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Friday, July 13, 2012

Essential Phrases and Body Language #5

Gesture #5: Catching someone's attention/かたたた

Actual Gesture: Tapping someone 2-3 times on the shoulder while you're behind them

It's Function?: To get a moment of their time and tell/show them something, whether it's letting them they dropped something, pointing something out to them that might be interest or even just to start a conversation

Any Associated Phrase?: No, but one I recommend is 「失礼しつれいしますが」, or something similar in intent

Anything else?: If you're feeling joke-y, you can bust out the old gag of sticking out your pointer finger while they turn to you; if they get/are in on it, you might get a 「いたっ!(Ouch!)」 out of it, but it's more likely something worse will come of it, so bust it out with caution. Another thing to take note of is an association it carries in professional climates, where it's followed up by getting canned

Phrase #5: 大変たいへんです
Literal Meaning: It's awful
Intent: This is horrible
1. To point out that something is an emergency/the stuff has hit the fan(like the phrase 'This is serious!'),
2. To show that something is a shocking situation(like when you hear your best friend is about to try mountain road drifting just after learning how to drive, and the first thought that crosses your mind is 'This is serious'),
3. When people are in tight spots(like when your friend says they had to write up and get an A on a 10 page paper by the next day, or they wouldn't be passing the class, and you tell 'em "That's tough")
4. To show sympathy for people going through rough patches(like when that same friend missed the passing mark by 1 point because of 1 typo, and you tell them "That's rough")
Notes: 大変, itself, is a な adjective carrying the connotations and usage in the contexts seen above(plus one more: pointing out there's a lot of whatever it's in front of)
Example: (expressing something's an emergency) 大変じゃねぇさ。デートだけで、ゆっくりしてね。心臓発作しんぞうほっさこってねぇ。
(This thing ain't serious, man. You're just going on a date, so slow your role and breathe. You're not exactly having a heart attack, now)
(a shocking situation) 大変だ!くまとおりをとおってますよ!
Oh my word, there's a bear walking down the street right now!
(when something gets serious) ’「結婚けっこんしましょうか?」って!?大変でしょう。
Did he really say “Will you marry me”!? This just got real.
(showing sympathy)「赤点あかてん」って? しまったね。 大変だよ。 おい、MOS Burgerにおうぞ。 持て成してくれ。
(You got failing marks? Oh crap, man. Sucks for you. Yo, let's meet up over at the MOS Burger, my treat)

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