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Question about usage of しまう

Cassidy

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Right now I'm working through Nihongo-Sou-Matome for JLPT N3. I recently came across an example sentence that I'm a little confused by. The sentence is:
試験が終わった!今日は飲んじゃおう!
I get that this means: The test is done! Let's drink today!
What I'm confused about is that I thought that しまうwas only used for expressing regret at doing something (for example, ケーキを全部食べちゃった - I ate all the cake (yikes)) or saying that you did something completely (for example, 宿題をやっちゃった - I did all of my homework).
So in this example, what does 飲んじゃおう mean? Does it suggest that the drinking will be regretted later?
 

Buntaro

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Cassidy,

I would not say that しまう is mainly used for expressing regret at doing something. To me, it is more like, something is gone and we cannot bring it back.

In the example ケーキを全部食べちゃった, the cakes are completely gone, with しまう/ ちゃう/ちゃった expressing the idea that there are no more cakes.

For me, the sentence 今日は飲んじゃおう! is more like, “I am going to drink until I can’t drink any more!” or perhaps, “I am going to go out and get really drunk, no matter what!” or “I have decided to go out and get really drunk, and I will not go back on my decision!”

Yes, there is a sense of regret in all of these examples, but I do not see this is the main meaning of しまう.
 
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Cassidy

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Cassidy,

I would not say that しまう is mainly used for expressing regret at doing something. To me, it is more like, something is gone and we cannot bring it back.

In the example ケーキを全部食べちゃった, the cakes are completely gone, with しまう/ ちゃう/ちゃった expressing the idea that there are no more cakes.

For me, the sentence 今日は飲んじゃおう! is more like, “I am going to drink until I can’t drink any more!” or perhaps, “I am going to go out and get really drunk, no matter what!” or “I have decided to go out and get really drunk, and I will not go back on my decision!”

Yes, there is a sense of regret in all of these examples, but I do not see this is the main meaning of しまう.

Ahhh that helps a lot! Thanks for your answer!
 

Toritoribe

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Right now I'm working through Nihongo-Sou-Matome for JLPT N3. I recently came across an example sentence that I'm a little confused by. The sentence is:
試験が終わった!今日は飲んじゃおう!
I get that this means: The test is done! Let's drink today!
What I'm confused about is that I thought that しまうwas only used for expressing regret at doing something (for example, ケーキを全部食べちゃった - I ate all the cake (yikes)) or saying that you did something completely (for example, 宿題をやっちゃった - I did all of my homework).
So in this example, what does 飲んじゃおう mean? Does it suggest that the drinking will be regretted later?
~てしまう indeed expresses "regret", not "completion", in that case. The speaker thinks "to drink" is not a good thing, so uses ~てしまう. In fact, 飲んじゃおう sounds to have a nuance of "to drink heavily" there.

"Regret" and "completion" are two different meanings of this expression. There is no problem to use ~てしまう when it's "regret" but not "completion", for instance, ダイエットしてたのに、ケーキを一口食べちゃった。 "While I'm on a diet, I ate a bite of cake..." The rest of the cake still remains in this case.

Also, the volitional form expresses the speaker's intention "I'm going to~" there, not invitation "let's".
 
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