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Can you help me?

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Can you help me?

Postby kuronekochan » Tue 02.01.2011 10:28 pm

I am trying to learn Japanese by learning different types of sentence structures then making up my own little story. Once I make up my little story in English I translate it into Japanese over and over again and then I eventually remember the way that the sentences should be structured.

However, I'm hoping that you guys can take a look at my translations so that I don't study the wrong thing :sweatdrop:

Thanks! :colonthree:

Hi! What are you doing?

Yesterday, I went to Sara’s house. She was cleaning her kitchen, but now she is cleaning her bathroom. She is cleaning while listening to music. She also went to Yokohama yesterday. She ate dinner there with Jason.

How was it? She said it was very delicious. The food was perfect. No, it wasn’t that expensive. Will she go to Yokohama today? No she won’t go because it is raining. She will probably go tomorrow. Maybe I’ll go too. It looks like fun.

Do you want to come, too? Tomorrow is no good. What about Saturday? Okay, Saturday is good. Well, I’m going to work now. I’ll talk to you later!


My Translation:

Moshi Moshi! Nani ga shite n desu ka.

Kinoo Sara no uchi e ikimashita. Kitchen wa soji o shimashita kedo, ima ofuro wa soji o shite imasu. Soji o suru shinagara ongaku o kikimasu. Kinoo mo Yokohama e ikimashita. Jason de bangohan o tabemashita.

Ikaga deshita ka. Totemo oishikatta so desu. Tabemono wa hodo ii deshita. Iie, sonnani takaku arimasen deshita. Kyoo ni Yokohama e ikiru deshoo ka. Iie, ikinai kara furimasu. Ashita wa tabun ikimasu. Moshika shitara watashi mo ikimasu. Tanoshisoo desu.

Anata ga kite hoshii desu ka. Ashita wa yoku arimasen ka. Dooyoubi ga doo desu ka. Ee, dooyoubi wa ii desu. Jaa, ima shigoto e ikimasu. Jaa mata ne!
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Re: Can you help me?

Postby NileCat » Tue 02.01.2011 11:37 pm

Hi kuronekochan,
I think your method is wonderful. There are many fluent speakers here and I believe everyone will gladly give you a hand. But I’d recommend you to check out a website called lang-8. (http://lang-8.com/) In case you just want simple corrections by native speakers, it would work for you. I’ll give you a correction just for the first sentence for, unfortunately, I don’t have time right now.

Moshi Moshi! Nani ga shite n desu ka.

“Moshi moshi” is usually used only on the telephone conversation. “Hi” (hai) is commonly used but if you’d like to make it sound more Japanese, the alternative would be “konnichiwa”. As you might know, “konnichiwa” is only used in day-time in our real life. But in writings it is assumed as something like “g’day”.
“Nani ga” has to be “nani o” here. The omitted subject is “you” here and “nani” is a kind of “object”. Like in “anata wa benkyou o shite imasu”. Even when the object word “study” was replaced by “nani”, the followed particle has to be the same, which is “o”. I know this kind of thing is very confusing. But believe me. Time will tell. :)
“Shite n desu ka” makes sense though “shite run desu ka” would be more natural. "Shite n desu ka" sounds kind of rough (not too coarce though) to native speakers' ears.

See you later!
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Re: Can you help me?

Postby Hyperworm » Wed 02.02.2011 4:41 am

It's possible that this is a telephone conversation of course... :)

These corrections should be mostly good, but I'm not a native speaker so be a little cautious.
[] = optional addition
(×) = deleted but not replaced by anything

Yesterday, I went to Sara’s house. Kinoo Sara no o-uchi e ikimashita.
- Or "ie" instead of "o-uchi". (I wonder about "e" vs "ni" here and at the end with "shigoto e"... I think this is okay though)
She was cleaning her kitchen, but now she is cleaning her bathroom. Kitchen no sooji o shite imashita kedo, ima ofuro no sooji o shite imasu.
She is cleaning while listening to music. sooji o (×suru)shinagara ongaku o kiite imasu.
She also went to Yokohama yesterday. Kinoo mo Yokohama e ikimashita.
- Good Japanese, but it means something different to the English. The Japanese implies she goes to Yokohama a lot. The English just says that going to Yokohama was yet another of the things she did yesterday. I'm not sure which you intended so I'll leave it as is ^^
She ate dinner there with Jason. Jason to [issho ni] bangohan o tabemashita.
- Unless she physically used Jason to eat the food you want "to" xD

How was it? Dou deshita?
- I'm not sure your original Japanese sentence works unless directed at Sara...
She said it was very delicious. Totemo oishikatta soo desu.
The food was perfect. Tabemono wa hodo ii deshita.
- I can't offer much help here. I'm not sure about "hodo ii", but I'm not confident that "kanpeki" works here either. Sorry ._.;

No, it wasn’t that expensive. Iie, sonnani takaku arimasen deshita.
- Missing line above? I guess I'll just assume we're not hearing all parts of one side of the conversation.
Will she go to Yokohama today? Kyoo mo Yokohama e iku no deshoo ka.
No she won’t go because it is raining. Iie, ame ga futte imasu kara ikimasen.
- Watch out for getting the halves the wrong way around with "kara".
She will probably go tomorrow. Ashita wa tabun ikimasu.
Maybe I’ll go too. Watashi mo ikimasu ka na.
- It might be just me but "moshika shitara" sounds to me like it's up to fate (not her choice / others' choices) whether she goes or not... Also, who's saying this line? Is it the main speaker or the person she's talking to?
It looks like fun. Tanoshisoo desu.

