What is "Japan-easy"?

Explore the wonders of Japan and the Japanese language!

Over the course of 24 episodes that cover useful and basic conversations, viewers will navigate from everyday Japanese life to what’s new in Japan, and see that “Japanese is easy!”

Furthermore, viewers will experience the fun world of Japanese through use of various approaches such as “Kanji-easy,” where kanji characters are easily learned through their shapes and ideas, and “Phrase-easy,” which offers useful phrases.

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#21

The formal and casual forms of verbs. Explore the wonders of Japan and the Japanese language! Through basic conversations, viewers will see that "Japanese is easy!"

#20

Key phrase: ~masenka?

1. ~masenka?

Comments

Today, let's learn how to use “masenka” to make a proposition to someone.
First, check out the conversation where colleagues propose ideas about what to eat. Try to pay attention to what the people are saying

Joel: “Minna de shokuji ni ikimasenka?”

Now let's focus on the form “ikimasenka.”
The original form of this verb is “ikimasu.”
The negative form of this is “ikimasen.”
Add “ka” to this to get the question form “ikimasenka.”
As seen here, combining the negative and question form of a verb gives you the expression for proposing an idea. It's similar to the English phrase "Why don't we..."
Now let's see what else the people were saying.

2. Tango-easy!

Comments

Tango means "word."
We'll go out into the city and look for various words.

Today, we've come to Akihabara in Tokyo. What sort of tango will we find in this city famous for electronics, anime, and cosplay?

3. masenka?/mashō

Comments

Now, after everybody was proposing ideas about what to eat, let's see what they ended up doing. The three go to an izakaya, a Japanese pub, and they’re looking at the menu and thinking about what to eat. Let’s learn how to use “masenka” in the conversation where they try to decide what to order.

Joel: “Tori no karaage o tabemasenka?”
Lina: “Iidesune. Tabemashō.”

For the question “Tori no karaage o tabemasenka,” the answer was “Tabemashō.”
To answer a question ending in “masenka,” say “mashō” if you agree.
The expression “mashō” is also used to confirm agreement on the subject.
Basically, saying “sōdesune” and “shimashō” is like saying like "Yes, let's do that."

4. Phrase-easy!

Comments

You will learn useful Japanese phrases and real-life experiences relating to those phrases. On the menu today, we have the phrase “sasugadesu.”

Tea Break

Daigakuimo

Chunks of sweet potato are deep-fried and served with a sweet sauce and black sesame seeds. The name literally means “university potato,” and was named so since it was popular with college students around the Kanda area in Tokyo back in the 1920s and 30s. There is also a theory saying that the name came from University of Tokyo students selling the snack in order to pay for tuition. Daigakuimo is easy to make at home and very nutritious, so this sweet and filling dish makes for a popular snack.

Exercises on the Net #20

Question 1

Instruction: Change the following Japanese sentences to A. negative ones and then B. proposal ones.

  • 1
  • スーパーsūpāeいきますikimasu

    (sūpā e ikimasu)

    I go to the supermarket.

    negative:

    スーパーsūpāeいきませんikimasen

    (sūpā e ikimasen)

    I don’t go to the supermarket.

    proposal:

    スーパーsūpāeいきませんikimasenka

    (sūpā e ikimasen ka)

    Why don’t you go to the supermarket.

  • 2
  • ラーメンrāmenoたべますtabemasu

    (rāmen o tabemasu)

    I eat ramen.

    negative:

    ラーメンrāmenoたべませんtabemasen

    (rāmen o tabemasen)

    I don’t eat ramen.

    proposal:

    ラーメンrāmenoたべませんtabemasenka

    (rāmen o tabemasen ka)

    Why don’t you eat ramen?

    Question 2

    Instruction: Respond to the following proposal sentences with yes or no.

  • ex.
  • いざかやizakayaeいきませんikimasenka → Yes

    (izakaya e ikimasen ka)

    Why don’t you go to izakaya?

    いきましょうikimashō

    (ikimashō)

    Yes, let's.

  • 1
  • イタリアitariaりょうりryōrioたべませんtabemasenka → Yes

    (itaria ryōri o tabemasen ka)

    Why don't you eat Italian cuisine?

    たべましょうtabemashō

    (tabemashō)

    Yes, let's.

  • 2
  • イギリスigirisuりょうりryōrioたべませんtabemasenka → No

    (igirisu ryōri o tabemasen ka)

    Why don't you eat British cuisine?

    イギリスigirisuりょうりryōriwaちょっとchotto...

    (igirisu ryōri wa chotto...)

    Well, no, let's not.

    Hiragana, Katakana, and Kanji

    There are three kinds of letters in Japan, and a combination of the three creates meanings. You can find lots of letters around the city, so try and search for them. Hiragana and katakana are syllabaries, where one character represents a syllable.

    Read More