A fair number of people have asked how best to study Japanese and I haven’t been able to come up with an adequate answer, because, as I’m realizing, I didn’t really study that much. It was more like this:
I listen to a song that I can’t understand and I hear a sequence of syllables carried on a beautiful and furious rhythm. The notes punch me mercilessly and I crave more. I listen again: the same forty seconds, repeated fifty, then a hundred times. Not enough, I need to sing, so I look up the lyrics. Can’t read them. Ten minutes later, I can, at quarter speed. An hour later, at normal speed, with reasonably natural pronunciation. And the foreign dance of my tongue lights my mind on fire. The strain in the singer’s voice—why? What do those words mean to the one who said them first? So I beat my head against the exotic structure of the language until it cracks and shatters and the missing warmth of someone’s solitary afternoon spills into my lap.
Finally, I know why you chose those words.
I love them too.