March 31, 2008

hanashi so desu to seem about to verb

To say that someone seems about to verb in Japanese, use the following construction:

Verb(base II) So^ desu

This one is an easily constructed grammar principle. First we take any verb we like and put it into base II.

Hanasu - to speak -
Hanasu(base II) = hanashi

Ochiru - to fall -
Ochiru(base II) = ochi

Naku - to cry
Naku(base II) = naki

add So^ desu to the base II of Japanese verbs will make the verb take on the nuance of things which are about to take place or that look like they are going to do it soon, ie. seems about to verb.

hanashi so^ desu
hanashiso^ desu - It seems he is about to speak

ochi so^ desu
ochiso^ desu - looks like they are about to fall down
For iru and eru ending verbs simply drop off the last syllable ru and and your So^ desu. For all other forms put into i ending.

March 27, 2008

3 types of trains

3 types of Japanese trains + 1 bonus train
There are three basic types of trains that a gaijin living in Japan should know about. Without knowledge of the different types of trains, you could find yourself at the wrong eki (train station), get off at the wrong place and this could cause you to arrive late and we can't have that. If you are a gaijin living in Japan you'll run across these terms sooner or later but its better that you get introduced to them here so that you won’t be confused about the different types of passenger trains you’ll come across when you roam about the land of the rising sun, Japan.
There are 3 basic types of trains that run in Japan. There are few cities in Japan that aren't covered with some mileage of train track, but not much. The crossing whistles always blow and the crossing gates are constantly opening and shutting. Of course the trains stop running usually by 1 or 2 am. The three types of trains that are regularly used in Japan are, in order of frequency of stops from most to least are as follow:
Tokkyu (special limited),
Kyuukou (limited express), and
Futsuu (regular).
Tokkyu trains stop at only the major train stations and are much faster in terms of getting you there quicker. Kyukoo trains stop more periodic, while the Futsuu trains stop at every stop in between, and are thus quite slower than the other two. Ideally you would want to ride a Tokkyu train, get off and wait for a Kyuukou unless that train doesn't go to your destination, and using Kyukoo for small train rides to the very next station etc. If your destination is a small hamlet in the country side then you will have to take for at least a small portion of your ride the Futsuu train. The train I haven’t mentioned which has incorporated the use of the new maglev technology and has achieved speeds in the upper 500 km/hr is the Shinkansen, or bullet train, isn’t your everyday run of the mill train. Essentially the shinkansen is a very classy and expensive ride that covers great distances, like from Tokyo to Osaka for example. Hopefully you will enjoy all your train rides and become accustomed to this type of culture in constant transit during your visits to the land of the rising sun, Japan.

March 19, 2008

Japanese Grammar - must verb

Ghetto grammar supplement #114


Today’s ghetto grammar lesson takes us to Kansas, where along with Toto today’s language journey will take us and show us how to say a very long, and unfamiliar Japanese bunpo(grammar) construction, 1st presented in my other article here. It only looks long and formidable at first but I’ll tell you the secret ghetto way of learning this seemingly difficult grammar. You must get into a ghetto groove and really internalize this rhythm. You will want to play with this exercise to get it just right, but in the end we are serving ourselves lanuguage gravy train, by allowing ourselves time for speech practice, and also by putting verbs into the base I + nakereba narimasen bunpo structure in Japanese for - must verb

Do you remember the song “Follow the Yellow Brick Road”? Even if you don’t,  just say the words “Follow the Yellow Brick Road” and chant it a few times to get into the right groove and rhythm yourself. Yes do it now ! Say "Follow the Yellow Brick Road. Say it again and again then after you get a feel for the rhythm of that phrase, its time to commence the Japanese bunpo construction practice session.

It is always a good idea pronounce your words with pure vowels, we want to make our choir teacher proud of our diction, and good habits now are better than bad habits later. It is highly likely if your speech tends towards pure vowels that the people we speak to in the target language may actually understand us. And that is the goal... or one of them at least...TO BE UNDERSTOOD! (Or at least get people to nod as if they understand.)

Lets say it again (Follow the Yellow Brick Road) one more time just to make sure we have just the right rhythm at a comfortable tempo. After repeating the phrase you should be able to feel tit's rhythm. What we then do is super-impose the dreaded mile long grammar structure for must verb onto the rhythm of the chant, "Follow the Yellow Brick Road.” example: iku - to go

Click here to download now!!

iku - base I - ika plug it into the grammar for must verb, Base I +nakereba narimasen remembering the rhythm of the above Phrase that you and Toto continue to chant.

I ka na ke re ba na ri ma sen. This works good with one syllable stemmed verbs like iku  where the stem becomes I so that the whole chant becomes

I ka na ke re ban a ri ma sen.  I got to go... homie!

