J's alternate mnemonics, Levels 11-20

Whew - things got harder after level 10. Making my own mnemonics for the words I’m stuck on really helps. Hope you find a few helpful, or are inspired to start making your own. Enjoy :slight_smile:

See also: J’s alternate mnemonics, Levels 1-10
See also: J’s alternate mnemonics, Levels 21-30

Level 11

Kanji (Click to see alternate mnemonic…)

良(りょう) Good

A GOOD root will sprout into a new plant.

Or maybe you just planted it by the Rio (りょう)Grande river.

初(しょ)First

After years of effort, you’ve created a SPIRIT SWORD. It’s the FIRST of it’s kind – an amazing work of art and technology! You can’t wait to SHOW (しょ) it to everyone, so you create the FIRST SPIRIT SWORD SHOW (しょ), so you can SHOW (しょ) everyone your FIRST SPIRIT SWORD.

労(ろう)Labor

Viking ships were all VIKING POWERed with hard LABOR. ROWs of VIKINGS would ROW and ROW (ろう). So much tiring manual LABOR! That’s VIKING POWER!

働(どう)Work

The strongest LEADER has the POWER to do HEAVY lifting (mentally or physically), and will always get the most WORK done.

Why? Because they are the best WORKer. Doh! (どう)

拾(ひろ)to Pick up

My real HERO (ひろ) is the person who PICKS UP trash when they see it. They just reach down with their FINGERS and PICK UP the offending item.

You can see their fingers putting the trash in the bin on the right side of the kanji.

放(ほう)Release

In WINTER, the ski lift goes in the best DIRECTION! Up the slope! But, due to high winds, the chair lift is closed today.

You’re so committed to the WINTER DIRECTION (up the slope) that you decide to use the old fashioned rope tow.

Make sure you HOld (ほう) on for dear life as it drags you up the mountain in the wind! And, don’t forget to RELEASE the handle at the top, or it’ll pull your face into the snow!

昔(むかし)Long ago

LONG AGO, blackjack was used as punishment for gambling soldiers. If they were caught gambling, they were forced to play BLACKJACK for hours while hiking barefoot under the hot SUN.

The soldiers called this “MUck ASHI” punishment since their feet were covered in muck afterwards.

位(い)Rank

The LEADER is calling out names, making everyone STAND up. He’s calling them in order of RANK. Imagine all those fancy 1st RANK people standing first, with the low rank bottom feeders still sitting down.

First up are the EAGLE (い) scouts, that’s the top RANK.

Vocab

支度 (したく)Preparation

You want to SUPPORT an important OCCURRENCE, a meeting about global warming by several DEGREES.

Everyone will sitting in a YURT on STOOLS, and you’re in charge of the PREPARATION.

As part of the PREPARATION, you arranged the stools in the yurt, then hang posters on the wall. It’s breezy in the yurt, so you use FOUR (し) TACKS (たく) each, 1 in each corner.

See the posters with 2 or 3 tacks blowing away in the wind. You must use FOUR (し) TACKS (たく) in your PREPARATION.

路地(ろじ)Alley, dirt path

Just for fun, you walk down a DIRT PATH into an ALLEY behind a church. You’re surprised to see a ROW of baby JEsus statues. (ろじ) Cool!

配る(くばる)to Distribute, to pass out

Your family is filthy rich, from their ALCOHOL DISTRIBUTION business, dating back to the prohibition.

You’ve gathered them all together to announce that you’re getting married!

Following your family’s (rather antiquated and sexist) tradition, you DISTRIBUTE Champagne to the ladies, and PASS OUT cigars to the men.

As the deep smell of CUBAn (くば) cigars floods your nostrils, you feel grateful your family’s vast fortune.

集める(あつめる)to Collect, to gather

You’re running around SHOOing the turkeys TO GATHER them together, and it’s a lot of exercise! As you start to sweat from exertion, you pause fo a moment and say “あつ!”

One of the turkeys nearby looks at you in agreement as replies “あつ”. Wow, you didn’t realize turkeys can talk. You’ll have TO COLLECT that one for further testing.

病む(やむ)to be Sick

You ate so much chocolate yam ice cream that you’re about TO BE SICK. Your throat tightens. You begin gasping “や…や…や…” and then barf.

Fortunately, it tastes like ice cream. YAM YAM! (やむ)

首位(しゅい)First place

You’re neck and neck, which means you’re a SHOE IN (しょい) for first place!
You need to be quick, so trim しゅう to しゅ and いん in い.

最低(さいてい)the Worst

The MOST LOW quality drinks are THE WORST. Often, they’re so disgusting, I vomit on SIGHT (さいてい).

注ぐ(そそぐ)to Pour

You’re SO SO GOod (そそぐ) at pouring, which is why those drops are flying out of the bottle into the glasses!

注文(しゅうもん)to Order

At you local sushi bar, you have to WRITE out your order, even your drink orders (which is weird).

拾う(ひろう)To Pickup

My real HERO (ひろう) is the person who PICKS UP trash when they see it. They just reach down with their FINGERS and PICK UP the offending item.

Tou can see their fingers putting the trash in the bin on the right side of the kanji.

That’s a true HERO!

便所(べんじょ)Bathroom

Imagine what a CONVENIENT PLACE your BATHROOM is. You even have a BANJO (べんじょ) so you can play music while you enjoy yourself.

労働(ろうどう)Manual labor

The person who ROLLS DOUGH (ろうどう) does MANUAL LABOR.

受付(うけつけ)Receptionist

The RECEPTIONIST saw me come in with my skateboard and said quickly “You can’t skate (うけつけ) here”.

No problem, I just came in to use your bathroom and drink your coffee :slight_smile:

物語(ものがたり)Tale, legend, story

The THING LANGUAGE (物語) is good for it telling TALES, spreading LEGENDS, making STORIES!

Like Koichi’s THING (もの) about the great gatling (がたり) gun that wandered the land, mowing everything down in its path.

放す(はなす)to Release

You really want to take a bouquet of flowers (はな) to your sweetheart at the top of the ski lift.

But, it’s just too hard to hold everything it out, so you release the flowers.

命(いのち)Life

This looks like a tiny house for mice, and it’s made out of Swiss cheese.

Imagine living your LIFE, IN A CHEese house!

新た(あらた)Fresh, new

If you rearrange た and ら, you get あらた, a FRESH NEW way of saying あたら(しい).

友好(ゆうこう)Friendship

If you’re both acting FRIEND LIKE, then you’ve found true FRIENDSHIP!

YOU CO-everything together now (co-operate, co-own things, co-mingle, …)

指す(さす)to Point

Use your FINGER to POINT across the table and say “Please pass me some salsa SAUCE (さす)”… which is redundant, because “salsa” already means SAUCE (さす).

Level 12

Radicals

者 Someone

What’s that underground? Looks like SOME ONES arranged to look like a SUN.

Why would SOMEONE arrange SOME ONEs like that?

廴 Yoga

This is a clever logo for Z’s YOGA. A Z on top of a Y standing on a spongy YOGA mat. Brilliant!

示 Jackhammer

Another logo for J’s JACKHAMMER business. See the J in the middle of the jackhammer. Clever!

Kanji

息(そく)Breath

Put my hand on MYSELF, over my HEART, and take a deep BREATH. What’s that smell? Dirty SOCKs (そく)

族(ぞく)Tribe

After surrendering all your GUNS and ARROWS, your TRIBE moves in the DIRECTION of the hot springs. You’re ready for a nice SOAK (ぞく) in the tub. Remember, no socks (そく) in the tub. Just SOAK (ぞく).

短(たん)Short

It’s BEAN harvest time! So, you shoot mini ARROWS at each BEAN, until all the stalks are SHORT and you have a SHORT pile of BEANS.

These beans make so much gas, that their perfect for making TANsan!

合(ごう) Suit

Looks like SUIT pants on a hanger.

I only wear a SUIT when I GO (ごう) to a wedding or GO to a funeral.

A SUIT really SUITS that occasion.

登(とう)Climb

Reading…

What hurts the most after climbing? Your TOE! Because your climbing shoes are too right, and really not made for walking down after you climb up. You TOES are killing you after the CLIMB.

Vocab

深夜(しんや)Middle of the Night

Seniors (しんや) often wake up in the MIDDLE OF THE NIGHT.

命(いのち)Life

This looks like little house made a Swiss cheese. Imagine living your LIFE IN A CHEese (いのち)house!

Everything in your house would smell like cheese. Pretty cool, unless your lactose intolerant of course.

注意(ちゅうい)Caution

Reading

CAUTION! There’s CHEWIng (ちゅうい) gum under the desk. Don’t touch it!

育つ(どだつ)to be Raised

So dat’s (そだつ) how you were raised!? Drinking soda (そだ) all day!

戦い(たたかい)Battle

In the heat of BATTLE, you realize you’ve been fatally wounded. You sink to the ground as warm (あたたかい) blood soaks your clothes.

With your last breath you gasp たたかい.

見方(みかた)Ally

If I feed my cat milk, the FLAVOR sends her in my DIRECTION.
That’s why my cat (みかた) is my strongest ALLY.

波(は / なみ) Wave

The on’yomi for WAVE is は, but we need the kun’yomi. What else looks like a TSUNAMI on my SKIN? The cherry blossoms when they fall at はなみ. That’s it は (on’yomi) and なみ (kun’yomi).

