Category Archives: Japanese

It was the best of stuff, it was the worst of stuff

玉石混淆 gyoku.seki.kon.kou Literally: jewel – stone – mix – mix Alternately: Good mixed with bad. Valuable things mixed together with worthless things. Wheat and chaff. Notes: Rare character 淆 may be replaced with 交 without any change in meaning or … Continue reading

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Green grow the rushes

Oh. 急いては事を仕損じる (Seite wa koto wo shisonjiru; “To hurry is to fail”) Definition: If you rush things you’re going to make mistakes, and your attempt at speed will end up having been in vain. When pressed or pressured, be extra … Continue reading

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Mere anarchy

Does the candy association accept this member mint? 四分五裂 shi.bun.go.retsu Literally: four – part – five – split Alternately: Disintegration. Things coming apart. Order breaking down and chaos taking over. Notes: The 分 may also be pronounced bu, although this … Continue reading

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Book learnin’ minus brain learnin’ ain’t learnin’

But a rabbit-hole is just as dangerous. 学びて思わざれば則ち罔し (Manabite omowazareba sunawachi kurashi; “Study without consideration is nothing.”) Definition: No matter how much you study, if you don’t also think about the content of what you’re learning, you can’t actually reach … Continue reading

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One piece of sushi?

寿司一貫 is the correct counter! 終始一貫 shuu.shi.i-.kkan Literally: end – begin – one – pierce Alternately: Unchanging. Consistent. Without any variation, straight through from beginning to end, especially in one’s way of doing things. Notes: This phrase comes to us … Continue reading

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Rome didn’t fruit in a day

Still faster than truffula trees, though. 桃栗三年柿八年 (Momokuri sannen kaki hachinen; “Peach and chestnut, three years; persimmons, eight years.”) Definition: As Piet Hein said, Things Take Time. The peach and chestnut trees must grow for three years from when they … Continue reading

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He’s a guy of delusions, alright

But is it still paranoia if you’re guilty of crimes? 被害妄想 hi.gai.mou.sou Literally: incur – harm – delusion – thought Alternately: A persecution complex. Paranoia. A deluded belief that one is being unfairly singled out, specifically targeted, or harmed even … Continue reading

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