englishu by takadashinji2
Here’s a segment on learning English for Japanese speakers from a popular TV program in Japan called “Sekaiichi Uketai Jugyou” which translates as “The world’s best class” and I found it on the Japan probe website. The task for the contestants is to order food items in a mock restaurant using English but they make mistakes by using katakana words instead of the proper English ones so the “waiter” delivers what they explicitly ordered instead of what they think that they ordered. Katakana (片仮名, カタカナ or かたかな) is a Japanese syllabary, one component of the Japanese writing system along with hiragana, kanji, and in some cases the Latin alphabet (rōmaji). The word katakana means "fragmentary kana", as the katakana scripts are derived from components of more complex kanji. Each kana represents one mora (a unit in phonology that determines syllable weight, which in some languages determines stress or timing). Each kana is either a vowel such as "a" (ア); a consonant followed by a vowel such as "ka" (カ); or "n" (ン), a nasal sonorant which, depending on the context, sounds either like English m, n, or ng ([ŋ]), or like the nasal vowels of French. It is used mainly for transcription or loan words from other languages.
In the segment, one contestant asks for “mikkusu sando” (ミックスサンド) thinking that they want a mixed sandwich when the waiter brings mixed sand which sounds more like the request. Other requests are shu kurimu” (シュークリーム) which may sound like shoe cream but is actually an order for a “cream puff.” The Japanese word is actually based on the French word for “cream puff” which is “Chou à la crème.” “gamu shiroppu” (ガムシロップ) is a syrup sweetener and not chewing gum while aisu kohi” (アイスコーヒー) is iced coffee. The segment also comments that while iced coffee is a new arrival in America it has been common in Japan for over a hundred years