I am a Cat (Chapter 5 a) Section 150 Study Guide

Practice text with full furigana

「それで盗難とうなんかかったのは何時なんじごろですか」と巡査じゅんさ無理むりこと時間じかんわかくらいならにもぬすまれる必要ひつようはないのである。それにかぬ主人しゅじん夫婦ふうふはしきりにこの質問しつもんたいして相談そうだんをしている。

「何時頃かな」

「そうですね」と細君さいくんかんがえる。考えれば分るとおもっているらしい。

「あなたはゆう何時に御休おやすみになったんですか」

おれのは御前おまえよりあとだ」

「ええわたくせったのは、あなたよりまえです」

めたのは何時だったかな」

しちはんでしたろう」

「すると盗賊とうぞく這入はいったのは、何時頃になるかな」

「なんでもなかでしょう」

夜中よなかは分りきっているが、何時頃かとんだ」

「たしかなところはよくかんがえてないと分りませんわ」と細君はまだ考えるつもりでいる。巡査はただ形式的けいしきてき聞いたのであるから、いつ這入ったところが一向いっこう痛痒つうようかんじないのである。うそでも何でも、いい加減かげん事をこたえてくれればと思っているのに主人夫婦が要領ようりょうない問答もんどうをしているものだから少々しょうしょうれたくなったと見えて

「それじゃ盗難の時刻じこく不明ふめいなんですな」と云うと、主人はれいのごとき調子ちょうし

「まあ、そうですな」と答える。巡査はわらいもせずに

「じゃあね、明治めいじ三十さんじゅうはちねん何月なんがつ何日なんにち戸締としまをして寝たところが盗賊が、どこそこ雨戸あまどはずしてどこそこにしのんで品物しなもの何点なんてんぬすんでったからみぎ告訴こくそにおよびそうろうなりという書面しょめんしなさいとどけではない告訴です。名宛なあてはないほうがいい」

「品物は一々いちいちかくんですか」

「ええ羽織はおり何点なんてん代価だいかいくらと云うふうおもてにして出すんです。――いや這入って見たって仕方しかたがないられたあとなんだから」と平気へいき事を云ってかえって

Rough translation

"In that case, at about what time would you say the theft occurred?" The officer poses a problematic question. If they'd known what time they'd been robbed, then they needn't have been robbed in the first place. The master and his wife, failing to grasp as much, work to formulate a response.

"About what time was it?"

"I wonder." The wife ponders the question. She seems to imagine she can somehow reason it out.

"When did you go to bed last night?"

"After you."

"Yes, I was in bed before you were."

"When was it we woke?"

"It must have been around seven thirty."

"Then about what time would the burglar have made his entry?"

"It must have been during the night."

"Of course it was during the night. The question is what time."

"We'll need to think on it further before we can give you an answer." The wife is still working at it. The officer, who'd only asked as a matter of protocol, couldn't care less about the time of the theft. He'd gladly accept any arbitrary response, even a fabrication. The couple's rambling discourse is beginning to try his patience.

"Shall we just say then that the hour of the theft is uncertain?"

"That seems the case," the master replies in his characteristic manner.

"Well then, you'll need to file a formal written complaint, to the effect that on this thirty-eighth year of Meiji, such-and-such day of such-and-such month, after locking up and going to bed, a certain storm door was removed and entry gained through a certain entrance, with so many of such-and-such articles being taken from the premises. Label it a complaint, not a report. Address it against no one in particular," the officer instructed matter-of-factly.

"Do we need to list out each article taken?"

"Yes, in tabular format. For example, each article of clothing, along with its respective value. -- No, I don't need to survey the scene. What's gone is gone." The officer makes his exit with an air of indifference.

Vocabulary

盗難とうなん robbery; theftかかった suffered from; fell victim to何時なんじごろ about what time巡査じゅんさ police officer; policeman無理むりな unreasonableこと thing; mannerく ask; inquire時間じかん timeわかる know; be aware ofにも (no)thingぬすまれる have stolen必要ひつよう necessity; needかぬ not realize; fail to grasp主人しゅじん夫婦ふうふ the master and his wife質問しつもん questionたいして with respect to; regarding相談そうだん discussion 細君さいくん the wifeかんがえる consider; thinkおもっている believe; imagine ゆうべ last night御休おやすみになった went to bed; turned in おれ I; meた went to bed; turned in御前おまえ you わたくし I; meせった lay down; went to bed; retiredまえ before; prior めた woke しちはん seven thirty 盗賊とうぞく burglar; thief這入はいった entered なか middle of the night; during the night 夜中よなか middle of the night; during the nightう ask かんがえてないと without thinking through形式的けいしきてきに as a formality; as a matter of protocol一向いっこう (not) at all; (not) in the least痛痒つうようかんじない is not concerned with; has no interest inうそ falsehood; fabricationいい加減かげんな indiscriminate; arbitraryこたえて answer; respondい good; fine要領ようりょうない beside the point; clueless; missing the mark問答もんどう questions and answers; exchange少々しょうしょう a little; a bitれたくなった had grown impatient; had become annoyed 時刻じこく time; hour不明ふめい uncertain; unknownれいのごとき usual; characteristic調子ちょうし manner; vein わらいもせずに matter-of-factly 明治めいじ三十さんじゅうはちねん Meiji 38 (the year 1905)何月なんがつ such-and-such month何日なんにち such-and-such day戸締としまり locking up (doors and windows); fastening the doorsどこそこ such-and-such a place雨戸あまど sliding storm shutterはずして detach; removeしのんで sneak into; steal into品物しなもの articles; goods何点なんてん what number of; how manyぬすんでった made off with; stoleみぎ the foregoing告訴こくそ complaint; chargeにおよびそうろうなり has come to; has resulted in書面しょめん documentしなさい please submitとどけ report; notification名宛なあて addresseeほう alternative (of two choices) 一々いちいち one by one; each and every one 羽織はおり haori (Japanese half-coat)何点なんてん how many (items)代価だいか price; costふう manner; styleおもて table; chart; list仕方しかたがない is of no use; serves no purposeられた was taken平気へいきな cool; indifferent; unconcernedかえってく return; take one's leave