they just black bottoms of their feet walking around where people throw up there’s broken glass and all this. So, you know, me being the very we say lay in Vietnamese, but where I don’t mind poking a people, I would come up and film them and interview them and say, do you ever wash your feet?

[00:23:59] I see you have quite dirty feet here. And some girls would punch me or their boyfriends would chase us like it. But it became a hot trend where people would send me pictures of dirty feet. Like I found them for you. And we made a music video with it and I sold tee shirts. If she’s got dirty feet, she’s got a dirty blank.

[00:24:18] And then people would fill in the blank, you know? So this idea of people know. My content wasn’t new. Like, I didn’t make a lot of money from that. I wasn’t the most famous person in Orlando, but like I said, people knew who the guy with the ginger beard was. Cause I’m the one that followed around dirty foot girls.

[00:24:39] So after getting chased away from a couple of street fights, I would be recording a four on four street fight and someone’s like, oh, get that. And then I would get chased by the group. I kind of gave it up. I said, you know, it’s kinda dangerous. I’m not even making money. I’m going to get sued. I’m going to get beat up.

[00:24:57] Not a good idea. So I kind of gave it up leading up until now around 2008. I went on a trip to Korea to see my friend football, the tall guy, Eric, and he, at this point he lived in Korea and he said, look, man, you’ve been in Vietnam long enough. You speak Vietnamese. Now I watch all these travel blogs.

[00:25:21] And these guys aren’t even interesting. They’re just in interesting places. They just walk around record and talk in India or China or wherever. He said, if you did it with your unique personality, you could blow up. And I said, you know what? You’re probably right. He actually gave me his Mac book. He gave it to me as a gift to edit videos.

[00:25:45] Cause I didn’t have a fast computer at the time. Actually.

[00:25:52] I still have that Mac book here and I did the first six to eight months and I came back and I said, you know, I’m going to make. I’m going to make videos and I’m going to make it where no other foreigner Vietnam has done something like this. I’m just going to go all out.

[00:26:13] Niall Mackay: Is that a Mac book? 2010?

[00:26:16] Phúc Mập: It’s pretty old.

[00:26:18] I know it’s at least eight years old.

[00:26:20] Niall Mackay: That’s the computer I still have. And I still use my Mac book is now 10 years old. I’ve had an upgraded so many times. It’s a new Ram new hard drive, new keyboard there, Luke, I think it’s the same one. This poly probably what stops me doing YouTube videos and things like this.

[00:26:36] It’s so my computer is too old. I’m almost like thinking about like setting up a golf meet to see if people want to like help me buy a new computer so I can do more videos. Cause it’s a, it’s pretty old, but I’m also still attached to it because. I’ve had it. I’ve had it the exact same length of my relationship with my wife.

[00:26:54] We bought, I bought it when I first met her. So this computer is as old as my relationship with my wife. I’ve had an upgraded so many times it’s been with me through every country. It’s call me the podcast. It still works. It’s, it’s pretty decent. So I don’t think I know the point where like, I don’t know if I can ever give up, like, I’m going to have it for like 10 more years just because

[00:27:17] Phúc Mập: it still works.

[00:27:18] I will use it occasionally. But I really enjoyed using final cut pro as for some editing with that, I liked the ease of it. And even on an older computer, a slower computer, it would still get the job done for the first few months. And when I came back to Vietnam from that Korea trip, I started filming and I, you know, I have an yeah, for my wedding.

[00:27:39] I said, I’m going to go out, go to the market and my hourly guy. And at that point in time, I didn’t feel like my Vietnamese was that good. I’d been studying for a while. You know, I can communicate with my wife and their family and they are gracious with my mistakes. You know, they know what I’m trying to say, but in general past the beginning conversation, I didn’t think my Vietnamese was that good.

[00:28:04] Well, again, a lot of my story revolves around this guy, bow my, my tall friend, Eric, he came back to Vietnam to visit for a while and. We were at a trivia night, where was this? I want to say it was game on when that bar was still around. It was a trivia night and you know, we’re like, okay, what can we do next?

[00:28:27] What is the next video for your channel that we can make blow up? And he’s like, dude, what if you get a pet chicken and put it on a leash and walk around with it? I said, dude, that’s great. And act like, I don’t know that it’s not a real pet. What if I accidentally buy women’s pajamas thinking they’re for men and just wear them to try to be part of the culture, like traditional clothes, like, dude, this is great.

[00:28:54] So within like two days, we went to the market by my house, Jeff, I’m going to high, which unfortunately for my wife, you know, she grew up in that market. New husband is buying women’s pajamas and the chicken and walking it through the market. And we just went out. There was no real script in mind. I just interacted with people on this.

[00:29:16] And it was actually, it was going to be a tour guide, video, me and the chicken, give it to her Saigon, but it turned into just people asking me what I’m doing. And me replying and Vietnamese, and luckily somewhat celebrity, motor reviewer here, his friend was holding a pigeon by the cathedral bird, the main cathedral and the, one of the jokes with it was that I bought a hin, a female chicken, but I was convinced it was a fighting chicken.

[00:29:47] And I, you know, I argued with Vietnamese and they’re fighting chickens saying my chicken would kill theirs and all this. And they’re like, it’s a N that’s not a fighting chicken. And I just acted like, I didn’t know what I saw a guy holding a pigeon. And I said, you better watch out because my chicken I’ll beat your pigeon up in Vietnam.

