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20 words of English origin that Japanese people often mistake for real thing

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By Andrew Miller

How many of you have ever heard of the Japanese word "wasei eigo?" A direct translation into English would be “Japanese-made English,” but put more simply the word refers to English words that, after a little tampering, have been adopted into the modern Japanese lexicon and used on an everyday basis. Despite having their origins in English, "wasei eigo" words often have quite different meanings to those on which they are based. Consequently, Japanese visitors to English-speaking countries using terms like “baby car” and “key holder” — words that are thought to be “English” in Japan — are often met with raised eyebrows and blank stares from native English speakers.

So come with us now as we look at the top 20 "wasei" English words that cause Japanese people trouble when they break them out while abroad.

It perhaps doesn’t help that the majority of these words, when pronounced in “katakana English” and with a Japanese accent, sound even further removed from their English originals, but we’re sure you’ll agree that even in their written form some of them are bound to cause confusion in English-speaking countries. The Japanese pronunciations are written in italics alongside each word.

  1. Salary man, OL (Office Lady) - sararii man

During a trip abroad, it is not unusual to be asked about one’s occupation. Many Japanese believe that the word salary man is used as an everyday English word referring to men who work in an office. It is also believed that OL refers to women working in the same environment. However, while such connotations are true within Japan, in an English-speaking country, the words office worker are used regardless of the sex. While salary man may feel natural from a Japanese speaker’s perspective, in an English-speaking country the same word defines a male worker who is in receipt of a salary.

  1. Key holder - kii horuda

When visiting a tourist attraction, it is common to buy a key ring, or key chain as a souvenir. However, the Japanese English expression for these trinkets is key holder. The term key holder itself is not completely incomprehensible; however the most natural would obviously be key ring or key chain.

  1. Cooler - kura

In Japan, the English air conditioner is referred to as cooler. In the U.S., this word may well be confused with a refrigerator in a shop or store. In the UK, meanwhile, telling hotel staff that the kura is broken would result in polite smiles at best.

  1. Gasoline stand - gasoriin sutando

Particularly for those using a rental car, knowing where to be able to refill your gas tank is essential. However in Japan, the term gasoline stand is used in place of the terms gas station in the U.S., or filling station or petrol station in the UK, Australia and Singapore. While gasoline stand is not entirely incomprehensible, it is likely to require a moment’s thought on the part of the listener.

  1. Free size - furii saizu

In Japan, the phrase free size is one, which refers to clothing that doesn’t adhere to a specific measurement but is rather designed for anyone regardless of his or her body size. In an English-speaking country, the phrase most frequently used is one size fits all. In this sense, when asking a question, the most natural form would be Is this one-size-fits-all?

  1. Baby car - bebii kaa

The term baby car is also a Japanese English phrase and refers to the English words stroller, pushchair or baby carriage; i.e. the thing you push a baby around in that looks sort of like a car.

  1. Potato fry - poteto furai

In Japan, potato fry is a food that is an accompaniment to a hamburger or a snack to be eaten with alcohol. However, in English, the same phrase is referred to as French fries (U.S.) or chips (UK).

  1. Morning call - moningu koru

The phrase morning call is one which defines being woken up by the hotel staff at your preferred time. Morning call is a phrase that has taken root in Japanese society; nevertheless the phrase used abroad carrying the same meaning and used much more commonly is wake-up call. Hopefully, hotel staff would be able to put two and two together, though and realize that a call in the morning could mean only one thing.

  1. Hotel front - furonto

When staying at a hotel, asking “Where is the front?” is another phrase that Japanese people often use. This does, in fact, refer to the front desk or hotel reception.

  1. Guard man - gado man

The security guard who stands in front of a high-class building or bank is referred to as “guard man” in Japanese English.

  1. Claim - kuremu

Making a complaint against someone or something is known in Japanese English simply as a claim; however among native English speakers the word complaint is used. For example, a Japanese person might say that they would like to “make a claim” to the hotel or restaurant manager.

  1. Mug cup - magu kappu

Although not completely incomprehensible, the addition of the word cup at the end of mug seems rather unnatural. Japanese use this word to distinguish between a mug and a small (non-wine) glass or tumbler which, somewhat confusingly, they refer to as a cup, or “koppu”.

  1. Laptop - noto pasokon

The advances in portable computers in recent years has resulted in a natural increase in travelers bringing their laptops with them abroad. The word for laptop computer in Japanese English is Noto pasokon which is an abbreviation of notebook personal computer. Of all the Japanese English words we’ve looked at so far, this is perhaps the one that is most strikingly different to its original English counterpart.

  1. Order made - ooda meido

The Japanese English phrase order made is one that refers to the English made-to-order, or custom made.

  1. Jet coaster - jetto kosuta

This is a term that refers to arguably the most popular attraction at theme parks, the roller coaster. Still, we suppose they do feel like being strapped to a jet…

  1. Take out - teiku auto

Depending on the part of the world you’re in, asking for a take out please at a restaurant or fast food establishment could be met with some puzzled looks. This is the term that, along with the pre-existing and perfectly decent Japanese phrase 「持ち帰り」 mochikaeri, is used by Japanese people to refer to “to go” (U.S.) or “take away” (UK) food, often failing to convey the same message when used in English-speaking countries.

  1. Coin laundry - koin randorii

In Japan the phrase coin laundry is used to refer to what is commonly known abroad as laundromat or launderette.

  1. Game center - gemu senta

Another phrase which is quite different to that used among native English speakers is game center, referring to video arcades. Although not completely incomprehensible using this term abroad could create some confusion.

  1. Consent - konsento

This is a weird one. The English power outlet (U.S.) or plug socket (UK) is known in Japan as a konsento, making this one of the most incomprehensible "wase eigo" words out there. If a Japanese speaker asks you where the konsento is, they’re not asking for permission to do something.

  1. Decoration cake - dekorehshon keki

Decoration cake is a combination of the words decoration and cake which in Japan suggests a cake with lots of decoration. The phrase often used abroad is fancy cake or simply really pretty cakes. But there again, what cake doesn’t look incredible?

Well there you have it -- 20 Japanese-English words that leave many Japanese dazed and confused when they try to use them abroad. Having reading the above, what were you’re impressions of the word differences? Were there some words that were more, or perhaps less comprehensible than suggested above? Let us know what you think!

Source: Eigo Kyouzai Lab

Read more stories from RocketNews24. -- Learning Language Through Nonsense -- Japanese Tourists Share Impressions of Traveling Abroad With Limited English -- Is the Japanese Word for “Thank You” Losing Its Meaning?

