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Thread: Japanese from Zero!

  1. #41
    Senior Member kamukamuume's Avatar
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    Default Re: Japanese from Zero!

    Quote Originally Posted by Wakatta
    I suppose I don't hear a lot of guys use that in an informal context. I just remain weirded out somehow by 俺 and 僕. Probably because I'm still on some level stubbornly trying to translate them. Even without that, though, I haven't quite wrapped my head around using a different word for I based on your age and gender. That just seems crazy. What, do you wake up one day and start talking about yourself as わし? (Although come to think of it ... it seems like guys from a very young age call themselves 僕 or 俺. ... still, the very notion of changing your word for "I" based on context...I can't get it. I'm going to have to get rid of this hangup to get better at Japanese.)
    yeah, it was one of the first things I was corrected on when I came here to study abroad a few years ago. I can't say for sure that there aren't guys who don't call themselves 私、but based on what I've been told and what I've heard, 俺 is the most common, and 僕 is the best if you don't want to risk being seen as vulgar /childish.

    on the topic of the old man thing, that is a really good question. I wonder about it, too. either people are like that lipsynching youtube guy, recognize they're old, and figure they should act like it; or the word わし itself is just retro. if you watch '50s sitcoms in English you'll hear, "That's swell!" (that's great!) and "No foolin'?" (seriously?); maybe it's kind of like that.

    Quote Originally Posted by Wakatta
    Furthermore, my impression is that 俺 is for macho guys trying to sound aggressive or full of themselves and 僕 is for little boys or men trying to self-deprecate or cutesify themselves. I'm not sure I want to sound like either.

    But I suppose that's a misconception...I mean, I hear ordinary guys talking about themselves as 俺. Maybe I'm thinking of 俺様 or something. Since the textbooks usually use 私 or maybe 僕, it might be that I have a false association of 俺 with growling anime characters. 貴様! 殺すぜ!
    this is one thing that textbooks missed the boat on. Genki, for example, is really great, but I think it doesn't sufficiently explain words like 私. my japanese teachers mostly said that 僕 was okay to use in class, and yeah, I end up hearing 俺 俺 俺 all the time.

    meanwhile, some of the male teachers at my school were like "yeah I use 私 all the time," but I think it's one of those things like Ampersand was saying the other day: people can't describe their own speech patterns that well. I could probably count on one hand the times I've heard guys use 私 in an informal setting without being homosexual (not joking; gay people can use very effeminate speech here) or doing it for effect.

  2. #42
    ERRRRRGG Avocado's Avatar
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    Default Re: Japanese from Zero!

    I've heard a lot of guys here use 私, and while I wouldn't say it's the majority. It's certainly the most neutral, which I like. Whenever someone refers to themselves as 僕 I kind of want to punch them in the face, but that's just because I have bad associations with the word due to someone I knew awhile back.

    Guys saying 私 is perfectly fine, and since we're all foreigners anyway no one's going to care that much. Maybe it's a regional thing?

  3. #43
    VIP UPGRAYEDD's Avatar
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    Default Re: Japanese from Zero!

    Haha no.

    私 is the safe word
    俺 makes you come off as a douche
    僕 makes you come off as a 13 year old zit-faced boy or a huge homo and douche
    You see, gentlemen, a pimp's love is very different from a square's...
    (郷に入っては郷に従え.)

  4. #44
    Senior Member kamukamuume's Avatar
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    Default Re: Japanese from Zero!

    Quote Originally Posted by UPGRAYEDD
    Haha no.

    私 is the safe word
    俺 makes you come off as a douche
    僕 makes you come off as a 13 year old zit-faced boy or a huge homo and douche
    http://news.ameba.jp/trend-gyao/2009/04/37426.html

    http://detail.chiebukuro.yahoo.co.jp...il/q1114367186

    it might indeed vary from place to place, but I really haven't heard 私 used much with friends who're your age. as for the douche thing, looking around at polls, it seems like 俺 is not only the most common, but the 一人称 that girls like the most.

    where're you getting your info? I honestly haven't seen much that'd back it up.

