I’ve been busy!!! So, as I was looking back on some of my earlier posts, I had made a few observations of discoveries I’d made about Japanese, but they got lost in the noise of my emo angst and whining. So I decided that it would make sense to make
While I was doing research for another project I was doing, I went down a bit of a rabbithole. I was trying to explain (and make sure I understood) the uses of voiced vs. unvoiced consonants. I found a bunch of interesting things. One was that there are some kana
I tend to annoy my coworkers with discussions of Japanese and all things Japan. Some of them find it interesting. Some just recite “press 1 for English”. But at the end of the day, the discussions can be interesting at times. One of my coworkers made the statement that “the
My first true exposure to Japanese language was Rosetta Stone. In fact, I remember the first word I ever learned: otokonoko. I became very disillusioned with Rosetta Stone very quickly, and decided that it wasn’t worth it, particularly for the price. But lately I’ve been studying the kanken books. You
Let me preface this by saying: this is only a thought experiment. I have no illusions that this will ever happen. I’m not even seriously proposing it. But I do like to think about these kinds of things. So, that said, how would I redo Japanese if I were God?
There are two pillars to success when learning any language: vocabulary and grammar. The thing about them is, they are actually rather orthogonal to each other. Even in Japanese, as long as you learn the dictionary form (or to some degree even the polite form of the word) you don’t
Western people know many Japanese place names. Osaka, Tokyo, and even for more unsavory reasons, Hiroshima, Nagasaki… But what many western people don’t know is that these are actually very ordinary names in Japanese. Hiroshima, for example, means “Wide Island”, and Tokyo means “Capital City” (or something similar). The fact
As I have been learning Japanese, one observation keeps coming to mind, one I can’t shake: Japanese is incredible, amazingly, spectacularly biased against beginners. What I mean is this: when you start learning Japanese, there is a hump. The hump seems almost insurmountable. You have to learn an entirely new
As all of the symbols in Japanese start coalescing into individual meanings and pronunciations, I can’t help but feel a sense of loss. I mean, there are tons of websites out there breathlessly proclaiming how cool Japanese is, giving you tips on learning different phrases and words, grammar points, etc.
I have been learning Japanese now for a little over a year. One the one hand, I know more than I did. I can put together basic sentences, I know probably a thousand words (a hodgepodge of adjectives, nouns, verbs, and things I picked up from variety shows and songs),