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Keeping Track Of What's With Me

JPLT 3kyuu ga dekimashita!!!
This is old news to some of the friends but I want to announce that

I PASSED LEVEL 3 JLPT..... as a fluke!!!
I got something around 68%. The passing rate was 60%.
Honestly, I do not feel that I am a 3 kyuu passer. I can modestly say that I did not study. I only studied the vocab/kanji needed. I am quite surprised that I survived the grammar part as well.

Well, I did study (sort of) when I was having a part time as a Korean tutor. But the year or the months leading to the test I did not prepare at all as far as grammar is concerned. Well maybe being exposed to Japanese at work rubbed off. I was really surprised that the listening part was manageable.  

Yes I have the 3 kyuu on paper and I can now place it in my resume but I really should study the grammar patterns properly. The classes in NCF have been helpful as far as its a venue that I am forced to blab in Japanese which I do not get to do in other places without coming off as crazy. Also, my classmates are great people and the teacher is kalog. Heheheeh...

I hope I can still muster funds for the next semester of class though. This unplanned lay off is really a monkey wrench in my long term plans. Damn it...

Japanese and Korean drama production train chugs along merrily

I link you to javabeans insightful post on news about the latest Korean and Japan productions.




I am really excited by this bit of news. As you all know I am an avid drama watcher.

Japanese and Korean collaborations rank high in my happiness meter as well. All these projects basically mean the posh pretty to look at Korean production meets heartwarming, heartstring tugging writing of Japanese drama tradition. I like Japanese dramas for the writing, how things are subtle and force you to think. I like Korean dramas on the other hand for their pretty cinematography and production values. I am not saying that the Koreans do bad writing or Japanese do not do flashy productions. This collaboration takes the strengths of what each party has to offer and then tries to mash them up for a very good entertaining product.


Also as an added tidbit, Sandara Park is being tapped in one of the short TV movies (if I am correct) good for her. She has already been dead in a PV, become a kunoichi trainee so what is next for her?  


In this revision post, I shall combine chapters 23 and 24.


In chapter 23 there are only two major grammar points文法規則.

One is about using the noun とき and the other one is the causal relationship between sentences necessitated by the particle .



第23課の文法規則Collapse )



Now for my own sentences for this chapter:



When I am lonely, I go to Karaoke and eat stuff like sweet cake and chocolates.



When one loses his ID, he must to apply for a affidavit of loss.



When I eat prawns and the like, my allergies appear.



My company is at the right when you turn left right at the second corner from the station, then walk for about 20 meters straight and finally cross the bridge.


For chapter 24, 呉れる is introduced. So all the related verbs with 呉れる is also mentioned here in passing as a review. Another point in the lesson is how the verbs 呉れる、あげる、貰う when used as helping verbs (specifically when they are preceded with the conjunctive form of another verb) show a favor is done to someone by somebody. The helping verb used determines what direction and implication the favor does to the indirect object or the speaker.



第24課の文法規則Collapse )



My own sentences:


The old man gave my grandmother some various treats as souvenir



The boss taught the junior the way to use the machine.



My aunt sent me my electronic dictionary.


What about Alto and Michel sing instead of the pop stars?

Whahaahahha... well the art displayed with this sound mod puts things in perspective.
Its the Nyan Nyan Special service medley tweaked to make it seem that Alto and Michel sing it instead of Ranka and Sheryl.
So in this medley its Alto = Sheryl and then Michel=Ranka.
It is pretty passable (I can remember that the seiyuu's voices sounded like what was being presented in the audio stream)but things can get confusing as to who is singing who.

Shouta Ranka for the WIN!!!!
I wanted to hear a male Ranka!!! So apparently I was not looking at the right tags. The people of Nico Nico decided to call the male version of Ranka sa ラン太 りー (errr probably read as Ranta or Rantai/Randai Lee)so when I understood that and looked at the proper tags I was able to see/hear very good versions of a male Ranka!!!

He sure sounds like a shouta. But he can sing well. Uhmm. Well in terms of looking it from a Jpop perspective. It is like kiddy bubblegum male (the preteen and uhm up to 14 year old)Jpop but not the annoying JE kind. To be honest, he sounds like a shouta in anime that is voiced by female seiyuu. But I find it amusing.

