YouTube channel “WhiteEnglishGirl” posted video.
Japanese people have the ability to customize English words
English is spoken all over the world, right? If your country’s official language is not English, but there are an information board in English and travel guide used English.
Since Japan has deep ties with the United States and the United Kingdom so Japanese often see English in Japan even can’t use English. However, Japanese people don’t know English that’s why they sometimes use English words that are different from native original meanings.
Japanese says their 『和製英語(Wasei–eigo)』. I like baseball so let’s use that as an example.
Night game, meaning is “Baseball game played at night time” isn’t it? but Japanese says it [ Nighter ]. What are you imaging from this word? A night man? I don’t know why said in Japan.
Japanese baseball was introduced from US. Therefore, Japanese baseball terms also introduced from US, but many words is changed in Japan.
※ maybe that “gróund → gro → goro”
→ Touch out
→ Next batter’s circle
・batter’s eye screen
→ Back screen
→ Get two
In addition, there are various baseball terms in Japan.
Others baseball terms in Japanese is “Click here“(Japanese)
Original English words created by the Japanese
Japanese people is not only created original English in baseball, but also born many Wasei-eigo in all kinds of fields. Let’s show you a some example.
A set of bathtub and toilet. That is called “Bathroom“ right? but Japanese called it [ Unit bath ]. What kind of strategy will they start?
By the way, what a rest room is to you, is a toilet to Japanese. I don’t know how rest in toilet… At, indeed “THE MOMENT” you feel that definitely blissful.
Even if you are rich enough and live a [ Mansion ], I don’t recommend to say “I live in a mansion” in Japan. That word is apartment to Japanese.
It’s have high hierarchy, elevator, and more expensive than what Japanese people calls an “apartment“.
Japanese calls apartment “apart”. that is few hierarchy, no elevator, and more cheap than what Japanese people calls a “mansion“. I don’t know why Japanese started calling it that.
Japan is famous as a country that doesn’t change its laws. Provided that Japanese often say it at home renovation. If you decided live in Japan, let’s [ Reform ] your house all by means.
In addition, renovation is sometime used nowadays. In Japan, renovation refers to a scale that with construction work, reform refers to smaller scale than renovation.
You call it a “Laptop”, Japanese called it [ Note PC ]. By the way, personal computers are also omit as ” Paso-con “.
I’m writing a blog for Note PC. More strange is that we call it “no-paso” for short. It’s true. If you doubt, ask your Japanese friends.
You apply lip balm when your lips are dry, isn’t it? Oh wait a bit, Japanese call lip balm [ Lip cream ] or [ Lip stick ]. Don’t get wrong, Japanese doesn’t people who apply lipstick when lip are dry.
If you are a woman, be careful when ordering lipstick at a Japanese store. When you get feel anxious there, you should say “Kuchi-bei wo kudasai(I want to buy lipstick)”.
Bread you love it is called [ Pan ] in Japan. Don’t be frying pan. It’s comes from the Portuguese word [ Pão ].
Bread is one of the most older cooking for human, and now, Japan has many kind of bakery shop. That’s as delicious as European bread so I recommend you to eat Japanese “Pan”.
Carbohydrate content in food are important for you who are health conscious. In Japan called [ Non sugar ] that under 0.5g of 100g carbohydrate foods. Also, they called [ 糖質オフ(Off sugar) ] that are relatively low in carbhydrate foods.
“less” is not very familiar to Japanese and “free” is imaged freedom. I’d rather it we use more easier to understand negative words [ non/none ]. It’s can use same way [ Non alcohol ].
It’s so surprise word to animal welfare organizations, although Japanese say [ Pet bottle ] to plastic bottle. Pet is omission of “PolyEthylene Terephthalate”.
And so on plastic bag is called [ ビニール袋(Vinyl bag) ]. For few years ago, Japan government decide impose a cost to Vinyl gab because for environmental protection. I don’t know how much effect for environment…
There are easy and cheap breakfast at coffee shop, restaurant, hotel and more when a morning. This is call [ Morning service ] in Japan. Not the time to pray in church.
I guess that morning service has a more feeling “morning meal time” than breakfast special for Japanese. Sence Japan hasn’t christianity culture, no one is confused these. By the way, in Japan, a coffee shop is called [ Cafe ].
I haven’t been to ride a bike ―― Oh, please don’t misunderstanding. In Japan, motorbike is [ Bike ]. There is Japanese 『自転車(Jitensha)』 as a bike.
Since there are many people driving car in Japan, there are also many motorbikes. Do you think all Japanese cars have high performance? I think too.
Do you often go to amusement park? There are many fascinating attraction and I like [ Jet coaster ] especially. You should be forget this word roller because Japanese coaster it so fast.
You’ll love Japanese “jet“ coasters. I don’t think many foreigners know this, but my hometown 『栃木県(Tochigi Prefecture)』 has [ nasu highland park ] that has 8 kinds of jet coaster.
Plus / Minus driver
Screwdriver needed to turn screws. In Japan, it’s called [ Plus/Minus driver ] because of its shape. I think you understanding without explanation.
I’d like to ask the opposite why you call that Phillips/Slotted screwdriver? Plus/Minus are more more more easier to understand than P/S right?
Japanese pseudo Anglicism
Japan have loads of Wasei-eigo = Japanglish. Unfortunately to who studying Japanese, we further omitted Japanglish.
Laptop → Note Personal computer
Office worker → Salary-man
part-time worker → Freelance arbeiter
※ arbeiter is German language
Microwave → Electronic range
mechanical pencil → Sharp pencil
Japan is an island nation and is also to embrace cultures from overseas well, but sometimes it produces English that native speakers cannot understand. Well, it’s like the [ Senpai ] you lots use.
It’s same “English” but don’t same “English”. I hope you enjoy and so carefully about those words when you visited Japan and take communication gap with local friends.