Teasing Master Takagi-san 😝 ・ Volume 1, chapter 3

Chapter 3 discussion thread

Main info

|Week 3|15 May 2021|
|Chapter|3: 変顔|
|Volume pages|36-50|
|Last week|Click!|
|Next week|Click!|
|Home thread|Click!|


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

Anki deck
Kitsune deck

Discussion guidelines

  • Please don’t hesitate to ask questions, even if you think it’s a silly question. Helping each other learn is what book clubs are all about! :slight_smile:
  • When asking for help, please include the ‘chapter page number’. This makes it easier for others to help you and it makes the information in this thread more searchable. The ‘chapter page numbers’ are the ones in between the panels on every page, not the ones that occasionally appear at the bottom of the page (those would be the volume page numbers).
  • Please blur out major events in the current week’s pages and any content from later in the book/series by using spoiler tags: [spoiler]text here[/spoiler].


How is the reading going?
  • I am reading along this week
  • I will catch up later
  • I won’t be reading (anymore)

0 voters


I’ve yet to start chapter 2 but I will be catching up and participating! Thank you to everyone who is helping keep this up and explaining stuff to us newbies!


Decided this week that I’m going to forgo going line by line and just try to ask for the bits that are giving me real trouble now.
Got up to page 6 of the chapter just now, still fairly slow reading thanks to liberal dictionary checking and puzzling out meaning, but it’s a big step up from how long it would take previously. Love to see Nishikata getting proactive here
Still, there is one thing that left me puzzled on page 5, so some help would be appreciated:

Chapter page 5

Was having some trouble interpreting this
From what I read とする seems to mean “to try” since ごまかす is in the volitional form
I also did some reading on the meanings of ごまかす and it seems like it can also be used to mean something along the lines of dodging a question (unless I’m wrong here, might be worth updating the vocab sheet?)
って modifies the こと with the preceding part
So the first part would be something along the lines of “regarding the matter (こと) of trying to dodge the question” I think?
Then the second part seems to be him building up to asking again in the next panel, but I’m not quite sure how to interpret it (especially with regards to the topic)? If someone could help break it down that would be useful


I agree with the first part of your breakdown, and do think ごまかす is being used here in the sense of dodging a question, or glossing over the subject. The 「。。。ことはそうなんだな」is a little trickier to interpret. I’m pretty sure the そう is referring to what Nakai said previously — that Nishikata maybe likes Takagi.

So what Nakai is saying here is “the thing that you’re trying to gloss over is that” (that being liking Takagi) (edited to flow better in English).

Funny though that Nishikata has stopped paying attention to Nakai completely at this point.


I only got halfway through chapter 2 when my house flooded. :frowning_face: Everything is alright, it’s just been a lot of work dealing with it. My life is almost back to normal after a hectic week of cleanup.

Anyways, I’m determined to keep reading. I think I’ll start chapter 3 now and come back to chapter 2 when I have time (I already watched the anime anyways).


if you need some cheering up and this book doesn’t do it… I recommend Yotsuba Ch 9 :wink:


Toughest week for me so far! Was hard to find the time to read as I am starting a new job next week but I will persevere.

Lots that I did not follow along with this week, so this was a slower and more uncomfortable read. Trying not to get disheartened though. I made it!


Eep! Chapter 3 already?! I read halfway into Chap 2 ahead of time and “got too cocky”, I guess… Now “life intervened” (parental crisis, involving much time, still ongoing)…

When this happened during Harry Potter, I enjoyed MsBrown’s approach most… I joined back in with whatever chapter the group was on. I think it will be fine particularly with this manga, where each Chapter stands alone pretty well.

It made me feel more sane and competent to be “keeping up”, even though “someday” I will want to go back and see what I’d missed. (when I had been keeping up, I’d forgotten the stuff, anyway). Within my headspace, any small feelings of sanity or competence is gratefully received, like water in a desert.


