Learning Japanese from zero by listening: 2021 Log

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golyplot
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Re: Japanese listening from nothing: 2020 Log

Postby golyplot » Sat Aug 29, 2020 4:09 pm

Yesterday morning's WK review session brought me to exactly 1000 burned items, which I thought was cool enough that I should post a screenshot. However, in generally I've not been doing great on WK reviews lately. It's not just a few leeches bouncing around either. A lot of it is old reviews coming back up that I've completely forgotten. I try to stay positive by reminding myself that kicking stuff back to the lower SRS levels is basically just the same thing as unlocking more material to study, but I wish I didn't have to study it again. Yesterday evening, I wasn't in the mood for Japanese at all. Perhaps today will be better.

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golyplot
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Re: Japanese listening from nothing: 2020 Log

Postby golyplot » Sun Aug 30, 2020 11:26 pm

This morning I had a crisis of confidence where I seriously thought I might have to give up on learning Japanese and never think about it again, but luckily I'm over that for now.

Yesterday, I started going through Tae Kim's grammar guide again thanks to the magic of web.archive.org, but as before, it's slow going. Reading about the grammar mostly just serves to highlight just how vast the gulf ahead of me is. On the bright side, at least I know most of the vocabulary used in the example sentences now. I recall when I looked at the guides early on in my journey, I really struggled because I didn't know any of the words either. Tae Kim of course provides a vocab section at the start of each lesson, and as I recently discovered, you can mouseover most words to see their reading and meaning, but trying to keep multiple pieces of information like that in your mind at once makes it really hard to learn. The grammar is mindbending enough when you can at least understand the individual words in the sentence.

I also noticed that in 4989 American Life, the host says omiyage very frequently. I learned omiyage previously as "souvenir" but she says it so often that I thought it had to be a different word I wasn't aware of. However, I looked it up and souvenir is the only meaning, more or less. Perhaps she's using it more metaphorically?

Also, I just signed up for Bunpro again for the third time. As usual, I created a new account and started over from the beginning. I think this time I might stick with it for longer, but who knows if I'll just get annoyed with it again.
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dampingwire
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Re: Japanese listening from nothing: 2020 Log

Postby dampingwire » Sun Aug 30, 2020 11:45 pm

golyplot wrote:I also noticed that in 4989 American Life, the host says omiyage very frequently. I learned omiyage previously as "souvenir" but she says it so often that I thought it had to be a different word I wasn't aware of. However, I looked it up and souvenir is the only meaning, more or less. Perhaps she's using it more metaphorically.


I've never looked at 4989 before but it looks like lots of episodes, so you'd need to pick one as an example. お土産 can be, for example, a gift you bring back from holiday o give to a friend or a neighbour or a boss or a co-worker. Supposedly you can buy them in the airport on your return, but I've no idea if that's actually true! It can also be a gift that you take when you visit someone at their home, for example.

So I guess (like almost everything in Japanese :-)) it depends on context.
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新完全マスター N2聴解 : 94 / 103新完全マスター N2読解 : 99 / 177
新完全マスター N2文法 : 197 / 197TY Comp. German : 0 / 389

golyplot
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Re: Japanese listening from nothing: 2020 Log

Postby golyplot » Tue Sep 01, 2020 4:18 am

I was shocked when my WK apprentice count dropped to 91 this evening. It's only been below 100 once in the last several months when it briefly dropped down to 98, but today it hit 91. I checked, and the last time it was this low was in April. The strangest part is that I haven't been doing any better on my reviews lately than usual. I guess maybe the latest level just had less/easier material than usual. Or possibly I've just been acing all the apprentice reviews while missing all the Enlightened and Burn reviews instead. Either way, it was pretty cool to see.

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dampingwire wrote:I've never looked at 4989 before but it looks like lots of episodes, so you'd need to pick one as an example.


She says it near the end of every episode.
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dampingwire
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Re: Japanese listening from nothing: 2020 Log

Postby dampingwire » Tue Sep 01, 2020 11:50 pm

golyplot wrote:
She says it near the end of every episode.


