Curious Question on Japan 4. 本音と建前

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May 13, 2010 05:40
I think people from other countries who know well about Japan are familiar with the words, "Honne" and "Tatemae" and they might be very important to go along with Japanese people.

Here is a question from a foreigner.

日本人を誘ったら「また今度」と言われました。「今度」っていつですか。
When I proposed getting together over something to a Japanese, he answered "Sorry, the next time."
Sure. But... For which days will that be?

「また今度」は相手の面子(めんつ)に配慮した婉曲(えんきょく)的な断り方ですから、今度はないかもしれません。
The answering like "Next time" is sometimes a kind of way to refuse, avoiding others from getting into feeling bad.

将来、縁があったら、という意味です。
You can take it as the matter of opportunity you would have a chance.

In Japan, there seems to be a culture of that when we would like to reject someone's suggestion, we easily use the word, 又の機会にね meaning next time, even if we have no mind to want to do.

How will that make us look?
I wonder whther it is a Japanese good mannar to care others or a bad behaver.