Bundle 20: Concepts of Time

The sun, moon, and seasons are natural clocks, but time is also a construct. As this bundle shows, the Japanese divide time into units of 10 (days, months, or years), also perceiving 72 microseasons. Japan has observed lunar, solar, and other calendars, plus 60-year cycles and multiple era systems. For all this precision, people approximate time with "the good old days," "once upon a time," or "around the time." They also have a particular take on time when saying that a food is in season, "at your age," and "It's a great time" for a certain activity.
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JOK: 1373
If you always think of a month as having 4 weeks, it'll blow your mind to conceive of it as having 3 parts. Learn how 旬 came to represent not only "10-day period" but also "season (for crab, strawberries, etc.)." See how restaurants use 旬 in coinages to convey that they're serving seasonal foods. Also learn about an innovative collaboration between a chef and a drug company!
ancient; old
JOK: 1481
Discover how calling something "old-fashioned" in Japanese can be an insult or a compliment. Learn to say that the recent past feels like ancient history. Also learn to say "I used to be a different person," "Hollywood isn't what it used to be," and "That was then and this is now." Find out how although 昔 can currently mean "decade," it once meant a time span as long as 66 years!
JOK: 1927
Learn why Amazon describes a new calendar as 新暦・旧暦. Find out about Japan's relatively recent switch to a solar calendar, an event that inspired a novel, manga, and movie! Learn to calculate age and the year in multiple ways, read about the significance of turning 60 in Japan, and learn about calendars for illiterates and flower calendars. Also see why one temple has 暦 in its name.
JOK: 2011
Learn to approximate time, as in "about noon" or "toward the end of June." Find out how to say, "I have seen nothing of him lately," "Young people wear their hair long these days," and “At your age, you ought to know better.” Learn how to announce that it's a great time for seeing cherry blossoms and that it's high time for a vacation. Also discover the "age at which one has many worries.”
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