|it's good for me, it's good for me
||[Feb. 18th, 2008|06:37 pm]
"Watashi wa nihongo ga sikoshi wakarimas."
"Ohhhh god. I don't think I can do this."
"I can say like two sentences, Lindsey. And the other one is 'Watashi wa Amerikajin desu.' And they're like 'no kidding.'"
"It's okay! We're going to want to say a lot of 'Anatawa eigo ga wakarimas-ka?' And they'll be like 'Iye.' Or 'Hai!' But we'll be like 'Ohaiyo gozaimas!'"
"I'll be against the wall in the fetal position."
"Speaking of fetal position," *asks a CSS question*
"Oh! You're aware of the 'has layout' concept?"
"The what now?"
"Oh!" *talks CSS for ten minutes*
"There, see? You're brilliant and you can handle this. Now. The verbs don't have too many different endings, as far as I can tell. And no tones. And you're like "-ka?" on the verb to make a sentence a yes/no question, and--"
in the end, you'll be fine, as long as you remember "sumimasen", which is literally "it should not have been allowed to happen" but is practically an all purpose utility word that means everything a non-japanese-speaking visitor should be expressing.
also, i have a couple conversation-oriented japanese books and cds, if you want to borrow them.
Thank you! Yes, I'd like to borrow. I am terrible at this.
Doin' the things we think we cannot do, and all. You know.
I'll bring the CDs that Rob gave me too :)
*laughs* Faaaantastic, thanks! I had no idea what it meant literally...
This just came up today. I'm wondering what your source is for the "it should not have been allowed to happen" transliteration. From what I can tell, it's something more like "it is not resolved", perhaps as in "I haven't yet repaid you for the kindness you've done me."
Hmmm, taking a phrase book that has both Japanese and english is a good idea. You can point to phrases in case you get into trouble. The mainland Japanese seem to be able to read English fairly well, so having a notebook to write questions on and show people would also help.
You also don't need to use watashi, boku, ore ware, or any other pronouns. Just say, "nihongo ga wakarimasen" and that's fine. For the second sentence, "Americajin desu" and pointing at yourselves is perfectly OK and better for speaking.
Just remember to have fun! Millions of tourists who speak no Japanese at all enjoy Japan and have a great and safe time.
Plus, you can always call me if you get into trouble. I live here, remember?