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Thread: Vagueness of ga

  1. #1
    SPACE MONKEY MAFIA vdog's Avatar
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    Default Vagueness of ga

    私が好きじゃない友達
    watashi ga suki ja nai tomodachi

    (there you go all you hepburn fools! )

    I'm told this means "The friend that I don't like" which makes sense. But when I said it I was trying to say "The friend that doesn't like me." So how can you differentiate between those two?

  2. #2
    Senior Member jeshipiyo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by vdogvictor View Post
    私が好きじゃない友達
    watashi ga suki ja nai tomodachi

    (there you go all you hepburn fools! )

    I'm told this means "The friend that I don't like" which makes sense. But when I said it I was trying to say "The friend that doesn't like me." So how can you differentiate between those two?
    For "the friend that doesn't like me," say 私のことが好きじゃない友達。 It means that they don't like you and anything about you.

    And I usually just take out が anyway because it sounds harsh or too formal sometimes. Unless you're doing this for a class?

  3. #3
    Senior Member ampersand's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by vdogvictor View Post
    So how can you differentiate between those two?
    You differentiate them in every student of Japanese's favorite way: context. If you want to say it in a way that's not vague, you can use something like 私を嫌いな友達. That'd probably get marked wrong a test, but people say it. (On the other hand, 私を好きじゃない is weird.)

    You could also use 好く, the verb that 好き is derived from, as in 私を好かない友達, but you might be accused of talking like an 80-year-old.
    "I have ... relations... with many of the students." -- Sai1

  4. #4
    SPACE MONKEY MAFIA vdog's Avatar
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    Default Re: Vagueness of ga

    So my original sentence can actually mean either way?

    Thanks for the suggestions guys.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Vagueness of ga

    Random fact: until this moment, I did not know vdogvictor's name. I just thought of him as "gesturing monkey guy".

    This is in no way a slight: it's just a distinctive icon.

  6. #6
    SPACE MONKEY MAFIA vdog's Avatar
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    Default Re: Vagueness of ga

    Haha, nice. I guess I shouldn't change my avatar then huh?

    After all this talk about personal info on these boards I wish I had a less revealing name now, so maybe it's good you didn't know :-p

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