Ikanakereba narimasen! I gotto  go... homie!

Also hanasu(to speak) works

Hanasanakereba narimasen - Ive got to speak... homie.

As do the verbs  Kaeru(to return), and kaku(to write) 

Kaeranakereba narimasen - I must return

Kakanakereba narimasen - I must write

O.K. so not all of the verbs will fit tidily into the "Follow the yellow brick road"'s 7 syllable pattern, even ikanakereba narimasen has 10 clappable syllables to our western ears. Basically "Follow the Yellow Brick Road," has 3 strong downbeats and a pickup to repeat it again. Do the same with base I verb + nakereba narimasen.

Try some of your own to the unique rhythm of "Follow the Yellow Brick Road”

Your Japanese will surely impress the masses with its new rhythmical style, and not only that, but you can now say I must verb a little easier.

Follow the yellow brick road. Ganbatte ne! Do your best! Makurasuki sensei.     

Learn a New Language: Rosetta Stone



Compete Now! $8.95 Domain Names Transfers from Dotster



Collaboration Made Simple - Free Trial

March 17, 2008

Some serious Talk about Sake

In Japan you have your sho^chu and your sake. We don't pronounce sake like it looks, which is to say like, 'for pete's sake', we say the ke like the ke in keg. So instead of for pete's sake, you say, sa with a dropped jaw and ke like kay, so in effect you are really saying sakay. The problem with this pronunciation is that you will have failed to say SAKE correctly. Let me try this... one more time... In Japan, you have for your alcoholic beverage satisfaction, 1 of 3 choices which may or may not fit your pallete. Upper or middle or indifferent and otherwise, your choices all boil down to how much rice and in what way it was fermented.
The three choices for alcoholic beverages in Japan are; 1. Sho^chu, 2. Sake, or 3. Bi-ru. Sho^chu are the honorific 'spirits' made of all sorts of wheat + fermented rice. Sake is the Japanese equivalent of our fermented grape wine, and Bi-ru is beer made from fermented rice. You may be familiar with some of the well known Japanese beers, but you may not know that they were made more out of rice than from anything else.
As for alcoholic content, ranges are from anywhere past the Sake threshold of 15º degrees all the way up to 37º-39º or thereabouts. Sake varies in alcoholic content anywhere that our equivalent grape wine varieties exist, that is roughly between 7-15 % or as the Japanese 7º-15º degrees. And of course beer as we might be familiar with comes in at from between 3.5% to sometimes nowadays with "Wicked ale" or "Bastard Ale" up to a whopping 8% or 8º.
This brings me to formulate a hypothesis about what the º sign means in English. If in English we say 15% in Japanese it is said to contain 15º. With that said, it is to say that º = %. Got that?

How to say I have asthma in Japanese

How to say, “ I have asthma”, in Japanese

To say that you have something or to imply that something exists somewhere not necessarily in your presence, you use the verb to have or aru. In Japanese this verb is used in quite a few different mannerisms as does English and its own verb to have, like having went, or I have not, or I have to go, I have five loafs and 2 fishes. I didn’t’ have that many, or Have you ever been to Disneyland. If de is added before the verb aru it is Japanese’s most useful non –needed verb to be or is. The use of is or the verb to be can be likened to Japanese de aru. De aru turns into de arimasu, or de gozaimasu. Aru in Exalted form is gozaru, or to honorifically possess or to have.
Zensoku - asthma

Hazu or you ought to

Japanese Plug and Play Ghetto Grammar JPPGG©#103
Verb in Plain Form (P.F.) + HAZU DESU - You ought to . . .
How to say you ought to (_some verb_), in Japanese.
Ought to – HAZU

In Japanese, to say that something is expected to happen, or that something ought to happen, use the following grammar constructions:

Verb in Plain Form (P.F) + HAZU DESU
Verb (P.F.) + HAZU GA ARU
Verb in (P.F.) GA NAI

Both past and present tense cases are present. So all you have to do is plug in some Japanese verb that sounds appropriate and listen to what kind of reactions words get with the native Japanese. You see, you have to test a lot of words out to see if some of the ones you have been learning are even still in use. For as such may occasion be that the word has changed in its colloquial setting or you may find that you don’t yet have a firm and complete understanding of some words. Use this grammar principle next time you want to test out new ways of saying things. Listen to how your words are responded to and with what kinds of words.

