Keep Your Ears Open – ご覧のスポンサー

お預かりします is “get used to it.” よろしくお願いします is “get used to it.”

The essence of “get used to it” is finding those sentences that surround you in everyday life and learning how to use them/what they mean. It is beneficial to break the phrases down and see how they work, but try not to expend too much brain power or else you’ll be one of those freaks explaining the origin of saying “bless you” when someone sneezes. (Demons make you sneeze, of course, thus making you in need of a blessing. Duh.)

Saturday I was watching TV and saw one of these:

I’m sure you’ve all noticed it at some point. At different points in a show, generally just before a commercial break or the end of the show, the phrase 提供 (ていきょう) pops up on the screen with some company names underneath it. Then the voiceover announcer says 「ご覧のスポンサーの提供でお送りします。」

I believe ご覧 refers to the audience looking at the actual company names written on the screen, so literally “the sponsors you (honorably) see.” That combined with 提供 gives us “the contribution of the sponsors you (honorably) see.”

お送りします is the humble honorific of 送る (おくる), so that’s the television channel itself doing the sending, giving us, “We (humbly) send you (this show) via the contributions of the sponsors you (honorably) see.” Woo.

In English we’d probably say something like, “Brought to you by State Farm Insurance – Like a Good Neighbor, State Farm is there!” That or "Support for Show X is provided by Chevy Trucks – Like a Rock."


Well, it’s Election Day back in the States, so I thought we’d look at party names in translation.

The Republican Party – 共和党 (きょうわとう)

Unsure here, but this looks like a direct translation. 共和 is also used in a lot of country names, such as the Republic of Afghanistan (アフガニスタン共和国) and the Republic of Guatemala (グアテマラ共和国). Exciting.

Break it down by kanji and you get the “together-peace party.” Hmm…suspect.

The Democratic Party – 民主党 (みんしゅとう)

Here we have another direct translation. 民主主義 (みんしゅしゅぎ) is democracy, the theory, and looking on ALC for 民主 delivers a horde of political discourse.

Breaking it down by kanji gives us the “people’s-sovereignty party.” (Yes, the 主 is for 主権, sovereignty.) Hmm…suspect.

Honestly, party names themselves have so little meaning, that direct translation is the only way to go. We are so divorced from the moment when they actually meant something that they only seem like rusty, old institutions, starting to creak with age beneath the weight of generations.

Discourse, my friends, is a lie in any language.

号外 – Mr. Shorty Shorts

Saturday night the booze flowed, and the muse was speaking to me; I thought up an awesome Japanese name for people, such as one of my roommates, who continue to wear shorts into the winter months: 短パンマン.

アンパンマン is a legendary Japanese cartoon character named after a dessert bread stuffed with azuki bean paste.

Actual アンパン:

Actual アンパンマン:

The azuki bean bread (アンパン) easily transforms to shorts (短パン), making a great pun. It received high praise from the other roommates.

You heard it here first. (In the words of John Henson, former host of Talk Soup, "Come on, it’s funny!")