HK Magazine: So your thing is giving heath tips and making jokes about diseases. Have you ever been very ill? Simon Siu: I was severely ill when I was around 30. You know what I had? Tongue cancer! It normally just happens to old people who are heavy drinkers, smokers and always eat boiling hot food. But I was nothing like that. Do you know how much it sucks to have a disease that you’re not supposed to have? My tongue could have been cut off completely, but thankfully, only two-fifths had to go in the end. I couldn’t eat solid food for an entire year. HK: Are you OK now? SS: I still have problems like asthma, Hepatitis B, and other aging–related issues: hair loss, erectile dysfunction, etc. But still, I’d say this is the healthiest time of my life. It’s pretty much related to your state of mind, and what kind of lifestyle you’re following. You can still try to live a healthy life even if you have diseases. The key is to know how to live with the symptoms. I’m learning tai chi now; it helps a lot. HK: So what exactly is a “medical comedian”? Do you laugh at dying people? SS: Of course not! We just make jokes out of funny medical symptoms. Actually, I was part of the first generation of stand-up comedians in Hong Kong during the 80s. That was before I turned into a scriptwriter and publisher. So I got this chance to host a health show five years ago, and I thought, why do people pull such a long face when they’re talking about health issues? So I decided to make jokes about it. It’s not offensive at all. Mostly I just laugh at myself. Who would feel offended apart from me? HK: How does it feel to know almost all the doctors in Hong Kong? SS: It’s great! My health show is on every weekday, and I have to interview at least two doctors per show. So by now, I’ve met over 2,000 doctors. All my friends and relatives turn to me when they want to get professional medical advice. HK: What’s Hong Kong’s biggest health threat? SS: Cancer, followed by heart attacks. But I think many people ignore some so-called “minor” health problems, which can turn out to be something serious. For instance, not many people would go to a doctor for back pains or headaches. They normally tend to buy drugs from a pharmacy to alleviate the symptoms, but this might hide the real cause of the problems. HK: How can we stay fit? SS: Stay positive. It’s really important to live with a positive mindset. I’ve seen so many people who are severely ill, but most are happier than the common person.