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Made up conversation in the present tense

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Made up conversation in the present tense

Postby Mr.Paper » Wed 07.29.2009 11:00 pm

At a restaurant.

Waiter: konnichiwa

Client: konnichiwa

Waiter: kyo wa nani o hoshii ka

Client: hai, ehhh, ikutsuka no sushi o hoshii. kudasai.

Waiter: kyo wa sushi o sugoi desu nee

Client: a so desu ka, sugoi!

Translation:

Hello!

Hello.

What do you want today?

Yes, ummm, some sushi, please

Todays sushi is amazing!

Really? Great!
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Re: Made up conversation in the present tense

Postby becki_kanou » Thu 07.30.2009 3:33 am

Mr.Paper wrote:At a restaurant.

Waiter: konnichiwa

Client: konnichiwa

Waiter: kyo wa nani o hoshii ka

Client: hai, ehhh, ikutsuka no sushi o hoshii. kudasai.

Waiter: kyo wa sushi o sugoi desu nee

Client: a so desu ka, sugoi!

Translation:

Hello!

Hello.

What do you want today?

Yes, ummm, some sushi, please

Todays sushi is amazing!

Really? Great!


Excellent effort, but this type of exchange (between a customer and a server) is usually very by-the-book and uses a lot of fixed expressions.

The waiter will usually begin with:
ご注文は?(go-chuumon ha?)
(May I take/what is) Your order?
Using hoshii here is a little too direct; it's rare to ask people what they WANT, and more natural to use phrases like ◯はどうですか?or ◯はいかがですか? (How about ◯?) Also when you do use hoshii, it goes with が (ga) rather than を (wo).

And the customer will reply:
寿司をください/寿司をお願いします (sushi wo kudasai/ sushi wo onegaishimasu)
Sushi please.
Again, using hoshii feels a little direct. Also in English (probably Spanish as well I'd imagine), we use quantifiers like "some" all the time, but it feels strange to do this in Japanese; so rather than いくつかの寿司 (ikutsuka no sushi) just plain old 寿司 (sushi) is fine.

The next one should be:
今日は寿司がおいしいですよ。 (kyou ha sushi ga oishii desu yo)
Today the sushi is delicious.
You want to use が rather than を again here because sushi is the subject, not the direct object. を is used to mark the object of the verb. Also よ (yo) would be more natural than ね (ne) because the waiter is imparting new information, not agreeing with the customer.

Finally, the last one is quite good, but すごい (sugoi) seems like an odd choice of word in this situation. It's used for something surprising or great, but a restaurant having tasty sushi is to be expected; although you might very well say すごい after you eat the sushi and discover how yummy it really is. Perhaps something like いいですね (ii desu ne). That's good. would be a bit more natural.

All in all a good job! I think these types of ritualized social interactions can be much more difficult than just free conversation, because there are scripts that you have to follow, and you are expected to say things in a certain way.
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Re: Made up conversation in the present tense

Postby two_heads_talking » Thu 07.30.2009 10:43 am

Becki has some very good information in there.

One other thing to consider. Most, if not all waiters/waitresses will be speaking very politely.. They will be ending their sentences with at least Desu and Masu endings. ....hoshii ka? is not a very polite question. If it were asked they would at least say, "......hoshii desu ka?" or perhaps "....... hoshii deshouka?" or even "...... hoshii degozaismasuka?"
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Re: Made up conversation in the present tense

Postby Mr.Paper » Thu 07.30.2009 5:12 pm

The waiter will usually begin with:
ご注文は?(go-chuumon ha?)
(May I take/what is) Your order?
Using hoshii here is a little too direct; it's rare to ask people what they WANT, and more natural to use phrases like ◯はどうですか?or ◯はいかがですか? (How about ◯?) Also when you do use hoshii, it goes with が (ga) rather than を (wo).

And the customer will reply:
寿司をください/寿司をお願いします (sushi wo kudasai/ sushi wo onegaishimasu)
Sushi please.
Again, using hoshii feels a little direct. Also in English (probably Spanish as well I'd imagine), we use quantifiers like "some" all the time, but it feels strange to do this in Japanese; so rather than いくつかの寿司 (ikutsuka no sushi) just plain old 寿司 (sushi) is fine.

