I'm a bit confused about the following dialogue:

A: 彼が医学部に行くって、聞いた。
B: 彼が医者になるなんて信じられない。魚も料理できないのに。


A: Did you hear that he is entering medical studies?
B: I can't believe that he is becoming doctor or the like. Though he can't even make fish/He can't even make fish after all...

The comparison that is done here seems quite unusual to me, that's why I'm asking for confirmation.

2 Answers 2


I have not seen something similar, either, but yes it's obviously an ironical statement. 魚も料理できない in this context implies either (1) he is terribly clumsy, or (2) he is afraid of touching gross things like dead fish.

Note that "doctor or the like" is not what this sentence is saying. This なんて refers to the action of 医者になる as a whole, and it's explained here.


Certainly there is a nuance of irony over the extreme contrast between "fish cooking" and "a doctor (including a physician, a surgeon, etc.)". I think that the basic part of the contrast is "to cut flesh" or "to execute a surgical operation".

The speaker thinks that there is "a surgical operation" as one of the main part of the doctor's work. As an amateur's understanding, the speaker seems to think that "surgery", "cutting flesh" or "dissecting" are the same thing as a whole. On the other hand, I think that the speaker assumes that cleaning fish (removing the scales and guts from fish) and filleting fish (removing bones from fish), that are similar to a surgical operation, have to be done prior to cooking them.

As a whole, the speaker thinks and says ironically and ignorantly that the student cannot become a doctor because he cannot even cook fish.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .