Cool Compound – 以上


以上 (いじょう) is a very useful phrase. It’s a short phrase you can use to signal that you’ve finished placing your order at a restaurant or that you’ve finished giving a speech or your portion of a presentation. (以上です。) I guess in that case it literally means, “(Everything I want to say or eat) is above.” Something like that. I guess there’s no satisfying 直訳 really. You could say something like, “That’s all.” or “And that concludes what I have to say.” Those are probably closer to the way it feels.

It’s also used to express “greater than or equal to.” So you can say things like 二人以上 (Two or more people), 10分以上 (Ten minutes or more), and other useful numerical expressions.

Recently it’s been used in a new statistic during weather reports that shows just how sick the Tokyo summer is – 30°以上の時間. Normal statistics like temperature and humidity can’t express exactly how miserable it is in this city during the summer, and since they don’t use heat index, they chart exactly how many hours during the day it is 30 degrees Celsius (86 Fahrenheit) or hotter. Today it was 30 degrees by 9am and it didn’t come down until after 5pm. Gross.

The two-shower-a-day policy is in full effect.