Author Archives: Confanity

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.

What part of the law is this possession?

正直の頭に神宿る (Shoujiki no koube ni kami yadoru; “A god dwells in the head of the honest”) Definition: Honesty is the best policy. A benevolent spirit will protect, inspire, even possess those who are honest in their dealings. Note that here … Continue reading

Posted in Japanese, Kotowaza | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The preeminent hobby of the times

Only in small part due to the weather, sadly. 蟄居屏息 chi-.kkyo.hei.soku Literally: “hibernation of insects” – exist; reside – fence – breath Alternately: Staying indoors and keeping quiet. Waiting inside with bated breath. Notes: This was apparently also the name … Continue reading

Posted in Japanese, Yojijukugo | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Keep in mind for next year

Seriously, try to avoid travel during a pandemic, even if it’s for love. 惚れて通えば千里も一理 (Horete kayoeba senri mo ichiri; “If you travel while in love, even a thousand ri feel like one.”) Definition: If you’re traveling to meet with someone … Continue reading

Posted in Japanese, Kotowaza | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

My friend Dan

一致団結 i-.cchi.dan.ketsu Literally: one – do – group – bind / join Alternately: Many people joining and working together for a common cause. Notes: This is a compound of compounds. 一致 is “agreement,” “union,” while 団結 is “grouping together,” “teaming … Continue reading

Posted in Japanese, Yojijukugo | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

It’s a new wind, so blow no ill

明日は明日の風が吹く (Ashita wa ashita no kaze ga fuku; “Tomorrow, tomorrow’s wind will blow.”) Definition: Things might be bad today, but tomorrow could well be better, so don’t let it get you in a funk. Alternately: you don’t know what the … Continue reading

Posted in Japanese, Kotowaza | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Lose yourself in the public flats

公平無私 kou.hei.mu.shi Literally: public – even – no – private Alternately: Impartial; unprejudiced; unswayed by personal interests. Fair. Notes: This comes from our friend the Han shi waizhuan (Japanese 『韓詩外伝』 = Kanshi gaiden). It also has an expanded Japanese-style reading, … Continue reading

Posted in Japanese, Yojijukugo | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Chopped short by the writer’s block

文は遣りたし書く手は持たず(Fumi wa yaritashi kakute wa motazu;“Wanting to send a letter, but lacking the hand to write it”) Definition: This phrase expresses a desire to write a letter to someone (especially a family member, close friend, or lover), accompanied by writer’s … Continue reading

Posted in Japanese, Kotowaza | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Wrack, wrack, wrack your brains

And your body too! Merrily… ? 意匠惨憺 i.shou.san.tan Literally: mind – artisan – harsh – calm Alternately: Doing one’s utmost in an act of creation (especially artistic creation) or design; painstaking attention to detail and agonizing effort for the purpose … Continue reading

Posted in Japanese, Yojijukugo | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The attack of Not A Number

Beware lest your calculations be all messed up 一難去ってまた一難 (Ichinan satte mata ichinan; “One trouble goes; another trouble.”) Definition: No sooner have you escaped one danger or difficulty than the next arises. Out of the frying-pan and into the next … Continue reading

Posted in Japanese, Kotowaza | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Touch and touch and touch and touch and touch and touch and touch and touch and touch and go

九死一生 kyuu.shi.i-.sshou Literally: nine – die – one – live Alternately: To somehow survive a very seriously dangerous situation. To be alive after escaping a 90% chance of dying. Notes: This comes to us from the Chu Ci, aka the … Continue reading

Posted in Japanese, Yojijukugo | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment