Topics related to finding a phrase that fits a given context or meaning.

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4
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4answers
518 views

Japanese equivalent of “I identify as X”

I'm looking for a way to express the feeling that sometimes comes up when the way you feel about yourself contrasts with surface-level observations about you. In English we have the "identify as" ...
3
votes
1answer
54 views

Is “ランタイム時” (runtime-time) acceptable?

I'm writing a manual, and needed to say something to the effect of "at runtime", as in "Some program debugging can only be performed (or is more efficient or accurate when performed) at runtime." (...
2
votes
1answer
71 views

Sei Sei Sei chant

I just finished the manga, Goodnight Punpun Vol. 1 and I noticed several occasions within the work where a character crossed their arms and chanted "Sei". Could someone tell me the meaning of this ...
13
votes
3answers
733 views

How to say to “persuade into doing something”?

I am looking for a Japanese phrase or an idiom which could be used to describe a situation in which a person A persuades person B into doing something, not required for the person B, but beneficial to ...
5
votes
3answers
684 views

How to say “One day at a time” in romaji

Good Evening, I'm a beginner in Japanese and stack exchange. I'm probably going to ask you all very simple and phrase based questions, so I am happy to give any points or perks of appreciation that I ...
1
vote
1answer
68 views

Master suppression techniques

"Master suppression techniques" also known as "domination techniques" are defined as "ways to indirectly suppress and humiliate opponents". Master suppression techniques are defined as strategies ...
2
votes
1answer
108 views

Does 「私は緊張してです私の日本語学習ついて」 read properly?

I'm trying to say, "I'm nervous about learning Japanese" or "I'm nervous about my Japanese learning." Does 「私は緊張してです私の日本語学習ついて」 communicate that? If not, how should I communicate it?
7
votes
4answers
12k views

Question about supposedly a Japanese proverb

I came across to this sentence: The Japanese say you have three faces. The first face, you show to the world. The second face, you show to your close friends, and your family. The third face, ...
9
votes
1answer
5k views

What is usually written at the end of a slides presentation to imply “Thanks for listening”?

I've seen this phrase a couple of times but couldn't read the Kanji so I don't remember it. Otherwise, what phrase would be good to include in the last slide to imply "Thanks for listening!"? For ...
3
votes
2answers
112 views

How do you say “a light read”?

What is a good way to say that a book is a light read? By that I mean writing that is basically created for entertainment, doesn't contain much drama and isn't particularly thought-provoking. ...
7
votes
2answers
161 views

How to say “100% virus free”?

In English we put the following phrases below software we want customers to download to put their mind at ease (for example, a neat weather app). ✓100% virus free ✓Contains no malware ✓Contains no ...
4
votes
2answers
101 views

How to say “plunge into (studies)”?

Please, could you help me to translate the phrase in bold in the following sentence? I have plunged into my studies.
4
votes
2answers
95 views

Natural way to ask what project/work someone has been doing lately

What is a natural way or ways to ask about what project(s) or work someone is doing lately at a job? In English I'd say: So what project have you been working on lately? So what have you been ...
5
votes
2answers
196 views

How to ask someone to repeat what they said [duplicate]

A recurring problem I have in Japanese dialogue is when I can't quite hear what someone said, attempt to ask them something to the effect of "excuse me?" or "what was that?" only for them to rephrase ...
2
votes
2answers
262 views

Can “yee ka ka desu ka” mean “how are you?”

I was learning Japanese a few years ago and a phrase I picked up (I think from the Pimsleur program) was "Yee ka ka desu ka" (or maybe the "Yee" was written as "ii" to pronounce as a short form of "ee"...
13
votes
3answers
2k views

“Strike while the iron is hot” - Japanese equivalent

Is there an equivalent expression in Japanese for "strike while the iron is hot"? I've seen a few questions on here with phrases and their equivalents. Does anybody know of a site where these are ...
1
vote
1answer
102 views

“Pour your heart out” in Japanese [closed]

