New trends in language pop-up all the time. Lately, young folks in Japan have started using the initials of Japanese terms written in English letters. Here are three phrases which I’ve learned recently.

KY – kuuki ga yomenai (空気が読めない) can’t read the air

JK – joshi koukousei (女子高校生) high school girl

BM – baka marudashi (馬鹿丸出し) total idiot

Could you follow all that? OK, I mislead you a little on KY. In this case kuuki doesn’t mean ‘air’; more like ‘mood’ or ‘atmosphere’. The person who is at a funeral cracking jokes is KY. Don’t think you have to learn these to get by here. If you use them a lot, you’ll probably sound like a JK.


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