A young female newscaster has recently been flamed for use of discriminatory language during a game of しりとり (shiritori*) on morning news and entertainment show “Zip!”
* Shiritori is a game where players take turn to say a word that begins with the last character of what the opponent says. For example, if player A starts with “ringo (apple),” player B has to come up with something that begins with “go” such as “gorudo (gold).” Then player A continues with a word that begins with “do” and so on, until either player says something that ends with “n” and loses. This is because no Japanese word begins with the “n (ん)” character.
Watch video below:
So what happened in the video was, Tokio bassist Yamaguchi Tatsuya starts the game rolling by saying “arumajiro (armadillo),” the girl on the right (Soda Marie) says “ronge (long hair).” Tatsuya goes, “Ge, ge, ge no Kitarou,” which is the name of a famous cartoon series, and Marie follows up with “ronpari,” when she should’ve said something that begins with “u.” But that’s not the main point. Why she chose “ronpari” of all words is unknown, but viewers were unhappy about it because the word is a discriminatory term used to describe people with strabismus, or heterotropia, a condition where both eyes are unable to focus on the same point. The word “ロンパリ (ronpari)” comes from the contraction of “ロンドン (London)” and “パリ (Paris)” to say people with strabismus having one eye looking at London and the other looking at Paris.
So if by any chance you come across this word, don’t try to practice using it.