しかしとりすましてパンツ濡らし 天は雨を降らし 餓鬼はガンジャ吹かし
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Lyrics: Mukai Shutoku
Translation: Alex Fyffe and Yumi Hori
Present day. This goes out to the delusive people living in the frozen city
We are drunk. It’s a translucent 46 degrees again today
According to Hagakure theory, the barked Num-Ami-Dabutz
is a victory – we celebrate a song about the transience of life
Disregard those who deride the end of sympathy
I need to raise my concentration to the extreme. I need to study the newspaper when I eat.
I don’t need to take midterm exams. I don’t need to participate in military drills
I don’t have to listen to Red Army propaganda. I don’t have to sing about my tranquil life.
Those of you frightened by acute angles cover your ears now.
For I am an advocate of electric chaos who mutters words that pour out of my brain, eroded by alcohol poisoning,
empty and ambiguous.
I went out for a walk in the frozen city at 6:30
I’ve had it with these people sticking their genitals together in broad daylight.
Women are shamed and made self-conscious by penetrating eyes
but they keep a straight face as their panties get wet, rain falls from the sky, kids smoke ganja.
And yet we carry on with our orderly little lives here in the frozen city
Living in the frozen city, he disappears
This is another Number Girl song I attempted to translate in 2006, but I don’t think I completed this final version until 2008. The song was far beyond my abilities to translate in my first year of Japanese, and I only came to understand it through a literal translation given to me by Yumi. I worked on it off and on, and finally, after translating several other songs in the meantime, I decided to finish “Num-Ami-Dabutz,” one of the first Number Girl songs (along with “I don’t know”) that I ever heard. I also posted these lyrics to a YouTube video that, surprisingly, still exists today.
Num-Ami-Dabutz (namu amida butsu) is a religious phrase that Buddhists chant to Buddha Amitabha. Hagakure is a guide by samurai Yamamoto Tsunetomo (1659-1719) that outlines his theories about the way of the warrior (bushido).