Twitter user @tororo2048 is a prolific creator of Go comics, known for their style of illustrating stones’ connections, but also other whimsical comics about Go techniques and culture. I’ve been using their comics as Japanese reading practice recently, and it’s fun although a bit challenging. Since I think there are some other Japanese language learners hanging out on the forums, I thought it would be fun to practice together. I’m starting a new topic rather than cluttering up the Language learner’s library or Webcomics topics. It’s my first topic so I hope it’s appropriate .
I’m still definitely a beginner, but have reached the point in my kanji study (via WaniKani) that I can read a lot of the vocabulary used, and it’s the grammar that I’m focusing on learning now. I’ll try to include complete translations so that anyone can enjoy the comics, along with interesting vocabulary or grammar notes. But inevitably there will be some errors so please correct or comment on them, or add anything interesting.
Let’s start with this comic about the ear-reddening move from earlier this year:
title: Before the ear reddening move was played
Wow! I want to expand this black territory around A!
I want to expand white’s territory around B while protecting and stabilizing!
Next, I’ll go around C and expand white’s territory.
If white comes around D we’ll be surrounded and taken… help!
title: After the ear reddening move was played
I am a god…
Okay, somehow the territory is going to be even wider!
Damn, we’re being targeted! Quickly, we have to protect!
Our expansion was obstructed…
Reinforcements! Soon we can reach them!
Here is some vocabulary… these are words that were new to me, or I thought were interesting, or Go related
|打たれる||うたれる||to be played|
|狙う||ねらう||to aim at|
|届く||とどく||to reach, to touch|
Here are some grammar notes, there are several points of grammar that I didn’t understand and because of that the translation probably lacks nuance. But these stood out to me and I have links for them.
In the first panel the white stones around B say「守って安定しつつ」. I’m used to the て-form of 守る and 安定 is a する verb, meaning “to stabilize”, but had never seen 「つつ」. From Tae Kim:
「つつ」is a verb modifier that can be attached to the stem of verbs to express an ongoing occurrence.
Also in the first panel the white stones around C say「広げてやる」. I think I’ve seen やる before (Tae Kim again: “やる means to do only as a physical action”) but ~てやる I was completely unfamiliar with. Like つつ, this does not appear in A Dictionary of Basic Japanese Grammar, I had to look them up in the intermediate volume (which I really only own for cases like this, to file away grammar points for future study). From the entry (applying to the verb て-form + やる):
an auxiliary verb which expresses the idea that someone does something undesirable to someone else
This does seem to add some nuance to the white stone’s statement in the comic, matching the attitude of its facial expression.