Verb(Base TA) + HAZU GA ARU


1. IKU HAZU GA NAI DESU *– (He) ought to have left (went) There is no reason for him to go.

2. AYAMARU HAZU GA NAI DESU* – He shouldn’t have to apologize

3. TANOSHIKU NARU HAZU DA – It ought to start getting fun, it ought to be fun. It ought to get better from here on out.

4. ARU JA NAI? Don’t you have one?

5. ARU HAZU YO! – I should have one, or, “It ought to be there”

5a. A little KAIWA to learn by –

Tanakasan (to Miurasan):
{Do you have a flashlight?}

Miurasan:”DOKKA MITA YO!
{I saw them somewhere!)
(It’s here somewhere for sure}

Other possible inflections of translation for

(“I saw them sitting somewhere) or
(They are here somewhere.)
(They've got to be here. They ought to be here)

Lets end last with a good solid definition of HAZU – Not to be confused with the goby fish or haze because those are some fine tasting fish quite delicious when dipped from tempura batter and fried like shrimp dipped in batter ~ barioishii!

* About nai desu vs. arimasen -

Which of the two phrases nai desu or arimasen is a more polite way of saying that there isn’t such a thing or that none exists? Both are used quite interchangeably but arguably, arimasen is the better choice. Avoiding the plain form of verbs and cheating its elegance of verb formation as in the MASEN of ARU in base II versus a fake and cheap desu ending, although it is a polite form of the verb -to be- makes it a worse choice between the two. Nai is still plain form and aru has been verbalized and conjugates out into arimasen,

* About Osaka Ben or the Dialect of Osaka –

Sometimes you may hear words that instead of masen will say mahen. This is purposefully done to any polite and is Osaka ben. Many people use Osaka ben. It is one of the largest cities in the world. Going 60 km., it would still take you over three hours to get to the heart of the city or downtown to the outskirts. Osaka has a central alley that young people and many interesting things are going on in downtown Osaka. Has a rich reggae fan population as well as surfers in Osaka.

March 15, 2008

Plain Form + to Japanese grammar transformations

The Japanese particle to has usage similar to the more easily facilitated toki ni, and some could say that it is perhaps a distant relative of the tte morpheme denoting " quotes.

Any sentence that you would use toki ni , you could substitute and instead use just to. Use it in times when you want to say, " at some non-specific time. Examples will show you so much better than I can explain, here are some for your understanding ponderances. Go Japanese learner Go!
Japanese grammar, studying Japanese words, anything that is not in English is good for your language health. Ever striving towards better Japanese.

ex. 1) gyu^nyu o nomanai to seicho wa shinai

You wont grow strong and tall if you don't drink your milk!

ex. 2) oeru to - when it ends

After doing these two examples it occurs to me that the particle to more often means if than when. Thanks for staying tuned to your favorite saketalkie midngight Japanese language smorgasbord!

As Always,
Do your Best
Ganbatte Ne!

March 13, 2008

Japanese word flowage

Many words in Japanese don’t have exact, equivalent translations in English. The same situations just don’t often happen exactly the same in both countries. Japan has a very old national history dating back to at least 600 A.D. Our Americanized English simply hasn’t developed in the same way. We simply don’t have the same circumstances in both countries. Customs and traditions being different and unique to each country’s environment and history.

O sewa sama deshita – You did a terribly awfully nice favor for me and I am completely grateful and you really helped a lot.

Go-kuro^ sama deshita – You worked very hard today and we pay thee much respect and thanks for your hard efforts, it must have been a lot of hard work but good going and thanks.

Yokei na sewa – its none of your business

Oriko san – He is such a good kid, or she is so well behaved.

Ja ne – see ya, later, adios, ciao, lates, see you on the flipside, peace out

Dewa Mata – until next time, see you later, talk at you soon, peace out

Shioi neko shani no Monogatari

By Yayoi Hisamatsu

Haru no hajime no sawayaka na yoru deshita. Kuroi silk no you na yozora ni takusan no hoshi-tachi ga matataki (twinkling) ate imashita. Cheerful na hoshi no fairy-tachi ga kin no suzu (bell) o ashi ni tsukete odoru to usui kiri (mist) no you na dress no suso (the train) kara kawa no nagare no you ni melody ga umaremashita. Kidotta tsuki no fairy-tachi ga hoshi no fairy-tachi no melody ni awasete harp o kanademashita (play). Yozora wa utsukushii ongaku no kouzui (flood) ni narimashita.
Yagate yozora no melody wa chijou (on earth) nimo shitatari (dripping) nohara (field) no chiisai na ana (hole) no naka de 4 hikime no konko o omou to shite ita okaasan neko no karada o tsutsumimashita. Sono toki, okasan neko no o-naka ga pikutto ugoite koneko no Seany (Shani) ga umaremashita.
Shani wa yozora kara no utsukushii present o karada zentai de kanjite “mi---.” To chiisaku nakimashita. Okaasan neko wa Shani no karada o yasashiku namemashita (lap, lick).
Yozora no ongaku wa itsu no ma ni ka kie, ten mo chijou mo kamisama no seijaku (stillness) no naka e haitte yuki mo shita.
Shani ga umarete 2kai me no haru ga kimashita. Shani wa blue no hitomi (eyes) no utsukushii shiroi neko ni seichou shimashita keredo, Shani wa hoka no neko-tachi no you ni nezumi (mouse) ya mushi (insect) o oikakaeru koto o shimasen deshita. Sore yori Shani wa chiisa na doubutsu-tachi no karada kara afureru sound ni mimi o katamuke jitto shite iru no ga suki deshita.
Shani wa kyou mo nohara no o-ki ni iri no bashou de shizuka ni mimi o katamukete imashita. Shani no mimi no soba o mitsubachi(honey bee) ga awatadashii (in a hurry) oto o tatete tobisatte ikimashita. Hatarakimono no ari-tachi ga Shani no ashimoto o kisokutadashii (regular) rhythm de koushin (parade) shite ikimashita 2hiki no ookii na utsukushii swallowtail ga Shani no mawari o yuuga (elegance, grace) na oto o tsukurinagara toned imashita. Nohara wa ooku no inochi no oto de ippai deshita.
Shani no mimimoto de dareka ga sasayakimashita (whisper), “Ai suru Shani! Kon nichi wa.” Shani no me no mae no poppy no naka ni chiisa na chiisa na fairy ga tatte imasu. Sono chiisa na fairy niwa usui 2mai no hane ga ate karada niwa hikari no ito de anda (under) (crochet) dress o matoi (wear), atama niwa kin ni kagayaku kanmuri o tsukete imashita. Kaze ga kanojo no dress o yurasu (to shake) to dress kara takusan no flower ga umaremashita. Shani o yasashii haru no kaori ga tsutsumimashita.
“Anata wa Dare?” Shani wa bikkuri shite blue no hitomi (eyes) o pachipachi sasete tazunemashita. Fairy wa yasashiku hohoende (smile) kotaemashita.
“Ai suru Shani, Watashi wa haru no fairy no princess. Haru ni umareta subete no inochi ni kamisama no ai o ataeru tame ni hataraite iru no”
“Kamisama no ai yo!!”
“Sou yo! Shani! Subete no minamoto (original) de aru kamisama no ai yo!” Shani, Anata mo takusan itadaite iru deshou.”
“Boku mo?”
“Mochiron yo Shani. Kamisama wa dare hitori o-wasure ni naranai wa! Anata no karada niwa kamisama no utsukushii harmony no melody ga nagarete imasu.”

Sou iutte, fairy no princess wa Shani no hana ni atatakai (heartfelt) shukufuku no kiss o shimashita. Shani wa kiss o sareru to kokoro de honou (flame) ga moeru no o kanjimashita. Sono honou (flame) wa dondon hirogari, Shani no karada o atsuku moyashimashita. Sou shite Shani wa kamisama ga fukaku jibun o ai shite iru koto o kanjite yorokobi de ippai ni narimashita.
Shani wa mawari no inochi-tachi ga kamisama no ai no naka ni ari, subete ga toutoku. Subete ga yasashiku subete ga atatakai to shirimashita. Itsumo anata o mite imasu. Subete o ai shinasai! Soshite, subete no mono no tame ni anata no melody o tsukainasai! Anata ga ai o ookiku sureba suru dake anata no melody wa utsukushii o mashimasu. Tenshi-tachi ga anata no melody ni kouki (noble) na onkai (musical scale) o ataeru deshou.” Shani, Anata ni ooku no shukufuku o...”Fairy no princess wa sou iu to ato iu ma ni hikari no naka e kiete ikimashita.

Shani no mawari o yasashii haru no hikari ga tsutsumikonde imashita.

To be continued…

The Shiroi Neko “Shani”
By Yayoi Hisamatsu
1991 Nen 10 Gatsu 14 nichi
Fukuoka Japan

Japanese vocabulary blaster excerpt

Japanese Vocabulary Blaster #37
Eat, drink and sleep your vocabulary to death
Rinse and Repeat
The Promised 15

1. ichirui – 1st base
2. nirui – 2nd base
3. sanrui – 3rd base
4. honrui – home base
5. yakkyu^ - baseball
6. sakkyoku suru - to compose
7. akubi o suru – to yawn
8. nonbiri – quiet, easy, carefree
9. ninki – popularity
10. ninki ga aru – to be popular
11. abara - ribs
12. haji o shire – shame on you
13. tsuno – horn, antlers
14. kyo^kasho^ - textbook
15. kakujitsu – certainty, reliability

As always,
Do Your Best!
Ganbatte Ne!

