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Tried Playing Pokémon in Japanese + The Start of Hibiki’s Journey

2020年02月16日「日」第12週

日本語の練習 第12週 Japanese Practice Week 12

Hello everyone! Kyuusei here to teach you Japanese and show what I find interesting about Japan. With that being said, let’s continue.

Progress

As expected, playing Pokémon in Japanese is bit too much for me now. Sure, it is a children’s game. However, considering this is their native language, they will know more about how the language works in a casual manner. In most textbooks, they usually only show how to talk and write in a politely and/or professional standard. Pokémon is very casual. I can follow a good chunk of dialogue, understand the gist of the some of the other dialogue in the game, and not know where to start to understand last bit of the dialogue in the game.

This was great for immersion experience and shows me that I at least have a good foundation in my basic understanding of Japanese. However, I am not at the level of playing in Japanese yet. I still plan on doing a nuzlocke challenge (in English) and make journal entries on my travels through the Alola region. Of course, I will try to write it all in Japanese at the best of my ability. Not sure if I’ll use the Japanese Pokémon names or the English ones. Still debating on that. Wouldn’t hurt to learn them.

Speaking of Pokémon, I have started to take an interest in the Japanese dub Pokémon Diamond & Pearl. Hoenn region was the last region that I can say I saw most of. So, I’ll start with this series. I think that this will also help me on my journey to learning Japanese and about one of my favorite game franchises.

                On another note, I have recently been doing SRS study tactics on vocabulary, JLPT N5 and N4 Kanji on JA Sensei. SRS stands for Spaced Repetitive System. This system is great for when you want to remember a lot of things (especially great for learning a new language). The app keeps a record of my progress on these items through quizzes. If I get something wrong, it will put that in the review from 3 days category. If I get it right practically always then I will review that word or Kanji 10 days from now. This system also comes with a in between (where I get it right just as much as I get it wrong. It’s like a  40% – 70% range of correctness.).

                Furthermore, I have started fresh from zero with the LingoDeer app. I plan on doing all the speaking lessons this time as well. I think it will help me in the long run if I get used to doing verbal Japanese instead of writing and typing everything down. Perhaps I will request a partner to assist me with speaking as well.

Grammar Notes with Examples

Note: Majority of these particles are used on more casual basis than formal ones.

Particle

This particle is used to draw attention or to show strong emotion.It is mostly used by women or people that have Kansai dialect (aka かんさいべん、関西弁) It can sometimes be extended with a small あ for more of a strong effect. This particle is like よ and sometimes it follows わ. Note: I sometimes hear this particle is used by rich girls in anime (aka おじょうさま、お嬢さま).

このテレビは高いわ。

This television is expensive.

行かないわ!

[I said] Don’t go!

勉強しますわ!

I will study, [okay]!

私たちは勉強しなければなりませんわよ!

[I’m tell you] We must study!

Particle ぞor

This is a rougher way of ending a sentence. Think of it as です but a more casual and/or authoritarian way of ending a sentence. This particle is usually used by men. Note: I usually here this frequently from One Piece’s Luffy (Luffy: 行くぞ!やろうども!).

数を引かないぜ!

[Hey] Don’t catch a cold!

あそこはあぶないぞ!あそこに行かないぞ!

[Hey] It’s dangerous over there! [I’m telling you] Don’t go over there!

Particle さ

This is the equivalent to the English word “like” (Ex: Isn’t Japanese like, hard to learn. It has like, so much to know compared to other languages.). This particle is usually used by teens. In other words, it’s a slang term. If used with あの as in あのさ、it means hey or yeah, well.

それはさ、君のせいじゃない?

Isn’t that like, your fault?

あのさ、それは聞いた!

Hey, I heard that!

Particle における・において

This particle usually used formally. It can mean a few things: in, at, and for. It can also represent intangible things such as the sky or emotions or tangible things such as the earth or a book.

科学部の会議は教室において行かなわれます。

The science meetings are held in the classroom.

生物において少女は専門家です。

She is an expert in Biology.

Note: おける is used for a non-specific time.

難しいにおける家族と友達は重要なものです。

In difficult times, family and friends are important.

僕:アンサム、人生において一番素晴らしいことはなんですか?

Me: Ansem, what is the most wonderful thing in life?

アンサム:くらやみだ!

Ansem: Darkness!

ヒビキのにっき

Welcome to Hibiki’s Journal or ヒビキのにっき. This new segment will feature Hibiki’s journey through the Alola region. This will be a Nuzlocke. This means if his Pokémon faint in battle they are considered deceased and he can only catch one different Pokémon from each different location in this region. These journal entries will be mostly in Japanese. However, I will translate them after the main Japanese text. I will only write one or two entries a week. With that being said, let’s begin Hibiki’s journey in the Alola region.

エントリ1・ENTRY 1

アローラ地方に届いた。Meowthは僕に起きてくれました。ククイ博士は僕の家に来た。ククイ博士と一緒にりりィタウンに行きました。あの時、金髪の少女を見ました。金髪の少女は怪しいかばんが持ちました。あのかばんの中で一体何ですか。橋まで少女について来た。不思議なポケモンはかばんに飛び出した!にわかに、Spearow はあのポケモンを攻撃した。あのポケモンを早く守りました。そうしたら、その強い光に目がくらんだ。

橋が崩壊した。僕と不思議なポケモンが落ちました。運良く、私たちは助かった。もう一つ不思議なポケモンが私たちが助けってくれた!金髪の少女のお名前はリーリェです。リーリェの不思議なポケモンのお名前はホシグモです。その助けているのポケモンに不思議な石をもらいました。

リーリェとホシグモと僕は町に帰りました。島のハクナを会いました。ハクナにポケモンをもらった!ニャビ(Litten)を決めた!ビヤコというあだ名でした。あとで、ハウーに出会いました。僕の初バトルを勝ちました。日永だな。疲れた。うちに帰って、寝ます。

I arrived in the Alola region. Meowth woke me up. Professor Kukui came to my house. I went to Lily Town with Professor Kukui. At that time, I saw a blonde girl. She had a suspicious bag. What the heck is in that bag? I followed her to a bridge. A mysterious Pokémon jumped out of the bag! Suddenly, Spearow attacked the Pokémon. I quickly protected the Pokémon. Then, I was dazzled by a strong light.

The bridge collapsed. The mysterious Pokémon fell with me. Luckily, another mysterious Pokémon helped us! The blonde girl’s name is Lillie. Lillie’s mysterious Pokémon is called Hoshigumo. The Pokémon that saved us gave me a strange stone.

Lillie, Hoshigumo, and I returned to the town. I met the island’s Hakuna. The Hakuna gave me a Pokemon! I chose Nyabi (Litten)! I nicknamed it Biyako. Afterwards, I met Hau. I won my first battle. Been a long day. I’m tired. I’m going home and going to sleep.

In conclusion, I hope that this series is helpful with your journey to learning Japanese and/or taking an interest in the country’s culture. Until then… また来週!

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I Listened to Japanese Audiobooks So You Don’t Have To

2020年02月09日「日」第11週

日本語の練習 第11週 Japanese Practice Week 11

Hello everyone! Kyuusei here to teach you Japanese and show what I find interesting about Japan. With that being said, let’s continue.

Audiobooks I have used to learn Japanese

Audiobooks can help you with your listening comprehension. So, when I find an interesting summary of an audiobook, I pick it up and listen to it. I usually use Genki for listening comprehension but there is other relatively good material out there as well.

For instance, Dr. Blairs Japanese in no time. It has some basic vocabulary expressions, and grammar, so it is easy to follow. However, since I am at higher level than this, the learning process only became review for me. In other words, the learning process became rather tedious. I did enjoy the story though.

It takes the listener to an amusement park where fans of a tv show has taken the park over. A police officer has chosen the listener of this book to stop this situation from going bad to worse. It is up to the listener to learn some Japanese from a pocket watch provided by the police officer. With these lessons you can get by somewhat with the dialogue provided in the audiobook.

I have a few more audiobooks I am trying out. However, there not as interactive as Dr. Blairs book. It’s just “repeat after me” phrases and vocabulary. Perhaps listening to these are not the right way for me to learn Japanese. These books may help with review. They are called VocabuLearn Japanese Level One and Learn in Your Car Japanese.

I should try out the JA Sensei audiobook. The app does have a few listening comprehension modules, but I have learned that I am not at a level to understand what is going on just yet in later modules.

Progress

I have taken a few JLPT N5 practice tests and I am doing very well. Almost perfect scores. I could do better on the listening comprehension, but I still pass those just fine as well. I am thinking about studying for the N4 instead. The only thing that is holding me back is more advanced vocabulary grammar and Kanji.

