Maggie’s Room (New)

スクリーンショット 2013-06-19 1.06.47

Hi everyone! Thank you for visiting Maggie’s room. (I reopened this room on Sept. 14th, 2018.)

Feel free to leave any message. I will try to answer your questions here. But please make it simple. I can handle one or two questions. (If they are not too complicated..) 

I love you all but please understand that  I don’t translate or dictate lyrics, your personal letters, messages or help your homework here. Hope you don’t take it personally. Though I’d like to help everyone, if  I do for one person, which means I have to do for thousands of people everyday. Thank you for understanding. ありがとう!


  1. hi Maggie sensei, forgive my ignorance
    But I would like a clarification on a sentence … I have the translation, but I can not understand how it could mean this
    The phrase “いつも嵐の後の私の虹でいてくれてありがとう” google me translates it as “Thak you for always being my rainbow after the storm”
    but I do not understand … where is the verb to be? and the “で” here exactly what function does it play? I knew the various uses, but here escapes me

    the rest of the sentence I had understood, but these are 2 things that I’m not clear (the function of “で” here, and the verb to be)

    ps. if I made any mistake even to write in English, I apologize, but I’m Italian

    1. Hi Lucia,

      Google translation is not bad after all, huh? 😉

      As you probably know when you say “Thank you for doing something”, you say
      Verbて+ くれてありがとう。
      In this case the verb is いる = to be and its te-form is いて

      いてくれてありがとう = Thank you for being
      So that is your first question.

      As for your 2nd question,
      This で might be easier for you to think “as”
      (私の虹)でいる = to be as (my rainbow)

      Now で in this sentence means “as”

      ~でいてくれてありがとう = Thank you for being as ~

      →私の虹でいてくれてありがとう= Thank you for being as my rainbow.

  2. Good day dear Maggie sensei,

    I don’t know if this is a valid request/question, but it’s just that I am unable to find an English explanation for the phrases below:

    お友達などお誘いのうえ – I think I can understand “お友達などお誘い” but I have no idea what “のうえ” could mean . Could it be “upper part” upper part of inviting a friend?

    笑かしてくれます – I think I can understand “てくれます” part but not “笑かし” (it is not listed in the dictionary that I use)

    ここぞとばかりに – I have no idea at all T_T

    Thank you so much in advance dear Maggie sensei… just in case a context is needed, I will search for the link of the said blog updates…

    1. Hello!!

      I’ve been thinking about making a lesson on 上

      This うえ means “to do something and ~~”

      verb した上で ~ : ~ after you do something
      (I will think about it carefully and will get back to you)
      → I will get back to you after careful consideration

      noun + の+ うえ :after doing something
      = Come over with your friend.(→Invite your friend and come over)
      →(polite) お友達もお誘いしていらしてください。
      noun form of お誘いする→お誘い

      笑かす is Kansai dialect of 笑わせる= to make someone laugh
      笑わせてくれる Someone makes us laugh (for our favor) → Kansai dialect 笑かしてくれる

      ここぞとばかりに is an expression and it means 絶好の機会ととらえる = (zekkou no kikai to toraeru) “taking advantage of the opportunity”

  3. HiMaggie-sensei, I’ve been a follower of yours for some time now and have learned a lot.あなたのレッスンは本当に素晴らしいです! I can tell how busy you are so I hope this isn’t ill-received (or if I am asking in the wrong spot), but was wondering if you offer any type of private tutoring or lessons? いつもお世話になっております

    1. Hi Jesse
      Thank you for your comment.
      I am a doggie angel so that I can’t give you a class but Yukari gives a Skype lesson when she has time.
      If you are interested in the class, contact us through About Us page. :)

  4. Hello sensei
    hope you are well
    I have some question


    In this sentence, what i find confusing is whether. the customer is happy or not. there is a repetition of ない but i doubt to decide this pattern.

    please help me sensei
    thank you very much

    1. Hi bryan
      I think を is missing in the first part


      Ah, OK, when you see
      the writer assumes(or believes) what comes before, in this case 楽しいという人はあまりいない ( = There are not many people who enjoy souvenir shops for tourists.)
      I assume there are not many people who enjoy souvenir shops for tourists.)

      Ex. もう彼は行ってしまったのではないだろうか。
      So what the writer assumes here is what comes before ないだろうか so ”彼は行ってしまった = He has gone”.

      Ex. 彼は今、家にいないのではないだろうか。
      What the writer assume is 彼は今、家にいない(=He is not home at the moment)

      Hope this pattern helps you understand better.

      1. Oh i see sensei.

        I usually mixed up with positive pattern.
        Like double “nai” usage but resulting a positive action.
        ”ない” + ”ない” = positive
        like –>
        (This means like “you must hurry” right? instead of “you musn’t hurry”)
        Some pattern got mixed up here.
        I have saw your “nai” “nai” lesson but in this test it becomes confusing to decide for me.

        thank you for your help

  5. Hello, Maggie Sensei!

    I have a question about a sentence I saw while reading some news:


    After 広げる there’s a と particle and I cannot understand why it’s there. Can you explain it to me?

    Thanks in advance! ;)

      1. Thank you!

        I’m aware of this use of と, but this sentence looked out of place to me. After giving it another look, I think 広げる’s subject is 折り畳み式のスマートフォン which comes after. That’s what was confusing me.

        1. Not the subject
          広げる (= to open something) is a transitive verb (広がる is intransitive verb)

          The object of the verb 広げる is a fordable smartphone.
          If you open the fordable smartphone, you can use it as a tablet-type device.

  6. hello maggie sensei.

    nice to meet you again

    I have some questions

    1 〆切 in this shimekiri kanji.
    does 〆 normally used in reading.
    because i only found the word only in ”shimekiri” usage

    2 how do i differ the usage of “warini” and “kuseni”
    for example
    which one i use?

    1. Hi bryan,
      1. You can write 締め切り・締切・〆切
      You are right. You don’t see it so much.
      Other than shimekiri, you may see 締め鯖・〆鯖(サバ・さば) pickled mackerel in the menu in sushi restaurant.
      Also you write 〆 when you seal an envelope.

