Tag Archives: Japanese culture

The ease of TITO

上げ膳据え膳 (Agezen suezen; “Table-clearing; table-setting”) Definition: Not doing anything; having everything done for one. Can be positive, as when describing the service at a luxury resort, or negative, as when describing a friend or family member who isn’t pulling their … Continue reading

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Has your son married a mouse?

Sorry for the late kotowaza post this week! Things are getting busy, and I had a heck of a time trying to come up with an example usage. Anyway, here’s a beautiful example of folk etymology run amok. 秋茄子嫁に食わすな (Akinasubi yome … Continue reading

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Literally half the plot of the Tale of Genji

壁に耳あり障子に目あり (Kabe ni mimi ari shouji ni me ari; “The walls have ears, the doors have eyes”) Definition: If you’re talking about something that you want to keep secret for any reason, be careful. Keep in mind how much of … Continue reading

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