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Isso hajime kara yarinaoshitara?

(Why don’t you start all over?)

 

Situation 1: Mr. Mita and Ms. Gray are having trouble with their presentation.

三田:これじゃ、だめだ。この商品のよさが伝わらないよ。

グレイ:うーん、いっそはじめからやり直したら?

Mita: Kore ja, dame da. Kono shōhin no yosa ga tsutawaranai yo.

Gurei: Ūn, isso hajime kara yarinaoshitara?

Mita: This is no good. It doesn’t convey the benefits of this product.

Gray: Hmm, why don’t we start over?

 

The adverb いっそ means “rather,” “sooner” or “preferably,” and it carries the nuance of making a daring decision. The sentence after the clause that contains いっそ expresses the speaker’s will, desire, advice or judgement:

そんなに毎日(まいにち)ケンカしているのなら、いっそ離婚(りこん)したほうがいいよ。(If you’re going to be arguing like that every day, you’re better off divorcing.)

The phrase いっそのこと is a more emphasized way of expressing the same idea of daring to do something, but it is often used to exaggerate the feeling of desperation, and is not realistic:

あんな人(ひと)に謝(あやま)るくらいなら、いっそ死(し)んでしまいたい。(I’d rather die than apologize to that person.)

 

Situation 2: Mr. Ueno is chatting with Mr. Sere, his junior colleague.

上野:思い切って一戸建てを買うことにしたんだ。まあ、郊外の中古住宅だけどね。

セレ:わあ、そうですか。家も広くなって、ゆったり暮らせますね。

Ueno: Omoikitte ikkodate o kau koto ni shita-n da. Mā, kōgai no chūko jūtaku dakedo ne.

Sere: Wā, sō desu ka. Ie mo hiroku natte, yuttari kurasemasu ne.

Ueno: I made the bold decision to buy a house. Well, it’s a used house in the suburbs, though.

Sere: Wow, is that so? That extra space must mean you can live more comfortably.

 

The adverb 思(おも)い切(き)って can mean “drastically” or “daringly,” or even an idea that someone will “take the plunge” and do something. It is often used when someone decides to take bold action. It tends to have a positive meaning:

バンジージャンプはこわかったが、思い切って飛(と)んだら、すごく気持(きも)ちがよかった。(I was afraid of the bungee jump, but I took the plunge and jumped, and it felt so good.)

 

Bonus Dialogue: Mr. Mita and Mr. Sere are chatting about their plans for Christmas.

三田:今年(ことし)もゆりちゃんと一緒(いっしょ)にクリスマスを過(す)ごすんだろう? もうずいぶん長(なが)いよね。

セレ:うん。…それで、いっそのこと、今(いま)の仕事(しごと)をやめて、ゆりを連(つ)れて国(くに)へ帰(かえ)ろうかと思ったんだ。コロナのことで、いろいろ考(かんが)えさせられたし。国の友(とも)だちが、自分(じぶん)の会社(かいしゃ)に来(こ)ないかって誘(さそ)ってくれたんだ。

三田:へーえ、そうなんだ!…で、ゆりに言(い)ったの?

セレ:うん。ゆりはOKしてくれた。思い切って新(あたら)しいところへ行(い)けば、新しい生活(せいかつ)ができそうだって、とっても乗り気(のりき)なんだ。それに、ウェブデザイナーだから、パソコンがあれば、どこでも仕事ができるし。

三田:そうなんだ…。それはよかったね!おめでとう。それはほんとによかったよ。

セレ:ありがとう。三田(みた)くんやみんなと別(わか)れるのは、とっても残念(ざんねん)なんだけど。

三田:ぼくもセレくんと別れるのは、つらいよ。でも、セレくんの未来(みらい)を考(かんが)えたら、喜(よろこ)んで祝福(しゅくふく)するよ。

セレ:三田くん、そんなに泣(な)くなよ。ぼくも泣けてくるよ。

Mita: You’re going to be spending Christmas with Yuri again this year right? You’ve been together for a long time.

Sere: Yeah … On that, I thought I’d better quit my current job, and take her back to my home country. COVID-19 has made me think a lot. A friend of mine back home asked me if I wanted to join his company.

Mita: Oh, really! … So, did you say something to her yet?

Sere: Yeah. She said OK. She was really enthusiastic about daring to go to a new place and starting a new life. Besides, she’s a web designer, so she can work anywhere as long as she has a computer.

Mita: Really…. That’s great! Congratulations! I’m really happy to hear it.

Sere: Thank you. But it’s very unfortunate that I have to part with you and everyone else.

Mita: I feel sad about saying goodbye too. But, thinking about your future, I’m happy to congratulate you.

Sere: Mita, don’t cry like that. You’ll make me cry too.

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