Thursday, June 30, 2005

Oniichan in the Making

No "news" to report on the subject of Koji actually becoming an oniichan, but it doesn't hurt him to practice. Here he is with four-month-old Sion Kimura. He was very tender with her, which is a promising trait for an oniichan-to-be (again, I mean sometime in the future). These "--chan" references I'm making remind me of one convenient feature of the Japanese language: vague title words. I'm sure there's a much more scholarly term for what I refer to, which is this:

Otousan=Father, Okaasan=Mother, Ojiisan=Grandfather, Obaasan=Grandmother, Ojisan=Uncle, Obasan=Aunt, Oniisan=Older Brother, Oneesan=Older Sister

These are all names for people in one's family, right (and in which case "chan" is often substituted for "san," indicating familiarity)? And yet not, because they can also be used to address or refer to others outside of the family who fit the appropriate age bracket. I repeat, I find this very convenient. We simply don't have such a system in English, and therefore, if you want to address someone, you must know their name or risk rudeness, "hey, you!" and "honey" being examples that spring to mind.

3 comments:

Mom said...

I can see that Koji was being so careful to hold Sion's head. So sweet. I wanted to just jump into the screen and put kisses on those little cheeks.

The addressing someone whose name you do not know reminds me of your Dad's routine of calling waitresses "hon."

xox

Jodie said...

What a cutie pie Koji is! I love that picture! :)

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