Still making progress just got to page 11 - there was a line that gave me a lot of trouble but I think I’ve got it figured out - if someone wants to take a look and check if I’ve got the meaning/clarify any bits that would be helpful:

Chapter page 7

This was hard to parse, I’m going to try breaking it down
からかおう is the volitional form of からかう ("to tease), and that combines with としている to form “trying to tease” I believe
The object of said attempted teasing is people/a person (left unclear)
Then 時 refers to time, and I’m not super familiar with it as of yet, but it seems to essentially function as a “when”
So this first section would be “When trying to tease people/a person”
自分 = oneself
からかわれる is the passive form of からかう
so 自分がからかわれる would be indicating that oneself is teased/will be teased
なんて I’m not sure with - it could be the particle expressing disdain?
警戒心 = wariness
自分がからかわれるなんて警戒心 = wariness of oneself being teased?
then this second は would probably be contrastive to a degree
薄くなる = to become thin
So putting it all together we’ve got:
When teasing someone, the wariness of themself being teased (on the other hand) becomes thin

Then this is followed by 「そこをたたくっ」 which I think would be something like “there (referring to her defenses being lowered when teasing him) is when I’ll strike”

Besides that I enjoyed the comedy from Takagi completely blanking Nishikata’s face, and then excitedly starting to help him make a better one will be fun to see how that pays off

Edit: Oh actually there’s another bit I’m wondering about

Chapter page 10

With this line I’m not quite certain - と思ったら is “if (subject) thinks/plans” so then the line is “if 何をしようとしているのか is what (subject) thinks… it’s boring”
何をしようとしている is “trying to do (what)” but I think the what here can refer to some vague thing? So that would make it “trying to do that”
Then my trouble is the のか after that, since usually it indicates a question
And I think the subject would be Nishikata, so Takagi would saying something like “if your plan is trying to do that… it’s boring”
But I’m not certain here


I’ll pick up the line-by-line translations, as reading the discussion around them has really helped :grin:

I’m enjoying this manga way more than I expected from the cover. Poor Nishikata just getting wrecked :sweat_smile:

Page 2


I already told you, that’s not the case!

This is a pretty liberal one. 「違う」seems to mean ‘to differ’ so I’m imagining the implication is that ‘it’s different (from what you’re saying)’


I stopped wetting the bed a long time ago!

Another liberal translation. I believe「卒業てる」means ‘graduating’ and it’s colloquially used to imply some time in the distant past. I’m confused by the 「って」 however, is it used as a casual topic marker, as mentioned here?


What about bedwetting, Nishikata?


Uhh, nothing… nevermind…


[Stifled laughter] You are such an idiot


You get so worked up

I don’t entirely understand what’s happening with the second half of this sentence. I can’t figure out what the 「ちゃって」is doing. It seems this is is used to talk about something being completed, but I don’t quite get how that’s applicable

Page 3


Ugh, Takagi


What do I do? How do I beat Takagi?


What should I do?

Another liberal translation. I’m struggling with making it literal, maybe something more like “How do I think of something good (to do?)”


Hey! Nishikata, what are you looking at in the mirror?

Page 4


Are you practicing your sexy face?


Absolutely not


Ahh, then it’s your strange face?


Ohh I see… that’s perfect…


By the way, you and Takagi are really good friends, hunh?

I can’t figure out what this is? Maybe just a general ‘what?’ interjection?


I believe this would be Nishikata thinking to himself “like this?” as he practices making a strange face in the mirror - you can see him doing so in the panel, but it’s not the clearest thing

page 10

I believe 思ったら means here something along the lines of “just when I thought”, so the whole line would end up as “Just when I thought about what you were trying to do… how boring~”

たら can express different things (I believe “when” fits here better). I think this Tofugu article explains it well.


Page 4:


So many particles I don’t understand in this one short sentence! I would love a good breakdown of this. Specifically, I don’t understand the function of:

  • さ in 「ところで」- Is this a sentence ending particle used for emphasis, just at the end of a clause/interjection instead of a whole sentence?
  • って in 「西片って」- I’ve seen this as similar to と in that it quotes something that’s said, but that doesn’t seem to fit here.
  • と in 「高木さん」- The uses I know of for と are quoting and “and”, neither of which seem to fit here.

I managed to look up one thing: the な at the end of the sentence is similar to ね but masculine and used to sound a little offensive.


Like in the sentence before this, って here seems to stand for と言った, so might translate to “I said”.

