= Kyou no sensei boku demo ii ?
= Would it be OK if I were the teacher for today? / Do you mind if I am your teacher for today’s lesson?
Today’s guest teacher is ブンタ先生 ( = Bunta Sensei).
He is a very friendly 2 year-old boy.
Yukari met him on the street near her house and they became friends.
After hearing about our site, he volunteered to be a guest teacher.
He is fluent in Japanese so he will be a good teacher! Are we ready?
= Minasan, hajimemashite. Bunta desu. Kyou, minna ni nihongo wo oshieru koto ga dekite ureshii desu.
= Nice to meet you, everyone! I’m Bunta. It’s my pleasure to teach you all Japanese today.
Today we will learn the difference in nuance between,
★Noun + でいい ( = de ii) /でもいい ( = demo ii) and がいい ( = ga ii)
If someone asks you,
= Kyou wa dare ni nihongo wo naraitai desu ka?
= Who would you want to learn Japanese from today?
How would you answer?
= Bunta sensei de iidesu.
=I don’t mind if Bunta Sensei is the teacher.
= Bunta sensei ga iidesu.
= I want Bunta Sensei to teach us Japanese.
If I hear you say,
= Bunta sensei de iidesu.
I would feel a bit hurt because で ( = de) has a nuance of compromising so it sounds like I may not be the perfect teacher but there is no choice so you have to accept me as a teacher.
But if you say,
= Bunta sensei ga iidesu.
using が ( = ga), I feel flattered because you choose me over everybody else to be your teacher.
Note : If you say でも ( = demo) instead of で ( = de)
= Bunta sensei demo iidesu.
It adds the feeling of “even Bunta Sensei”
When you express what you want, you use both ~がいい ( = ga ii) and ~でいい(=deii).
While が ( = ga) shows a strong preference/desire, で ( = de) shows your feeling of compromising or gives a sense of looking down on someone/something. So you have to be very careful when to use them and which one to use.
I know it is just one letter but it changes the nuance completely.
= Kore ga iidesu.
= I want THIS ONE!
= Kore de iidesu.
= This one will do. (compromising)
= Kore demo iidesu.
= I will be fine even with this one.
Q : 何が飲みたいですか？
= Nani ga nomitai desuka?
= What would you like to drink?
= Biiru ga iidesu.
= I’d like to have a beer. (Not anything else)
= Biiru de iidesu.
= A beer is just fine. (A beer will do.)
= Biiru demo iidesu.
= I will be fine even with a beer.
= Nani wo nomu? Mizu de ii?
= What do you want to drink? Will (just) water be OK with you?
= Un, mizu de iiyo.
= Yeah, water is just fine with me. (Don’t trouble yourself .)
= Un, mizu demo iiyo.
= Yeah, even just water is fine with me.
= Koora ga ii!
= I want a Coke!
Note: What to do / Which one to use….
So で ( = de) or でも ( = demo) may offend someone’s feeling because it sounds compromising. But が ( = ga) expresses your desire straight forward, and remember that Japanese people sometimes prefer to avoid straightforward expressions.
If someone asks you what you would like to drink or eat, the safest answer is
= Omizu (wo) onegai shimasu.
= Then I’d like to have some water, please.
= Sorede wa omizu (wo) itadakemasu ka?
= Then, may I have some water please?
= Omizu (wo) kudasai.
= Please give me some water. (Water, please.)
Note : Though your Japanese teachers would probably frown on my teaching this, but the truth is we often omit particles in conversation.
When you say を ( = wo) , an object marker, you ask for something, in this case a glass of water, a little bit more clearly.
= Omizu choudai.
= Give me some water.
When you want to express your preference in a strong way, you use がいい ( = ga ii) and when you make it sound softer you use でいい ( = de ii).
Though as I said, when you answer using でいい ( = de ii) you are including a nuance of compromise and that may annoy the person who offered you something.
= Yuushoku wa suteiki ga iina.
= I wanna a steak for dinner.
= Eh? Okane naino? Jaa, tori no karaage de (demo) iiyo.
= What? You don’t have money? Then, fried chicken is just fine.
When you emphasize the meaning of “even” you use でも ( = demo)
= Madogawa no seki ga iidesu.
= I prefer a window seat.
(expressing your desire straightforward)
= Moushiwake arimasen ga, madogawa no oseki wa mou ippai desu.
= We are very sorry but all the window seats are already booked up.
= Jaa tsuuro gawa no seki de iidesu.
= Then, an aisle seat is fine.
= Natsuyasumi, dokoni iku? Kaigai ni iku?
=Where should we go for summer vacation? Shall we go abroad?
= Kotoshi wa kokunai de iiyo.
= Somewhere in Japan is just fine this year.
= Watashi wa Italia ga ii!
= I want to go to Italy!
= Kyou wa tsukarete iru kara yuugohan wa konbini no onigiri de ii?
= I am tired today so do you mind if we just to eat rice balls from the convenience store?
= Ehh! Karee ga ii!
= Oh no… I want CURRY!!
= Bunta, daisuki!
= I love you, Bunta!
= Hontou ni boku de(mo) iino?
= You like ME? (Really? You really like a dog like me? )
= Mochiron! Bunta ga iino!
= I mean it! I like YOU, Bunta!
Noun + でなくてもいい ( = de nakutemo ii) / じゃなくてもいい ( = janakutemo ii)
It doesn’t have to be ~
= Biiru ja nakute mo iiyo.
= It doesn’t have to be beer.
= Sono hoteru de (wa) nakutemo ii desu.
= It doesn’t have to be that hotel.
= Mina wa Maggie sensei ga ii?
= You prefer (to learn Japanese from) Maggie Sensei?
マギー先生より = Maggie Sensei yori = From Maggie Sensei
=Bunta sensei arigatou!
= Thank you, Bunta sensei!
= Bunta Sensei wa wakai onnanoko ga suki?
= Do you prefer young girls, Bunta-Sensei?
= Soretomo watashi no youna jukujo demo ii?
= Or is a “mature” woman like me OK?
= Bunta: “Maggie Sensei demo ii desu.”
= Bunta: “I would be OK even with you, Maggie Sensei.