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156 Comments
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Actually, I've heard "coin laundry" being used regularly in NYC when I lived there.

14 ( +14 / -0 )

google the phrase "coin laundry" and you'll see what I mean.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

One that always amuses me is "sabisu" or service, to mean something for free.

17 ( +17 / -0 )

If someone beeps their horn at the wife while she is driving she reports to me (in great detail the circumstances surrounding the incident) that someone did a "correction" to her. She also calls spiders web a "web net".

1 ( +2 / -1 )

SimondB

Just FYI, when the Japanese speak of honking their horn, they are not saying "correction, but rather they are saying "Klaxon," a US trademarked horn maker. So in essence what the Japanese are doing is much like those westerners who call tissues "Kleenex."

11 ( +11 / -0 )

I love "high tension." When people say it to me, I always say "I'm not tense at all." They never get it.

7 ( +10 / -3 )

Niloc1981 - Hey thanks for that. Now I think about she probably is saying "Klaxon". I learnt something interesting today.

And the wife calls Kleenex "tish", or that's what it sounds like to me. Does something similar for mosquitoes.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

I'd have to say, if I ever heard those, you're going to get one really weird look.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I think the one that confused me the most was "a happening." They use it to refer to something that is occurring, or has occurred, something happened or something happened. For example a student once told me that there was "a happening" at Tokyo Station so the train was going to be late.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

They use it to refer to something that is occurring, or has occurred, something happened or something happened.

That second something happened was supposed to be... something is happening.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

"Klaxon," a US trademarked horn maker

@Niloc1981 Good example. Here are two others: "hochikisu" for stapler from "Hotchkiss" -- owner(s) of an 1890s-era stapler company, and "rentogen" for x-ray from "Roentgen" -- Wilhelm Konrad Roentgen, the man who discovered the x-ray.

8 ( +9 / -1 )

It is incomprehensible how many times they used the word incomprehensible in this article.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Actually, a lot of these terms exist or existed in English already, for example:

Key Holder - A place you keep keys, normally a board with nails driven into it. Cooler - A bag designed to keep stuff cool. Normally used for picnics. It is worth nothing that in my area of Japan this is how it is used, and that airconditioning is referred to as Aircon, a common Southern Hemisphere abbreviation.

Other words entered English popular culture ages ago, for example the term "salaryman" is used in William Gibson's novel "Neuromancer", which was published back in 1984.

Honestly though, these are just examples of Japanese slang. Just look at the term Barbeque. In Australia it is a Barbie. In South Africa it is a Braai. In the U.K. they use the term so loosely that they'll sometimes call frying steaks over the gas inside the house a Barbeque. And in the U.S. they include outdoor gas barbeques in the category, whereas in most Southern hemisphere countries a barbeque requires a wood fire.

shrug

5 ( +5 / -0 )

The worst part is when you get used to the Engrish and you end up using in yourself when you go home for a visit!

14 ( +15 / -1 )

No "Pantsu"? If a Japanese woman were to ask where are the "pantsu" in a English speaking store; she'd not be directed to the expected place. Nor, for that matter, would an American seeking pants at a Japanese department store. Perhaps a too delicate example...

3 ( +7 / -4 )

Sometimes, when people use wasei eigo with me, I understand the meaning quickly, but I also get a bit annoyed when I can't remember the ACTUAL proper word or phrase.

A friend once asked me for some 'kitchen paper' and I was really confused about what she wanted. I finally understood that she wanted some paper towels.

I will say that both "take out" and 'to go' is used back home, though.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

@Xeno

"Pants" is completely normal English in most of the world. It's only in North America that the meaning's been screwed up.

-4 ( +5 / -9 )

'Hip' can be confusing.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

"Jumper" means Jacket/coat?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

In the U.K. Baby car = pram Order made = tailor-made

Also, we never say plug socket. We should say socket, but we often say plug when referring to the socket.

1 ( +3 / -1 )

These words often cause humorous misunderstandings.

I remember many years ago a Japanese student studying in my country casually remarking that he lived in a mansion in Japan. This led to a lot of talk among us about the rich Japanese exchange student in our midst... ("manshon" = unit in an apartment building/condominium).

Some other interesting ones: • Handle keeper (handoru kipa) = designated driver • Viking (baikingu) = all-you-can-eat

6 ( +8 / -2 )

quite a few of these sound like regular English to me (guard man, take out, coin laundry, etc).

6 ( +6 / -0 )

How about "viking" / bikingu for buffet? I guess smorgasbord would get mangled in katakana. I was invited to a Rotary Intl party many years ago and informed that it would be "viking-style". Since I was a JET in the countryside whod recently arrived, the mental images this conjured up were incompatible with what Id seen so far but I went with the flow. I dressed casually and wore a Swedish t-shirt (blue & yellow) that I happened to own. After a 30 minute drive into the hills, we pulled up to a swanky country club and walked inside to see ice sculptures and a fancy spread of food. "Whats viking-esqe about this?", I thought. Later I was asked to make a speech about internationalisation with no prior warning - but that`s another story.

8 ( +10 / -2 )

someone forgot " Sekkuso Furendo" friends with benefits , just saying!

0 ( +3 / -3 )

I don't think people will look at you funny if you ask for take-out or a coin laundry in the US...

However, I recently went to Hong Kong, and they kept saying "take away," and I was confused as to why they weren't saying "to go." I guess they learned British English!

1 ( +3 / -2 )

How about "smart"? Instead of it meaning intellectual, they use the word to say how someone (usually a woman) is slim.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

manikyua-"manicure" (treatment for the care of the hands and fingernails) instead of "nail polish" echi shimasho -Let's make "H", doesn't mean let's do a perticular kind of drug.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

When years ago my GF at the time asked if me if Id like her to wear a " T-baggu "....i said "sure " not knowing what to expect but definately was glad to find out it means a G-string and not a bag of Liptons finest... Never forget that one ...LOL

8 ( +10 / -2 )

Dragoncloud64Apr. 05, 2013 - 10:20AM JST However, I recently went to Hong Kong, and they kept saying "take away," and I was confused as to why they weren't saying "to go." I guess they learned British English!

Ummm... yes. Hong Kong was leased by the British for 100 years, and just recently returned to China, although it remains in many regards a separate entity. The English in Hong Kong is therefore most definitely predominantly British English. Not that I have a problem with the American dialect, nor do I have a problem with the Australian dialect, etc.. all one needs to do is exercise the brain a little and guess what they're trying to say. Most of the time it is fairly clear from context.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

A great article and very illuminating. Some of the words do honour their original inventors like Hotchkiss-stapler and Roentogen-X Rays. Winka for indicator got me for a long time along with Klaxon for horn and handle for steering wheel.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Key holder, morning call, take out, coin laundry, and a happening are English terms with the same meaning. Seems some people need to check their English. I will grant that "happening" is used as much but it came out of the 1960's. It's not a bad movie too.