  5. #45
    VIP UPGRAYEDD's Avatar
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    Default Re: Japanese from Zero!

    This is all just personal experience.

    The people I've met and respect the most use straight watashi. The ones I like the least use boku. The ore guys are a bunch of tough guys who try too hard.

    Another factor and the biggest one for us is that we were all raised outside of Japanese society and will probably never fully understand the right context to use these words in the first place. It's similar to cringing when Japanese folks try to use English slang. It just doesn't work most of the time and like it or not it brings a lot of undue attention to yourself. So I just fall on watashi.
    You see, gentlemen, a pimp's love is very different from a square's...
    (郷に入っては郷に従え.)

  6. #46
    Backwater Blonde Rachel1404's Avatar
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    Default Re: Japanese from Zero!

    Thanks for the advice I took the plunge and sheeled out for the textbook, workbook and answer key

    And now as you were..

  7. #47
    Senior Member Virus FM's Avatar
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    Default Re: Japanese from Zero!

    I knew a Japanese guy who came here for study abroad, and he picked up the most thuggish 5 years ago ghetto way of speaking. It was the most cringe worthy thing I could think of besides for the youtube videos of black Americans in Japan rapping in Japanese.

    And I really fear coming off like that in Japanese, but I'd still use ore anytime I wasn't in a professional or scholastic setting. Watashi is stiff, and I'd only use boku in a charming, tongue in cheek way.

    There's plenty worse you can do than use ore around people you hang out with. Like omitting particles completely (which is some kind of equivalent to sounding thuggish with things like "dat they problem, I gots mine") and ending sentences with ze hahaha.

  8. #48

    Default Re: Japanese from Zero!

    I still can't get the boku/ore thing. I really think boku tends to come off a little childish and I'd say most of the Japanese men I know use ore. Any girls I've asked tell me to use boku probably because it comes off less "tough guy." The guys I've asked seem to think either one is fine.

  9. #49
    VIP UPGRAYEDD's Avatar
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    Default Re: Japanese from Zero!

    Boku has an underlying meaning of being submissive. Ore has the opposite, strong or arrogant depending on how much of an actual badass you are.

    Watashi is 100% neutral. I like that.
    You see, gentlemen, a pimp's love is very different from a square's...
    (郷に入っては郷に従え.)

  10. #50
    Али Димаев AliDimayev's Avatar
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    Default Re: Japanese from Zero!

    I took Japanese in high school, but I've forgotten most of it. I hope it will come back a bit when I do arrive in Japan. ::crosses fingers::

  11. #51
    SPACE MONKEY MAFIA vdog's Avatar
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Virus FM View Post
    I knew a Japanese guy who came here for study abroad, and he picked up the most thuggish 5 years ago ghetto way of speaking. It was the most cringe worthy thing I could think of besides for the youtube videos of black Americans in Japan rapping in Japanese.

    And I really fear coming off like that in Japanese, but I'd still use ore anytime I wasn't in a professional or scholastic setting. Watashi is stiff, and I'd only use boku in a charming, tongue in cheek way.

    There's plenty worse you can do than use ore around people you hang out with. Like omitting particles completely (which is some kind of equivalent to sounding thuggish with things like "dat they problem, I gots mine") and ending sentences with ze hahaha.
    I LOVE adding "ze" to sentences

    A surfer-type told me I should use it, I didn't really trust him because he seemed to have something up his sleeve when telling me how much the word "suits" me, but it got some laughs when I used it and then the other Japanese people started using it when we talked, like some sort of inside joke, I guess.

    I don't really know what it means, I just pretend it is like adding "dude" to a sentence but more assertive. I saw a dictionary definition that seemed to match that more or less. It's not something I'll use outside of friends though, since, like others have said, foreigners rarely use slang correctly.

  12. #52
    Senior Member Virus FM's Avatar
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    Default Re: Japanese from Zero!

    Yeah I think it's something like "dude, man, bro..." or "yo, ay, yeah?". Not really any of those exactly, but something you add to a sentence to give it more casual or edgy tones.

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