Category Archives: Japanese

‘ere’s a laff

See, this is why I dislike Winnipeg.

I posted the CBR600 on Kijiji yesterday.  I put an asking price of $3900, and stated that I was open to reasonable offers.  I even italicized reasonable because I know how Winnipeggers are.  I believed that this was very clear.

And just like clockwork, today, the first response I got – “$2500 right now”.  ARGH!

Attention Winnipeg lowballers (that’s the whole town, more or less): first, you will be mocked mercilessly; next,  you will be deleted.

In other news, I reviewed 508 kanji today.  85% success first time through.  Not bad, not good enough.  Regardless it’s high time to add more.  1500-odd to go, after all.

Also the Dakota (a.k.a. wretched steaming pile of money pit) is in the shop again.  Also it’s rusting fast (had no rust at all in fall).  Anyone want to buy a really nice truck?  I’ll give you a good deal!

Also I was kinda on a Card Captor Sakura bender today.  It’s a bit like eating a whole bag of truffles at once.  I feel vaguely ill now so I shall go to bed and have cute dreams.

what are your japanese goals this year?

This is a typical new year’s post, typically late.

I was thinking of this issue a few days ago in an attempt to provide a little guidance to my efforts.  Wandering is perfectly fine mind you; constant contact, as Khatzumoto says, is more important than regimented progress.  Too much of that though and I end up just watching anime and calling it study!

So with Japanese, unlike most languages where your two fields of study are essentially the grammar and vocabulary, you have an additional field in the kanji.  Truth be told, I find it almost a little puzzling how for some people the kanji are a dreaded obstacle more than anything else.  In fact I suspect if it weren’t for the kanji I’d probably have picked a different language.  I find them utterly fascinating.

At the same time, they are just as much of a challenge as you’d think.  In essence, it’s as if you were going to a school or a workplace with 2000 colleagues and had to remember each of their faces and first and last names.

1) So for this year, I intend to go through Heisig with my trusty Kanji LS Touch loaded up and memorize the writings and meanings of all the general use kanji.  I’d also like to get a start on the readings, but most of that will probably come from –

2) the vocabulary, in which I would like to master the 3700-odd words from what used to be the JLPT 2.  I can see already that that’s going to require a fair bit of SRS work with sentences/phrases in addition to the regular use of Japanese Flip which I’ve been doing up till now.  Then,

3) in terms of grammar I don’t really have a set goal as such, other than I do want to finish my Japanese For Everyone text, which ought to take me to the point that I can hold a reasonable conversation.

Looking at it laid out like that and comparing it to my achievements up till now, this does look awfully optimistic.  However I am definitely much more seriously into Japanese study now since late last year than I’ve ever been before.  So while this represents what I would like to accomplish, it is certainly more of a direction than a destination.  The important thing is simply to stick with it every single day.

I guess you could say that about pretty much anything you’d like to achieve.

So if you’re studying Japanese as well, where do you see yourself at the end of the year?

RTK list for Kanji LS

Balancing my interest in the kanji etymology with my desire to learn them as fast as possible, I finally broke down and ordered Heisig’s Remembering the Kanji, like everyone else already has.  I still want to study Henshall’s book but I’ll do that afterwards as it will make an excellent introduction to etymology study; it will do that a fair bit better than it will help learn them in the first place, I think.

Naturally the first thing I did was try to find a pre-compiled list that I could import in order to study the kanji in Kanji LS in the same order as the book.  Despite the long odds of this, someone has in fact already done this 🙂  So thanks to user “exxel” on the Reviewing the Kanji forum for his excellent work.  Download the list here.

Incidentally, exxel has intelligently put the whole list in one file, using the range selection capability of Kanji LS; I should’ve done the same thing but never thought of it.  If I am very bored one day I’ll redo my lists into one.

GRJC files for Kanji LS Touch

Bit of a specialized interest here.  This is for people who are learning kanji using Kanji LS Touch and who would like to follow the order in the excellent text, A Guide to Remembering Japanese Characters by Kenneth G. Henshall.

With the new functionality in Kanji LS Touch that allows you to import your own sets of kanji, this becomes possible.  But it’s still a lot of work to get that many kanji in a row.  I’ve now done this for you, dividing the book into sets of 34 characters (yes, this is the same set size that KingKanji uses; this is not a coincidence 😉 ).  These files can be found at

I hope this is useful to at least one other person!