Here is one solar system for solar heating system.

Then you have products like Pocari Sweat or Calpis, renamed Calpico in the US.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

"Napkin"...don't ask for one at the dinner table in Japan.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

Panku = flat tire, not the Sex Pistols. Some of these examples and stories you guys are posting are great. Thanks for the laughs everyone!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

We should make another list of "wasei-eigo" that has no real equivalent in English, such as "barrier-free" which means a flat living environment without steps / gaps / etc. or "skin-ship" which refers to physical contact but in the sense that it promotes communication or a better relationship. Or how about a list of words that is actually English but foreigners thought were Japanese? For the longest time I didn't realize that "tora-uma" was trauma, or that "dommai" was don't mind or "oh-rai" was alright. Did you know that "e-ru" (as in to cheer for someone) comes from the word "yell?"

2 ( +2 / -0 )

One that still bewilders me today is "purasu arufa" (plus alpha) to describe anything as an addition to what they have just previously said. You hear it a lot on from a business perspective.

I asked friends from the US and UK whether it is used there and they said it's not; I've also never heard of it in my life in Australia.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

We should make another list of "wasei-eigo" that has no real equivalent in English, such as "barrier-free"

"Barrier-free" is actually the accepted term in English.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

To me "mana modo" meaning "silent mode" was quite striking (you can often see it on train signs) .

0 ( +2 / -2 )

When people refer to celebrities as 'talent' or 'talento' it still makes me chuckle. Most of these celebs are talentless or have 1 act or trait that makes them famous.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Okay. My wife is in hospital and in labor. During her ordeal I remembered reading somewhere that sucking on ice cubes may offer some comfort(don't remember the exact details). I ask my mother in law, using my limited Japanese at the time, If she can she go buy some "chi saizu aisu" meaning small ice cubes in my mind. Well, she came back with PINO, small pieces of ice cream with chocolate outside. Not what you need during a 26 hr labor..... We still laugh at that one, 20 yrs later. ウィルス Had me perplexed until a doctor told me the English. Oh... virus. I get it now

1 ( +2 / -1 )

@Samu Rai : Exactly! I've been saying that for years! There are a few that are pretty hilarious but the vast majority are just randoms who aren't funny at all and have no real "talent" to speak of.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Katakana is the reason WHY they never learn English.

7 ( +9 / -4 )

Klaxon was another that took awhile to figure out. Unrelated but good. Also in hospital and while waiting for something, my wife hears 2 japanese nurses saying "you do it" "what should we do" while an elderly foreigner was nearby. My wife asks if she can help translate...Well, they wanted to tell him they wanted a stool sample. My wife only knew the slang word and said, " They want you to put your sh** in this cup" They guy busts out laughing. After he says "what do I use my finger?" Ha ha ha you are so funny..ha ha ha She then relays the message from nurses that there is a spoon. He laughs more

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Another recent one is " cost performance", or just "kosutopo", as they will.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Thank you JT for very informative and interesting article. Not only the article but also I like comments very much.

Have you ever seen on vending machines "All 100 Yen" instead "each 100 Yen". My friend Dave complain when people call him as Deebu デーブ. Interesting Lice=Riceライスspecially when you are eating.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

a couple of years ago at mcdonalds in Guam I tried to order a "set" of bigmac..

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Key holder, morning call, take out, coin laundry, and a happening are English terms with the same meaning. Seems some people need to check their English.

You sure about that?? In England they certainly aren't.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

It's not quite the same thing, but can anyone explain why English-speakers in Japan always seem to refer to their mobile phones as "keitais"? I can't think of any other everyday objects that we constantly talk about in Japanese.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Sorry, meant to highlight key holder and happening. A key holder is someone who holds the keys to a building, I think in Am.English too, and I have never heard Happening used as a noun in normal conversation.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

can anyone explain why English-speakers in Japan always seem to refer to their mobile phones as "keitais"? I can't think of any other everyday objects that we constantly talk about in Japanese.

I'm guessing it's because "keitai" is simply a more efficient expression than the somewhat clumsy "mobile phone."

0 ( +1 / -1 )

somewhat confusingly, they refer to as a cup, or “koppu”.

It would not have been confusing if the author had done more research. The Kojien dictionary says the earliest occurrence of "koppu" was in 1724 and that the word was derived from Dutch. Magu kappu and koppu entered Japan two centuries apart.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

These words are normal English in the USA: coin laundry; take out.

@marcelito - When referring to a g-string, she is not saying "T-baggu" but "T-bakku" which is derived from "t-back" referring to the vertical and horizontal strings at the back of a g-string making the shape of the capital letter, "T". "T-back" is standard slang in North America for exceptionally skimpy thong underwear. (just google it) In Japan, it is common for some young women to wear a t-back exposed above the waistline at the back. I saw this even in workplace situations, such as at Matsushita.

@Tahoochi - a "panku" is derived from the English "puncture" which I believe is the acceptable expression in the UK, whereas "flat tire" is used in the USA.****

4 ( +4 / -0 )

@fletcher

Thanks, you're right : )

The wife's just come up with a theory: Nobody used keitais twenty-odd years ago when I got to Japan, so my generation didn't really have a word in English. We naturally picked up the Japanese word as they became popular.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@Bill

When referring to a g-string, she is not saying "T-baggu" but "T-bakku"

Yes, there's an important difference, but I've noticed a lot of blushing and giggling in the classroom whenever anyone has to mention "teabag".

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Other words entered English popular culture ages ago, for example the term "salaryman" is used in William Gibson's >novel "Neuromancer", which was published back in 1984.

It didn't enter popular culture. Gibson was consciously going for exotic futuristic wasei-eigo.

For "cost-performance", it's English, but businessese. For consumer products we would say "good value".

1 ( +1 / -0 )

There are a couple in the list that can cause problems, but I say it's a pretty poorly compiled list overall. There are some 20,000 English words used in Japanese (more than your average speaker of English speaks), some garbled, some CLOSE to the actual English meaning. A better article would have been an informative one on the six or so different forms of 'Katakana English'; for example 1) those that closely resemble the actual English meaning: 'kuri-ningu' for dry cleaners. 2) English words that are often shortened: pasukon, digikame. 3) Words that have been mashed together and have no meaning in English whatsoever: "guts pose". 4) English words as they are, but that have completely different meanings: 'renewal', 'claim' (as said in the article). 5) Completely made up English: "virgin road".

