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Tag: Japanese

Foreigners misreading Japanese kanji of “two men one woman” is too pure for Japanese Internet

My pick for the SoraNews24 article this week is something that a lot of Japanese-language learners can probably relate with: Foreigners misreading Japanese kanji of “two men one woman” is too pure for Japanese Internet.

Anyone who’s studied Japanese before has probably tried to “sound out” kanji before, that is, attempting to read a kanji you’ve never seen before by deducing its meaning through the parts that make it up. Sometimes they can make sense (“person” plus “tree” equals “rest”) but more often than not they don’t (“sun” plus “sound” equals “darkness???”).

And when misreadings occur because of assumptions, they can have hilarious results, just like the example in this article. I won’t spoil what the Japanese-learner read the kanji composed of “man-woman-man” as, but let’s just say it’s pretty far from the actual Japanese definition.

Read it and find out for yourself here!

Top image: PAKUTASO (edited by SoraNews24)

Japanese Twitter can’t stop laughing at this JLPT listening question straight out of Evangelion

My pick for the SoraNews24 article this week is the article that I had a one-in-a-million connection with: Japanese Twitter can’t stop laughing at this JLPT listening question straight out of Evangelion.

A few days ago I was looking around the Japanese Internet, seeing if there was an article I could do. I stumbled upon a tweet of someone showing off a listening question from a past JLPT test that was basically taken from the anime Evangelion.

That sounded really familiar, in fact a little too familiar, so I did a little searching and saw that the test was administered in December 2009, the date when I took the test myself! I remember how that question (which was completely out of place on the test, the rest of which was 100% SAT-like serious) made the entire class burst out laughing.

I couldn’t believe how lucky I was to be have taken the same level test on the same day in the same year, so I took it as a sign and had to write the article with my own personal perspective. Check it out here.

Featured image: PAKUTASO

W.T.F. Japan: One year anniversary special! Top 5 W.T.F. Japan articles 【Weird Top Five】

This week for my SoraNews24 W.T.F. Japan article, I wrote about the top five W.T.F. Japan articles.

Wow, has it really been a year already? I wasn’t sure how long the W.T.F. series would last when I first started it, but people really liked it, and now, one year later, it’s fun taking a look at which articles were liked the most.

Honestly the popularity of some of the articles on this list was a complete surprise. Maybe I should take them as hints for what to write more of…?

 

Either way, make sure you’ve seen the best W.T.F. Japan had to offer this year by clicking below!

Read the article here.

W.T.F. Japan: Top 5 kanji with ironic meanings 【Weird Top Five】

This week for my SoraNews24 W.T.F. Japan article, I wrote about the top five kanji with ironic meanings.

In English, words can be broken down into smaller parts. For example, “biology” is “bio” (meaning “life”) plus “ology” (meaning “the study of”). The same thing goes for Japanese too, and sometimes you can even break down the kanji themselves to figure out how their parts come together to give their meaning.

Except sometimes, when you look at the individual parts of a kanji under a microscope, they don’t really come together in the way you’d expect. In fact, they might even end up giving you the complete opposite meaning that the kanji actually has!

Who are the worst of these “ironic kanji” offenders? Only one way to find out!

Read the article here.

W.T.F. Japan: Top 5 most confusing Japanese compound words【Weird Top Five】

This week for my SoraNews24 W.T.F. Japan article, I wrote about the top five most confusing Japanese compound words.

Just like in English, many words in Japanese are made up of putting two words/prefixes/suffixes together. For example, “biology” is the “ology” (study) of “bio” (life), and in Japanese seibutsugaku is the gaku (study) of seibutsu (living things).

Most of the time, the compound words make sense like that. But sometimes, they can mix together in strange and mysterious ways that make no sense at first glance.

What are five of the most confusing ones? Well I’m glad you asked!

Read the article here.

W.T.F. Japan: Top 5 confusing Japanese Internet slang words 【Weird Top Five】

This week for my SoraNews24 W.T.F. Japan article, I wrote about the top five confusing Japanese Internet slang words.

Internet slang can be confusing even in your native language. For example, do you know what TIL or MFW mean?

It’s like you’re learning a whole new language, and when you have to learn internet slang in a foreign language, it’s like you’re learning a whole new language… inside a whole new language!

To make it a little easier, this week I took a look at the top five most confusing Japanese internet slang words and did my best to explain them.

Even if you don’t know any Japanese at all, you’ll probably have fun seeing just how crazy some of them can get.

Read the article here.

W.T.F. Japan: Top 5 “shikata ga nai” (“it can’t be helped”) situations in Japan 【Weird Top Five】

This week for my RocketNews24 W.T.F. Japan article, I wrote about the top five “shikata ga nai” (“it can’t be helped”) situations in Japan

This was a fun article to write, mostly because all of the situations are really little more than mild inconveniences, so I went all-out in exaggerating the kind of reactions people can have to them. I think there are more bald eagles in this one article than every other I’ve written thus far.

What does that even mean? Only one way to find out!

Read the article here.

W.T.F. Japan: Top 5 kanji with the longest readings 【Weird Top Five】

This week for my RocketNews24 W.T.F. Japan article, I wrote about the top five kanji with the longest readings.

I love doing articles on “the most ___ kanji ever” because I used to get asked those questions so often by my students. And back then I didn’t really have any answers besides what Google brought up, and that wasn’t always the most reliable source.

But now, thanks to my readily-available references in Japan, I can write articles to give any enterprising Japanese students the answers they desperately need. Which kanji are the most difficult? Which kanji are the strangest?

We now know the answers to those very important questions, and now the answer to which have the longest readings can be yours to know too.

Read the article here.

W.T.F. Japan: Top 5 most difficult Japanese tongue twisters (with videos!) 【Weird Top Five】

This week for my RocketNews24 W.T.F. Japan article, I wrote about the top five most difficult Japanese tongue twisters.

Even if you don’t know any Japanese, it’s still fun to try out tongue twisters in another language. After all, it’s not like the tongue twisters themselves make a whole lot of sense anyway, it’s just sputtering the sounds out that counts.

In fact, since your non-native tongue is trained in different ways, it may even make it easier! …or not!

Either way, there’s only one way to find out.

Read the article here.

W.T.F. Japan: Top 5 kanji used to represent foreign countries 【Weird Top Five】

This week for my RocketNews24 W.T.F. Japan article, I wrote about the top five kanji used to represent foreign countries.

While Japan often refers to countries using the Japanese-ified version of their names (like Furansu for France), they can also refer to them using just a single kanji.

Since it’s only a single kanji, this is most often done in writing, particularly in newspapers and headlines where wordcounts are at a premium. Why bother writing our Furansu as four whole characters (フランス) when you can just write the single kanji to represent France instead (仏)?

There are many more interesting country-kanji out there, some of which have strange stories behind them… especially America.

Read the article here.