Sorry, but I couldn't hear it in #121. So I jumped to the scripts and went as far back as #118 looking for 土産 and やげ (i.e. just the snippets to try for a better match) and I couldn't find it there.

(It does seem like an interesting podcast, so I maybe should try it out for real soon).
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新完全マスター N2聴解 : 94 / 103新完全マスター N2読解 : 99 / 177
新完全マスター N2文法 : 197 / 197TY Comp. German : 0 / 389

golyplot
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Re: Japanese listening from nothing: 2020 Log

Postby golyplot » Wed Sep 02, 2020 12:51 am

dampingwire wrote:Sorry, but I couldn't hear it in #121. So I jumped to the scripts and went as far back as #118 looking for 土産 and やげ (i.e. just the snippets to try for a better match) and I couldn't find it there.

(It does seem like an interesting podcast, so I maybe should try it out for real soon).


Sorry about that, I should have specified the episodes I was listening to to save you the time. I noticed it at the end of 73 and 74, IIRC. She probably changes the ending speil from time to time. Oddly, I noticed it near the beginning of several later episodes instead, most recently ep 80. I haven't gotten up to ep89 yet, which is the first with a transcript available. Otherwise, I'd just check the transcripts.
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vonPeterhof
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Re: Japanese listening from nothing: 2020 Log

Postby vonPeterhof » Wed Sep 02, 2020 5:17 am

golyplot wrote:I also noticed that in 4989 American Life, the host says omiyage very frequently. I learned omiyage previously as "souvenir" but she says it so often that I thought it had to be a different word I wasn't aware of. However, I looked it up and souvenir is the only meaning, more or less. Perhaps she's using it more metaphorically?

Couldn't find the transcript for ep.73, but I listened to the segment at the end and there doesn't seem to be any special meaning to it, the host is just talking about gathering suggestions for what kinds of American お土産 would go over well in Japan. The only metaphorical use of the word I can think of is the phrase 冥土の土産, where it refers to a memory or an experience after which one can die without regrets.

Although I guess there is a bit of a mismatch between the meaning of "souvenir" and "お土産" to the point that it's sometimes best not to translate the one as the other and vice versa. It is my understanding that, since "souvenir" comes from the French for "memory" or "recollection", it's generally used in reference to something that can be kept as a keepsake for a long time, and can even be something you keep for yourself instead of giving to another person. While お土産 can be used that way, 記念品 is a much closer equivalent to that meaning of "souvenir". お土産 is used for any sort of local produce that can be taken back to share with people back home, and in fact it's more often than not used for foods and other perishables, which can't really serve as mementos for a long time. And, like dampingwire said, it's also used for little treats you bring with you when you visit another person's home, in which case it loses all nuance of "local produce of a specific area" (in fact I remember reading a foreigner in Japan specifically advising people not to bring something from your home country every time you visit a Japanese home as a guest, since it's not really expected for a normal visit and in fact might be seen as you showing off).
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golyplot
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Re: Japanese listening from nothing: 2020 Log

Postby golyplot » Wed Sep 02, 2020 5:25 am

Eight month update:

Wow, it's hard to believe I'm already two thirds of the way through my originally planned year of Japanese study! As usual, I have much less to show for it than I'd like. By the standards of my original post, I am officially "humbled".

For the last couple of months, Japanese study has largely fallen by the wayside, but a week ago, I finished up the other stuff I was working on and turned my full focus towards Japanese. Of course, the biggest part of my studies has been Wanikani, which I continued doing through thick and thin, so things didn't change as much as you might think.

The main thing that changed is that I was watching anime much less often, as well as all the other miscellaneous things I might try to do to learn Japanese which I wasn't doing due to being occupied by other pursuits. To save you from doing the math, I compared my current anime progress against last month's update. Since the last update, I've watched 15 episodes of CCS, 9 of BNA, and 4 of Saiki K. Around half of that all was just in the last week.