I attempted to play Pokémon Moon in Japanese. In the very beginning, I was already looking up words. So, I went to the internet and found out that at my level (where I can understand most N5 material), these games are difficult for me. While I was also searching these words on japandict.com, some of these words were N2 level (yikes!). I must be at least at N3 level to understand most of this game.

I’m doing a Nuzlocke challenge on this game, so I didn’t feel too bad about restarting a new game to test out my Japanese (I wish that these games came with multiple save files). Thankfully, they do have a kana option so I could read it just fine. It was just comprehending the words that was the problem. It is funny how these games are geared towards children, but they are so advanced compared to where I am in my Japanese.

With that in mind, I began to wonder “what is the JLPT level equivalent to a native speaker”. I would think that N5 would be at least 1st grade considering you have to know about 80 kanji from the 1st year jouyou kanji. I will look further into this as I progress. In the meantime, I will keep my games on the English captions/subtitles for now.

Grammar notes with examples

株式会社=かぶしきがいしゃ=Stock Company or incorporated company

This vocabulary word talks about a big company such as a big media company or a company like Google. The company name can go before or after this word.

Ex: 株式会社グーグル

Ex: 株式会社インフェルノブールで働きます。= I work at Inferno Blue Co.

Ex: モンスターズ株式会社へよこそう。=Welcome to Monster’s Inc.

に/へ電話をかける=To make a phone call

Ex: あした、母に電話をかけます。= I will call my mom tomorrow.

電話に出る= To answer the phone

Ex: 僕は家にいない時、電話に出ないでください。=When I am not home, do not answer the phone.

べき=should, must, or you ought to.

This grammar point refers something you or someone else should or ought to do have done.

For the most part, you must keep verbs in the dictionary form. For るand うverbs, you keep it as you see the verb. However, this is not the case with するverbs. You’ll see an example of this exception in the dialogues for this week.

Ex: 彼女たちにあやまるべきだと思います。=I think you should apologize to the girls.

Dialogues

ちゃんと準備しておけ

A: 日本語能力試験N3を合格するのために、勉強しましたか?

B: はい.僕はツとシの違いを知る必要があるだけです。

A:え?あの。。。その文字は必要じゃないですか。

B:そうです。あー、僕もあと54漢字も知る必要があります。明後日勉強します。

A:その試験は今日です。

B:え?!(◯Δ◯||)

A:本当に大丈夫ですか。

B: 時間を止まらないと。

A:え?!一体何を言っていますか。無理ですよ。あなたは勉強すべきでした。

B:ザ・ワールド❢❢

A:おい!いい加減に現実を見つめろ!

鬱陶しい天気?ノー問題ですよ。

A: 昨日の天気が悪かったですね。

B:  梅雨ですから、今日の天気も悪いです。

A: 鬱陶しい天気ですね。

B: そうですね。

A: 買い物したくせに。家で映画を見るだと思います。

B: どんな映画を見ますか。

A: 名探偵コナンのムービーマラソンを見ます。

B: わあ、見たい、見たい。

A: じゃあ、一緒に見ましょう。

B: どうですか?

A: デジタルビデオコレクションがあります。このコレクションは私のワンドライブがあります。

B: じゃあ、見ましょう。

Be Properly Prepared

A: Did you study for the JLPT N3?

B: Yes, I just need to know the difference between tsu and shi.

A: What? Um… those characters are necessary, aren’t they?

B: That’s right. I also need to know 54 more kanji. I will study the day after tomorrow.

A: That exam is today.

B: What?! O_O

A: Are you going to be all right?

A: I must stop time.

B: Huh?! What the heck are you talking about? That’s impossible. You should have studied.

A: The World!!

B: Hey! Face reality!

Gloomy weather? No problem.

A: Yesterday’s weather sure was bad, huh?

B: Because it is the rainy season, today’s weather is also bad.

A: The weather is gloomy.

B: Isn’t that so.

A: And I was going to go shopping. I think I’ll watch a movie at home.

B: What kind of movie will you watch?

A: I’ll watch a Detective Conan Movie Marathon.

B: Wow, I want to watch, I want to watch.

A: Well, let’s watch it together.

B: How?

A: I have a digital collection. I have this collection on my OneDrive.

B: Then let’s watch it together.

In conclusion, I hope that this series is helpful with your journey to learning Japanese and/or taking an interest in the country’s culture. Until then… また来週!

Learning About the JLPT

2020年02月02日「日」第10週

日本語の練習 第10週 Japanese Practice Week 10

Hello everyone! Kyuusei here to teach you Japanese and show what I find interesting about Japan. With that being said, let’s continue.

JLPT (日本語能力試験)

The Japanese Learning Proficiency Test or the JLPT is an exam that occurs every year in the USA at major locations such as Atlanta Georgia and Washington, DC to name a couple in the beginning of December. However, it is held twice a year in Japan. This exam all started in 1984. There are 5 levels in this exam system. N5 is the easiest level to obtain while the hardest to obtain is the N1. However, N3 is the level where you can work in Japan.

So, why go for the N5 or the N4? I think these are best used to show that you have interest in the Language and the culture. This shows that you are willing to learn more about the language and someday progress even further in your proficiency in Japanese.

The exams consist of reading, listening, and knowledge of the language (such as grammar and conjugation of verbs and adjectives). In the past they did have only 4 levels (N4, N3, N2, and N1). Luckily, once you do get certified you never have to renew your certification. Plus, the pass mark can be easy to get over once you study and practice hard enough.

All the tests are based on a 180/180 score. You must at most approximately 56% of the test correct for N1 and it decreases all the way down to approximately 44%. That is the overall pass score. The lowest test N5 takes about 250 – 450 hours to prepare for (if you are familiar with Kanji such as speakers of the Chinese language) or 325 – 600 hours to prepare (if you have no prior knowledge of Kanji). For the N5 approximately 45% of overseas test takers passed and were certified. For some odd reason there were about 68,000 people who applied to take it but only about 55,000 people took it.

Status Update

Since I am discussing the JLPT, I would like to set the exam as my goal for this year. I have gotten comfortable with a few practice exams for the N5. However, I think that by the time the exam is available, I think the N4 would be the right pace. Then again, it is $60 to take the exam so I might want to stick with N5 first and work my way up to the next level and the level after that and so on and so forth.

Lingo Deer and JA Sensei can help out quite a lot. Then Karl Marx’s book Fluent in Japanese in 90 Days and Japanese from Zero Series can both be of help for self-learning for the N5. I am also watching a JLPT N5 playlist from YouTube channel called TalkinJapan and LIGHT for practice test materials.

On another note, I have got a lot of work to do in my Japanese. My past dialogues need to be revised because they are most likely awkward and entirely wrong. It is best for me to set a certain pace and triple check my Japanese for now on. At first when my errors were addressed to me, my first action was to drop everything I know and start from zero once again. However, that would be unproductive. So, it best to keep moving forward and study for the N5. The N5 is my goal and if I see fit, I can change that goal to the N4 when I am confident enough in my skill.

The plan for now is to try to provide simpler dialogues. That way I can still practice, and I am not leading people down the wrong path of learning this wonderful language by giving them incorrect Japanese language knowledge.

Grammar Notes

一番=いちばん=most

この町が一番おもしろいだと思います。

I think that this city is the most interesting.

Among these = Noun + の中で

兄弟の中で姉が一番強いです。

Among my siblings my big sister is the strongest.

もっとも=most/extremely -> This is usually used for formal speech and writing

ワンピースがもっとも盛んなアニメです。

One Piece is the most popular anime.

Dialogue

サッカじゃなくて。フットボールですよ。(Polite

A: ねえ、ジョン。サッカー試合はいつですか。

B: え?サッカーではありませんよ。フットボールです。僕たちはスーパーボウルを見ています。

A: え?スーパーボウル?フットボールは何ですか。

B: 。。。

A: 。。。冗談ですよ。

B: あ、そうですか。

A: 僕はフォーティー・ナイナーズは応援しています。

B: マジですか!このスーパーボウルはチーフの勝ちですよ。

A: じゃ、見てましょうか。

B: いいですよ。チーフは負けません。

アレクスとアスコ (Polite)

A: アスコ、日本語のクラスはどうでしたか。

B: ちょっと難しかった。でも、すごく楽しかった。カズコ先生はいい先生です。

A: そうですか。試験を準備していますか。

B: はい。そうです。ねえ、アレクス。

A: はい。

B: 私のアパトで一緒に日本語を勉強しましょうか。

A: いいよ。ですが、カズコ先生より僕の方が厳しいですよ。

B: それはいいだと思います。

A: じゃ、4時半ちょうどに行きます。いいんですか。

B:  いいよ。ありがとう。

A: どういたしまして。またね。

B: また。

It’s not soccer. It’s football. (Polite)

A: Hey, John. When is the soccer match?

B: What? It’s not soccer. It’s football. We’re watching the Super Bowl.

A: What? Super Bowl? What is football?

B: …

A: … I’m kidding.

B: Oh, is that so?

A: I’m rooting for the Forty Niners.

B: Are you serious? This Super Bowl is the Chief’s victory.

A: Well, shall we see?

B: That’s fine. The Chiefs will not lose.

Alex and Asuko (Polite)

A: Hey, Asuko. How was your Japanese class?

B: It was a little difficult. But it was a lot of fun. Ms. Kazuko is a good teacher.

A: Is that so? Are you preparing for the exam?

B: Yes, that’s right. Hey, Alex.

A: Yes.

B: Shall we study Japanese together in my apartment?

A: Sure. However, I am stricter than Ms. Kazuko.

B: That’s good.

A: Well, I’ll be there at exactly 4:30. Is that all right?

B: That’s fine. Thank you.

A: You’re welcome.

In conclusion, I hope that this series is helpful with your journey to learning Japanese and/or taking an interest in the country’s culture. Until then… また来週!

Karaoke + The 3 Japanese Writing Systems + Tips to Learn Kanji

2020年01月26日「日」第9週

にほんごのれんしゅう(日本語の練習) 第9週 Japanese Practice Week 9

Hello everyone! Kyuusei here to teach you Japanese and show what I find interesting about Japan. With that being said, let’s continue.

Karaoke (カラオケ)

Karaoke is a special past time in Japan where people can unwind while also expressing themselves without any judgement. They were most prominent in bars but now people rent out rooms with the equipment set up called karaoke boxes. I recall watching an episode of “僕は友達が少ない” when everyone went to a karaoke box. One character found the pricing a bit deceptive because you must pay for each person for only one room. An entrance fee if you will. Unfortunately, that character (and a character who agreed with that person) ended up in separate rooms by themselves while the others got a room together. You must pay for the time you are using the room as well. Fortunately, this comes with a drink bar for those who are in the room. However, the price range and the drink limits can vary.

The basic layout of a karaoke room would be a TV, a few microphones, a remote control to pick the song you want to sing, coffee table, one or two sofas. There is also a phone where you can request for more time if your time has run out or you want to place an order. Don’t worry about going over time, they will let you know and ask if you want more time. Some karaoke boxes have equipment that comes with a scoring mechanism that will rank how well you did compare to other people on that specific song. Think ranking scores at an arcade.

Image result for カラオケ
A general set up of a karaoke box.

On another note, it doesn’t matter if you are bad at singing or even good. This is all done in good fun. However, if you are a good singer, it is best not to hog the mic and let others have their fair shake at a song.

Hiragana (ひらがな) Katakana (カタカナ) and Kanji (漢字)

With practice the first two can be completed within a week or two. However, Kanji is a bit more complex. I would like to provide a few ways to make it easier to not only learn how to read Kanji but write it as well.

There is an app I use to practice writing and learn Kanji called JA-sensei. It has flashcards you can learn from and when you write Kanji the app checks your stroke order on a 0-100 grade scale. It is available for Android and IOS. I am taking the Jouyou route instead of the JLPT route. The Jouyou route is where you follow the amount of Kanji Japanese schools teach each year. Considering I want to learn at least 300 Kanji this year, I should be able to learn as much Kanji as an average 3rd grader in Japan (after this grade they will have learned up to 440 Kanji). After this, I will most likely have enough Kanji under my belt to take the JLPT N3.

I would also recommend George Trombley’s book “Kanji from Zero” where it teaches you 240 Kanji in a textbook/workbook format. That will get you almost enough Kanji to take the JLPT N4 (N5 (110) + N4 (179) = 289 Kanji ).

I have joined a Japanese learning group a few months ago. I have had a few conversations there about how to learn and what to use to learn (books, apps, anime [笑] etc.). The most prominent questions are “Do I need to learn Kanji” and “How do I learn so many Kanji”. One of the moderators shared his idea on how to do so and I think it is very helpful. So, I’ll share some of that here.  Music. Yes, that is correct. If the song has Japanese use it to learn kanji. I like to do a sing a long sometimes to my favorite anime openings and endings (You’ll see a reference to one of my favorite songs in the dialogue).

So, choose and listen to about 10 Japanese music tracks and find lyrics for them (Here is one website that I use: https://www.lyrical-nonsense.com). There are some furigana extensions on browsers such as Chrome to ease you into reading the Kanji. Not only will you learn Kanji, but you can also learn grammar as well. Add more songs to your leisure and dissect away at the kanji and grammar while also practicing your speaking (singing?).

And lastly, practice making sentences as soon as possible while these Kanji are still in your head. Best of luck and I hope that this was helpful.

And now here are some grammar notes with examples.

Comparisons (くらべる(比べる)ーTo compare) – のほうが (の方が)、より

Better ➔ のほうが/の方が

英語の方が上手ですが、

I am good at English but,

Worse ➔よりも

日本語よりも上手です。

I am better at it than Japanese.

Note: の方がcan be replaced with は, but よりcannot do so.

EX:英語は上手ですが、日本語よりも上手です。

I am good at English but, I am better at it than Japanese.

To compare something or someone else – 比べる

Compared to A, B is (adjective) ➔ Aに比べてBの方が(adjective)です。

“In comparison to A, B is (adjective)”

EX: 姉に比べて、僕の方が冷たいです。

In comparison to my older sister, I am colder./I am colder than my sister.

Note: 冷たいdoes not mean temperature wise but personality wise when it is said about a person.

もっと+ (adjective) (adjective)+er

誰もより、僕はもっと強くになりたいです。

I want to be stronger than anyone.

Or you can use より+(adjective)

この酒は水より弱いだ!

This alcohol is weaker than water!

DIALOGUE

エマたち・カラオケ

パーティーのあと、エマたちはカラオケボックスにいきました。

エマ:ねえレイくん、歌いましょう。レイくんのスコアに負けていませんよ。

レイ:よしゃ。こい!レヂィーズファースト!

エマ:わあ、これはジェントルマンがあるのか。素敵な。じゃ、私の番です。

♪頭がぐるぐるしてまた

私は君に甘えてた

So Goodbye

Darling Darling Darling

ヒビキ:凄い。エマさんは歌が上手です。ハルさんー

ハル:そんなに丁寧な言葉を使わなくてもいいんですよ。ハルがいいです。

ヒビキ:じゃ、ハーハルは歌が好きですか?

ハル:実は。。。私、歌が下手なんです。

ヒビキ:ええ、僕の方が歌が下手だと思います。それに、ハルの歌を聞きたいです。

ハル:じゃ、歌います。

レイ:ヒビキとハルは二重唱をしましょうか。

ヒビキとハル:えと~。

エマ:ねね、レイくんの番ですよ。

レイ:分かった。95点?!俺は負けない。

ハルとヒビキ:二人の負けん気が強すぎる。え?(二人は一緒に笑っています。)

エマ:頑張って。

レイ:じゃ、歌がどれですか?

ハル:ヒビキーくん、ウイスキーのお替わりいる。(ウイスキーをグラスに注ぎています。)

ヒビキ:いいです。お茶と一緒に酒が好きです。

ハル:何とかウーハイですか?

エマ:LiSAがあるよ。

レイ:ナイス!

ヒビキ:はい、そうです。

ハル:はい、これをどうぞ。

ヒビキ:いただきます。わあ、これは本当においしいです。

ハル:嬉しい。私はバーテンなんです。

ヒビキ:凄い。知りませー

レイ:一人きりでも平気。と、こぼれ話落ちた強がり❢

ヒビキ:(“ヤバイ!レイの歌ことがわすれました❕オフキーをすぎる。”)

ハル:すみません。ヒビキーくんのことを聞こえません。外で行きませんか。

エマ:ゴ! レイ!

ヒビキ:はい、行きましょう。

ハル:エマ。私たちは戻ります。

エマ:いいよ。頑張ってハルーちゃん。ファイト!そして、ヒビキ。。。

ヒビキ:はい?

エマ:ハルを傷つけないでよ。なれば、ヒビキーくんをゆるすないよ。

ヒビキ:え?

ハル:エマ!!(ドアを閉めた)エマーちゃんを聞き捨てましてください。(やっぱり、エマは酔っ払うね。)

つづく?

Emma and friends: Karaoke

After the party, Emma, Rei, Haru and Hibiki arrive at the Karaoke bar.

Emma: Hey Rei, let’s sing. I won’t lose to your score.

Rei: Alright. Bring it. Ladies first!

Emma: Wow, is this a gentleman? So wonderful. Well, it’s my turn.

♪My head spins round and round again

I was dependent on you

So Goodbye

Darling Darling Darling

Hibiki: Amazing. Emma is good at singing. Ms. Har-

Haru: You don’t have to use such polite words. “Haru” is good.

Hibiki: Then, does H-haru like singing?

Haru: Actually… I’m not good at singing.

Hibiki: I think I’m a worse singer than you. Besides, I want to hear you sing.

Haru: Well, I’ll sing.

Ray: Shall Hibiki and Haru do a duet song?

Haru and Hibiki: Um-

Emma: Hey, it’s Ray’s turn.

Ray: All right. 95 points?! I won’t lose.

Haru and Hibiki: They’re too competitive… eh? (they both laugh)

Emma: Good luck, Ray.

Ray: So, which song should I pick?

Haru: Do you want another cup of whiskey, Hibiki? (pours a glass of whiskey)

Hibiki: Thank you. I like alcohol with tea.

Haru: Something like a Oolong tea highball?

Emma: They have LiSA’s new song.

Ray: Nice!

Hibiki: Yes, that’s right.

Haru: Here you go.

Hibiki: Thank you. Wow this is really good.

Haru: I’m glad. It’s because I’m a bartender.

Hibiki: Amazing. I didn’t kno-

Rei: ♪ I’ll be fine by myself. An empty assurance escapes my lips again❢ ♪

Hibiki: (“Crap! I forgot about Rei’s singing. He’s too off-key.”)

Haru: I’m sorry. I didn’t hear you. Would you like to go outside?

Emma: Go Rei!

Hibiki: Yeah let’s go.

Haru: Emma, we’ll be right back.

Emma: Okay. Good luck, Haru. Fight! And Hibiki…

Hibiki: Yes?

Emma: Don’t hurt Haru. If you do, I won’t forgive you.

Hibiki: Eh?

Haru: Emma!  (Closes door) Please ignore Emma. (As expected, she’s drunk, huh?)

To Be Continued?

In conclusion, I hope that this series is helpful with your journey to learning Japanese and/or taking an interest in the country’s culture. Until then… また来週!

My Favorite Japanese Singers

(日本語の練習) 第8週 Japanese Practice Week 8

Hello everyone! Kyuusei here to teach you Japanese and show what I find interesting about Japan. With that being said, let’s continue.

歌手 – singer

歌 – song

手 – hand

This week’s topic will be about a few of my favorite Japanese singers and a couple of songs that I would recommend.

 LiSA (Unlasting, Merry Go Round)

I was introduced to LiSA when I first watched Sword Art Online. Ever since I have been taken aback by her powerful and emotional voice. I loved her voice on the new ending song of Sword Art Online: Alicization War of the Underworld. I really should consider listening to her non-anime songs.

Hikaru Utada (Chikai, Distance [I like the remix more than the original.] )

This woman is my childhood. Has songs in English and Japanese. There is a major sense of nostalgia when I hear her voice. I think it is fair that could go for many others due to her songs being on Kingdom Hearts (Perhaps she is another reason why I wanted to learn Japanese). Last year, I started to buy and listen to more of her songs. Looking forward to branching out more into her repertoire.  

Miyuna (Boku to Kimi no La La Lullaby, Gamushara [heard this song a while ago. Just found out that it’s the fifth opening for an anime I’ve never watched, Black Clover])

A new comer to the scene. First introduced to her from the ending song on Fairy Tail’s final season. I like how clear you can hear her voice. Her voice can get rough and then smooth out on the next word. I’m looking forward to hearing more of her songs. Some of her songs have a 90s R&B feel to them (like “Guru Guru”).

Kenshi Yonezu (Lemon, Peace Sign)

Voice of a soft-spoken man. His song “Orion” was the first song I heard. Of course, that song was a ending song for my favorite anime 3-gatsu no lion. I see him pop a few times on anime. So, last year I picked up more of his songs. Must say “Lemon” is great. I would like to take that song and “Orion” and translate them personally one day.

UVERworld (ODD FUTURE, Itteki no Eikyo)

A classic group that I have heard plenty of throughout my time watching anime. Love their songs that have the sax playing like in Blue Exorcist’s first season opening called “Core Pride”. Whenever I hear it, it just sounds like that they are having tons of fun.

Mrs. GREEN APPLE (Inferno, Naniwo Naniwo)

I must thank Fire Force for leading me to this band with their first opening called “Inferno”. And boy is it indeed fire. Ever since I’ve listened to more of there songs from their older albums such as Progressive. The singer can sing in a fast and energetic way and then suddenly drop into a soft and slow pace before he picks back up. Will have to look out for more of their songs.

Fortunately, these songs can be listened to on YouTube on the artist’s respective channels and/or be bought through websites such as google play music, iTunes, or amazon. Unfortunately, not many songs are available to buy and support these and more artists as necessary. Hopefully, one day there will be a way to buy more Japanese music here in other countries.

On another note, here are some grammar notes and examples.

To become (for い-adj) い-adverb + なる-adj take out final and add+なる

僕は強くなりたいです。

風邪ひくので、からだが重くなります。

I want to become strong.

My body is heavy because I am sick.

To become (forな-adj) な-adverb + なる ➔ な-adj + replace with+なる

アパートは静かになりました。

The apartment became quiet.

Adjectival noun い-adjective + さ or for な-adjectives な-adjective +

この壁の細さは30センチ。

The width of this wall is 30 centimeters.

Most な-adjective follow the same pattern as い-adjective to make an adjectival noun

For some な-adjective な-adjective + さreplaces

Questions:

– だれ – Who

-なに – What

いつ – When

どこ – Where

なぜ/なんで– Why

どうして – a more polite way to ask why

ですか。– used at the end of sentences asking a question. Think of it as a question mark.

どんな – Which (used for one or two items)

どれ– Which (used for more than two items)

Don’t worry. There will be examples of how to use these in this week’s dialogues.

DIALOGUE

意地悪なジジイ👴 珍しい男の子 (mixed)

A young boy is walking into a quiet library and sees an old man in a chair. He approaches the old man out of curiosity of what he is hearing in that direction. Could it be the old man’s voice? But how can he hear the old man? The library is silent.

男の子:あなたは誰ですか。
お爺さん:茂です。(茂さんは本を読んでいます。)
男の子:何をしていますか。
お爺さん:(“ぼけの質問を答えています。”) 本を読んでいます。
男の子:ぼけじゃないよ!僕はあなたの心を読むことができます。

お爺さん:まさか。あなたは一体何よ?化け物か?!

男の子: 超能力があるんだよ。意地悪なジジイ。

The Mean Old Man and the Strange Boy

Boy: Who are you?

Old Man: I am Shigeru. (Shigeru is reading a book)

Boy: What are you doing?

Old Man: (“Answering a fool’s question”) I’m reading a book.

Boy: I’m not a fool! I can read your mind.

Old Man: No way! What in the world are you? A monster?!

Boy: I have ESP. You’re mean, old man.

間違った粒子 <- (間違った単語)間違った助詞←失礼。舌を噛みまみた。(mixed)

I really like the Monogatari series. Therefore, I thought it would be a good idea to make a dialogue for one of my favorite series. I present to you Hachikuji and Araragi.

八九寺:レストランを食べました!

阿良々:え?!ちょっと待って下さい。。。いま、何と言ったか。

八九寺: あ、失礼。舌を噛みました。レストランで食べました。ねね、どうだったか。

阿良々:完璧だ。

Hachikuji: I ate a restaurant!

Araragi: What?! Wait a minute… What did you say now?

Hachikuji: Oh, excuse me. I bit my tongue. I ate at a restraint. Hey, how was that?

Araragi: Perfect.

買い物をしています(polite)

A young woman goes to a store to buy more pens. She just got paid from her job. She is a bit of coin pincher, so she doesn’t want to spend so much because she has to get back home by train (her train ticket is 450 yen). However,…

A:このぺんはいくらですか。

B:1000円です。

A:(“ヤバい!私の財布はどこですか?!1000円だけポケットにあります。でも、ぺんがほしいですよ。”) じゃ、買います。

B:あ、すみません。このペンは今セールです。200円です。

A:(“よかった!”) 2本(ぼん)をください。

B:400円です。

Shopping

A:How much is this pen?

B: It is 1000 yen.

A: (“Oh crap! Where is my wallet?! I only have 1000 yen in my pocket. But I want that pen.”) Well, I’ll buy it.

B: Oh, Sorry. This pen is on sale. It is 200 yen.

