What's the strangest context you've learned a kanji/vocab from?

Let’s face it, many of us have been absorbing Japanese media way longer than we’ve been studying the language. Even if that’s not the case, we take a lot of loan words for granted (futon, sushi, etc)

Recently I’ve been unlocking a lot of train based vocab and knowing a lot of it without even breaking a sweat. And it’s all thanks to our favorite train based spandexed heroes, Ressha Sentai Toqger.

From the catchphrase “出発、進行!” down to the name of the series itself being derived from 烈車 and 特急 (basically “Train Squad Limited Express Ranger” these train-based vocabs have been a piece of cake for me. I haven’t even watched Toqger since it came out!

All this just to pose the question: What’s the least likely place you’ve absorbed the language without really realizing it?


Is… is learning train-themed vocabulary from watching train-themed Japanese media really a “strange context”? :stuck_out_tongue:


Watching corn. Japanese corn taught me a lot of onomatopoeia and other vocab that I probably wouldn’t have learned from watching other vegetables.


I used to work at the Sapporo Dome when I was in Japan on a student visa. This stadium, at the time, hosted both professional baseball and soccer. When the stadium was changing between the fields, we’d call it 場面転換 (ばめんてんかん、scene change). At some moment, I asked colleagues who were on a shift with me if there were other words in which 転換 was used. A colleague said 性転換 (せいてんかん、gender change). I never expected to learn that word working at a stadium.