The next one should be:
今日は寿司がおいしいですよ。 (kyou ha sushi ga oishii desu yo)
Today the sushi is delicious.
You want to use が rather than を again here because sushi is the subject, not the direct object. を is used to mark the object of the verb. Also よ (yo) would be more natural than ね (ne) because the waiter is imparting new information, not agreeing with the customer.

Finally, the last one is quite good, but すごい (sugoi) seems like an odd choice of word in this situation. It's used for something surprising or great, but a restaurant having tasty sushi is to be expected; although you might very well say すごい after you eat the sushi and discover how yummy it really is. Perhaps something like いいですね (ii desu ne). That's good. would be a bit more natural.

All in all a good job! I think these types of ritualized social interactions can be much more difficult than just free conversation, because there are scripts that you have to follow, and you are expected to say things in a certain way.


Thanks for the help. The first tip I couldn't understand cause there was a giant circle next to hado desu and the other expression. I thought it would go with ga, thats what my dictionary says too. And is "ha" supposed to be wa? Can't sushi be the object and today the topic?
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Re: Made up conversation in the present tense

Postby Mr.Paper » Thu 07.30.2009 5:17 pm

Kyo wa sushi o sugoi desu yo

Today's (particle) sushi (particle) amazing is.

Wa indicates that today's is the topic of the sentence. Desu is a verb (to be) refering to sushi, the direct object, so the particle "o" is used.

Today's sushi is amzing.
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Re: Made up conversation in the present tense

Postby NocturnalOcean » Thu 07.30.2009 5:39 pm

Mr.Paper wrote:Kyo wa sushi o sugoi desu yo

Today's (particle) sushi (particle) amazing is.

Wa indicates that today's is the topic of the sentence. Desu is a verb (to be) refering to sushi, the direct object, so the particle "o" is used.

Today's sushi is amzing.


First of all Desu is not a verb, it is either a copula or a politenessmarker.
When it follows adjectives called i-adjectives, it functions as a politeness marker.
When you describe something using adjectives, you use ga(or wa if it is the topic).

sushi ga sugoi desu.

Edit:

Also want to mention that when you use wo with a verb, it's only when the verb itself is transitive(It takes an object).
When the verb is intransitive(no object), you use ga.

Transitive example: ボールを投げる(booru wo nageru) Throw a ball
Intransitive example: 猫が木から落ちた(The cat fell down the tree)
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Re: Made up conversation in the present tense

Postby becki_kanou » Thu 07.30.2009 8:51 pm

Mr.Paper wrote: Thanks for the help. The first tip I couldn't understand cause there was a giant circle next to hado desu and the other expression. I thought it would go with ga, thats what my dictionary says too. And is "ha" supposed to be wa? Can't sushi be the object and today the topic?


Ah, the circle is just a place holder like X to show that anything can go there, e.g. sushi wa dou desu ka?, ocha wa dou desu ka?, ringo wa dou desu ka? etc.

Ha is indeed particle は(wa), I'm used to typing it as ha on the computer so I didn't change it to wa when I wrote in romaji.

As Nocturnal Ocean explained, です(desu) is not really a verb, but a special structure called the copula. Check [url="http://www.guidetojapanese.org/copula.html"]Tae Kim's grammar guide[/url] for more information. In his explanation だ(da) is the same as です(desu). だ is informal/plain and です is formal/polite.
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Re: Made up conversation in the present tense

Postby Mr.Paper » Tue 08.04.2009 9:32 pm

NocturnalOcean wrote:First of all Desu is not a verb, it is either a copula or a politenessmarker.
When it follows adjectives called i-adjectives, it functions as a politeness marker.
When you describe something using adjectives, you use ga(or wa if it is the topic).

sushi ga sugoi desu.

Edit:

Also want to mention that when you use wo with a verb, it's only when the verb itself is transitive(It takes an object).
When the verb is intransitive(no object), you use ga.

