Cool-headed, hot-footed

The winter is upon us! Here’s a helpful tip for weathering it.

頭寒足熱

zu.kan.soku.netsu

Literally: head – cold – leg/foot – heat

Alternately: Keeping your head cool and your feet warm; a recommended palliative when you have a cold, or general advice for body-temperature regulation in the winter.

Notes: Cooling the head, by itself, is a metaphor for remaining calm in Japanese just as in English. This yojijukugo as a whole doesn’t seem to have any such metaphorical use, though. That said, it’s not bad advice overall: a certain amount of exposure to cool air encourages the body to develop or retain “brown fat,” which has been shown to play a role in regulating metabolism. At the same hand, a single experience is enough to impress on you that it’s near-impossible to sleep when your feet are cold.

Hot water bottles! How quaint!

Totally cribbed from this now-defunct Russian Japanese-study blog. I have no idea where they got it. A Japanese blog, perhaps.

About Confanity

I love the written word more than anything else I've had the chance to work with. I'm back in the States from Japan for grad school, but still studying Japanese with the hope of becoming a translator -- or writer, or even teacher -- as long as it's something language-related.
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