March 11, 2008

Awesome tactics for counting in a language other than your own - Japanese

Since older beginners are said to have past the threshold of native pronunciation, once past that point, native pronunciation is unattainable. This may be physiologically true but we can through practice and hard work get close enough to fake a native or two. Once our tongues have hardened or the brain function coordinated with the muscles of the tongue are stuck in our primary language, they say this usually happens around the age of 12-14, then our tongue is no longer moldable and cannot attain the shape to pronounce things.past the point where the native pronunciation line can be drawn, we can draw near unto only a good pronunciation fter learning 1 through 10 On Counting in Japanese: a study strategy

It is rare with so many romance languages being touted around in the USA, with Mexico south of the border and French Canada high on its heels behind us yet close enough to have its influence felt. It is rare to find someone who has actually learned from a friend or a Japanese teacher how to count in Japanese. Americans are starving for some variety in the choices our students our given in the public or private schools. Where in the curriculum does it provide for Japanese, or Korean, or any of the 1000's of languages the world knows.

First learn the first 10 numbers in Japanese.

1 – ichi
2 – ni
3 – san
4 – shi, yon
5 – go
6 - roku
7 –shichi, nana
8 – hachi, ha
9 – kyu, ku
10 – ju, to

At this point, I just want to say that if you feel at all uncomfortable with the numbers up to 10 then stop and just study these numbers for a couple of days before going on. Use every opportunity to use Japanese. Give yourself two hours each day that you only speak Nihongo. If someone asks you what time it is answer in both Japanese and English. Try doing any simple math that you would normally find yourself doing around the house ; any calculations you find yourself in try to remember to keep pace with your goals. The price of your Stater Bros items and even say the total in Japanese as you are waiting to pay. That is a good way to study even if you are not in Japan. Just make sure you can first say from 1 to 10 in Japanese frontwards and backwards with your eyes closed and without any help from some book, however you decide to memorize the numbers The idea behind all of this is to get the locuter speaking more in the target language giving him opportunity to

Now on to the teens. Like most languages, the numbers become compound so 11 in Japanese is actually like saying ten one, ten two, ten three, ten four &tc.
11 – ju ichi
12 – ju ni
13 – ju san
and so forth... I'll let you finish studying the rest of the tens 14-19

Now on to the twenties. Here as in the teens the numbers are compounded so that you will be saying two ten, two ten one, two ten three &tc.
20 –ni ju
21 – ni ju ichi
22 – ni ju ni
and so on...

The 30's through the 90's are also done in this fashion. Once you have recited aloud the numbers 20 to 99 review them all and go on to do the 100's after you learn the word for
30 – san ju
31 - san ju ichi
95 – kyu ju go
99 – kyu ju kyu
100 – hyaku
101 – hyaku ichi
108 – hyaku hachi
197 – hyaku kyu ju nana (shichi)
200 – ni hyaku
300 – sam byaku
400 – yon hyaku
500 –go hyaku
600 – roppyaku
700 – nanahyaku
800 – happyaku
900 – kyuhyaku
1000 – sen
1001 – sen ichi
2000 ni sen
Some of my best spent hours studying Japanese were when I recited to myself the numbers in Japanese from zero to one million, and then back to zero again. Yes it got a little tedious and after a while I would think to myself, “O.K. Enough is enough! I mean gee… to 1 million and back… that is going a little out of the way just to learn some language don’t you think?” Not to a die-hard that really wants to speak the language. I was extremely determined to master Japanese, that is why I recited the numbers from zero to one million and then back again over and over again.
Other things I did which are strategies worth considering was that I would count from 0 to 1 million by 2’s, by 3’s, by 4’s and by 5’s, 6’s, 7’s, 8’s, 9’s, and 10’s. Some numbers seemed for some reason or another harder than the others, so I would concentrate more on the hard ones. I don’t think I tried 11’s but it could produce the same results. It surely stems from basically the same idea. The more your mouth and brain coordinate their efforts in the target languages the better prepared you will be to use them in the real world. So go ahead use you try some of these out until you can say them without hesitation.

Ways to practice counting so as to get better in speaking Japanese, always practice with correct pronunciation and begin slowly and then build up speed and swiftness of speech.

