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Why did you start learning Japanese?

Learn more about the community and how they are learning Japanese and about Japan. Do a little listener-to-listener chit chat. Keep it civil, and everything else goes.

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esp
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Joined: April 24th, 2006 12:28 pm
Location: UK, at the moment

Why did you start learning Japanese?

Postby esp » April 27th, 2006 7:58 am

Well i've for years been really interested in japanese culture mainly samurai, ninja and japanese martial arts.
I also really like japanese cinema I basically started out with horror films and then just kept watching more and more, at the moment i'm building up a small collection of kurosawa films although I don't really have time to watch them at the moment.
I like Japanese video games a lot too especially the Metal Gear and Final Fantasy series'.
I've also been really interested in old japanese architecture and so I find Japan to be a really beautiful country and I hope to visit there someday and I always like to be able to speak at least some of the native language of whichever country I travel to.

metablue
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Postby metablue » April 27th, 2006 1:33 pm

I've been playing Final Fantasy XI for about 2 years. Many other players are Japanese. A few months ago I was party leader and trying to communicate with the 4 Japanese speakers in the group with the preselected translator phrases.

<fisherman> <who?> = who is going to bring the monsters back so we can kill them?
<bio> <break> = I need to use the bathroom
<cure> <can I have it?> = I'm about to die, please heal me
w = that's funny

It was really stressful. The game was released in Japan a year or so before the US, and your average Japanese player is generally considered to be better than your average US player. We often have completely different playing styles. The US players will throw a team together as quickly as possible and rush out chaotically to play, while the JP players will take hours to assemble the perfect team that is amazing to play in. US players aren't usually invited into JP teams.

This group was talking together and laughing and I had no idea what they were saying and suddenly it really annoyed me that I didn't understand, so I decided to learn Japanese.

Laura
Last edited by metablue on April 27th, 2006 10:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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shijin
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Postby shijin » April 27th, 2006 10:36 pm

yeah, that's the one question isn't it.
I basically always wanted to learn a language that differs from Latin script and especially one that's Non-European. I finally decided on Arabic and already wanted to start, when I went to Hawai'i for 3 months. There I met many Japanese and they were all so funny and cool and we had the time of our lives. And what really struck me is how little I knew about Japan and its people. Close to nothing actually and they showed me there food told me how they lived and it was all fascinating.
Finally I came back and started to learn Japanese instead of Arabic.
And this summer I'm going to Tokyo for 9 weeks and I'll be able to meet all my friends again and this time we're going to be taking Japanese :)

Brugg
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Postby Brugg » April 27th, 2006 11:59 pm

My first encounter with the language was probably when i studied karate, some years back. We did "classical" shotokan, and so, as i am realising more and more now, relatively much of the japanese was left, not just language-wise, but in the entire atmosphere. There's just something that appeals to me about japanese culture, and this also goes for the language. It's hard to describe, but i guess the forumites here will understand instantly anyways. When i decided i wanted to learn japanese, it was probably as much to be able to think in japanese as to speak it. Anyways, a few years after the karate, there was sort of a japanese boom around here (think music, anime and manga), and i remembered once again that there was such a fascinating language. So eventually i decided to look on the internet and learn some. I soon bacame hooked on the language itself. I ordered textbooks, and one day i discovered jpod. I still haven't set aside enough time to study very seriously, but i do a little whenever i have some free time. It's become sort of a hobby/recreational-thing. I realize that I have to learn it properly some day, because i like it so much, but I'm in no hurry yet.

The Frankensteiner
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Postby The Frankensteiner » April 28th, 2006 2:12 am

Brugg, you've got like the same story as me. Freaky... :shock:

I'm also in Shotokan. When I was 11 (Am 24 now) I had a chance to go to Japan to compete in a world tournament. I had no interest at that young age and truthfully I was a little intimidated to travel to a different country. Now though, I kick myself for it every day. I really should have gone.

Any ways, apart from the karate I started watching a lot of anime and more recently J-Horror flicks / Samurai films. Every time I watched something I would learn a new interesting fact about the country and it's culture. Pretty soon I was entranced. Japan just seems like this mystical far away land to me and I've made it my mission to make it there someday.

