An Odd Day In Japan
Episode 1: Arrival
Episode 2: New Home
Episode 3: Mount Fuji
Episode 4: Announcement
Episode 5: Fireworks
Episode 6: Maid Cafe
Episode 7: Horror?
Episode 8: Japanese?
Episode 9: Burglar
Episode 10: Fuji-San
The Odd Day In Japan series has concluded. If you enjoyed it, leave your comments below!
Manga artist, overseas culture lover, and wants to show all the fun and strange origins of the Japanese language.
On another note, I do wonder whether, given it’s purpose, the translation wouldn’t work better being translated a little more literally rather than “localized”?
And is it just me, or shouldn’t the 外人 interested in being polite in 日本 start by choosing a different first person pronoun?
I think using おれ is appropriate in this case, as it seems he is talking/thinking to himself. You wouldn’t really refer to yourself with わたくし if no one else is around. Unless you’re practicing a speech or something like that.
Oh, I’m not saying he committed any “politeness illegality” in that scene… It just strikes me as a potentially bad habit… (and it’s not like going all the way to わたくし is the only alternative)
I guess seeing a 外人 using 俺 just goes against everything I heard about how rough the word is, so much so that I think I’d be pretty scared of actually going and using it in 日本…
Though right now I wish I had some 日本人 lying around on whom to test the effect of the word… :P
Japanese men use おれ quite often. My husband does all the time.
Yeah, it’s definitely a word to use with caution, I think. I only used it with people I knew very well when I was in Japan.
I also use it a lot. While I would never use it at work, with people I just met or don’t know well, or people a good deal older than me, I use it all the time with friends. Anything else would feel weird (trust me, 僕 feels strange when you are talking among friends).
There is a slight age issue. The older you are (think 40s +), the less likely you are to use 俺, and the more likely you are to use 僕.
Though in casual chats with friends, there is no set rule. There are also young guys who use 僕. It just presents a slightly different image of yourself.
I was really worried about this. I’m reading a lot of Fruits Basket and listening to the Pokémon series. In both, the male characters almost always use 俺. Even Yuki, the 王子様, uses it instead of 僕. And they use that when talking to girls or boys, there’s no difference.
Shigure, the older one, 俺, and in that document with the 100 most common anime words there was a part saying that 僕 is male and 俺 is more “macho”, to be used only between young men.
Thanks for this clarification. So I can use 俺 normally, right?
I’ve always felt unsure of which to use too. Generally when thinking to myself in Japanese I will use 俺 and have occasionally used it on Lang8 entries as a way of experimenting with different styles. However in most of the conversations I’ve ever had I’ve defaulted to 僕 out of fear of being inappropriate.
Also I tend to notice in media characters will more often stick exclusively to one pronoun as a way of representing their personality type and very rarely vary. It’s very noticeable in things like 鋼の練金術師 where the Ed uses オレ to denote his hot headedness whilst Al uses ボク to show how he’s the calmer more reasonable sibling, or in ガンダムシード where Kira’s use of 僕 shows his (initial) innocent perspective. There are also odd examples like 海賊戦隊ゴーカイジャー where Gai speaks to his 先輩 rangers in 敬語 yet still uses 俺.
俺 is fine to use amongst friends, but with teachers and those with a clear age divide, use 僕. Trust me, your friends aren’t going to bat an eyelid when they hear 俺. If a guy uses 俺 around you too, this is a pretty good indicator they are comfortable enough with you that you can use it too.
I dig it!
This is funny! I love this character. I’m looking forward to seeing more adventures.
He he this is great, keep it coming!
On the note of pronouns, I used 僕 before I went to Japan because my Japanese teacher was an おばあさん who thought it was a dirty word. When I got to my high school on exchange, however, I noticed pretty much every single guy was using 俺. So, out of conforming, I decided to start using that as well. From there, it took my a while to find the balance of when to change up between the two, but while I occasionally slip up, I can transition between my two styles well.
I thought recently that 僕 does suit my English personality more, so I decided to try using it during conversations with friends. It feels so freaking weird that I had to switch back to 俺, even though I concede I’ll eventually probably transition to 僕. I don’t want to be in my fifties and still using 俺. I’m thinking when I become a father I’ll try and make the switch. It’s just about growing up.
From my husband’s perspective:
Himself Present Day – Doesn’t really use; If he worked for a Japanese company, he’d use it with his boss, and perhaps his co-workers depending on who they are
Himself in his 50s – Imagines using more
Casually – Used by people who are calm and quiet (おとなしい); He has friends who will use 僕 with their friends; Normal, not showing manliness; Expressed that he wouldn’t use 僕 with friends because it doesn’t show his manliness
Himself Present Day – Socializing with older people; At church
So perhaps for people who generally use 俺 with friends, using 僕 in more formal occasions gives the impression to others that you are behaved.
I can imagine people just naturally おとなしい and showing that by their use of 僕 even in casual settings. I guess you can really get an idea of a person’s personality that way.
Casually – Shows manliness
Himself Present Day – Uses with his friends and family
Himself in his 50s – Still imagines himself using
I don’t know if this helps anyone. I just thought it was interesting how 情暖 expressed he would like to use 僕 more or at least switch to it when he becomes a father so it might help to get some input from a Japanese man.