[00:30:05] This guy took a picture of me, which this picture got shared by his celebrity friend, which before I even finished that day got shared by all of these major Facebook pages. My wife messaged me. She said, don’t come home. All my friends are messaging me about you and those pajamas. And we were eating lunch at Lafayette esta Scott.

[00:30:29] He actually let us leave the chicken outside and brought it some rice to eat. And we weren’t even finished. And I get a message and start getting tagged in comments, thousands of links just like that. And I hadn’t even made the video yet. I hadn’t even done the interview part. And I told my buddy, I said, well, I’ve got to make this good cause it’s viral.

[00:30:48] And next thing you know, on the news, like the next day they’re sitting there, the five o’clock news and they said, Brenda, Hurley, LA beach. And during this foreigners walking on the street with a chicken and they thought I got tricked into buying the women’s pajamas. And you know, within one week it just blew up

[00:31:08] Niall Mackay: or no, that is

[00:31:11] Phúc Mập: amazing.

[00:31:13] A lot of people thought I was like mentally handicapped or just some idiot. And I’m not arguing with that. But until the video came out and you watch the full story of the video, the whole video had no meaning behind it. The foreigner wants to be Vietnamese. So he buys traditional clothes, but he doesn’t know they’re women’s clothes.

[00:31:34] He wants a pet, but he heard dogs get stolen. So he buys a chicken. He wants a fighting chicken to challenge the guys on the street, but he gets ahead. And then at the end of the story, my wife’s sister cooks the chicken and eats it. So just like I feared with a dog, my pet got stolen and eaten and that’s how it goes.

[00:31:55] Niall Mackay: And that

[00:31:55] Phúc Mập: was your first ever video. The first ever viral video, I only had like 10,000 views at that point on my channel. I had four months, four months having the channel, that video came out around April 1st, 2019. And then I went to 50,000 subscribers and like one month, like it blew up. Wow.

[00:32:17] Niall Mackay: That’s awesome.

[00:32:19] I love it. I’ll always love these stories. How things start, right? Like it’s, it’s, it’s I hate that wonky term, but it’s like organic, right? Like it’s not like some corporation behind it. It’s not like it’s just you do something it’s cool. People like it. And then it becomes big. You, I wanted to ask you a question.

[00:32:36] You said about being famous, like, so do you, I know you probably hate this question. Maybe. Do you consider yourself famous

[00:32:44] Phúc Mập: again? It depends. What level you talk about? After being a person that is recognized a lot, again, part of it is just the beer, you know, as a bartender, people go S the dirty foot guy with the ginger beard.

[00:32:57] Like I had that for five years coming here, people staring at me and coming up and trying to touch my beard. And then now they can put a name with it. They go, oh, it’s mom. Oh, you’re the guy with the chicken. I mean, ever since that video, there has not been one city that I’ve visited in Vietnam where someone didn’t come up and recognize me by name and ask me where my chicken was.

[00:33:24] I mean, Hanoi, one guy pulled over next to me and my wife. I was filming and we got the video of him getting a picture with me in the lot I went to do an MC job. And as soon as I walk into my hotel, this little kid sitting next door and he goes, welcome to the lock. I was like, good, good to see you, man.

[00:33:46] And then we were in cam ran on the beach, away from your Chang away from the main city and a kid came up and he just walks out of nowhere and goes, Hey football, where’s your chicken. Like every single city, someone is recognized. So even though a lot of people may not follow me, may not be a fan. You know, I would like to say that most people recognize me at this point

[00:34:12] Niall Mackay: and what’s been at, so what’s been the most awkward encounter you’ve had regarding that kind of situation.

[00:34:20] Phúc Mập: That’s a good question. Recently took my wife to a steak house for her birthday. And I think it’s called B3 steakhouse. It’s on win-win street and we’re sitting down and, you know, romantic, nice birthday gift and a guy walks up and he goes, oh, food mom. What’s up, man. Hey. And he’s like having this conversation with me where it’s just me and my wife and it’s a nice restaurant.

[00:34:44] It’s not like a busy restaurant or anything. And yeah, in terms of awkward, I think that’s probably the most awkward thing. I generally play things off very well. And I, I come off as friendly, you know, I’m always smiling. I’m always talking to people. So in terms of bad you know, awkward, strange in terms of things like that.

[00:35:07] I can’t really think of anything. It’s always been positive and I’m sure some of these people, they just recognize me. They want to say hi, Truthfully, they probably don’t care. They probably don’t watch my videos regularly. They just recognize me as the guy with the chicken. They’re like, oh, where’s your chicken?

[00:35:25] You know, I was on the high one pass and my, the start of my video from there, we’re at this famous rest stop. And then Vietnamese, they’re like, where’s your chicken, this whole group. My sister ate it. Like, you know, and it’s, again, they’re not, they’re probably not fans, but they recognize you. And

[00:35:45] that’s

[00:35:45] Niall Mackay: good enough.

[00:35:46] That’s also, I mean, yeah, with that big ginger build that you’re you stand out. Right. I got one of those. I got like a real forgettable face. Like I, those people, I think I definitely in my lifetime that have made me several times and I still think they don’t know who I am or they don’t like, and I got just one of those faces, but I was, I was talking to it was, my cousin is a while ago.

[00:36:07] Obviously been doing the podcast for awhile. I do comedy. And I said to a man, you know how like in America, in Scotland or in the UK, you know, you have like, I’m in a stadium, the steals, like I’ll normally like a, B, C, D E F G. Right. And then I know in some stadiums in the UK, if you get past how many layers are in the alphabet,

[00:36:27] Phúc Mập: 24, 26, 26 might be different in Scotland.