      2. たくさん食べているわりに全然太らない・

      they both work. ~ わりに means “considering (the fact that ~) / くせに means “even though / Although ”
      Also くせに involves the speaker’s feelings more. (In this case, “Although she eats a lot, she doesn’t gain weight. It is not fair!)

  7. Hi Maggie-sensei!

    I’m thinking about the difference between these two sentences:
    先生のコップは白ですか?<- so here, the white is a verb
    先生のコップは白いですか? <- while here is an adjective

    I can't really tell the difference because I think both translates to "is the teacher's cup white?" Could you please help me?

    1. Hi Jessie,

      白 = color white (noun)
      白い= white (adjective)

      Not big difference.
      白ですか→Is the color of cup white?
      白いですか→Is the cup white?

  8. Hi, Maggie sensei! I would like a clarification on the use of a word

    in an anime there was the phrase “hoshizora no moto”, translated as “under the starry sky”
    But I was not aware that the word “moto” also meant “under” … what exactly are all the uses of the word “moto”?

    ps. can I ask another favor?
    Exactly “Boku de aru tame” what does this mean? “to be with me” or does it have another meaning?

    1. 星の下(もと)
      You use this “もと” in the meaning of “under/under control/ near”
      When you just talking about the place, you use 下 した (under the table = 机の下)
      星の下 The image-wise, you are surrounded/protected by the stars.(It is also used as a metaphor, under some destiny)

      Other examples of もと
      親の下(おやのもと)で生活する = to live near one’s parents.
      法の下 = ほうのもと= under law (under control of law)

      僕であるため = to be myself

      1. Thank you so much ^_^

        I’m sorry if I still take advantage of your kindness, but I have another doubt that I would like to understand. That is the use of “to shite”.

        I have noticed that it can also mean “how”, but then what exactly is the difference between “youni / youna” and “to shite”?

        1. として has a various functions
          1) as ~ Ex. 彼はセールスマンとしてあの会社で働いている。= He is working for the company as a sales person.
          2) concluding the fact., etc.
          I think what you get confused with ように is

          3) Verb volitional form + として+ verb past tense= did something trying to do/intending to do something
          Am I right?

          As I explained in my よう lesson?
          ように has a usage “to do something “in order to do something”

          The difference is ように is used when you do something in order (not) to do something but that usage of として is used when you were going to do something but you didn’t.

          Ex. 雨に濡れないように傘を持っていく。
          = I am going to take an umbrella with me so that I won’t get wet.

          Ex. Aは、会社に行こうとしていたが気分が悪くなって帰ってきた。
          = A left the house (trying to go to work) but felt sick and came back home.

  9. hello sensei.

    in this

    what is 各住棟 (かくじゅうむね)

  10. Hi Maggie sensei ^ – ^
    I would like clarification on verbs,please. There is one thing I have never understood, namely the conjugation that ends in “iru”. What is the difference, for example, between “sagashiteru” and “sagashiteiru” or “shinjiteru” and “shinjiteiru”, “matteru” and “matteiru” etc. ?

    1. Hi Lucy

      Ah, OK, they mean the same.
      In casual Japanese you drop “i”.
      書いている= kaite iru = to be writing →書いてる=kaiteru
      食べている= tabete iru = to be eating →食べてる= tabeteru

      I mentioned in my iru-lesson →Click here. (Note 1)

  11. Hello maggie sensei.
    Glad to see you again.
    Right now I’m struggling on my JLPT test on december.
    So I am sorry if I bother you this whole month >.<

    問題 1 :

    In the second sentences there is ノリ what is this??

    問題2 :

    In the last sentences there is どうにもはっきりしてない気がする what is this??


    1. Hello

      1) ノリ is to do something just for fun without thinking about too much. I have a lesson if you want to know more. Click here.

      2) どうも means “somehow”/”for some reason”
      はっきりしてない→はっきりしていない not clear
      I feel like this information is not clear for some reason.


  12. Hy Sensei!

    忝い, can i use this in a casual conversation? Or its sounds too polite?
    Do you have any lesson about the なさい?

    Thank you for your time, Sensei. :)

    1. かたじけない?
      You must have seen the expression in anime or game.
      It is an old samurai expression. So you will never use it in conversation unless you say that jokingly to surprise your Japanese friend. 😉
      As for nasai, I don’t have a lesson but it is not difficult.
      You use Vなさい form when you order someone to do something (Like parents tell their children to do (or not to do something))

      食べなさい Eat!
      宿題しなさい。 Do your homework!

  13. Hello Maggie Sensei ^-^
    I’m an Italian girl, it’s the first time I write, but I’ve been following you for a few months because your lessons are the best <3
    Can I ask for a little help? I'm translating a song, but I'm stuck and I can not figure out how to translate this sentence

    そっとつなぐ指先で会話しているのが 分かるそっぽ向いているけれど握り返す指の想い背の高い 横顔を見上げふいに胸が痛くなる

    1. if I do not disturb too much, I also need help for this phrase😟 (it confused my ideas、the various words I do not understand how to combine them and make them meaningful)

      見つめることも無くなり繰り返す日々が 怖くなることに気づいていたの悲しいほど

      1. If you change the word order, it may be easier to understand.

        見つめることも無くなり →this person stops looking at someone anymore / or they (a couple) stop looking at each other.
        悲しいほど = painfully
        (1)が(2) に気づいていた = To have noticed that (1) is painfully* (2)

    2. Hi Lucia,

      Thank you for visiting here. Sorry. I have told many people who visit here that I don’t do the translation here.
      But I can help you understand the sentence structure/the meaning of words just for today. :)

      Sentence structure
      ~(1)~ で〜(2)~ が分かる = I can tell (2) by (1)

      そっと secretly/gently
      つなぐ hold
      指先 fingertip
      会話する to have a conversation (Of course you don’t actually have a conversation with your fingers but it is a poetic expression)

      ~1~ けれど〜2~ Though 1, 2
      そっぽ向く looking away
      握り返す hold back
      指の想い ”the feelings of fingers” another poetic expression (it refers to one’s loving feelings that you can feel by touching fingers)

      ~を見上げ = looking up
      横顔 his profile (背の高い means the person who you look up the profile is “tall”)
      ふいに suddenly
      胸が痛くなる my heart aches

  14. Hello sensei Good afternoon,
    Hope you are well

    I have some question,

    1. 私の足元から、今さらのようにぞわりとしたものが込み上げる
    What is ぞわりと
    (I wonder if this is an adverb but I can not find it anywhere in internet)

    2. その辺の草もしって食べて気持ち悪くなっただよね

    In those 2 sentences why 草も (end with shite?) also 道具の名前から (end with shite?)