Do you want to come, too? [-san wa] ikitai n desu ka?"
- Avoid anata if you know their name. Also, you can use -tai form to ask about/confirm the wants of others. Also, this is just asking about whether the person "wants" to go; it's not an invite as such.
Tomorrow is no good. Ashita wa dame desu [ne]. / Ashita wa chotto [muzukashii desu ne]...
- I'm a little confused here. Your original Japanese was a question (which doesn't line up with the English), and why is this person saying "tomorrow is no good" after saying "maybe I'll go too [tomorrow]"? ... If it was the main speaker who originally said "maybe I'll go too", then the translation for the "do you want to come?" line will have to change a little, because you can only say "ikitai n desu ka?" if they've already hinted that they want to go.
What about Saturday? Dooyoubi wa doo desu ka.
- Seems like you have a little weakness with wa/ga. :)
Okay, Saturday is good. (×Ee, )dooyoubi wa [tsugoo ga / choodo] ii desu.
- "Ee" seems wrong... you can't answer a "how" question with "yes", so... I'm not sure what to put there instead, though. Also I'm a little worried about answering with "ii desu" because sometimes it can mean "I'm fine (thanks)", but I think it's good here. I included a couple of ways to clarify just in case.
Well, I’m going to work now. Jaa, ima shigoto e ikimasu [kara].
- (There's actually a verb for "go to work", "shukkin suru".)
I’ll talk to you later! Jaa mata ne!

______________________________________________________(end of corrections)

You might want to clarify the middle bit about coming to Yokohama together.
The translation's pretty context-dependent there, and it's easy to get wrong. :)

Anyway, seems like you're doing well :D Keep it up ^^
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Re: Can you help me?

Postby NileCat » Wed 02.02.2011 7:34 am

Perfection!
Thank you, Hyperworm.
:)
Keep on your good work, kuronekochan!

EDIT:
Hyperworm, I forgot to refer to "the food was perfect" part. You are right. "Kanpeki" perfectly works here. "Hodo ii" is not necessarily wrong, though, it would sound unnatural and the meaning somewhat differs from "perfect".
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Re: Can you help me?

Postby kuronekochan » Wed 02.02.2011 1:22 pm

Thank you so much for the help. Right now I'm posting on my touch screen phone so typing is going to get very annoying very fast, but once I get home I have a few questions about your replies :)

Im so silly. I really should have let you know that it is a phone conversation. The person speaking is telling the person on the phone about Sara's trip to Yokohama. The speaker then tells the person on the phone that he/she is thinking about going too. The speaker then asks the person on the phone if they would like to come along. All of the dialogue comes from the same person. I hope this clears things up.

Thanks again :)
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Re: Can you help me?

Postby kuronekochan » Wed 02.02.2011 4:46 pm

NileCat,

Thank you. I completely understand your explanation for “what are you doing”. As I mentioned above
I forgot to include the fact that this is a phone conversation and that is why I used “moshi moshi” rather than konnichi wa.
I’m glad you like my method. I started doing it this way because I signed up for shared talk.com and tried to speak with a native Japanese speaker and then realized that I couldn’t form everyday sentences. The sentences that I knew were based on what I was learning from the book that I study from.

I actually have heard of lang-8 and I’ve tried it out, but the responses are not very detailed.

Hyperworm,

Why is “no” used after Kitchen and ofuro?
For the sentence “Kinoo mo Yokohama e ikimashita.” What I meant to say was that in addition to cleaning yesterday she also went to Yokohama. Would it have been better if I said “Kinoo no Yokohama mo ikimashita”?

The sentence about Jason was definitely a mistake. I knew that lol

The “Dou deshita ka” was the speaker repeating what the person on the phone said. So basically it’s:

You [on the phone]: How was it?
Me: How was it? She said it was very delicious.
The same goes for the sentence where the speaker asks whether or not the person on the phone would like to come along. Once again…sorry for not mentioning that.

I’m not familiar with the “ka na” ending in the sentence “watashi mo ikimasu ka na” ? How exactly is it used and is it in it’s polite form?

Yes, I’m terrible when it comes to figuring out whether I should use wa or ga :neutral:

When I wrote “Ee” it goes back to what I was saying earlier. The “Dooyoubi wa doo desu ka” was the speaker repeating the person on the phone. The next sentence is the speaker confirming that Saturday is a good day to go. I guess the speaker is a little deaf but I wanted to get in as many different sentence structures as I could.

Thank you so much! I’m actually working on another little story. I had a lot of trouble with it though so the translation is probably pretty bad, but I’ll study this one before posting the next one. :colonthree:
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Re: Can you help me?