Something like that. Or a more interesting list, though still not all that interesting an article, might be talking about loan words that Japanese use that they THINK are English and throw into conversation; like "gerandu" (ski slope) or "enerugish" (energetic).

0 ( +4 / -4 )

The French word PENSION, used for guest house, B&B or small hotel in the UK means nenkin.

If I was to say to my mates back home that I was going to stay in a pension for the weekend, they would think i'd gone prematurely senile.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

The one I think should be fixed is "ho-mu" meaning a train platform. Imagine your young Japanese backpacker trying to find the platform in London or NY! Platform is a simple two-syllable word. Inventing "ho-mu", also a two syllable word ,does not really help anyone, or the English language communication skills of Japanese people.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

• Handle keeper (handoru kipa) = designated driver

????? In nearly 30 years of living here I have never heard this one before. I wonder is it a local dialect thing? I asked my Japanese friends if they heard of it and they all said no.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

While I'm at it, the same goes for "han-do-ru" (three syllables) which means "steering wheel" (three syllables).

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@marcelito - When referring to a g-string, she is not saying "T-baggu" but "T-bakku" which is derived from "t-back" referring to the vertical and horizontal strings at the back of a g-string making the shape of the capital letter,

@bill - Thanks ..yes, I did figure that one out once I saw the item in question. :-) Remembering the episode as a " T-bag " rather that a "T-back " sure made it funnier and easier to remember for me though.

"In Japan, it is common for some young women to wear a t-back exposed above the waistline at the back. I saw this even in workplace situations, such as at Matsushita."

Can,t really say its "common " for young J-women to wear an exposed t-back above their waistline in my neighbourhood...but if that is your experience I have to say you are one lucky guy to work in such a workplace.:-)

0 ( +0 / -0 )

"Klaxon,"

Is most probably from the French "klaxonner" which actually means the same thing.

A part from that, I must have been here far too long - nothing on this list "amazes" me !

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I'm not sure, but I think "gasoline stand" is actually older American Engilsh that isn't common anymore in the U.S.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

pasukon

A shortening of a word native speakers don't even really use when talking about computers. Generally use just say computer instead of personal computer and only specify if we mean mainframe or business computer.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Nessie: "A shortening of a word native speakers don't even really use when talking about computers."

Correction, it's the shortening, from quite some time ago, of a word native speakers don't even really use much NOW (it was plenty used in the past), because they are so common place.

Anyway, I think Japanese need to be careful of the abbreviations they use more than anything. I still remember my jaw dropping when a Japanese woman said to me, verbatim, "My daughter is always using 'K-Y'. Everywhere! All around the house! 'K-Y'! 'K-Y'! I can't understand young people!". Until that day I had not been aware of the Japanese meaning of K-Y, and that woman unfortunately learned about the popular product by the same name.

Obviously along the same lines there are pronunciation concerns, especially around election time.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

When Japanese say one-piece they mean a dress. When people in the States say one-piece they mean a type of swimming suit, also called a maillot.

When Japanese say soft they mean software.

Drinking party? Does anyone anywhere but here really say that? Isn't is sort of assumed that if adults go out there will be drinking involved to one extent or the other? Wouldn't most English speakers just say we went out or we went out for drinks?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

????? In nearly 30 years of living here I have never heard this one before. I wonder is it a local dialect thing? I asked my Japanese friends if they heard of it and they all said no.

@Yubaru

I don't think I have ever heard a Japanese person say "handoru kipa" either, but I have seen it in writing. I suspect it was first coined by police departments or other government agencies as part of a designated driver campaign, but never caught on as far as use by the public.

Anyway, the phrase even has its own logo. A google search of ハンドルキーパーgenerates many thousands of hits. Try a google image search for the logo.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

How about ja-ji- (Jersey) which means sweats / track suit.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

O ri, O ri, O ri, Sutoppo.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Here's one that I use in English because I don't think there is an English equivalent: "San-kyu jiko?" (Thank you car accident)

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Please ignore my "?" mark in above post. (Why no edit function here??)

0 ( +0 / -0 )

ambrosia: "Drinking party? Does anyone anywhere but here really say that? Isn't is sort of assumed that if adults go out there will be drinking involved to one extent or the other? Wouldn't most English speakers just say we went out or we went out for drinks?"

Not really the same thing, because most drinking parties, as minor or major as they may be, are usually meticulously organized events. I've never heard Hiroshi say, "Let's go have a drinking party after work", but you know full well there are plenty of drinking parties going on under the cherry trees as we speak (well, in the daytime, anyway).

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Moondog: "Here's one that I use in English because I don't think there is an English equivalent: "San-kyu jiko?" (Thank you car accident)"

Probably because in most languages people do not express thanks for that kind of event. :)

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Anyway, I think Japanese need to be careful of the abbreviations they use more than anything.

Definitely! I'm guessing you know the abbreviation for "First Kitchen"? 「ファッキン」

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Magu kappu and koppu entered Japan two centuries apart.

Maggu kappu is one of those combination words concocted because no one would know what the original word meant on its own. A couple of others are 'gravy sauce' and 'chili beans' .

0 ( +0 / -0 )

TanakaTaro: "Definitely! I'm guessing you know the abbreviation for "First Kitchen"? 「ファッキン"

Exactly. Do you know that most of the shops' signs have now been changed to Roman characters? One reason is because everyone thought it meant 'Fast', like fast-food, and not 'first' as in implying they are better. They still suck, but it's a decent change.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

The term baby car is also a Japanese English phrase and refers to the English words stroller, pushchair or baby carriage; i.e. the thing you push a baby around in that looks sort of like a car.

Oh, you mean a pram!

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

TanakaTaro: "Definitely! I'm guessing you know the abbreviation for "First Kitchen"? 「ファッキン」"

COMPLETELY missed the main point of your post, sorry. Yes, that kind of thing is indeed dangerous. But then, would such a restaurant not slightly pique your interests? Okay, that's a bit gross... but I get your point.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

"Front" in a hotel certainly is a bit odd.

But I was really taken aback coming out of a restaurant in a hotel when a student said, "I'm going to croak!"

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ウィルス Had me perplexed until a doctor told me the English. Oh... virus. I get it now

Don't blame him; in classical Latin the letter V was pronounced like our W, so even if the Japanese couldn't say ヴィルス (like in today's Italianized Latin) or English-like ヴァイルス, they're actually more correct.