Anyway, I think the biggest obstacle is grammar, so I've started trying to actively study grammar again. I've been slowly going through Tae Kim's grammar guide (RIP) and restarted Bunpro, though it's hard to tell how effective that is. I'm certainly already annoyed again by how laggy Bunpro is. I wish they'd fix their site so it wasn't such a pain to use.

In other news, while watching ep4 of Saiki K. I noticed that he sorts the trash into bags labeled "burnable" and "nonburnable". (This is mainly due to reading the English subtitle file before watching the episode - I would have never noticed otherwise). I once learned the vocab "burnable trash" and "nonburnable trash" on Wanikani, but didn't think of it much at the time. It's interesting to see that Japan sorts trash that way, since that isn't a thing over here. It's really interesting to see all those little cultural differences that you'd never think about.


Shows watched:
Complete:
BNA: Brand New Animal (12 eps)
The Dragon Prince (27 eps)
Sword Art Online Alternative: Gun Gale Online (12 eps)
Hilda (10 eps)
Carmen Sandiego (19 eps)

Ongoing:
The Disastrous Life of Saiki K. (4 eps)
Cardcaptor Sakura (50 eps)

Abandoned:
One Piece (3 eps)
Jojo's Bizarre Adventure (1 ep)

Wanikani Update:
Level 36
Items Learned (Guru+): 422部首 1212漢字 3869単語


vonPeterhof wrote:Although I guess there is a bit of a mismatch between the meaning of "souvenir" and "お土産" to the point that it's sometimes best not to translate the one as the other and vice versa. It is my understanding that, since "souvenir" comes from the French for "memory" or "recollection", it's generally used in reference to something that can be kept as a keepsake for a long time, and can even be something you keep for yourself instead of giving to another person. While お土産 can be used that way, 記念品 is a much closer equivalent to that meaning of "souvenir". お土産 is used for any sort of local produce that can be taken back to share with people back home, and in fact it's more often than not used for foods and other perishables, which can't really serve as mementos for a long time. And, like dampingwire said, it's also used for little treats you bring with you when you visit another person's home, in which case it loses all nuance of "local produce of a specific area" (in fact I remember reading a foreigner in Japan specifically advising people not to bring something from your home country every time you visit a Japanese home as a guest, since it's not really expected for a normal visit and in fact might be seen as you showing off).


Thanks for the explanation! It seems like "souvenir" is not at all an appropriate translation for "お土産" in that case.
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golyplot
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Re: Japanese listening from nothing: 2020 Log

Postby golyplot » Wed Sep 02, 2020 3:45 pm

I still can't get over the whole "referring to people you are talking to by name" thing. It just feels so weird from a Western perspective. There's a scene in episode 51 of Card Captor Sakura where Sakura gives a teddy bear she made to Yukito and he responds with something like "Was this made by Sakura-chan?" where in English you'd instead say "Did you make this yourself?"

Incidentally, episode 51 also sees Sakura growing wings. I remember when I was a little kid, I once saw an ad for Cardcaptors on TV which showed Sakura growing wings. I always wondered what the context of that clip was. (My other exposure to the series as a kid was coming across the novelization of the time loop episode in a bookstore once and skimming through it.)
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seito
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Re: Japanese listening from nothing: 2020 Log

Postby seito » Thu Sep 03, 2020 5:55 am

golyplot wrote:In other news, while watching ep4 of Saiki K. I noticed that he sorts the trash into bags labeled "burnable" and "nonburnable". (This is mainly due to reading the English subtitle file before watching the episode - I would have never noticed otherwise). I once learned the vocab "burnable trash" and "nonburnable trash" on Wanikani, but didn't think of it much at the time. It's interesting to see that Japan sorts trash that way, since that isn't a thing over here. It's really interesting to see all those little cultural differences that you'd never think about.


Trash sorting in Japan is a bit complex and there's almost always at least 2-3 places to throw trash, depending on what it is. Fortunately, employees in restaurants and such will often take your trash and sort it, since even Japanese people don't always get it right.
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