    Thank you very much

    1. Hi there,
      1. ぞわりとしたもの means something creepy. Like when you feel ghost or some creepy creature, you feel ぞわり

      2. I think the first line has some mistakes. Can you check it again?

      1. I have checked it sensei.

        This is a phrase which I got from anime text.
        If you think it is wrong so the fault is on scanlation team. I believe you in most case.

        this その辺の草もしって食べて気持ち悪くなっただよね
        is when a person running away from home together with her sister and she accidentally eat grass and feel sick.

        then about 稲刈りや果物狩りの道具の名前からして覚えるのに苦労した
        how it end up using 名前からして?

        1. I think it says something like
          その辺の草もしって食べて気持ち悪くなっただよね should be その辺の草をむしって食べて気持ち悪くなってんだよね。or なってよね (depending on the context)

          からして means judging from ~ but in this case giving some examples of how hard it was to remember things.
          Even the names of the tools (for 稲刈り and 果物狩り) were hard to remember.

  15. Hello Maggie Sensei,

    I could use your help again. I’ve been translating an interview and was unsure about this paragraph.


    Here’s my translation:

    The feeling that I was doing this for the first time was at the bottom of my heart.
    It was the opposite of making something on my own. I listened to everyone’s opinion, and decided it wouldn’t be any good if I did it alone. So it was fun because it was the first time.

    Here’s some context:

    This is from an interview with a member of an Idol group. She is releasing her first solo single. It’s a more professional recording of a demo she made herself yrs. ago. With this recording, she asked a producer for his help to record the instruments.

    What’s confusing me the most is the second sentence, particularly:


    It either says “I had to do it myself” or “It wouldn’t be any good if I did it myself”. Based on the context and since she’s working with a producer, the second translation makes more sense, but I’m still not sure.

    Thank you.

    1. Hello, I can’t check all your translation here but でも1人でやらなきゃダメだと思った。 meansI thought I had do it myself.

      1人でやらなきゃだめ = the literal meaning is “It is no good if I don’t do it myself.” → I have to do it myself.

      1. Thanks for your help! So it really was “I had to do it myself”.

        I tried to use spoilers to make my post smaller, but I guess they don’t work here.

      2. Mayumi-Sensei,

        I didn’t see that you also translated one of the other sentences. I can’t reply to that post, so I’m replying to this one again.

        I only saw the first meaning for “向き合う” which is “opposite”. “Face something” or “confront something” makes more sense. This really changes the meaning of the sentence, so I’m glad you pointed it out.

        Thanks again!

    2. Hello Dear Maggie sensei,

      If you are Okay with me helping.

      My perception when I have started the think I want to do from bottom of my heart.
      Is opposite from the things that I want to make by myself
      I have heard everybody’s opinion but, I thought that I have one thing that I must do.
      Because those matters (In above) is first time for me. It was really fun.

      For Maggie Sensei ありがとうございました

          1. Oh, I see. Sorry, I can’t tell from here that you were commenting Jili’s question. It seemed like a new comment and thought you two were asking me the same question.
            OK, you and Jili both translated 自分が作ったものに独りぼっちで向き合って、 with the word “opposite”

            向き合う is “to face something/ work through” “dealing with something”
            自分が作ったものに独りぼっちで向き合って、 means
            “Facing to / going through what you have made all by yourself.

  16. Hello sensei good to see you again.

    I am really confused to see this sentence and hope you can explain it to me.

    1. スマホの時計を何度見ても、あと50分以上も待たねばならない事実は一向に変わろうとはしなかった

    if you have a time please tell me.
    why it is 待たねばならない instead 待たなければならない
    what is 事実は一向に変わろうとはしなかった

    2. “朴槿恵前大統領の罷免を受け、2017年5月9日に投開票が行われた韓国第19代大統領選挙は。。。”

    i think the person in question is korean president. which mean he is 外国人 but why his name is written in kanji. I dont know how to read it anyway

    for these two question hopefully you can give me some explanation.


    1. Hi

      1. スマホの時計を何度見ても means “No matter how many times I check the time on the smartphone.
      待たねばならない is a formal way to say 待たなければならない

      Ex. やらねばならない→やらなければいけない
      事実は一向に変わろうとはしなかった→一向に means ちっとも・まったく (not change) at all)

      2. You write foreign names in katakana but you write Chinese and Korean’s name in kanji as well.

      1. actually i am interested in this question.
        sensei it seems that kanji of name is hard to read.
        I have been wondering what would sensei do if you want to read that kanji ?
        as for me i am on n3 level. I can’t read it at all

        1. Bryan/ナンパ男

          If you don’t know how to read someone’s name, just use Google.
          If you get a business card and can’t read the person’s name, you ask them “お名前はどうお読みしたらいいですか?”

          Besides all the common names, reading people’s name/ names of the places are hard for Japanese people,too.

  17. Hello sensei.

    can you teach me how to say

    can you take picture of us?
    can i take picture together with you?


    1. Hi,
      Can you take picture of us? = 写真を撮ってくれますか?= Shashin wo totte kuremasu ka?
      Can I take picture together with you? = 一緒に写真を撮っていいですか? = Issho ni shashin wo totte ii desu ka?

  18. Hi maggie sensei good to see you again

    please proofread below sentences

    AさんはBさんに本をあげた (right or wrong?)
    AさんはBさんに本をくれた (right or wrong?)
    What is the difference?


    (What you have to do when you want to smell ammonia?)
    (Using hand to fan it to yourself and then smell it)

    1. Hi there,
      AさんはBさんに本をあげた OK
      AさんはBさんに本をくれた It only works if B is your family. If B is the thrid person, it sounds unnatural.

