(The increasingly less) Daily senryu thread

I think a good argument for that could be that the 5-7-5 format splits 粗大 and ゴミ so it may not be a reference to the colloquial meaning. But オレ and おまえ are what lead me to believe that it’s supposed to sound rough.

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おれそだいごみならおまえきけんぶつ
If I be our home’s / couch to be trashed, you / dear, are toxic waste!

Obviously, the pun on trash is lost in my translation. Then again, if one doesn’t know about the trash handling culture in Japan, there is no way to get it across in a poem, methinks.

Your translation captures the spirit of it well indeed…

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It just seems odd to me for senryu to have a mean/vicious rather than joking tone.

I think the choice of words is more familiar than rough. It’s common for comedians to use the ore/omae forms (Downtown, for example).

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Yeah, sorry, that’s what I meant by rough. Like, Way of the House Husband where there’s an inversion on the trope. I suppose that’s part of the problem with English translations: you’re almost always going to over- or under-shoot the tone.

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Wednesday, May 11, 2022


Previous senryu

  1. オレ粗大ゴミならおまえ危険物
    オレそだい・ゴミならおまえ・きけんぶつ
    If I belong in “oversized trash” / you must be “dangerous goods”!

Notes:

  • Congrats to @JazzFuneral :confetti_ball: for realizing that 粗大ゴミ here uses the colloquial meaning of a retired husband who’s become a nuisance around the house (a big lunk always getting in the way).

  • I’m going with my own translation this time, though (boooooo!). I was tempted, though, by what @LaVieQ eventually came up with.

  • I’m uncomfortable thinking of it as nasty words exchanged during an argument. Instead, I like to imagine a husband making a joke near the marked off areas for the various types of trash.

Current senryu challenge

Volume: Intense

208 勤務先電話をすれば夫休み

No hints today, a dictionary should suffice. At least I think I know what’s going on.

Remember to please use the spoiler tag with your translation attempts! Also, please include the reading in kana with your submission.


Everyone is encouraged to participate, no matter your level!

Online tools like dictionaries, sentence databases, and even AI translation engines are fair game and can be extremely helpful. Yomichan is particularly handy if you use the Chrome or Firefox browser.

Here are the links to the 356 Japanese originals (spoiler free) and to the the spreadsheet with all the upcoming senryu as well as the translations to date.

208 勤務先電話をすれば夫休み

きんむさきでんわをすればおっとやすみ

Okay, it took me a minute to figure out a non-negative interpretation for this, but here’s how I see it:

If I call in to
His place of business, it is
Break time for hubby

Or, more loosely but a bit more cute:

Sometimes I call in
To my husband’s work, just so
He can take a break

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Note that this one is in the “intense” category.

My interpretation:

“If I call him at work, they tell me he’s on vacation”

It still seems somewhat joking to me, like you’ve caught your spouse playing hookey or they asked someone to “tell her I’m not here”.

I think they would use 休憩中 or 昼休み or something if it was just a break. 休み can mean lots of things, of course, but bareword like this I think implies they are on holiday.

I suppose it could also be interpreted as the only time she calls in to his office is when he’s not at work (because she doesn’t want to talk to him for some reason) but that doesn’t seem to make as much sense to me.

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Ah okay, I did notice the “intense” category, and my initial interpretation was something like that, but then I thought, why would they tell his own wife that he’s on vacation/absent when she would almost certainly know better? Or, “tell her I’m not here” would seem to cause more problems than it solves?

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Few of my coworkers knew my wife’s voice, fwiw. :slight_smile:

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Thursday, May 12, 2022

Late this morning. Mea culpa!


Previous senryu

勤務先電話をすれば夫休み
きんむさき・でんわをすれば・おっとやすみ
If I call my husband’s office / they tell me he’s on vacation

Notes:

  • Went with my own interpretation again since there didn’t seem much disagreement
  • The implication seems to be that either he asked someone (who didn’t realize it was his wife) to “tell her I’m not here” or that she caught him playing hookey.
  • Consolation/participation :trophy: to @JazzFuneral

Current senryu challenge

Volume: Heartfelt

  1. 家中でだまされてやる父の嘘

No hints because I find this one pretty difficult. I’m looking forward to hearing your thoughts.

Remember to please use the spoiler tag with your translation attempts! Also, please include the reading in kana with your submission.


Everyone is encouraged to participate, no matter your level!

Online tools like dictionaries, sentence databases, and even AI translation engines are fair game and can be extremely helpful. Yomichan is particularly handy if you use the Chrome or Firefox browser.

Here are the links to the 356 Japanese originals (spoiler free) and to the the spreadsheet with all the upcoming senryu as well as the translations to date.

Translation Attempt

  1. 家中でだまされてやる父の嘘

うちじゅうで・だまされてやる・ちちのうそ

With a very liberal dash of artistic license:

The evidence of my fathers lies for the sake of soothing me are all over the house.

This one is really hard to explain without using a whole paragraph.

Translation Notes

家中 I’m taking the second meaning of “all around the house” rather than “the whole family” because I think that fits better with で.

だます I’m going with the second definition of “to soothe, to humor” but it’s in the passive form, and てやる is basically てあげる, “do a favor”. So, “was soothed (for me/someone by someone, as a favor).”

Passive is hard. :joy: My main example for trying to get the tone was 乗らせてやる (let me/you/someone ride).

Ultimately, I think this is more a poignant sentence rather than an accusative one.

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Maybe “us” rather than “me”?

Your interpretation jibes with the feeling I got, but I struggle to understand what sort of lies are involved here.

Yeah, I like that better. Honestly, I was waffling back and forth on the agent.

I was thinking things like unpaid bills or evidence that the family is struggling even though the dad presents a facade that everything is ok.

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Labored 5-7-5 construct:
うちじゅうでだまされてやるちちのうそ
Our entire household / taken in entirely by / father’s lies and fibs

Straightforward translation that perhaps preserves better the “Heartfelt” pathos of the original:
The entire family / was deceived by them: / Dad’s lies

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Translation Attempt

  1. 家中でだまされてやる父の嘘

やる and 自分 are the thing that constantly confuse me, can change direction widely depending on the context…

Another very non-literal interpretation:

The entire family played nice
Pretending to be fooled
By dad’s fibs

The big choice is assuming that てやる means てあげる, so it would be the family doing the favor of being だまされる for the sake of the dad. Playful/lighthearted vibe. But if it’s true I’m not sure why 家中で instead of 家中が though. :thinking:

Also I assumed that the viewpoint is from inside the family, because if it was an objective external viewpoint, it would be あげる maybe ? Thus “dad’s fibs” and not “the father’s fibs”. But again my understanding of やる is low…

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My daughter points out:

The main thing is だまされて「やる」instead of だまされる

They’re purposefully falling for his lies

What’s the secret to telling a good jo…TIMING!

@Arzar33 has it right!

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Yay ! The coinflip やる landed on the right side for me this time !

I also just noticed that だまされてやる is present tense, but my translation make it look like it’s a one time thing that happened in the past, so it’s probably not right either.

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Wife points out that these are mostly サラリーマン川柳, so important to recognize working for a large company, workaholic, long commute, complex and hierarchical work place relationships etc.:grin:

[spoiler]So I imagine they are going along with some fib (like giving up cigarettes or drinking) to avoid causing any more stress.

But my wife says it could be about a golf score or anything — they just pretend to believe him.[/spoiler]

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That actually helps a lot for pruning the meaning and going for the right stereotype :stuck_out_tongue:
Still wondering what kind of nuance 家中 brings.

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