April 29th Daily Reading ブラックジャックによろしく Manga

お待たせいたしました。(Just a little example of keigo as a joke :stuck_out_tongue:) It’s rather long. I’ll take your classification and complete it + add some corrections.

I’m not sure if I can give you a ‘morphological’ classification, but in my opinion, and based on the Japanese textbook I have, there are three levels of politeness in spoken Japanese:

①とても丁寧な言い方: very polite speech, which uses 敬語 (honorifics). There are two kinds of 敬語:
ⓐ尊敬語: ‘respectful’ speech (elevates the status of the listener; I don’t know how this is translated in textbooks)
ⓑ謙譲語: humble speech (lowers the status of the speaker)

Side note: it also seems that some 敬語 can lower the status of the listener if used to indicate their actions. (I found that out while reading the definition of まい.) In that case, it’s 尊大語, which elevates the speaker above the listener. I imagine such usage is rare now, since probably only people of very high status would be able to say such things. (I don’t know if it would be acceptable even for the Emperor to use this.)

②丁寧な言い方: polite speech, which can be combined with 敬語 where necessary. Typically characterised by the です・ます forms.

③くだけた言い方 ≈ タメ口 (The categories that follow are just descriptions. They’re by no means technical terms.)
ⓐ Casual speech
ⓑ Vulgar speech/slang

タメ口 is strictly speaking a term used by young people to designate speech without honorifics and polite forms, which literally means ‘equal mouth’. I guess you could call it ‘plain speech’? The term itself isn’t a technical term though, since it’s rather informal.

辞書 (形 means ‘form’; 系 is often used to mean ‘system’ or ‘series of interconnected things’, which isn’t quite what we’re discussing here) forms the basis of the くだけた言い方, but as my friend studying in Japan often told me, this so-called ‘dictionary form’ isn’t necessarily casual, since it can be used in formal writing, like scientific journal articles, and as YanagiPablo pointed out, even the verbs used in 敬語 can be used in their 辞書形 when necessary.

In terms of morphology… you could say that each speech level has its own morphology, but it’s not like they’re unrelated. Dictionary form is just the ‘plain’ form of the verb without です・ます, while polite speech usually uses the ‘masu stem’, which is called the 連用れんよう形 in Japanese. 連用 because 連=connect and 用=用語, which are the words that have declinations/multiple forms in Japanese, like verbs. 敬語 usually either uses a different verb, or takes the 連用形, adds お, and then になります behind it (to describe the listener’s actions, that is). Those are just some general ideas. 敬語 morphology is of course a little more complex, and there are things I don’t know.

What YanagiPablo just said as an explanation is accurate, but I think ‘relationship’ (or rather, ‘closeness’) and ‘respect’ aren’t necessarily two distinct concepts. It’s true that in some anime (and I think also in period dramas, though I’ve only seen one), children in noble families often address their parents using honorifics (e.g. お母様 or 母上ははうえ instead of the usual お母さん), but generally speaking, closeness tends to preclude the need for politeness. For example, while we might use it as a joking reference to Japanese grammar practice between Japanese learners, it would be quite shocking if one of us suddenly transitioned into polite or honorific speech when speaking to a close Japanese friend. I’d say it’s more like a tree:

1.Close (砕けた言い方)
a. Ordinary politeness (丁寧語)
b. Increased politeness (丁寧語+敬語)

Each time you go up a level, you add additional components.
[Edit: merged posts]


Just a general remark about 先生: while I definitely don’t know all the uses, I’ve come to understand it simply as a term of respect for somebody, often somebody who has a certain sort of knowledge or competence. My monolingual Japanese dictionary seems to agree. (I skimmed the definitions since I can understand the kanji even if I don’t know all their Japanese readings.) It’s used for doctors and teachers, but also for writers and artists. Light novel authors and illustrators are called 先生 as well.


(I’m kinda the opposite: I really like Maggie Sensei’s content and I use it quite often, and I’m OK with the dog pics, even if I don’t look at them much.)

I think a more helpful way to look at のです is as a form for emphasis. The emphasis can be for various reasons, including a request for explanation. The の, in my opinion, is similar to こと. However, it’s not necessarily just the verb that is nominalised: it could be the whole clause before の. E.g. 信じられません。彼女が王族なのですから: (I) can’t trust/believe (her). It’s because she’s a royal. The extra なの draws attention to her royal blood. That is, the issue at hand is the fact that she’s royal. Perhaps the speaker has a particularly bad experience with royals.

In this case, perhaps the difference is not so much one of meaning as one of tone. There’s an insistence on the fact that something is different, and a stronger desire for an explanation. There’s also an expectation that something is amiss on the part of the speaker.


See, to me, emphasis and wanting to give a reason or asking for a reason are mutually exclusive.

A dictionary of Basic Japanese Grammar explains it like so:
A sentence ending which indicates that the speaker is explaining or asking for an explanation about some information shared with the hearer, or is talking about something emotively as it it were of common interest to the speaker and the hearer.

