Here is the context including the word. I put the blank spaces according to the column line breaks.

なんでえ 大の男が まっぴるまから 酒くらって のたのたしてよう

For this word, I have no clue to guess at all what it should really mean.

  • I am surprised that none of the online dictionaries I checked list のたのた(する)when it is such a common expression. Posted an answer below.
    – user4032
    Jun 14, 2016 at 4:30
  • My sensuous impression on this word is like a big animal moving tardily. Jun 14, 2016 at 7:22

3 Answers 3


「なんでえ 大{だい}の男{おとこ}が まっぴるまから 酒{さけ}くらって のたのたしてよう」

「のたのたする」 is a colloquial expression meaning "to wander around idly", "to act in a highly unproductive manner", etc.

It is in the "famous" verb pattern 「onomatopoeia + する」.

"What the heck! A big man (= grown man) drinking like a fish and wandering around idly under the broad daylight!"

The entire line is in the quintessential Kanto masculine colloquial speech.

「まっぴるま」=「真っ昼間」 Note it is 「ぴ」(pi), not 「ひ」.



"のたのたする" is a colloquial expression of "[無為]{むい}に過ごす / [怠惰]{たいだ}に過ごす" meaning "to idle one's time away" as well as "のらくらする."

のたのた、のらくら、のろのろ, all are a sort of onomatopoeic expression depicting laziness, inactiveness and slowness.

We use ”のたのた” and "のたのたする" in such a way as:

この忙しい時にのたのたしてるんじゃねえよ - Don't be idle in such a busy time.

今頃になって彼がのたのたやってきた - He came nonchalantly so late at this time.

[何時]{いつ}までものたのた喋くってんじゃねえ - Stop talking. I'm sick of hearing your lengthy and meaningless story.


Here is what the Dictionary of Iconic Expressions says, on pages 833-834:


M: The manner of moving slowly and heavily.

nota-nota (to)

(1) お腹がふくれてくると、普通だったらマタニティドレスにペタ靴で、お腹をつき出してノタノタ歩きますけれど […]。

Onaka ga fukurete-kuru to, futsuu da'tara mataniti:-doresu ni peta-gutsu de, onaka o tsuki-dashite nota-nota aruki-masu keredo [...].

When one's belly starts getting big, one normally wears maternity dresses and flat shoes, and walks along ponderously with one's stomach sticking out, but [...].

[Yoko Kirishima, "Habataku On-na e!" in On-na ga Habataku Toki: Ai, Jiyuu, Tabi no No:to, p.116, Kd. 1982]

(2) あっちからのたのた走って来るのは西武線。あ、あれ冷房車だ。

A'chi kara nota-nota hashi'te-kuru no wa Seibu-sen. A, are reiboo-sha da.

The train pulling slowly in from over there belongs to the Seibu line. Look! That's the air-conditioned car.

[Mokoto Arai, "Uchuu-gyo Ten-matsu-ki in Guri:n Rekuiemu, p.143, Ko. 1983]

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  • (I don't know what is with the little dot in "On・na" but I put it in anyway) Jun 14, 2016 at 16:04
  • I think they distinguish かんい from かに by writing kan·i and kani, and they write everywhere for just to be consistent, even in words like おんな on·na where it's not technically necessary. A more common way of making this distinction is to write n', but they're using ' for . Very interesting conventions!
    – user1478
    Jun 15, 2016 at 2:53

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