      How about
      手であおぐように嗅ぎます。/手であおぐように 嗅いでください。

  19. Maggie先生! ナデナデ
    Can 同前 [ditto] be used in conversation, as in the movie “Ghost”?:
    She says: 愛してるよ (I love you)
    He says: 同前 (Ditto) – meaning “I love you too”

    それとも レストランで、ウェイトレスに:
    Aさん: カツ丼にする (I’ll have katsudon)
    Bさん: 同前 (Ditto – meaning me, too)

    1. You never say 同前 in conversation.
      I think the translation of Ditto in Ghost is “同じく = onajiku” but if you order the same thing as your friend, you say


  20. Hello Maggie Sensei



    “Like donburi and katsudon, the “don” menu are menu that is given an ingredient on the top of rice and served inside bowl, but it is not called “donburi”.


    1. Your English translation is missing 「天丼」?


      (いつもお世話になってありがとうございました→Just say いつもお世話になります。
      私は「天丼」とか「カツ丼」のように」という文章の部分に文章の部分に校正するのがちょっと間違えたと思った→「天丼」とか「カツ丼」のように」 の部分の訳がちょっと間違えていると思います。
      悪い日本語→下手な日本語 )

      1. So much mistakes I done.
        I never have any confidence in conversation.
        Thank you very much sensei.

        anyway this sentence –>

        Do this translation make sense?

        “Like tendon and katsudon, the “don” menu is the menu that is given an ingredient on the top of rice and served inside bowl, but it is not called “donburi”.

        I think i messed up in “「天丼」とか「カツ丼」のように” part

        1. 「天丼」とか「カツ丼」のように、「OOどん」というのは、丼に盛ったご飯の上に具を載せたもので丼でなく
          You don’t finish the sentence with でなく
          → 丼でなく (not donburi but/and..).
          If you finish the sentence like this, it makes sense.

  21. Hello sensei please proofread below sentence

    (To prepare special corner of lining gift)

    (Special corner of lining gift is prepared)

    Thank you before.

    1. Hi there

      (To prepare special corner of lining gift)

      The second one is OK. :)

      1. Is there any freedom to choose between using “ga” or “wo”

        sometimes I hear in random conversation in construction working place
        they would say
        instead of using 壁を壊すな

        can you explain the detail?

          1. Oh i See now,

            I mishear “wa” to “ga”

            So I must have heard 壁は壊すな back then
            Please let me ask only one more thing
            Let’s say I said
            私は走る –> it means “I run” right?
            what about
            壁は壊す –> does it still mean “I will destroy the wall”?
            or it is wrong usage after all.

            Appreciate for your answer

  22. Maggie先生! ナデナデ
    I’m having trouble understanding the nuance of “N+でいる(N)”, as in
    「ごきげんです」vs「ごきげんでいる」, or
    「~するつもりです」 vs 「~するつもりでいる」
    (I’ve inquired at other sites but of course, I can never get as good/thorough an answer as I would had I come to you first! 許してくれますか)
    I hope this is Maggie先生-worthy

    1. squidlydeux、なぜてくれてありがとう!

      ごきげんです = S is in a good mood.
      ごきでんでいる = S has been in a good mood.

      「~するつもりです」 I am going to do something.
      「~するつもりでいる」 I have been thinking about doing something.

      でいる you have been in the state/you have been thinking about doing something since a little while ago.

      I hope this is Maggie先生-worthy
      Hmm How about これはMaggie先生に聞くに値することだといいけど。

      1. So it’s similar to a continuous state like Vて+いる?
        「病気です」 = I’m sick vs 「病気でいる」= I’ve been sick ?

        So is it correct to say that it’s a current state that’s been continuing since a little while ago/for a period of time?

        Also, I was told that 「ご機嫌な人でいる」 means
        “The person is (trying to) stay to be in good mood.”
        or, 「元気で健康でいる」 “(trying to) stay fit and healthy” Is that correct – the trying to stay… part?

        1. So it’s similar to a continuous state like Vて+いる?
          「病気です」 = I’m sick vs 「病気でいる」= I’ve been sick ?

          → Yes.

          Yes, I guess you could translate it as “trying to stay~”
          but it depends on the context. You can just translate it as, to stay/keep, etc.
          →元気で健康でいることが大切です。 = It is important to stay fit and healthy.

  23. Hello sensei,

    Can you please tell me the difference between
    “koto ka” and “mono ka”
    may be with some example sentences

    Thank you very much

    1. Ex. 負けるものか Showing one’s strong will.
      See more examples and explanation in this lesson.
      Check my ものか lesson.

      You use ことか in an exclamatory sentence or emphasize one’s feelings.

      = How sleepy I was. / I was so sleepy.
      Ex. 同じことを何度彼に言ったことか。
      = How many times have I said the same thing to him.

  24. Hello sensei,

    I kind of see this on advertisement

    what is
    In the dictionary it is “Non japanese native”

    Please help me

    1. A person of “Japanese descent” as Maggie先生 stated.
      I think your dictionary should have said “a non-native Japanese” as it seems to be most often applied to people of Japanese ancestry who are not native Japanese (not born/living in Japan), such as Japanese-Americans –> 日系アメリカ人 (like me!)

  25. Hello sensei hope you are fine.

    I have a question in this below sentences.


    What is “ならぬ”

  26. Hello sensei,

    I have a question

    1. Let’s say that I want to say “because I eat fish on daily basis (everyday) I have become smart”

    2. Let’s say that I want to say “because I am now are eating fish I have become smart”
    which sentences is most appropriate to use?

    A. 魚を食べるから頭がよくになった
    B. 魚を食べたから頭がよくになった
    C. 魚を食べているから頭がよくになった
    D. 魚を食べていたから頭がよくになった

    My guess is
    1 to A
    2 to C

    please correct me if I’m wrong

    1. Hi

      First よくになった→よくなった

      1 ) 魚を毎日食べるから頭がよくなった。or 魚を食べているから頭がよくなった。
      both work.

      Sorry but I don’t quite understand your second English sentence.
      ”I am now are eating fish (→ talking about the current action) I have become smart (→describes how you have become) ”

      1. Yeah I’m sorry english is not my main language.

        I want to say.
        I am eating fish now and I can feel that my brain has became smart

        1. Hmm You are eating fish now (current situation) so I can feel that I will be smart? (talking about the future result)?
          If so 魚を食べているから頭がよくなるだろう。

  27. Hi sensei

    please see the example sentences below :


    In the last sentences why using “あろう” instead of using normal “ある”
    I thought that the 「おう」 is like 「行こう」 = “let’s go”
    does this have the same meaning???