Transitive example: ボールを投げる(booru wo nageru) Throw a ball
Intransitive example: 猫が木から落ちた(The cat fell down the tree)


Um, first of all, desu is a verb. A copula means linking verb. Thanks for the grammar info on the particlo "o" and adjectives, that really helped me.
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Re: Made up conversation in the present tense

Postby Yudan Taiteki » Tue 08.04.2009 10:09 pm

Mr.Paper wrote:Um, first of all, desu is a verb.


desu is usually not called a verb for Japanese because it doesn't operate like other words such as "wakaru" or "iku". It only operates as a copula after nouns (and na adjectives), after -i adjectives it only marks politeness and has no meaning.
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Re: Made up conversation in the present tense

Postby Mr.Paper » Tue 08.04.2009 10:18 pm

Yudan Taiteki wrote:
Mr.Paper wrote:Um, first of all, desu is a verb.


desu is usually not called a verb for Japanese because it doesn't operate like other words such as "wakaru" or "iku". It only operates as a copula after nouns (and na adjectives), after -i adjectives it only marks politeness and has no meaning.


sushi ga sugoi desu yo. That means: The sushi is great! So desu must be copulating the adjective and the subject. So desu does have a meaning after i-adjectives, otherwise it would translate into, Sushi great!, which doesn't make any sense at all because its grammaticly incorrect.
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Re: Made up conversation in the present tense

Postby Infidel » Tue 08.04.2009 10:23 pm

Mr.Paper wrote:
Um, first of all, desu is a verb. A copula means linking verb. Thanks for the grammar info on the particlo "o" and adjectives, that really helped me.


Don't place too much value in English grammatical terms when referring to a foreign language. Using terms that refer to a words similar usage often neglects how it is different.

sushi ga sugoi desu yo. That means: The sushi is great! So desu must be copulating the adjective and the subject. So desu does have a meaning after i-adjectives, otherwise it would translate into, Sushi great!, which doesn't make any sense at all because its grammaticly incorrect.


You're showing your ignorance. The meaning would be exactly the same if it were sushi ga sugoi yo. Desu just makes the sentence more polite. Some courses refer to i-adjectives as verbal-adjectives because they have a built-in copula, and they conjugate, much the way verbs do.
Last edited by Infidel on Tue 08.04.2009 10:27 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Made up conversation in the present tense

Postby Yudan Taiteki » Tue 08.04.2009 10:25 pm

Mr.Paper wrote:
Yudan Taiteki wrote:
Mr.Paper wrote:Um, first of all, desu is a verb.


desu is usually not called a verb for Japanese because it doesn't operate like other words such as "wakaru" or "iku". It only operates as a copula after nouns (and na adjectives), after -i adjectives it only marks politeness and has no meaning.


sushi ga sugoi desu yo. That means: The sushi is great! So desu must be copulating the adjective and the subject. So desu does have a meaning after i-adjectives, otherwise it would translate into, Sushi great!, which doesn't make any sense at all because its grammaticly incorrect.


"Sushi ga sugoi yo" also means "The sushi is great!", just in plain style instead of desu/masu style. An -i adjective already has the copula in it without any additional words -- "sugoi" means "is great", not just "great".
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Re: Made up conversation in the present tense

Postby Mr.Paper » Tue 08.04.2009 10:47 pm

Infidel wrote:You're showing your ignorance. The meaning would be exactly the same if it were sushi ga sugoi yo. Desu just makes the sentence more polite. Some courses refer to i-adjectives as verbal-adjectives because they have a built-in copula, and they conjugate, much the way verbs do.

Ok thank you for the grammar info. But I don't appreciate the way you say "You're showing your ignorance.," that just sounds harsh and mean.
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Re: Made up conversation in the present tense

Postby Sairana » Tue 08.04.2009 11:43 pm

Mr.Paper wrote:Ok thank you for the grammar info. But I don't appreciate the way you say "You're showing your ignorance.," that just sounds harsh and mean.


What does it sound like when someone very new to Japanese argues bad information with someone who knows more Japanese than most of the people on this forum?
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Re: Made up conversation in the present tense

Postby Hyperworm » Tue 08.04.2009 11:50 pm

Just to make sure this doesn't escalate, I'm going to put it politely myself ^^;
Mr.Paper wrote:Desu is a verb (to be) refering to sushi, the direct object, so the particle "o" is used.
Mr.Paper wrote:Um, first of all, desu is a verb.
Mr.Paper wrote:So desu does have a meaning after i-adjectives,
In all three of these you were basically directly saying that the people you were replying to were wrong, as fact. Not that there's anything wrong with correcting people, but three times in a row, by a beginner, to site regulars? ;)
I guess this was your way of reasoning through the confusion, but still, you should be a bit more suspicious of your own knowledge or it might create a little hostility ^^;
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