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Category: Slang

Pop Quiz #1!

POP QUIZ TIME! Get out two #2 pencils and a sheet of paper. Just kidding. Take this quiz below based on everything we’ve learned so far. Good luck! がんばって! (gan-bat-te; “Do your best!”, “Good luck!”)


JapaneseLingo.com PopQuiz#1


1) "Nice to meet you"

2) "Which~"

3) "There"

4) "This"

5) "Over there"

6) "No" (informal)

7) "Yes" (informal)

8) "That~"

9) "That"

10) "That (over there) ~ "

11) "Where"

12) "I am ___"

13) "That (over there)"

14) "Here"

15) "This~"

16) "No" (formal)

17) "Yes" (formal)

18) "Which (one)?"

19) "How are you?"

20) "And you?"

21) "I'm fine."

22) "I'm not fine."

That's it! Let's see how you did...

If you are human, leave this field blank or you will be considered spam:



Benkyou – 勉強[べんきょう]

勉強[べんきょう] (“ben-kyo-u”; “study”)


Hopefully, you have all been doing this at least a few minutes each day. Remember- Japanese is a very difficult language to learn as a native English speaker! If you want to see results, you will need to dedicate time to studying. Here’s a new phrase to motivate you:

日本語を勉強しましょう!(“ni-hon-go wo ben-kyo-u shi-ma-sho-u!”; “Let’s study Japanese!”)


日本語(ni-hon-go) = Japanese (the language)

日本(ni-hon) = Japan (the country)

〜語(go) = Add this to the end of a country to mean the language of that country.

AをB = This will be explained later, but basically, it says that the action B happens to the action A.
[Verb〜ましょう] is a way to say “Let’s *verb*”. We will expand upon this concept in a future grammar lesson.

PRACTICE: Find some time to 勉強 Japanese a little each day!

Yabai (やばい)

やばい(“ya-ba-i”; lit:”risky”; cool, awesome, uh-oh, dangerous)

Here’s a slang word that’s popular with the younger generation (i.e., “all the kids”) in Tokyo.

Originally, it means “risky”, or “dangerous”.

If you see a scary-looking man walking down the street, you can say to your friend:


(“a-no hi-to wa ya-ba-i!”; “That man looks dangerous/shady”)

Interestingly enough, yabai can also be used to describe someone/something that is WAY COOL:


(“a-no hi-to wa ya-ba-i!”; “That guy is awesome!”)

How can you tell the difference? It’s all about the context. If the guy is wearing a blood-splattered shirt, it means the first definition. If he’s driving a Maserati, it’s the second one.

Yabai can also be used as an interjection, sort of like “uh-oh”, or “oh sh*t!”. If you opened a door, only to find a room full of zombies, you’d say:


(“ya-ba-i! ya-ba-i…. ya-ba-i!”; “WTF?!?!? Uh-oh….”)

It can also be used to tell someone to “Watch out!”, because they are at risk of having something bad happen to them. If you see someone crossing the street, and a car runs the light, you would yell out:


(“ya-ba-i yo!” “Watch out!”)

PRACTICE: Write two different sentences in the comments below using the literal version (“dangerous/shady”) and then the slang version (“cool, awesome”) of やばい (ya-ba-i)


Sugoi (すごい)

すごい(“su-go-i”; cool, awesome)

Even if you have just started learning Japanese, chances are you have heard “sugoi” at least once- especially if you’ve watched Japanese TV, movies, or anime. This is a very common way to say “cool”, “awesome”, or “amazing”.

For example, your response to seeing your friend do a backflip:


(“su-go-i!”; “Cool!”, “Awesome!”)


It can also be used as an adverb. If you just ate some really good ramen:


(“su-go-ku o-i-shi-i”; “Incredibly delicious!”)

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