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I watched a song "あの娘シークレット", and there are these lyrics:

僕に初めて 見せるような表情
でもそれは僕に向けてじゃないよ

(Youtube link with timestamp: https://youtu.be/sgdPlDG1-8k?t=106)

My question: I have never seen a じゃない right after a te-form. I get the meaning of the lyrics, but the grammar gives me difficulty here. Is it not normal to write "向けてない" here instead?

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僕{ぼく}に初{はじ}めて 見{み}せるような表情{ひょうじょう}

でもそれは僕に向{む}けてじゃないよ

The 「じゃない」 in 「向けてじゃない」 is not negating the verb 「向ける」, at least not directly. A direct negation of 「向ける」 would be 「向けない」, 「向けていない」, etc. instead.

「向けてじゃない」=「向けてではない」

The 「じゃない」 here is negating that the girl's facial expression is being made specifically for/toward the speaker (僕).

To use the actual words, the 「じゃない」 is negating the (somewhat conceited) idea 「僕に初めて見せるような表情は僕に向けて(のもの)だ」.

In other words, it is saying 「それは[僕に向けての表情]ではない」.

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  • I still do not fully understand, unfortunately. In the last two examples you gave, you wrote "表情は僕に向けて(のもの)だ" and that this is negated in the song to basically mean "僕に向けての表情ではない". So the te-form is treated as some kind of noun? But why can you not just write "僕に向けているものだ" and "僕に向けている表情ではない" respectively, as relative clauses? What is the difference between the use of relative clauses and te-form + の in these cases? – Bonaparte Sep 8 '19 at 9:10
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    @Bonaparte japanese.stackexchange.com/questions/5212/… might be helpful – Ringil Sep 8 '19 at 13:32
  • @Ringil It really was. Thank you! – Bonaparte Sep 8 '19 at 14:28

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