Taking the world less travelled

Writing Katakana – ア to オ

Posted by on Apr 4, 2008 in Language | 0 comments

It’s カタカナ time! Katakana is the part of the Japanese Writing System that I perhaps have the most trouble with – I still have to sound out each syllable, and I can barely write it – only words that I know well. Even sounding out words is difficult – as often I’m trying to make out some kind of English word, something that I shouldn’t do as not all Katakana words are even Japanese-a-fied English. But that is another bag of worms.

I use the same method as Hiragana learning – associating Katakana with things of similar shapes. I’m not sure where this method came from, as I remember using this back in primary school, as well as more recently in University. If you know where this method came from, please tell me!

As for getting the Katakana into my head, I plan on working the same way as I did with hiragana, and currently kanji. Write with them whenever I can. I don’t encounter them as much as I do hiragana and kanji, one problem, but there are some good sources out there which feature a lot.

Enough blabbering, let’s begin:

Lesson 1 – ア to オ。

ア – A
A person sticking out their tounge and saying “Ah“. A picture of a mouth with a tounge poking out.

イ - I
An eagle. I guess this one is a stretch, but the way I think of it is a english “I” with out the bottom stroke. I seem to remember this because “E” looks like an “I”. Confusing but some how it works. Maybe eagle will work for you.

ウ - U
An old woman carrying a heavy pack on her back. “Oomph!” Can you see the woman bending over with the pack on her back? Be careful not to confuse this one with “ワ” – “wa”.

エ – E
The curtains close at the end of the performance. Image of closed curtains. I always somehow remember that the “e” looks like an “I”.

オ – O
And old orange tree with a broken branch. It is helpful to think of this as the kanji for tree: 木 with one “branch” missing. I guess it’s an orange tree to reinforce the “o” sound.

To be continued in our next thrilling episode of Writing Katakana
Katakana – カ to コ »

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An Integrated Approach to Intermediate Japanese: First Impressions

Posted by on Apr 3, 2008 in Language | 0 comments

An Integrated Approach To Intermediate Japanese by Akira Miura and Naomi Hanaoka McGloin
I recently borrowed this book out from my University library, and after having it for two weeks, I decided to buy this as the next step in my Japanese studies.

I’m half way through Japanese for Everyone, and I find this book right for my level. This actually makes me more impressed with Japanese For Everyone – it is a good textbook and takes you far. I’m finding that I will learn a grammar point in one book, and then a week or so later the same grammar point is covered in the other one. Why do I have both then? I like seeing examples from both texts. I get more vocabulary from both texts. Integrated also has harder kanji and more reading passages.

Every chapter begins with a section called “Culture Notes“. These are little paragraphs in English about something to do with Japanese culture. For instance, in the first chapter they talk about “How to Address Someone”. In chapter six the culture note is about restaurants.

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Who’s Subbing What: Spring 2008 – Part 3

Posted by on Mar 31, 2008 in Reviews | 0 comments

Following on from Part 1 and Part 2, here is the final instalment of Who’s Subbing What: Spring 2008 Spring Edition.

Rookies ROOKIES
Airing: Saturdays from the 19th of April
Staring: Sato Ryuta, Ichihara Hayato, Koide Keisuke

The story revolves around a high school teacher and coach that tries to reform delinquents by having them join the baseball team

Lots of familiar faces in this one! And a lack of buttons. This is going to be hard and soft subbed by TimeLesSub & Skewed Studios.

bullet GOKUSEN 3
Airing: Saturdays from the 19th of April
Staring: Nakama Yukie, Namase Katsuhisa, Enami Kyoko

In the “I-can’t-believe-they’re-doing-another-season” file, this is being soft subbed by Henna_Sapporo and hard subbed by SARS-Fansubs.

bullet RYOKITEKI NA KANOJO
Airing: Sundays from the 20th of April
Staring: Kusanagi Tsuyoshi, Tanaka Rena, Matsushita Nao

Based on the hit South Korean movie, My Sassy Girl, the character backgrounds and plot details will be changed for the drama. While the protagonists in the original film were college students, this time the pair will be a marine biology professor, Masaki Saburo, and Takami Riko, an aspiring writer.

To be hard subbed by Eternal Fansubs.

And that’s the news, you’re up to date. I was going to have a poll, but I’m having trouble finding a poll system I like. So, poll to follow.

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Who’s Subbing What: Spring 2008 – Part 2

Posted by on Mar 30, 2008 in Reviews | 0 comments

Following on from part one, here’s more dramas that are airing next season and who subbing them.

bullet LAST FRIENDS
Airing: Thursdays from the 10th of April
Staring: Nagasawa Masami, Ueno Juri, Eita

Last Friends tackles issues that afflict the current generation. Michiru’s mother has brought a man back to their home and she is bullied at her workplace where she works as a beauty parlour assistant. She starts cohabiting with her boyfriend, a good young man who works at the Child Welfare Division and the only person who can give her emotional support, but ends up the victim of domestic violence and becomes fearful of love. The boyishly charming Ruka was a classmate of Michiru’s in junior high school. She has performed brilliantly as a motocross racer and aims to win the national championship, but as the story progresses, a deep worry that she can neither confide in her parents or close friends grows evident. Takeru is a hair and makeup artist acquainted with Ruka. He is a good confidant to females due to his kindness and perceptiveness, and finds himself attracted to Ruka but has a phobia of sex as a result of a past trauma. The three of them become house mates and through their associations with others, gain the capacity to be positive about life. – from dramawiki