流行(りゅうこう)Trend

If you GO with the flow (STREAM), you’re following the TREND.

見事(みごと)Splendid

When I LOOK at the (active) THINGS around me, my eyes stop on my SPLENDID Spanish goat, which I affectionately call Migoto みごと. What a SPLENDID THING to SEE!

商売(しょうばい)Business

A BUSINESS is a place which SHOWs things to BUY.

登山(とざん)Mountain Climbing

The most important part of MOUNTAIN CLIMBING is to keep your TOES ON (とざん) the ground. Otherwise, you’re falling!

担当(たんとう)Dagger

In the Lone Ranger, TANTO (たんとう) always carried a DAGGER.

童話(どうわ)Children’s story

Remember the children’s story about the big magic door (どうわ) that everyone pronounced with a strong accent…

“Do you want me to open the どうわ?”

球(たま、きゅう)Sphere, sports ball

Remember the white cue (きゅう) ball from billiards.
(たま is the same as ball 玉)

都合(つごう)at your convenience

The METROPOLIS is filled with little take out restaurants open at all hours. You can find anything to SUIT your tastes, get it TO GO (つごう) and eat it AT YOUR CONVENIENCE.

消化(しょうか)Digestion

The fact that we can EXTINGUISH the life in our food and CHANGE it into energy using DIGESTION is a total SHOCKER (しょうか).

Sometimes the waste product of DIGESTION is a SHOCKER (しょうか) too!

流す(ながす)to Flush

A STREAM is long (ながい) and narrow, especially when going through the sewer after a FLUSH.

要求する(ようきゅうする) to Order

When you NEED something, you just yell at your bald assistant, “Yo! CUE (ようきゅう) head, get that for me!! Do this for me!!”

You like TO ORDER him around. You’re kind of a jerk.

運(うん)Luck

It’s common in Japan to CARRY a good LUCK charm from a temple. You can even tie one to your UMbrella (うん) for LUCK.

Also, as they CARRY on a conversation, people in Japan often say
うん、うん、うん

Because they are either imagining the person is Lucky
“lucky, lucky, lucky”

Or they are being sarcastic
“Good luck with that!”

最悪(さいあく)the Worst

Siatica pain (さいあく) is THE WORST!

水深(すいしん)Water depth

You’re a pool expert! Just be feeling the water SWISHING (すいしん) around your legs, you can measure the WATER DEPTH.

Level 13

Radicals

原 Original

You see something SMALL and WHITE in the side of the CLIFF. Wow! It’s an ORIGINAL crystal (not a store bought one). Look how shiny and ORIGINAL it is!

忄Soul

After eating a fish, you’re wondering where it’s SOUL went. Then you notice the spine and fins make a little arrow pointing upward to heaven.

Wow! The fish’s SOUL is telling you it went up to heaven.

Kanji

標(ひょう)Signpost

Installing the SIGNPOSTS on the Sedona hiking trails requires 3 things, a TREE for the post, a HELICOPTER to get the post to the location, and a JACKHAMMER to make a hole in the rocks. That’s a lot of work to install SIGNPOSTS for tourists!

Yet, even with all the SIGNPOSTS, people get dangerously lost in Sedona. Every time you’re hiking you hear people yelling “Hey yo!” (ひょう) from up on the cliffs . Might need to call the HELICOPTER for a rescue!

Why can’t tourists just follow the SIGNPOSTS?

様(さま)Formal name ender

Mr. SHEEP is WATERING the TREE. Thank you sheep-SAMA, that tree needed SOME (さま) water.

輪(りん)Wheel, ring, loop

You’re lining up your CAR at the race track, wearing your lucky racing HAT. The most important part of the race is your WHEELS sticking to the GROUND. You can see the skid marks from the other drivers where their WHEELS gripped the GROUND.

But, their cars are like BOOKCASES on WHEELS compared to your hot rod!

You’re going to RING (りん) their necks when your WHEELs hit the GROUND and you LOOP around the track.

輪(わ)ring

Rings and wheels are intertwined. Rings start with wheels and wheels start with rings.

That’s why Kanji “wheel” sounds like the beginning of RINg (りん), and vocab “Ring” sounds like the beginning of WHeel (わ)

Vocab

予想(よそう)Anticipation, Expectation

When you have a CONCEPT BEFOREHAND, you have an EXPECTATION.

Like before you meet someone famous. In your head, you’re already imagining what to EXPECT, and you’re saying in your head

YOU’re SO (よそう) great!
YOU’re SO (よそう) pretty!
YOU’re SO (よそう) amazing!
YOU’re SO (よそう) perfect!

You’re full of ANTICIPATION, because of your BEFOREHAND CONCEPTS.

左利き(ひだりきき)Left handed

All PROFITS are stored in a special safe, which uses a LEFT HANDED KEY (ひだりきき) for extra security.

苦労(くろう)Hardship, Troubles

If you SUFFER and LABOR, you’re in BLACK (くろ) times of HARDSHIP and TROUBLES.

予想(よそう)Expect, Expetation

“YO! SO, (よそう) I EXPECT this will happen”. Because I have a CONCEPT BEFOREHAND.

言葉(ことば)Word

If your STORY was a tree, the LEAVES would be your WORDS.

利息(りそく)Interest

To PROFIT off your BREATH, you invest in antibacterial REbok SOCKs (りそく). Keeping people’s feet from getting smelly returns a lot of INTEREST. (And it’s interesting).

想像する(そうぞうする)to Imagine

IMAGINE why the arms are missing on so many STATUEs? IMAGINE someone took a SAWS ALL (そうぞう) to the STATUEs. Sounds fun! IMAGINE the sound and all the statue dust… and the police hauling you away with your SAWS ALL (そうぞう).

映る(うつる)to be Reflected

Sue points her webcam at the monitor, so everything is infinitely REFLECTED. Then, she says “SUE” and it too gets reflected infinitely “sue sue sue sue sue…utsu utsu utsu utsu” うつ

予想(よそう)Prediction, Expectation

The ultimate BEFORE CONCEPT is that we have a SOUL and after life.

The PREDICTION is that YOUR SOUL (よそう) will go to heaven when you die. It’s a comforting EXPECTATION.

選手(せんしゅ)Pro Athlete

You have a CHOSEN HAND for sports. SINCE YOU (せんしゅ) are so good, you’ve been chosen as a PRO ATHLETE!

事情(じじょう)Circumstances, Situation

In the middle of the ACTION, what are you FEELING? Nothing… that’s right… you’re totally peaceful and accepting… no judgment or excitement… just calmly observing the CIRCUMSTANCES.

The only ACTION you take is to tell Grandpa Joe (aka Jourm) your bland FEELINGS… “Gee Joe (じじょう), this is an interesting SITUATION, isn’t it?”

想定(そうてい)Hypothesis

You’re such an amazing SAUTE (そうてい) chef, that you instantly form a HYPOTHESIS about how to cook something, just from it’s taste and smell. You DETERMINE this CONCEPT from your vast experience as a SAUTE (そうてい) chef.

Level 14

Kanji

例(れい)Example

The LEADER of the YAKUZA pulls out his KNIFE, and threatens to make an EXAMPLE of you! Scary!

Or, maybe he’ll use the RAY (れい) gun to make an EXAMPLE out of you. Still scary, but less painful since the RAY (れい) gun will kill you faster.

卒(そつ)Graduate

Every GRADUATE puts on LID on their head as CROSSES the stage when they GRADUATE. See them walking across the stage in the kanji!

参る(まいる)to Come, to Go

You GO to PARTICIPATE in SANta’s workshop, but he yells “Wait!! This isn’t about participating. It’s about COMING and GOING, and running the extra MILE (まいる).”

Santa looks you in the eye fiercely and says
“Did you COME TO GO the extra MILE (まいる)?”

You say smugly “Yes, I CAME TO GO the extra MILE (まいる)!”

Santa smiles. You’re in!

Vocab

言葉つき(ことばつき)Speech

A WORD’s KEY (ことばつき) to SPEECH. Without it, you can’t speak.

折る(おる)to Fold

Imagine AXING your socks with your FINGERS. Is that really the best way to FOLD them?

Reading…

Imagine all the ways to FOLD your socks into SETS (せつ)…

AXE them with your FINGERS
OR (おる)
quickly FOLD them in the middle
OR (おる)
Carefully FOLD them in thirds
OR (おる) …
Roll them in a little ball
OR (おる) …
Tuck the tops together

OR (おる) …
OR (おる) …
OR (おる) …

Why are there so many ways to FOLD socks?

As long as they end up in SETS (せつ), it’s all good.

合格する(ごうかくする)Pass a Test

If you PASS A TEST, then you’re SUITED for the STATUS conferred by PASSing the TEST.

格好(かっこう)Shape, Appearance

On dating sites, people politely say “I LIKE your STATUS”. But we all know what they really mean. “I LIKE your SHAPE and APPEARANCE”.

折角(せっかく)with Difficulty

You’re shy and very polite, so it’s only WITH DIFFICULTY that can swear or mention anything related to anatomy.

When you see a rooster, you can’t even SAY “COCK” (せっかく) without blushing terribly then FOLDING over at an ANGLE and giggling nervously.