[00:36:31] I don’t know.

[00:36:33] Niall Mackay: Once you get past 26 stills, then they go a, B, B, C, C, D, D. You know, I don’t. And I said to my cousin, I says you know, these two people are like a Zed list celebrity, and it’s kind of like a slur, you know, like it means you’re like a nobody celebrity. I was like, I’m a Zed, Zed celebrity inside

[00:36:53] Phúc Mập: the next, next level of it,

[00:36:56] Niall Mackay: which I’m not that I’ve actually given myself a compliment.

[00:36:59] I’m not even as ed said celebrity at all. One time, I got recognized. I got so thrown off, we were in a Christmas market and this we’re buying like cookies this little Christmas though. And the girl was like, oh, you’re new. And I was so shell-shocked and my wife had to like, nudge me and be like, say hello.

[00:37:17] I was like, yeah. So that was that. That’s my only, my only experience of, of.

[00:37:24] Phúc Mập: Again, like people ask a question like that and you know, they’re like, oh, well, what’s it like to be recognized everywhere? And again, to me, it’s great. I love meeting people that actually want to meet me. Like when people ask for pictures, I’m very honored, you know?

[00:37:39] But in the end, if it was gone tomorrow, it’s not like my life would just drop off. You know, I would keep living and keep enjoying my life. It’s just an added bonus. It’s icing on the cake because it’s not like I earned money from each one of those people that I’m not, I’m not any more rich because of that.

[00:37:58] It’s just, it’s cool. But in the end, it couldn’t turn out bad. I’ll share an experience with you off the podcast. But I recently something happened with that where it wasn’t as good.

[00:38:11] Niall Mackay: Well, I don’t know if this question is what you are going to, what the story you’re going to say, but has it, has it comes to the point where people then assume that you’re wealthy and you’re rich and you’re this and you’re that because you’re recognizable and you’re on YouTube.

[00:38:23] And, and then has that led to any, I don’t know if that’s the story you’re going to tell me, but that was a question I was going to ask. Has that led to any kind of incoming

[00:38:31] Phúc Mập: that wasn’t the story, but this last year I’ve gotten a lot of messages from people that I don’t know, asking me for money.

[00:38:39] That’s, that’s a big one. People message me and ask me for money. And to me that’s really weird. Like imagine messaging a YouTube. I don’t like to use the word famous, but a well-known YouTube creator and, you know, Scotland or America and say, Hey man, I’m in hard times. Can you give me $50?

[00:38:59] People message me. Just ask me for money. You know what I’m saying? No, no, no, here, here, just get messages on my fan page. And like, you never know who to trust. You know, I tried to do some charity work and some charity videos here and there, but you know, I’m not just going to send money to people. That message me and ask me for money.

[00:39:19] You know, we have a big enough family as it is. And you know, right now, for example, this morning, we just brought a huge box of food to my uncles who are not, or weren’t able to get out and get food before the lockdown and, you know, try to help where I can, they need food, their family, you know, we’ll go help them.

[00:39:37] But you know, people, random people messaging me. I can, I do.

[00:39:41] Niall Mackay: That’s super awkward. Yeah. I’d never, wouldn’t have thought of that. And, you know, yeah. Obviously I’m sure you feel it all well, you want to help people, right. We all want to help people, but it’s going to give some random dude $50, but yeah, that’s an interesting one.

[00:39:56] Yeah, probably don’t do that.

[00:39:58] Phúc Mập: I just filmed a what’s in my camera bag video yesterday. And I, I make sure to note in there, like, you know, people think that I have a lot of money because of the success on YouTube, but what you don’t realize is that the ad sense in Vietnam is seven times lower than that of America.

[00:40:19] Okay. So for example, even around Christmas, the ad costs go up. So we make more money as creators. But if I remember correctly around Christmas 1000 ad views in America earned the creator $10, whereas in Vietnam, it earned creators $1. And currently I’m making about 70 cents per 1000 ad views, just because someone watches the video doesn’t mean they saw an ad.

[00:40:48] So, you know, it’s a good side income, but it’s definitely not enough to make it. My only job.

[00:40:55] Niall Mackay: It’s crazy because I think a lot of people have, I know, as a teacher as well, when I first came here and I wasn’t, I am still not a big YouTube. I watch more YouTube now after meeting like Nam and Nika and know yourself, and now I’m starting to like, appreciate it as a medium before for me.

[00:41:15] Cause I’m obviously on age, YouTube was just someone uploading a video of themselves talking or, you know, I didn’t realize it was a. So well done. Like I was going to mention this earlier, like the production values of your videos that are incredible, you know, and that these are the kinds of things that for my age, growing up, you would expect good.

[00:41:32] Come from a TV channel with a team of producers and technology is what’s changed that, right? I mean, I can produce content that I’m just like, how can I make this? And five minutes, like 10, 20 years ago, this would have probably taken a team of like 10 people with a studio and. And I mean, even this podcast that we’re doing, right.

[00:41:53] And once I’ve finished with this, I’m going to put it out to the world and I’m going to put it on YouTube and it’s going to be seen by five people, but still I can do that. Right. So it’s cool. When I first came here and then asking students, what do you want to do for a job? And a lot of them would say, I want to be a YouTuber.