Thank you for the input, Rachel. That’s pretty interesting.
When I used 僕 around my guy friends, I felt pretty odd, considering they constantly used 俺. Needless to say, I switched back pretty quickly. When you said, “So perhaps for people who generally use 俺 with friends, using 僕 in more formal occasions gives the impression to others that you are behaved”, that definitely struck a bell. I use it with teachers, my host grandmother, and older people in general. I also use it when I am typing in Japanese for an unknown audience (like on a website or whatever). It’s definitely deliberate, but I can’t bring myself to say it with my friends.
I was also talking to someone on Lang-8 and the use of 俺 is a bit psychological because Japanese boys use it to express manliness and dominance over their fellow guys. It’s like a “No, I’m the most 俺 of all.” And, hey, the person who I have a crush on says barely any university guys use 僕, so I’ll be using 俺 around her.（笑）
In fact, as far as formality, 僕 is the highest I generally go. I’ve used 私 only a couple times (I can count on one hand), and once with a host family when they expected me to use it. It feels very formal to me, which is not really my personality, so I shirk at the thought of having to use it.
I guess the reason why I said I’d switch to 僕 when I am a father is tied into the type of image I want to portray as a father. That, plus by the time I’m that age, I’m not sure how much regular contact I’ll be with my various university friends. It’s a more of a wait-and-see kind of thing, but I also see it as growing up in my use of the language (as odd as that my sound). Most of the elegant speakers I know use 僕.
With younger people you just meet it seems to be more dicey; some won’t care if you use 俺, but they might be surprised if you use お前 just in a casual way. Learnt my lesson on the latter to hold out a bit longer before using it, but younger people don’t seem to care about all those social conventions if they are around each other and just stick with their guns.
…Someone should write a PhD on Japanese pronouns.
I don`t understand why every japanese learner care so much about the 僕, 俺 and whatever. They are just words like any others, you see them, you imitate, you use them, end of the story.
If you use 俺 in front of a granny, then prepare to be looked at funny. I’ve reached to point where it’s no longer an issue and I switch when the situation needs it. It can also help display your personality, which is why so many people spend time fretting and over it. Different politeness levels factor into it too. I generally don’t think about it a great deal, but if we’re on the topic, I have lots of feelings toward it.
I will say that learners seem to worry about when to you 俺 too much or if people will be offended if it is used amongst friends.
Nah, it’s not like the world is going to end just because you said 俺 to the oldie. There’s much more than 俺s situations who can and will make you look funny, you just learn with them and move along. You’re right about the learners those dudes freak out for anything
“Nah, it’s not like the world is going to end just because you said 俺 to the oldie.”
No, but in many situations fixing the damage done by insulting someone is far more trouble than getting it right in the first place would be, and sometimes the お婆さん might be someone with actual influence over you.
“You’re right about the learners those dudes freak out for anything.”
You seem to have a very low threshold for what constitutes “freaking out”.
This was great! Surprisingly I understood enough of it to get a general idea of what was going on(and the pictures helped with that, obviously). But I could read enough of it that even without the pictures I wouldn’t be totally lost.
Me 2, let’s celebrate our awesomeness with a imaginary high five
*I raise my left hand*
*I high five you*
It’s cheesy, but in a good way! It was fun.
Hahaha! The nicest thing is that I understood half of what was in the Japanese version. This is so motivating, since I’ve been studying for less than three months.
面白いwww^ – ^
I’ve been meaning to say that I’m enjoying this series! This one in particular stuck a chord… I could kind of see myself doing this :) Contents aside, I appreciate the level this is pitched at. I haven’t known every word, but so far I’ve understood every strip without having to resort to the English. It’s great to be able to get a smile from something entirely in Japanese. Keep them coming!
(BTW, sorry if I missed this in previous comments, but does our protagonist have a name?)
So far the main character’s name has not been revealed yet.
Is it ゴ? :)
It’s being a nice experience, as I’ve been going through RTK to see how the understanding gets better even if only with Kanjis, without more vocabulary.
Haha, I thought the “I have some fireworks at my house” line would be like the good old “want to come see my stamp collection?” pickup line, so I have to say I’m a bit dissapointed at the ending :P
Hehe I thought the same thing – pickup line!
“I have a Bengal fire in my bedroom!”
On a side note, had to use translation for the last frame.
It is a fairly complex word!
With that sweet and innocent face?!
One more person here, who thought it was a pickup line…
Yep, totally thought it was a pickup line.
Haha, I always enjoy these. Keep it up!
Understand everything,but I don’t understand why あり is used?
And also アヒカに来たらメイド喫茶だよね. Do you mean “if you go to X you do/go X for sure”?
I like these posts and I think it’s funny how he always get troubles ^^
I really enjoy reading these comics. Great concept, great source of intermediate-level reading materials.
…I just wish the punchline in this particular episode didn’t rely on a “comical” moment of homophobic panic.
I don’t think this was intended as homophobic panic. I think it was more of a strange shock moment. Maid cafes are already strange enough, and having an entire maid cafe full of cross dressers just takes that strange up a few notches.
This is great!
that was great haha
Haha, I can’t wait to play Final Fantasy XV: Ultra Mega Stick Final Reality Angry Dream, it’s gonna be awesome!
Hah, that’s really good :)