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Thread: Amusing mistakes while speaking Japanese

  1. #1
    Twirling dragon Maciamo's Avatar
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    Amusing mistakes while speaking Japanese

    I guess that it has happened to any foreigners in Japan or learning Japanese to use one word instead of another similar one while trying to express yourself in nihongo. Sometimes that leads to farcical situations.

    Once, while fatigue had taken the best of my mental faculties, I wanted to say "okosanaide" (起こさないで = dont't wake her/him/me up) but said "okasanaide" (犯さないで), which means "don't rape me".

    Did anything like that ever happen to you ?

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  2. #2
    Manga Psychic PaulTB's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maciamo
    Once, while fatigue had taken the best of my mental faculties, I wanted to say "okosanaide" (起こさないで = dont't wake her/him/me up) but said "okasanaide" (犯さないで ), which means "don't rape me".

    Did anything like that ever happen to you ?
    I once used ペロペロ when I meant ペラペラ ^^;

  3. #3
    I jump to conclusions mad pierrot's Avatar
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    @ maciamo

    LOL, who did you say that to?


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    Cute and Furry Ewok85's Avatar
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    おっぱい instead of いっぱい

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    Anjin Brooker's Avatar
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    When I first arrived in Japan, I was at a restaurant flipping through my travel dictionary to order. After I ordered the waiter gave me a strange look and almost chuckled. I looked back to my dictionary and realized I'd just asked him if I could have the "fondle". Luckily, he brought me soup instead.

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    Okama XD Kama's Avatar
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    What is ベロベロ?I think it'd be a good thing to translate your own mistakes... XD

    At univeristy where in my group is about 20 people, mistakes are quite common. the funny ones that I remember are:

    ブス (ugly girl) instead of バス (bus). Luckily, it was only at lesson...

    しょ*だい (candlestand) instead of しゅ*だい (homework) [shokudai/shukudai I don't understand what's wrong it's not displaying correctly.]

    学生の男 (student's man) instead of 男の学生 (male student).

    I myself don't remember such thing happening to me.

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  7. #7
    Manga Psychic PaulTB's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kama
    What is ベロベロ?I think it'd be a good thing to translate your own mistakes... XD
    That was ペロペロ not ベロベロ.

  8. #8
    Okama XD Kama's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PaulTB
    That was ペロペロ not ベロベロ.


    Ok!! XD I didn't see properly. I'm short-sighted...

    Anyway, what does it means? I don't know onomatopoeia too well...

  9. #9
    Manga Psychic PaulTB's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kama
    I don't understand what's wrong it's not displaying correctly.
    It's a known forum glitch. (Although I don't know when it's going to get fixed).

    As a work around you can try selecting Western European encoding before typing your post.

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    to finally answer your question, Kama: ペロペロ means licking.

  11. #11
    Twirling dragon Maciamo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brooker
    When I first arrived in Japan, I was at a restaurant flipping through my travel dictionary to order. After I ordered the waiter gave me a strange look and almost chuckled. I looked back to my dictionary and realized I'd just asked him if I could have the "fondle". Luckily, he brought me soup instead.
    Didn't you confuse "chikan" 痴漢 (gropping) and "chikin" チキン (chicken) ? Good you were not a girl.

    Imagine yourself working as a waiter in a restaurant in Japan. You are learning Japanese but have just learned "chikan" today by seeing the warning in the metro. A beautiful girl comes, and without checking the menu ask you for "chikan" (actually chikin, but your ears aren't used to Japanese yet). What do you do ?

  12. #12
    rock on MikeM's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maciamo
    Imagine yourself working as a waiter in a restaurant in Japan. You are learning Japanese but have just learned "chikan" today by seeing the warning in the metro. A beautiful girl comes, and without checking the menu ask you for "chikan" (actually chikin, but your ears aren't used to Japanese yet). What do you do ?
    haha... things like that I am afraid of!

  13. #13
    Junior Member tengpow's Avatar
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    Heh, when I first started studying, my teacher asked me, "おなかすいた?" I misunderstood her and I answered "はい、おんながすき"

    A friend of mine was also in a Lawsons convenience store and asked the clerk for "うんこ,ふたつ" rather than んこ. I know there's more but I seem to be blanking at the moment. I've also got quite a collection of my Japanese student's English mistakes.

  14. #14
    Hi Keiichi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tengpow
    Heh, when I first started studying, my teacher asked me, "おなかすいた?" I misunderstood her and I answered "はい、おんながすき"
    That sounded funny.
    K1

  15. #15
    Anjin Brooker's Avatar
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    Here's another....

    I was at a bar in Japan talking to a Brazilian guy who didn't speak English. I don't speak Portugese, but both of us could speak a little Japanese and and little Spanish. I wanted to say "Where is...." ("donde esta" in Spanish, "doko desu ka" in Japanese) and mixed the two languages together and said, "Doko esta". After hearing that, he nearly fell out of his chair laughing. It was quite a multicultural evening.

  16. #16
    Dog Youkai playaa's Avatar
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    Haha, all these are great! I am sure I will have plenty when I come back from Japan.
    "Kanpeki to chau, jinsei no shuushi
    Puramai zero da nanteba honto ka na?
    Shinu made ni tsukaikiru, un no kazu
    Semete, jibun de dashiire wo sasete
    "

  17. #17
    17sai no jousei soe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brooker
    Here's another....

    I was at a bar in Japan talking to a Brazilian guy who didn't speak English. I don't speak Portugese, but both of us could speak a little Japanese and and little Spanish. I wanted to say "Where is...." ("donde esta" in Spanish, "doko desu ka" in Japanese) and mixed the two languages together and said, "Doko esta". After hearing that, he nearly fell out of his chair laughing. It was quite a multicultural evening.
    yeah, nanka okashii yo. i used to mixed japanese to my motherlanguage too, and my friend cursing at me when i did that. It became a habit though, why dont they understand

  18. #18
    free spirit lineartube's Avatar
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    The funniest/awckward that happened to me regarding a "mistake", which really wasn't, was while I was having dinner with a female Japanase friend and at one point I made a toast, in Portuguese and said "Tchin-Tchin", which made her blush first and laugh secondly... which made me curious about what had just happened, which she replied that tchin (or tchin-tchin, I don't know. Been sometime.) was Japanese slang for a certain protruding male part.
    She did beat me though on "the most embarassing cultural faux pas", when she tried to say in Portuguese, a female citizen of Hong Kong and surprisingly ended up saying a Portuguese slang word for a certain un-protruding female part.

    Too much green wine, that day.

    One thing I can say about this is that this type of cultural clashes can break the ice... if people are tolerant and patient and willing to recognize an innocent mistake for what it was.
    Ln.

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