合図(あいず)Sign, signal

These kanji depict a scene where you’re driving your car by a big billboard or SIGN. Make sure you keep your EYES (あいず) on the road!

意地悪(いじわる)Malicious, Mean, Jerk

Someone with IDEAS to HARM the EARTH is like a bad (わる) anti-christ (or antい じsus). They are a MALICIOUS, MEAN, JERK, an いじわる.

映す(うつす)to Project, to Reflect

Imagine you work in an old movie theater, making sure that movie reel PROJECTS with no problems, and that the LIGHT is in the CENTER of the screen.

Once the movie starts, it’s an easy job really. You just kick back in your chair, close your eyes and listen to the rhythm of the projector.

As long as you can hear うつす、うつす、うつす、うつす、everything is PROJECTING just fine.

放つ(はなつ)to Fire (to Fart)

Japanese toilets are very polite and accommodating. When you FART, they FIRE off the scent of 2 FLOWERS (はなつ) to cover the scent.

束(たば)Bundle, Bunch

You’re carrying a BUNDLE of receipts to your accountant. He’s old school and doesn’t like computers.

He makes you tape your recipes into a a book with little TABs (たば) on the pages. One section for your restaurant TABs (たば). One section for your bar TABs (たば). etc.

Visualize this BUNCH of receipts all BUNDLEd together in a book, with TABs for each kind of TAB.

期待する(きたいする)to Anticipate, to Expect

Imagine WAITING outside the TEMPLE, ANTICIPATING a gift from a monk. It’s a KEY TIE (きたい), which you EXPECT to bring you luck in all things.

Visualize the bald robed monk walking over and seriously handing you a wide tie with golden keys hanging from it. All your ANTICIPATION was worth the wait!

願望(がんぼう)Desire

While many people’s DESIRE is world peace or everlasting love, you simply want to GAMBLE (がんぼう) all day in the casino. Good luck with that!

芸人(げいにん)Comedian(s)

Which late night ACTORS and PERFORMERS are GAINING (げいにん) popularity?

COMEDIANs of course. Because they are happy people (げいにん).

Level 15

Kanji

築(ちく)Construct, Build

You’re SAW into a BAMBOO TREE, so you can BUILD a fence around the smoking area near your house. You’re a recovering smoker and can’t stand the temptation of seeing other people smoke.

Before CONSTRUCTing the fence, you put a little tobacco in your CHEEK (ちく). Tricks like this are the KEYS (きず) to control your cravings.

Imagine the tobacco taste in your CHEEK (ちく) and the funny bump on the side of your face as you BUILD the BAMBOO fence around the smoking area.

整える(ととのえる)to Arrange

TO ARRANGE things perfectly means in TOTAL NO ERRORs (ととのえる).

Imagine looking at the pens on your desk, perfectly ARRANGEd. Congratulate yourself on TOTALLY NO ERRORS (ととのえる).

Your really PUT things IN ORDER.

Vocab

事変(じへん)Incident / 変事(へんじ)Strange Incident

If you see any ACTION (事) which is STRANGE (変), please report the INCIDENT (事変) to the authorities.

Remember, if it’s a really STRANGE INCIDENT, where 変 is first, as in 変事 (へんじ), then you can trust they’ll REPLY (also へんじ).

But, if it’s just an INCIDENT, 事変 (じへん) , you can’t trust that they’ll reply.

計画(けいかく)Project, Plan

Imagine MEASURING a PICTURE very carefully. It’s the Mona Lisa, and you don’t want to harm anything.

Your PLAN is to replace the frame with an exact copy, but it must be the exact measurements.

This is the most important and difficult PROJECT of your life. So, you make a step by step PLAN.

Reading…

As you take the frame apart, you notice the CAULK between the joints is made of birthday CAKE. This is common for Italian Renaissance art, since it added a beautiful smell to the beautiful art.

So, you carefully bake a cake to make some CAKE CAULK (けいかく). Smells delicious!

Now your art PROJECT is also a baking PROJECT!

列(れつ)Line, Queue

Two YAKUZA wives are at Don Quijote during a pandemic, and the LINE for TP is super long.

The YAKUZA really needs this TP, so one wife says “RETS (れつ) go to the front of the QUEUE/LINE?”. The other says “Hai, RETS (れつ) go!”

They out 10 deadly KNIVES each and display them in a ROW for all to see.

As expected, people move aside and they quickly move to the front of the TP LINE.

方法(ほうほう)Method, Way

Santa has an amazing METHOD for delivering toys in the right WAY. Imagine him shouting HO HO (ほうほう) as he flies his sleigh!

飯(めし)Meal

Your favorite MEALs are always MESSY (めし), like Sloppy Joe’s and watermelon.

What’s your favorite MESSY (めし) MEAL?

Level 16

Kanji

留(る、りゅう)Detain

A group of PRIVATE SWORD guys are in your RICE PADDY. You must DETAIN them at once for questioning!

That’s totally RUde (る) to be in your PRIVATE RICE PADDY, and you want to know who sent them!

箱(はこ)Box

If you put a TREE, BAMBOO, and an EYE together, what do you get?

A BOX with an hawk eye inside. How weird is that?

Imagine staring at the eye in the BOX when suddenly it turns and looks at you intently. You try to look away, but it’s staring at you like a HAWK (はこ).

A shadow passes over you, and the one eyed HAWK (はこ) deftly lifts it’s missing eye out of the BOX.

Wow! That hawk (はこ) is wacko! That’s the last time you’ll put a HAWK eye in a bamboo tree BOX!

治(じ、ち) Cure

Finally there is a CURE for cancer and all disease.

It’s called the TSUNAMI MACHINE, and when you get inside it washes you so clean that you never get sick again. You CURE all illness & cancer & offensive body odor.

It’s also a CURE for bad hair days, because it rips all your hair out. Don’t worry. It grows back squeaky clean.

The TSUNAMI MACHINE is such an affective CURE, that even JEsus (じ) tries it out. It was his idea really, because JEsus (じ) loves to CURE people.

Imagine JEsus (じ) stepping out of the TSUNAMI MACHINE, all CUREd and bald, with a piece of CHEese (ち) in his hand.

Vocab

芸術家(げいじゅつか)Artist

Say it “The ARTIST is in the house!!” Yeah :wink:

希望する(きぼうする)to Wish

I WISH I had a shiny new KEYBOard (きぼう) with lots of keys, and a fingerprint sensor, and a trackpad, …

Imagine the finest KEYBOard (きぼう) you could HOPE for. What ridiculous features would it have? Joystick? Gold plated? Leather?

I HOPE you get your WISH for your dream KEYBOard (きぼう).

固める(かためる)to Harden (make hard)

The CATApillar MALE (かためる) makes the cocoon HARDEN, so they’s strong.

The female caterpillars make cocoons soften, so they’re comfortable.

Imagine thinking how zen nature is as you watch a CATApillar MALE (かためる) HARDEN a cocoon.

保存(ほぞん)Preservation, Conservation

CONSERVATION requires setting up a PRESERVATION ZONe (aka, ほぞん).

笑顔(えがお)Smile

Your LAUGHING FACE always has a SMILE. And comedy movies make you laugh and smile until your face hurts.

Your movie face SMILE is your えいが かお, or えがお for short.

仮面(かめん)Mask

TEMPORARY FACE MASKS are COMMON (かめん) in Japan.

政府(せいふ)Government

The GOVERNMENT’s job is to keep everyone SAFE (せいふ). How are they doing?

保守的(ほしゅてき)Conservative

Imagine a bunch of CONSERVATIVE old guys throwing HORSE SHOES (ほしゅ) at a TARGET (てき), talking about how they want to PRESERVE and PROTECT themselves.

新品(しんぴん)Brand new

Wow! Look at those BRAND NEW pins. I love SHINy PINs (しんぴん)!

留守(るす)Absence, Away from Home

You are being DETAINed and PROTECTED, because you’re in the witness protection program. Your ABSENCE is a RUSE (るす), so the crime boss from Russia (るす) won’t wack you before you testify.

reading…

You also have a LOOSE (るす) mouth, which is why you turned snitch.

辞書(じしょ)Dictionary

You can QUIT WRITING when you finish the DICTIONARY, because there are no more WORDS to write!!

You’re so proud of yourself you want to SHOW (しょ) off your DICTIONARY to JEsus (じ). You want to じしょ off your DICTIONARY.

教科書(きょうかしょ)Textbook

If you forget your Japanese text book, even for one day, your teacher charges you 25 yen.

Since you forget almost every day, she now makes a joke out of it, saying “Where’s today’s (きょう) cash (かしょう)?”

証明(しょうめい)Proof, Verification

Show me (しょうめい) your PROOF!!

治安(ちあん)Public Safety

reading…

The most important part of PUBLIC SAFETY is making sure people have food. If everyone has CHEese ON (ちあん) the table, all is good!

証言(しょうげん)Testimony

Your TESTIMONY was so good, everyone started chanting “SHOW aGAIN” しょうげん, しょうげん!

Level 17

Radicals

吉 Good Luck

SAMURAIs don’t talk much. But if a SAMURAI opens his MOUTH to talk to you, you’ll have GOOD LUCK for 1 year.

