Kana Kanban

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ステーキ ハウス ピーピングトム 営業時間11:00−23:30

If you’re studying katakana, try reading this  sign.

Use the rikaichan popup dictionary or your favorite reference tool with my transcription below the photo if you need help.

JapanesePod101.com – Learn Japanese with Free Daily Podcasts

Originally posted 2013-01-26 12:05:32.

Our flesh is fresh!

Flesh!

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.

みみ はな のど If you’re studying hiragana, try reading this

みみ はな のど
If you’re studying hiragana, try reading this small medical clinic’s sign that I came across recently in Kyoto.  It follows the rule that characters that are read vertically are read from right to left.

The parts of the body that this medical specialty is concerned with are referred to in the same order in Japanese as in English, which might well help you guess their meaning even if you don’t study Japanese!

Use the rikaichan popup dictionary or your favorite reference tool on the text I’ve transcribed just below the photo if you need help. Rikaichan will give you the English definitions and the kanji.

Originally posted 2012-09-18 06:34:07.

車庫 Before going to the second paragraph, try

車庫

Before going to the second paragraph, try reading the characters on these old doors, and use the rikaichan popup dictionary or your favorite reference tool on the kanji I’ve transcribed just below the photo if you need help.

These are both常用漢字 (general use kanji) and they make an interesting pair visually,  with the one on the left becoming an element in the other, where it’s partially enclosed by a component that’s referred to as a まだれ,  or sometimes as a ‘dotted cliff’ in English.

The first character is one of the first that beginning kanji students often learn,  but this reading is different from the one used when it stands alone.

Originally posted 2012-09-16 01:44:07.

Kana Kanban

寿司

If you’re learning hiragana, give this Kyoto restaurant sign a look.  It caught my eye because of the elegant, stylized script that might make this otherwise easy to read word a bit of a challenge, if not for the context of the photo.

You might also already be used to sight reading the word in its often seen kanji incarnation that I’ve written just below the photo.

These particular kanji are most often associated with this word and are seen in other forms much less frequently,  so learning them as a set is common.

Originally posted 2012-08-25 22:40:25.

Katakana Japanese Reading Practice #31: Craft Store’s Sign

アート&クラフト

If you’re learning katakana, try reading this shop sign that I saw in Kyoto and you’ll discover what kind of store it is. Kyoto is written in Kanji at the bottom along with the name of this branch, taken from the name of the street that it’s on.

Use the rikaichan popup dictionary or your favorite reference tool on the text I’ve transcribed just below the photo if you need help.

Originally posted 2012-08-21 04:13:18.

Kana Kanban

DSC07456

おにぎり 100YEN セール

If you’re studying hiragana and katakana, try reading this convenience store poster. Use the rikaichan popup dictionary or your favorite reference tool with my transcription below the photo if you need help.

Originally posted 2013-05-01 00:41:48.

Kana Kanban

DSC05896しょうゆバターポップコーン

If you’re studying hiragana and katakana, try reading this.  I took this shot last month at Tokyo Disneyland. Use the rikaichan popup dictionary or your favorite reference tool with my transcription below the photo if you need help.

Originally posted 2013-04-27 02:35:14.

Katakana Japanese Reading Practice #23: Taxi Stand Sign

Japan taxi stand sign in katakana and hiragana Japanese alphabet

タクシー のりば

If you’re studying hiragana and katakana, try reading this sign that I saw on a trip to Tokyo last week. Use the rikaichan popup dictionary or your favorite reference tool with my transcription below the photo if you need help.

JapanesePod101.com – Learn Japanese with Free Daily Podcasts

Originally posted 2013-03-12 22:03:43.