How would you say "pour your heart out" in Japanese? Is there a phrase for this? As in "I poured my heart and soul out to you".
2
votes
2answers
144 views

Apologizing with “sorry”

How would I say "Sorry, I don't understand" in Japanese? I know wakarimasen means I don't understand, but what's the equivalent of making it apologetic? Would it be something like wakarimasen ...
2
votes
2answers
154 views

A verb or noun for a 始発電車 arriving for passengers

Is there a name for a situation when a train departing from a source station (始発電車) arrives empty and waits for passengers? For example, is there a way to ask if the train is already waiting on a ...
7
votes
1answer
132 views

A phrase for a capable person with a critical view of himself

I am looking for a word, idiom or a phrase to describe an attitude when someone is able to and often publicly makes fun of one's own deficiencies. Having an objective, critical, maybe even cynical ...
8
votes
1answer
236 views

How to express the phrase “overrated” or “over-…”

What is the natural way to express the concept of 'overrated'? For example "this actor is overrated". The nearest I can think of is この役者はこうひょうかすぎる。But I don't know if this is even grammatically ...
8
votes
3answers
267 views

How would you say “for all I know” in Japanese?

The best I can think of is 僕が知る限り + fact + とは限らない. Does this work, are there better alternatives?
4
votes
1answer
237 views

What is the phrase for “the amount of time for paid activities”?

It might vary from company to company. When we work as a part-time employee, most companies usually pay only for the time we work. It means that we don't get paid for the break time in between. For ...
8
votes
1answer
547 views

How to invoke God/spirits in Japanese

No, this is not about any Buddhist chant or mantra that can be used to call forth Japanese gods or heavenly spirits, but rather about any specialized words or interjections that attract attention of ...
3
votes
1answer
461 views

How do you write “translation mine” in Japanese for academic writing?

When you translate a quoted citation, how do you write "translation mine" in Japanese to let the reader know that it is your own translation rather than an official one (or, to contrast yours to the ...
4
votes
2answers
205 views

In Japanese, how do you say you will skip ahead past one section for time's sake while reading aloud to an audience?

How do you succinctly say that you are going to skip ahead past the next section or paragraph for time's sake and tell the audience which spot you are picking up again when reading a paper aloud at an ...
5
votes
1answer
173 views

Indicating a lack of surprise

How do you indicate a lack of surprise at something? For example, in response to someone noting that Cyprus had given 12 points to Greece at the Eurovision Song Contest. I tried using "本当に?" ...
1
vote
1answer
511 views

How to say “Can I take a picture of / with you?”

If I'd like to take a picture with someone, how do I go about asking them? And also, if I want to take a picture of someone, how should I ask them? Would it be something like 写真を撮ってもいいですか?
3
votes
1answer
512 views

How do you say “beware the cats” in Japanese?

The Italians have the famous phrase "Attenti ai gatti". Is there something similar in Japan? Would be good to have both the kanji and kana versions, since I am still a beginner. I can work out the ...
1
vote
1answer
54 views

How can you express to the creator that you enjoyed a book/performance/album?

Say I'm writing a message (on twitter) to an author of a book you read, or a message to an artist about live you went to or album you listened to. I want to talk/ask about something else, but I want ...
6
votes
1answer
818 views

Is there a Japanese word or phrase for the chemistry in a relationship?

Is there a Japanese word or phrase for the chemistry in a relationship? And by "relationship", I don't mean a strictly romantic one. It could be the chemistry between best friends, or even the lack ...
2
votes
1answer
200 views

Is there a Japanese word for “XY problem”?

Is there a Japanese word for "XY problem"? (The phrase comes from here and here) XY problem - asking about your attempted solution rather than your actual problem. Or should I write 「XYプロブレム」or ...
12
votes
3answers
8k views

How do you ask for “the bill” at a restaurant?

This is probably a bit of a silly question, but what do you say in Japanese when you're asking for the bill in a restaurant? Or is it unusual to say anything at all? When I was in Japan I could never ...
12
votes
2answers
2k views

What do you say when giving something to somebody?