Kanji

敗(はい)Failure

If the SHELLFISH in WINTER doesn’t want to be a FAILURE, they set the thermostat on HIGH (はい). Otherwise, they will slowly freeze to death, which is the ultimate SHELLFISH WINTER FAILURE.

果(か)Fruit

While driving your CAr (か), you see a FRUIT stand under a TREE next to the RICE PADDY. The FRUIT looks delicious, so you stop and fill your CAr (か) with fruit! Mmm…

常(じょう)Ordinary

It’s totally ORDINARY for Vikings to use MOUTH TOWELS because they don’t use utensils, they eat everything with their hands which is very messy.

Reading…

Grandpa JOE (じょう) always tucks his MOUTH TOWEL into his shirt while eating. He looks ridiculous, but he claims it’s totally ORDINARY since he grew up as a VIKING.

Grandpa JOE (じょう) is in fact Norwegian, but the only VIKINGS he grew up with were the Minnesota VIKINGS football team - who are pretty ORDINARY people.

識(しき)Discerning

You’re DRUNKARD friend is at the bar trying to pick up a date, but he is SAYing all his SOUNDS like a DRUNKARD. Not only is he slurring your words, but clearly his beer goggles are on. He is not DISCERNING at all as to who he tries to pick up - women, men, mannequins. It’s quite embarrassing.

Reading…

By contrast, your SHIEK (しき) friend doesn’t drink, and he’s quite DISCERNING with the ladies. Being a dashing SHIEK (しき), he’s also quite popular.

Unlike your poor DRUNKARD friend who will SAY any SOUND to get a date.

干(かん)Dry

What’s in a DRY CAN (かん)? DRY beer of course. It only comes in a CAN (かん), not a bottle.

因(いん)Cause

Your BIG MOUTH is the CAUSE of your problems, and why your foot is often IN (いん) your BIG MOUTH.

幻(げん)Illusion

Reading…
You must be GENtle (げん) with the POOP in your CAPE, otherwise it will ruin your ILLUSION (and your cape).

詳(しょう)Detailed

Counting sheep is great for falling asleep, if the sheep are DETAILED in your vision. Counting blurry sheep won’t help you fall asleep.

Reading…

The SHOgun (しょう) loves to count sheep before bed. He’s very DETAILED too, so he counts their number and their combined weight.

1… 90kg, 2… 180kg, 3… 270kg.

It’s surprising this DETAILED accounting helps him fall asleep. Perhaps he passes out from the effort.

署(しょ) Government Official

This kanji looks like a ballot - with 3 BOXES and SOMEONEs name. You get to vote for a GOVERNMENT OFFICIAL. Who will you choose?

The polling place has signs everywhere and candidates are putting on quite the SHOW (しょ). Imagine how easily someone from SHOW (しょ) biz could become president! Scary!!

無(む) Nothing

No mnemonic. Nothing. MOOT. む

虚(きょ)Void

You’re about to get eaten by a TIGER, and you’re staring at it SPIKY teeth. You’re totally focused on the teeth, and notice a small VOID between each tooth. Does this tiger have cavities? That’s why their breath smells so bad!

You politely refer the tiger to a good dentist in little Kyoto (きょ), and they decide not to eat you.

喜(き)Rejoice

When a SAMURAI puts BEANS in his MOUTH, it’s time to REJOICE! For a SAMURAI’s life is all about food, and BEANS are the KEY (き).

The SAMURAI is so happy with the BEANS in his MOUTH, he pulls out a DRUM and sings the SAMURAI BEANS song to REJOICE.

Beans are the KEY (き)
Beans are the KEY (き)
Beans are the KEY (き)
to REJOICE me!!!

(Better keep your day job Mr. Samurai)

Vocab

幻覚(げんかく)Hallucination

What kind of ILLUSION comes from your MEMORIES? A HALLUCINATION of course. Your mind MEMORIZES something shocking you see, and GENerate a HALLUCINATION later.

Remember the GENtleman doing magic on stage in tights? He saws his bikini-clad assistant in half, but she emerges unscathed.

Then her bikini gets caught and rips off. The GENtleman gets visibly aroused in his tights. It’s shocking and your mind MEMORIES the ILLUSION.

For weeks, you have HALLUCINATIONs of the topless assistant and the GENtleman’s (げん) business (かく) poking out of his tights.

You think you see them everywhere–in the grocery store, at the bank, in your bathroom, your bedroom, your kitchen, …

But, they’re just in your head. It’s a horrible げんかく HALLUCINATION.

干渉(かんしょう)Interference, Intervention

You’re about to FORD a stream to impress the SHOgan, when 3 friends stage an INTERVENTION.

They insist you DRY up, as they calmly point out that the walking across a tsunami will kill you, and that you don’t even know the SHOgan. In fact, there are no more SHOgans.

You’re shocked. “The SHOgan exists! I CAN SHOW (かんしょう) you!!”

Your friends calmly explain that it’s just a movie on TV, and you’re drunk.

Finally, you snap out of it. Thank goodness for your friends INTERFERENCE. The INTERVENTION saved your life and kept you DRY!!

幻(まぼろし)Illusion

For your best ILLUSION, you make your assistant rise into the air while feeding her MABOdufo (まぼ).

You call this amazing ILLUSION, MABOdofu-ROse-SHE, or まぼろし for short.

愛知県(あいちけん)Aichi Prefecture

Aichi prefecture is for people who KNOW LOVE. That’s why Archie & Veronica live there. It’s ARCHIKIN’s (あいちけん) favorite place!

Yeah, Riverdale is in Aichi prefecture

結果(けっか)Result

In Japan, you TIE FRUIT into a gift for people who are sick. It tells them you hope for a good healing RESULT.

Sometimes, a little CAKE (けっか) is included too :wink:

交渉(こうしょう)Negotiate

Reading… PEPPER (こうしょ) is the best thing for NEGOTIATION. When it looks like the deal will fall apart, threaten everyone with pepper spray, and they’ll concede. (If it works for the police, perhaps it will work for you too.)

Or offer everyone a delicious pepper dish, and they’ll be grateful, and agree to your NEGOTIATION!

結局(けっきょく)Eventually

When things are TIED up in BUREAcracy, it seems like forever. But they will EVENTUALLY get done AFTER ALL.

It takes a long time because they have say everything in triplicate. Instead of simply saying “oKAY” they say KE…KYO…KU.

署名(しょめい)Signature

The GOVERNMENT OFFICE in Japan always needs your SIGNATURE. The teller always says “Please SHOW ME (しょめい) your SIGNATURE” (but she really means “please sign here”)

無知(むち)Ignorance

A VOID of KNOWing is IGNORANCE. Have you noticed ignorant people are a bit moochy? (むち)

栄える(さかえる)to Prosper

How do VIKINGS really prosper? They sell viking beer at soccer games. It’s called SOCCER ALE (さかえる).

They sell ginger ale too, but it’s the soccer ale that makes them prosper.

詳しい(くわしい)Detailed

In a pandemic, it’s important to be COOL (く) about WASHING (わしい)your hands in a DETAILED way. Wash each finger, around the nails, the back of your hands, palms, thumb…

Do a very DETAILED COOL WASH (くわしい).

鼻血(はなぢ)Nose Bleed

It’s your wedding day and without warning, you get a NOSE BLEED. You’re mom yells “JEsus!” (じ) when she sees the blood on your clothes.

On queue, Jesus (じ) appears and works a reverse miracle, turning the blood into water. You’re still a little wet, but at least there’s no stain.

Thank you 鼻血(はなぢ)!

(It’s a good thing your Mom KNOWS JEsus! Get it? NOSE JEsus - LOL)

Level 18

Kanji

報(ほう)News, Report

The NEWS is HAPPY when looking in peoples CLOSETS. The darker the secret the better the NEWS REPORT

That’s why paparazzi hide outside your HOme (ほう) or try to catch you in some HOrrible (ほう) act. They want to find the juiciest NEWS for their REPORT.

可(か) Possible

You wanted a LIP RING, and your Dad freaked out.

Is it POSSIBLE to talk normally with a LIP RING?
Is it POSSIBLE to eat normally with a LIP RING?
Is it POSSIBLE to kiss with a LIP RING?

Yeah “What is POSSIBLE?” you think. Thanks Dad for convincing me to get a LIP RING and find out what’s POSSIBLE. Love you Dad!

座(ざ)Sit, Seat

Looks like a big canopy with rows of seats (bleachers) where 2 people SIT. What SEAT do you want to SIT in?

Apparently, the canopy is there to keep the magic in.
It’s time to find an empty seat for the wiZArd (ざ) show. How exciting!

Vocab

人種(じんしゅ)Race

The TYPE of PERSON is their RACE.

Easy to confuse with 人類(じんるい)Mankind.

You know this one is RACE because there’s a RACE CAR in the 2nd kanji.

品物(しなもの)Goods

My favorite ITEM or GOODS is CINNAMON (しなもの). Mmmm… smell that cinnamon smell in the warehouse and showroom where all the GOODS and ITEMS are.

禁句(きんく)Taboo word

The KING PROHIBITS SENTENCES with TABOO words. He says “It’s all KINK (きんく)” (perhaps he means kinky?)

