Your 358-Word Mini Japanese Culture Lesson

Unlike English, Japanese isn’t a language that puts emphasis on using pronouns. For example, an English-speaker would find it imperative to denote whose sweater they were using or that they themselves like cheese but a Japanese speaker would simply say: “using sweater” or “like cheese” because the “who” in both cases is, somehow, implied. Nonetheless, […]

Marco … Momo ….

Overheard while walking through my neighborhood on this bright, clear winter day; a blissful, singsong conversation between a small, pig-tailed girl in a bike basket and her young, giddy mother as they rode down the street. Mama-san: Momo! Momo: Naniiiiiiiii? Mama-san: Momo-chan! Momo: Naniiiiiii? Mama-san: Momo! Momo: Naniiiiiiii? And the happy pair continued to chant, […]

Taught by the Tune of the Hick’ry Stick

There are things you learn so well that they become ingrained – even in a culture that isn’t your own. In the two years I’ve lived in Japan, I now know without a doubt that “ちょっと待ってね,” means “wait a little bit, okay?” “大丈夫?” means “You okay?” and “できた!” means “I was able to do it!” […]