Wednesday, June 4 2008

Classroom fun

One of the other students in my reading class brought in the first chapter of the One Piece manga, which we finished a few weeks ago. Towards the end, there’s a scene in the bar where the villain Higuma is laughing with his gang about how pathetic Shanks and his pirates seem to be. One line in particular is noteworthy.

To set the scene properly, the teacher is a rather attractive woman “somewhere past age 30” (coughcough), there are two male students in their early twenties who are big Japanese pop-culture fans, and a basically-bilingual female student who’s about 19. And me, the big hairy over-40 otaku. We were translating as we went, and I had just finished reading the following speech bubble:

ぶっかけられても文句一つ言えねェで!!

This loosely translates as, “they didn’t even complain when I threw a drink in his face!”, but before I had a chance to say that, the teacher launched into an explanation of the verb, which she was sure we wouldn’t know: bukkakeru.

All three of us guys were trying hard not to say anything, or look at each other. We just let that one go quietly by…