うらやましい

Let your green-eyed monster loose with ‘urayamashii’

BY AKEMI TANAHASHI AND HITOMI TASHIRO

Hē, ii-nā. Urayamashii. (Oh, that’s great. I’m jealous!)

Situation 1: Mr. Mita and his colleague Mr. Sere are chatting about their client.

三田: CT社のラジャさん、3週間休暇を取って、ヨーロッパに旅行に行くんだって。

セレ: へえ、いいなあ。うらやましい。うちの会社もそれぐらい休めるといいのに。

Mita: CT-sha-no Raja-san, sanshūkan kyūka-o totte, Yōroppa-ni ryokō-ni iku-n-datte.

Sere: Hē, ii-nā. Urayamashii. Uchi-no kaisha-mo sore-gurai yasumeru-to ii-noni.

Mita: I heard that Mr. Raja from CT company is taking a three-week vacation and going on a trip to Europe.

Sere: Oh, that’s great. I’m jealous! I wish I could take such a long vacation from my job.

Today we introduce the proper use of the adjective うらやましい, meaning “jealous” or “envious,” and some related expressions. うらやましい is often used in daily conversation when the speaker wants to show their jealous feeling after hearing someone’s good news, and wishes they were in the same situation. Example: A: 「あした、接待(せったい)でレストラン・キタザワに行くんだ。」 B: 「へえ、うらやましい 。あそこはなかなか予約(よやく)が取(と)れ ないんだって。」 (A: “I’m going to entertain a client at Restaurant Kitazawa tomorrow.” B: “Oh, I’m jealous. I heard that it’s hard to get reservations there, right?”). うらやましい is used in the pattern “X (verb, adjective or noun sentence in plain form) なんて、うらやましい,” and it shows the speaker’s longing feeling for someone’s lucky situation. X is someone’s situation or action. Example: あんなにかっこよくて頭(あたま)がいいなんて、うらやましいなあ。 (He/She is so good-looking and bright. I’m jealous!)

Situation 2: Ms. Okubo is chatting with Ms. Ogawa, who had her second child a month ago.

小川: 下の子が生まれたら、上の子が赤ちゃんみたいになっちゃったの。

大久保: きっとやきもちを焼いているのよ。上の子も同じようにかわいがってあげれば、だいじょうぶ。

Ogawa: Shita-no ko-ga umaretara, ue-no ko-ga akachan-mitai-ni natchatta-no.

Okubo: Kitto yakimochi-o yaite-iru-noyo. Ue-no ko-mo onaji yo¯-ni kawaigatte-agereba, daijo¯bu.

Ogawa: My eldest has been acting like a baby since my second baby was born.

Okubo: I guess he feels jealous of the baby. If you love him the same way as you do your baby, he’ll be all right.

やきもちを焼(や)く is a colloquial set phrase that expresses that someone feels jealous toward someone else. やきもちを焼(や)く implies a negative feeling, and is mainly used for jealousy in love. 嫉妬(しっと)する (to feel jealous/envious) is a more bookish negative expression and expresses jealousy in general. Example: 姉(あね)たちはシンデレラが美人(びじん)なので、嫉妬している。 (The elder sisters feel jealous because Cinderella is a beautiful woman.)

Bonus Dialogue: Mr. Mita and his old pal Mr. Nakai are chatting.

三田: 中井(なかい)は仕事(しごと)で、世界中(せかいじゅう)いろいろなところに出張(しゅっちょう)に行(い)っているんだって?いろいろなところに行けるなんて、うらやましいなあ。

中井: でも、観光(かんこう)する時間(じかん)は全然 (ぜんぜん)ないんだ。

三田: そうか。でも、おいしいものは食(た)べられるんだろう? うやらましい身分(みぶん)だね。

中井: でも、仕事で食事(しょくじ)をすると、あまり楽(たの)しめないよ。

三田: そうか。いろいろ気(き)を使(つか)わなければならないしね。

中井: それにいいポジションにいると、周(まわ)りの人(ひと)から嫉妬(しっと)されることもあって、なかなか大変(たいへん)なんだ。

三田: ああ、男(おとこ)の嫉妬は、女(おんな)よりこわい って言(い)うし。

中井: まあまあのところで、気楽(きらく)に暮(く)らせるのなら、それはうらやましいよ。

三田: そうかなあ。ぜんぜん実感(じっかん)がないけどなあ。

Sere: I heard you go to lots of places around the world for business. I’m jealous that you get to go to many places.

Sere: But I get no time for sightseeing.

Mita: Really? But, you get to eat good things, right? You’re in an enviable position.

Sere: But, I can’t really enjoy meals when I’m working.

Mita: I see. I guess you have to watch how you behave.

Sere: Besides, as I’m in a good position, it can be tough because people around me feel jealous.

Mita: Ah, and they say that the jealousy of men is more scary than that of women.

Sere: If you can live comfortably in an average position, then I’m jealous.

Mita: Is that so? I’ve never felt that way myself.

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