ちゃった is a contraction of てしまった。This is used often, and implies that an action is done and completed, as you say. There’s also a nuance of unwanted or unexpected results however. Not sure how to accurately translate in English, but I think it implies that he shouldn’t necessarily have been so worked up, it wasn’t a natural consequence, there were many other ways he could react, but he ended up taking it too seriously.

I think さ is for assertiveness as you say. って here is the quoting と and seems to be used in place of は, as in “speaking of”. As for the last と, this is the simple and/with. You are in good terms with Takagi. . Now the な at the end, I thought it was the wondering-aloud-to-myself な, but you r interpretation may be better.


i’ve seen different explanations, it seems it can be similar to よ, but can also be a pretty meaningless particle that you can just throw in the same way you can just throw in a “like” in english, very informal speech. you know, like…kinda like this.


need some help with page 3, how does どうすれば work here?

it’s どう (how; in what way; how about​) and the conditional form of する right?
but im still having trouble with what exactly hes saying here.
which of these would it be: how can i win against tagaki san? in what way can i win against tagaki? in what way should i do, if takagi winning?
i assume it’s the first, but maybe im missing something.

and the next bubble: how can i think of something good? how can i come up with something good?

or is it something entirely else? im unsure how this conditional works. i assume its similar to たら and other stuff like that, but it being used in a question with a question word like that is throwing me off.


The どうすれば construction appears thrice on this page. Here’s how I interpreted them:


We can take this one quite literally: if I do what, I beat Takagi-san. In a more natural way, we can take this to mean: what should I do to beat Takagi-san.

Next he just repeats part of the sentence:


If we take this to mean “if I do what” again, we can get to a more natural translation of “what should I do?”.

Finally, we get the last one on this page:


The combination of conditional + いい is a grammar point, often translated as “should” or “can”. Literally it means “if I do what, it is good”. In English we would say “what should I do” or similar. Note that I already used a similar translation for the earlier conditionals :grin: We then combine this with the と(おも)う. He’s talking to himself in the mirror, and since no explicit subject to this verb is given, we’ll assume his mirror self is the subject. The literal translation of the entire thing would be something like “if I do what, it is good, you think”, but “what do you think I should do?” is the more natural way of saying that in English :grin:

So basically it’s just the same construction used thrice. The conditional form is used here together with a positive outcome (or just the word いい directly) to ask for advice or suggestion. Or at least, that’s how I interpreted it :grin:


thanks a lot! the very literal translations always work best for me, this made it clear for me.


yo! I’m with @rogueknight and @Shannon-8 here (rather behind than with, actually :rofl:), working through all the stuff you guys discussed in detail earlier. halfway chapter 1 that is with me. but it’s super helpful, even for the invisible lurker, so please keep the questions coming :grin:

off topic: did any of you more knowledgeable people ever consider compiling a ‘learning version’ and approaching the/a publisher with it? there’s some language learners’ books out there, so why not make use of all the hard work going into explaining things here? just an idea. it’s still going to be a lot of work.

anyway, happy reading everyone! oh, and @msbrown:flushed: best of luck, I guess?!


Once upon a time, there was a monthly magazine that did just that! It was called Mangajin. It had full comic pages, and after each page was a full-page breakdown of the vocabulary words in each sentence, a literal translation, and natural English translation. Plus, there were bullet points for various bits of grammar and vocabulary usage.

They also had sections where they picked one bit of grammar, and showed single-panel manga examples with the same level of details for the grammar. Some of these were later released in compilations.

The same concept of grammar-specific examples was later used in the publication Japanese the Manga Way, which takes it a step further by arranging the lessons to begin with the most basic stuff first, and uses examples that build on prior lessons.

Of all these, Japanese the Manga Way is the easiest to buy a copy of. I highly recommend it. (Tofugu did a review on it, as well.)

In 2021, I don’t know if something like this could be economically feasible. It’d be difficult to find a market big enough to be worth the large amount of time and effort required to write up the translations and explanations.

Mangajin could find an audience because the Internet as we know it didn’t exist yet when Mangajin started, and was still in its infancy when Mangajin closed shop. At the time, Japanese-learning resources were few and expensive.