This will be Hard Subbed by Kioku Fansubs.

bullet PUZZLE
Airing: Fridays from the 18th of April
Staring: Ishihara Satomi, Yamamoto Yusuke, Kimura Ryo

Misako Ayukawa, a woman in her 30s, is an English teacher with ironically poor English skills. She values herself over her students, and money over love. She displays arrogance in front of her students, but acts pleasantly around her peers and family. However, Ayukawa possesses a brilliant mind for solving puzzles. She ends up tackling various cases around the school along with 3 of her top students. – from dramawiki

Puzzle is being both Hard and Soft Subbed by Querbeet.

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Who’s Subbing What: Spring 2008 – Part 1

Posted by on Mar 27, 2008 in Reviews | 2 comments

Who’s subbing what? Let’s have a look at what is airing next season and who’s subbing what.

bullet CHANGE
Airing: Mondays from the 21st of April
Staring: Kimura Takuya, Fukatsu Eri, Abe Hiroshi

The story begins with the deaths of ruling party’s Fukuoka legislator and his eldest son, his heir apparent, in an accident. It is decided that a by-election will be held, and Kanbayashi Masaichi, the leader of the ruling party, and secretary Miyama Rika conceive the idea of fielding the second son, Asakura Keita, who had been renounced by his father.

After Keita graduated from senior high school, he went on to a university in Nagano because he wanted to live in a place with beautiful stars, and eventually became an elementary school teacher over there. Well-liked by children and satisfied with his beloved star gazing, Keita has no interest in the world of politics. However, at Rika’s persuasion and the pressure of his family, he reluctantly decides to announce his candidacy.

Upon returning to Fukuoka, Keita is given a hearty welcome by supporters. The election strategist, Nirasawa Katsutoshi, arrives there. He is guided by the notion “election is the only permitted legal war” and begins Keita’s election campaign – dramawiki

This drama is going to be Hard and Soft Subbed by Massuki

zettai002.JPGbullet ZETTAI KARESHI
Airing: Tuesdays from the 15th of April
Staring: Hayami Mokomichi, Aibu Saki, Mizushima Hiro

Izawa Riko is a temp worker in search of a boyfriend, and she ends up in possession of a “robot” known as Night Tenjo, who is programmed to be the perfect boyfriend. However, this creates a love triangle with a distinguished young man at her company who has feelings for her. – dramawiki

It’s going to be Hard and Soft Subbed by S.O.S. Fansubs.
Also just Hard Subbed by SARS-Fansubs.

bullet OSEN
Airing: Tuesdays from the 22nd of April
Staring: Aoi Yu, Uchi Hiroki, Mukai Osamu

Handa Sen is the “okami” (proprietress) of a long-standing restaurant in one of the lower parts of Tokyo. Though she is normally airheaded and loves to drink, she has an impressive mastery of a wide range skills, from cooking to ceramics to calligraphy. While the drama follows various events surrounding the restaurant, one of the series’ highlights is its illustration of Japanese food and culture. – dramawiki

Hard and Soft Subs to be made by Querbeet.

bullet HOKABEN
Airing: Wednesdays from the 16th of April
Staring: Ueto Aya, Kitamura Kazuki, Kato Shigeaki

Ueto plays Akari Domoto, an idealistic lawyer who wants to “rescue the weak.” She joins a large law office, though she is assigned to a lowly department whose only other member is her boss, who was transferred there after making a mistake during a case. – dramawiki

Hard Subbed only by Candypop Fansubs

Thank you to the subbers for all your hard work! Check back for part two of Who’s Subbing What, Spring 2008 edition :)

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I Have Hosting!

Posted by on Mar 25, 2008 in Life | 1 comment

Hello everyone! I have hositng! This is fantastic! Please bare with me as I get everything up and going again. :) I’m uploading previous posts one at a time so that I can fix broken image links etc. It’ll be slow going, but it’s good procrastination when I’m supposed to be doing university work. I’m hoping now I can update regularly. :)

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There’s Going To Be A Hana Kimi Special!

Posted by on Mar 18, 2008 in Life | 6 comments

Tokyo Graph have announced that the Hana Kimi special is confirmed. They wrote:

Tue, March 18, 2008 (4:33pm EDT)
Last summer’s “Hanazakari no Kimitachi e” drama series is returning for a one-episode special. Starring Maki Horikita, Shun Oguri, and Toma Ikuta, the show was very popular, especially among female viewers. It averaged 17.3% ratings, with the final episode reaching 21.0%.

According to Fuji TV, the special will take place half a year after the series’ end. With Osaka Gakuen getting ready for an upcoming Valentine’s Day event, Sano (Oguri) and Nakatsu (Ikuta) reflect on the final week of their last summer vacation, which falls into the timeline of the original series between episodes 7 and 8. The special also includes a graduation scene and addresses the relationship between Mizuki (Horikita) and Sano.

Filming begins on Wednesday, but no broadcast date has been specified yet.

Yay! I can’t wait :)

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