I heard someone say チョンボを犯した in a situation where they could not possibly be talking about 麻雀. I don't know if he plays 麻雀 or not, but it made me wonder, how common is using チョンボ to mean mistake among people who don't play 麻雀?

  • 1
    This can be a very touchy subject... Jul 28 '18 at 0:57
  • Why would that be?
    – By137
    Jul 28 '18 at 3:19
  • 「ぼ」を抜けた時の差別用語のためですか?
    – By137
    Jul 28 '18 at 3:32
  • Probably, because it depends on the person. People who like 麻雀 may use it, but people who don't know 麻雀 may not know it. Jul 28 '18 at 4:40
  • That wouldn't warrant calling it a touchy subject...
    – By137
    Jul 28 '18 at 5:02

Yes, チョンボ can be used in non-mahjong situations. As you know, it is originally a mahjong term, but its meaning of "making a mistake" has been carried over to everyday usage. It is even in dictionaries.

As for how common, I don't hear it all too often, but enough for me not to automatically assume it's about mahjong just by hearing it.

Note that there are many mahjong terms that have made it into everyday use. テンパる、メンツ、リーチ、安牌、ワンチャン are ones I still hear used a lot.

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    Outside of the Mahjong world, I don't hear/see it used nearly as often as I did in the 80's. In fact, I rarely hear/see it used in public nowadays. Jul 28 '18 at 0:53
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    ^ そうですね、私も、「チョンボ」って、年配のかたが使ってるのしか聞いたことないです。最初は意味が分からなかった。。
    – Chocolate
    Jul 28 '18 at 2:17
  • Well, I feel old now. It is true I only really hear it from my mahjong buddies... The other mahjong terms feel more common, but then again, my experience is skewed since I still play it.
    – Jimmy
    Jul 30 '18 at 19:06

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