「worth, worthy, worthwhile」の違いは何?

"Why have you put another picture of a banana here, Nick?" you may be asking.

I know someone who hates bananas. I asked her if she had ever eaten a Sembikiya banana. I had never eaten one, but theoretically, they should have some of the best bananas in Japan.
  • theoretically 理論上{りろんじょ う}は、名目上{めいもく じょう}は、理論的{りろんてき}に言えば (definition from Eijiro on the Web)
I asked her if she would be willing to try a Sembikiya banana. She said yes, so today we ate Sembikiya bananas as an experiment.

Bravely, she ate one quarter of a banana without making too many strange faces. She didn't want any more, though.

Of course it tasted pretty good, since it's from Sembikiya. I prefer green bananas, and these were slightly green. I was happy about that.

However, I didn't think it was worth it. <- "worth" is a preposition! I learned something!
  • It wasn't quite worth it, was it? (definition from Eijiro on the Web)
They aren't worth 210円 each, though. <- see? "210円" is a noun, and "worth" is a preposition...

Doing the experiment was worthwhile, though. <- "worthwhile" is an adjective
  • worthwhile 【形】やりがいのある、値打ちのある、価値{かち}のある、無駄{むだ}ではない (definition from Eijiro on the Web)
The experiment was worthy to try. <- Maybe this is ok, but... I never say "worthy"...
  • worthy ~に値する、~するに足りる (definition from Eijiro on the Web)
The experiment was worth trying. <- Ah... this is much more natural for me.



I've felt the need for spring cleaning recently. One of my projects is throwing out things that I no longer need. My new rule is "if you haven't touched it for a year, you don't need it."
  • All of today's definitions are from Eijiro on the Web.
  • throw out 投げ出す、投げ捨てる
This is a bag of things that I'm getting rid of. Thanks to my bicycle, global warming, and being a vegetarian, this bag contains wool scarves that I can toss.
  • get rid of 〔好ましくない物を〕取り除く、除去{じょきょ}す る、削除{さくじょ}する、排除{はいじょ}す る、廃する、駆除{くじょ}する、駆逐{くちく}す る、退治{たいじ}する、一掃{いっそう}す る、処分{しょぶん}する、始末{しまつ}す る
  • toss ~ into a trash can ~をごみ箱[くず入れ]に投げ入れる[ぽいと捨てる]
Disposing of some things is tough. I have a collection of old batteries that need to be dumped because I still don't know where the special bin for them is in my building's garbage collection area.
  • dispose of garbage ごみを捨てる
  • dump 中身{なかみ}を)放出{ほうしゅつ}する [ドサッとあける]、~を投げ捨てる、投げおろす、ドサッと降ろす、捨てる、放り出す、置きざりにする
I've already chucked about 10 percent of my personal belongings. I wonder how much more I can throw away.
  • chuck out 駄目{だめ}にする、解雇する、捨てる、処分する
  • throw away ~を投げ捨てる Throw this away. : これを捨ててください。/これ、捨てといて。/これ、ポイして。
  • personal belongings 身の回り品、私物、身の回りのもの、所持品{しょじひん
"Throw away" is the most common one, probably, but any of these can be used to say 捨てる.


Yet と still の違いは何ですか?

Last week was a milestone in my life. No, I haven't hit 40 yet. My pet fish, two clown fish, turned 43 days old. I am new to fishkeeping and hadn't had much success until recently. I once had a fish that died within 24 hours. (Yikes!!!) My previous record was 6 weeks. I was dubbed the "fish killer" by my family. I felt guilty that some fish had died under my care.

However, the pair I have at the moment are healthy and as happy as a clam. They haven't died yet. They are still alive.

Yet is mainly used in questions and in negative sentences, and is used to mention something which we expect to happen but hasn't happened. Here are a few more examples.

My brother is 54 but he isn't married yet. (Most people marry in their 20s or 30s.)
It is 4:00 in the afternoon but I haven't had lunch yet. (People usually eat between 12 and 2:30)
I am going to Hawaii tomorrow but I haven't bought a ticket yet. (People usually buy an airplane ticket in advance.)

Still refers to an action or situation that hasn’t finished, or that is ongoing, up to and including the present (or the time mentioned). Often this "not being finished" is surprising, going against expectations.

She has been living in Spain for 20 years but still can't speak Spanish well.
George is 40 and still lives with his parents.

Let's practice. Fill in the blanks with yet, still, or not yet.
Have you made the reservations for the hotel ____?
I have taken my car to the mechanic twice but it is ______ making a strange noise.
We will leave soon but _____.
Are you _____ interested in going to the movies this weekend?
It is 11p.m. and you are ______ in the office?
It is 11p.m. and you haven't finished your work ____?

I will post the answers in my next blog.

Useful vocabulary
clown fish ~ カクレクマノミ

be dubbed ~ 《be ~》~と異名をとる、~とのあだ名がある[をもらっている・を付けられている・で呼ばれている]

guilty ~ (~に)罪の意識を感じる、(~という)罪悪感{ざいあくかん}を感じる[を持つ・に苛{さいな}まれる・にとらわれる]、(~という)後ろめたさがある[を感じる]、(~を)後ろめたく思 う、(~で)気がとがめる、(~を)やましいと思う、(~を)悪いと思う
feel guilty (about [for])

as happy as a clam~ とても幸せで[満足{まんぞく}して]
Joe is as happy as a clam. ~ ジョーはとても幸せで満足している


Happy birthday to us!

