So the first few days of our project has been spent listening, mostly. We’ve slowly been trying to “Japanify” our life as much as possible and have so far watched トライガン (Trigun) in it’s entirety without subtitles, as well as listened to several radio talk shows for hours on end. We even listened to spoken Japanese while we slept! We’ve both had a dreams where we were trying to form actual sentences based on what we knew, which wasn’t much, but it’s a start!
But the first thing we did while all this was going on, and we feel this is important, was to choose a Japanese name. Why? Because if you’re trying to “be Japanese” and emulate a Japanese environment, why on earth would you call each other by foreign names?
If you were to head over to Japan on an exchange, in most cases you’d end up adopting a Japanese name, or at least a surname. We felt that choosing Japanese names for ourselves would help us take the project (and ourselves) more seriously. We felt a bit silly at first, calling each other by our new names, but in time we’ll grow comfortable with it and it will feel familiar. Just as the rest of the Japanese language will.
Of course, if you’re doing this project alone, you don’t need to choose a name. Heck, you don’t even need to choose a name period. But what if you want to start communicating with Eiji and I? Wouldn’t you love to have a name (or nickname) to represent this new Japanese you? (We’ve even gone so far as to start calling our cats by new names!)
If you don’t, that’s all right! But in case you do, we’re compiling a list of current Japanese names. When you search for Japanese names using English search engines, unfortunately all the sites have old and outdated names. (I know because I had originally picked Kimiko as my name because it held the same meaning as my English name, but then I found out only Japanese women in their 50s and 60s really have the name anymore! Whoops!) So, after trudging through Japanese baby name sites and lists using our elementary understanding of Japanese, we’re providing a list so you don’t have to!
Please keep in mind that we’re beginners and this is an attempt at learning kanji and sharing, so there’s bound to be mistakes. Please double check our kanji meanings (or triple check) if you feel the need when deciding a name. If you see any corrections or have any additions to make, feel free to email us at kanjiandtea [at] gmail [dot] com!
We’ll add to the lists (daily) as we go! So here we GO!
Learning Japanese At HomeOur goal for Kanji & Tea, aside from sharing our struggles and successes, is to help provide the everyday person with all the tools necessary to learn Japanese on their own through everyday immersion.
How did you learn your first language? Hands on and not through a text book! You listened, you watched, you absorbed. Well, what's stopping you from learning your second or third language that way? The answer is nothing.
You have everything you need to get started. All that's left is to just start.
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