Dialogue

Vocabulary

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Lesson Notes

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Lesson Transcript

Intro

Jessi:
Hi everyone! Welcome to Absolute Beginner Season 1, Lesson 4 - Being Sorry in Japan. Hello and welcome to JapanesePod101.com, the fastest, easiest, and most fun way to learn Japanese.
Naomi:
And thanks again for being here with us for this Absolute Beginner Lesson.
Jessi:
Jessiです。Jessi here.
Naomi:
こんにちは!なおみです。Naomi here!
Jessi:
In the last lesson, we learned how to say thank you, and you're welcome!
Naomi:
ありがとうございます!
Jessi:
Which is "thank you" and...
Naomi:
どういたしまして
Jessi:
Which is "you're welcome".
Naomi:
So Jessi?
Jessi:
Yes.
Naomi:
What are we going to learn in this lesson?
Jessi:
In this lesson, you'll learn how to say "I'm sorry" in Japanese.
Naomi:
You never know when you might need this phrase.
Jessi:
That's true. You never know when you might run into someone, spill something, break something, forget about something. Well, we could go on. But it's good to know what to say in that kind of situation!
Naomi:
You might feel more at ease!
Jessi:
Okay. Let's begin.

Lesson conversation

(crowd of people)
A:
イタタタ
あの…すみません。
B:
はい?
A:
あし…。
B:
あ、すみません!
English Host:
Let’s listen to the conversation again slowly.
A:
イタタタ
あの…すみません。
B:
はい?
A:
あし…。
B:
あ、すみません!
English Host:
Now let’s listen to it with the translation.
(crowd of people)
A:
イタタタ
Jessi:
Ouch!
A:
あの…すみません。
Jessi:
Umm...excuse me.
B:
はい?
Jessi:
Yes?
A:
あし…。
Jessi:
My foot...
B:
あ、すみません!
Jessi:
Oh, I'm sorry!
KEY VOCABULARY AND PHRASES
Jessi:
Okay. So what happened here? It sounds like someone got their foot stepped on!
Naomi:
Yes, poor guy. He said イタタタ!
Jessi:
Which is like "ow ow ow"!
Naomi:
Right. If someone is in pain, they might say いたい! or this variation, いたたた~
Jessi:
If you are Japan long enough, or if you hang around Japanese people long enough, you might start to say this yourself actually.
Naomi:
Right. And there are more variations. Like...いたっ!or イタタ!
Jessi:
I've also heard いてっ.
Naomi:
That's the common one too.
Jessi:
All right. So as the conversations get longer, we're going to hear more and more new words. So here, we're going to introduce some of the new words to you. We already went over one, let's go over some more. The next one is...?
Naomi:
あの...
Jessi:
Which is used to get someone's attention, and means "umm" or "uhh"...
Naomi:
In the dialogue, the man used あの... to get the attention of the woman.
Jessi:
Right. The woman didn't realize she was stepping on the man's foot.
Naomi:
It's a good way to lead in to what you're going to say.
Jessi:
Yeah, to kind of get someone's attention. If you just suddenly start talking, it might take the other person off guard, so this is good way to let them know you're about to say something. And the next word is...
Naomi:
はい?
Jessi:
This is the word はい said with rising intonation. はい is a super common word in Japanese..
Naomi:
It's often translated as "yes".
Jessi:
And in a lot of situations, it's used to mean "yes", but a lot of the time people use it just to let the other person know they are listening.
Naomi:
Like はい、はい、はい
Jessi:
So if you are saying something to someone in Japanese, and they go..
Naomi:
はい、はい。。
Jessi:
It just means they're listening to you and following along with what you're saying. That's all.
Naomi:
That's right. If you say it with rising intonation, though, it becomes a question.
Jessi:
So はい? would mean "yes?" or "I'm sorry?"
Naomi:
If someone doesn't understand you, they might say はい?
Jessi:
In the conversation, the man said "Excuse me..." and the women went はい?
Naomi:
Like "Yes? What is it?"
Jessi:
Okay, let's move onto the lesson focus.