I cannot pinpoint it but I already heared this kind of voice sometime somewhere. It is nagging! Maybe Erriol form Card Captor Sakura!?!?! Or those characters in Anime that act like tomboy.... AHHHH Sailor Uranus!!!! That is it. Oh BTW the word for tomboy in Japanese is "お転婆さん" (otenbasan)

Here is the longest video that I can find and samples all Ranka's vocal tracks in Macross F.


The cutest (?!?! wtf) is the Nanairo Ninjin song!!! Wahhahahaa... Thats sooo wrong in sooo many levels!!

I really wanted to hear a full version for Seikan Hikou and Ai Oboeteimasu ka. But there isn't too baad.

On a side note, there were also rearrangement of some of the songs available for listening. I like the jazz ones for Seikan Hikou

Macross Frontier also gets the gender bending treatment
I would assume that any popular anime with poignant characters usually get to be gender bent by Japanese otaku who loves fiddling with audio tracks more so after the Volcaloid software has been published.  I was really amused at the Haruhi's seiyuu and Chemistry comparisons. So I wondered if there were for Macross Frontier because there were a lot of singing for this anime. 

I once again scoured Nico Nico douga for Macross Frontier Fan made videos. I happen to notice that there were alot of Fanmade videos for the OST vocal tracks that were changed in pitch. They were aiming to make Ranka and/or Sheryl have male voices and see if it will still sound good. Well, I am biased and only loaded videos whose titles said that Sheryl/Ranka would sound like one of the guys from Chemistry. And also the apparent favorite was May'n's voice being changed into a male singing voice.

I am sharing some of the videos I really found interesting.


This first one is Lion. Well, all in all, it sounds good. Many commenters said it sounds like Kpop now. I also hold that opinion. I could totally imagine a group like DBSK singing this. XD All throughout the video commenters were lightly bantering about the vocals sound like who. As for sounding like Chemistry, in some lines, it sounded like Douchin with a hoarse voice singing. ehehehe.. Well I wrote "hoarse" but it sounds good. XD My weird choice of words needs an explanation. I happen to stumble on Nico Nico once a live performance video of Chemistry. Douchin might have had the flu or a cold back then but still the performance was great. He was not sounding like his usual self but his voice came out a little sexier than normal. XDXD At some times, the vocals would sound like  Ken Hirai without going falcetto. Hehehe. Ken HIrai is a good singer but I don't like him singing in falcetto that much. Lastly, some commenters were also saying that it is like Jero  singing. If you do not know Jero, he is an American who established himself quite quickly in Japan as a solid ENKA singer. Personally, when I listen to it I do not hear Jero though. 


This next video is Sagittarius Don't be late. I actually had the chance to listen to two versions of the modified song. One is like 7 mins long and the other is of the same length with the original. The first one got longer because the "moder" slowed down the tempo as well. What I found  amazing was that the slower version has enunciation of the words crystal clear! I am bad at hearing Nihongo especially with songs but I was amazed how clear the enunciation was. If this really just taken from the original and just slowed down a bit, that means I am just imagining the slurring of sounds that I have been hearing. Wow, May'n is such a singer that even if its quite this fast she perfectly enunciates what she is singing. As for the vocals sounding like a Japanese artist, I got to say that this one is Ken Hirai without the tendency to go falcetto all over the place.


Another one is all about What about my star at formo. This one is a bit special than the other videos because the uploader also went to the trouble of editing some screen caps and swapping bodies and hair. He actually was able to make a convincing male "Ranka" with Ai kun screencap.  The vocals on this one is definitely reminiscent of Kpop boybands!! The image of Kpop bands that go to Japan and sing in Japanese is the mental image I get when I listen to this song for quite a few times. But well the vocal histrionics is similar to what you can hear from JE bands but somehow it has a indescribable Korean color to the whole song.


