Monthly Archives: June 2014

Japanese podcast highlight: 青春あるでひど

I decided to take a break from my usual lineup of Japanese podcasts and download a few episodes of a podcast I’d heard once or twice before, “青春あるでひど”. The title is made up the word 青春 (seishun), which means roughly means “youth” and あるでひど which is probably a reference to アルデヒド (aldehyde) which is a common… Read More »

Book review: “数学者の言葉では” (In the words of a mathematician) by 藤原 正彦 (Masahiko Fujiwara)

This book I picked up at the same time as 影の現象学, and the two works are similar in that I misunderstood both to be fiction when in fact they were nonfiction academic books. This book is a collection of short essays from the mathematician and popular essayist Masahiko Fujiwara, whose parents were also popular authors.… Read More »

Three great Japanese verbs about the mind: 覚える(oboeru), 思い出す(omoidasu), and 思いつく(omoitsuku)

For this post I’ve chosen three Japanese verbs which I think will be very useful for the beginner Japanese student. All of them relate to thought and/or memory in some way. 覚える (おぼえる)is a verb which can be used to mean  ‘to learn’, or ‘to remember’, depending on the context. One of the most common ways… Read More »

Foreign language learning and the rebirth of a new you

The path of learning a foreign language, especially when self-taught, is fraught with many challenges and difficulties, and one should always expect a minimum of several years for any reasonable level of fluency. Fortunately, all the hard work is (eventually) rewarded with satisfaction in this great achievement, better appreciation of another country’s culture, and increased opportunities for careers… Read More »

Understanding in Japanese: 分かる(wakaru)

Learning Japanese can be quite tricky for those just starting out. First you learn some basics, like how objects are followed by the を particle. Then, you learn 分かる (wakaru) means ‘to understand’ in Japanese. Your first instinct would probably be to try and write a sentence like this: 僕は日本語を分かる [Wrong!] However this sentence is grammatically… Read More »