1. Count from 0 to 1 million and go backwards once you arrive at a million to get to zero once again. Again if 1 million seems tough, it would be o.k. to go as far as you can, but maybe stretch yourself a little, a least 99000 or something. You want to get good don’t you?
2. Count up the odd numbers from 0 to 1 million
3. Count up the even numbers from 0 to 1 million
4. do #2 and #3 backwards from 1 million
5. count through your numbers by 3’s, 4’s 5’s etc
6. do long division by saying out loud in Japanese the problem
Here are some nice handy math words that will give you hours of word play:
To add – tasu
To divide – waru
To multiply -kakeru
To subtract – hiku

I don’t think it sinks into your being until you’ve actually recited the numbers from zero to one million (1,000,000) a couple of times through without hesitation and eventually to do it without even thinking about it. That is one of the secrets of fluency. It sprouts from one’s ability to think in the target language. If you catch yourself thinking in the target language that is a good sign; if you catch yourself dreaming in the target language you have reached bliss, SLA bliss. You are heading towards fluency. I got to a point where my dreams would be in Japanese and it didn’t matter who or what type of people were in my dreams, everybody spoke in Japanese. I remember my mom and dad who aren’t too familiar with the Japanese language, but in my dreams were conversing with me full on like natives themselves. So what is the point of all this? The point is akin to the old adage,’when in Rome do as the Romans do’.
The more one thinks in the target language the more apt they are to acquire the language. Lets face it there is no quick road to fluency except hard work, goal oriented study, persistent practice and an iron will coupled with an abundance of motivation. I hope this little lesson won’t discourage anyone about learning languages. Because there will be some that are too lazy start the training, their motivation will be sub par for their needs, and thus they will not make it to fluency. But those who persevere and but instead will inspire people to go for it, even though the road to fluency isn’t yellow nor bricked. These are things that I know of that will enable an SL learner how to speak in a foreign tongue and bring them closer to near perfect fluency.

To intend to verb tsumori Japanese Grammar

Japanese Language Mastery in 130 modernized lessons.
Ghetto Grammar Lesson #115 – The Japanese bunpo of Intentions

In Japanese it is easy to construct sentences that tell others your intentions. To say that you intend on doing something in Japanese, put a verb in either baseIII or baseI (i.e. iku or ikanai) and add tsumori desu. As long as the locutor has a handle on the pronunciation of the tsu syllable (see pronunciation tips #13), then his/her spoken intentions will also be easily understood. Tsumori is the word we use when we want to show an intention. Putting tsumoru into baseII[1] gives you tsumori.
We can understand more about the bunpo of intentions (today’s grammar principle) by taking a closer look at the meaning of the word tsumori and/or its etymology. Of course don’t neglect to listen to your surroundings especially when you are blessed with an immersive environment. If you are not already in Japan, try listening for words you have learned via Japanese T.V. or from any other means to feel the way in which those words are used by native Japanese speakers. Paying attention to how it is used in the real world. Tsumoru is the verb to accumulate or to be piled or stacked up. Also note that tsumeru means to stuff, pack, or cram, and although the kanji is not exactly the same, they both seem to have stemmed from a common source. Tsumori is also related to the widely used common term tsumaranai which is the word for something that is worthless or trivial or something that is not worth your time worrying about.

Ghetto Grammar Lesson #115 – Intend to verb

-intend to + verb
verb (Base III) + tsumori
-no intention to + verb
verb (Base I) + tsumori
You must add the polite form of the verb to be (de aru) after tsumori to show politeness as well as to show whether the intention was a past or present, negative or positive intention. A few examples will show you how to use this bunpo principle.

Practice Tip – Take all the Japanese verbs you know and put them into the tsumori bunpo. Have fun with words like fart, choke, drown, dumpster dive etc. Remember Ghetto Grammar is not only useful, its fun. Just be careful not to get too ghetto and always use the polite form for verbs. Steer clear of anything plain form or lower. ex.1 - I intend to win.
- Watakushi wa katsu tsumori desu.

ex.2 - He intends to speak with her.
- Kare wa kanojo to hanasu tsumori desu.

ex.3 - I don't intend to go.
- Ikanai tsumori desu. (Rarely used)

ex.3a - I have no intentions to go.
- Iku tsumori wa nai desu. (More frequently)
- Iku tsumori wa arimasen. (More polite)

ex.4 - It was my intention to do the dishes.
- Sara o arau tsumori deshita.

ex.4a - I had intended to go
- Iku tsumori deshita.

Most often literal translations of Japanese to English rarely come out in a comprehensible fashion.They are usually so far from what is really being said that the meaning comes out all wrong. In studying a language it is sometime good, however, to learn about word etymology if possible. Try listening for other uses of the same term. By getting use to hearing a certain phrase more than one way, you are setting the stage for solid language acquisition. In our tsumori bunpo we would want to know how meanings would affect our usage. Since tsumoru means to accumulate, to be piled or to be stacked up, when we literally translate example 1 above it becomes something like this - I have accumulated much the act of winning, Or, -I have a lot of winning put aside, the winning is all piled up over there. I hope you get my point here. It may sound a little wacky but remember… this is ‘ghetto’ grammar baby! Intentions are like a stack of things piled so high that the shear weight of it gives verbs and our ghetto grammar principles intentional potential.

