Could anyone please tell me whether each of the following is correct or not when I explain the Japanese word to a non-native speaker of Japanese?
1. "Gohon" is the sound you make when people cough.
2. "Gohon" is the sound people make when they cough.
3. "Gohon" is the sound you make when you cough.
4. "Gohon" is the sound people make when you cough.
5. Others (If you have any suggestions, please tell me.)
I guess 2 and 3 are correct, but a native speaker of English used a sentence like 1 when he explained an English word to me and it looked a little odd to me.
P.S. I wrote "cry" in the title but I changed my mind and used "cough" in the above text. Sorry for the confusion.
Thank you for answering my question!
Then he said "Sniff sniff is the sound you make when people cry." Maybe because he is only a child although he is a native speaker of English...?
I might have an idea what your friend meant. To be honest, I wouldn't say "Sniff sniff is the noise people make when they cry". I don't think that's the case. When someone cries, other people sometimes say "Sniff, sniff" or "Boo hoo". They are being a little disparaging, almost as if they're saying "Oh come on, stop being pathetic".
In light of the above, I think "Sniff sniff is the noise you make when people cry" means something along the lines of "Sniff sniff is the sound that some people make when someone else cries".
I'm ready for anyone/everyone to disagree with me.
Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.
I'm losing the will to live.
In a website, this person was asking for advice on how to learn Japanese. Some people resonded to his post and wrote and they introduced some websites where he can learn the language. I wrote he should at least get a text book or a two and recommended the most popular text book that is used in Japanese schools here. Then he wrote "sniff sniff. I already got a book. And my moms not really in the zone to get me another one." I knew the "sniff" means the sound people make whey they cry, but I also knew it has another meaning (Longman says it means "to say something in a way that shows you think something is not good enough"). So I asked him if he meant this by "sniff sniff". Then he answered "No actually sniff sniff is the sound you make when people cry."
Sorry to disclose the context bit by bit. I know how important the context is as I used to be a teacher of Japanese, but it's always difficult to decide how much context you should write. If you provide too much, it would be difficult to read and time-consuming for the readers. Also, in this case, I didn't want to write the whole conversation here without his permission.
Last edited by pinkie9; 28-Apr-2013 at 04:04.