= Kore watashi no maikaa!
= This is my “My car”!
There are a lot “Japanese words” that are English in origin and, unfortunately for the English speaking student of Japanese, the meaning of many of them are different from the original English.
So I will focus on one of them today.
It’s マイ = mai = my
You might think it just means “my” but it actually means “one’s own”and it can be used to mean yours, his, hers, etc. in Japanese.
★マイホーム = mai houmu = my home → one’s own house/ home
= Aa boku mo hayaku maihoumu wo tatetai.
= Ah, I want to have my own house soon.
= Maggie wa maihoumu hoshiku naino?
= You don’t want your own house, Maggie?
= (Anatamo )Maihoumu wo tatetakereba chokin shinaito!
= If you want to have your own house, you should save money.
!to right! See, the literal meaning of マイホーム is “my home” but it means one’s own house.
★マイカー = maikaa = my car → one’s personal car !CAR!
See the above picture?
= Kore watashi no maikaa!
= This is my “My car”!
So マイカー( = maikaa) means “my car” so it makes sense but you can use it for other people’s cars as well.
= Kyou maikaa de kimashitaka?
This doesn’t mean
!BUBU! “Did you come by “my car“?” but it means
“Did you come by your (own) car?”
It means, “Do you have your own car?”
Other examples :
= Maikaa deno tsuukin wo kinshi suru.
= To prohibit commuting by one’s own car.
= Maikaa de iku kazokku ryokou.
= A family trip by a car
★マイウェイ = mai wai = my way → your own way
We describe a person who sticks to their own way this way,
= gooingu mai wai
which comes from “going my way”
= He/ She/ That person is doing things the way they want to, so…
It means this person has his/her own style and usually doesn’t care about cooperating with others.
It could be a bit negative in Japan because Japanese people are said to be group oriented people.
★マイブーム = maibuumu = my boom → your own boom, something you are really into
It got an award for 流行語大賞 = ryuukougo taishou = award for the most popular trend word in 1997 and it has been still used
Its literal meaning is “my boom” which means “your own trend” and it has nothing to do with the real trend in the society.
Ex. Q. あなたのマイブームを教えて下さい。
= Anata no maibuumu wo oshiete kudasai.
= What are you personally into now?
= Watashi no maibuum wa ~ desu.
= I am into ~.
It could be a game, singer, food, sweets, pop star anything はまっているもの ( = hamatte iru mono ) = you are really into or almost addicted to.
( Check my ハマるLesson)
★マイ箸 = mai hashi → your own portable chopsticks
Anywhere you go, you can get free 割り箸 ( = waribashi) disposable wooden chopsticks in Japan.
Recently, people who are concerned with saving the environment take their own chopsticks with them.
Those are called マイ箸 ( = mai hashi ) my chopsticks → portable chopsticks to take anywhere you go.
★マイカップ = mai kappu = my cup → your own cup
You may have this system in your country as well. I know they have this system at Starbucks Coffee.
You take your own cup and you get a discount on the drink.
★マイバッグ = mai baggu → your own shopping bag
(We also call this エコバッグ = Eco bag.)
Since many supermarket started to charge for plastic bags (to help the environment) many people have started to carry their own bags.
So as you have seen, people create their words using マイ( = mai) jokingly to describe something personalized or something that you bring yourself.
It doesn’t work for something too ordinal like マイブック ( = mai bukku) my book, マイ時計 ( = mai tokei ) my watch
It should be something more personalized. Or when you bring your own items because you don’t want to share or use public thing.
= Nani? ”mai surippa” motte kita no?
= What? Did you bring your own slippers?
You might hear the above when someone brings their own slippers to a public place where there are already slippers for everybody.
Many makers use “my” to add a more personalized feeling or nuance to something they are selling.
マイカップヌードル ( = mai cappu nuudoru ) my Cup noodle = Personalized Cup Noodle
Cup Noodle is a brand but you can actually make your own personalize “brand” of cup noodle by picking the design of a package, ingredient, flavor, etc.
Cell phone companies and internet shopping services also name their consumers’ personal accounts with マイ ( = mai ) as well.
•マイソフトバンク = mai sofuto banku = My Soft bank
•マイドコモ = mai dokomo = My Docomo
•マイ楽天 = Mai rakuten = My Rakuten
マギー先生より = Maggie Sensei yori = From Maggie Sensei
= Dareka watashi no “maikaa” ni noritai hito iru?
= So anybody wants to ride in my “マイカー=My car“？
Will you be my Patron?
I appreciate your support! サポートありがとう！
Yaaay! Rafa! 初めてコメントくれましたね！ありがとう！
(a little correction 欲しいよ→行きたいよ
(Correction : レッスンにやります。→レッスンやります。もうここに住ます。→住んでいます。I only correct you because I want you to improve. :) )
You can correct me when you want.
(No need to correct so much. You wrote well! If anything…since you are already here in Japan 行く is better than 来る →ブラジルに行って下さい。そうしたら）
Really interesting! For even Jananese, your lessons are quite useful.
Thanks to Maggie & Yukari!
I am into your lesson!
OMG!! Thank you so much for visiting this site!
Your comment made my day! Please come back!
Hope you pardon me for deviating from the intended purpose of these comments, but I could not come up with another way to draw your attention to a what seems like a problem in the contact page.
Page doesn’t seem to host the usual comment section, which I assume, is how you would prefer to handle generic contacts.
Much appliged. ^^
P.S. Also, using kanji in username field causes an internal error, while trying to post comments. Not that it’s a major concern, I’m sure…
Ohhhh I didn’t realized that problem. Thank you so much for letting us know. We have been doing some maintenance. Will try to fix it asap.
Also Maggie/Yukari i was wondering if i could say this and be correct. Kore watashi wa no mai”noun”
Can i enter any noun after “mai”? Like for example/Rei no<hehe Kore watashi wa no maikawa! Would that be acceptable?
Yes, you can say “これ、私のマイ+ noun!”
But as I explained in the lesson, usually the noun should be something “special for you” to bring somewhere or personalized. So it will be odd to use some ordinary words.
For example, you can have public slippers but you don’t want to use them and bring your own, they will be マイスリッパ
But everybody supposes to bring their own notebook to the class so it will be strange to say マイノートブック
This is kind of like “My Computer” and “My Documents” in Windows OS.
Fun lesson. Thanks Maggie sensei!
That’s right. Also “My Space”!!
I love this lesson. I love the kind of japanese that sounds a lot like english those kinds of lessons are a lot of fun and easy to remember. I taught the kids i help watch the first sentence. “Kore watashi no maikaa!” :) They like to say “sonna bakana” also. Thanks for another great lesson guys!
I’m happy to hear you like this lesson! Also thank you so much for always checking the site.