This lesson brought to you by Makurasuki Sensei, Brett McCluskey Wishing all the best in your endeavors toward improving your Japanese. Ganbatte ne! Do your Best! Ja Mata Kondo! If you found this article helpful and want to really get good at Japanese or any language for that matter look for my articles at and also check out for the best dictionary in the galaxy.

Go Daddy $1.99 Domains

[1] For more about how verbs are put into bases in Japanese see

March 7, 2008

How to say goodbye in Japanese

Ghetto Grammar supplement #95
How to say good bye in Japanese

There are many different ways to say goodbye in English. Same in Japanese, there are many different ways of saying sayo^nara. It’s strange because of all the expressions used by the Japanese, which could be considered equivalent ways of the saying the same thing, phrase matches etc., for the understanding communication that I am leaving now and will not see you for a while. That is to say goodbye;

I would do a literal translation of the phrase and compare with modern day terminology to determine a more equivalent terminology to express some same meaningful word. Sayo^nara has meaning of So long for a long time, or farewell for a couple of seasons. Sayo^nara is the ancient form and way of saying the so yu form of the a yu ko yu etc. Because A sayo^ de gozaimasu would be the super equivalent of the honorific form of the same phrase as above the In the time I have spent in Japan only on rare occasions(and I mean super rare occasions, {besides Karaoke of course}), have I ever heard the traditional term for goodbye, ‘sayonara’.
Sayo^nara differs from English’s goodbye in a direct translation also because sayo^ is to say “so” versus the English’s term good;The conditional subject marker “nara” has not changed its shape since around 600 A.D. (western reckoning). For nara is still nara of modern Japanese and still functions the same way. However the sayo^ part is much older and more traditionally Japnanese.

The words sayonara and goodbye both have a y in them. That in itself could be a coincidence but I think it proves that at some point in our languages past, but they have similiarities too.
I also remember being a kid in an American elementary school growing up in Southern California and pretending to be asian, I would pull my eyes to make them appear slanted and having the look of an oriental person I would go around saying A so, A so, A so. It wasn’t until I actually visited Japan, that I realized that somehow the phrase or nuance given from the words A so is actually meaningful in the same way as it is mocked. When the Japanese inquire, “A so …?”, they are implying , “Is that right?”, or, “. . . is that so?” It is a short abbreviated way of saying the complete phrase of , “A so^ desu ka? Desu ka is, as you know, is the question mark phrase ending form of the verb, to be, and so^ is of the form –(a yu) , (ko^ yu) , and (so^ yu ), where a – placement over there, ko^ is placement over here and so^ yu is placement there.
So the main point I’m trying to make is, and hopefully show some real life examples of how we say goodbye in both languages.
In English we might say something like the following to signal to another that we are leaving for now and may or may not see them at some point in the future:
Ways of saying – goodbye-- in English
Later dude!
See ya (spoken best when chewed, as in bubble-gum)
See ya later @lligator!
Late my Peeps!
Peace Out!!
Adios - We even say adios taken from the Spanish
If we were elegant we might periventure say
Adieux (…to you and you and you) with a French nasality but we are talking English here, and modern tech English at that. . .
So Long…
Farewell, old chap…
Hit the road! Jack! And don’t you come back no more no more no more
Till next time (…America) gross – Maury P.
Til’ we meet again…
Bye now…
B’ Bye because goodbye takes too long to say anyway.
You say Hello but I say b’bye
Later on Holmes depending on whether you are of latin or Spanish, Conquistadores, Azteca, or Mayan descent
I’m Outta’ here
I’m Splittin’
Tell ‘so and so’ I said hi!
If you all will excuse me, I surely must get going.
Thanks for your hospitality.
Come along now.
See you on the flipside…
Catcha tomorrow
Til den –
I Ketchup wif y’all later ,or, (on the flipside.)
Get outta here
Move it or lose it.
Good Bye

Instead of going back through this great list of ways to say good-bye in English I’m just going to throw out at you instead some similar types of ways to say sayo^nara In Japanese, because languages don’t grow from the alphabet or the symbolic transference of meaning to ink, or written forms of communication; but that it comes from the environment in which the communicators find themselves. So although very similar type ways of saying goodbye exist, they are only rough estimations, playing themselves like a tennis ball bounced from racket to racket, volleying to and fro acting as a feedback mechanism upon which colloquial speech thrives in real time with real meanings backing these distinct phrases and the words which compose them in both languages.

