JPNS 2000

Dialogue for Presentation 9


(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 and Michiko are schoolmates who don’t know each other very well.  Michiko sees that John does not look so well and initiates the following conversation. 


(1)         みちこ:ジョンさん、元気がありませんね

(2)         ジョン:う〜ん。ちょっとおなかがいたいんです

(3)         みちこ:どうしたんですか

(4)         ジョン:きのう、友だちと晩ご飯を食べに行ったんですたぶん食べすぎたんだと思います



(1) Michiko says to John that he does not seen to have any energy.   She uses the at the end because she is subtly soliciting confirmation.

(2) John answers “yeah,” and explains that his stomach hurts.  ([body part]
が いたい means “[my] [body part] hurts”)

In his answer, he uses a grammatical pattern called the extended predicate, which is used for explanations:
ちょっとおなかがいたいんですAs your book mentions on TB p. 270-71, this pattern is used to give explanations or to provide background information (here, about the fact that John does not look too good).    

To form the extended predicate, here is what you do. 

adjective phrase:     あついんです

adjective phrase:      きれいんです(Don’t forget to add a ).

Noun phrase:                   日本語んです(Don’t forget to add a ).

Verb phrase:                    おもしろい本を読んだんです。(Put the verb in short form before the extended predicate.)


Actually, is a contraction for , you might also sometimes hear のです, which means exactly the same thing.  All of the examples above are in long form.  In short form, you would say んだ. Just be aware that the extended predicate in short form sounds very brusque and abrupt, so it is most often used with friends. 


(3) Michiko asks the question “What has happened?”  Note that her question uses the extended predicate again: どうしたんですか。The reason that she uses the extended predicate is because she can see that something is the matter, and is seeking an explanation.  The question どうしたんです is extremely useful and can be used just about anytime that you see something is out of the ordinary and are seeking an explanation.  As a result, you might hear this sentence a lot in Japan, especially if you are lost, upset, sick, or something like that.


(4) John explains that yesterday he went to eat dinner with his friends.  In this sentence, he uses the extended predicate since it is part of the explanation: きのう、友だちと晩ご飯を食べに行ったんです。

He then says that he probably ate too much. たぶん means probably, and食べすぎる means “eat too much.”  Notice that he uses the extended predicate within the embedded sentence before と思います。 The extended predicate is in red: たぶん食べすぎたんだと思います。A good translation would probably be, “I think that probably [the explanation is that] I ate too much.”   The explanatory part is not the act of thinking (the final verb of the sentence), but the eating too much.  That is why the extended predicate comes with the “ate too much,” and not with the final verb in the sentence, “think.” 


The verb すぎるby itself means “to pass by” or “to go by.” For instance, 車は大学をすぎました “The car went by the university.”  However, you can stick すぎる onto the verb stem of another verb to make a compound verb that means “do something too much.”  (Remember, the “verb stem” is the part of the verb that comes before ます). 



 “Yesterday, I drank too much alcohol, and this morning, I have no energy.”



 “Because that restaurant is cheap , I ate a little too much.”



 “The day before yesterday, I made too much food so there is still a lot left.”


You can combine すぎるwith adjectives too.  To combine with an adjective, take off the final then add すぎる。



“That medicine is too strong.”

“The teacher’s Japanese is too fast.”

“When my mother drives the car, she is too slow.


To combine with an adjective, just add すぎる。No need to add any な。


あのいぬはわかくて、元気すぎます            “That dog is young and overly energetic.”

テストはかんたんすぎて、百てんをとりました。  “The test was too easy; I got a hundred points.”



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Updated March 27, 2013