In English when you hold out something to someone, sometimes a vocal prompt like "here" or "there" is said to indicate that you are giving it to the person. In Chinese (or at least in Singapore) we ...
17
votes
2answers
2k views

How should I start an email when requesting something from someone I don't know well?

In English, there is a certain etiquette to follow when writing a business letter. From what I've seen so far, the same seems to be true in Japanese as well. If I was making a business-related ...
2
votes
2answers
245 views

Usual term for the topic of foreigners learning Japanese?

In English we can express in several ways the idea of foreigners learning English, or teaching themselves something. My title isn't totally clear so I'm looking for the name of the topic, not what ...
5
votes
1answer
173 views

Cartel, syndicate, anti-competitive practice

I've heard this story from several foreigners in Japan: I hired Japanese Company A for a service. I didn't like Japanese Company A, so I went to Japanese Company B in the same industry and tried ...
7
votes
2answers
5k views

a natural and short way to say I'm currently learning Japanese, and it isn't very good?

background: I'm playing Shogi 将棋 on a Japanese site since there are no good english ones, and every once in a while someone tries to open a converstaion with me. While I try to participate as much as ...
4
votes
1answer
2k views

How to ask someone to do something for you

I'd like to know how to politely ask someone (as a question, not a statement) to do something for me in Japanese. I'm already aware of the basic "___をください" and "___をおねがいします" patterns, but I don't want ...
2
votes
3answers
427 views

What is the phrase used as a label on the food container to convey “No sugar added”?

I am looking for a pure fruit juice without sugar added for daily consumption in Japan. The box only says 100% bla bla bla but I am not sure whether or not there is sugar added. So my question is: ...
1
vote
1answer
162 views

Difference between the questions 「男じゃないんですか?」 and 「男じゃないですか?」

I was wondering if there is a difference if you add that ん. Is the first one correct and the second one not? 男じゃないんですか? 男じゃないですか?
5
votes
2answers
432 views

How do you say “I already can tell (understand) X”?

I want to say the equivalent of I can already tell (understand) that game X is (going to be) harder than game Y. For instance, I've already beat game Y. And even though I've only just started ...
4
votes
1answer
224 views

“Automatic Doors Don't Open For Him”

I remember hearing this idiom which meant someone was so lowly, they were not even considered a person. I don't know the source, but remember it was referred to as a 'common Japanese idiom'. ...
1
vote
1answer
80 views

Is there such a thing as: tate ni naru?

So after reading the answer to this question, I did some searching and came across this website, which said, "A very common phrase is "yoko ni naru". (Become horizontal = lay down)." So I was ...
2
votes
1answer
131 views

What is the Japanese proverb for “even a thief is right three times out of ten”?

Even a thief is right three times out of ten. I ran into this quote in a book about Taiichi Ohno, the creator of Toyota's philosophy. Does anyone know a phrase that corresponds with this translation?...
9
votes
2answers
354 views

Proportion and Rate

How do I form a sentence pattern for: The more/less X happens, the more/less Y happens E.g. The more you stir, the faster the salt dissolves. The colder the weather, the more ...
1
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1answer
82 views

When to use XはYより vs XとYとどちらが……?

If I wanted to ask, Which is faster the red car or the blue car? I could phrase it as: 赤い{あかい}車{くるま}は青い{あおい}車より速い{はやい}ですか?  or 赤い{あかい}車{くるま}と青い{あおい}車とどちらが速い{はやい}ですか? But when would I use ...
6
votes
2answers
367 views

Greetings to use in email enquiries

As a potential customer, how should I start and end an email if I am emailing a business, for example, to ask about a product? How should I introduce myself? Would I need to use 謙譲語 and 尊敬語? ...
3
votes
1answer
579 views

Politely asking to stay at someone's home? お邪魔させてもらう、泊めてもらう、or 滞在させてもらう?

Which of the following is the most polite? Is any of them incorrect? Is there a more standard way to ask someone if you could stay with them while in town? ~ 8日から9日まで、あなたのお宅にお邪魔させてもらえませんか。 ~ ...