I noticed the new thread in the Media corner 'Cute Mao pics from Tumblr
,' in which racyong25
gave us the link to Uncyclopedia Japan(http://ja.uncyclopedia.info/wiki/%E3%83%95%E3%82%A3%E3%82%AE%E3%83%A5%E3%82%A2%E3%82%B9%E3%82%B1%E3%83%BC%E3%82%BF%E3%83%BC). In the very last part of the page, there were quotes of some funny things Mao had said in the past. They're all famous so most of you may know it, but I've decided to translate them:
1.When asked about what food she likes.
Reporter:What is your favorite food?
Mao:I like Yakiniku(barbequed beef)!
Reporter:*You eat alot?
Mao:Yes, I like the kind of Yakiniku which you eat!
*In Japanese, this question was 'Taberu hou desu-ka?', which can be understood naturally from the conversation as 'Do you eat alot of it?'. However in direct translation, 'Taberu hou desu-ka?' can also mean 'Do you mean the kind you eat?' and Mao took it as that. Well, there's no such Yakiniku which we don't eat. (Taberu=eat, hou=kind, desu-ka=are you/is it)
2.When asked about skating.
Reporter:Is there anything that scares you (when you skate)?
Mao:Ghosts are scary!
3.When asked about jumps.
Reporter:How do you manage to do those incredible jumps?
Mao:I just go, *'Yoisho!' and jump!
*'Yoisho' can be translated as 'Heave-ho!'. In nuance, 'Yoisho' is an outdated phrase used mostly by the elderly. You rarely hear it from young people...and mind you, Mao was still a little girl when she said this...
4.At a press-conference promoting her new commercial for a ham company.
Reporter:So, I guess we all know what you had for breakfast this morning?
5.When she first met Taichi Kokubun of the idol group TOKIO.
Mao:(all excited) Have you ever met Nagase-kun!?
Kokubun:Met him...? We're um, in the same group you know...
6.When asked in an English press-conference how the skating environment was in the United States when she was training there.
Mao:*Ai laiku shoppingu-molu!
*Yep, she answered in English just like that!
7.During an interview in 2006 NHK Cup
Mao:*I will do as hard as I can, and do as hard as I can!
* In Japanese she actually said 'Ganbatte ganbari-masu!'(Ganbatte=try hard/do my best, ganbari-masu=I'll try hard/I'll do my best)
8.On spraining her ankle right before 2008 Worlds, being told by the doctor it'll take 2 weeks for it to heal, but returning to practice in just a week.
Mao:*My feet sure are sturdy!
*'Why did it get sprained in the first place then?'...was what the Japanese people were questioning themselves when they heard that...
9.In an interview done by Mai, about her bad conditions in 2009-10 GP series (note they were talking strictly about skating and competitions only before this.)
Mai:How was it in France (Trophee Eric Bompard)?
Mao:The croissants there tasted so fabulous!
10.Upon her 4th victory in Japan Nats, and thus achieving her ticket to Vancouver Olys.
Announcer:Next we'd like some comments from Ms Mao Asada...
Mao:Good evening folks! *My name is Mao Asada!
*Okay, she actually said 'I am Mao Asada'. But the way she said it sounded more like 'my name is...', which was pretty awkward because she said that standing right in the middle of the skating rink right after the competition was over, so I'm sure everyone in the audience knew who she was! The other thing was, the announcer had asked for Miki and Akiko's comments before asking Mao, and they were like 'Uh...um...well...I'm...um...feeling...um...alot of um...responsibility...and...um...', speaking in rather small voices, in kind of a shy causious tense way. But Mao's voice was much louder than them, plus she wasn't the least bit nervous, it was quite funny everyone burst out laughing the minute she opened her mouth including my husband and me who were watching it on tv. Plus, I'm quite certain that Mao probably had no idea what was so funny about it.
Maybe you all know this, but Mao is called a 'Ten-nen' here in Japan. 'Ten-nen' means 'a natural' in this case. The phrase was at first 'Ten-nen boke(pronounced:bohkei)', meaning 'a natural senile' but was shortend afterwards. Though it may sound bad, we usually use it for people whom we adore. People who are clumsy, awkward, misunderstands things often, says peculiar things often etc., making us laugh without aiming to be funny at all, are considered as 'Ten-nen'.
Btw, one of the most famous 'Ten-nen' characters in Japan is Shigeo Nagashima. He was a pro-baseball player in the Tokyo Giants team, became a baseball manager later on. In Japan he is literally 'Mr Baseball' himself, and was a great hero to all the kids and baseball fans during his days...and I guess he still is. However, though he was a genius in ball playing, he was also known for crazy episodes which made it clear he was a true 'Ten-nen'; most legendary of all time. His legends include comments like:
'Wow, this is a handy book! It's got all the French words in Japanese, too! I wish they had something like this with English.'(when he accompanied a friend who wanted to buy a French-Japanese dictionary to a book-shop when he was a college student)
'I can't find my sock! Everyone, help me find it before the game starts!'(and so his team-mates searched for the damn sock, only to find in the end that Nagasshima had worn 2 socks on the same foot)
'I can't find my car keys! Everyone, help me find it or else I can't go home!' (and so his team-mates searched for the damn keys, tearing the locker room apart, only to hear from Nagashima in the end) 'Oh wait! I took the train to get here today...'
'The kids here are so smart! They can all speak English! And everyone rides in foreign cars!' (when he went to the US for a team training camp)
He also took his son (who was in kindergarten at the time) to see a ballgame he was playing in, and forgot to take him home, leaving him in the audience all alone waiting for his dad to come pick him up, until everyone else was gone. Btw, it was only after the stadium staff found his son and phoned him at home that Nagashima realized this. Also btw, this happened twice!
There are much more episodes about Nagashima...I have a feeling, Mao may become a legend like him in the 'Ten-nen' field some day, too. But she's loved in Japan for that as well as her skating. Plus, Nagashima has proved already that 'Ten-nen' characters sometimes make the best of athletes!