To me, it’s much more precise in scope than emphasis. The reason I’m saying this is not to contradict you but rather to explain why my mind has a hard time to come to terms with: のです => used for emphasis.

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D part 2

(by the way, I’m still processing the information about the levels of politeness. This is why I don’t address it just now. There’s a lot to unpack and I want to make sure I understand it correctly).


The topic of the sentence is ‘‘today’’, the rest of the sentence will provide information about “today”.

やけ is listed as meaning ‘‘desperation’’ or ‘‘despair’’ followed by the particle 『に』. I’m often confused when determining the function of に as there quite a few to pick from. This is from jisho:

…and the adverbial function is missing, I don’t know why.

気合(きあい) means ‘‘motivation’’.

(はい)って is the verb which can mean many things including:

  1. To enter
  2. To break into
  3. To join

I imagine this is a colloquial のじゃない.

I won’t claim anymore until I’ve covered and understood the questions I’ve asked.

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I wouldn’t worry about picking the right definition of the particle (because there are so many!) when there’s already an entry for the whole word: やけに
Just makes it unnecessarily complicated to plug things together yourself when it’s already done for you.


Click the arrows for further explanation:



Platelets: 60 units

けっしょうばん けつ→けっ because of the S sound. The kanji literally mean ‘blood-small-board’
単=single; 位=place/spot/position


Plasmanate Cutter: 6 sticks. Venilon: 5g

Plasmanate Cutter may not have an equivalent in English. I’m not sure. According to Google, Plasmanate is a ‘blood plasma expander’, whatever that is. A document I found regarding… ‘39 cases of Hepatitis B blood plasma and blood products being used simultaneously in the context of blood product doses for blood transfusion’ (or something like that… I’m not really able to understand the title) says Plasmanate Cutter is 加熱人血漿たん白 ('warmed/heated blood plasma albumin/protein). 六本 because the doses probably come in slender tubes.

Venilon is an sulphated immunoglobulin solution according to a database I found. So… antibodies, basically.



You did all of this to the elder/old Mr Kaneko, right? Dr Saitou

か is a question particle. ね indicates that agreement is being sought.
全=all; 部=part. Therefore a ‘whole’/‘all of’
老=old; 人=person
やる is often a less formal form of する. It can also be similar to あげる in the sense that it carries the idea of ‘doing something for someone’.

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No worries, I understand. You’re right. ‘Emphasis’ was perhaps not quite the right word here, especially since we tend to associate the verb ‘to emphasise’ with affirmative statements.

The dictionary has explained it much more eloquently and precisely than I have. Perhaps what I wished to say, in order to summarise the use of のです into an easy-to-grasp concept, was that のです exists to draw attention to something, be it for the purpose of explanation or that of (emotive) emphasis.


So you’re saying I should focus first on に as part of contextual expressions first and if I can’t find anything then rely on its more general functions.

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You’re saying “often” which means it’s not always the case. I’ll look into it thanks for pointing it to my attention.

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The kanji for やけ are 自棄, which (based on my understanding as a Chinese speaker) literally mean ‘self’ and ‘abandon’, which is to say ‘to give up on oneself’. As @Myria said, it’s already has its own entry in the dictionary, so you might as well take that definition. The closest simple Japanese definition given by my dictionary is ひどく, as in ‘terribly’ or ‘awfully’, which I think pretty much explains what it means. However, perhaps you, like me, enjoy breaking things down into their components in order to understand them better. I’ll join you in that now.

If you look into the etymology provided by various dictionaries, it’s said that やけに came from 自棄, meaning that the two must have related meanings. I presume you went through the list of possible meanings for に and found that none of them fit… except perhaps the one that you mentioned right at the end, the adverbial function. I guess you could say it probably just means ‘desperately’. In context though, it seems to mean ‘really’, which doesn’t match. How can we explain this? Well, the dictionary also says やけに is a 俗語的表現ぞくごてきひょうげん (a colloquial/vernacular expression), so just like ‘terribly’ in ‘terribly excited’, やけに can indicate an extreme degree of something without it necessarily being truly ‘desperate’, even if the expression does put a bit of a negative spin on it.

Yup, やる can also mean things like ‘to send’ or ‘to give’. In the context of informal Japanese though, it usually just means ‘to do’, and sometimes also ‘to do for somebody’.





  • おかげで: an expression that means “thanks to/because of” (the で is the particle of “means of action”).
  • 良好 : good, satisfactory, favourable, excellent. I immediately guessed the meaning, as I know 良い and 好き; but struggled for the reading (りょうこう).

What “おかげで” refers to is not specified; is it thanks to “you” (actions of Pr. Shiratori),
or thanks to the different products provided to the patient ?
I opted for the second.

はい‼ おかげで患者は今日も良好です!
Yes!! Thanks to (that) the patient is still fine today



I’ll take I., as I like transcribing text on the landscape (笑)


(Family of patient):

ありがとうございます 先生!