As for the language, I learned quite a bit just from watching movies actually and I thought "Hey why not just go the whole way?" If I'm going to get there someday I'll want to be able to communicate.

P.S. Actually another thing I learned simply from watching Japanese film is how to use chopsticks. The first time I picked them up I could already use them, no one showed me how and I figure it must be from watching so many films.
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helen
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Postby helen » April 28th, 2006 10:53 am

I would really like to visit Japan or live there, and I always liked Japanese art and films and stuff and thought it would be a fun language to learn. At university quite a few of my friends take Japanese so I learned bits from them and then got textbooks and CDs so I could learn more.

Christeos_Pir
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Postby Christeos_Pir » April 28th, 2006 11:01 am

I was there when I was a kid, and it made a real impression on me, much more than I realized. I've been exposed to the language and culture (both historical and contemporary) for many years now, but never seriously studied it. Now that I'm returning to college to complete my degree, I'll be able to study it in a structured way, and JPod is my secret weapon. Heck, I might even place out of the 101 class because of you! :)

Brugg
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Postby Brugg » April 29th, 2006 12:55 am

The Frankensteiner wrote:Brugg, you've got like the same story as me. Freaky...

Hehe.. My discovery of guzen radio, some months ago, is actually a part of the story too.

The Frankensteiner
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Postby The Frankensteiner » April 29th, 2006 1:04 am

Brugg wrote:
The Frankensteiner wrote:Brugg, you've got like the same story as me. Freaky...

Hehe.. My discovery of guzen radio, some months ago, is actually a part of the story too.


GASP!
Get outta my head!
:lol:

Tarabasu
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Postby Tarabasu » April 30th, 2006 1:51 pm

...well I my story is actually kind of funny. I started liking Japan because i had a crush on a girl who was into japan (shes american). So i got into it (for some reason) and it turned out about 6 months in to getting into Japan. I started caring less about her and more about Japan and everything else Japanese. Soon I forgot about her. I am learning the language and loving to speak it with people. collecting Japanese toys,games,video games,etc. ...and now I only date Japanese girls. lol!

Ersby
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Postby Ersby » April 30th, 2006 4:16 pm

shijin wrote:I basically always wanted to learn a language that differs from Latin script and especially one that's Non-European.

Same here. I wanted to learn a langage that was nothing like English. Looking at some languages, they seem so impenetrable that I wanted to know how they worked. I chose Japanese because I like Japanese music and I wanted to know what they were singing about.

tintinium
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Postby tintinium » May 3rd, 2006 6:43 am

I didn't choose Japanese, Japanese chose me. and I'll be marrying her in a month.

Brian
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すごい引用句

Postby Brian » May 3rd, 2006 12:06 pm

tintinium wrote:I didn't choose Japanese, Japanese chose me. and I'll be marrying her in a month.

なんて幸運なんだ、おめでとうございますっ
こちらこそ、日本語は美しいですけども日本人もちょう美しいですね。(...笑)

頑張って

Liz21
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Postby Liz21 » May 4th, 2006 3:39 am

I was an exchange student to Japan with the AFS program. I lived with a family there for one summer and traveled around Japan a little, too. Then I got busy with my career and family. In 2004, I returned to Japan and fell in love with the culture all over again! I am planning another trip in 2007 so I have to hurry up and learn how to speak Japanese!! I don't actually need to know it because I am always with AFS friends and/or host family, but I want to!!

tintinium
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Re: すごい引用句

Postby tintinium » May 4th, 2006 4:19 am

Brian wrote:
tintinium wrote:I didn't choose Japanese, Japanese chose me. and I'll be marrying her in a month.

なんて幸運なんだ、おめでとうございますっ
こちらこそ、日本語は美しいですけども日本人もちょう美しいですね。(...笑)

頑張って


そうですね。特に僕の婚約者です。「もちろん」と思わなければなりませんね(笑)。 

今日本語が好きだけど前は中国を学びたかった。バンクーバーに住んでいますから。バンクーバーは中国人が一杯います。多分人々の中でアジア人が65%です。すごいですね。


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