This week for my RocketNews24 W.T.F. Japan article, I wrote about top five most confusing Japanese counter words.
Japanese is a hard language to learn, but not for the reasons most people think it is. I did a previous W.T.F. Japan about the top five myths about learning Japanese, and I stand by that kanji is definitely not the hardest part of Japanese.
Maybe someday I’ll do a W.T.F. on the top five reasons Japanese is actually hard, but for now I just wanted to focus on one of the harder aspects of the language: counter words.
In English we say a “head” of lettuce and a “loaf” of bread, but in Japanese they have counter words for everything. No matter what you’re counting – people, computers, books, sheep – there’s a counter word that must be used. You can’t just say “three sheep” and be understood, you have to say the equivalent of “three heads of sheep.”
In this W.T.F. I go over some of the more ridiculous counter words, which have tripped me and my students up for years. Even if you’ve never studied Japanese before, I think it will be a fun read just to see how linguistically different (and crazy) Japanese can be sometimes.