Lesson focus

Jessi:
Okay, in this lesson, you'll learn how to say "Excuse me" and "I'm sorry". You never know when you might have to excuse yourself or apologize for something, right?
Naomi:
Right. The best part is you only have to learn one phrase for both.
Jessi:
One phrase for both! That's right. There is one phrase that covers both of these meanings. That makes it easy! And that word is, Naomi...?
Naomi:
すみません
Jessi:
すみません. One time slowly?
Naomi:
(Slowly) すみません
Jessi:
And one more time regular speed.
Naomi:
すみません
Jessi:
So this すみません has TWO meanings - "Excuse me" AND "I'm sorry".
Naomi:
We heard both meanings in the conversation.
Jessi:
So the first meaning of すみません, "Excuse me", is used to get the attention of somebody, so that means you can use it to call out to a stranger or a waiter at a restaurant, things like that.
Naomi:
The woman was stepping on the man's foot, so the man said あの...すみません...
Jessi:
"Umm, excuse me..." like that.
Naomi:
So that's the first meaning of すみません。
Jessi:
The second meaning, again, is "I'm sorry".
Naomi:
The woman realized that she was stepping on the man's foot, so she said あ!すみません!
Jessi:
"Oh! I'm sorry!" This is really useful. If you make some kind of mistake, bump into someone, step on someone's foot like in the dialogue, it can all be handled with すみません。
Naomi:
Please remember this phrase!
Jessi:
Okay, let's try saying it with both meanings. The first one, Naomi? With the meaning of "Umm, excuse me?"
Naomi:
あの…すみません。
Jessi:
あの…すみません。 Repeat after Naomi.
Naomi:
あの…すみません。
[Pause]
Jessi:
Great, and now the second meaning - "I'm sorry"
Naomi:
すみません。
Jessi:
すみません。 Repeat after Naomi.
Naomi:
すみません。
[Pause]
Jessi:
Great, sounding good! Okay, now let's try it in a situation! Hmm, what's a good one. Let's say you're making your way around a store and Naomi is blocking your way. You can't get past her. What would you say to get her attention? Here we go.
Naomi:
♪ ~(鼻歌)
[Pause] あの…すみません]
Naomi:
Sorry for being in the way.
Jessi:
Very nice! I think we can function in a lot of situations with this word.
Naomi:
Me too! It helps to keep this word in the front of your brain.

Outro

Jessi:
All right. Well, that's going to wrap up this lesson! Remember, for more details on anything we cover in this lesson, please check out the lesson notes PDF.
Naomi:
We can't cover everything there, so we put extra information in the PDF.
Jessi:
You can read it as you listen, as a lot of listeners do, or read it afterward as a review! Either way, go to JapanesePod101.com to download the lesson notes for this lesson now. Okay, make sure to join us for the next lesson where you'll learn how to ask for something in Japanese.
Naomi:
See you then! Thanks for listening everyone.
Jessi:
Until next time.

671 Comments

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JapanesePod101.com
Monday at 6:30 pm
Pinned Comment
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Welcome to our fourth lesson! How are your Japanese studies going so far? :D

March 15th, 2017 at 7:09 pm
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Joanna さん、
こんにちは。

If you have a free lifetime account, you can access the first 3 lessons of each series.

For accessing further lesson in the same series, it’s necessary to choose a plan:
https://www.japanesepod101.com/member/member_upnewapi.php

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Joanna
March 15th, 2017 at 6:00 pm
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Hello!

Can I download all 25 Lessons of this Absolute beginner course for free? :smile:

February 27th, 2017 at 1:41 pm
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Hi Frida,

Probably your 7-Day Premium trial has expired.
We also offer a lot of materials for free.
Please check this link for more information: https://www.japanesepod101.com/helpcenter/billingsubscription/subscription

Feel free to let us know if you have more questions.
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Frida
February 27th, 2017 at 5:53 am
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why i cant listen other lesions? :flushed:

February 23rd, 2017 at 7:02 pm
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Hi Katerina,

Thank you for studying with us. :heart:
I am glad to hear that you found our lessons fun. I hope you like the rest of our series.

Feel free to let us know if you have any questions.

Keep up the good work!

Cheers,
Lena
Team JapanesePod101.com

Katerina
February 23rd, 2017 at 6:30 pm
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I just got to the half of the Newbie Lessons season 1 but then I found the Absolute Beginners series. And it’s really useful for training all if your knowledge. I study 3 lessons a day. I’m really enjoying that. Thought I’m only 11 years old and I really do enjoy it. And by the way it’s 666th comment here.

February 22nd, 2017 at 1:27 pm
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Hi Makenzie,
Thank you for posting :smile:

I feel “gomen(nasai)” is stronger than “sumimasen”.
It could be translated “My apologies”.

Keep studying with JapanesePod101.com
Cheers,
Miki(美希)
Team JapanesePod101.com

February 22nd, 2017 at 1:18 pm
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Konnichiwa Ahmad san!

Some people speak their dialects, so those might sounds thick accent to you.
Or they just try to speak clearly in order to make you understand easily :smile:

Keep studying with JapanesePod101.com
Cheers,
Miki(美希)
Team JapanesePod101.com

February 21st, 2017 at 12:29 pm
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Hi Jessica,

Thank you for studying with us.
That’s very interesting, thank you for sharing it with us! :heart:

Feel free to let us know if you have any questions.
Cheers,
Lena
Team JapanesePod101.com

Jessica
February 21st, 2017 at 12:22 pm
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Sumimasen is just like entschuldigung from german which means excuse me or sorry. :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye: