Sunday, November 25, 2007

Family Tree in Japanese

When you introduce yourself in Japanese, introducing your family might be necessary. Let’s look at a simple family tree in Japanese. You are “Watashi”.

Here is usuful expressions.

I have a elder broterh.
→ (Watashi ni wa) Ani ga imasu. /(私には)がいます。

I have a elder sister and younger brother.
→ (Watashi ni wa) Ane to Otouto ga imasu. / (私には)がいます。

How many brothers/sisters do you have?

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Letter Art

Now, here is a question for you. How can you see this Japanese word?


You may see this person is bowling. Probably, it is easier to recognize it like this.

ぷ。 ...。  ......。 iiii

ぷ is just one of Hiragana letter in Japanese (it sounds "Pu"), but it looks like something different when you see it from another angle. Here is some arrangment of ぷ。

ぷ。 ぷ。 ぷ。

3 people are bowling at the same time.


This is bowling with many pins.

These are very difficult to recognize this at first for native Japanese

because they see it only as a letter.

Here is a question for you.

These are not Japanese letters but alphabet and mark. How can you see it?


Sunday, November 11, 2007

Hug Me Please!

Recently, I just see many people who are holding a sign which says “Free Hugs” at the really crowded place or park in Japan. I felt really weird when I saw it for the first time because I had no idea what the purpose of it.

The origin of Free Hug is from the states in 2001. Jason Hunter walked along Miami with the sign after his mother’s dead. In 2004, Juan Mann from Australia started to Free Hug Campaign, and his achievement was recorded, broadcast on You tube, and then Free Hugs became famous.

A photo from Akihabara.

The sign says Free Hugs in Japanese.

The purpose of Free Hugs is to share happiness and sadness with people you don’t know; however, since hug is not common custom, or the word, “Hug” is not well-known in Japan, it seems to be difficult to get a hug from strangers or passengers.

Here is video from You tube. Free Hugs in Japan.

Do you see this campaign in your country? Have you ever given hug? I have never hugged with people who is holding the sign.

*This is not appropriate on this blog, but I want information about NY. I'm going there at the end of this month. I want to know cool places or must-visit places in NY. I hope to get some from you guys. Thanks!

Saturday, November 03, 2007

Moshi Moshi?

When you call on the phone, how do you say in your country? In Japan, we say “もしもし(Moshi Moshi)” at the beginning like “Hello” in English.

At the very beginning of phone development in Japan, people used to say “おいおい(Oi Oi)” instead of Moshi Moshi. In 1890, telephone switching was stated in Japan. Since then, telephone operators started to use Moshi Moshi which is written as 申し申し in Kanji and it means “I’m going to say.”

Here is another tip. In business scene, it is better not to say Moshi Moshi. You start the conversation without Moshi Moshi. Only when you cannot hear well, you can use Moshi Moshi.

Do you have any special word for the beginning of phone conversation in your country?