What do you mean?

Good morning everyone,

Did you enjoy that rainy day yesterday? Actually, after predicting a day of rain, I was a bit worried in the morning because the sun was still shining around 11am. However, shortly after that the rain clouds rolled in and didn't stop raining till around 9:30pm. And it felt cold! But I think all rainy days feel cold...anyway, today won't be any warmer, but hopefully it'll feel warmer because of the nice sunny weather! In fact, these temperatures and mostly sunny skies will last until the middle of next week...

Oh! If anyone is bored, why don't you come to Kuga on Sunday and cheer me on! I haven't been training much recently, so I'll need all of the support I can get! ha ha!

There are countless reasons why I hate katakana (and I few why I like it), but one of them is the way that English words are used. I don't mind if English words are shortened, like shortening 'sandwich' to 'sando' or 'personal computer' to 'pasocon'. It's kind of convenient to do that for Japanese speakers. And I don't even mind when the actual meaning has very little or nothing to do with the English word such as 'consento' to mean 'outlet' or 'range' to mean 'microwave'.

The one I have a problem with is when the word is used basically the same way in Japanese as it is in English but with a different nuance. The two that come to mind are 'sexual harassment' and 'stalker'. They mean basically the same in both languages, but the way they are used here is so different from back home that it often confuses me.

First of all, Japanese language/culture overuses 'sexual harassment' and sometimes uses it as 'joke'. For us 'sexual harassment' is a very, very serious accusation and should never be used lightly or jokingly. Do you remember a few years ago when there was a picture of a bare-chested man on an ad on the train and JR decided to take it down because some women claimed it was 'sexual harassment'? Well, that was very strange for us. You can't 'harass' someone with an ad-it can be found distasteful or sexist, but not harassing. It's a good thing Russian President Putin doesn't come here often, he always has his shirt off! ha ha!

And there were two times when a Japanese person threw that word out at me and I was so shocked in both cases! One was when we were out drinking one time and one of the women started playing a shamisen. We were talking about the difference between a guitar and a shamisen and I asked how she knew which chord she was playing and moved her fingers up and down the neck to demonstrate and somebody in the group shouted, "Sexual harassment". I know they were joking, but I was totally floored by it! It totally ruined the night for me as I couldn't recover from the shock.

The other time was when we were walking from one bar to the next and I said I had to go pee and asked if I could borrow one of the ladies' bags and another girl, said, "Sexual harassment!". Now, if that is sexual harassment to her, I don't know what her love life is like! Ha ha! There is nothing sexy about going pee...ever! Ha ha!

Whereas, for us being a 'stalker' isn't as scary as it is in Japan. I sometimes joked that a student was 'stalking' me when I saw them outside of work and they were so worried that I believed it...it took a while for me to explain that it was just a joke...

It's very difficult to use loan words correctly, isn't it?

Have a great day!

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