Thursday, October 13, 2005

Being uncivil to public servants

Some kanji are easier to remember than others. For instance, "Kan", which is usually found in words associated with government or officialdom, is a cinch. The top part is a roof, which I take to refer to a building. The bottom part means "bottom" or, more specifically, "buttocks". If you look closely at the picture above you might be able to see that it is a pictogram. So, the way I am thinking of it, government or officialdom is a building where people earn money by sitting on their arses all day. Not exactly fair but you have to take every break you get in this kanji learning lark.

I came across "kan" as an element within another kanji which is often found in words for public buildings (which can also be pronounced "kan"). It combines the "government/officialdom" kanji with an element referring to "eating". I'm imagining a public building in which a very affable but rather rotund security guard sits all day eating sandwiches.

As I say, it's a cinch.

[Previous kanji posts: 1, 2, 3, 4]

1 comment:

Ken Loo said...

Hey! Hajimemashite. Another saying about this kanji is, government officials are double-tongued (two mouths), so don't trust them. :)