Spirited away (千と千尋の神隠し Sen to chihiro no kami kakushi) is a very popular animation from Studio Ghibli. We will learn some Japanese from Ghibli anime again (Last time, it was Kiki's Delivery Service). I will pick Lin’s speech because she is a boyish girl, and I think it is going to be fun to learn those types of expressions!

First, I will give you a quick summary of this movie: [ Spoiler Alert! ]

Chihiro and her parents accidentally discover the spirit world and her parents are changed to pigs by a spell. Chihiro tries to break the spell, but she has to meet a witch for that. The witch is in control in this world, and she also runs the hot spring house. Chihiro has to get a job first in order to change her parents back from pigs to humans, because a person who does not have a job cannot be allowed to remain in the spirit world. Chihiro meet some kind people who try to help her, and she manages to get a job. Lin is one of the people who stands by Chihiro’s side. Several unusual things happen, but Chihiro gets mentally stronger day by day. Those unusual things are very interesting in this movie. Because of a lot of help, Chihiro finally breaks the spell at the end, and goes back home with her parents.


ヤバイ Yabai

When Lin meets Chihiro for the first time, Lin is surprised and says:



Uwa! Ningen ga icha… yabai yo


In this sentence, I would like to focus on how to use ヤバイ because we use it a lot in casual conversation. That word has some different meanings.

The first meaning, we can use in a very bad situation to mean “inconvenient”, “dangerous” or “troublesome”. You can also translate it as “oh no”, or “shit!”



Yabai! Nebou shita!
Oh shit! I overslept!



Shiken benkyou shinakatta. Yabai…
I didn’t study for the exam. It’ll be hard...

The other meaning, we can use in a very good situation. So, it becomes “awesome”, “cool” or “amazing”.



Kono keeki, yabai
This cake is very delicious.


Kare, yabai
He is so cool.

We say ヤバイ only to close friends. So, please be careful when you use it; it is slang.


オレ Ore

Back to Lin’s speech, the meaning of what she says is:

“Oh my…there is a human… It’ll be trouble”.

When Chihiro somehow gets a job, Lin is surprised and happy. She said:



Wakan nai koto wa ore ni kike


Look at the sentence. It sounds like mens’ speech. But again, she is a boyish girl, so girls can also say sentences like that. オレ means “I” or “me” and is basically used by men. When a girl says オレ, she says it as a joke, and it sounds a little cute.

The meaning of the sentence is:

“Ask me if you have any questions. Okay?”



Ore, ganbaru!
I’ll do my best!



Nanka attara, enryo naku ore ni tayotte iizo

If something happens, you can count on me without reserve.



かっぱらってきた Kapparatte kita

At night, Lin grabbed some food when people finished their work and said:



Kuu? Kapparatte kita


かっぱらう means “steal” or "to swipe", so she stole some food for Chihiro and herself. 食う is a rough speech of 食べる (taberu). The meaning of sentence is:

“You want some? I stole food.”



Jitensha kapparatte kita
I stole a bicycle.


Onee-chan no youfuku kapparatte kita
I stole my older sister’s clothes.

Especially if you are a girl, it will be useful to understand not only feminine expressions, but masculine ones as well!