    1. ~(で)あろう is a literal expression of だろう
      無理なのだろう *(This だろう is for assuming)
      →more literal 無理なのであろう

  28. Hello sensei,

    It seems that there’s a slight difference between the usage of
    1. mitai
    2. -ppoi
    3. teki (na)
    4. -rashii
    5. – gimi

    If you would. Please can you explain it to me. I prefer to know it by example sentences. Thank you very much

      1. Sorry, I mean you have 2 different lesson
        First about -Ppoi usage that cover (mitai, -ppoi, -rashii, -gimi)
        Second about -teki usage

        but it is not clearly stated about the difference between the usage in first lesson and second lesson.

        May be you could tell me shortly about the difference or may be it can be used interchangeably so it only has a slight difference. Why bother to differentiate it anyway?

        Thank you for your best effort.

        1. Sorry I can’t explain the whole difference with example sentences here. It is going to be long and this comment section is very limited. It will be the best to check each lesson or of course other great sites to understand well.

          But just a little, as I already I explained the difference mitai/rashii/ppoi in my mitai lesson.

          Ex. Aは、子供らしい A is a child (positive: wholesome image )
          Ex. Aは、子供みたいだ A is an adult and acts/looks like a child.
          Ex. Aは、子供っぽい A is an adult and childish (negative)

          But ぎみ and 的 are different from mitai/rashii/ppoi

          You never say あの子は子供ぎみ・あの子は子供的

          ぎみ means to have a sign of something.a little ~
          Ex. 風邪気味だ to have a slight cold.
          and 的 is very limited and you can’t use with any noun.
          Those I had in the lesson are very common ones.

          1. This little explanation helps me a lot to get the general idea.
            Nice job for you maggie sensei.
            Anyway I know you are well known in this field and good at English too.
            That is what is most needed for the student here.
            If the teacher can only speak Japanese, the information can’t be conveyed well to the student.


  29. Maggie sensei, sorry for the confusion, about the first question, I forgot to include the translation referring to必死に私たちを守ろうとしてくれている方たち

    What kind of feelings do they have when facing such dangerous place? Though THEIR HEARTS ACHE, I couldn’t thank enough those people who desperately protect us”

    So my question now are

    1. Areどんな想いで危険な場所に立ち向かっているのか… and 胸が痛くなりますが、are included in 1 sentence:

    My heart aches wondering what kind of feeling do they have when facing such dangerous place

    or胸が痛くなりますが is connected with the next sentence:

    Though my heart aches (given that there were earthquakes), I couldn’t thank enough those people who desperately protect us”

    2. Was she referring to her own feeling/chest when shed said“胸が痛くなりますが” or she was referring to the feeling/chest of ”必死に私たちを守ろうとしてくれている方たち”?

    1. Hi Obakasan000!
      How have you been?
      Whenever I hear ℃-ute, I think of you. 😊

      1) 胸が痛くなりますが、

      It is her own feelings.

      So we can assume what comes after 立ち向かっているのか

      (想像しただけで・考えただけで) = Just thinking about/Just imagining how they ~~

      2) You are right.
      These ても will be more natural to translate when/whenever.

      Good guess!

      1. It’s an honor to be remembered by Maggie sensei. :)

        I’m still sad but at least, 矢島様 is still in show business and still active.

        After the disbandment, her activities have been lessened so I see to it to listen to her regular radio show (through youtube) to hear her voice (though I can only understand 10-30%).

        I’m still figuring out how can I buy her goods from here (Philippines), without too much hassle though.

        Just a follow up question about ても. Can I safely assume that it somewhat emphasized the verbs for said sentences?

        1. Of course I remember you! 
          I think °C-ute are very lucky to have a fan like you!

          Yes, you use ても to emphasize / giving some examples.
          I mentioned the usage in my ても lesson.

          Ex. この魚は煮ても焼いても美味しいです。
          = Kono sakana wa nitemo yaitemo oishii desu.
          = This fish is delicious whether you boil it or grill it.

          So 一緒にいても楽しい。 She is a fun person to hang out and so on.

          1. Thank you so much dear Maggie sensei. :) :) :)

            By the way, I have another question.


            I would like to ask where 大分 applies to? Is to 前に or to the video?


            I have recorded the video/s “long” time ago, but because I couldn’t watch it/them by myself, I waited for my friend to come first and we watched it together.

            Video (thought it is not stated in the sentence):

            I have recorded “a lot”of videos before, but because I couldn’t watch it/them by myself, I waited for my friend to come first and we watched it together.

            Thank you so much in advance dear Maggie sensei.

  30. Good day dear Maggie sensei,

    I hope you are doing well today :)

    My first question is, I would like to know if she was referring to her own feeling/chest when shed said“胸が痛くなりますが” or she was referring to the feeling/chest of ”必死に私たちを守ろうとしてくれている方たち”

    At first I thought, “どんな想いで危険な場所に立ち向かっているのか…
    胸が痛くなりますが “, could mean, “my heart aches wondering what kind of feeling do they have when facing such dangerous place”. But then, after reading it many times, it appears that it could also mean, “What kind of feelings do they have when facing such dangerous place? Though my heart aches (given that there were earthquakes), I couldn’t thank enough those people who desperately protect us”


    My second question is, about the usage of ても here.

    話していても素敵だなー って思うの



    The given translation is:
    she takes a loooot of things into consideration,
    she has a strong sense of responsibility,
    she never forgets her gratitude to those around her every day,
    and I think “What a wonderful person ” whenever I talk to her too
    I’m sure all of the fans already know that and are saying
    “Eh? You just now noticed??”,
    but when we’re together, I feel she has a really beautiful heart.

    This is the first I have seen ても translated without, “even/even if”. But then when I tried to translate it:

    話していても素敵だなー って思うの

    Even I talk about her always remembering to show gratitude to the people around her, I think it is wonderful.


    Even if we are together, I think he has a really beautiful heart.

    It appears that “even” won’t fit here because during their C-ute days, they were always together and she always praised her. So I would like to ask, what could be the purpose of usingても (話していても/一緒にいても) in this particular sentences where in it has been translated as “whenever/when”?

