One year of Durtling! - Obligatory Post

I realized this morning looking at my heatmap that I’ve joined WaniKani exactly one year ago! So, of course, I had to make a post to show how happy I am about it!!! :durtle:

(Of course, I had to include a .gif, otherwise it wouldn’t be me lol)

So first I take the opportunity of this post to thank all the WaniKani Users (sometimes unbeknownst to them) that have been helping me through this journey, for far.

Now what can I say about my one-year experience at WaniKani?

  • Is it a good Kanji learning tool for me?
    => Yes! (I just bought the lifetime subscription, duh…).

  • Am I learning as fast as I wish I did?
    => Nope. I’m level 19 right now (no reset yet). My goal was to be around 36 by that time. So I’m way behind schedule. One of the reasons is that I’ve been adding KaniWani along the way ( Which I recommend to by the way. I also bought one of those new fancy brush-pen with cartridge and been practicing my Kanji writing. I’m proud of my progresses on that front (though I’m sure my calligraphy is closer to the elementary school kid’s handwriting that to the Shodou Master’s XD).

  • Am I frustrated by my slow pace?
    => Not going to lie: I was at first. Until I reorganized my leaderboard to sort people by % of burnt kanji… And realized something: I was learning slower but at a steadier pace and more durably. An Italian Idiom I know: “Che va piano va sano e lontano” (the one that goes slow goes safely and far) comes to mind. I keep my leeches under ten and they usually affect Apprentice or Guru Kanji, Radicals or Vocab but rarely go higher than that.

  • Userscripts: yes or no?
    => Yes, for everything that can help you get things neater and organized: the heatmap, the leaderboard, the leech trainer… Stay away from the override ones: It’s like a cat belly: it’s a TRAP!!!
    On the other hand, never underestimate the cheering power of the celebratory scripts like the famous ‘levelup celebrator’ and the likes. Everybody needs an extra pat on the back when they’ve done some good work.

  • What I should improve about the way I use WaniKani?
    => Remember to activate the d**n vacation mode so that my average time for levelling up doesn’t take a nose dive everytime. XD
    => Stop falling for the 'yes, it’s late and I’m tired but it’s just a few reviews, it’ll be ok…". It doesn’t matter how many reviews. The level of concentration and focus needed is the same. Whenever I get leeches, that’s why.

  • Some of the big questions I still have to work on:
    => Why are there so many ways to say to mix, interferences and the likes? And how will I ever be sure I use the right one in the right context?
    => -aru vs -eru, -asu vs -esu: I have some elements of answer but I’m still in the process of wrapping my mind around that one (transitivity - とまる / とめる and such pairs of verbs - Japanese Language Stack Exchange).

That’s all for me for today but if you have questions for me, answers for me :smiley_cat: or just personal experience to share, feel free :white_flower:


You are doing great! I started in 2013, got to level 6, stopped for a couple eternities, did a reset last year and started again! So no matter how fast or slow you go, you’ll always have like 6 years on me :sweat_smile:. That’s a small child; a small child that would speak more Japanese than me if he was born and raised there.

PS: Add me to your leaderboard!


Thanks! I guess I meant way behind the schedule I set for myself. But yeah, ‘fast’/‘slow’ is rather subjective, isn’t it?

Good job for hanging in there, though! :+1:

You and me both lol But I’ve read a few 6-year-old kid stories in Japanese. Does that count?

PS: Added!


That is one hekk of a leaderboard


Hahaha I know right? It got a little out of hand over the months :rofl:

I like the fact that I only saw a few people disappearing. Most of them are holding strong. So the leaderboard keeps getting bigger… and bigger… and bigger!


Totally unrelated, but my walls are purple


Are they purple and blue? Or of a shade of purple that’s close to blue? Because then, it’d be totally related :wink:


Sadly not, they’re on the red side of purple. And my other walls are green


@Kumirei Sounds very pretty actually.

A few images come to mind. This one first:

And some DC Characters :wink:
((You can see why mnemonics work well with me, my mind wanders a lot XD))

@Oshin You’re very welcome :smiley_cat:


I was wondering how come I was so far up on your leaderboard. I’m a fellow going slower person. I’ve only been on WK about 3.5 months longer than you. (Joined late October 2018.) And level 19 was more than two months long.

But hanging in there and bit by bit getting further.

How come this gif comes up for school rumble happy gif? … :rofl:


I don’t know but it’s a very cute .gif :slight_smile:

Because it seems you’ve burnt more items (21.89%) than me (20.32%) and anyone at the painful levels on my board! Congrats!!! You’re just that good. :wink:

Also I admit my way of sorting people on my leaderboard favors people who are slow but steady about learning (I have to cheer myself up somehow). So it works well for you too!

Be aware that I’ve been particularly slow over Dec-Jan because of work and family reunions, so don’t feel safe up there… I might catch up with you anytime! :smiley_cat:


Happy early cake day! Be sure to take a screenshot when you get the emoji next to your username for the cold, cake-less nights ahead of you.


What I do when I’m confused about how to differentiate between different words that have a similar meaning, I first look at the example sentences and see how they’re used in context. If it’s still unclear, or if it’s not on WaniKani, googling “word1 word2 ちがい” usually provides some understanding. Japanese StackExchange forums are also a pretty good resource to look through.


@raephe : Oh? Do I know have it yet because it’s the day I first posted on the forum that counts? And not the day on which I created my WK account? (…If so, I have to wait until the 21st).

@jneapan : I didn’t know about this forum ( ). Thank you so much for sharing! It looks quite big. But I like the fact that they seem to let you ask questions as ‘guest’. Too many accounts to manage is a headache waiting to happen… :sweat:


Maybe something is up if we are in different timezones, but I see your start date as February 5th, 2019. So, it should be tomorrow?

Your forum account starts the day you first log onto the forums (open the main page), not your first post!

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You do?

That’s what my profile says. But you’re right, it could be timezones Somehow it’s always timezones or daylight saving.

Maybe tomorrow, then.

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Forum start date is(can be) different from your real start date as its set when you open the forum for the first time


This means I get a two-day anniversary, so to speak. Or two anniversaries back to back (real start date anniversary - forum anniversary). I like that! :smiley_cat:


But so soon I will enter into Death (today or tomorrow in fact!), and then I won’t be the top contender in my level category anymore (on your leaderboard). Awwww…

And yeah, December was super slow for me too, as was November, hence a very, very, very long level 19.

I will remember to look over my shoulder regularly for you! Maybe all that looking will make me stumble and you’ll zoom right past me! :wink:

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I can see my house name from here!
And, yes, to echo what was said (including by yourself), better be slow and steady than rushing, crashing and burning (out; burning turtles is okay).
In the context of WK at least.