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How about "entry number 1 ban!"

"Tamagawa River"

"Shurijo Castle Park"

"Mt Fujiyama"

There are many, many more.

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In America " cooler " means ice machine or a portable styrofoam/plastic container for beer, meat and drinks for picnics.

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If I am not mistaken, the New Oxford American Ditionary recognizes "salaryman, pl. salarymen" as an American English word.and "coin laundry" and "morning call", for example, are legitimate words in Standard Japanese English. To hell with purists! English is after all an international language, which means it is not a property of the descendants of the Anglo-Saxons who colonized the island calle "Britain."

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This is mispronunciations are not peculiar to Japanese persons only. If a language does not have a certain sound, is bound to mispronounce that sound in another language. The Germans have hard time to pronounce the word THE, they will say DZE while South Africans will have a very heavy R which sounds RHE. One rand = one rhand. In some places they will pronounce RABEL for LABEL because in their mother tongue the sound L does not exist.

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tontte2012

Japanese English isn't English though, it's Japanese. That's the point. Words coming from English but where the meaning has changed when used in Japanese, but Japanese think the meaning is the same. You could say "konsentop" was just as Japanese a word as "arigatou". Just like English was taken from numerous languages, Latin, French, German etc, we don' say we're speaking French, German, or Italian, when we use a word that originated in one of those languages, we're speaking English, or that we're speaking Japanese when we say "Let's go to karaoke". World Englishes would be countries where the language spoken is ostensibly English, but not the original, i.e India, Singapore, the Caribbean, even America!

One ironic one is NEET, which was actually an acronym invented by the UK government but that never caught on in England or in English, but did in Japan, and is actually now, years later, catching on slightly more in the UK. I remember a very low level student saying to me that her son was a "parasite single" which I was really impressed with compared to her usual piss poor attempts at conjugating "to be", until I realised it was actually really a Japanese phrase.

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"konsent", not "konsentop". I have no idea where that came from!

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Fries and chips are different. So are wedges. Fries- thin barely potato. Chips- thicker still crunchy but with cooked potato flesh. Wedge- thick. Its bad that Japanese merge all them together into undescriptive fried potato- most are deep-fried in a pool of hot oil or oven baked. Fried is in pan. For bad wasei eigo- Goodo Jobu - which you can hear school children mumble all the time but has no meaning.

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Relative to honking a horn; klaxxoner is the french verb for honking a horn. I wonder if they imported it from the English.

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you gotta love rocketnews24 to stir the pot of the gaijin community with their journ-o-tainment.

and the title is totally misleading. japanese people don't mistake these words/phrases for "real things." they are merely slang.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

When I arrived in Japan not only did I have to learn some Japanese, but also American English!

I was a stunned mullet when I heard a fellow teacher say 'good Job' to a student. When I was a small child I remember (yes I do) sitting on the potty and being told to do a 'job'. When I did I was praised. To hear a North American repeat "good job, good job!" I had no idea what he was referring to! Finally I realised: he meant 'well done'...

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oikawa Yes they are American English terms, some are archaic as "happening"; it was largely a slang term used into late 60's and early 70's revolving around the student protest movement. There is still a strong legacy from this time. You ever wonder why Japanese students flash the "V" sign and say "piisu" (peace) when photos of them are taken. Legacy of the Peace Movement (anti-war student movement) when the "V" was the peace sign instead ot the "V" for victory sign of their father's generation.

koppu for cup is from dutch origin and zabon for pants/trousers is from Portuguese as well as sabon used in Japan for soap and bubbles and tempura from tempora/tempero. Guess, we have the Portuguese to thank for Japanese tempura.

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Melon pan, I always remembered when my partners and me, walking around Himeji, find a stand of Melon pan, and everybody though that the bread that they sell has a melon flavor, so we decided to buy some. The surprise was big for us when the flavor was vanilla, then we asked why they called melon pan, it was because of the form of Melon (that in Mexico the bread gets the name of Concha, that mean "shell" in English due to be closer of a turtle shell). We just laughed at the reply and we left eating our conchas.

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'Tamagawa River"

"Shurijo Castle Park"

"Mt Fujiyama"'

This type of signage was adopted in the early 90s. It was adopted nationwide to make places more accessible for tourists, easier to ask directions.

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I do enjoy McDonald's "Full of beans" campaign with their coffee. They certainly didn't do any research into how in North America it doesn't have the old English English meaning of 'genki' so much as it does 'full of crap'.

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I was just on the Domino site and under the pasta menu they had; "*This item can be delivered by itself." I know what they mean but I just imagine a plate of pasta running down the street.

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One that always amuses me is "sabisu" or service, to mean something for free.

And 'borunteaa' or 'volunteer' means someone who works fro free when asked (or rather coerced) rather than what we mean mean by volunteer.

I worked in a school once where the principal put pressure on me to give the staff free eikaiwa lessons and she refferd to me as a 'volunteer'. I saw things slightly differently!

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Great comments and examples! To help finish the list, how about kyabakura, (a hostess club) which is a portmanteau from the words 'cabaret' (kyaba) and 'club' (kura).

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To finish this.

shootsu ショーツ means women's or girl's underwear.

Shorts are hanzubon or shotopantsu in Japanese.

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I'd always thought 'klaxxon' in Japanese came from the klaxon a submarine uses to signal 'dive'

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Wow, this is helpful. I thought I was a bit nuts guessing about plus alpha... of course I could guess many, conserto being electrical current and not ELO Electric Light Orchestra... and, oh yes, my first encounter with viking dining at a spa in Ito, well, I did not find people with horned helmuts on, tho I was certainly on the lookout... fun stuff.

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What a horrible article. No offense but I could do better.

As an American I can tell you that that I can say;

"Honey the coffee's ready, have you seen my MUG CUP?" " I don't have a washing machine so every week I take it to the COIN LAUNDRY." " On the corner of Main and Broadway there's a GASOLINE STAND. Make a right." " Damn nice suit! Thanks, I had it ORDER MADE." " Honey you wanna cook tonight or should we order TAKE OUT?"

Without anyone raising an eyebrow.

Other terms like "jet Coaster" "Cooler" "Game Center" all are not the same as in English but there's enough common word components that anyone with an IQ over 80 can figure it out. Especially in the context of their usage.

One needs to remember that the Japanese first had contact with the west in the mid 1500s so some words are old, plus they took words from languages other than English. Without knowing German, I had difficulty understanding why part-time work was called BAITO, from he German Or why an Electrical outlet is called KONSENTO, coming from the old English CONCENTRIC PLUG. Or why Playing Cards are called TORAMPU from the term "Trump Card".