借金(しゃっきん)Debt

When you BORROW MONEY, the cost of your DEBT is truly SHOCKING (しゃっきん)

It’s also SHOCKING (しゃっきん) how many people are in DEBT, despite the cost.

文句(もんく)Complaint

All COMPLAINTS must be submitted to the MONK (もんく) in a WRITTEN PARAGRAPH.

借家(しゃくや、しゃっか)Renting a House

You are BORROWING a HOUSE (renting a house) in Jamaica, but all you can find is a rundown SHACK (しゃっか). Even the owner agrees “It’s a Shaku ya (しゃくや)”.

取り決め(とりきめ)Arrangement

It’s TRICKY to MAke (とりきめ) an ARRANGEMENT that everyone is happy with.

You need to TAKE everyones DECISIONs into consideration.

許す(ゆるす)to Permit

Your neighbor wants the city TO PERMIT a 3 story parking garage next to your house which will block your sunsets forever! You hate the idea, but it’s upto the city.

Unfortunately, YOU LOSE (ゆるす), and the PERMIT is granted.

幸い(さいわい)Happiness

HAPPINESS is riding SIDE WINDER (さいわい) roller coaster! Nothing gives you more HAPPINESS.

Level 19

Kanji

閥(ばつ)Clique, Clan

Non-violent reading…
The DUNKARD at the GATE wasn’t just a LEADER of any old CLIQUE, he was batman! You can tell because his pajamas have BATS (ばつ) all over them. Poor batman, all washed up, drunk & passed out in his pajamas.

If only his bat CLIQUE & bat CLAN could see him now…

乱(らん)Riot

You accidentally stabbed a man in the TONGUE with an UMBRELLA and started a RIOT.

You’re trying to apologize, but the man RAN (らん) away as blood RAN (らん) down his tongue.

減(げん)Decrease

The TSUNAMI FEELING is intense at first, but it quickly DECREASEs to a GENtle (げん) wave.

続(ぞく)Continue

For generations your family CONTINUES to SELL THREAD at a little store in Ginza. It’s a good business and supports the entire tribe (族、ぞく).

As long as you CONTINUE to SELL THREAD, your entire tribe (族、ぞく) will CONTINUE to thrive, and you can all SOAK (ぞく) in the hot springs leisurely after work.

絡(らく)Entangle

A THREAD gets ENTANGLEd in your braces while KISSing.

It’s completely ENTANGLEd in the RACK (らく) of braces.

Feel the joy.

混(こん)Mix

You judge a salsa cooking contest and COMPARE the MIX of SUN (heat) and TSUNAMI (water) in each dish.

The winner for the best MIX is always chili CON (こん) carne, which makes your mouth feel like a TSUNAMI and SUN are MIXing together

夢(む)Dream

What’s that thing with FLOWERY NET that’s over your FOREHEAD at NIGHT?

It’s a dreamweaver to help you DREAM positive dreams, where cows are gently MOOing you to sleep (む… む… む…)

Vocab

乱れる(みだれる)to be In Disorder/Disarray

There are RIOTS and all hell’s breaking loose! The city is IN DISORDER.

Why? Because people hate the new parking meters (みだ). Parking was free until now, and no one wants to pay for it. So, people are pulling out the meters (みだ) and parking all over the place. It’s city is IN DISORDER and IN DISARRAY.

容疑(ようぎ)Suspicion

The YOGI (ようぎ) has DOUBT about his FORM. Even when standing on his head, he holds SUSPICION that people are laughing and pointing at his FORM.

布(ぬの)Cloth

CLOTH is used for all NEW NOtes (ぬの) of money. Paper money is gone. It’s all CLOTH money now.

All the NEW NOtes (ぬの) are made of CLOTH. Throw away all that paper money right now.

大失敗(だいしっぱい)Huge Mistake

An example of an EPIC FAILURE?

Remember the family picnic, when you dropped grandma’s famous pie on the ground, and everyone gasped in horror. That was DIE SHE PIE (だいしっぱい), a BIG MISTAKE, and EPIC FAILURE.

It still comes up at every family gathering “Remember when grandma’s pie bit the dust?” (And everyone looks despairingly at you)

得る(える)to Acquire

To ACQUIRE the reading of this word, don’t say とくる, because that would be an ERR (える). The correct reading is える, which is not an ERR.

乱暴(らんぼう)Assault

If there is VIOLENCE at a RIOT, and you begin hitting people with an UMBRELLA in the TONGUE, it’s ASSAULT.

Remember the 12th RAMBO (らんぼう) sequel, where Sylvester Stallone is 85 and ASSAULTING people with his UMBRELLA cane. It was more of a laugh RIOT than real VIOLENCE.

説得(せっとく)Persuasion

If you AQUIRE someone’s THEORY of life, you can use it for PERSUASION.

If you tell people what they already believe, they’ll trust you, then they’ll believe other things you say too.

reading…

You have to be part of someone’s group for PERSUASION to work. For example, if you want to persuade a smoker, you have to pretend to be a smoker.

“SAY, TOKing (せっとく)up is great isn’t it!” then you’re in, you’re acquired their PERSUASION!

余る(あまる)to be in surplus

The Kanji looks like an “A” on top of an “M”. That’s why it’s pronounced あまる.

加える(くわえる)to Add

If you want to look COOL WHILE (くわえる) you wait, ADD nuts to your MOUTH one by one, slowly chew them, then ADD another.

You’re so COOL WHILE (くわえる) you wait.

Level 20

Kanji

罪(ざい)Guilt

A CRIMINAL with a hair NET is a sure sign of GUILT. He’s hoping the NET will indicate he has gone straight and has a job as a fast food chef, but his GUILT is evident in his face.

論 (ろん) Theory

Just after dramatically throwing your HAT on the GROUND by the BOOKSHELF and declaring “I have a THEORY”, you realize that your THEORY is WRONG (ろん).

Oh well. THEORIES are like that. Some are right. Some are WRONG (ろん).

率(りつ)Percent

The PERCENT of RITZ (りつ) crackers determines how tasty the soup is. The RITZ (りつ) hotel has the best soup, because the PERCENT of RITZ (りつ) crackers there is the highest!

倒産(とうさん)Bankruptcy

The bad news is you went BANKRUPT, but the good news is your a new FATHER (とうさん). You’re not おとうさん though because the bank took away all your おs in the bankruptcy.

犯人(はんにん)Criminal(s)

In ancient times, you could see CRIMINALS HANGING (はんにん) in the public square. Glad that’s over!

罪(つみ)Crime

The CRIMINAL in the hair NET says “I’ve committed a CRIME? Then SUE ME! (つみ). I don’t feel any GUILT.”

穴場(あなば)Hole in the wall

This PLACE is just ANOTHER (あなば) HOLE IN THE WALL, sung like the old Pink Floyd song… another (あなば) brick in the wall.

絡む(からむ)to be Entangled

A thread BECAME ENTANGLED during a kiss. The good news is you ate CARAMEL (からむ) before kissing, so at least your partner has a nice flavor in their mouth while waiting to get help. Unless they hate CARAMEL (からむ), in which case this is probably your last kiss.

飛ぶ(とぶ)to Fly

Every time you board a plane TO FLY somewhere, you stub your TOE on the door, then hit your TOE again on the seat. You even stub your TOE in the tiny bathroom.

It’s so sad and painful. You always have a TOE BOO boo (とぶ) when you fly.

16 Likes

13

輪(わ)ring

Rings and wheels are intertwined. Rings start with wheels and wheels start with rings.

That’s why Kanji “wheel” sounds like the beginning of RINg (りん), and vocab “Ring” sounds like the beginning of WHeel (わ)

14

折る(おる)to Fold

Imagine AXING your socks with your FINGERS. Is that really the best way to FOLD them?

Reading…

Imagine all the ways to FOLD your socks into SETS (せつ)…

AXE them with your FINGERS
OR (おる)
quickly FOLD them in the middle
OR (おる)
Carefully FOLD them in thirds
OR (おる) …
Roll them in a little ball
OR (おる) …
Tuck the tops together

OR (おる) …
OR (おる) …
OR (おる) …

Why are there so many ways to FOLD socks?

As long as they end up in SETS (せつ), it’s all good.

合格する(ごうかくする)to Pass a test

If you PASS A TEST, then you’re SUITED for the STATUS conferred by PASSing the TEST.

格好(かっこう)Shape, Appearance

On dating sites, people politely say “I LIKE your STATUS”. But we all know what they really mean. “I LIKE your SHAPE and APPEARANCE”.

折角(せっかく)with Difficulty

You’re shy and very polite, so it’s only WITH DIFFICULTY that can swear or mention anything related to anatomy.

When you see a rooster, you can’t even SAY “COCK” (せっかく) without blushing terribly then FOLDING over at an ANGLE and giggling nervously.

合図(あいず)Sign, signal

These kanji depict a scene where you’re driving your car by a big billboard or SIGN. Make sure you keep your EYES (あいず) on the road!

意地悪(いじわる)Malicious, Mean, Jerk

Someone with IDEAS to HARM the EARTH is like a bad (わる) anti-christ (or antい じsus). They are a MALICIOUS, MEAN, JERK, an いじわる.

映す(うつす)to Project, to Reflect

You work in an old movie theater, making sure that movie reel PROJECTS with no problems, and that the LIGHT is in the CENTER of the screen.