[00:42:08] And at that point, I didn’t know what that was. I was like, what do you mean you want to be at YouTube? Like I like, to me again, YouTube was just somebody filming themselves, telling them people haven’t had a hard day or sharing a funny video or, you know, like a few blogs was my favorite thing. Always watching things like that.

[00:42:23] So I was like, what do they mean? They want to be a YouTuber who’s Pewdie pie and what they talked about, pretty pretty pie. I don’t even know who this guy is. And it’s only really honestly been in the last kind of year or two that then I’ve been like, oh, YouTube is like a whole other, it’s grown and developed into this whole other medium that people can create content, but it’s not like.

[00:42:43] Filming themselves doing a video. Yeah. You can still do that. And it will get like five views like this YouTube video, but there are people like yourself who are, can do cool things make co-productions make it high quality. And like, so the best of a food review show is a good example of that. They’re up to like 6 million views now.

[00:43:03] Sonny and Liz, we’ve been talking to them. Liz is a channel manager and Sonny’s obviously the producer. We talked about getting them on the podcast, but now they’ve had to leave, obviously because of COVID and things like that. But sooner watching these YouTube videos and I came across, I’m a big football fan soccer fan.

[00:43:18] I came up, came across one juror in the euros is called Chris M I think, I don’t know if you’ve heard of him, but anyway, I was Googling him. And then it obviously always comes up on Google. What’s Chris M’s net worth, which I wasn’t interested in. They came up. I was like, oh yeah, let’s play. And he’s worth new Orleans.

[00:43:34] He’s only like 25 and he’s was like new Orleans. So how do people like him then? From the level of the Euro, obviously getting free stuff, which is awesome. I assume making a little bit of money from the ads to then making new ones. Is it just his level of viewership? That’s mental?

[00:43:51] Phúc Mập: I would say a lot of it depends on the audience.

[00:43:54] Sponsorships play in that as well, and then merchandise and memberships. And what I’ve learned is that you need to broaden your streams of income. You need to make it where you have this and this and this pain, where a lot of guys I followed, they sell Lutz, they sell title packs, transition packs, things geared towards their audience.

[00:44:16] For me, if I was ever going to do that, it would be. English lessons, you know, have a patriotic English lessons or something like that. But speaking on that, I changed my picture because of this guy here, this is Kira on TV and you know, as many subscribers as I have here in Vietnam, a lot of my students are like, oh yeah, cool football, you know, Cairo on TV.

[00:44:40] And to them, they love watching video game streamers. And this kid is 17 years old, maybe 18. Now he actually hit me up and Cari and, and walked bros and invited us to be on his channel. And he’s built this just him and his team. They’re called the hero team. They built this empire. You could call it, they have a whole house with a studio and the kids, a Vietnam.

[00:45:09] Are in love with this hero team. This guy came to my house. We filmed this video at my house and my nephews eight. He goes, oh, it’s Kyron, Kyron. What are you doing here in my house? He just freaked out because that’s his idol to me. I’d never heard of him. I didn’t even know who he was. Yeah. Different people are into different things.

[00:45:31] And as famous, or as many people know about my channel, the younger generation of Vietnam, and they know all about this guy, there’s always levels

[00:45:42] Niall Mackay: to it. That’s, what’s fascinated me as well is you’re, you’re about the same age as me. You grew up, you probably grew up. I grew up with three channels and we had four.

[00:45:51] Then we had five. Then we had cable, you know, so you’re used to that. And then now we live in this YouTube world and there’s just so much out there that if that’s not for you, like this guy, Tyrone and video game, I’ve never had them. I’ve never seen him. Why would I, I don’t video game. I’m not reading. But he’s got on massive following.

[00:46:10] So like the soccer guy, Chris was in new ENL, never heard of them until like yesterday. So these people, what I find really interesting is the, not in the traditional sense, like Amos, because they’re maybe not, well-known like, not everyone knows who they are, like a Brad Pitt or something like this, but they are supremely famous within their niche.

[00:46:34] Right. And then they carve a career. So that, that to me is just a whole new world. And I think it’s really cool. I’ve just I’ve just started doing some work for a company called autonomous who make like ergonomic chairs. And I do some voiceover works and I mean, I make a podcast for them. And that opened up me to a whole new world of desk set up.

[00:46:52] So I don’t know. Have you heard of this? This is a whole thing on Instagram and on YouTube people, post pictures of their desk set ups, they have lights, they have different monitors keyboards. So now I have to reset, like, what’s the monitor? What’s the keyboard? What speakers are they using? What is this nano leaf panel of lights here?

[00:47:12] Some people have minimalist setup, some people. So I have to like, they send me these pictures. I’d never known about this until two months ago that this existed, but some people, and it makes sense. Cause they’re either coders or they’re gaming. They spend all the time at a computer at a desk. So it has to be comfortable.

[00:47:27] It has to be nice. It has to be what they want. And so that opened up like a whole new world. And I sent it to one of my friends that they’ve engraved comedian. And he’s a coder as well. And I said, I was like, I’m doing this thing. And he’s like, yeah, that’s yeah, I’ve pushed it on these pages. That’s what they do.

[00:47:44] And some of these guys similar to what you’re saying, they have millions of followers, they just get sent free stuff. They like review it, they show it. And so Dana, I don’t have a point to that, but it’s just fascinating that there’s all these little sub niches of what sub world’s going on, I guess.

[00:47:59] And I’m sure there’s many more millions more that I don’t know about.

