にゃんにゃん Reading Group - Finished!


#1328

Wow! Great questions @Atani and thank you so much for the answers @trout. I’ve just worked through them all (thank you so much again!) and learnt a lot. On page 47

I had うまく down in my notes as skillfully, thinking that the wife had played her trick with great skill. But of course that’s the joke in the name in the first place!

Thank you both again so much!


#1329

Looks like you’ve already got well over 200 readers for your next book (なぜ?どうして?)–that’s AMAZING! Good luck!


#1330

Thank you!


#1331

This is listed as “uh” in Jisho and considering it’s surrounded by commas that seems the most likely meaning to me.
I think “well” sounds a bit better in English:
“I set my heart on it and, well, went.”

It’s indeed the explanatory の as @trout mentioned.
One way to think about it is to translate の as “that” (の is here ん; it’s a common alternative pronunciation for the explanatory の, especially before です)
Before the explanatory の, the copula だ changes into な (it’s a bit like how “a” in English becomes “an” before a vowel).
しりたかった だけ だ “I only want to know the truth”
->
しりたかった だけ なんです “It’s that I only want to know the truth”

It’s not particularly relevant here but I explained ら in general here:

I suspect this sentence is intentionally a bit unnatural.
In English you could do something like this:
“Yesterday I thought about turning myself in (to the police) and I was quite nervous, but when my wife used her quick wits and pretended to be sick…, well, thank you for letting us deceive you.”
I think he doesn’t want to explicitly state the consequences of her fakery, so he skips straight to the “thank you” part.

I think “skillfully” is more likely to be correct. I don’t see 妻 used as a name ender anywhere and I think a family name would be written in kanji.
But I also find the position of the adverb to be a bit odd, so I don’t really know.

The first の here is not “of” but more like a copula ("(which) is"), like in むすめのリリ (“Lily, who is my daughter”).
Here “with” or “which has” works well in English: “the cat with a sulky face” / “the cat which has a sulky face”

It’s short for ~なければ いけない
literally “If I don’t …, that would not go”
here “would not go” is similar to English “won’t do” (i.e. “would be bad”) (cf German “das geht nicht” :))
of course translating it as “have to” / “must” is more natural

Maybe it more literally means conclusion.
“Nevertheless, the conclusion is I have to take care of this sulky faced cat?”


#1332

Thank you very much @trout and @aiju - that helped a lot!

And thanks @marcusp for creating this reading group - I learned so much and I’m happy to have finished reading my first story in Japanese. With the help of all members it was much fun, but much above my current level. So I’m going to put that book back on the shelf for later and instead read the なぜ?どうして? one next with the group. :wink:

I also want to say that I found it very interesting to see how “too much” hiragana really makes reading harder. Sometimes it was difficult for me to see where one word ended and the next one began. And when I didn’t know a word and there were multi possible Kanji [is that correct English?? :sweat_smile:] I had to guess from context which one it could be. So we can see again how important learning Kanji is :wink:
I just wonder how kids know what is meant? :thinking:


#1333

I think it’s a lot easier if you already speak the language. After all, there are no spaces in conversation.
Japanese in general seems to be an extremely context heavy language, where context can greatly change the meaning of words and even whole sentences, but it is still relatively unambiguous once you know the context.

I think either “kanji” or “kanjis” is acceptable as plural in English but I think people that know Japanese gravitate towards the first one (this is a general rule to applies to most Japanese words used in English).
It’s similar to how many English words from Latin/Greek use the Latin/Greek plural, e.g. formula -> formulae, curriculum -> curricula…
(Of course “formulas” is also acceptable and sometimes the “correct” plural is not acceptable! octopus -> octopuses, not octopoda)


#1334

Oh, thanks, but I meant the phrase “multi possible Kanji” :wink:


#1335

Oh. Yes, that should be “multiple possible kanji”.


#1336

Head --> desk :woman_facepalming:
Of course! Now that I read it :sweat_smile:

Thanks again!


#1337

Just a shout out to @marcusp. Just took the JLPT and there was a specific question asking for the meaning of ぺらぺら (ペラペラ) on the test. I chuckled to myself while thinking, “Hey, that’s a word I learned reading にゃんにゃん.” Remember in the first story when Hanae was talking to the Japan tongue twister champion?

So like I mentioned before, にゃんにゃん helped prepare me for the test. lol


#1338

That is fantastic! Thank you! And good luck with the test, I’m sure you’ve done great! (They ought to make にゃんにゃん a set text! lol!)