Our flesh is fresh!


今日は 精肉の日 宮崎県 若どりもも

100g当たり 105円 税込

Use the rikaichan popup dictionary or your favorite reference tool with my transcription below the photo if you need help reading this supermarket sign I saw taped to the meat case advertising chicken thigh meat. Try reading it on your own before reading further.

Then try saying the title of this post ten times fast.

I asked the manager if he’d make me a copy of this sign and he kindly obliged,  excusing himself for a few minutes while he went in back to the copy machine.

I’m always looking at kanji, and this sign has some interesting characters.  But the English is what made me want one to take it home, and rules conscious person that I am,  I couldn’t bring myself to simply pilfer it as some would. It was tempting. The original was red for added emphasis, after all.

I felt a bit self conscious asking, and of course didn’t tell him why I really wanted it. ‘I’m studying kanji’ I said, which wasn’t really a lie.

Japanese people have a notoriously hard time differentiating ‘r’ from ‘l’ when they speak and hear English, and that confusion also pops up in writing now and then. Despite a certain self consciousness about it, it doesn’t usually get in the way of communication, things being made clear by the context.  So rice will be served on the side, not lice.

Here though,  it actually resulted in a happy accident, a case where the actual message is probably even more accurate than the intended one! I’ve seen this kind of advertising sprinkled with English before and the word ‘fresh’ is often used,  but this time someone seems to have been in a hurry and spelled it as their ears told them to.

I saw this on the market’s weekly  精肉の日、’meat(flesh?) day’  and scooped some trays of chicken up.  As the kanji notes, it’s from Miyazaki Ken, which is in Kyushu.  The free rikaichan popup dictionary can also read many place names such as this by just browsing your mouse over them, in addition to other text. It’s worth checking out, and you don’t need to study Japanese to enjoy it with the short bursts of language I transcribe below photos!

I’m a big chicken eater(chicken, by the way, is called かしわ, or ‘kashiwa’ in the Kyoto dialect). I have it almost everyday, a habit I got into over ten years ago after I moved to Kyoto. Breast meat is the cheapest, quite a bargain,  while もも肉(thigh meat) like this is just a bit more expensive.  Why is chicken so cheap here?  I wonder if other westerners here have gotten into the same routine.

How much for a gram of flesh?

JapanesePod101.com – Learn Japanese with Free Daily Podcasts

Originally posted 2012-10-06 01:31:12.

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