セーラー服と機関銃🏫🌺 (IBC) - Week 5

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Week 5 16 March 2024
End page 81
End point (kindle) 1008
End phrase 泉はドサッと長椅子に腰を据えた (end of section 4)
Pages 19
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Google sheet:

セーラー服と機関銃 vocabulary sheet

Please read the guidelines on the first page before adding any words.

Discussion Guidelines

Everybody should feel free to post and ask questions–it’s what makes book clubs fun! But please do not post until you are familiar with Spoiler Courtesy!

Spoiler Courtesy

Please follow these rules to avoid inadvertent ネタバレ. If you’re unsure whether something should have a spoiler tag, err on the side of using one.

  1. Any potential spoiler for the current week’s reading need only be covered by a spoiler tag. Predictions and conjecture made by somebody who has not read ahead still falls into this category.

  2. Any potential spoilers for external sources need to be covered by a spoiler tag and include a label (outside of the spoiler tag) of what might be spoiled. These include but are not limited to: other book club picks, other books, games, movies, anime, etc. I recommend also tagging the severity of the spoiler (for example, I may still look at minor spoilers for something that I don’t intend to read soon).

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This is an example of the “Blur Spoiler” option.

Proper Nouns

Name Hiragana reading Notes Kindle location first mentioned
赤川次郎 あかがわじろう the author cover
尾田医師 おだいし Doctor Oda 24
目高組 めだかぐみ Medaka clan 86
星泉 ほしいずみ main character, Izumi 170
酒井好子 さかいよしこ aunt Yoshiko 172
星貴志 ほしたかし main character’s father, Takashi 179
酒井呈一 さかいていいち Uncle (Yoshiko’s husband) 201
知子 ともこ Tomoko (?Izumi’s mother) 211
奥沢哲夫 おくざわてつお Classmate of Izumi, Tetsuo (son of an executive, smart dresser, family expect him home for dinner on time) 251
渡辺周平 わたなべしゅうへい Classmate of Izumi, Shuhei (stocky, bowlegged, loves Judo) 251
竹内智生 たけうちともお Classmate of Izumi, Tomo. (Smart, heading for Tokyo university, wears glasses) 261
マユミ - mysterious woman in Izumi’s apartment 348
三浦久子 みうらひさこ Miss Miura, teacher 357
保科校長 ほしなこうちょう Headteacher Hoshina 368
和子 かずこ classmate, 433
健次 けんじ Kenji, Medaka gang member, short, unbalanced (brought the doctor in the car in the prologue), chews gum 555
英樹 ひでき Hideki, Medaka gang member, skinny and unhealthy looking, wears thick glasses 556
たけし Takeshi, Medaka gang member, stocky and overweight 558
佐久間 さくま Sakuma, Medaka second in command, unusually tall (‘beanpole’), in 50s 558
黒木 くろき detective, head of the S section 870
浜口物産 はまぐちぶっさん Hamaguchi trading company 936


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A few bits highlighted from this week’s reading

1.The telephone is ringing and Izumi (not feeling well) says


The overall sense is clear from the context, but any help with parsing/unpacking this?

2. Izumi is worrying about the correct Yakuza protocols

She doesn’t think that


is in fashion any more
Anyone have any context or explanation for this greeting (my dictionary describes it as “formal initial greeting between yakuza, street vendors, gamblers, etc.

3. デカさん

When I read this, and spotted that it was slang for a detective, I wondered if somehow it was a reference to the character in Bladerunner (“Deckard”), but found this interesting wiki page that suggests it is an old term - much older than the film or the preceding novel (I’m guessing it is a coincidence, unless PK Dick knew Japanese…

4. A curious expression


The first part of this is a curious onomapoteia for a quick bobbing of the head, or the boing: “sound of thin metal or plastic surface caving in and springing back” - it’s a cool mental image!