A: (“Thank goodness!”) I’ll take two please.

B: It’ll be 400 yen.

100キロ?!(polite)

A man is tying his shoes at the door entrance with a fire in his eyes. What is he about to do? His girlfriend is wondering the same.

A:公園にいきます。

B:いつ行きますか。

A:あと5分に行きます。ランニング100キロをします。

B:100キロ?!なぜ?!

A: I’m going to the park.

B: When are you going?

A: I’ll go in another 5 minutes. I’m going to run 100 kilometers.

B:  100 kilometers?! Why?!

私はだめだと言わなかったのよ? (casual)

お姉ちゃん:氷柱を舐めてはだめよ。

弟:まに。すいたかうごかね。なしゃんちゃ、すけれ。

(What he is trying to say: なに?舌を動けない。お姉ちゃん、助けて。)

お姉ちゃん:はあ~ いいよ。助けてあげるよ。

Big Sister: Don’t lick the icicle.

Little Brother: Rhat? I kwan knove hy tung. Sishta hep be.

(What he’s trying to say: What? I can’t move my tongue. Sister, help me.)

Big Sister: Sigh~ okay. I’ll help you.

I hope that this series is helpful with your journey to learning Japanese and/or taking an interest in the country’s culture. Until thenまた来週!

Itsukushima: Place I’d Like to Visit + How to Get 日本語上手(笑)

にほんごのれんしゅう(日本語の練習) 第7週 Japanese Practice Week 7

Hello everyone! Kyuusei here. Let’s start with a few things about Japan.

Itsukushima ()

Itsukushima is an island in the city called Hatsukaichi in the Hiroshima Prefecture (Southwest part of Japan) This is a shrine island where many statues can be found while going up stairs that lead to the Daisho-in Temple. These statues are rakan (らかん) or disciples of Buddha. They are basically followers of Buddhism who have walked the long path of enlighten but have not reached Buddhahood yet. Visitors come to offer knit caps and scarves to keep the statues warm.

In shrines you will often find torii (とりいー鳥居) which are large red gates. If you are into hiking, the top of Itsukushima’s mountain Mount Misen is accessible by walking. If you are not the hiking type, you can access the top by one of the two ropeways (also known as cable cars) to the mountain.  However, there is still a mile trek to get to the top of Mount Misen.

After the long trek, enjoy Momiji manju (もみじ饅頭) or red leaf pastry. This is a pastry that is filled with things such as sweet red bean paste, chocolate or caramel. Due to their being many maple trees, the locals make the shape of this manju into a maple leaf (hence Momiji).

Here’s a video:

For more details about this location:

http://visit-miyajima-japan.com/en/culture-and-heritage/patrimoine-naturel/mount-misen.html

I found this video a while ago on a website degreed, a curating website that will help you search for media on what you want to learn. This is the video that I saw under my Japanese skill media:

日本語上手ですね。

This video encourages me to do better with my Japanese and even provides a few helpful tips on using the right grammar or even the right verb. With this I hope that I can continue to get better. I know that I will make mistakes. However, I would like to make less mistakes. I feel as though I am in a solo race to fluency.

MY PROGRESS

Here are my results from my second (?) post:

And here are my current stats as of today:

My writing score has increased quite a bit from last time. As has other stats.
Let’s shoot for Green Belt!

I am close to my goal of being a Orange belt 3rd Kyu. Perhaps I will shoot higher and go for a green belt before this year is over.

And now I present more grammar notes.

Stating Intent Base form verb + つもり+/です

This grammar note is used only when you plan or intend on doing something.

料理を作るつもりです。

探偵になるつもりです。

毎日日本語を勉強するつもりです。

I plan on cooking.

I plan on becoming a detective.

I plan to study Japanese every day.

To have scheduled plans Base form verb + よてい + /です/はある

This grammar note is used only when stating that you have scheduled plans. It is more direct and straight forward than saying you plan to, or you intend on doing something.

インタブに行くよていです。

6時におきくよていです。

あしたでーとーがあるよていです。

I am scheduled to have an interview.

I am scheduled to wake up at 6 o’clock.

I am scheduled to have a date.

And speaking of dates… here is a long dialogue:

DIALOGUE

レイはエマとカフェ・ノワールで会います。彼らは前学期に出会った。

エマ: ね、レイ。ここにいますよ。

レイ: あ、エマ。お待たせしました、申し訳ありません。

エマ: 篤彦先生は厳しいです、ね?

レイ: はい、そうです。篤彦先生は「エッセイを書き終えてから出て行っていいよ」と言いました。

エマ: あのエッセイの締め切りはおとといでしたよ、ね?

レイ: はい。先週、エッセイに出した。しかし、先生は僕にエッセイを書き換えたかったんです。先生は「レイさん、あなたはもっとうまくやれるよ」と言いました。

エマ: なるほど。お父さんみたいです。

レイ: だろう。

ウェイター:ご注文はお決まりですか?

エマとレイ: 黒茶を一つください。

ウェイター:かしこまりました。ほかに何か?

レイとエマ: いいえ、けっこうです。

レイ: そ、れいーくんも黒茶が好きですか?

エマ: はい。将棋をする時、たびたび黒茶を飲みます。

レイ: 将棋をしますか?

エマ: はい。それは趣味です。それに、下手です。

レイ: 本当か?

エマ: 本当。家族に将棋を教えてあげるつもりでした。しかし、かれらは将棋がむずかしいと言います。私は将棋が下手なので、たくさん詰め将棋をします。

レイ: いつか一緒にしましょうか?

エマ: いいよ。しましょう。れいーくんの趣味は?

レイ: 書道。子供の時、書道を習います。

エマ: おもしろい。レイーくんの字がこんなにきちゃんとしているのも不思議ではないです。まだ漢字を学んでいます。教えてくれてください。

レイ: いいよ。

ウェイター: 黒茶をどうぞ。ごゆっくり。

レイとエマ:いただきます。

ウェイター: どういたしまして。

エマ: あ、もう少しで忘れました。私の誕生日のパーティーに行きませんか?

レイ: いいよ。いつですか?

エマ:  来週です。友達のハルはパーティーを飾ってあげます。

レイ: え?ハル?いずみハル?黒くて短い髪?濃紺の目?

エマ:  はい。知り合いですか?(“すごい。とても特定。ちょっと羨ましいな。”)

レイ: 少しです。実は、友達はハルことが好きです。

エマ:  ひょっとして、この友達はヒビキですか?(“良かったです。レイーくんはハルが好きだと一瞬思った。”)

レイ: ピンポン。どうして分かったんですか?

エマ: ハルはいつもヒビキことを話します。ハルはかれはシャイだけど、頼もしい男ですと言います。

レイ: なるほど。イデアがある。聞きませんか?

エマ: 私たちは同じイデアがあるとおもいます。しましょう。

Emma and Rei are meeting at Café Noir. They met last semester.

Emma: Hey, Rei. I’m over here.

Rei: Ah, Emma. Sorry that I kept you waiting.

Emma: Professor Atsuhiko is strict, isn’t he?

Rei: Sure is. He said “you can leave after you finish writing your essay”

Emma: That essay was due the day before yesterday, wasn’t it?

Rei: Yes. I turned in my essay last week. However, he wanted to me rewrite it. He said, “Mr. Ray you can do better than that”.

Emma: I see. Sounds like a father.

Rei: Right.

Waiter: Would you like to order?

Emma and Ray: One black tea please

Waiter: Yes. Anything else?

Ray and Emma: No, thank you.

Rei: So, you like black tea, too.

Emma: Yes. When I play shogi, I often drink black tea.

Rei: You play shogi?

Emma: Yes, it is a hobby. And, I’m not good at it.

Rei: Really?

Emma: Really. I was going to teach my family shogi. However, they say that shogi is difficult. I’m not good at shogi, so I do a lot of Tsume Shogi (Shogi Puzzles).

Rei: Shall we play sometime?

Emma: Sure. Let’s do that. How about you? Any hobbies?

Rei: Calligraphy. I learned it when I was a kid.

Emma: Interesting. No wonder your handwriting is so neat. I’m still learning Kanji. Will you teach me some time?

Rei: Sure.

Waiter: Here is your black tea.

Rei and Emma: Thank you for the tea.

Waiter: You’re welcome.

Emma: Oh, I almost forgot. Would you like to come to my birthday party?

Rei: Sure. When is it?

Emma: Next week. My friend Haru is decorating for me.

Rei: Eh? Haru? Izumi Haru? Short black hair? Wears glasses? Dark blue eyes?

Emma: Yes. Do you know her? (“That’s amazing. Very specific. I’m a little jealous.”)