(On the patient’s door):

517 / 金子敏夫 / 笠原 誠 / 吉村直之 / 高原一彰 /

  • 偉い (えらい) : noble/great
  • いただく : (humble verb) 1. to eat, 2. to drink, 3. (helper verb) to make someone do something
  • じいちゃん : old man, grandfather
  • きっと : certainly
  • 満足【マン・ゾク】: satisfactory, adequate
  • しとる : contracted version of しておる; ~ておる is humble version of ~ている

It seems to be 4 patients per room…

  • かさはら 笠原 まこと 誠
  • よしむら 吉村 なおゆき 直之 (I would have guessed “Naono”)
  • たかはら 高原 かずあき 一彰 (I would have never guessed “Kazuaki”!)

The family speaking:

ありがとうございます 先生!
Thank you doctor!

And humble speech used all along, ~ていただく, ~ておる;
but じいちゃん, grandpa.

I don’t understand the last と in ending とです however…

Grandpa being operated by such a great doctor, he will surely be satisfied

Wasabi-jpn gives “I’m sure he is happy to have been operated on by such an esteemed doctor!”;
so I was quite correct :dart:

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And titles! :slight_smile:

I’m a little out of my depth here, so I might have to check with a friend, but I think you’re right. Prof Shiratori is probably his superior (Saitou uses です while Shiratori uses 砕けた言い方), which means, in my opinion, that Saitou would have said おかげさまで if he had been thanking Shiratori for his actions/concern.

UPDATE: spoke to my friend. He’s not sure either, but he thinks it’s likely that you’re right: おかげで means ‘thanks to the medication’ in this case. The source I found discussing this manga (see below) also says the same thing.

By the way, there’s a slight typo here^: it’s 偉い(えらい)=noble/great, not 違い(ちがい)=difference.

EDIT: I just found something, so I thought I’d add on: しとるとです is apparently a rural dialect form, and is equivalent to しています. Source (SPOILER WARNING: This page contains a lesson that translates and explains this very manga in English): https://www.wasabi-jpn.com/japanese-lessons/japanese-lessons-japanese-reading-practice-with-manga-1-3-1/


Oops, I was too happy to thnk I knew it …
(and now, that changes my perception of the whole sentence;
previously I thought some doctor said that, as “… some other doctor …”; but with 偉い it may be still the family speaking.

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  • よけい : too much, excessive
  • 治療 (ちりょう) : medical treatment, cure
  • 指示 (しじ) : instruction(s)

Don’t do too much

*I’ll show you the instructions for the treatment

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@YanagiPablo @Zizka I’ve updated this post to include what my friend told me and a link to a lesson on wasabi-jpn.com that translates and discusses this manga (I found it by accident).

On a side note, I wanted to suggest an anime for you guys if you’re interested in medical vocabulary (and by anime, of course): you can watch Cells at Work! (Hataraku Saibou) (all 14 episodes available on Crunchyroll), which was so biologically accurate that teachers actually showed it to their classes during lesson time! You probably won’t hear as many names of medications (which frankly is OK, in my opinion, since we’ll probably never need those names, even if we start living in Japan one day), but you’ll heard the names of common bacteria and illnesses, and get to learn about the immune system in Japanese. The French title is Les Brigades Immunitaires, and it’s on Wakanim too, if you’re looking for it in France. (Everything is free on Wakanim except episode 14, which I think was an OVA.) Anyway, it’s just a suggestion, but I figured you might find it interesting. :smiley:



The family has bowed to the doctors. The most senior doctor speaks:




術後 (じゅつご) post-operation/after surgery.
経過(けいか) course/treatment
順調(じゅんちょう) doing well;

手術(しゅじゅつ) surgery
100% (びゃくパーセント)
成功(せいこう) successful
心臓(しんぞう) heart
合併症(がっぺいしょう) complications

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Yes, when I type on my phone, especially at low battery, it tends to propose/ autocorrect things completely out of left field, but I’m not always paying attention :sob:


Re. J


This sentence structure is so straightforward that even a Japanese noob like me can (maybe) get this correct–and I can check on the [page](https://www.wasabi-jpn.com/japanese-lessons/japanese-lessons-japanese-reading-practice-with-manga-1-3-1/
) found!! Still, this is one of those situations where Google translate doesn’t make sense. It says “Post-operative course is good”. I think what is doing well here is the patient, not the treatment course. Besides, he’s giving the family the update.

In the second sentence, after the surgery was 100% successful, there is a conjunction が that means “but”, and in medical situations, those can be BIG “howevers”. Because the のでat the end really emphasizes the “heart complications” phrase, I split “hear complications” into “complications with the heart” to underscore the gravity.

The senior Doctor says: (The patient’s) Post-surgery recovery is progressing smoothly.
The surgery was 100% successful, BUT there are complications with the heart.