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A Trip to the Baseball Game

Monday, October 15th, 2012

Today, we bring you another blog post from Motoko, JapanesePod101.com lesson creator, host and Office Party Planner! Motoko will be sharing more bilingual posts on our blog, so check back often and leave a comment!

Hi all, Motoko here.

Today I’d like to tell you about the baseball game the Innovative Language team went to at the end of September. But before I do, which sports are popular in your country? And do you know which sports are popular in Japan?

The answer is: soccer and baseball.

Soccer came to Japan because it was popular in Europe. Baseball, on the other hand, can be written in kanji (野球), and that’s because it was introduced to Japan much earlier than soccer was. In fact, it came to Japan in 1872. It is said that it started when an American man taught some Japanese college students how to play baseball.

Of course, playing baseball is quite popular, but also people young and old love watching it. Stadium tickets come in two types; one is “reserved seating” where you can choose where you’d like to sit ahead of time. Another is “non-reserved seating”, where you can choose where to sit on game day. The second kind is cheaper. Spectators drink beer, eat snacks, and watch the game. Throughout the game, staff (mostly ladies) carry beer tanks through the crowd, so you can easily get more beer without leaving your seat!

The game was held at Meiji Jingu stadium, which is close to Shibuya. The seating areas are divided among the two teams. In this stadium, the seats on the first-base side were for Yakult Swallows supporters, and the seats on the third-base side were for the opponent’s (Chunichi Dragons), supporters. So, if you’re cheering for the Swallows, you need to have a seat on the first-base side.

Speaking of cheering for the teams, we found some unique supporters’ gear to help us do just that. Some people had pairs of miniature plastic megaphones and made loud noises by beating them together. Other people had little umbrellas and danced with the cheering groups. Each baseball team has their own mascot. Tsubakuro is the mascot of the Yakult Swallows – “swallow” is tsubame in Japanese. Actually, the first baseball team ever to have a mascot was from Japan. Did you know that?

(Sep, 2012)

Japanesepod101.com Tokyo Office Visit Part 2

Friday, October 12th, 2012

Today, we bring you another blog post from Motoko, JapanesePod101.com lesson creator, host and Office Party Planner! Motoko will be sharing more bilingual posts on our blog, so check back often and leave a comment!

Hi everyone, Motoko here!

Today I’d like to tell you about another listener meetup we had.

The other day, we had two JapanesePod101.com listeners come to visit us. One was from Canada, and the other was from France. It was the second meetup for me, but I still felt nervous beforehand!

Andre from Canada, and Becher from France paid us a visit.

They met each other through their Japanese studies, and this was their first trip together – they were staying in Japan for two weeks. They told us that right before they came to the office, they had been shopping around in Akihabara, and also mentioned that they had visited Kobe, Kyoto, Osaka, and had even climbed Mt. Fuji! I’ve never climbed Mt. Fuji, by the way. I was surprised to learn that they had gotten around to it before me!

They were both very friendly, and seemed excited about coming to Japan as well as visiting the Innovative Language office. Our office is not that big, and we have a small recording booth in the corner of the room. They seemed surprised at how compact it all was.

They also mentioned how hot Japan still was even though it was September. September is the first month of fall, but it’s still quite hot in Tokyo. There were even some days where the temperature reached 30 degrees  it might be an effect of global warming.

Andre said that he would make sure that his next trip was in winter. Not a bad idea!

The Innovative Language staff will be waiting for you the next time you come to Japan!(Sep, 2012)

Japanese Culture - Do you know what Marine Day in Japan is? (海の日)

Monday, July 20th, 2009

On the third Monday of July each year, the Japanese celebrate what is known as Marine Day (”Umi no hi”). This is a relatively new national holiday to celebrate the honor of the ocean and wish for the prosperity of Japan as an ocean country.

In the past, the sea has played a very significant part of Japan’s economy.  Marine Day was originally designated in 1941 as the anniversary of the day when Emperor Meiji returned in 1876 from his boat trip to Hokkaido after an inspection.

When it was became a national holiday in 1996, Marine Day fell on July 20, but it has since been moved to the third Monday in July to create three-day-weekend, which is part of a movement called the “Happy Monday System” where a handful of designated holidays were moved to Monday.

Aquariums, swimming pools, and other facilities related to water or the ocean make their facilities available to the general public at low discounts and also arrange special events on this day.

Learn Japanese - Learn more about Japanese, Japan and Japanese culture.

Learn Japanese - Japanese song lyrics translation website (Forum Spotlight)

Monday, July 20th, 2009

Welcome to Forum Spotlight! Here we’ll be introducing interesting and useful posts made by members at our very own JapanesePod101.com Forum. This week’s forum spotlight post is by Taurus, who shared a great site that features Japanese songs lyrics in the original Japanese with nice English translations. After posting this, many other forum members jumped in with their own Japanese lyric site links. Singing in Japanese is actually a great way to improve your Japanese pronunciation, so why not give it a try!

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Posted by Taurus:
I’m sorry if this has been posted before but, inspired by my quest to find surprising karaoke songs, I’ve just come across a website that has a load of song lyrics in both Japanese and English. It might be useful if you’re trying to expand the range of your exposure to original Japanese sources.

http://www.quartet4.net/ (English translation, Japanese)
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Recommended by Psy-san
http://www.kasi-time.com/ (Japanese)
http://www.animelyrics.com/ (romaji)

Recommended byKobukuro-san
http://mognet.net/ (English translation, romaji, Japanese)
http://www.cherryblossom-garden.com/ (romaji, Japanese)

Recommended by Jessi
http://www.uta-net.com/ (Japanese)

Recommended by Kageri-san
www.gendou.com/ (English translation, romaji, Japanese)

Thank you everyone for the great links!

You can find a lot more useful information like this at the JapanesePod101.com Forum, so stop by and join in the many discussions with fellow listeners and the JPOD101 crew!

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Learn Japanese - Learn more about Japanese, Japan and Japanese culture