JPNS 1010

Dialogue for Presentation 8


(Supplements for the textbook
Genki: An Integrated Approach, Vol. 1)


Click here to listen to the entire dialogue.

Click on the links below to listen to each individual sentence. 


John is waiting for Akiko and Mary to come to his place to watch DVD together. In a short while, Akiko shows up.












ジョン:ああ、そうですか……  ざんねんですね




Akiko begins by greeting John.  John returns her greeting then asks about Mary, who is not there. 


Akiko says that she thinks that Mary will not come.  In order to say “think such-and-such” in Japanese, you put the verb at end of the “such-and-such” part of the sentence in the short form.  This is then followed with the particle , plus the verb (おも)((おも)います in the long, -masu form). 


The particle is sometimes called a “quotative” particle since it comes after something quoted in the sentence.  We typically see it in statements about what someone says or thinks.  In this sentence, Akiko is thinking, “Mary will not come.”  In English, we do not always put quotes around someone’s thoughts, but in Japanese, the acts as a lexical marker that marks the end of the quoted thought.  Sometimes, in more colloquial Japanese, you will find that the quotative particle changes into って, so if somewhere down the road you hear that, it means the same thing.  That is purely in the realm of spoken language and not written Japanese. 


You have seen the short, dictionary form of the verb many times, although we have not practiced it a great deal in class.  It is a good idea to review the short, dictionary forms for all of the verbs that you have studied so far.  When a sentence is in the negative form, then you have to modify the ending.  See your textbook for detailed instructions about how to make the negative of the short form of the verb. 


John expresses surprise.  The sound えっ, pronounced with a rising intonation, is a sound Japanese use when shocked by something.  He then asks, “Why is that?”  どうして means “why,” and here it is in the long form, with the copula です and the question particle .  


Akiko says, “She was saying that she has her part-time job so…”  Notice that once again here, we have a quoted phrase アルバイトがある (she has a part-time job), with the final verb in the short form.  That is followed by the quotative particle , then by the verb “to say,” () (言います in the long, -masu form). 


Notice that the verb 言う is in the te form.  It is very, very common to put the verb 言う in the te form: 言っています.  This is because the act of saying something is not usually accomplished in an instant; talking usually involves some ongoing process of saying something over a period of time.  Here, the verb is in the past tense 言っていました “she was saying.” 


Here are some other sentences using various forms of the verb combination 言っています。


               先生(せんせい)はあした()ると言っていました。        Sensei was saying he will come tomorrow. 

               アリーさんはすると言っていました。        Ali was saying that he will do it. 

               このおすしはだめだといっています。        [He/she] is saying that this sushi is no good.


The end of Akiko’s sentence アルバイトがあると言っていましたから has the particle から.  This particle means therefore or so and is used to connect clauses in a causal relationship.  Here, the end of Akikos sentence is truncated, but if she were to say the entire sentence, it would be アルバイトがあると言っていましたから、きません。(She was saying that she has her part-time job, so/therefore she wont come.) 


Here are some other sentences that use the particle から to show the cause for something.  (Note that often, the phrase in front of the から is in the short form, but it does not have to be, as we saw in Akikos utterance above.) 


               これはたかいから、かいません。                                                      This is expensive so [I / he/she] wont buy it.

               わたしは日本語がわかるから、だいじょうぶです。              I understand Japanese, so it is okay.

               わたしはあしたいくから、ここにいません。                             I am going tomorrow, so I will not be here.


John says, “Oh really?”  (Note the disappointment in his voice.)  He then says, “That’s too bad.”  ざんねん is a noun that means “[something] unfortunate” or “[something] that is too bad.”  Japanese often say ざんねんですね when something does not work out exactly as they would like.


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Updated March 27, 2008