Rei: A little. A friend of mine likes her.

Emma: Is this friend by any chance, Hibiki? (“Thank goodness. I thought Rei liked Haru for a second there.”)

Rei: Bingo. How’d you know?

Emma: She’s always talking about him. He’s shy, but he’s a reliable man.

Rei: I see. I got an idea. Would you listen to it?

Emma: I think we have the same idea. Sure. Let’s do it.

What is Shogi (将棋)?

2020年01月05日「日」第6週

にほんごのれんしゅう(日本語の練習) 第6週 Japanese Practice Week 6

Hello everyone! Kyuusei here. And happy new year. With that being said, let’s continue with a couple of things about Japan.

人生はチェスの対局みたいですが、僕は将棋をします。

Life is like playing a game of chess… but I play shogi.

Shogi 将棋

Sho 将 -> General’s

Gi 棋-> Board Game

Shogi is Japanese chess. A 9×9 grid with 20 pieces each for both players. With chess, once your pieces are gone, they are out of the game for good. However, with shogi, the pieces you capture can be dropped back on to the board as your allies. That is also the main reason why I think shogi is harder than chess.

Shogi even have ranks. For amateur players, they start out with 15th kyu and work their way up to 1st kyu. After that promotion you are ranked in the dan territory which starts from 1st dan to 8th dan. With professionals however, have their own ranking scale, from 6th kyu to 3rd dan then 4th dan to 9th dan. Supposedly, amateur and professional ranks are only a few ranks away from each other. For instance, if you are an amateur player ranked at 1 dan that is the equivalent of being a 4th kyu in the professional shogi world.

Today I joined 81dojo.com, a site where you can play shogi online with other people. I must say that I’m a total beginner compared to majority of the people on there. However, that will not deter me from improvement. Instead it only puts fire on the coals. I got into shogi because of an anime called March Comes in Like a Lion or 3-gatsu no lion (Kind of weird how they translate that to English. The literal translation is something akin to “March’s Lion”). From there I bought a shogi game app from Microsoft Store and a Shogi Puzzle Book by T. Gene Davis. I started watching shogi tutorial videos on YouTube by HIDETCHI.

This website starts you off at 9th kyu. That’s a beginner for this website. So hopefully I can get past this rank before the year is over. Funny thing is the site is made by HIDETCHI. Go figure!

On another note, here is a grammar note and examples.

I’ve had that experience ➔た-form + ことがある

This grammar is usually used when saying that you have had an experience doing something. So of course, we must use the past tense for this. But wait how can we conjugated with “to have an experience doing ___”?

Ladies and gentlemen, the て-form is back again. Except this time, you must change it to past tense た-form. So, in the past post, you used the て-form just simply switch the てout with た.

自分で髪を切ったことがあります。

日本に行ったことがないけど、ドイツに行ったことがありました。

腕時計を買ったことがあります。

日記を書いたことがあります。

アニメのキャラクターを描いたことがありました。

骨を折ったことがありません。良かった!

(I have had the experience of cutting my hair myself.)

(I haven’t had the experience going to Japan but, I have had the experience of going to Germany.)

(I have had the experience of buying a wrist watch)

(I have had the experience of writing a diary)

(I have had the experience of sketching an anime character)

(I haven’t had the experience of breaking my bones. Thank goodness!)

DIALOGUE

Previously: A young boy named Takeshi has gotten into trouble. His mother told him to sit at the kitchen table until she returns. His friend comes over and wants to play. After Takeshi is convinced to go play by his friend, the phone rings. It’s his mother. Now how did she know he got off his seat and was about to leave.

Now, we start back to where we left off last week. Sounds like Takeshi and his friend are in trouble.

たけし:母さん!どこ?!

お母さん:屋根にいるよ。そして、二人見えるよ。

たけし:家の屋根?!

たけしの友達:え?!わあ、凄い。

お母さん:私の命令は絶対的なんです。私の命令はずっと守られてきたし、これからもいつも守られていくですよ。

たけしの友達: じゃ、あまたね。

たけし: おい!お前!行かないでよ!

お母さん: あなたはもトラブルに巻き込まれるよ。

たけしの友達とたけし: きゃ~!来た!

Takeshi: Mom?! Where are you?!

Mom: I’m on the roof. And, I can see both of you.

Takeshi: Our roof?!

Takeshi’s friend: What?! Wow that’s amazing. Is she a ninja?

Takeshi: Shut up!

Mom: My orders are absolute. My orders have been and will always be.

Takeshi’s friend: Well, see ya.

Takeshi: Hey! You! Don’t you leave!

Mom: You are also in trouble.

Takeshi’s friend and Takeshi: Ahh! She’s here!

ヒビキとレイII

レイ: ね、ヒビキ。今晩、パーティーがあるよ。一緒に行こうか?

ヒビキ: ううん。ちょっと疲れた。

レイ: ハルはパーティーに行きますよ。

ヒビキ: え?!ハ。。。ハルさん?!

レイ: うん。ハルの親友の誕生日のパーティーだよ。彼女の名前はエマだ。エマはイギリス人だよ。

ヒビキ: 何人来るのか?

レイ: 10人ぐらいだ。

ヒビキ: どこか?

レイ: エマのアパトだ。それに、僕たち四人だけはカラオケばーに行く。

ヒビキ: じゃ、行くと思う。

レイ: え、セカンドウインドか?

ヒビキ: ほとけよ。行こうよ。

レイ: はい、はい。

ヒビき: そして、レイ。

レイ: なんだ?

ヒビキ: ありがとう。

レイ: ノー問題。

つづく?

Hibiki and Rei Part II

Rei: Hey, Hibiki. There’s going to be a party tonight. Shall we go together?

Hibiki: Nah. I’m a bit tired.    

Rei: Haru is going the party.

Hibiki: Huh?! M-Ms. Haru?!

Rei: Yeah, it’s her best friend’s birthday party. Her name is Emma. She’s British.

Hibiki: How many people are coming?

Rei: About 10 people.

Hibiki: Where is it?

Rei: At Emma’s apartment. Then just the four of us we’ll go to a karaoke bar.

Hibiki: Well then, I guess I’ll go.

Rei: Eh, getting your second wind?

Hibiki: Leave it be. Let’s go.

Rei: Yeah Yeah.

Hibiki: And Rei.

Rei: Yeah.

Hibiki: Thank you.

Rei: No problem.

In conclusion, I hope that this series is helpful with your journey to learning Japanese and/or taking an interest in the country’s culture. Until then… また来週。

Japanese Culture: Gift Giving and Aizuchi + Goals

2019年12月29日「日」第5週

にほんごのれんしゅう(日本語の練習) 第5週 Japanese Practice Week 5

Hello everyone! Kyuusei here. This will be my last post of the year. With that being said, let’s continue with a few things that I found interesting about Japan this week.

Gift Giving

Now that Christmas is over, I would like to share Japan’s culture on gift giving a bit. In many movies and television and my home during the holidays, I see people tearing away at the Christmas wrapping to get see what they have received. Sometimes, we even use the same wrapping from last year (just using what we have left on the rolls, not picking up the shreds and pasting them back together).

In Japan, things are a bit different. Wrapping is very important in Japan. This dates back to many centuries ago (sometime around the medieval period I believe), where they explained the art of gift giving and how to wrap it. In general, a Japanese person would not reuse the same wrapping.

Furthermore, they usually don’t open gifts in front of the giver until the giver leaves. This may have more to do with how formal their mindset is compared to America. Yes, they are happy that you have given them a gift but, it mostly has to do with being considerate of the giver’s gift and that you (or someone else) worked hard on the gift wrapping.

Aizuchi

はい、そうですね、マジ 、なるほど。

These are words or phrases used to show that you are actively listening to the conversation that is going on. They may even nod their head to show body language that they are listening. Furthermore, rephrasing a question to what was already discussed is also apart of this cultural expression of active listening.

For instance:

A: きょう、このかのじょに話していました。

B: かのじょですか?

A: そして、彼女は本当にきれいでした。

B: そうか。

A: So, I was talking to this girl today?

B: A girl you say?

A: And she was really pretty.

B: I see.

This may seem like they aren’t listening to you. However, without aizuchi, the speaker may assume that you aren’t interested in hearing them out or disengaged in the conversation. Without aizuchi, there may even be pauses of awkward silence. Perhaps this was put in place to keep the conversation flowing.

What I learned this week:

から と ので ➔ because

から

This is used when you want to give a specific reason for something. It is inflexible and is more direct. Politeness is a major key in the Japanese language, so let’s show you another way of giving reasons.

新しいワンピースの映画を見たいから、パーティーに行きません。

I won’t go to the party because I want to see the new One-Piece movie.

