The Suicidal Octopus

The Suicidal Octopus Logo

Now in a TINY ASS SCREEN flavour!

Ye Olde Sunken Treasure: Moonrunes Archives

grorious nipponese

¤ April 18, 2016 ¤

♬ Context in Japanese Phrases

This post pertains to: Moonrunes

Japanese is an extremely contextual language. A lot of the common phrases people know like “konnichiwa” and “arigatou gozaimasu” actually mean completely different things.

I read an example where a person went to the reception and asked to see someone. The receptionist replied with “失礼ですが”. The literal translation is “It is rude, but…” In this situation, it actually means the receptionist is asking for their name. Isn’t that strange? “shitsurei desu ga” and “sumimasen” both basically mean “excuse me,” but the former is used when asking things about the addressee. The latter is used when asking the addressee to do something.

In addition, those words like “konnichiwa” are actually shortened versions of full sentences. 今日は is actually part of a longer sentence which goes something like, “as for today, how are you?” But that’s implied by context, and now it has just turned into a greeting.

I also learned that emoji is actually a Japanese word, 絵文字! I guess it seems obvious when you know that kaomoji (顔文字) is a very obvious japanese word, but I never really thought about it.

♥ Posted at 11:51:38 am CDT

¤ January 30, 2016 ¤

♬ Ateji – AKA, “Lol, wrong reading!”

This post pertains to: Moonrunes

Yesterday I learned something called “ateji” kanji. I was looking through my music folder and as I have been studying the moonrunes for several months, I recognize many kanji used in songs.

The name of this song came up, 群青海月. I can read 海 and 月, which are sea/ocean (read as kai) and moon/month (read as getsu/gatsu). However, the romanization of the song is “Gunjou Kurage” (ultramarine jellyfish).

So here I am like “what the fuck????? How is it pronounced “kurage”????? The onyomi are kai and getsu! this doesn’t even make sense…”

I did a little research and these types of ‘irregular’ kanji are called “ateji,” where the pronunciation of the word doesn’t match the kanji’s actual readings.

Some of the common ones are:
today 今日, read as kyou, but the kanjis onyomi are “kon” and “nichi/ka”
tomorrow 明日, read as ashita, but the onyomi are “mei” and “nichi/ka”

Even the word sushi 寿司 is an ateji! The poetic word for twilight/dusk, tasogare 黄昏 is an ateji as well.

On the opposite hand, ateji are also kanji that are chosen solely phonetically, even though the meaning of the word doesn’t match the meaning of the combined kanji. if I’m understanding right, ateji characters are used for archaic ways to talk about countries, I think. In moonrunes, the kanji for america means… rice 米. This is because it is the shortened form of the ateji for America, 亜利加 which is sounded phonetically as “amerika”.

Nowadays, most instances of those kind of ateji are replaced with katakana, which is used mostly for writing foreign/borrowed words like America アメリカ.

It was very interesting! Even native moonrunes speakers often get ateji kanji wrong, too.

♥ Posted at 9:13:21 pm CDT

¤ November 11, 2015 ¤

♬ Cheap Weeaboo

This post pertains to: Moonrunes

I bought a WaniKani subscription for a year, and I found a half off coupon on reddit so the price was $50 instead of $100. Nice.

There are some annoying kanji that look really similar and I have to make mental notes to distinguish them. Fun chart!

Fucking kanji
direction/way ten thousand
stone right
cow noon
stop correct
power sword/katana
earth, soil samurai
water ice
arrow loss/error
half flat
number copy

♥ Posted at 9:57:35 am CDT

¤ May 15, 2015 ¤

♬ Lang-8

This post pertains to: Moonrunes

I signed up to a site where you write journal entries in the language you’re learning, and people correct it: Lang-8. It’s neat! I wrote my first entry and it got corrected within ten minutes!


Isn’t that just cool as hell?!

I learned で is a particle that denotes where an action is taking place!

♥ Posted at 2:54:20 pm CDT

¤ April 23, 2015 ¤

♬ Moonrunes Notes 1

This post pertains to: Moonrunes

The first kanji for both 便利 (convenient) and 使う (to use) are dangerously similar… except 便利 has a 田! It sort of looks like a B, so maybe I can use that to remember べんり??

Also, it has been many years since I first studied babby’s first katakana, but I STILL can’t tell the difference between ツ and シ. I just can’t fucking find a way to remember the difference.

And what da FUUUQ 綺麗 has the craziest kanji how the hell does anyone read this shit in tiny font

にぎやか and 元気 both mean lively. So I googled what the difference is. Apparently 元気 can only refer to a person as lively. にぎやか is more like a place. Bustling, full of people, etc.

I had that problem also with 車 and 自動車 … they both mean car but 車’s original definition was ‘wheels’ and 自動車 is more like English automobile.

♥ Posted at 8:30:38 pm CDT