Japanese topsy-turvy words



Topsy-turvy… Yeah. Sounds dumb. IDK maybe there’s proper term for this. What I
mean is a pair of words consisting of the same 2 kanji (with the same
readings, mostly), only in a different order, like this:

日本 「にほん」 Japan
本日 「ほんじつ」 today

花火 「はなび」 fireworks
火花 「ひばな」 spark 

一万 「いちまん」 ten thousands
万一 「まんいち」 unlikely event, one in 10.000 chance 

会社 「かいしゃ」 company
社会 「しゃかい」 society

女子 「じょし」 girl
子女 「しじょ」 sons and daughters

父親 「ちちおや」 father
親父 「おやじ」 one’s father, old man

途中 「とちゅう」 on the way, midway
中途 「ちゅうと」 in the middle, half-way

階段 「かいだん」 stairs
段階 「だんかい」 level, phase

会議 「かいぎ」 conference, meeting
議会 「ぎかい」 congress, parliament

現実 「げんじつ」 reality, true fact
実現 「じつげん」 realization, materialization

海上 「かいじょう」 marine, by/at/on sea
上海 「しゃんはい」 Shanghai

苦痛 「くつう」 pain, agony
痛苦「つうく」 anguish

関連 「かんれん」 relation,

連関 「れんかん」 relation,


形象 「けいしょう」 shape, figure
象形 「しょうけい」 hieroglyphics

I really, really love this post concept, so I thought I’d add a few entries.

日中「にっちゅう or ひなか」 sino-japanaese (only 1st reading), middle of the day

中日 「ちゅうにち」China and Japan

温室「おんしつ」 greenhouse

室温「しつおん」room temperature


室内「しつない」one’s wife

奥山「おくやま」remote mountain, mountain recesses

山奥「やまおく」deep in the mountains, mountain recesses (these two are pretty similar, actually)

土塊「どかい」clump of soil/earth, clod

塊土「かいど」lump of earth

保安「ほあん」peace preservation, security (if read ほうあん can refer to the Houan era)

安保「あんぽ」US-Japan Security Treaty

白黒「しろくろ」monochrome, black-and-white

黒白「くろしろ」black and white, right and wrong

画面「がめん」screen, scene







my favorite thing i’ve learned in college is that way back in ancient china there was this poet/philosopher guy who wrote this whole pretentious poem about how enlightened he was that was like “the eight winds cannot move me” blahblahblah and he was really proud of it so he sent it to his friend who lived across the lake and then his friend sends it back and just writes “FART” (or the ancient Chinese equivalent) on it and he was SO MAD he travels across the lake to chew his friend out and when he gets there his friend says “wow. the eight winds cannot move you, but one fart sends you across the lake”

i googled this bc i desperately wanted this to be real, and guess what…it is.

the dude’s name was su dongpo (also known as su shi). his original poem went like this:





(Humbly bowed my head below all skies
Minutest lights shine through my deepest bounds
Immovable by strong winds from eight sides
Upon purplish gold lotus I seated straightly by the low mound) (x)

on which his friend wrote “放屁” (fart, literally), and you know the rest.

(here’s a chinese source for the skeptics)

can you imagine having your brutal murder described in detail to future generations

this is my new favourite story from history

Just an addition: “fart” also is slang for “bullshit” in Chinese, so his friend was basically writing “BS” on the dude’s ego poem

Aphantasia: How It Feels To Be Blind In Your Mind

Aphantasia: How It Feels To Be Blind In Your Mind



I found these tags on that post asking adults to list their age. This is one of many who seem to agree with OP’s sentiment.

I think kids on the internet these days–and by “kids” I mean anyone under 18 honestly–need to be re-taught about internet safety and keeping your personal life away from your internet life, for safety reasons. I’ve been noticing this a lot lately, but I’ve found that the younger generations just never learned about Internet safety and keeping your personal information… well, personal.

Listen. I am a 90s kid in my late 20s. Yes, I do list my age on my description, because I feel comfortable doing so. But lately, there’s been an alarming trend where you, the younger generations, expect us to cater to all of your needs and keep you safe. And more, even.

The internet is a big, scary place. People my age and older, and some a little younger, grew up with the internet. We grew up with the dial-up noise and “get off the internet so I can use the phone!” and being limited in the way we interacted with the internet because it was expensive and strange and modems were not a thing. We also grew up with massive internet safety campaigns and worried parents scared of the unknown. Scared of the predator on the other side of the screen. It was normal for parents to be worried and assume predator until proven otherwise. 

As such, everyone in my generation and older grew up with a massive internet safety awareness. Don’t give out your personal information, don’t tell them where you live, your name, your age, where you study or what. Say nothing. Share nothing. Most of us have created for ourselves internet personas, much in the way that I am Saku on the internet but someone else in real life.

Yes, the line has blurred somewhat, and over time people have lost the alarm and concern that the internet caused in them. But most of us still remember what it was like back then. Most of us remember the safety rules, remember the techniques and tactics to tell if someone was or wasn’t telling the truth, remember the golden rule about not sharing personal information on the internet.

Because the internet back then was a big, scary place. And the internet now? It still is a big, scary place. It’s just more…. normal. More a part of our everyday lives that we all just sort of take for granted. 

What you kids are missing now is that we, as the older generations on the internet, the generations that grew up with the internet, still remember what it was like back then. And we still abide by our internet safety rules.

You all may think that sharing your age on the internet is not a big deal, but it is. Whatever you post on the internet can be used against you, regardless of how “safe” you feel. And one way or another, we are not responsible for you or your internet experiences. We protected ourselves back then, we policed and monitored our own internet content and use, and so should you.

The internet is not yours, it’s all of ours. And we got here first, way before you were even born, in some cases. I’ve been on the internet since I was 9, and that’s well over a decade and a half ago. If anything, fandom spaces are made up primarily of adults. Who do you think writes the good content that you consume? Who do you think produces the best art and the best fics? Who do you think writes the well-written, hot, sexy smut you shouldn’t be reading at 3 in the morning?

When we got here, we all assumed that everyone was older than us on the internet. For some reason that’s changed, and now people assume that everyone’s younger, or their age. But we’re all still here. We’ve been here for the past 15, 20 years. Even longer.

There is nothing wrong with us. We don’t owe you anything. You make your own safety on the internet, and you are the one responsible for making sure you’re safe. That’s not on us, it’s on you. 

If you’re uncomfortable talking to an adult on the internet, then you’re more than welcome to unfollow, or block, or whatever. But it’s not our responsibility that you do so. If you want to know something, ask.

Most importantly, we’re not all predators. Don’t shame or fault us for existing on the Internet. We were here before you, and we enjoy things just as you do. They aren’t yours, you don’t own them any more than we do. And we have a right to be here too, without having to bend over backwards for you just for existing.

Please stay safe on the Internet, folks!