[00:48:03] Phúc Mập: So I started my channel with a point and shoot camera, the Canon mark two, which at the time it did the job, you know, it got me millions of views. It, it definitely brought in the growth that I was looking for. But as I upgraded and improved and started watching these channels, even with the desk, How many accessories you can actually get for filmmaking.

[00:48:29] They’re like, oh, you have this $3,500 Sony, a seven S three. Do you have an $800 monitor to go with it? How about your $500 microphone? Oh, the memory cards for this are $500. How about it? It just goes on and on. And the same thing with the desk. When I move out of this house, I’m probably going to get a standing desk that can go up and down.

[00:48:54] Cause I learned about it on these computers. Just watch the review of a $14,000 iMac. Well, I bought my laptop for $1,000. I don’t know if I need to get to that level just yet, but it shows you how far or how deep you can get into whatever niche that you are

[00:49:15] Niall Mackay: in. Yeah. And the blue is my mind. Cause I w two years of podcasting starting to put stuff on YouTube, I still use my ten-year old Mac book.

[00:49:23] I have almost zero equipment. These are my wife’s headphones. I I’m, the I’m just Scottish. I’m really cheap. I don’t like spending money. So if anyone wants to give me some free stuff, that would be my dream. Like, yeah, that that’s, that’s better than money to me. Awesome.

[00:49:40] Phúc Mập: Closed mouths. Don’t get fed.

[00:49:42] You can ask and may not reply, but somebody. Somebody will send you something

[00:49:48] Niall Mackay: awfully. All right. If you’re listening and you want to send me something, even some food would be good right now in lockdown we can, so food would be awesome. So let’s let’s move on to the final questions that I asked everyone at the end of every episode, I changed them every season.

[00:50:03] So we have a whole new set of questions for this season. This question is very specific to the situation that we’re in right now. Okay. We’re in lockdown. We can’t even walk out of the apartment. Nevermind. Get on our baker or scooter or on the back of a grab. If you could get on a bake rate now, where would you

[00:50:21] Phúc Mập: go personally?

[00:50:24] I think I would head to the beach. I haven’t been devoted bow in about five years. I was one of the first vacations, my wife and I took when we were dating. And I think I would just drive up the coast. I’ve driven to Delott, I’ve driven to Nam Cathy, and I’ve driven to those areas a few times, but the beach, the coastline, I have not explored as much in the last five years.

[00:50:48] So I think I would go straight up to the beach each.

[00:50:51] Niall Mackay: Yeah, I think at this point I would probably want to do the same, but I was saying to a previous guest as well, it was so enclosed and where we are right now. I mean, I literally would be happy to jump on my bike and go to D four. You know what I mean?

[00:51:02] Like that would be so far right now. It’d be nice to, nice to get out. So staying on the lockdown theme, what has been the best thing about this lockdown for you?

[00:51:13] Phúc Mập: I think discovering more about my relation. With my wife, you know, we heard in the beginning even last year when the lockdown started that divorce rates were up, suicide rates were up, drug addictions were up domestic violence was up.

[00:51:28] And my wife and I we’ve been together about three and a half years and being stuck in the house together made me realize that’s why I married her because we can get along in complete silence. My wife likes to play video games, so we play call of duty on the phone a lot. We can watch the same movies and TV shows and yeah, building this relationship has been great.

[00:51:53] In fact, when we got married, we lived in a very, I was, you know, as the Scottish, I was very cheap. I had a 4 million a month apartment, which by apartment, it was just a room and a bathroom and we got married and she moved in with me and it’s like half the closet for me, half the closet for her kitchen.

[00:52:13] And once we got through. And now that we’ve been through a couple of lockdowns here, I feel like it’s strengthened our relationship. And I feel confident in saying we can spend months together without getting out of the house and be just fine. That’s awesome.

[00:52:28] Niall Mackay: Yeah. I feel very lucky. So as I mentioned, my wife and I have been together for 10 years, so we are one of these weird couples where we, we really like each other.

[00:52:38] We really like spending time with each other. And then every couple is different. I know some couples who have been together for a very long time, but they’re very independent from each other. So I’m not saying a relationship is better than other people, which is, but our relationship is we spend a lot of time together and meaning we enjoy it.

[00:52:55] So for us being stuck at home together all day is yeah, we, we just have, we have a lot of fun together. You know, it was pretty good, but I, when as I said, last, we did open make comedy last night. I said, you know, it’s unbelievable that in three months time we’ve never had an. It’s unbelievable.

[00:53:15] It’s unbelievable. Right? So obviously we, we still argue like anyone does, it’s not all, but we have a good time. So that’s good. Give a, I talk about my wife too much. She’s my biggest fan. She listens to every episode and one of her biggest criticisms is you talk about me too much cause I, I can’t help but talk about or nearly every episode, but I’ll give you the opportunity.

[00:53:34] Your wife sounds awesome. Give your wife a shell on the, on the podcast right now.

[00:53:39] Phúc Mập: I have to give my wife. For putting up with me for all the things I’ve done. I mean, even, even down to the way my humor is okay, so I’ll, I’ll share something about me, which, you know, surprised her at first in America, a lot of people like to get tattoos and say Chinese or Japanese, and it’s like honor loyalty, you know, something meaningful.

[00:54:05] I said, you know, and I’m going to do it. I need to have visited these countries. And I want to make it funny. So on my leg, I have a public home with. I don’t know, Vietnamese tattooed on my leg. So people like, wow, what does it say? They go, well, why did you get it? I don’t know, Vietnamese. And they just, they can’t understand.

