Monday, 4 October 2010

Monday Vocabulary

When I was little I, like many others I'm sure, loved Sesame Street. My dad would probably tell you that I preferred Mr. Rogers or Mr. Dress-up, and while he'd be right, I'll always have a soft spot on my heart for Snuffleupagus. Looking back I also like the idea of a letter and a number for the day - the "today's program brought to you by the letter 'C' and the number '3.' It makes sense paedeologically - breaks down a big lesson (all the letters of the alphabet and all numbers) into manageable bits, you learn a little more each day, and lessons are reinforced with examples (lots of 'c' words and groups of three). I'm doing the very same thing studying for the JLPT, thanks to a handy kanji and vocal application for my iPhone I've even been doing it just about daily too.

Yesterday, however the universe (or at least a couple of train companies) ganged up to impose a word on me. My word for yesterday? Chien-shomeisho (or chien-sho). It's the slip of paper handed out by train companies to passengers when a train is delayed - like the notes parents write to excuse a child's absence from school. A sort of get-out-of-being-late-for-free card. And my number? Three - as in three out of three of my morning trains were late and handing out chiensho.

I dutifully collected my chiensho and tried not to run over too many obachan as I raced for my transfers. I was at my desk only 15 minutes late.

Happy Monday - what way to start the week!

What letter and number was your day brought to you by?


  1. That's definetly an 'only in Japan' moment. I can't believe they actually did that. Sydney rail would be handing out chien sho everyday to every passenger!! What did they say when you got to work?

  2. I actually had to explain to some co-workers what sesame is and that it is not 'sezme' over a menu at lunch today. Discussion of Sesame Street ensued! Can you recommend the app you're using? I have another important test in December to take but am going to have another go at 1kyu next summer..

  3. Achan - (seriously what is up with iPhone?? Today they want yo change your nickname to 'Avian'!!) I called work while waiting for a delayed train to warn them I'd be late and to apologize. I tried to hand in the chiensho but my direct boss said that the paperwork was a pain and asked me to work an extra 15 min at the end of the day.

    GEG - I'm not sure if you or anyone else caught it but I originally published this post with a typo - Sesme Street. As for the app - I'm not totally convinced it is worth it, the iTunes evaluations were much more glowing than I would be. That said I'm not a vocal and kanji study fan (which would be why I need the app!) so I'm guessing I wouldn't be keen on much. Annnnyways it's called 'jplt study. Sese' Good luck with your tests - any advice from last year's experience?

  4. Thanks, I will check it out. I don't have much advice because the test format has changed. If you know the material, the test really shouldn't feel too hard - it's all just rote memorization, although that is easier said than done. Practicing reading will give you a big boost and help towards allowing enough time for the comp section. To be honest, I was really surprised to hear you were taking it as I had always assumed you were far past JLPT! :)