Kollective Japanese

「Learn About Japanese Language & Music 」※〖 日本語と日本の音楽 〗

Cooking 稲荷寿司 (Inarizushi)

I recently saw a YouTube video posted by Human Japanese on Facebook that described how to make this amazing stuff called 稲荷寿司 (Inarizushi).  From the second I saw the video, I knew I had already eaten it in Korea when I visited my friend, and it was beyond amazing.  It’s basically fried tofu pockets simmered in soy sauce and sugar, filled with rice and vegetables.  I finished watching the video, my mouth watered, and I bought the ingredients a couple days later at a local Japanese market.  I rarely cook anything beyond bacon and eggs because I seem to screw everything else up…but I was pretty impressed with my first round of Japanese cooking.  Booyah!  The best part is that other than the rice, you can pretty much fill the fried tofu pockets with whatever ingredients you want.  Check out my flawless cooking skills…yes!

You can find the full recipe here, as well as an instructional video on how to try it out yourself. 

戴きます!

Inarizushi - Recipe

Inarizushi - Instructional Cooking Video

Song of the Day - "Zock On"

Once upon a time I was aimlessly searching for Japanese music on YouTube and fortunately came across this song.  I say fortunately because The Neptunes is my favorite music production duo (consisting of Pharrell Williams and Chad Hugo) and they created the beat to this song.  Their beats are easily identifiable since they use unique synthesizer riffs to create funky, hard-hitting rhythms, known as “The Neptunes Sound.” 

The Teriyaki Boyz also have a really cool style, which makes this track an interesting blend of various Hip-Hop influences.  And, as always, Busta Rhymes does his thing and starts the song off with some top-notch lyricism.  I definitely hope to see more collaborations between these guys in the near future.  Check it out!


0 Plays

Japanese Words & Phrases Pt. 3 - Newbie 3, 4, 5

お久しぶりです - Long time no see
しばらくですね - It’s been a while, hasn’t it?
お元気ですか - How are you?
お陰様で、元気です - Thanks to you, I’m fine
こちら - This direction
学校 - School
友達 - Friend
学生 - Student
わかりません - Don’t understand
もう一度お願いします - Once again please
ゆっくりお願いします - Slowly please
学校は家から、ちょっと遠いです - The school is a bit far from my home
こちらは学校の友達のジェニーです - This is my friend from school, Jenny
Particle よ - used for emphasis
Particle ね - provokes a response, usually in agreement with speakers statement
Particle の - possessive used to show ownership or belonging
あけましておめでとうございます - Happy New Year (formal)
今年もどうぞうよろしくお願いします - Please be kind to me this year, too
あけおめ - Happy New Year (abbr.)
ことよろ - Please be kind to me this year (abbr.)
おじゃまします - Sorry for intruding (said to host when entering a house for the first time)

0 Plays

Japanese Words & Phrases Pt. 2 - Newbie 1,2

すみません  - Excuse me (to grab attention, say sorry, or say thanks when waiter/waitress brings food)
初めまして  - Nice to meet you
どうぞよろしく  - Please be kind to me (casual)
ちょっといいですか  - Do you have a minute?
おはようございます - Good morning (formal)
こんにちは  - Good afternoon (make sure to hit second ‘n’)
こんばんは  - Good evening
先生 (せんせい)- Teacher
失礼しました - Excuse me (I’ve been rude)
朝 - Morning
昼 - Afternoon
夜 - Night
またね  - See you later (casual)
ニューヨークは、一時です -  It’s 1:00 in New York
平日の夜、私はジムに行きます - I go to the gym on weeknights
毎朝、私は六時に起きる - I get up at 6:00 every morning
朝から昼まで働きます - I work from morning to noon