    But If I completely understood this wrong, please correct me.

    Thank you so much in advance.

    1. It’s an honor to be remembered by Maggie sensei. :)

      I’m still sad but at least, 矢島様 is still in show business and still active.

      After the disbandment, her activities have been lessened so I see to it to listen to her regular radio show (through youtube) to hear her voice (though I can only understand 10-30%).

      I’m still figuring out how can I buy her goods from here (Philippines), without too much hassle though.

      Just a follow up question about ても. Can I safely assume that it somewhat emphasized the verbs for said sentences?

  31. Hello sensei,

    can u please explain to me the difference between “tame” and “tameni”
    by example sentences

    Thank you

    1. ため・ために you can omit に but the meaning is the same

      1) cause
      キャンプ雨のために中止となった。 = キャンプは雨のため、中止となった。

      2) purpose

      試験に合格するために毎日勉強している。= 試験に合格するため、毎日勉強している。

      3) to do something for someone’s sake

      家族のために車を買った。= 家族のため、車を買った。

      ため sounds a little more formal.
      I will add more examples when I think of the cases you can’t use one of them.

  32. Hello Maggie Sensei, I hope you are well. I have a small suggestion with regard to your lessons. I would like to suggest that at the beginning of lessons, a summary of the purpose or usage of the topic (verb, adjective, phrase, etc…) be included.

    I just personally find it useful in that it establishes a context for all your (always) fantastic examples of usage.



    1. Hi Tim,
      Thank you for your suggestion.

      Right now, my style is

      1) How to form (verb/adjective/noun/particle, etc.)
      (I occasionally include rough summary of the purpose )
      2) classified by the usage.
      3) colloquial usage
      4) advanced usage

      So you want me to write 2) (just the usage of the topic) first?

      1. Hi Maggie Sensei,

        Thank you for your very prompt reply. So, my suggestion is sort of like you said, a rough summary of the usage first. I’ll just explain my thought sequence behind my suggestion.

        It is like a synopsis of a movie or book. Sort of giving the general idea of what is to follow. An example of your lesson that does this early on is your lesson on ‘aida/aida ni’. Right at the beginning, you give 3 usages of the word. So if it comes later, I will try to deduce the usage from the examples. Nothing wrong with that, of course. So, I just find that if there is a summary like “today, we are going to learn XXX which is used to express YYY”, would give context to the content early on.

        Again, this is just me, and I thought I’d make the suggestion. In no way does this take anything away from your system. I sincerely appreciate very much what you have been doing here. Thank you very much for that.

        Thank you again.

  33. Hello Maggie Sensei!

    First, I want to say thanks for all your work you put into this site, I’ve been studying Japanese for about a year and your lessons are pretty easy to digest.

    I mostly practice reading by playing games and chatting with a native Japanese acquaintance. For the most part, I can easily understand normal writing, but when it comes to fictional character speech styles I have a lot of trouble reading sometimes. This is pretty troublesome since it appears in the stuff I read a lot but I haven’t been able to find any resource that lists and explains these speech styles.

    I’m not sure if this is too much to ask for, but would you consider making a lesson on fictional character speech styles such as thug speech, upper class woman speech, samurai speech, classical speech, etc?

    1. Hi Gin

      Thank you for visiting my room!

      FYI I made a male speech lesson. Click the link
      I don’t have “thug speech” which I have been trying to avoid making one because it has lots of cursing words and I am a lady. 😉

      But it is a kind of fun idea to make a general fictional character speech lesson including samurai speech.
      I will add it to the request list.

  34. ‎Why are the potential forms of verbs used with が and intransitive, while the dictionary form of the same verbs are transitive?

    食べる > Transitive.
    食べられる > Intransitive.

    「日本語を話す」, but potentially… 「日本語が話せます。」

    1. As you know, you need an object marker を when you use a transitive verb.

      However, you use が or は with verb potential form to emphasize what you can do.

      1) 日本語ができる / 日本語はできる

      2) 納豆が食べられる /納豆は食べられる

      You use は when you show the contrast.
      1) I can speak Japanese but not other languages.
      2) I can eat Nattou but maybe not other special Japanese food.

      There are cases that you can use を with potential form.
      For example when it modify a noun


  35. Hello sensei

    could you explain what is the difference between


    1. Hi nangryo

      1) 植木を垂直に並べて庭を作るということだ making a garden (by) planting the tress vertically

      2)植木を垂直に並べる庭を作るということだ making a garden which you are going to plant the trees vertically

      The purpose of the garden is you are going to plant the trees vertically

      3) 植木を垂直に並べた庭を作るということだ making a garden which trees are planted vertically

    1. だけのことはある to deserve ~ because + some convincing reason (~is qualified/works hard, etc.) / No wonder ~
      (You use this expression positively)

      = He got perfect score on the test. He deserves it because he studied hard every day.

  36. Hello Maggie,
    I am back studying for N3 and I came across these 3 similar phrases but do not really know the difference between them ( they all seem the same to me ):

    I understand the basic meaning, the reason/ cause / because of, but they all seem same to me. Can you give reason ands possible examples where a sentance will work only with each of the above and not the others?

    Thanx in advance

    1. Hi Fynx

      I can’t give you all the details here but hope you get the idea by the example sentences.

      Vため to do ~ / for ~
      Vために+ verb do/did something in order to do ~
      Noun + のために  = for something/someone

      purpose / for / in order to

      によって+ verb ~ is/was done by ~
      による + noun Something by ~


      Vから reason / because

      sentence + ことから ~: based on ~/ from the fact ~ (literal/formal)


      1. Thank you Maggie,
        the reason why I asked the question is because I got this sentence but it does not follow the rules you listed.
        I have this example for the によって, or による, that I cannot quite understand, it does not fit in your examples above:


        What is the due to and effect in the above sentence?
        It seems like the cause is that there has never been a virus until now, and the effect is that its Infuenza? Or whats the due to?
        Can you explain please?

