My Sweetie Is Japanese

Explores everyday Japanese culture as seen through the eyes of a foreigner married to a Japanese woman. (This series is an homage to the wonderful manga ダーリンは外国人, My Darling is a Foreigner.)

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The narrator introduces his wife, a modern and cosmopolitan woman who is also very particular about certain traditional foods.
Notes: This article is written in an upbeat and polite style that feels like Japanese you might hear in a public speaking situation (for example, a TED talk). It features polite verbs and straightforward, well-formed sentences. Direct quotations of story characters reflect more casual speech.
Editions Status Total Readers
Standard Unread 7548
Japanese families can be quite self-deprecating, which can sometimes lead to awkward moments.
Notes: Featuring well-formed sentences and straightforward grammar, this article contains useful vocabulary relating family life and marriage.
Editions Status Total Readers
Standard Unread 3944
Pro
The narrator is caught off-balance by his mother-in-law's comment, leading to an uneasy moment.
Notes: This article contains excellent vocabulary and expressions, such as "lines (that an actor might deliver)" and "making a (funny, angry, happy, etc) face."
Editions Status Total Readers
Standard Unread 1752
Pro
Getting to know your spouse's parents can always be a little nerve-wracking. But are you ready for some one-on-one naked time with your new father-in-law?
Notes: This article contains straightforward grammar plus a few useful cultural tidbits.
Editions Status Total Readers
Standard Unread 1266
Pro
The narrator heads to the onsen with his wife's father.
Notes: This article contains lots of useful vocabulary, such as the words for imitating someone, soaking in a tub, and heading somewhere.
Editions Status Total Readers
Standard Unread 1069
Pro
The narrator enjoys a quiet moment and reflects on his journey into Japanese culture.
Notes: This article should be mostly straightforward, but the last paragraph, with its reflection on lessons learned, might be slightly more challenging.
Editions Status Total Readers
Standard Unread 941
Pro
Our narrator discovers that while Japan is in some respects very modern, in other ways it can still be quite traditional.
Notes: This episode contains lots of useful vocabulary and grammar notes, such as ones about the word hazu, the pattern for "assisting" someone with a task, and a common way of saying you are confident in your abilities.
Editions Status Total Readers
Standard Unread 966
Pro
The narrator experiences the eye-popping volume of food that is a traditional Japanese breakfast.
Notes: This article contains lots of good vocabulary, including a breakdown of two similarly-named dish types, as well as a discussion of the gurai that means "just about only."
Editions Status Total Readers
Standard Unread 862
Pro
The narrator is simultaneously nervous and excited about meeting the gang from his wife's former office.
Notes: This episode contains two extensive notes, one about different words that refer to polite language, and one about the "storytelling present."
Editions Status Total Readers
Standard Unread 519
Pro
The narrator learns an important lesson about speaking as peers for the evening.
Notes: This episode contains a note on the word sasuga, as well as a long breakdown of bureikou and some tips for partaking responsibly.
Editions Status Total Readers
Standard Unread 432
Pro
The narrator considers the reluctance of Japanese people to use English.
Notes: This episode contains notes on the use of wa after an amount, plus a breakdown of a very challenging sentence.
Editions Status Total Readers
Standard Unread 479
Pro
The narrator relates an experience that sheds light on his question.
Notes: This episode contains a note on the word sore-zore, plus a breakdown of a long sentence with two special uses of wa.
Editions Status Total Readers
Standard Unread 383
Pro
The narrator lays out his answer to the original question.
Notes: This episode contains a note that analyzes the essay to determine what the author's main point is.
Editions Status Total Readers
Standard Unread 360
Pro
The narrator marvels over food quality at various establishments.
Notes: This episode demonstrates a useful suffix that means "freshly-; just- (made, etc)."
Editions Status Total Readers
Standard Unread 358
Pro
The narrator arrives at an ideas about why Japanese restaurants are so good.
Notes: This episode contains a note that breaks down a long sentence, as well as one that takes up the pattern sono X, sono X and a derivative of it.
Editions Status Total Readers
Standard Unread 316
Pro
The narrator gets a lesson on an important part of the New Year's holiday.
Notes: This episode contains lots of interesting cultural notes.
Editions Status Total Readers
Standard Unread 303
Pro
The narrator grapples with what to think of this custom, but putting himself in the place of the kids helps him to come to terms with it.
Notes: This episode contains a great example of the word mon/mono being used in a special sense.
Editions Status Total Readers
Standard Unread 280
Pro
The narrator describes a surprise he experienced on his birthday.
Notes: This episode contains notes on an expression that means "to nearly (do something)" and a use of the word tonikaku for emphasis.
Editions Status Total Readers
Standard Unread 351
The end of the year is not just a time for holidays, as narrator discovers.
Notes: This episode contains an expression that means "to involve an innocent bystander in a (usually tragic) event," and two long notes that look at sentences with omitted components.
Editions Status Total Readers
Standard Unread 325
Pro
The narrator relates the consequences of differing cultural expectations related to hosting and hospitality.
Notes: This episode contains several less-common vocabulary words, such as one that means "to entertain guests with food and drink" and another that means "to prepare food in advance."
Editions Status Total Readers
Standard Unread 364
Pro
The narrator and his wife meet in the middle.
Notes: This episode contains a note on the interesting expression nan nara, a way of avoiding being too direct.
Editions Status Total Readers
Standard Unread 260
Pro
The narrator strikes a nerve in his wife and learns a new expression.
Notes: This episode easily contains more references to poop than all other episodes across all other series combined.
Editions Status Total Readers
Standard Unread 364
Pro
The narrator dives more deeply into the topic by asking a friend for his take.
Notes: This episode contains a note on the word sasuga, as well as interesting vocabulary, as always.
Editions Status Total Readers
Standard Unread 222
Pro
Everyone knows that service in Japan is amazing...as long as you stay within the lines.
Notes: This episode contains two breakdowns of sentences that demonstrate "special effect" usages of wa.
Editions Status Total Readers
Standard Unread 264
Pro
The narrator wonders why the restaurant can't make a simple change...and gets a reasonable explanation from his wife.
Notes: This episode contains a very challenging sentence, accompanied by a detailed breakdown.
Editions Status Total Readers
Standard Unread 205
Pro
The narrator relates an experience at a restaurant near his hotel.
Notes: This episode contains a note on the use of the (volitional) to suru pattern and a discussion about differing definitions of "good customer service."
Editions Status Total Readers
Standard Unread 165
Pro
The narrator muses over his wife's oddly frequent trips to the store.
Notes: This episode contains notes on the word matomete, two instances of the -te oku pattern, and more.
Editions Status Total Readers
Standard Unread 60