Postby NileCat » Wed 02.02.2011 5:45 pm

Very good, kuronekochan.
Sorry for the telephone thing. I should have realized that. :)
Let me answer to just two of your questions now. I have to go soon. Sorry!

Why is “no” used after Kitchen and ofuro?

Very good question.

She was cleaning her kitchen, but now she is cleaning her bathroom.
The important thing here is how you can make a contrast of the two things: what she was doing yesterday and what she is doing today, ok? The use of "kedo" is very good for that. But if you start it with “ofuro wa”, it will imply that the action you’re going to tell (to clean) was adopted only to ofuro. That “wa” is to be a so-called limitation wa. Your listeners would instantly imagine that “which means she didn’t clean anything else”. In order to avoid that kind of misunderstanding, we usually use “o” in this kind of sentence structure.

For the sentence “Kinoo mo Yokohama e ikimashita.” What I meant to say was that in addition to cleaning yesterday she also went to Yokohama. Would it have been better if I said “Kinoo no Yokohama mo ikimashita”?

In that case, “kinou wa Yokohama e mo ikimashita"or "kinou wa Yokohama ni mo ikimashita".

:)
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Re: Can you help me?

Postby chikara » Wed 02.02.2011 7:23 pm

NileCat wrote:......
Why is “no” used after Kitchen and ofuro?

......

NileCat-san, is it common to use キッチン for "kitchen"?

I was taught (Japanese for Busy People) that 台所 (だいどころ) is the word used for kitchen.
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Re: Can you help me?

Postby NileCat » Thu 02.03.2011 6:07 am

Chikara-san,
Overwhelming majority of people use キッチン as a proper Japanese word today. However, we often use 台所 too. The difference? Well, it depends. Generally speaking, older generation might prefer 台所. And キッチン would sound odd if you want to refer to a traditional Japanese style kitchen. The word キッチン has a nuance of somewhat western or/and modern compared to 台所.

kuronekochan wrote:You [on the phone]: How was it?
Me: How was it? She said it was very delicious.

In that case, the question “ikaga deshita ka?” and “dou deshita ka?” are both fine. (The former is more polite) But the reply is, well, kind of complicated. This is not a matter of grammar but a custom. The simple repeating the same words doesn’t work in Japanese. When we want to, we add “tte?” or “desu tte?” at the end of the sentence. “Dou deshita ka tte?”

kuronekochan (in the first post) wrote: Ashita wa tabun ikimasu. Moshika shitara watashi mo ikimasu.

Ok. Now I got the situation of the conversation. In that case, “Moshika shitara watashi mo ikimasu” is fine. But, the proper sentence is “Moshika shitara watashi mo iku kamo siremasen”
There are quite a few ways to express a certain nuance when it comes to “uncertainty”. Something like the differences between “maybe”, “probably”, “would”, “might”, and all that jazz. It would require a chapter in a book to cover all of them, I’m afraid.
Hyperworm’s “ka na” is one of the casual expressions. It is usually used by middle-aged or elderly males when it follows desu/masu. (But it CAN convey a nuance when young person deliberately uses it)
e.g.
I’ll go, I guess.
Ikou kana. (casual, commonly used by anyone)
Ikimasu kana. (casual, mainly used by middle-aged and older, male)
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Re: Can you help me?

Postby Hyperworm » Thu 02.03.2011 7:54 am

Heh, looks like I was slightly off the mark on a couple points ^^;; Speaking is hard :sweatdrop:

Thanks for the clarification on "-ou ka na" vs "-masu ka na", NileCat :)
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Re: Can you help me?

Postby NileCat » Thu 02.03.2011 9:56 am

But you know what? The expression you used totally fits your avatar! That can make a very cute, friendly, and sophisticated feeling! I personally think that you should stick to the usage, at least here! :)
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Re: Can you help me?

Postby kuronekochan » Fri 02.04.2011 1:45 am

Oh okay, I see. I understand why "no" should be used. I wasn't aware of the fact that I could use e + mo. I really wanted to but I always feel as if two particles should never be placed next to each other. Thanks again :D

When I originally translated this I used "tte" rather than having the speaking repeat what Sara had said, but then I read somewhere online that "tte" was mostly used by older men. Have you ever heard of that? Would it be wrong if I [22 year old female] used it?

Do you have any advice on where I could learn more on "uncertainty"? It's still a bit confusing. :think:
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Re: Can you help me?

Postby NileCat » Fri 02.04.2011 6:39 am

When I originally translated this I used "tte" rather than having the speaking repeat what Sara had said, but then I read somewhere online that "tte" was mostly used by older men. Have you ever heard of that? Would it be wrong if I [22 year old female] used it?

That information you read is, unfortunately, totally wrong. You can use it even if you’re younger.

Tae Kim’s guide seems to explain the basics of the “certainty” thing.
http://www.guidetojapanese.org/learn/grammar/certainty
If you find it too simple, feel free to post further questions. Someone could give you more helpful links.
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