Sunday, February 6, 2011


習字の先生 also taught me a new word—that is, she used it to describe one of my strokes in tensho and, when I asked what it meant, suggested I ask 日本語の先生 about it. The word was さりげなく, which seems to mean that I wasn't paying enough attention to the ending of my stroke. That sounds like me; I tend to keep thinking about the next stroke, rather than "being in the moment" with the stroke I'm actually doing. (One of the many reasons why studying shuuji is good for me.)

さりげ contains two kanji, first 然る and then 気. 然り気ない、然り気無い、然り気無く。 The dictionaries translate it as "nonchalant(ly)". Unconcerned; in a casual manner. I admit I sometimes become impatient when kanji have many strokes. Kaisho is like that; sometimes I dread even starting a page of characters, because it'll be dozens of strokes before I've finished, each presenting a fresh opportunity for total failure. In most examples of 鳥 in tensho there are multiple "feathers" that descend from the right side in parallel—nowhere near as dynamic as sousho or even kaisho! But not being 然り気無い is something I need to work on, like not rushing my strokes.

(I wondered where I'd seen 然. Probably in 全然! Zen-zen is like "not at all", the first kanji being "everything" and the second, さる, being something like "-like".)

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