Once the movie starts, it’s an easy job really. You just kick back in your chair, close your eyes and listen to the rhythm of the projector.

As long as you can hear うつす、うつす、うつす、うつす、everything is PROJECTING just fine.

放つ(はなつ)to Fire (to Fart)

Japanese toilets are very polite and accommodating. When you FART, they FIRE off the scent of 2 FLOWERS (はなつ) to cover the scent.

事変(じへん)Incident, 変事(へんじ)Strange Incident

If you see any ACTION (事) which is STRANGE (変), please report the INCIDENT (事変) to the authorities.

Remember, if it’s a really STRANGE INCIDENT, where 変 is first, as in 変事 (へんじ), then you can trust they’ll REPLY (also へんじ).

But, if it’s just an INCIDENT, 事変 (じへん) , you can’t trust that they’ll reply.

計画(けいかく)Project, Plan

Imagine MEASURING a PICTURE very carefully. It’s the Mona Lisa, and you don’t want to harm anything.

Your PLAN is to replace the frame with an exact copy, but it must be the exact measurements.

This is the most important and difficult PROJECT of your life. So, you make a step by step PLAN.

Reading…

As you take the frame apart, you notice the CAULK between the joints is made of birthday CAKE. This is common for Italian Renaissance art, since it added a beautiful smell to the beautiful art.

So, you carefully bake a cake to make some CAKE CAULK (けいかく). Smells delicious!

Now your art PROJECT is also a baking PROJECT!

列(れつ)Line, Queue

Two YAKUZA wives are at Don Quijote during a pandemic, and the LINE for TP is super long.

The YAKUZA really needs this TP, so one wife says “RETS (れつ) go to the front of the LINE/QUEUE?”. The other says “Hai, RETS (れつ) go!”

They out 10 deadly KNIVES each and display them in a ROW for all to see.

As expected, people move aside and they quickly move to the front of the TP LINE.

1 Like

築(ちく)Construct, Build

You’re SAW into a BAMBOO TREE, so you can BUILD a fence around the smoking area near your house. You’re a recovering smoker and can’t stand the temptation of seeing other people smoke.

Before CONSTRUCTing the fence, you put a little tobacco in your CHEEK (ちく). Tricks like this are the KEYS (きず) to control your cravings.

Imagine the tobacco taste in your CHEEK (ちく) and the funny bump on the side of your face as you BUILD the BAMBOO fence around the smoking area.

束(たば)Bundle, Bunch

You’re carrying a BUNDLE of receipts to your accountant. He’s old school and doesn’t like computers.

He makes you tape your recipes into a a book with little TABs (たば) on the pages. One section for your restaurant TABs (たば). One section for your bar TABs (たば). etc.

Visualize this BUNCH of receipts all BUNDLEd together in a book, with TABs for each kind of TAB.

1 Like

期待する(きたいする)to anticipate

Imagine WAITING outside the TEMPLE, ANTICIPATING a gift from a monk. It’s a KEY TIE (きたい), which you EXPECT to bring you luck in all things.

Visualize the bald robed monk walking over and seriously handing you a wide tie with golden keys hanging from it. All your ANTICIPATION was worth the wait!

方法(ほうほう)Method, Way

Santa has an amazing METHOD for delivering toys in the right WAY. Imagine him shouting HO HO (ほうほう) as he flies his sleigh!

15

整える(ととのえる)to Arrange

TO ARRANGE things perfectly means in TOTAL NO ERRORs (ととのえる).

Imagine looking at the pens on your desk, perfectly ARRANGEd. Congratulate yourself on TOTALLY NO ERRORS (ととのえる).

Your really PUT things IN ORDER.

16

留(る、りゅう)Detain

A group of PRIVATE SWORD guys are in your RICE PADDY. You must DETAIN them at once for questioning!

That’s totally RUde (る) to be in your PRIVATE RICE PADDY, and you want to know who sent them!

箱(はこ)Box

If you put a TREE, BAMBOO, and an EYE together, what do you get?

A BOX with an hawk eye inside. How weird is that?

Imagine staring at the eye in the BOX when suddenly it turns and looks at you intently. You try to look away, but it’s staring at you like a HAWK (はこ).

A shadow passes over you, and the one eyed HAWK (はこ) deftly lifts it’s missing eye out of the BOX.

Wow! That hawk (はこ) is wacko! That’s the last time you’ll put a HAWK eye in a bamboo tree BOX!

芸術家(げいじゅつか)Artist

Say it “The ARTIST is in the house!!” Yeah :wink:

希望する(きぼうする)to Wish

I WISH I had a shiny new KEYBOard (きぼう) with lots of keys, and a fingerprint sensor, and a trackpad, …

Imagine the finest KEYBOard (きぼう) you could HOPE for. What ridiculous features would it have? Joystick? Gold plated? Leather?

I HOPE you get your WISH for your dream KEYBOard (きぼう).

固める(かためる)to Harden (make hard)

The CATApillar MALE (かためる) makes the cocoon HARDEN, so they’s strong.

The female caterpillars make cocoons soften, so they’re comfortable.

Imagine thinking how zen nature is as you watch a CATApillar MALE (かためる) HARDEN a cocoon.

16

Kanji

治(じ、ち) Cure

Finally there is a CURE for cancer and all disease.

It’s called the TSUNAMI MACHINE, and when you get inside it washes you so clean that you never get sick again. You CURE all illness & cancer & offensive body odor.

It’s also a CURE for bad hair days, because it rips all your hair out. Don’t worry. It grows back squeaky clean.

The TSUNAMI MACHINE is such an affective CURE, that even JEsus (じ) tries it out. It was his idea really, because JEsus (じ) loves to CURE people.

Imagine JEsus (じ) stepping out of the TSUNAMI MACHINE, all CUREd and bald, with a piece of CHEese (ち) in his hand.

Vocab

保存(ほぞん)Preservation, Conservation

CONSERVATION requires setting up a PRESERVATION ZONe (aka, ほぞん).

笑顔(えがお)Smile

Your LAUGHING FACE always has a SMILE.

And comedy movies make you laugh and smile until your face hurts.

Your movie face SMILE is your えいが かお, or えがお for short.

仮面(かめん)Mask

TEMPORARY FACE MASKS are COMMON (かめん) in Japan.

政府(せいふ)Government

The GOVERNMENT’s job is to keep everyone SAFE (せいふ). How are they doing?

保守的(ほしゅてき)Conservative

Imagine a bunch of CONSERVATIVE old guys throwing HORSE SHOES (ほしゅ) at a TARGET (てき), talking about how they want to PRESERVE and PROTECT themselves.

新品(しんぴん)Brand new

Wow! Look at those BRAND NEW pins. I love SHINy PINs (しんぴん)!

留守(るす)Absence

If someone is DETAINed then PROTECTED, they are in the witness protection program. Their ABSENCE is a RUSE (るす), so the crime boss won’t whack them before they testify.

The also have a LOOSE (るす) mouth, which is why they turned snitch.

辞書(じしょ)Dictionary

You can QUIT WRITING when you finish the DICTIONARY, because there are no more WORDS to write!!

You’re so proud of yourself you want to SHOW (しょ) off your DICTIONARY to JEsus (じ). You want to じしょ off your DICTIONARY.

Level 17

Radicals

吉 Good Luck

SAMURAIs don’t talk much. But if a SAMURAI opens his MOUTH to talk to you, you’ll have GOOD LUCK for 1 year.

Kanji

敗(はい)Failure

If the SHELLFISH in WINTER doesn’t want to be a FAILURE, they set the thermostat on HIGH (はい). Otherwise, they will slowly freeze to death, which is the ultimate SHELLFISH WINTER FAILURE.

果(か)Fruit

While driving your CAr (か), you see a FRUIT stand under a TREE next to the RICE PADDY. The FRUIT looks delicious, so you stop and fill your CAr (か) with fruit! Mmm…

常(じょう)Ordinary

It’s totally ORDINARY for Vikings to use MOUTH TOWELS because they don’t use utensils, they eat everything with their hands which is very messy.

Reading…

Grandpa JOE (じょう) always tucks his MOUTH TOWEL into his shirt while eating. He looks ridiculous, but he claims it’s totally ORDINARY since he grew up as a VIKING.

Grandpa JOE (じょう) is in fact Norwegian, but the only VIKINGS he grew up with were the Minnesota VIKINGS football team - who are pretty ORDINARY people.

識(しき)Discerning

You’re DRUNKARD friend is at the bar trying to pick up a date, but he is SAYing all his SOUNDS like a DRUNKARD. Not only is he slurring your words, but clearly his beer goggles are on. He is not DISCERNING at all as to who he tries to pick up - women, men, mannequins. It’s quite embarrassing.

Reading…

By contrast, your SHIEK (しき) friend doesn’t drink, and he’s quite DISCERNING with the ladies. Being a dashing SHIEK (しき), he’s also quite popular.

Unlike your poor DRUNKARD friend who will SAY any SOUND to get a date.

干(かん)Dry

What’s in a DRY CAN (かん)? DRY beer of course. It only comes in a CAN (かん), not a bottle.

因(いん)Cause

Your BIG MOUTH is the CAUSE of your problems, and why your foot is often IN (いん) your BIG MOUTH.