The second expression - “bewitched by a fox” - I found this long articleShutterstock.com-,「狐につままれる」とは、何が起こっ,と表現できるでしょう%25E3%2580%2582) in a Japanese magazine that talks about it. (I used google translate, but actually this article is pretty accessible, and worth having a go at reading…)

The telephone is ringing and Izumi says

やんなっちゃうなあ === 嫌(いや)になってしまう

Seems to be a casual way of introducing yourself when you’re sick! Found on japanese language stack exchange:

いやになる is a fixed phrase meaning “to be fed up / sick / disgusted”. So やんなっちゃうなあ is something like “Now I’m starting to feel disgusted”, “I can’t help being sick”.

Izumi is worrying about the correct Yakuza protocols

From what I’ve gathered from a google search and the meaning of 控える (to refrain, be moderate, etc.), this is a standardized way of saying “please wait” as in, “please refrain from attacking me, because I’m about to introduce myself”. I take this to be sort of like, yeah I look shady but I’m here to have a polite interaction.

Found this yahoo japan question/answer where the answerer gives an in depth explanation of the expression’s origin which I found interesting. No idea how true it is, though!


From Izumi's conversation with the policemop..er...man


Can anyone help me parse this sentence? When I run it through deepl, the result makes perfect sense, but the sentence has so many parts I’m unsure about that it’s still confusing. I bolded the parts I’m the most unsure about.


一般の方 (かた) is a polite equivalent to 一般の人. なさる is keigo, equivalent to する here. なんて is the “things like ~” particle that here says the rest of the sentence is defining/describing what a 刑事部長 is. 上も上 is one of those annoying unlookupable patterns, but my guess is that here it means something like “the highest of the high”, i.e. this isn’t just a high ranking officer but somebody right up at the top of the hierarchy.


Your guess is right! This pattern is lookupable in my copy of 日本語文型辞典 as NもN: “Repeats the same noun so as to emphasize that the degree talked about is not usual”


Thanks - I actually have that book, but it was on the other side of the room and I didn’t think to check it…


It’s my favorite dictionary to have on hand for reading, since I’m a weirdo with no easy ebook lookup system :smiling_face_with_three_hearts:


I’m glad you asked. I had highlighted that whole weird speech about his rank. I still don’t quite get what he was saying.

I did find this on Wikipedia, which seems helpful (at least with a bit of Deepl assistance).


(Am I right in thinking that he is a regular detective and not the highest of the high version?)


That was my impression, too. Not so much because I actually understood the sentence, but because he didn’t seem like the type to brag. Speaking of which…I wanted to wait until I’d reached the end of the chapter before commenting on the contents, but I already love this guy. The moment he said he didn’t want to compare himself to Columbo, I started comparing him to Columbo :man_detective:t3:. I wonder if he’s also going to solve this case with deductings coming out of left field and if so, what Izumi is going to do about it.


I’m not so sure that he is a real policeman at all. I think that his behavior and his questions are rather suspicious (and those who have read the previous IBC book know that not every policeman is really on the good side).


He’s basically explaining the same thing your Wikipedia quote does – he introduced himself as 部長刑事の黒木 on the previous page, but Izumi just incorrectly called him 刑事部長 (turnabout for him calling her 泉星?), so this line of dialogue is him correcting her and explaining that there’s a big difference between an ordinary 部長刑事 like him and the super top brass 刑事部長 title she used by mistake.

Oh, and on the 月とスッポン metaphor, I think this person’s art on twitter is pretty good.


Yeah, he’s definitely sus. And you’re right that fake policemen seem to be a bit of a recurring theme. I wonder what that thing about a missing package is all about.


I think (having read the back cover blurb) that they suspect Izumi’s dad of having been engaged in smuggling of some description under the cover of these frequent foreign business trips, and possibly that his death was related to that - so they’re trying to find out if he brought back the goods to the apartment or might have had the opportunity to drop them off somewhere else.


Read the second half of the chapter thinking that the plot was getting into full swing now and then our heroine spends all of it in a waiting room :joy:.


You might find that more happens next week :wink:


I sure hope so. Though it would be quite the plot twist if the rest of the book consisted of poor Izumi getting led from waiting room to waiting room, getting ever more hungry.


ooh, Akagawa meets Franz Kafka…

now that would be interesting…