JBC's 赤い悪夢 (5分後に意外な結末) [red nightmare (an unexpected conclusion in 5 minutes)]

面識がある means you both know each other’s face/ have quickly met before, but never really talked.

顔見知り means literally that you have seen their face before. It means the same as 面識がある, but it’s less formal.

知り合い means acquaintance in a more generic way. You know each other, but you are not close.

知人 is like 知り合い, but more formal.


Just to add to this: I asked a Japanese co-worker, and apparently 知り合い can mean either the relationship of being acquainted with someone (e.g. “I’ve made his acquaintance”), or the person themselves (e.g. “He’s an acquaintance of mine”). Meanwhile, 面識 is just the relationship and doesn’t refer to a person - so you can say 彼は私の知り合いです but you can’t say 彼は私の面識です.

面識 is generally used in the expression 面識がある to mean that you’ve met someone/made their acquaintance; but you can’t say 知り合いがある. Also, 面識 is a more formal word.


I enjoyed the first story more than I expected to. When the niece started talking about Framton’s fear of dogs I was totally lost and didn’t make the connection until the last sentence.
I was kinda worried coming into this that it’d be super hard and I wouldn’t be able to keep up, but it wasn’t nearly as bad as I expected. I will admit I kept re-reading Framton’s name to make sure I wasn’t misreading it though, it just sounds super weird to me. Like, who names their kid Framton?


Great find! I feel it may be more than just lost in translation, though - more lost in translation, localisation, modernisation and then adaption to a younger audience. Interesting to see which bits have been most dramatically changed - I guess the publishers thought the structure might be confusing to children if the story opened with the conversation.

By the way, the monkey’s paw story helped me finally understand a part of an old Rick&Morty episode. (Not that it was necessary to understand the episode, but it’s nice to finally get the reference)

1 Like

Since it should pretty much be Sunday at most places, I’m going to post the discussion questions for the week. As I mentioned before these are questions regarding 開いた窓, so those who want to talk about 猿の手 are free to put together questions they wish to talk about.

  1. In this story Framton moves away from the big city to escape its tiresome nature. What kind of condition you think he has that would be alleviated by talking to others?

  2. If you were in Framton’s place, do you think you would find the story Vera told to be believable?

  3. Do you think it was rude of Ms. Sappleton to act completely disinterested with the conversation Framton tried to have or do you think Framton was the rude one for bringing up his health issues to a perfect stranger?

  4. We find out in the end that Vera is a pathological liar or at least makes up stories for her own enjoyment wouldn’t you think by now her family would know what kind of person she is?

  5. What did you think about the story in general? Why?

I’ll be back to answer these in a bit.

  1. I think Framton has similar problems to this man
    You can be truly alone only in a big city.

  2. Well, I fell for it the first time I read :smile:. But I think I would have at least looked at the people who were coming.

  3. It’s not rudeness, it’s just human nature. Most of the people hear only themselves.

  4. That’s a good question, but maybe she is just too good at it. I mean, imagine them asking Framton why he had run away and do you think he would tell them that he was deceived by a little girl?

  5. I liked it because of funny ending :rofl:

  1. I would have believed the story when she told it, but not been afraid of the people coming. Either thinking I got something wrong or realize she told a big tale. I’ve actually experienced similar with a mentally ill person, so I’m used to it =P (he couldn’t separate fantasy and reality)

  2. I would think the family should know by now. She must have done it enough times where she got caught in a lie for them to know, but it can be hard to know when is it truth and when is it a lie?

Um. 2, 3? But it was suposed to be 2, 4… Checkes… IT IS?!! Wanikani edits my number D=


That’s because discourse believes it’s an enumeration, so it “fixes” it for you. With 1,3,5:

  1. Test.
  2. More test.
  3. Indeed.

If I try with \ in front of the . though:
1. Test
3. More test.
5. Indeed.

Back to the topic at hand:

  1. Pretty much what @NickNickovich said. He was probably really stressed, and getting more misanthropic as time went on, pretty much stopping interaction with people.
  2. Well, yes. I would definitely be able to relate to someone having a kind of mental condition, suffering from one myself. And the story Vera tells does make sense.
  3. Based on her version of the story when she talks with her husband, Framton was probably desperately trying to change the subject. Since he had nothing else to talk about (especially since he is socially impaired at the moment), he probably talked about his own condition a lot. I don’t think it is rude to talk about it to a stranger, but I guess it was beyond reasonable. In turn, Ms. Sappleton was probably desperately trying to change back the subject. Must have been fun to watch for Vera.
  4. They probably do. But the problem is that she doesn’t always lie. She did not lie about her aunt coming down soon, for instance, or things like that. So they probably never know for sure whether she is telling the truth or not.
  5. The story did get me. The ending was definitely not what I had expected. (I thought part of what was happening, or more specifically Vera, was a delusion in Framton’s mind).
  1. Although I wasn’t 100% about what the condition was, I agree with the other assessments of some type of neurosis that could be helped with developing a support system of which Framton lacked.

  2. If I were in his shoes, I would have believed the story up until when the hunters returned. I would be more confused and doubting whether I was listening properly.

  3. Considering the situation at hand, Framton thought he was alleviating the awkwardness by trying to change subject, but I do think Ms. Sappleton’s reaction was pretty harsh. If you don’t want to talk about something, just change the subject again rather than looking like you’re about to die of boredom.

  4. Obviously Vera has a refined skill that she’s been able to use from time to time. However I find that such people will eventually get their day of reckoning.

  5. I thought it was kind of funny after reaching the end of the story. What started off as a bit dreary turned into something a little comical. Due to the polite Japanese, it was a little bit difficult to understand on the first reading.

1 Like
  1. I have not idea. I thought it was a kind of made up condition that would be cured by talking to people in that world.
  2. Forgive me, for I am so gullible. And I watch way too many scary movies. I think I would have believed her story, and upon seeing her horrified face of the hunters return, I would have thought they were ghosts or something and either ran or passed out.
  3. Yeah I think Framton was just nervous and had nothing to talk about. I mean the only thing he had in common with these people was his sister, and I think it makes since to tell why she sent him. However sappleton was rude.
  4. I think they’ed have to know by now. I’m not sure you could hide something like that from your family all your life.
  5. I thought it was pretty cute and funny.
1 Like
  1. Not at all sure. I think this was something that led to some confusion on my first read through since I kept feeling I’d missed some explanation regarding his condition. I get that it’s kind of funny that this happens to him when he’s trying hard to interact with others - and maybe helps explain his extreme reaction - but it felt slightly redundant.

  2. Definitely. Like Frampton, I think I’d also have felt highly uncomfortable talking to the aunt when she did appear and been at a loss for what to say / how to handle the situation. However, when I saw the others returning, I would have stopped believing and asked either the aunt or Vera about what was happening.

  3. Yes, she seemed pretty rude. I don’t think I’d call Frampton rude. He could have thought of something better, and no one particularly likes hearing about medical complaints, but I still don’t think it’s ever rude. Plus, in this case, his condition is relevant to why he’s visiting so perfectly acceptable.

  4. I think they may know by now, but still get taken in if she’s good enough. For example, since Frampton did actually run away in terror, her fairly innocuous story would come across as eminently believable. When I was a little kid there were some other kids who lied a lot - we’d often doubt them when they said outlandish things, but we never ended up questioning everything they said.

  5. I liked it. I was confused the first time I read but more because I felt I was missing something about the sister’s relationship with the people and Frampton’s condition, which turned out not to be there. I like the way Vera is revealed to be kind of the ‘villain’ of the piece right at the end and how you have to reevaluate everything you read based purely on that last line.

1 Like
  1. I think that this has been talked about enough, but it seems like when I was reading it, I thought nerve was more like a pain feeling, not a physiological one. But I am not sure if it is described that way in Japanese because many mental illnesses aren’t recognized as “real” illnesses in Japan.
  2. If I were him I probably would have been spooked, XD
  3. I don’t think it was rude, more like she was introducing her family and what they do, to him.
  4. I feel like she was too good. They may not know that she is a pathological liar.
  5. I found it to be really interesting! I was afraid that it was going to be too difficult to read, but after marking who was speaking in each passage, it was much easier to comprehend. Though, it did take me about a week to finish it. :sweat_smile:
1 Like

Did people also read the Monkey Paw story? I don’t know if this is a translation of the original or a modern adaption, but isn’t that quite a famous story? There’s definitely an episode of the Simpsons featuring it:

I did read it, and it says at the end it’s an adaptation of the original story (翻案). Like for the first story, the translator probably took some liberties when writing it.

I guess it is famous, since I have seen more than a few reference to it in pop culture. I just didn’t realize it until now. There was also a Rick & Morty episode featuring the Monkey’s paw (“Something Ricked this way comes”).
So, when I actually read the story, I went pretty much “oooh, so that’s where it’s from”.
(Also, there was a Buffy the vampire slayer episode with a similar plot, but let’s forget about that)

It seems like this is the Wikipedia article for the original story, with a whole other page listing a bunch of places it’s been adapted :open_mouth:

I wonder how many of the stories will be translations of English-language works?

I’ve been reading ahead, and, so far, all of them.
(Well, technically, they are written down as 欧米の小咄 so “Western” short stories)

Edit: just checked the remaining ones. They are all translated from English, I think.

And here we are reading them all in Japanese :laughing: There are several things I was hoping to get out of this book club, but I didn’t think that an expanded knowledge of English literature would be one of them.

1 Like

Yeah, while this isn’t any sort of major issue, I would also prefer to read something actually from Japan. Which reminds me actually that I have something to suggest…[runs to book club home thread]

1 Like

I’m late, since i could only borrow a notebook today (PC broke Friday), but here goes:

  1. Dude was super stressed out, imagine been so stressed you actually have to talk to other to help cure your disease! I believe @NickNickovich posted a image of an anime character from Welcome to N.H.K right? Well that resumes quite well Framton condition.

  2. Yeah. I’m mean, people with mental problems are not that rare, i know a few. It’s a believable situation.

  3. The way it was described in the book, we can’t be sure of how MUCH Framton actually tried to change de topic of the conversation, so, when i read, i thought Ms. Sappleton was the rude one, but them i remembered she had some mental illnes, so i kinda let it go after all.

  4. She must be really good to tell lies like that and not be caught, ever.

It’s was a fun to read.
I was reading at night, and before arriving in the last page, i became quite scaried. (lights were off.)
The first was not that hard to read after all. People were saiying this is the hardest one, so i’m quite relieved.

Ps. A question, how the hell did you know how to write their names with romanji??? @LucasDesu

1 Like