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Having a High Head:



zu ga takai


There are times when you are better off to quit when you're ahead, because a situation or a person is very difficult to handle. Seki no yama 関の山 describes a situation in which even the best effort will result in either a maintenance of the status quo, or possibly a deterioration in conditions:


Japanese have a strong sense of hierarchy, and expect that the appropriate degree of respect will be shown to persons holding a high rank, especially in a company setting. A new employee who behaves arrogantly in the workplace without taking the time to pay his or her dues will meet with resentment:


Example 1:


Fujita-kun wa shinnyuu-shain no kuse ni zu ga takai.

"For a new employee, Fujita is rather arrogant."


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 Example 2:


Shachoo ni taishite sonna zu no takai iikata o shite wa ikemasen.

"You must not speak to the company president in such an arrogant manner."


Notes: 新入社員(しんにゅしゃいん) new employee / 社長 (しゃちょう) company president /  い言い方 (いいかた) manner of speaking