YAPOOS – ANTI ENNUI (1991)

lyrics by JUN TOGAWA | music by TOSHIRO SENSUI

One of the difficulties of translating some Japanese songs, especially from the 80s and 90s, is the prevalence of incorrect aesthetic English. This leads to a dilemma for the translator – do you respect the intention of the author and leave the words as is, even if they’re incorrect, or do you change them in order to render them understandable for the reader? I end up going for the first, but I think it all comes down to what you think.

The reason I bring this up is because this song, while solid, contains the English lyric “I’m not born to ennui tasty,” the meaning of which I have yet to ascertain. If you figure that out let me know.

Translation and notes under the cut:

Careless and filled with ennui
Please forgive my listlessness
I’M NOT BORN TO ennui TASTY (1)

For example, the speed of falling dominoes
The excitement from the weight of a Luger
And dropping fresh banknotes, sharp enough
To cut a cashier’s finger off, that’s what I like

Days of thrills and horror, like a B-movie
Dangerous, but the night is quiet
So wonderful that I can’t get to sleep

AH dandyism is a solid life

Anti-ennui – yes, more or less
It’s tough, you know?
TALKIN’ ‘BOUT MY GENERATION AHA (2)
I’ve already forgotten what ‘boring’ means
UNH And thrills, well? I’ve never been hungry

Careless and filled with ennui
Please forgive my listlessness
I’M NOT BORN TO ennui TASTY

For example, the speed of falling dominoes
The excitement from the weight of a Luger
And dropping fresh banknotes, sharp enough
To cut a cashier’s finger off, that’s what I like

Days of thrills and horror, like a B-movie
Dangerous, but the night is quiet
So wonderful that I can’t get to sleep

AH dandyism is a solid life


1: As stated earlier, I have no idea what this is supposed to mean.

2: A reference to, obviously, “My Generation” by The Who.

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