[00:54:26] So then I kept the joke going, and this has been the entire time I’ve been with my wife. So every time I come back from a country, she’s like, oh man, on my arm here, I got a bamboo tattoo in Thailand. And it says something in Thai. And you say, well, what does it say? It says something in Thai. Yeah. But what, and I’ve actually had people get angry with me, but you don’t want to tell me, I just told you dude something in time and then I’m not going to show you on the podcast.

[00:54:58] But I got a tattoo on my butt in Korean, in Korea, in Korean. And it says it’s Korean. And you say, well, what does it say? I got it’s Korean. What? And then my wife has to live with me coming back from Korea, but guess what? I got another tattoo. She’s like, oh man. And then in Laos, she wouldn’t let me, I was going to do it.

[00:55:21] And now she’s like, don’t even try it. So she bought my last tattoo and then I’m officially supposed to be done getting tattoos. So again, my wife putting up with me through my humor, going to her neighborhood market that she’s been in for 33 years now and just acting a fool, being the only foreigner in this whole neighborhood and running around with a chicken and her putting up in her family, putting up with that.

[00:55:50] So shout out to my wife for being my biggest fan and putting up with me and my immature humor.

[00:55:58] Niall Mackay: That’s awesome. So on the flip side to that question, what’s been the most challenging thing about LA. Being a YouTube creator just not being able to go out and film a lot of people that watch from outside of Vietnam, they want to see the street life.

[00:56:13] Phúc Mập: They want to see the scenes of the city. And right before the lockdown, I started a new segment, similar to what we said Chris was doing. He would just walk around and film everything where I just walk around with the GoPro or the Insta 360 and talk about the area that I’m in and random people come up and talk to me.

[00:56:33] And both of those videos did very well. In fact, one of them is close to 200,000 views, I believe. And I said, great, this is a new subcategory I’m going to run with. And after I put the second one out lockdown, so as much as I want to just go and make these easy videos, it’s like a podcast with myself on the street street.

[00:56:54] I can’t do it. So I think the most challenging thing as a YouTube creator is having to film everything. And as an English teacher, having to teach online, my classes are great, but the little kids can get hard to control after two hours. So yes, having to do everything from home would be the most challenging

[00:57:15] Niall Mackay: thing.

[00:57:16] So have you thought about doing a YouTube video, just like walking about your apartment and just commentating on like, so I’m just going into the cupboard right now. So I’m just going to get a bag of chips. I’m going into the fridge. Yeah. Oh, yep. That’s about Baba. So Ababa, you can just do like a commentary on the

[00:57:32] Phúc Mập: I’ve considered it depending on how long this locked down goes.

[00:57:37] I may have to get creative. I want to do a skit where I teach myself. We’re on the student and the teacher, and it just does a split screen and, you know, just jump back and forth about Vietnamese. And I’ve just come up with these creative ideas where I have to come up with them because there’s, what else am I going to do?

[00:57:58] Give my opinion on politics. I’d rather not.

[00:58:01] Niall Mackay: Yeah, for sure. I know has had some positives. I say, I remember seeing this even kind of maybe last year at the beginning of the long term, and I think it’s throughout human history, right? When you’re put under pressure a different situation, like good things can come, right?

[00:58:15] It’s not all bad. Like the situation changes too. You know, like for me, 7 million Bates has a, I’ve had the time in the last few months to really develop it where we’re going to come out of this stronger than we were before. You know? So it’s it’s not all bad now. You’ve been here seven years. Was it six, seven years, seven years.

[00:58:33] This month, seven years. This month one Vietnam has shocked you the most.

[00:58:39] Phúc Mập: I have to say. The people the general friendliness and hospitality of the people after going to like 11, I think 11 different countries, Lebanon, a lot of different Asian countries. For example, Tokyo, a lot of people would shy away from talking to me.

[00:58:58] They would just kind of like veer off. It’s not that they were mean it’s just, they didn’t want to socialize with me, whether it’s English or whatever. Southern Laos, people were a little standoffish Thailand. They were always trying to sell me something on Cambodia. They were always trying to sell me a bracelet or something.

[00:59:17] You know, I feel like Vietnam was the most genuine experience that I’ve had in a, an Asian country. And I was shocked with how friendly the people were. And you’ll see in my future videos, if you want to go back and watch the walking videos, I can go up to just about anybody on the. Start a conversation doesn’t have to be in Vietnamese and they will genuinely want to talk to me and want to have a conversation or at least try to.

[00:59:45] And I really, it really blew my mind compared to other Asian countries.

[00:59:51] Niall Mackay: Yeah. I mean, I, I completely agree and talking about Thailand, I remember going to Thailand and it’s like the land of smiles and it’s, everyone’s so friendly and everyone’s like, again, it’s kind of, the stereotype is so friendly and nice in Thailand.

[01:00:04] I think these people that see that like just live in a resort and of course, then they see you because you’re paying top dollar. I didn’t have the best experience in Thailand. I didn’t have the worst. I didn’t, it didn’t live up to the stereotype of, oh, everyone’s super friendly. Like most people were pretty, pretty rude, but, and then I can clearly agree, like Vietnamese people, I guess it’s one of these things you see, we came here on a holiday.

