今日（きょう）のトピック は、いろいろな色（いろ）に関（かん）する慣用句（かんようく）や 表現（ひょうげん）を みてみましょう。
We are going to explore more idioms and expressions related to different colors!
Today, however, we will focus on just 2 colors that are very important to Japanese people: blue and red.
Let’s start with the color blue or 青 in Japanese
青 is one of the 4 basic colors that have been recognized by the Japanese since ancient times.
The 4 basic colors are 青（あお）- blue、赤（あか）- red、黒（くろ）- black and 白（しろ） – white.
It is said that in ancient Japan, people didn’t have words to describe other colors than those 4 basic colors because there was no need until approximately the Heian period which dates back to 782 CE when the arts and cultures started to really bloom and they started making beautiful kimono dyed in different colors using plants and stones.
That is why these are the only colors that are used as i-adjectives as well as nouns. For example:
青（あお） − 青い
赤（あか） − 赤い
黒（くろ） − 黒い
白（しろ） − 白い
So back in ancient times, all the colors that are not distinct like red, black, or white, and something rather pale or faint were all included in the category of blue color.
That being said, let’s dive into idioms using the color 青（あお）.
Like I said ancient Japanese had only limited words to cover various colors, traditionally the word 青（あお） also refers to green color which is now called 緑（みどり）.
So the image of 青（あお） is something pale, faint, fresh, young, and immature. For example, some fruits like strawberries or bananas when it’s green, it’s not ripe and sweet- because it’s not ready.
So when we say someone is 青（あお）い, it means he or she is not full-fledged, still got lots of things to learn.
You still got a long way to go.
Interestingly, there is another expression similar to this which is:
尻（しり） means “butt”, so 尻（しり）が青い means one’s butt is blue. Well, what’s that supposed to mean?
Have you ever heard of Mongolian spots? If you are Asian, maybe. It’s called 蒙古斑（もうこはん） in Japanese.
It’s a blue spot that appears on an Asian baby’s back or butt area.
Those spots start to appear when the baby is one to four weeks old and naturally disappear when they become a little older.
So 尻（しり）が青い refers to someone who’s got a baby butt meaning still immature or not experienced.
We have different varieties in the same meaning.
It also means an immature person.
This is like a modest thing that a Japanese parent would say about his son. My son is still developing, he’s not fully mature.
It literally means to smell blue or green
This can be used in 2 ways:
For example, you made a smoothie but it tastes too green or too bitter, you can describe it by saying:
However, the figurative meaning would be “to be naive”.
One of your friends wants to be a musician and decided to quit his school to pursue a career in the music industry. You can say to another friend by way of gossiping:
Looks like Takeshi is gonna quit his school to become a musician. He’s acting so naive. I wonder if he’s gonna be ok in the future.
It means to turn blue which means to become scared or to be shocked.
I got shocked by the news that my father had been hospitalized.
With relation to this expression, we have a funny proverb that says:
Because apples are considered to be very good for our body thus eating it regularly makes us healthy. So when apples turn red and become ripe and ready to pick, the doctors turn blue because there’s no more patient!
Next, let’s talk about red, 赤（あか）
This color is of course close to the heart of a lot of Japanese people since it’s used in our national flag the rising sun or 日の丸（ひのまる） in Japanese. In our national flag, a red circle symbolizing the sun is depicted on a white backdrop.
And the color red is considered to be very festive in our culture. So whenever we want to celebrate for some special occasions, we make red rice by adding red beans to rice and water in the pot so the rice turns out to be a pinkish color. This kind of rice is called 赤飯（せきはん） or お赤飯（せきはん） to be more polite.
The image of あか for the Japanese is something very vivid and clear and obvious. Therefore we have idioms related to this meaning.
It means a complete stranger
For example, you started talking with a stranger on the bus and a friend of yours saw you speaking with someone and ask you:
Do you know her?
You may reply:
No, I don’t know her. She’s a complete stranger.
真っ赤（まっか） means deep and bright red.
Since I walked in the snow, my cheeks turned all red.
嘘（うそ） means lie
So the deep red lie means a complete lie
He was boasting that he got a 100 mark in the exams, but it turned out to be a complete lie.
It means to turn red
When you feel shy or embarrassed, your cheeks turn reddish so 赤くなる it basically means “to blush”.
I blushed when the teacher praised me in class.
You can also make fun of someone who’s blushing by saying:
どうしたの？赤（あか）くなっちゃって！ What’s going on? You are blushing!
I hope you found these idioms interesting. Let me know if you want to know more idioms related to other colors.
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