Last one is Diamond Crevasse. I LOLed when I saw that one of the tags for this video was "Dont onichaan". Also another funny tag for this is the infamous "Yaranaika?". XDXDXD It is probably because of the art that the video came along with. It featured a guy whose character design is from Gundam Seed Destiny but wearing the scant tube top (tank top?) and miniskirt (micro shorts?) with suspenders Sherly is fond to wear for her concerts in the series. The guy is in a suggestive postion with his midrift exposed to world and his hips thrust forward. WAHAHAHA.. Anyways, this sounds like Douchin a bit more than any other videos I saw available. Well you can also say he also sounds like a subdued Ken Hirai whose whispering. WAHAHAHA..

Translating woes... again
Bored at the office but still high with "Macross Frontier" I try my hand at translating some of the songs so that I have an idea what Ranka or Sheryl is singing about.

Triangular is a bit hard... but I have an idea of what the song is trying to say anyway. The fansubs did a good job of what can be seen in the anime already. hehehe

Seikan Hikou is a fun song. Well because it is the song the Ranka has with that handsign that can make giants gush like idiots. Wahahaha
But the problem is that I feel when I translate into English the imagery losses its impact. I do not know why as to I feel like it. Maybe I am just biased. Well the good thing about all this is that I somehow am starting to think in Japanese which is what exactly I like and want. Hehehe.. 

I'll just pick out a stanza and post it here. Well the fansubs i think already have their own translation for this but this is how I read it. 

あなたに急降下 ah ah

For my translation:

Riding a comet,
I swoop towards you
In the azure of the starlit sky
We are like fireworks.
Our hearts shoot out arrows of light!

Seeing in english kinda dilutes the whole romanticism. Hehehe...

みんなの日本語 弟二十二課 Revision

Pretty boring chapter for the book IMHO. The lesson just covers subordinate clauses modifying nouns. So the main grammar point for this chapter is that you can modify any noun in the sentence by sticking a "sentence" in plain form 普通形 before the noun you wish to have any added info about and that is it.

So to illustrate, I will lift the examples in the book and then underline the "sentence"/ subordinate clause used to modify a noun in the main sentence.

1. これは ミラーさんが作ったケーキです。 This is the cake that Mr MIller made.
2. あそこにいる人はミラーさんです。 That person over there is Mr. MIller.
3. 昨日 習った言葉を忘れました。  I forgot the words I learned yesterday.
4. 買い物に行く時間がありません。 I dont have time to go shopping.

Also, we were introduced with verbs that deal with clothing.

着ます kimasu  to put on pieces of clothing from the waist up
はきます hakimasu to put on pieces of clothing from the waist down (you can include the belt here but there is a more proper verb for that)
かぶります kaburimasu to put something over your head
かけます kakemasu to "hang" (this is used for when you want to say wear glasses for reading or sunglasses and the like)

Also be reminded that the Japanese call pieces of clothing quite differently. I do not want to go into details here but a quick look at dictionaries may be needed when one will go to shop at Ginza.

For my own sentences:

 The tune that you are humming made me remember my childhood memories.
2. 昨日寝坊しました。 真夜中まで「Macross Frontier」と言うアニメを見ました。
 I slept late last night. I watched "Macross Frontier" anime until the wee hours.
3. 昨日友達を送った手紙をもら。
 I received the letter my friend sent.
4. この手では孔を穿つ天気だと言ってばよ!
 These hands shall pierce the heavens!!!


Thoughts on Macross Frontier and the mecha genre in my anime viewing habits....
Arrghhh I am still spazzing over the 15th episode of Macross Frontier.  That is the best confrontation I have ever seen! When Sheryl and Ranka openly "attack" Alto with their own version of uta gassen 歌合戦, I was really enthralled. Wahaha (I went ahead and spoiled my viewing pleasure by reading in wikipedia bits and pieces of the world of Macross. I am anticipating the song filled last battle between the Borg, the human race, the Zentraldi and the Zerglike creatures. hehehehe)

Well if John Lennon is still alive and got to see what some of the presumptions of this show is having, he would have a freakin field day.

I am really amazed with my reaction towards this series. I absolutely love it notwithstanding my conscious effort to disdain mecha. I did not like Gundam, the flagship bearer for anything mecha, because it was about the human race conquering the vastness of Space. I am not so much sold to that idea. I particulary like Macross because it is a thought execise on how can a race like us humans find a home in Space. I like it that it has some sort of semblace of humility with regards to what we can see towards the future. It also is a testmament of the potency of popular culture. Some things are taken too far literally but you cannot be happy when you see something like an MTV-ish thing in front you entertaining you right?  