But there are still mysteries. I wish the author explained why people's TENSIONS GO UP in Japan when they get excited. Or why they can't seem to tell the difference between a KAYAK and a CANOE.

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my pace.

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smithinjapanApr. 06, 2013 - 09:37AM JST I do enjoy McDonald's "Full of beans" campaign with their coffee. They certainly didn't do any research into how in >North America it doesn't have the old English English meaning of 'genki' so much as it does 'full of crap'.

"Full of Beans" to mean full of energy isn't OLD English. It means "Full of Energy" today. "Definition: full of spirit Synonyms: active, antic, bouncy, coltish, dashing, feeling one's oats, frolicsome, full of beans , gamesome, high-spirited, in high spirits, jumpy, kittenish, larkish, lively, peppy, playful, prankish, rollicking, romping, spirited, sportive, wicked, zesty, zippy"

"be full of beans to have a lot of energy and enthusiasm I've never met anyone so full of beans before breakfast. See also: bean, full"

You are confusing "Full of Beans" with "Full of sxxx" (or "full of it" for short).

And one needs to remember that most English words entered the Japanese language from gthe mid 1800s onwards.

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Poruno

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Or AV

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FightingVikingApr. 05, 2013 - 04:47PM JST "Klaxon," Is most probably from the French "klaxonner" which actually means the same thing. A part from that, I must have been here far too long - nothing on this list "amazes" me !

No Klaxon is a brand name for a horn that was used in the early 1900s on cars and bicycles. They were in use in the United States until the 1920s. The last identifiable use would be the submarine alarms during WWII. As I said, you have to figure the time frame when the word was introduced to Japan.

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'Claim' seems very natural to me. I hear it a lot on TV in the context of making a complaint. I've never heard anyone actually say 'laundromat', even though I do see it on signs sometimes. I always just say 'laundry'. My mother still says 'klaxon', heheh.

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Me and the mrs can't wait to stay at a LODGING HOME on our next trip to Japan later this year. Once there, we plan to ski all day and roast marshmellows and drink ovaltine by the fireplace while laying on the bearskin rug at night. I just hope they have wifi.

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Whenever there is a need to mention the word crab in my house, I ALWAYS add the prefix kani to it. That's right folks, KANI CRAB. Can you handle it?!

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Although not an English loan word, arubaito from the German word for work, arbeit is a nice one.

I have asked people countless times why beer is called biiru but a beer garden is called bia gaaden. The German brought the beer but drinking it on top of a building was an Anglo invention...?

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@Knox

ビール is from Dutch. Minor point, but those tulip folk are very proud of their Heineken!

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Does anyone know if there's a reference work on this subject, i.e., a dictionary? Maybe a reference web site would be easier to maintain, since I suspect this changes rapidly...

@OssanAmerica "full of beans" in the Midwest US can have either meaning based on context; full of energy or full of s***. My family et al in Wisconsin and Minnesota used it for both depending. "You're sure full of beans this morning" as you said is about perkiness, but "Aw, yer full of beans, that ain't so..." is otherwise.

@lucabrasi, I stand corrected. Looked it up, and you're right. Anyway, even I rarely use it, preferring slacks, trousers, jeans, etc.

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Everyone seems to have forgotten:

karute (medical chart) I believe it is derived from German

kosuto-doun (cost down, or cost reduction) I can't stand it when Japanese use this phrase when speaking English.

saifutee doraibingu (safety driving) or safe driving.

my ka- (my car) Means one's own car or private car (as opposed to a company car or rental car)

I'm sure there are hundreds of other good examples...

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ハウステンボス (Haustenbosu) for the Huis Ten Bosch "amusement park" in Nagasaki is a nice bastardization.

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Oh, I forgot:

pa-to (part) Part-time work.

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Andrew could you clear this up: is LAMEN to be spelled in English and spoken in English as LAMEN or the wrong way of RAMEN? In fact, the Chinese who coined the term say LA-MIEN or LAMEN. And the Japanese also SAY LAMEN. so why is is spelled RAMEN. Do they call LONDON as RONDON?

also: what about HANDERU for steering wheel and ATAMA CONGREE for stupid and ATAMA SHORTO for crazy?

In Taiwan a concrete delivery truck that turns in circles on top is called NAMA KON, fresh concrete!

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smithinjapan: Not really the same thing, because most drinking parties, as minor or major as they may be, are usually meticulously organized events. I've never heard Hiroshi say, "Let's go have a drinking party after work", but you know full well there are plenty of drinking parties going on under the cherry trees as we speak (well, in the daytime, anyway).

Sorry, but I'm missing the point of your post. Unlike you, while here in Japan, I've heard it said numerous times, both before and after the "drinking party". And if by meticulously organized, you mean someone made a phone call to book a table, yes, that's how organized most of the ones I've gone to have been and no, I've still never heard a native speaker - who hasn't lived here - say it. On the other hand, no matter how much planning has gone into a "drinking party" back home, I've never heard anyone refer to it that way. All I've ever heard is "we went drinking" or "we had a birthday / surprise / retirement, etc. party for him".

Back to the supposedly meticulous planning for a second. I think that it's easy to think that they are meticulously planned for a number of reasons: 1) At work, it's usually the new workers who have to make the reservations and they usually have no clue what they're doing and are often nervous about talking to higher ups, 2) The establishments usually have set menus and time limits so you're all getting the same thing and all starting and finishing at the same time. Everyone knows this so everyone pretty much has to show up on time and leave at the same time, making it look like the guy who booked the reservation did a lot of planning, 3) At work in particular, Japanese are good at making something simple seem like it's really complicated and challenging and that it was necessary to put tons of hours into it when in reality, sending a mass email and a making few phone calls were all that was done.

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Xeno23Apr. 07, 2013 - 12:58PM JST @OssanAmerica "full of beans" in the Midwest US can have either meaning based on context; full of energy or full of >s***. My family et al in Wisconsin and Minnesota used it for both depending. "You're sure full of beans this morning" as >you said is about perkiness, but "Aw, yer full of beans, that ain't so..." is otherwise.

Interesting. Not so on the East Coast. But it seems like you folks use "beans" similar to the way "heck" for "hell". Which sure is more Midwest and civilized than the East Coast where we're pretty crude language wise. We don't even say what the hell we just say WTF. LOL

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Ha Ha!!! This is great!! I saw "my kaa-" (my car) up there, don't forget My Car's evil twin, "my koppu" (my cup) -- I've never heard anyone say "my mug."