[01:00:25] We came here for six weeks and you just stay in it’s sometimes I think I almost take it for granted how nice and amazing the people are here because I’ve just lived here for so long. But sometimes I remind myself. If I was in Scotland right now, and this woman was Scottish. How friendly would she be right now?

[01:00:41] Like, probably not very at all. Like, whereas here they just have that. They’re just very friendly and I I’ve just you’ve reminded me. I remember I ran out of gas when I was in D four when I lived there. So five years ago and this woman came up to us and couldn’t speak English. We couldn’t speak Vietnamese.

[01:00:59] And somehow she went to the gas station, brought us a bottle of gas, put it in the bike. And I tried to give her money. You know, it wasn’t much like it’s only a 20,000, 30,000, I don’t know, but I tried to give her money and she would not take the money. Big smile on her face. So friendly. So nice. Went on our way.

[01:01:16] Never don’t know who the woman is. You know what I mean? And that’s like deep, deep before, you know, it wasn’t easy. There’s not a touristy area. You people could think like, are some pads going to have the front of a gas and four, and this woman comes on and just gives us gas, loose little things happen all the time that remains yet.

[01:01:32] The Vietnamese people are, are really, really amazing. That’s one of the comments that gets me on my YouTube. As you start to grow, you’re going to get a range of comments, just wait, it’s coming. But one of the comments that gets me when it comes to these videos where I walk around and people genuinely want to talk to me like, oh, they’re only doing that because you’re a foreigner.

[01:01:54] Phúc Mập: They’re only doing that because they think you have money. And you know, to me, it’s just negative people leaving these comments because I’m generally a friendly guy, walk around with a smile, a wave at people, you know, try to converse with them. And these people aren’t trying to sell me anything. C a friendly person and they want to talk.

[01:02:15] And it bothers me that, you know, there’s such negative people in the world that just flood YouTube comments to say, oh, well, it’s only this, you know, another YouTube buddy of mine, you know, made some money on YouTube here. So he decided to go give like a thousand dollars back to the old vendors in Hawaiian.

[01:02:33] And I commented like, Hey, great job, bro. Glad to see it. And negative comments like, oh, you’re only doing this for publicity. And it’s like, he’s already famous. He doesn’t need, he’s just trying to give back to the community. But people there’s always negative people in the world. So

[01:02:50] Niall Mackay: yeah, I’ve had this discussion before, so I won’t go into it, but I’m worried.

[01:02:54] I don’t get many comments yet, thankfully, but it has, and everything that has been commented so far in the 7 million bikes world has always been a largely positive, but I’ve thought about just stopping reading comments. So I don’t have to read negative comments. No more, I’m not famous as I said, but no matter how thick skinned you may be like that shit is going to affect your rates, or I don’t know how you deal with that.

[01:03:21] Phúc Mập: That’s, you know, you asked about the wife before and that’s one thing is you won’t see my wife in my videos. One she’s more introverted and shy, which is a big reason. I like her. But another thing is like, I can take the comments I got. I generally about 98% are good. I get about 98% like ratio. But if someone says something bad about me or says something degrading about me, I just brush it off at this point.

[01:03:49] But anybody, you know, your wife, your loved one. And then people start trying to smear them in the comments, whether true or not, then it would really get under my skin. So for me, it’s not worth trying to put my wife in the spotlight. It may bring me more views initially, but it’s not worth it for me because I’d rather just keep those bad cop Mets.

[01:04:11] Those hate comments. Directed at

[01:04:14] Niall Mackay: me. Mm, no, that’s good. That’s good advice. So my, my final question is what pleasantly surprises you about Vietnam?

[01:04:23] Phúc Mập: I think I mixed up my answers, but I saw these questions before I had, I had that answer. I gave you, and I want to, maybe that was the pleasantly surprised. It did shock me as well.

[01:04:34] So I will use the other answer. Well, it comes to the handling of food and how unregulated it is. Okay. So before working in the bars, my only job was always in a restaurant and in America, you know, and a lot of developed countries, we have very strict food safety regulations. So, you know, we were subject to random inspections and we had to keep the food at this temperature.

[01:05:01] We had to wash our hands after you go, well, you wash your hands, I’d go to the bathroom. But after you smoke a cigarette or after you go outside, you have to. Wear gloves or hairnets. I had to wear a beard net at one restaurant. See, now it’s one of those things where I come from this environment of just food safety.

[01:05:19] My old roommate had a hotdog cart and he had to have a hand washing sink, either attached to it or readily available to sell hotdogs on the street. And he could only sell hotdogs because it was pre cooked. He couldn’t sell raw meat and cook it there, but to come here, not just Vietnam and Southeast Asia in general, and to see people making a of me, you know, at the same time, taking your money and then continue making it.

[01:05:46] And, you know, to see that really surprised me at first. And then I got used to it after awhile. In fact, the only places I feel I got food poisoning over in Southeast Asia was nicer restaurants, fancier restaurants. I can’t ever point it to a time where it was a street. But yeah. To come from food safety regulations to your organization, like for example, eggs, I think in the UK, you guys don’t refrigerate your eggs, but my whole life eggs were refrigerated.

[01:06:23] And I remember being in Thailand and seeing eggs on the back of a bike. And I said, Ooh, how long have those been out of the fridge? Are those good? Can you eat those? I was shocked. I had no idea. And then some of my UK friends said, oh, it tastes better if it’s not an afraid idea.

[01:06:42] Niall Mackay: It’s a, yeah, absolutely.

