Take the 2-minute tour ×
Japanese Language Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for students, teachers, and linguists wanting to discuss the finer points of the Japanese language. It's 100% free, no registration required.

I'm having trouble expressing the concept of "not often enough". The most basic way to say "often" is よく, but I think there's a problem in putting qualifiers on this word. For instance, expressing "more often" with もっとよく would be unnatural and/or wrong.

Here are two examples from The Jim Breen dictionary for the word [頻]{ひん}[繁]{ぱん} that answer part of my question. This expresses a "more often" concept:

メアリーは、もっと頻繁に母親を手伝うと約束した。
Mary promised her mother that she would help her more often.

This is almost to the point of expressing a degree of frequency, but I feel like it comes up short for what I'm grasping for:

できるだけ頻繁に辞書を引きなさい。
Refer to the dictionary as often as possible.

How would you say "not often enough"? I'm tempted to try something like 頻繁さが足りない, but that has no Google results so it's probably wrong. Would it be acceptable to use 頻度 instead? Let's say I wanted to say "I don't get updates often enough" or something like that. What are the best ways to express this type of thought?

share|improve this question
    
btw, I don't know why the interface won't let me insert a link (see dictionary link), but it just won't work for some reason. –  AlanSE Apr 13 '12 at 19:57
    
Probably it would help if you ask with context rather than just for the phrase "not often enough". It could be that the best way to say it is to use a different structure. –  sawa Apr 14 '12 at 0:52
    
@sawa For context, I would just change that statement about Mary to "Mary didn't help out enough". Even though it seems really simple, I'm at a loss for how to form that, and I'm not sure if it would even use the same words and general structure here. –  AlanSE Apr 14 '12 at 1:05
2  
I think your mistake suggests an important point, and that is what I was trying to tell you in the previous comment. Perhaps, in that case, the frequency does not matter, so you subconsciously wrote an English sentence without using the word "often". The same thing with Japanese. Unless you think of a context where the frequency really matters rather than just "a general amount", the most natural way to say it in Japanese is to not particularly mention the frequency but just say "(not) enough". –  sawa Apr 14 '12 at 1:56
5  
We'd just say あまり~~しない, no? –  Choko Apr 14 '12 at 6:11

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.