        Thanks in advance

        1. Ah OK, that ~による “to be caused by ~ ” due to ~ ”

          * Sentence pattern:
          Something は〜によるものだ。
          = Something is caused by ~

          The flu this year is caused by the new type* of virus.

          the cause is the new type of virus which hasn’t existed before.
          The effect/result is “influenza”

  37. マギー先生



    I am thinking of a structure similar to that of bowls when I order ラーメン。 On the menu they have sizes listed in brief form: 大 (だい)、中 (?)、小 (?)。


    1. こんにちは、ロバート
      優先 priority
      (verb form 優先する/優先させる= to prioritize)
      Ex. 優先席= priority seating
      Ex. 友達を優先する= to prioritize one’s friends

      優先順位 can be translated as “priority” but it means “the order of priority”

      Ex. ~に優先順位をつける
      = give priority to ~ = to decide what comes first and what comes after

      一覧表 for 優先順位?
      If so, how about

      1. こんばんは、マギー先生


        詰まり、「high priority」と「medium priority」は「優先が高い」と「優先が中?」ではなくて、「優先順位が一番」という事ですか。

        1. 優先順位が高い・低いとも言います。
          「番」はorder 「高い・低い」は程度 degree を表します。

          1番 家族
          2番 友達
          3番 仕事




          1. そうなのですか。複雑質問してすみません。


            I would like to order things that I have to do. For example, if there is something that needs to be done immediately (and given the most effort), I would give it “high” priority. However, if something did not require as much effort or if it were not required for my work-life, I would give it “low” priority. Finally, if it were something required for my work-life but was not as important, I would give it “normal”/”medium” priority.

            I tried to make a chart, but maybe マギー先生の方法の方が良いかも知れません。(マギー先生の方法は「優先順位」と「一番、二番、三番、など」でしょう。)


            I was trying to imitate the menu when ordering ラーメン、 where I see the different sizes (大(ダイ)、中(チュウ)、 and 小(ショウ))。


          2. Yes, I would use 1) 2) 3) for 優先順位 but if you want to use 高/中/低 , you can say “優先順位の高さ”
            The kanji for one word is
            高(こう) 中(ちゅう) 低(てい) but in this case it is just an abbreviation of 高い たかい/中くらい ちゅうくらい or 普通 ふつう/低い ひくい
            The problem is if you say 高/中/低, low 低(てい) means “low” so it doesn’t sound like priority anymore.

          3. 私は間違ってしまいました。

            I am not trying to make the order in which I perform tasks; I just want to establish their level of priority so that I can decide the order.順位を決める為です。


  38. Hello sensei I have come again,
    Thank you for your help before

    I need a specific answer for this question

    A. スーパーで健康食品を買えます

    B. スーパーで食品を買うことができます

    C. スーパーで食品を買われます

    1. My question is If I want to say “Healthy food can bought on the supermarket”
    Which option fit best? I think B would be the best but I’m not sure.
    If none are right please give some example

    2. Is option A is best translated as “I can buy healthy food on the supermarket?”


      1. Thank you sensei
        I’m sorry for being not good enough to understand this. Let me confirm again
        Do you mean that
        can be said as:
        1. I can buy healthy food on the supermarket
        2. You can buy healthy food on the supermarket
        3. Healthy food can be bought on the supermarket

        So in many case of reading I need to find the context to match the closest meaning. Is this right?

        1. Hello Bryan,
          スーパーで健康食品を買えます = スーパーで食品を買うことができます = I/you can buy healthy food in the supermarket (depends from the context). The second one sounds more polite.
          スーパーで食品を買われます sounds a little odd in normal conversation for me (if it’s passive honorific, then OK).


          PS 二番目の部屋を作るってなかなかいい考えだぜ~、マギー!

          1. Sorry Bryan. I didn’t read your question but you are lucky! 天人 helped you! 😉

            Hi 天人! Thank you for always helping people here while I am busy chasing a cat in heaven.
            明日からOriginal Maggie Room見えなくなります。この部屋が一杯になったらまた第3の部屋を作りますね。

          2. とんでもないっすよ^^

          3. こちらで消すことはないから記録は全部残っていますが、サイトがまたまた重くなるかも。

          4. I posted this a long time ago. If i don’t scroll down the comment section, I wouldn’t notice it.

            Thank you for replying even though this was posted a long time ago.
            Both 天人さんとマギー先生

  39. Hi, I have a question,

    In a wedding, someone is making a speech and she said this (taken from Minna no nihongo book)


    I thought it should be

    Why do they use をhere instead of が? And what action does を implying in this sentence?


    1. to think A as ~
      You can both say
      When you stress A, you use が

      I thought Maggie was cute.
      マギーを可愛いと思った。 (simply “Maggie” is an object.)
      マギーが可愛いと思った。 (emphasizing “Maggie”. Nobody else but Maggie!)

  40. hello sensei hope you are well,

    I recently have found new words.
    協調 and 協調性
    they are both noun so in which situation do I use one of them?
    What makes them different to each other?
    I hope you can give me example sentences

    thank you as always

    1. Hi Bryan
      協調 cooperation
      協調性 cooperative (describing one’s personality)

      To need the cooperation with a country A.
      = He is not cooperative.

      1. Thank you マギー先生

        one more thing,
        I made some finding and decided to check it with you
        is there any difference between

        From what I have known,
        みたいに end with verb
        みたいな end with noun
        みたいで end with na-adjective

        Is this right? Thank you

        1. You got みたいに and みたいな right.
          みたいに + verb 
          みたいな + noun

          But where did you get the idea of
          みたいで end with na-adjective?

          みたいで this で is “and”/ “so” (to give a reason)

          I’ll show you some examples.

          あの子は、大人みたいに話す。 That child talks like an adult.
          あの子は、大人みたいな洋服を着ている。 That child wearing adult-like clothes.

          That child seemed to be in trouble so I wanted to help him.

  41. Hi, Maggie!

    I have question for you, but it isn’t exactly about Japanese language. I would like some advice please. I really want to find some sort of Japanese mentor (for language and information on some cultural history or modern culture), but I am not sure where to look/who to trust. I don’t mind paying for services, but I would like a nudge in the right direction. Do you know of a site or company or any good place that I could contact a native Japanese that would be willing to answer all my deeper questions? I know you are very knowledgeable of course, but I can’t ask you millions of questions, and I know it isn’t your policy to do personal translations and such. But that is what I am looking for: a personal teacher. I don’t have time to take a university class or anything like that because of my work schedule, so I’m looking for someone I can negotiate some times with. Please let me know if you have any suggestions. Thank you.

