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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) "Where"

2) "And you?"

3) "There"

4) "This~"

5) "Which (one)?"

6) "I am ___"

7) "That (over there) ~ "

8) "Yes" (formal)

9) "Which~"

10) "Here"

11) "I'm not fine."

12) "Nice to meet you"

13) "That (over there)"

14) "How are you?"

15) "I'm fine."

16) "This"

17) "Over there"

18) "That~"

19) "No" (informal)

20) "Yes" (informal)

21) "No" (formal)

22) "That"

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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