By Rachael Dory
The Japanese language apparently really likes using cats in their proverbs – a couple of editions ago, I explored “猫の手も借りたい！/Neko no te mo karitai”. Today, we’re returning to one of the many cat 諺 [kotowaza] that are sprinkled throughout the Japanese language:
猫舌 [neko-jita/”cat’s tongue”]
Japanese use this phrase to describe having a temperature-sensitive tongue, particularly to hot food/drink. Someone who is particularly bad with hot foods or drinks [note: not spicy foods] has a 猫舌. This 諺 came about from the observation that cats themselves have fairly temperature-sensitive tongues (you learn something new every day, right? Or at least I did). So there you have it – cats not only can lend a helping hand, but can sympathize with those with wussy tongues. If that isn’t camaraderie, I don’t know what is.