幻(げん)Illusion

Reading…
You must be GENtle (げん) with the POOP in your CAPE, otherwise it will ruin your ILLUSION (and your cape).

詳(しょう)Detailed

Counting sheep is great for falling asleep, if the sheep are DETAILED in your vision. Counting blurry sheep won’t help you fall asleep.

Reading…

The SHOgun (しょう) loves to count sheep before bed. He’s very DETAILED too, so he counts their number and their combined weight.

1… 90kg, 2… 180kg, 3… 270kg.

It’s surprising this DETAILED accounting helps him fall asleep. Perhaps he passes out from the effort.

署(しょ) Government Official

This kanji looks like a ballot - with 3 BOXES and SOMEONEs name. You get to vote for a GOVERNMENT OFFICIAL. Who will you choose?

The polling place has signs everywhere and candidates are putting on quite the SHOW (しょ). Imagine how easily someone from SHOW (しょ) biz could become president! Scary!!

無(む) Nothing

No mnemonic. Nothing. MOOT. む

虚(きょ)Void

You’re about to get eaten by a TIGER, and you’re staring at it SPIKY teeth. You’re totally focused on the teeth, and notice a small VOID between each tooth. Does this tiger have cavities? That’s why their breath smells so bad!

You politely refer the tiger to a good dentist in little Kyoto (きょ), and they decide not to eat you.

Vocab

干渉(かんしょう)Interference, Intervention

You’re about to FORD a stream to impress the SHOgan, when 3 friends stage an INTERVENTION.

They insist you DRY up, as they calmly point out that the walking across a tsunami will kill you, and that you don’t even know the SHOgan. In fact, there are no more SHOgans.

You’re shocked. “The SHOgan exists! I CAN SHOW (かんしょう) you!!”

Your friends calmly explain that it’s just a movie on TV, and you’re drunk.

Finally, you snap out of it. Thank goodness for your friends INTERFERENCE. The INTERVENTION saved your life and kept you DRY!!

幻(まぼろし)Illusion

For your best ILLUSION, you make your assistant rise into the air while feeding her MABOdufo (まぼ).

You call this amazing ILLUSION, MABOdofu-ROse-SHE, or まぼろし for short.

愛知県(あいちけん)Aichi Prefecture

Aichi prefecture is for people who KNOW LOVE. That’s why Archie & Veronica live there. It’s ARCHIKIN’s (あいちけん) favorite place!

Yeah, Riverdale is in Aichi prefecture

結果(けっか)Result

In Japan, you TIE FRUIT into a gift for people who are sick. It tells them you hope for a good healing RESULT.

Sometimes, a little CAKE (けっか) is included too :wink:

交渉(こうしょう)Negotiate

Reading… PEPPER (こうしょ) is the best thing for NEGOTIATION. When it looks like the deal will fall apart, threaten everyone with pepper spray, and they’ll concede. (If it works for the police, perhaps it will work for you too.)

Or offer everyone a delicious pepper dish, and they’ll be grateful, and agree to your NEGOTIATION!

結局(けっきょく)Eventually

When things are TIED up in BUREAcracy, it seems like forever. But they will EVENTUALLY get done AFTER ALL.

It takes a long time because they have say everything in triplicate. Instead of simply saying “oKAY” they say KE…KYO…KU.

署名(しょめい)Signature

The GOVERNMENT OFFICE in Japan always needs your SIGNATURE. The teller always says “Please SHOW ME (しょめい) your SIGNATURE” (but she really means “please sign here”)

無知(むち)Ignorance

A VOID of KNOWing is IGNORANCE. Have you noticed ignorant people are a bit moochy? (むち)

栄える(さかえる)to Prosper

How do VIKINGS really prosper? They sell viking beer at soccer games. It’s called SOCCER ALE (さかえる).

They sell ginger ale too, but it’s the soccer ale that makes them prosper.

詳しい(くわしい)Detailed

In a pandemic, it’s important to be COOL (く) about WASHING (わしい)your hands in a DETAILED way. Wash each finger, around the nails, the back of your hands, palms, thumb…

Do a very DETAILED COOL WASH (くわしい).

16

教科書(きょうかしょ)Textbook

If you forget your Japanese text book, even for one day, your teacher charges you 25 yen.

Since you forget almost every day, she now makes a joke out of it, saying “Where’s today’s (きょう) cash (かしょう)?”

証明(しょうめい)Proof, Verification

Show me (しょうめい) your PROOF!!

治安(ちあん)Public Safety

reading…

The most important part of PUBLIC SAFETY is making sure people have food. If everyone has CHEese ON (ちあん) the table, all is good!

18

Kanji

報(ほう)News, Report

The NEWS is HAPPY when looking in peoples CLOSETS. The darker the secret the better the NEWS REPORT

That’s why paparazzi hide outside your HOme (ほう) or try to catch you in some HOrrible (ほう) act. They want to find the juiciest NEWS for their REPORT.

可(か) Possible

You wanted a LIP RING, and your Dad freaked out.

Is it POSSIBLE to talk normally with a LIP RING?
Is it POSSIBLE to eat normally with a LIP RING?
Is it POSSIBLE to kiss with a LIP RING?

Yeah “What is POSSIBLE?” you think. Thanks Dad for convincing me to get a LIP RING and find out what’s POSSIBLE. Love you Dad!

座(ざ)Sit

Looks like a big canopy with rows of seats (bleachers) where 2 people SIT. Where do you want to SIT?

Apparently, the canopy is there to keep the magic in.
It’s time to find an empty seat for the wiZArd (ざ) show. How exciting!

閥(ばつ)Clique, Clan

Non-violent reading…
The DUNKARD at the GATE wasn’t just a LEADER of any old CLIQUE, he was batman! You can tell because his pajamas have BATS (ばつ) all over them. Poor batman, all washed up, drunk & passed out in his pajamas.

If only his bat CLIQUE & bat CLAN could see him now…

Vocab

借金(しゃっきん)Debt

When you BORROW MONEY, the cost of your DEBT is truly SHOCKING (しゃっきん)

It’s also SHOCKING (しゃっきん) how many people are in DEBT, despite the cost.

文句(もんく)Complaint

All COMPLAINTS must be submitted to the MONK (もんく) in a WRITTEN PARAGRAPH.

Thank you for setting up this stream of great ideas, and to all those who have contributed - it’s just GREAT when I get stuck with a leech and can’t think of a mnemonic that sticks!! I wish I was as imaginative as you all are.

Just realised they are ALL from jeff8v7!!! My mind is blown away! Even more thankyous.

1 Like

Level 19 Kanji

乱(らん)Riot

You accidentally stabbed a man in the TONGUE with an UMBRELLA and started a RIOT.

You’re trying to apologize, but the man RAN (らん) away as blood RAN (らん) down his tongue.

減(げん)Decrease

The TSUNAMI FEELING is intense at first, but it quickly DECREASEs to a GENtle (げん) wave.

続(ぞく)Continue

For generations your family CONTINUES to SELL THREAD at a little store in Ginza. It’s a good business and supports the entire tribe (族、ぞく).

As long as you CONTINUE to SELL THREAD, your entire tribe (族、ぞく) will CONTINUE to thrive, and you can all SOAK (ぞく) in the hot springs leisurely after work.

絡(らく)Entangle

A THREAD gets stuck in your braces while KISSing.

It’s completely ENTANGLEd in the RACK (らく) of braces.

Feel the joy.

混(こん)Mix

You judge a salsa cooking contest and COMPARE the MIX of SUN (heat) and TSUNAMI (water) in each dish.

The winner for the best MIX is always chili CON (こん) carne, which makes your mouth feel like a TSUNAMI and SUN are MIXing together

夢(む)Dream

What’s that thing with FLOWERY NET that’s over your FOREHEAD at NIGHT?

It’s a dreamweaver to help you DREAM positive dreams, where cows are gently MOOing you to sleep (む… む… む…)

11

支度 (したく) Preparation

You want to SUPPORT an important OCCURRENCE, a meeting about global warming by several DEGREES.

Everyone will sitting in a YURT on STOOLS, and you’re in charge of the PREPARATION.

As part of the PREPARATION, you arranged the stools in the yurt, then hang posters on the wall. It’s breezy in the yurt, so you use FOUR (し) TACKS (たく) each, 1 in each corner.

See the posters with 2 or 3 tacks blowing away in the wind. You must use FOUR (し) TACKS (たく) in your PREPARATION.

14

言葉つき(ことばつき)Speech

A WORD’s KEY (ことばつき) to SPEECH. Without it, you can’t speak.

17

幻覚(げんかく)Hallucination

What kind of ILLUSION comes from your MEMORIES? A HALLUCINATION of course. Your mind MEMORIZES something shocking you see, and GENerate a HALLUCINATION later.

Remember the GENtleman doing magic on stage in tights? He saws his bikini-clad assistant in half, but she emerges unscathed.

Then her bikini gets caught and rips off. The GENtleman gets visibly aroused in his tights. It’s shocking and your mind MEMORIES the ILLUSION.

For weeks, you have HALLUCINATIONs of the topless assistant and the GENtleman’s (げん) business (かく) poking out of his tights.

