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Adressing a stranger

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Adressing a stranger

Postby danceswithfire » Wed 06.11.2008 4:11 pm

I was watching the anime Detective Conan, and I noticed that they would call strangers uncle or aunt, and I was wondering why. Does uncle and aunt not mean family in Japan? Or is Uncle just Sir, and Aunt just Ma'am?
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Re: Adressing a stranger

Postby richvh » Wed 06.11.2008 4:23 pm

Ojisan (uncle) and obasan (aunt) are commonly used to refer to man and women of middle age. A couple of manga I have read had characters in their 20s complain about being called "ojisan" by children; one suggested "onisan" (big brother) be used instead.
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Re: Adressing a stranger

Postby Yudan Taiteki » Wed 06.11.2008 6:18 pm

My impression is that it's a little childish, though, I wouldn't use that type of address if you are high school age or beyond, particularly if you're a male.
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Re: Adressing a stranger

Postby Mike Cash » Wed 06.11.2008 8:09 pm

Yudan Taiteki wrote:My impression is that it's a little childish, though, I wouldn't use that type of address if you are high school age or beyond, particularly if you're a male.


I've seen plenty of grown men using it. And by grown men I mean guys old enough to have kids who have kids.
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Re: Adressing a stranger

Postby Harisenbon » Wed 06.11.2008 8:48 pm

Mike Cash wrote:I've seen plenty of grown men using it. And by grown men I mean guys old enough to have kids who have kids.


However, you need to be careful about who you use it with.
Calling random people おじさん or おばさん might offend them (especially the latter) ;)

Whenever I find myself NEEDing a pronoun to address someone, I always err on the side of だんな or おくさん.
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Re: Adressing a stranger

Postby Yudan Taiteki » Wed 06.11.2008 9:03 pm

Mike Cash wrote:
Yudan Taiteki wrote:My impression is that it's a little childish, though, I wouldn't use that type of address if you are high school age or beyond, particularly if you're a male.


I've seen plenty of grown men using it. And by grown men I mean guys old enough to have kids who have kids.


Well, my impressions aren't always right. :)
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Re: Adressing a stranger

Postby danceswithfire » Thu 06.12.2008 7:28 pm

thanks everyone ^^
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Re: Adressing a stranger

Postby Mike Cash » Fri 06.13.2008 4:00 am

Yudan Taiteki wrote:
Mike Cash wrote:
Yudan Taiteki wrote:My impression is that it's a little childish, though, I wouldn't use that type of address if you are high school age or beyond, particularly if you're a male.


I've seen plenty of grown men using it. And by grown men I mean guys old enough to have kids who have kids.


Well, my impressions aren't always right. :)


And the folks I see aren't necessarily always something I would recommend to others as role models.
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Re: Adressing a stranger

Postby spin13 » Fri 06.13.2008 5:16 am

Harisenbon wrote:However, you need to be careful about who you use it with.
Calling random people おじさん or おばさん might offend them (especially the latter) ;)

Whenever I find myself NEEDing a pronoun to address someone, I always err on the side of だんな or おくさん.


In what situation(s) would you use パパ, ママ, お父さん, and お母さん? Now that I think about it, I can't recall using だんな or おくさん without having first heard somebody else using it and I otherwise don't know which is appropriate when.

And does anybody anywhere still use 女将さん or is simply a thing of old-timey novels and movies?

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