ので

This is usually used if you want to be vaguer when giving a reason. In most cases, there may be more than one reason to give.

For instance, “I don’t want to go outside, because it is hot, it is muggy, I dislike going outside in the heat, and there is nothing to do outside today.”

Instead of saying all of that, we can just give one reason which will indicate that this might not be the only reason we don’t want to go outside.

あしたはテストがあるので、勉強しています。

I am studying because I have a test tomorrow. (may also mean “I want to get a good score or I don’t want to fail this test or this is my worst subject so I have to put more time in studying for this test”)

Using ので with だor です are replaced with な

今日は寒いです。外に出かけません。

今日は寒いなので、外に出かけません。

I will not go outside, because it is cold.

静かだ。読めます。

静かなので、読めます。

I can read, because it is quiet.

How to (do something/ the way of doing something) Verb + かた

With this new grammar you have to do something special to the verb. You must change the stem to what is called the い-form. The い-form is basically where you replace end of the verb (such as つくる- to cook) to the い-form (つくり). Here are the conjugations for this form:

う→ い

つ→ ち

る→ り

む→ み

ぶ→ び

ぬ→ に

ぐ→ ぎ

く→ き

する→ し

Now let’s see some examples:

ドライブしかたが分かりません。

I don’t know how to drive.

この漢字を書きかたが分かります。

I know how to write this kanji.

Difficult to do – Verb (-form) + にくい

Now that we know how to use the い-form, let’s take a look at how to say something is difficult to do.

この本は読みにくいから、あの本はよみます。

I’ll read that book, because this book is difficult to read.

You could probably use the negative form of にくい to say it is not difficult. However, it would be better to learn how to say something is easy to do instead. That is where we  shall go from here.

Easy to do – Verb (-form) + やすい

ひらがなとカタカナは読みやすいです。しかし、漢字は読みにくいです。

Hiragana and katakana are easy to read. However, Kanji is hard to read.

Too much – Verb (-form) + すぎる

This is used to say that you do something too much.

毎日かなを書きますから、かなは書きやすいです。

It is easy to write kana (Hiragana and Katakana), because I write kana every day.

DIALOGUES

たけしとかれの友達VSたけしのお母さん

A young boy named Takeshi has gotten into trouble. His mother told him to sit at the kitchen table until she returns. His friend comes over and wants to play. However,…

A:ねえ、たけし。おかあさんが家にもういないよ。遊ぼう。

B:ダメだ。母さんが「ここに座ってなさい」と言いました。

A:いいから。お母さんの言うことが忘れてよ。それに、おまえは退屈そうだった。

B:(”このバカは僕を殺そうとしています。だけど...”)行こう。

A:やったー!お、電話は鳴っている。

B:もしもし。たけしです。

C:どこにいくのよ?!

B: ごめんなさい。間違った番号です。失礼します。

A:誰かでした?

B:母さん。

A:マジで?!わあ、また鳴っている。

つづく

A: Hey, Takeshi. Your mother isn’t home anymore. Let’s play.

B: No way. My mother said, “Sit here.”.

A: Forget what your mother says. Besides you look bored.

B: (“This idiot is trying to get me killed but… [he is right that I am bored]”) Let’s go.

A: Alright! Oh, the phone is ringing.

B: Hello. This is Takeshi.

C: Where are you going?

B: Sorry. Wrong number. Excuse me.

A: Who was it?

B: Mom.

A: Seriously?! Wow, it’s ringing again.

To be continued…

ワンパンマンは誰?!

A young girl runs into the house asking her mother for water. What has made her look so exhausted?

花ちゃん: た。。。ただいま。見...水をいいぱいちょうだい。

お母さん:おかえりなさ。。。うわ。。。はい、どうぞ。どうして汗しているんの?

花ちゃん: (水を早く飲んでいます)公園で運動していましたんです。

お母さん:どんな運動したの?

花ちゃん: まず、プロテインシェイクを飲みました。そのあと、腕立て伏せ100回やりて、上体起こし100回やりて、スクワットを100やりました。そして、ランニング10キロをしました。

お母さん: え?!100回?!プロテインシェイク?!!なぜ?!

花ちゃん: 私はワンパンマンのようになりたい。

お母さん:ワンパンマンは誰の?!

Who is One Punch Man?!

Hana-chan: I-I’m home. G-give me a bunch of water.

Mother: Welcome bac- Wow… sure, here you go. Why are you sweating?

Hana-chan: (Drinks water quickly) It’s because I was exercising in the park.

Mother: What kind?

Hana-chan: I drank a protein shake, did 100 push-ups, did 100 sit-ups, and did 100 squats. After that, I ran 10 kilometers.

Mother: What?! 100?! Protein shake?!! Why?!

Hana-chan: I want to be like One Punch Man!

Mother: Who is One Punch Man?!

Since the new year is coming soon, I would like to address goals. Like Hana-chan in this story, we must strive towards a goal and maybe even aim to be like someone we idolize. If you have new year’s resolutions, I think it would be great to start doing them now. We don’t need a new year to change something about ourselves. Even if it is a long-term goal, set small achievable goals to complete it next year. So, don’t wait – start now. Even if it is hard, pace yourself, try meeting your goals, and do your best.

For myself, I have a few goals:

Learning goals:

  • Learn how to use more than 500 kanji. (I’ve been learning how to use grade school kanji – about 200 kanji)
  • Get a green belt in JA Sensei. (I’m on Orange belt 1st kyu)
  • Keep writing this weekly blog.
  • Complete a shogi puzzle book (I have done all the 1 move shogi puzzles. I am now doing 3 move shogi puzzles. This book goes up to more than 7 moves. Good luck future me!)

Physical goals:

Been working on this since October of this year. At first it was tough. Especially the running. I just had to learn to pace myself and get the right shoes.

  • Did this every day:
  • 100 push ups
  • 100 sit ups
  • 100 squats
  • I am jogging three days out of the week:
  • 5 km jog (Had to start somewhere since my stamina is poor. I will work my way up to 10 km. Then I will consider doing this every day. See, pacing. Remember not to push yourself too hard. Learn your current limits. Building upon yourself is all that matters. So, once again pace yourself.)

In conclusion,

I hope that this series is helpful with your journey to learning Japanese and/or taking an interest in the country’s culture. Until then… また来週。。。また来年!

Snowball Fighting is a Sport?! + Explaining てーForm

2019年12月22日「日」第4週

日本語の練習 第4週 (Japanese Practice Week 4)

日本語の練習へよこそう❢

Welcome to week 4. To start us off here is a poem:

雪が降った。

寒いですけど、

ゆきがっせん

始めよう!

(The snow has fell

It’s cold but,

let’s start,

The Snow Battle!)

雪 ゆき→ Snow

合戦 がっせん→ Battle

雪合戦/ゆきがっせん→ Snow Battle

Yukigassen. This is a snowball fight competition first held in 1989 in Sobetsu, Hokkaido. It is now played in many cities worldwide. It is akin to capture-the-flag with the mixture of a snowball fight between two teams. Here is a video showcasing one of their competitions:

雪合戦はおもしろいと思います。

USING て-FORM TO CONJUGATE U-VERBS AND IRREGULAR VERBS

The te-form is put in use to conjugate u-verbs and irregular verbs. They are conjugated:

·        To add an “ing” at the end of a verb

読んでいます 

(Reading)

·        To connect verbs

足で図書館に行って、きさてんでお茶を飲んで、日本語を勉強しました。 

(I went to the library by foot, drank tea at a café, and studied Japanese.)

·        To add please to a verb (usually a request).

聞いて下さい

(Please listen)

How to conjugate:

It depends on the ending of the verb. For instance iku (the irregular verb “to go”) changes to itte and sagasu (the u-verb “to search”) changes to sagashite.

Here are the conjugations:

·        U-Verbs

うつるー>って、むぶぬー>んで、くー>いて、ぐー>いで すー>して

·        Irregular Verbs

すろー>して、くる-> きて

Another example sentence:

バイクでクラスに行って、日本語の試験があった。あやうく遅くだ。

 (I went to class on a motorbike and had a Japanese exam. I was almost late.)

Here is the te-form song video that helped me remember these conjugations:

僕のはじめてのてーフォルムビデオを見ました。

Now, about the ru-verbs. Fortunately, these are less complex than the other kinds of verbs regarding the te-form. All you must do is drop the ru from the end of the verb and add te. 

DIALOGUES

Their actions will be in parenthesis [ex.(he is eating a hamburger)]. Their thoughts will be in quotations within parenthesis [ex. (“This is not an interesting movie”)]. From now on, I will be doing the dialogues like this. Furthermore, all translations will be at the end of each dialogue.