One more mecha story worth mentioning would be Eureka seven. I liked that because well its a freakin love story like this one and it is reminiscent of the Studio Ghibli classic Nausicaa and the Valley of the Wind in some themes. Also the show has an awesome repertoire of not so mainstream OST choices. hehehe...

I knew Macross so that I wont be left behind in discussion if ever it came up. However, I did not imagine that I will be this hooked on a series under the franchise. That is also my opinion with Gundam series. I become easily bored with Gundam series. However, i like the whole naked barbie doll bodies floating in space they do in the Opening theme. wahwahwah...

My choices in mecha anime seem to prove a pattern. Probably, I will watch a mecha anime if it is not so much about Mecha and if there is a good soundtrack to it. hehehe

Japanese lesson revision 1
Since I am now taking formal classes again, I think I better do lesson revisions so that I can review and actually put into some use what I have learned.  I think its a better way to use this blog and I can also share what I am learning to anyone interested. I will try as much as I can to do revisions every after every lesson so that I can also use this blog as a reviewer when I need to.

Last week and probably this week's lesson is about making conjectures and reporting statements. There are 3 main grammar  points 文法規則 in the lesson namely:

1 ~と思う for conjectures.  This translates to "I think that ~" but different from the nuance of consciously considering something mentally. That should be expressed with the verb 考える.
        明日雨が降ると思います。 It think it  will rain tomorrow.
 Usage: This one is easy just use the 普通形 speech in the subordinate clause you need to form an opinion about.
2. ~と言う for reporting statements. You can use this to directly retell what has been said or to report what have been said.
  1) to retell directly
      「バカ!」と言う。 He/She said "Fool!"
     2) to report what have been said
     首相は来月アメリカへいくと言いました。 The prime minister said that he will be going to the USA next month.
 Usage: The first connotation can be achieved much by just repeating what was said and then finish the thing off with と言う.
               It is that simple. As for the second one, use the plain form much like with the first grammar rule.
3. the copula でしょう for saying a possibility or to express a certain amount of certainty to a statement.
 七月に京都でお祭りがあるでしょうか? There is a festival in Kyoto in July, isn't there?
    Usage: Much like the previous grammar points, plain form of speech is the way to go here.
Some other words/points used/introduced in the lesson are:
多分 supposedly
ぜひ certainly (adv)
勿論 certainly (interjection, adv)
verb stem + 安い easy to (verb)
~について concering ~ (usually a topic)
最近 recently
そんなに not so much (used with negative predicates)
仕方がない / しょうがないIt cannot be helped
(noun)~でも something like ~

Then now for my own sentences. I made these sentences to practice myself with the main grammar points discussed  and to review some of the vocabulary, and grammar rules that were not necessarily used in the discussion in class. I had fun doing these sentences. They are supposed to be memory ques so that I can remember easily the grammar point used. Also, I took the liberty of playing around with the intended gender of the speaker as well as the politeness level. It is much fun that way than to stay at the polite form all the time.

 I tell you my grandfather is better than yours!

  When Makino got mad at Doumyouji, she said "Will you fucking quit it!"

  Our manager (in Philippine context) said that two of my collegues will be laid off.

4. 私たちの人生は冒険と言うと思うでしょう?
  Aren't our lives adventures?

5. PSPとDSとどちらが使い安いだかい?
   Between the PSP and the DS which is easier to use?
   The DS is easier to use than the PSP.   

6.ネェネェ、 韓国の「Boys over Flowers」と言う番組についてどう思いますか?   
Hey, what do you think about the Korean "Boys Over Flowers" show?
Since the script was written well, it also makes me happy and there are lots of cute guys in it, it is an interesting show.
7. 多分パキアオとハットンの試合はパキアオが勝つと思うよ.
  I suppose that Pacqiao will win in his fight with Hatton.

8. そう思います。
  I think so too.

9. そう思いません。
   I don't think so.

Numbers 8 and 9 are important because I had formed a bad habit of saying そうだと思う which is basically wrong when I did self study.