Another short Wednesday post due to job interviews.
Mastering Japanese can sometimes be as simple as mastering the ladder of politeness – remembering which phrases are used for those high on the ladder and which are used for those lower on the ladder.
いい, as I mentioned last Friday, is often used to either ask permission or refuse something. It’s common courtesy to ask someone, 「いいですか。」 before you sit down next to them. (Notice how I didn’t use a question mark in that sentence. This is something else you should just get used to – you don’t need question marks all the time in Japanese.)
You can power up your いい by turning it into よろしい. This is a polite way to say いい. You can also power up your ですか by turning it into でしょうか. So here’s a little ladder for you.
いい？／いいの？ (My spider sense tells me that this last one is all about the intonation and that will be easier to be understood as a question if you add the の.)
That’s in order of most polite to most casual. Notice that, as usual, the more syllables a phrase has, the more polite it is.