🚬Photo taken at JR Hokkaido Sapporo Station🚬
‘Smoke Here.’ X 😢
This English phrase means ここでタバコを吸いなさい (koko de tabako o suinasai)!
It just so happens that I quit smoking last year, so I was a bit surprised when I saw this… Does JR Hokkaido want me to start smoking again???
You won’t find many signs with English phrases like this other than in Japan. By the way, the verb “smoke” is used here in the imperative form, which isn’t a very friendly way to address your Hokkaido train passengers.
By taking one-to-one private conversation lessons at Mike’s English Class Sapporo, you can learn about and practice speaking the kinds of sentences and phrases that are actually being used in English-speaking countries.
―> Smoking Lounge √ 😇
Addendum: After this blog post became public and received coverage on a local Sapporo tv program called “Kyo-Doki,” JR Hokkaido replaced the sign with a pictogram sign containing no words. Although this solved the problem of using faulty English when you should have checked it first with someone who actually speaks the language, wordless pictograms such as JR Hokkaido’s replacement sign can be confusing and easily misinterpreted.
For example, visitors to Sapporo who see just the image used on the sign in the photo here might think that it’s saying, “Smoking Allowed (Wherever You Can See This Sign).”
The term ‘Smoking Lounge’ is used worldwide for such smoking booths and is readily understood by international travellers.
Watch the video here.
JR Hokkaido Sapporo Station (near the West Ticket Gate)📸🚬
Sapporo English Conversation Newsletter