0 Plays

Japanese Words & Phrases Pt. 1 - Absolute Beginner

sushi

お土産です、どうぞ。- (This is) a gift, please (take it).
すみません、注文をお願いします。- Excuse me, can I please order?
私たちは忙しいよね。- We are busy.
これはお菓子ですか。 - Is this candy?
凄い!美味しい!これはなんですか。- Great! Delicious! What is this?
戴きます! - Let’s eat! (said before meals)
肉は大丈夫ですか。- Is meat okay?
ご馳走様でした。- It was a feast. (said after meals)
トイレはどこですか。- Where is the bathroom?
本当にありがとうございます。 - Thank you very much
日本の夏も蒸し暑いです。- Japan’s summer is also hot and humid
これは僕の家族アルバムです。- This is my family album
僕の妹です。- (This is) my younger sister.
ちいさいですね。なんさいですか? - (She’s) small. How old is she?
ごめんごめん!うるさい?ごめんね~。- Sorry sorry! (Am I) loud? Sorry
彼女は男の人が嫌いです。- She hates men
お腹空いた。 (お腹が空きました)- I’m hungry
予定があります。- (I) have plans
動物。。いますか。- Animals…are there any?
私は寿司を食べます。- I eat sushi
何を飲みますか。- What do you drink?
あれは何ですか。- What is that (over there)?
今夜僕と太郎さんはカジノに行きます。- Tonight Taro and I are going to the casino
あなたも来ますか。- Are you also coming?
いってらっしゃい!- Have fun (go and come back)!

Japanese Learning Resources

Before I started learning Japanese, I did a ton of research online to try and decide what the best method for learning Japanese is.  Afterall, there are wayyyyy too many options.  I speak a good amount of Spanish since I studied it through middle school and high school, but I still don’t know how to speak the language in the more casual sense that textbooks seem to avoid teaching. 

Based on my experiences so far, I think the Japanese-learning resources that I’ve listed have been extremely helpful in getting me to the level that I’m at now (which is still the beginner level!).  Once you learn how to read and write all of the Hiragana and Katakana comfortably, it feels amazing.  At first, they might look like random squiggles and shapes, but pretty soon they become familiar and you’ll be surprised by how natural it starts to feel. 

The key to mastering anything is practice.  Although I’m constantly busy working and making music, I make sure to set aside time to review Japanese vocabulary and practice my writing skills.  This is vital to the learning process because you probably aren’t being exposed to Japanese on a daily basis.  In other words, you’ll start to forget a lot of information that you learn if you don’t focus and set goals.  It’s fun at times and it’s stressful at times, but it’s always worth it.


  1. Japanese Pod 101 -   This site is fantastic for practicing listening skills and learning plenty of useful phrases.  The best part is that you can download audio files to play while you’re on the go.  Whether you are a complete beginner or at the intermediate level, this is definitely something to check out.
  2. Human Japanese - I have this app on my computer and it’s amazing.  This particular software is much more “human-like” compared to other learning tools because of how the lessons are written and explained.  It’s essentially a textbook taught in a fun, interactive way.
  3. The Japanese Page  - I first learned how to write Kana on this website.  It’s a great start for beginners and I would recommend trying it out.
  4. Tae Kim’s Guide To Learning Japanese - For learning casual, practical Japanese, this has been my best friend.  Not to mention, I’ve learned a ton of Kanji from this website too.  It covers all sorts of vocabulary and grammar rules and it even includes some examples of typical Japanese conversations.  Oh…and there’s NO Romaji at all!
  5. Anki - This download is a must.  It’s a spaced repetition learning system that allows you to review all of the words and phrases that you’ve learned on a daily basis.  Just input whatever new material you want and you’re able to rate the difficulty of each flash card that pops up, which determines how often they appear.  This system helps you remember everything efficiently and I don’t know what I would do if I had to actually write everything down on paper. Thumbs up for technology!  

I find almost all of my Japanese music from iTunes Radio in the “International” section.  This track is called “Golden Luv” by ravex(レイペックス) and Maki Goto.  The entire thing is ill!  If you appreciates good music, you can definitely appreciate this.  Check it out!