    1. Hi Chan

      I understand you well.
      I think you are already motivated enough to study Japanese.
      Though I have never tried language exchange sites/apps,I heard many people use it to make friends or teach languages each other. Have you tried any of them? That would be the cheapest way.
      It would be ideal for you to find the right Japanese friends who are willing to help your Japanese but not all the Japanese people could answer your deep questions.
      Or it is going to cost you some money but you could take a Skype lesson. I bet there are many Skype lesson sites out there.

      Wish you lived close to us so that we could give you a personal class. All our students can ask questions all the time.
      So far my “paws” are full but when we have more time, we will offer some tutor service on Patreon in future.

      1. Thanks for the advice!

        And I wish I lived close, too! I have studied a lot about Japanese culture for years now, but I am always looking for better clarity on different topics or personal opinions from Japanese people themselves and not just textbook stuff or things I see on the internet. I really love the culture and want to…treat it properly? I am not trying to be a “fangirl.” I know that Japanese language and Japanese culture isn’t some sort of “cool trend,” so I don’t want to make mistakes. That’s why I want a tutor so badly.

        I have seen a few language exchange sites, and I did try one before, but many of the people I talked to only wanted to learn English ><. I enjoyed helping them out with their questions, but I wanted to learn some Japanese, too! I will try another (:

        And I will try to look for some Skype lesson websites. That's a really good idea. I didn't think of that. Thanks!


      1. Sorry I don’t know why but my question got deleted :/
        Some days ago I studied the ようになる topic and there was this sentence 最近、揚げ物を食べたると胃がもたれるようになった。 I was wondering why there was a る after 食べた.

        Thank you

        1. Hi Angela,

          It must be a typo.
          It should be 揚げ物を食べると~ (Not 食べたると)

  42. Hello maggie sensei,

    It is maybe simple but I want to know what is the difference between
    why using 繋いで手 instead of 繋いでる手

    Thank you very much

    1. Hi Bryan

      Where did you see 繋いで手? I want to know the context but “the hands which we hold” should be either 繋いだ手 or 繋いでいる手(casual 繋いでる手)

        1. I checked the lyrics. I guess it is a pun.
          The first one is 繋いでて keep holding (connecting)
          and the second one is 繋いで手

          It only works when you reverse the order of words 繋いで….手(を) 

          1. Thank you sensei this should clear my doubt.
            Appreciate your work
            In order to improve my japanese I will try to type in japanese.
            So there will be mistakes since I’m not confident in my skill yet.


            ”デザートの桜餅は残しておくん ”


          2. おはよう!
            = “I” will save sakuramochi for dessert.
            Focusing on what I am going to do.

            You are talking about “sakuramochi for dessert” as a topic.
            Focusing on sakuramochi.
            Maybe the speaker will eat everything but sakuramochi. (You are showing the contrast)


  43. Hi Maggie-sensei!

    What does ‘愽士並み’ mean? it refers to a name. I guess it means ‘old-fashioned’ or ‘ordinary’?

    Thank you!

    1. Hi Lily

      Ahh I don’t have a lesson on 並み yet. I guess I should make a short lesson on Twitter or Facebook.
      〜並み means “as ~ ” (equally to ~ )
      博士並み 博士 is Dr. PhD, expert and they supposed to be intelligent or knows a lot of things. So you often use it to describe a person who knows as much as 博士.

      Ex. 彼は博士並みに頭がいい。

  44. Hi again Maggie-Sensei! ^ ^

    I have just read your lesson about “no desu” and it said it could be use as to give a reason. So, is there any difference between kara and no desu when answering question?

    1. Hi Sno,

      OK, if someone asks you,
      Why are you wearing a jacket in the house?

      In English, you can say

      1) Because I am cold.
      2) I AM cold!

      Both give a reason but 1) gives a reason clearly 2) is more like making your point or sounds more explanatory.
      The equivalent translation in Japanese will be
      1) 寒いからです。
      2) 寒いんです。


  45. Sensei, What does this sentence mean?
    I think a picture would be more helpful to let me understand if you would be able to get one.

  46. Hello sensei

    I have a question
    sometimes I heard people saying
    what is this shitoku??

    Is this Enryou+shite+oku?

    thank you.

  47. Quote: “学校の旅行で、京都へ行くことになりました。
    This で is 手段 (means, measures)
    This で describes the state/condition

    As for Maggie’s room. I will close this room upon your request and open a new room.”

    Thank you for opening a new room :)!

    I know I’m being a bother, but I don’t fully understand it yet. Please help me..

    In the 1st sentence, I would translate it as “‘By means of’ our school trip,..”? I don’t really get it
    And for the 2nd sentence, I would translate it as
    “According to her, women when wearing makeup, and ‘the state’ when women don’t wear make up are quite different/has a notable change”. Is that correct?

    Also, isn’t adding ‘the state’ – dewa here a little unnecessary when we already have toki?


    1. What I meant by “means” or “state” is just the function. You don’t need to use the words in the translation.
      But now I think of it, there is a better way to interpret the usage so let me try again.

      Maybe it will be easier for you to think as a reason/purpose.
      →For school trip

      As for the second one,
      When you compare the two things, you say

      AとBでは〜 among A and B / compare to A and B

  48. hello! I am trying to learn Japanese vocabulary for describing how to pronounce sounds using the articulatory muscles in your mouth. The English I’m trying to translate from is pretty technical so I’m not sure if it sounds normal or proper in Japanese? Sentences like…. 口の屋根に舌を置いて or 唇を丸めって ( as in trying to describe how to make the ‘r’ [ɹ], ‘th’ [θ] and [ð], and ‘l’ [ɫ] sounds in English). I hope this makes sense! Do you have any resources or vocabulary that would help?

    1. Hi Abby

      口の屋根に舌を置いて → How about 舌を上顎 (うわあご)につけて〜
      唇を丸めって→ 唇を丸めて

      Why don’t you use Japanese google and type
      Ex. Rの発音
      Ex. Thの発音

      I bet there are tons of sites where you can get all the explanation in Japanese.

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