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  • Language difficulties!

    Hi! Scenario... I was on the Yamanote from Ikebukuro last night, I saw what would have to be the cutest girl I`ve ever seen. As there was an available seat I sat down next to her. I`ve never been one to do NANPA, but I could`ve have sworn there was mutual eye contact for an uncomfortable amount of time, so I thought what the heck - despite my violent trembling and profuse sweating. I asked the usual `Eigo o hanashimasu ka?`, to which she said no. But due to her exact likeness to Morning Musume`s Mari Yaguuchi I didn`t give up.
    Somehow, I amazed myself by complementing her on her cuteness, then asking her on a date. The answer was a resounding yes! I was quite pleased.
    But now, and here`s the thing... I can not speak Japanese. Yes, I manage to impress people with my knowledge of slang words and colloquialisms, and my timing is very good. I`ve listened to movie dialogue and read Shingo Katori`s `bera bera` Japanese book over and over. But as to my knowledge of Japanese... there really is no knowledge. Ask me the difference between WA and GA, and I would have lost track at `konnichi wa`. The problem is this girl thinks I speak fluently, so now I`m in a pickle.
    We`ll date next Friday.
    Basically, I`m asking... have any of you ever been in this situation? What did you do? More importantly, what should I do? This is a lucky opportunity, but one I`m really not prepared for. Any anecdotes and/or advice would be hugely appreciated!

    JAMES

  • #2
    Re: Language difficulties!

    take her somewhere public but not too crowded so you can fumble through a conversation, and not draw loads of attention. it can be a little embarrising for the both of you having people staring or overhearing and snickering. and also, i'm sure you can speak japanese better than you think. unless you just walked up to her and said 'you're cute, wanna go out sometime'. you must have talked to her for a few minutes. you can go along way with just vocabulary.

    by the way, japanese people don't even know the difference between wa and ga.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Language difficulties!

      Just be your self!

      Find somewhere to go where you need not have to talk so much. Think of things that you can look at together, rather than talk about together. And when/ if you eat or drink, use the menus with pictures.

      Remember, her reading ability will be way ahead of her speaking ability, and she also probably speaks much more than she let on to you.

      And when you do speak, keep it simple and clear, as the required particles are absent and will make it harder for her to understand.

      And ENJOY yourself next week.

      That's the whole point, it is not a grammar test!

      :-)

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      • #4
        Re: Language difficulties!

        Ah, gee... thanks guys! You`re like reassuring big brothers and sisters!
        I really don`t think she speaks ANY English, or has any wish too. I was just worried she will realise my ability is not as good the first impression led her to believe, and this may create problems and maybe even frustrate her somewhat. But thanks, I really do feel a whole lot better! And I`ll try to enjoy myself.

        JAMES

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        • #5
          Re: Language difficulties!

          JAMES,

          You are re-writing my own history. Met her, liked her, hit on her even though I usually don't like that approach, and spent the next seven years together. Take a dictionary, and get her to get one, too.. Its called dictionary diving. Lots of giggles, embarassed silences, and Magic. Romance at its best.

          As a side benefit, virtually all of my really good Japanese I learned from her, and now I make my living based on it.

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          • #6
            Re: Language difficulties!

            Cheers Kurogane! But what happened then?

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            • #7
              Re: Language difficulties!

              Alcohol, but don't push it on her, get her started on it at dinner and try to keep her going. It'll help astonomically with her english, all mys students love to use their vocabs once they're tanked. Plusd she'll be easier to lead to the love hotel afterwards.

              The dictionary is a great idea too, and take a blank notebook to write a few words down. Don't overdo it, just a few words, you dont have to finish it in one night. It shows you're interested, and you are more likely to remember it, so you can use it that night.

              An plan ahead. Make sure you've got a few activities in mind, especially ones that don't require ongoing conversation as TH said. Preferably you'll have a few up your sleeve and can give her a choice.

              Lastly, get her to the love hotel. Ooooh and Aaaah are the same in any language

              Markos

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              • #8
                Re: Language difficulties!

                periods of silence do not make native japanese people uncomfortable?
                to speak less is to show more intelligence (and tact)?

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                • #9
                  Re: Language difficulties!

                  Markos,
                  U R dirty dirty boy. Kurogane much like.

                  JBS,
                  WHat happened was both too young, both too stubborn, girl leave Canada to return to hometown (middle of nowhere small town), and idiot Kurogane not follow. Probably all for the best in the end, as small town life would have killed Kurogane's insouciant happiness. We still get along fine, for what that is worth. Both happy, just not together.

                  Just remember, it doesn't always work out, but sometimes it does. Good Luck man.

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                  • #10
                    Re: Language difficulties!

                    kurogane,

                    You are Canadian? I thought that you were English.

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                    • #11
                      Re: Language difficulties!

                      He was foolin ya with his wee Scottish accent!

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                      • #12
                        so James what happened to the girl and the date you went on??

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by JBS3009
                          Basically, I`m asking... have any of you ever been in this situation? What did you do? More importantly, what should I do? This is a lucky opportunity, but one I`m really not prepared for. Any anecdotes and/or advice would be hugely appreciated!
                          well, j-bones, being that this bookerish fellow is the best japanese speaker he knows i can offer no good advice. HOWEVER, i can say that you should refrain from doing what many Others do: try to keep from whoring yourself out for the english language abilities that you may or may not have. that being said, this cute girl, she speaks no english but by and by she may want you for your english. native english speakers are so cool, after all. now, sir, easy it would be for you to say, hey baby i'll give you an english lesson, just come over to my house and the first word you'll learn is my name over and over and over again. rise above that. you probably get that all night long at your cool little host job which is why you don't really speak haponese. i'm hypothesizing so don't get angry if i'm wrong. be it your task to just say no to degredation and confultization and do what is right. relationships built on the exchange of english for sex can't (and don't) last long...
                          that being said i once had a thing for a chinese girl who was good at neither japanese nor english. i was good at japanese but not at chinese....things fizzled fast. if there's no convesation how can things progress past a certain point? exactly.

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                          • #14
                            it depend on the purpose you want to be with her.
                            is it for sex only?
                            or you want to start a serious relationship?

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by BURLY
                              so James what happened to the girl and the date you went on??
                              Burls, you're asking me that after TWO years? How the fock am I supposed to remember that!? I can't even recall my hairstyle choices, my taste in couture, or occupation from that time. All I know is that I AM VERY surprised that I even considered dating someone that resembled Morning Musume's Mari Yaguuchi.

                              Originally posted by Booker
                              well, j-bones, being that this bookerish fellow is the best japanese speaker he knows i can offer no good advice
                              J-Bones!? Is that in reference to my 179.5cm, 69.7kg frame? Careful there, according to your latest self-descriptions, I outweigh you by over 30 pounds, dood!

                              Anyway thanks for that, but after two years of infiltrating the non-English speaking under-ground Harajuku female maid cosplaying culture, the above-ground Shibuya female trance-club culture and the on-beach Kanagawa female Japanese reggae culture respectfully (as well as "working" in Kabukicho since October '04, where there is absolutely no knowledge of the world outside of 東新宿), has given me this conclusion... that NO-ONE in the WORLD has progressed in conversational Japanese faster and better than ME (and I say this with as much conviction that NO-ONE in the WORLD likes Jazz Music). Hell, I make a living out of speaking Japanese now (though admittedly, much in the way Bobby Ologun used to... but I swear he copied ME).

                              Cheers guys, I'll be back in Tokyo soon. The Peach/Mango cassis' will be on me. Now, into the bin with this ridiculous thread!

                              Comment

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