Ways of saying Sayo^nara in Japanese
1. ja ne!
2. ja mata!
3. ja mata ne!
4. Sore Dewa!
5. Go- Chiso Sama Deshita
6. Dewa Mata!
7. Kashikomarimashita
8. Hai Wakarimashita
9. Shitsurei Shimasu
10. Mata O- tanoshimi ni shite imasu
11. Gokuro^ sama deshita
12. Shitsurei Itashimasu
13. Ja mata kondo!
14. Ii desu
15. Kekko Desu
16. Sayo na
17. Kondo ne!
18. Sono toki ni ne!
19. H~~~~ai
20. Wakatta
21. Bow – lowering of the head and exiting
22. Osu
23. Heikai itashimasu
24. Sore ja!
25. Goo buy
26. Dete ike!
27. ii kara
28. ki o tsukete ne
29. buy buy as in you say hello but I say ba bye

And that’s a rap, stay tuned for more crazy linguistics, as the world of languages shrinks around us merging as it may into one eventual world tongue.
As always,
Ganbatte Ne! Do your Best
Makurasuki Sensei
Brett McCluskey

March 4, 2008

Japanese Double Consonants

Table 1 - The 46 Syllables of the Japanese Syllabary (romanized)
a ka sa ta na ha ma ra ya wa n
i ki shi chi ni hi mi ri
u ku su tsu nu fu mu ru yu
e ke se te ne he me re
o ko so to no ho mo ro yo wo

あ か さ た な は ま ら や わ ん
い き し ち に ひ み り
う く す つ ぬ ふ む る ゆ
え け せ て ね へ め れ
お こ そ と の ほ も ろ よ を

The above are the 46 syllables of the Japanese Syllabary. Individually they are called mora. Plurally they are called morae. One mora in particular is the focus of this article. The Tsu mora.
When the tsu syllable is added before the consonants k,p, and t, a hardened double consonant sound is produced. You spit out the words Like the sound of the doubled k in bookkeeper, adding the syllable tsu to ka, ki, ku, ke, ko . This special pronunciation of the doubled consonant is denoted by lowered case or subscript tsu in either hiragana or katakana. Some examples are as follows:

1. makka – deep red
2. jikken – experiment or test
3. shuppan – publish , shuppatsu – departure
4. zettai – suredly, absoluteness
5. tokkyo – not the city toukyou which has the elongated
6. happi – the English word happy in katakana

Note the use of the doubled consonant sound in Japanese is indicated by a lower case tsu followed by the doubled consonant sound.

When n is not connected to a vowel as in the very last syllable of the Japanese syllabary which in fact is just n or , it is like a syllable unto itself. It receives a full count if language were a music it would receive the same amount of time that a 2 lettered syllable receives., and is denoted by the apostrophe ‘. For example:
1. Kin’en this is Japanese for no smoking not kinen or the word for anniversary.
so it has 4 syllables and the word for anniversary has 3.

To say the ra ri ru re ro line of the syllabary say first in English eddy then make sure the tip of your tongue is touching delicately behind the upper front teeth. If you say it like this you come close to a true pronunciation of the Japanese word for collar, or eri.

To learn more haya ike!

Ja mata kondo!

As always,
Ganbatte ne! Do your best!
Makurasuki Sensei
Technorati Profile

March 1, 2008

1st set of Japanese verbs

100 Japanese Verbs Romaji English
園芸する engei suru to be amused
なかす nakasu to cause to cry
支持する shitai suru to expect
うごかす ugokasu to physically move something
うごく ugoku to move, to make motion or movement
そなえる to prepare, to provide
穂門する senmon suru sen is wrong
年とる toshi o toru to age
混乱する konran suru to be confusing
頼る tayoru to rely, to depend
区別する kubetsu suru to separate, to distinguish
結婚する kekkon suru to marry
とこにすく toko ni suku old way of saying to go to bed
あずける azukeru same as azukaru intrasitive
拒む ayumu to apologize
あわれる awareru to appear
たずねる tazuneru to ask
うかがう ukagau to ask, or visit
たたかう tatakau to attack
できる dekiru to be able, can
もしあげる moshiageru to be called
みちる michiru to be filled with
込む fukumu to be included
欠く fuku to be insufficient, to lack
暴れる abareru to be jittery unstable, to act up
節足する fusoku suru to be unsatisfactory, to be not enough
しんじる shinjiru to believe
炊く fuku to blow
増す fukuramasu to blow up
ふかす fukasu to blow up (baloon)
励ます fukuramasu to blow up(balloon) to fill up with
かりる kariru to borrow
かう kau to buy
はこぶ hakobu to carry
祝う iwau to celebrate
変化する henka suru to change shape, transform
かえる kaeru to change, to return
閉める shimeru to close
くらべる kuraberu to compare
文句する monku suru to complain
確かめる tashikameru to confirm
正す tadasu to correct
なく naku to cry
減る heru to decrease
希望する kibou suru to desire
うつす utsusu to develop( film), to get on print
死ぬ shinu to die
握る horu to dig
みわける miwakeru to distinguish, tell apart
わる waru to divide, to break in half