Also, what list on this kind of subject would be complete without the masterpiece of butchered English......

The Mama-Chari!!!!!!

Of course, short for Mother's Chariot loosely translated to "an over-sized meandering bicycle with a large basket for groceries nad one or two baby seats. Optional equipment includes a holder for an umbrella/parasol and cover sleeves/gloves over the handle bar grips."

Let's Mama-Chari!!!!

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I was always under the impression that "mama chari" was an abbreviated combination of "mama" and "charinko", slang for bicycle. I don't think it has anything to do with Ben Hur.

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I like "sai-fu"= wallet. I always have a mental image of someone carrying a safe when I hear it.

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Ya, 'mama chari' is from 'charinko'.

They use it to refer to something that is occurring, or has occurred, something happened or something happened.

'It means 'something out of the ordinary', a delay, an accident, or in a good sense, something unexpected that broke up the days' work, or some other good event that got everyone's attention.

One that still bewilders me today is "purasu arufa" (plus alpha)

It means 'plus an indeterminate amount' , can refer to time or money (when you get an estimate for something).

Platform is a simple two-syllable word.

Well, not in katakana, in which it would be 'pururattoho-mu', much easier to just say the last two syllables. Same for 'steering wheel' . 'Wheel' alone is three...'hoiru'.

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I don't hear it much these days, but one that really amused me when I came here was "jasuto-miito" ("just meet"), used to mean "exactly fitting", which apparently came from a baseball coaching expression for hitters: "just meet the ball". But students would say things that sounded like "I was just meat for the job," which confused the hell out of me. Actually, a lot of the baseball Janglish sounds pretty strange: "1-base" for a single, "2-base" for a double, etc. And for the longest time I thought "anda" (安打, "hit safely")was supposed to be "under", which I couldn't figure out at all, until I saw the kanji for it.

Another one I mis-heard for a long time was 梅雨前線 ("baiu-zensen", "plum rain front" - a rainy-season weather front causing increased precipitation) which I heard as "bio-zensen". I was familiar with "zensen" as a weather front, but couldn't imagine what "bio-" was supposed to refer to, again until I finally saw the kanji.

@Kapuna: speaking of which, you do know that 財布"saifu" is natively Japanese (or at least Sino-Japanese) and not derived from the English "safe", though, right? Not a bad mnemonic device to remember the word, though!

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"suka-jan": short for "Yokosuka jumper" = US-military style aviator's jacket, usually with elaborate embroidery on the back.

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ASS CORD - i've never had so much fun buying an earth cable for my oven.

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Many, many students over the years have mistakenly believed that "baito" (shortened from arubaito, for the German arbeit, "work, labor") was an English word. "Randoseru" ... "gerende" ... Actually, in my experience a lot of Japanese speakers assume that if a word is written in katakana in Japanese and is not obviously onomatopoeia, it must be English.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

'purattoho-mu' sorry 'bout that. I would love editing capability here...

"bio-zensen"

Yes, and that sounds scary , doesn't it?

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Himajin,

Regarding "wheel" pronounced as "hoiru" the same thing is made with "white" being pronounced "hoaito".

I always found Julianne Moore's last mame being pronounced "mua" instead of "mooru" or "mooa" somewhat puzzling. She's American, no?

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

I think that the most well-known abbreviation is TEREBI that refers to television. In Japan no one call it television.

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"Consento" would have been the only one to totally throw me. We use "electrical outlet" or more commonly just "outlet". The others I could work out.

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Regarding "wheel" pronounced as "hoiru" the same thing is made with "white" being pronounced "hoaito".

Yes. Someone upthread posted that 'steering wheel' is 3 syllables and no different from 'handoru', but with 'wheel' being three on its own, my point was that 'steering wheel' ends up being about 8. :-D

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I like how Japanese refer to "soda" or "soft drinks" as JUICE, when there is little or NO fruit juice whatsoever. 50% or more you can call it juice. Then if it has less than 50% or 10% it would be considered a "soft DRINK" Calpis and Sprite and other sugary drinks are NOT juices.

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Consent - konsento

This is a weird one.

Yes, it may be weird, but 10 seconds of research and the writer would have found out that it means "concentric plug". If this is intended to be an informative article, at least give the meaning!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I like how Japanese refer to "soda" or "soft drinks" as JUICE

This drives me bonkers, totally bonkers, can't stand it. Yamete choudai!!

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I like how Japanese refer to "soda" or "soft drinks" as JUICE This drives me bonkers, totally bonkers, can't stand it. Yamete choudai!!

But that's just how languages interact. People "borrow" a word from another group of people and give it a new meaning.

"Chocolate", for example, comes from the Nahuatl for "bitter water", i.e. a drink. But you don't get Aztecs coming on here moaning about it when we use it for a solid.

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@luca

I know that, yes, But this thread is NOT about the Aztecs.

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Some gairaigo derived from German: Randoseru from Ranzen (school kid's backpack) Gerende from Schigelände (ski piste) Sutokku from Schistock (ski pole) Ryukkusakku or ryukku from Rucksack (Backpack) Aizen from Steigeisen (crampon, climbing iron) Suriipingubaggu (sleeping bag) has a German competitor in the shuraafuzakku (Schlafsack) enerugisshu from energisch (energetic) Karute from Karte (card) with medical records affixed to a patient's bed Gipusu from Gips (gypsum or plastercast)

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There's no such thing as a plug socket. There's a plug, which you plug into a socket, and there's a socket, that you plug a plug into.

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In the U.K. Baby car = pram Order made = tailor-made

Also, we never say plug socket. We should say socket, but we often say plug when referring to the socket.

I'm from the UK and I would say pram for very young babies, after which it's a buggy.

Also, I always say plug socket. I guess these things vary within countries too!

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That quote above didn't work well.... oops!

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May I add that "anything that looks like German" is derived from Dutch and most of those were introduced during Japan's closed-border policy with just the Dutch being in Dejima.

Nice one would be the word: "Messu" being used for a "scalpel" or surgical knife. The Dutch word for "knife" is "mes" which is the original. The Dutch adopted "scalpel" for a surgical knife later on though.

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Yes, it may be weird, but 10 seconds of research and the writer would have found out that it means "concentric plug". If this is intended to be an informative article, at least give the meaning!

The article DID inform that "consento" means "electrical outlet". Where the Japanese got the word from is pretty much irrelevant unless you want to comment that apparently even the Japanese have trouble with identifying their male and female connectors. A "concentric plug" goes INTO a "consento".