We have now been writing this blog for one year. This past Thursday was our first birthday.

We've had about 2,200 readers in that time. While most of our readers are in Japan, we've had readers from places like Morocco and Poland. Thanks to everyone for reading our blog!

We haven't planned a birthday bash; for now, I guess I'll just eat a banana.

  • birthday bash
    誕生祝い{たんじょういわい}◆この場合のbashは(酒を飲む)宴会のこと (definition from Eijiro on the Web)
  • for now
    今[現在{げんざい}]のところ、差し当たり (definition from Eijiro on the Web)
Here are three most popular posts, as ranked by number of views.

Number three is a post from September on how to use the word "enjoy".


Number two is a post from April of last year on the difference between "describe" and "explain".


The most popular post is a post from late October on using "as to" and "as for".


We're always interested in what you think of the blog. If you have any questions or suggestions, please let us know. We really want to talk about the things that interest you.


ジュード・ロウ が出演した映画の名前は。。。?

I need your help. We were talking about movies in class the other day and though I am kind of a movie buff I couldn't remember the name of a movie. Perhaps you, my dear reader, could help me. It is a Hollywood movie that features Jude Law and Nicole Kidman. It is a love-drama which is set during the U.S. Civil War. You know Jude Law don't you? He is one of the main actors who appears in the new Sherlock Holmes movie. Jude Law plays a soldier who is returning home to see his long lost love. I can go on but don't want to spoil the ending for you. Do you know which movie I am talking about? Anyway, I give this movie two thumbs up.

I have yet to meet anyone who knows all the words in the English language. As a matter of fact, I use 関係詞節 in Japanese (almost) all the time. I don't know all Japanese words (and never will) so when I am at a loss for a word I try (my best) to explain the words using relative clauses. Mastering and using relative clauses in English can save the day. You'd be wise to do so. It is very easy to practice relative clauses. The easiest way is to try explaining something about Japanese culture. Pretend you are a Japanese culture expert.
Your friend: "What is Setsubun?"
You: It is the day when...
The key is to keep your explain simple and most importantly is to think of some facts (in your head) associated with what you are trying to explain, like the picture I have up.

Useful vocabulary
U.S. Civil War~アメリカ南北戦争
spoiler warning~《イ》ネタバレ注意◆ネット上で小説・映画などの内容を紹介するときの前置 き。その作品をまだ読んでいない(見ていない)人に対して、ストーリー展開を知ってしまうと新鮮に楽しめないと思うなら以下を読まないでください、と告げ る。通例、学術的な作品批評などではこのような断り書きはせず、主にカジュアルな記事で慣習的に使われる。
give/get two thumbs up~最高だね。/上出来だね
at a loss~困って、途方に暮れて
・My boss is at a loss. He has no idea how to get through this crisis. :
I am at a loss (of) what to do. :



I was riding my bicycle to class just after sunset. I was doing high-speed on the approach towards the Bank of Japan. I passed through a traffic signal. There were many cars and trucks parked on the left side of the street, and a taxi passed me on the right.

Suddenly, from between two parked vehicles, a female office worker ran into the street. I had one second to react. I swerved to the right to avoid her. She continued to run into the street.

× That's when I attacked her head-on. <- it was an accident!
◯ That's when I hit her head-on.
  • 襲う (おそう) (v5u) to attack; (P);  (definition from Edict)
  • 当てる (あてる) (v1) to hit; to apply a patch; (P); (definition from Edict)
My bicycle and right elbow hit her, and I came flying off the bicycle.

× My body twisted in the air, and I attacked pavement with my hip.
◯ My body twisted in the air, and I hit pavement with my butt.
  • 腰 (こし) (n) hip; (P); (definition from Edict)
  • お尻 (おしり) arse; bottom; buttocks; <- butt (definition from Edict)
I rolled over my backpack and landed upright on my toes. I grabbed the bicycle and ran to the woman. Another woman had come from the sidewalk. The woman I hit was completely stunned and half-lying in the street. She couldn't open her eyes somehow.

"Are you OK? Are you hurt?" we asked.

She stood up, her eyes still closed. The other woman picked up the stunned woman's glasses. I suggested that we immediately get out of the road. We walked her to the sidewalk. She said she wasn't injured. I checked her face and elsewhere for blood. There wasn't any. I tried to ask her where I had hit her, but the Japanese didn't come to mind quickly.

"I'm OK," she said and paused. "Conversely, are you OK?" she asked. The other woman walked off.

"I'm fine, I think," I said. "Please please please use a crosswalk the next time you cross the street."

"Yes, yes," she told me. She walked away down the sidewalk, and I adjusted the chain of my bicycle, which had come off. Then I rode on to my class.

I was lucky I didn't break my neck. My only injury is this scrape on my arm. She's lucky that I wasn't a taxi; she would have likely been killed or really badly injured.

For all you pedestrians, cross the street in clear areas at least. Better yet, use a crosswalk!