意地悪なクラスメイトMean Classmate (Mixed)

A girl sees a familiar face at a café. It’s her classmate. Since they are both in Japanese class together, she wanted to chat and practice her Japanese. However,…

A:ここにすわってもいいですか?

B:あなたはだれ?

A:(“ひどいですよ。”) 私を忘れますか?

B:どこかであなたにお会いした覚えがあります。ゆきこ先生のクラスがありますか?

A:はい。先週、私たちは教室で会いました。

B:ごめん。私は今すぐいそがしいだから、すわってはダメです。また今度ね。

A:分かった。じゃ、またね。(”かのじょはちょっと意地悪な人だよ。”)

Translation:

A: May I sit here?

B: Who the heck are you?

A: (“Jeez that’s harsh.”) Did you forget me?

B: I remember seeing you somewhere. Do you have Ms. Yukiko’s class?

A: Yes. We met last week.

B: Sorry. Since I’m busy right now, you can’t sit down. Maybe next time, okay?

A: Understood. Well then, see you. (“She’s a bit of a mean person”)

日本語をもっと勉強しなければいけません

A: あの,けんーくん。

B: はい、ジョン。

A: この映画のキャストは日本語で話しますが、あまり分かりませんでした。あなたは?

B: ぜんぜん分かりませんでした。会話が早すぎるから、映画は分からなかった。

AとB: はあ~

Translation

A: Hey, Ken.

B: Yes, John.

A: The cast in this movie were speaking in Japanese but, I couldn’t understand it much. How about you?

B: I didn’t understand anything at all. I couldn’t understand the movie, because the conversations were too fast.

A and B: Sigh~

Continuation of the dialogue from Week 3

ヒビキトレイ

This is Hibiki’s friend named Rei. They live in an apartment together. Hibiki has just arrived home from the bookstore.

A: ただいま。

B: おかえり。こんばんわ、ヒビキ。

A: あ、レイ、こんばんわ。いつここに帰りましたか?

B: 一分前だけ。 お前は嬉しそうだ。

A: ええ、本当か。

B: うん、本当。しごとはどうでしたか。

A: 別に。

B: あの少女はまた見ましたか。

A: あの。。。

B: 当たり?ピンポン?

A: ウザイ。

B: じゃ、どうだった。今度はあの少女と話していましたか。

A:ええ、僕はハルさんに本を探してくれた。

B: ハルちゃん、ね?いい名前。あの本はどこにあったか?

A: 一番高いのシェルフの上でした。

B: わ~一番高いのシェルーおい!なぜそれをしましたか?お前は高所恐怖症がないのか。

A: ええ、とってもこわかったよ。

B: なれば、なぜ。

A: 僕の仕事なんだ。それに、ハルさんと話したかったから。(彼はコラを飲んでいます。)

B: お。じゃ、結婚式はいつ?

A: (ゴホゴホ)

B:とにかく、彼女とデートするつもりか?(ヒビキにハンカチをあげました。)

A: いくつか?小学生か? ほっといてくれよ。

B: はい~辞めるよ。辞める。

つづく?

A: I’m home.

B: Welcome back. Good evening, Hibiki.

A: Ah, Rei. Good evening. When did you get back here?

B: Just a minute ago. You look happy.

A: Eh? Really?

B: Yep, really. How was work?

A: Nothing in particular.

B: Did you see that girl again.

A: Uhh…

B: Am I right? Bingo?

A: You’re being annoying.

B: So, how was it? Did you talk to her this time?

A: Yeah, I helped Ms. Haru find a book.

B: Haru, huh? Nice name. Where was that book?

A: It was on the highest shelf.

B: Wow it was on the highest shel- Hey! Why did you do that? Don’t you have acrophobia?

A: Yeah, it was very scary.

B: Then why?

A: It’s my job. And, I wanted to talk to Ms. Haru. (He’s drinking cola.)

B: Oh. So, when’s the wedding?

A: (Strong cough)

B: Anyway, do you plan on dating her? (Gave Hibiki a handkerchief.)

A: How old are you? Are you in grade school? Leave me be.

B: Okay~ I’ll stop. I’ll stop.

To be continued?

I hope that this may help others in their reading comprehension. I’ll be back next Sunday with more.

With that being said, happy holidays.

Japanese Idioms

2019年12月15日「日」第3週 

日本語の練習 第3週 (Japanese Practice Week 3)

I have recently come back to learning Japanese on the JA Sensei app. I want to get an unlimited account as soon as possible. This app has tons of content available compared to when I was using it at U of L. I decided to start from the beginning. Here are my results so far:

It is fun to see progress

There are some categories that I should work on such as the kanji and kana drawing category. Fortunately, the reading comprehension category is not an issue. Each lesson comes with interesting culture topics (healthcare, variations of politeness, etc.). So, that will increase as I complete each lesson. Overall, I still have much to learn about the language and the culture of Japan.

No alt text provided for this image

On another note, George has published Japanese from Zero 5. (ジョージ先生, おめでとうございます!絶対に買っています。[Congratulations, George sensei]) Many people have waited for this book for years. Since I started the fourth book a few weeks ago, I, fortunately, will not have to suffer the wait. The kanji is getting hard but…

「僕はまだ練習しなければいけません。」

(I still must practice.)

With this book out, I hope that he will continue working on the Japanese from Zero videos.

Speaking of the Japanese from Zero video series, I found another YouTube channel that will help review Japanese concepts called JapanSocietyNYC. I will get into their main lesson playlist soon. As for now, I am enjoying their Uki Uki Nihongo series. I recently watched their idiom video:

「弱肉強食」は一番好きのイディオムです。

Finally, here are a few dialogues. I thought I should revisit that one dialogue from the first week. There might be another part to it for next week. I have been thinking about adding titles and more context to these dialogues (whether the speech is polite, casual or mixture of the two). From now on, I will be adding this content. Furthermore, I have went back and translated majority of what I write into English. These translations will be added for now on as well.

Continuation of the dialogue from Week 1

ヒビキとハル II (Polite) (Hibiki and Haru Part II)

ヒビキは本屋で働きます。ヒビキはハルの一番の好きの小説に探しています。だが...

(Hibiki works at a bookstore. Hibiki is looking for Haru’s most favorite novel. But…)

A:見つけましたけど...なぜあの小説は...

(I found it but… why is that novel…)

8分後

A: お...お待たせいたしました。 その小説を見...見つけました。

(So- sorry for the wait. I fou- found that novel.)

B: 本当にありがとうございます。どこに見つけましたか?

(Thank you very much. Where did you find it?)

A: 一番高...高いのシェ...シェルフの上でした。

(On top of the hig- highest sh- shelf.)

B: わあ~ 凄い。すみません。

(Wow, amazing. Sorry.)

A: いいえ。ノ...ノー問題です。

(Not at all. N- no problem.)

B: え、大丈夫ですか?あなたは揺れってますよ。

(Uh, are you okay? You’re shaking.)

A: はい、大...大丈夫です。

(Yes, I- I’m fine.)

つづく?

(To be continued?)

イェイ ケーキ!(Casual) (Yay cake!)

お父さんと彼の娘さんはケーキバイキングで多いケーキを食べます。

(A father and his daughter eat at a cake buffet.)

A:そのケーキをたべてもいい?

(May eat that cake?)

B:どんなケーキ?

(What kind of cake?)

A:レッドベルベットのです。

(The red velvet one)

B:はい、もいいよ。たべすぎないだね。

(Yeah, go ahead. Don’t eat too much, okay?)

A:はい~!

(Okay!)

昼ごはんの時間 (Mix) (Lunchtime)

彼女たちは食堂で昼ごはんを食べています。

(The girls are eating lunch in the cafeteria.)

Ⓐこの味はおいしい。これを食べなけらばなりません。

(This flavor is good. You have to eat this.)

Ⓑ何ですか?

(What is it?)

Ⓐラメン。

(Ramen.)

Ⓑわあ~ おいしいそう。じゃ、いただきます。

(Wow. It looks good. Well, thanks for the food.)

Ⓐどうですか?

(How is it?)

Ⓑあ~本当においしいよ。

(Ah. It’s really good.)

Ⓐでしょう?

(Right?)

Ⓑ作ったの?

(Did you make this?)

Ⓐええ、作った。

(Yeah, I made it.)

Ⓑどう作ったの?

(How did you make it?)

Ⓐ教えて上げるけれど、誰にもこのレシピの秘訣を言ってはだめよ。

(I’ll tell you but, you can’t tell anyone about this recipe.)

That is it for this week. また来週。(See you next week.)