May I add that "anything that looks like German" is derived from Dutch and most of those were introduced during Japan's closed-border policy with just the Dutch being in Dejima.

I've been told that アルバイト is directly taken from the German word for "work, job" (arbeit).

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As a second language English speaker I find the "Japanese English" funny, that's because I have to learn the pronunciation in English (which for some Spanish speaking people is kinda complicated) and I realize that their English word are actually an onomatopoeia (yeah we have the same word in Spanish but take off the last o and change the i for the y), a construct from the Japanese syllables of the English pronunciation of the word.

Some basic tips are: Since the only letter that they can pronounce alone (without a vowel) is n, usually a word which ens in a consonant will end with "o" or "u"... Example: Kiss = kisu ball = boru beer = biiru word = wordo (i'll be back in this one)

The other thing is that some combined letters are difficult in Japanese, for example the combinations:, br, bl, dr, dl, pr, pr. This becomes double when the combination is with an "L". It took me while to realize that "dorama" was actually "drama" or that handoru came from "handle" And, coming back to "word" actually they use "worudo" it just they pronounce the "u" fast and softly sometimes it is not noticeable ("notishiaburu")

It would be more interesting and article where original Japanese words are in the world, for example: karaoke tsunami origami And Japanese try to use an English word to explain it I don't recall Spanish words used in Japanese, with exception of "pan" (that I think it is referred as "bread" and not a kitchen tool (like "sauce pan")

A little off-topic: The thing with "sankyu" is that Japanese get off very easily with the "s" at the beginning, when the teach us the sound for the combination "Th" people from Latin America in general have problems with this one, one is when the sound is a soft "d" and when it sounds like a "z", but it is not a common "z" it is a letter pronounced with your tongue between the teeth (ohhh try to say "teeth", "month", "tooth", " twentieth") to us it is a nightmare...

I find language discussions so alluring, unfortunately my knowledge of languages is only at aficionado level....( and yes I did try to use other words with different roots in this phrase)

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Does anyone know the derivation of the word "ランドセル (randoseru)", the school packs used by Japanese children? It sounds like a loan word to me, but nobody I know can confirm that.

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but i'm from chicago and we use take out to refer to fast food and to go is if you order from an eat-in restaurant like olive garden.i live in atlanta now and they do the same. when i hear key holder i think of a little black wallet style case that holds several keys. it has snap closures and 3-4 key rings on the inside. my grandpa always carried one. . gas stations back in the day were called filling stations in the us. i have never heard the term gasoline stand. i was born in the midwest but currently live in the south, and it was as if southenors spoke an entirely different language. they call soda pop drinks, up north we use drinks to refer to alcohol. they call ladies handbags pocketbooks and we use purses. they use tote to mean carry, and we use tote to mean a box or bag that you store stuff in. it's funny how language changes over time, and by region. my mom says flash drive or jump drive,i say usb stick, and my teenage nephew says memory stick to refer to a portable computer memory devices.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

When I lived in Japan, USBs or memory sticks were called "easy discs." Sometimes I'll still call one an easy disc, and people look at me like I am nuts!

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smithinjapan quoted me:

Moondog: "Here's one that I use in English because I don't think there is an English equivalent: "San-kyu jiko?" (Thank you car accident)"

And replied:

Probably because in most languages people do not express thanks for that kind of event. :)

Actually, there are no thanks expressed for the accident. A "Thank You jiko" (sankyu jiko) is an accident where a car in a driveway is waiting to pull into the street while traffic is stopped in front of it. When the traffic starts to move, a driver in the street motions for the car in the driveway to go ahead and pull out and--while pulling into traffic and waving "Thank you"--a motor cycle or scooter moving at high speed in the parking or bike lane plows into his/her car.

Such things happen in other countries but as far as I know there is no word or label for that kind of accident.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Two of my favorites are "naitaa," or "nighter," referring to a nighttime baseball game. Also "orai, orai!" meaning "alright alright," but only used when backing up or parking a car... And what about "rabu hoteru"?

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theywilllbedone, it's from 'ransel', Dutch for 'backpack'.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

@Joice

I don't recall Spanish words used in Japanese, with exception of "pan" (that I think it is referred as "bread" and not a kitchen tool (like "sauce pan"

Japanese "pan" is from the Portuguese "pao". Almost all "Spanish" words in Japanese are Portuguese.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

My students often say "mansion" when referring to their apartment or flat. When I first heard it, I thought I was teaching wealthy students! :-)

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"O-sake" being translated as "rice wine" is really annoying. Alcohol made from fermented grains is called BEER. Alcohol made from fermented fruit is called WINE. So, "O-sake" is RICE BEER because rice is a grain.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Well, it's not exactly either beer or wine. However, as the alcohol content is far higher than beer, perhaps that's why it's translated as 'rice wine'...

"Sake is sometimes referred to in English-speaking countries as rice wine. However, unlike wine, in which alcohol is produced by fermenting sugar that is naturally present in grapes and other fruits, sake is produced by means of a brewing process more like that of beer. To make beer or sake, the sugar needed to produce alcohol must first be converted from starch.

The brewing process for sake differs from the process for beer, in that for beer, the conversion from starch to sugar and from sugar to alcohol occurs in two discrete steps. But when sake is brewed, these conversions occur simultaneously. Furthermore, the alcohol content differs between sake, wine, and beer. Wine generally contains 9%–16% ABV,[3] while most beer contains 3%–9%, and undiluted sake contains 18%–20% (although this is often lowered to about 15% by diluting with water prior to bottling)."

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Great Story JT here are our additions so far, so many but har to think of just at the moment. .

Location Free - rokeshion furii. To work from any place / location.

Free Address - furii adoresu. To be able to use - any office desk available.

Hamburg - hamubarg. The meat with out with out the bun.

Terabi. - terabi - TV

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Geman Potato Jaman Potato -- Potato Wedges Grilla - Gorilla Grill. Love Hotel. Lub hotel - Hotel rened by the hour, not for Business or vacations. Soap Land - Sopu rando. Redlight district. Bussroom - Basuroumu Bathroom - Toilet.

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Gpan. Zipan. jeans pants = Denim Jeans - Gjam . Zjan. jan is from jumper = Jeans Jacket = Denim Jacket.

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@lucabrasi

Japanese "pan" is from the Portuguese "pao". Almost all "Spanish" words in Japanese are Portuguese.

But it is still pronounced like Spanish, as for Portuguese is a cousin from Spanish, so maybe there are more since both romance languages (adding also Italian and French)

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