[01:06:45] Like coming here and you’re watching the food vendors, like you say, punching the money, touching the food and what blows me away. I’ve never had food poisoning here. It almost makes you think that like we’ll too soft in the Western world where we have all these regulations with food safety, food health, and you got to wear a build net.

[01:07:00] Like that’s insane. Whereas here, the guy is literally topless smoking a cigarette. Making a band me at the same time and you’re completely fine. There’s no problem at all. We come over with a Western sensibilities and you’re like, oh my God, this is shocking and disgusting, but they’ll no longer you’re here.

[01:07:20] You’re like, yeah, that’s fine.

[01:07:23] Phúc Mập: It’s almost like the change in environment changes the attitude for me, at least. I know there are some people still won’t do it, but I can remember, you know, in the first couple of months here finding a hair in my soup, like a long black hair and I take it out on. Kept eating it.

[01:07:40] And then I will find them occasionally, you know, have a rat run under the table, whatever. And over here I keep eating it. But if it happened in America, if I went back to America next week and it happened at McDonald’s, there’s a hair in my French fries. What is this? It’s almost like the environment changes your attitude because you don’t expect it

[01:08:02] Niall Mackay: there 110%.

[01:08:05] I think I’ve had this conversation with my wife. Yeah. If you, the same thing happened back home, you would lose it. But here you’re like, I mean, I, I’m not exaggerating. We barely have a meal with us. No, I hear in it. Like, that’s just the case and you’re just like, yeah, we went, when we went back to Scotland, the last time we went out for like a brunch and my wife had some eggshells in her.

[01:08:27] And the server came up and she was like, oh, how was everything? And really, oh yeah, it was good. But oh, there was just an eggshell in there, but we weren’t even complaining. It was just like she asked, how was it? And we like, oh yeah, there was some too. She was like, oh my God, I’m so sorry. We’ll come that new, new problem.

[01:08:41] And like took off the bill. And we were like, we know not, we, she took it off, but we didn’t ask her to at all. And we were like, wow. That like, again, is the difference here. A bit of eggshell, you’d be like, yeah, those eggshells that’s, that’s what happens, you know?

[01:08:56] Phúc Mập: And it goes deeper into the restaurant thing with the customer service.

[01:09:00] It’s not saying people here are rude. It’s just the way they deal with it is different quick example. We went to a pizza restaurant, which I will not name for the sake of the podcast. My wife and I, I love mushroom pizza. I get a mushroom pizza and it was a Chicago style pizza. So the toppings were kind of underneath and it, it comes out.

[01:09:21] And I noticed that people next to us had ordered before they were here before. At the restaurant before we got there, but we got our pizza before them. So we started eating and I’m like, man, these mushrooms are really thick and chewy. And then I see the lady as we’re eating, come out with the mushroom pizza, looks at us eating this pizza and she goes, oh, and doesn’t say anything, just walks back.

[01:09:45] And then the staff come out to the couple next to us, apologize, and then give them our mushroom pizza. We got their seafood pizza. And I’m like, you mean, these are, this is squid. These are mushrooms. And they’re eating our mushroom pizza. And I’m like, okay, well you guys are gonna cut the pizza. Right? Like you didn’t even apologize.

[01:10:04] No, no, no, no. We’ll give you a discount. 20,000

[01:10:10] Niall Mackay: it’s things like that. Right. We can do a whole podcast about things like that. It’s it’s so, so funny. I forgot what that’s like. Cause we haven’t been out in three months. No, but anyway, let’s leave on that. Thank you so, so much. Holy fuck. Which when you said foot map, I thought it meant it was a slow foot.

[01:10:27] I knew Matt was fat and I was like, I thought they were calling you a fat fuck, but thankfully not. I

[01:10:33] Phúc Mập: have been that don’t worry.

[01:10:36] Niall Mackay: This has been an awesome chat. It’s been so good to know more about your channel, know more about you. I definitely look forward to catching up. We’ll introduce our dogs together.

[01:10:44] We’ll have a beer and a pizza, hopefully, or a burger or something, food, something that not home cooked. Not that the home cooking is bad, but I’ll look forward to that. So I know what you mean.

[01:10:55] Phúc Mập: They save thank you for having me. I

[01:10:59] Niall Mackay: nearly forgot as well before we finished give people a shout, tell people where they can watch your channel.

[01:11:04] How can they find you? How can they follow you? And what’s coming up next for you. I nearly forgot that crucial.

[01:11:10] Phúc Mập: No worries. Well, everyone, thank you for watching the podcast. Like Neil said, my name is mark and I’m a foreigner here in Vietnam, making videos about Vietnam, Vietnamese, the culture, and the food here in general.

[01:11:24] So if you want to follow me or just check out some of my videos, if you type in full map on YouTube or tip doc or Instagram is the same username all the way across, you can find me check out my playlist for the must-watch. Some of my funniest videos. If you don’t like the humor on those videos, you’re probably not going to like the rest of my channel.

[01:11:45] So I will thank you in advance for trying, but if you do like it, make sure you subscribe and check out the rest of my content.

[01:11:52] Niall Mackay: Awesome. Thank you very much. Enjoy the rest of your day and I will see you very soon and hopefully,

[01:11:58] Phúc Mập: all right. Thank you, Neil. Stay safe and locked down, man.

Many people struggle to find English entertainment in Vietnam. Seven Million Bikes hosts the popular show A Vietnam Podcast, stand-up comedy and events. Have fun, connect with others and share experiences of Vietnam.