You think you see them everywhere–in the grocery store, at the bank, in your bathroom, your bedroom, your kitchen, …

But, they’re just in your head. It’s a horrible げんかく HALLUCINATION.

18

人種(じんしゅ)Race

The TYPE of PERSON is their RACE.

Easy to confuse with 人類(じんるい)Mankind.

You know this one is RACE because there’s a RACE CAR in the 2nd kanji.

品物(しなもの)Goods

My favorite ITEM or GOODS is CINNAMON (しなもの). Mmmm… smell that cinnamon smell in the warehouse and showroom where all the GOODS and ITEMS are.

禁句(きんく)Taboo word

The KING PROHIBITS SENTENCES with TABOO words. He says “It’s all KINK (きんく)” (perhaps he means kinky?)

19

乱れる(みだれる)to be In Disorder/Disarray

There are RIOTS and all hell’s breaking loose! The city is IN DISORDER.

Why? Because people hate the new parking meters (みだ). Parking was free until now, and no one wants to pay for it. So, people are pulling out the meters (みだ) and parking all over the place. It’s city is IN DISORDER and IN DISARRAY.

Kanji

17

喜(き)Rejoice

When a SAMURAI puts BEANS in his MOUTH, it’s time to REJOICE! For a SAMURAI’s life is all about food, and BEANS are the KEY (き).

The SAMURAI is so happy with the BEANS in his MOUTH, he pulls out a DRUM and sings the SAMURAI BEANS song to REJOICE.

Beans are the KEY (き)
Beans are the KEY (き)
Beans are the KEY (き)
to REJOICE me!!!

(Better keep your day job Mr. Samurai)

20

罪(ざい)Guilt

A CRIMINAL with a hair NET is a sure sign of GUILT. He’s hoping the NET will indicate he has gone straight and has a job as a fast food chef, but his GUILT is evident in his face.

論 (ろん) Theory

Just after dramatically throwing your HAT on the GROUND by the BOOKSHELF and declaring “I have a THEORY”, you realize that your THEORY is WRONG (ろん).

Oh well. THEORIES are like that. Some are right. Some are WRONG (ろん).

vocab

13

映る(うつる)to be Reflected

Sue points her webcam at the monitor, so everything is infinitely REFLECTED. Then, she says “SUE” and it too gets reflected infinitely “sue sue sue sue sue…utsu utsu utsu utsu” うつ

予想(よそう)Prediction, Expectation

The ultimate BEFORE CONCEPT is that we have a SOUL and after life.

The PREDICTION is that YOUR SOUL (よそう) will go to heaven when you die. It’s a comforting EXPECTATION.

17

鼻血(はなぢ)Nose Bleed

It’s your wedding day and without warning, you get a NOSE BLEED. You’re mom yells “JEsus!” (じ) when she sees the blood on your clothes.

On queue, Jesus (じ) appears and works a reverse miracle, turning the blood into water. You’re still a little wet, but at least there’s no stain.

Thank you 鼻血(はなぢ)!

(It’s a good thing your Mom KNOWS JEsus! Get it? NOSE JEsus - LOL)

19

容疑(ようぎ)Suspicion

The YOGI (ようぎ) has DOUBT about his FORM. Even when standing on his head, he holds SUSPICION that people are laughing and pointing at his FORM.

布(ぬの)Cloth

CLOTH is used for all NEW NOtes (ぬの) of money. Paper money is gone. It’s all CLOTH money now.

All the NEW NOtes (ぬの) are made of CLOTH. Throw away all that paper money right now.

大失敗(だいしっぱい)Huge Mistake

An example of an EPIC FAILURE?

Remember the family picnic, when you dropped grandma’s famous pie on the ground, and everyone gasped in horror. That was DIE SHE PIE (だいしっぱい), a BIG MISTAKE, and EPIC FAILURE.

It still comes up at every family gathering “Remember when grandma’s pie bit the dust?” (And everyone looks despairingly at you)

Kanji 20

率(りつ)Percent

The PERCENT of RITZ (りつ) crackers determines how tasty the soup is. The RITZ (りつ) hotel has the best soup, because the PERCENT of RITZ (りつ) crackers there is the highest!

Vocab

12

深夜(しんや)Middle of the Night

Seniors (しんや) often wake up in the MIDDLE OF THE NIGHT.

13

予想(よそう)Anticipation, Expectation

When you have a CONCEPT BEFOREHAND, you have an EXPECTATION.

Like before you meet someone famous. In your head, you’re already imagining what to EXPECT, and you’re saying in your head

YOU’re SO (よそう) great!
YOU’re SO (よそう) pretty!
YOU’re SO (よそう) amazing!
YOU’re SO (よそう) perfect!

You’re full of ANTICIPATION, because of your BEFOREHAND CONCEPTS.

選手(せんしゅ)Pro Athlete

You have a CHOSEN HAND for sports. SINCE YOU (せんしゅ) are so good, you’ve been chosen as a PRO ATHLETE!

14

願望(がんぼう)Desire

While many people’s DESIRE is world peace or everlasting love, you simply want to GAMBLE (がんぼう) all day in the casino. Good luck with that!

15

飯(めし)Meal

Your favorite MEALs are always MESSY (めし), like Sloppy Joe’s and watermelon.

What’s your favorite MESSY (めし) MEAL?

18

借家(しゃくや、しゃっか)Renting a House

You are BORROWING a HOUSE (renting a house) in Jamaica, but all you can find is a rundown SHACK (しゃっか). Even the owner agrees “It’s a Shaku ya (しゃくや)”.

取り決め(とりきめ)Arrangement

It’s TRICKY to MAke (とりきめ) an ARRANGEMENT that everyone is happy with.

You need to TAKE everyones DECISIONs into consideration.

19

得る(える)to Acquire

To ACQUIRE the reading of this word, don’t say とくる, because that would be an ERR (える). The correct reading is える, which is not an ERR.

乱暴(らんぼう)Assault

If there is VIOLENCE at a RIOT, and you begin hitting people with an UMBRELLA in the TONGUE, it’s ASSAULT.

Remember the 12th RAMBO (らんぼう) sequel, where Sylvester Stallone is 85 and ASSAULTING people with his UMBRELLA cane. It was more of a laugh RIOT than real VIOLENCE.

説得(せっとく)Persuasion

If you AQUIRE someone’s THEORY of life, you can use it for PERSUASION.

If you tell people what they already believe, they’ll trust you, then they’ll believe other things you say too.

reading…

You have to be part of someone’s group for PERSUASION to work. For example, if you want to persuade a smoker, you have to pretend to be a smoker.

“SAY, TOKing (せっとく)up is great isn’t it!” then you’re in, you’re acquired their PERSUASION!

11

指す(さす)to Point

Use your FINGER to POINT across the table and say “Please pass me some salsa SAUCE (さす)”… which is redundant, because “salsa” already means SAUCE (さす).

13

事情(じじょう)Circumstances, Situation

In the middle of the ACTION, what are you FEELING? Nothing… that’s right… you’re totally peaceful and accepting… no judgment or excitement… just calmly observing the CIRCUMSTANCES.

The only ACTION you take is to tell Grandpa Joe (aka Jourm) your bland FEELINGS… “Gee Joe (じじょう), this is an interesting SITUATION, isn’t it?”

想定(そうてい)Hypothesis

You’re such an amazing SAUTE (そうてい) chef, that you instantly form a HYPOTHESIS about how to cook something, just from it’s taste and smell. You DETERMINE this CONCEPT from your vast experience as a SAUTE (そうてい) chef.

14

芸人(げいにん)Comedian(s)

Which late night ACTORS and PERFORMERS are GAINING (げいにん) popularity?

COMEDIANs of course. Because they are happy people (げいにん).

18

許す(ゆるす)to Permit

Your neighbor wants the city TO PERMIT a 3 story parking garage next to your house which will block your sunsets forever! You hate the idea, but it’s upto the city.

Unfortunately, YOU LOSE (ゆるす), and the PERMIT is granted.

19

余る(あまる)to be in surplus

The Kanji looks like an “A” on top of an “M”. That’s why it’s pronounced あまる.

加える(くわえる)to Add

If you want to look COOL WHILE (くわえる) you wait, ADD nuts to your MOUTH one by one, slowly chew them, then ADD another.

You’re so COOL WHILE (くわえる) you wait.

20

倒産(とうさん)Bankruptcy

The bad news is you went BANKRUPT, but the good news is your a new FATHER (とうさん).

You’re not おとうさん though because the bank took away all your おs in the bankruptcy.

犯人(はんにん)Criminal(s)

In ancient times, you could see CRIMINALS HANGING (はんにん) in the public square. Glad that’s over!

罪(つみ)Crime

The CRIMINAL in the hair NET says “I’ve committed a CRIME? Then SUE ME! (つみ). I don’t feel any GUILT.”

穴場(あなば)Hole in the wall

This PLACE is just ANOTHER (あなば) HOLE IN THE WALL, sung like the old Pink Floyd song… another (あなば) brick in the wall.

絡む(からむ)to be Entangled

A thread BECAME ENTANGLED during a kiss. The good news is you ate CARAMEL (からむ) before kissing, so at least your partner has a nice flavor in their mouth while waiting to get help. Unless they hate CARAMEL (からむ), in which case this is probably your last kiss.