Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Today's kanji : 恋

Today's kanji is .

The blue part describes
"It's difficult to untie tangled threads".

The red part describes "heart / feeling".

The feeling is like tangled threads.

Can you guess the meaning?

Special hint : What anniversary is today? (^o^)

See the comments page for the answer!


  1. "The feeling is like tangled threads."

    恋 means "love".

    For example...
    恋愛 (ren ai) : love
    失恋 (shitsuren) : broken heart
    恋人 (koibito) : lover

    I' ve heard that in Western countries, men give women a present on the Valentine's day.
    Is that true!?
    It's completely opposite of Japanese custom!!
    I really prefer Western Valentine's day custom☆
    (^ ^)

  2. Anonymous12:54 AM

    Usually that's the case in Western countries. Its usual for both gender's to give presents, but the focus on who gives whom is usually men giving a present to a woman. If you're married/dating, this is a really important day, since if you don't give your girlfriend/wife something, they'll hate for you a LONG time. Most men forget when Valentine's Day is, so its a very stressful day for men. Lots of stores have specials on flowers and chocolates, though.

    Also, a lot of people who are single get really depressed on Valentine's Day, so sometimes they do dumb things (like get drunk at a bar or something) and regret them later. I've heard that women give a gift of some kind in Japan (I think it was a chocolate cake or something, but i'm not sure) to men, but I don't know the whole story on that.


  3. Yeah that's right, Akiko.
    In America men and women exchange gifts on Valentine's Day instead of just one person giving to the other and not getting anything in return. And the gifts are different than they are in Japan too. In Japan a woman would give chocolate to a boy, and then on White Day the boy would give candy or something to the girl. In America the man would typically give flowers, a Valentine's Day card, and another gift. The woman would give a Valentine's Day card, and a gift, but usually no flowers for the man.

    Another difference I feel is that there seems to be a sense of obligation in Japan for a woman to give a Valentine's Day gift (chocolate) to male coworkers, her boss, etc. I would say that generally this is not the case in western countries. In America, giving a Valentine's Day gift has a romantic meaning attached to it. So, if I give my girlfriend flowers, ok. If I give a female coworker flowers, my girlfriend would likely be angry. Of course there are exceptions such as giving one's mother Valentine's Day flowers. In that case of course there is no romantic meaning!

    I remember in elementary school we also exchanged small cheap Valentine's Day cards. In my classes we each had a bag taped to the front of our desk. Then as kids brought the cards to school, they would put the card in each student's bag. Of course there was no romantic meaning to it. If anything it felt like a popularity contest. The cool kids had many cards, and the weird/smelly kids had very few. hahahaha

  4. great one!!
    I really like how you explain the grouping of symbols... and the meaning behind each of the symbols that make the kanji.

    I have a question....

    So each Kanji is a compound? if the Kanji character for "Feeling" was by itself, would it look the same?

    my love just returned to Japan today... and in two weeks I will follow.... cant wait to be reunited.

  5. Thank you very much for your so funny comments! (^o^)

    >Most men forget when Valentine's Day is, so its a very stressful day for men.

    I understand that!
    That's often happened, right?
    Valentine's day, some "very important" anniversaries, even birthday, guys forget these kind of days very easily!!
    Girls don't ask them anything until the day, and when they know their boyfriends / husbands are forgetting the day, finally, they get ungry so much, right!? (^ ^;)

    >If anything it felt like a popularity contest. The cool kids had many cards, and the weird/smelly kids had very few.

    This is so cute!!
    Yes, unfortunately, absolutely, there are some "weird" boys in each class... (I don't know if they are smelly or not though...!)

    In Japan, we did same thing on Valentine's day when I was in elementary school.
    We gave guys small chocolates instead of cards.
    And on White day, their mothers buy candies for the girls, because the boys don't care about it at all!!!

    I just noticed something.
    Actually, Japanse guys don't write cards almost at all except very romantic guys.
    It's very sad...!

    First, white day was "developed" just for business for candy companies.
    Also the custom of 義理チョコ (giri choko) (chocolate of obligation) was also started for bussiness of chocolate companies, I guess.

    As Bill said, girls give their co-workers (or even hate boss!) small chocolates on Valentine's day.
    This custom used to be very common, but recently, this is not "obligation", I mean this is not duty.
    Usually just for fun and some bosses take the girls to a nice restaurant instead of giving small candies. (^ ^)

    What do you think Japanese "giri choko" culture?

    By the way, there are many interesting (funny) chocolates for "giri choko".
    For example, chocolates like calculater written "Work hard more!" or chocolates like woman's body!

    About between boyfriend and girlfirend, we (I mean Japanese people) often exchange quite expensive presents for Valentine's day and white day.
    Watch, wallet, jewelry or something like that.
    We do the same thing on Chiristmas, too.
    It costs too much! (*_*)

    >Life in the superStructure

    >I really like how you explain the grouping of symbols.

    Thank you!
    I was very glad to read this! (^ ^)

    Yes, 心 (the red part for 恋 love) is kanji for feeling / heart.
    You pronounce "kokoro".
    This kanji is from the shape of heart!
    Hmm... do you think 心 is shape of real heart!?

    Fianally, you are coming to Japan!
    Are you excited? (^o^)
    I'm looking forward to your comments from Japan, too...!

  6. Yes I'm coming to Japan on March 1st, but I know I will be lost!!

    心 = this shape does look kind of like a heart..( with veins going into and out of the heart)

    hey I found this one using Heart and Hot....

    hot 熱 + heart 心 = passion 熱心