Confusable Words: Rarely used katakana words
This is not a list of mistaken Japanese-English words. These common katakana words are English but they are rarely used in English. It’s probably better to avoid using these:
クラクション horn (for a car), though people often use the work klaxon for a kind of siren, often heard in movies before a building explodes or other such imminent danger. “Klaxon” is actually a trademark.
スコール (rain)shower, heavy rain, rain storm. “Squall” is not a very familiar word.
マンション apartment building, apartment (US), block of flats, flat (UK), condominium, condo – The meaning of “mansion” has changed over time. Some older apartment buildings in London still have the name “XXX Mansions”, as can be seen in the Poirot TV series, but nowadays we never use it to mean one single flat/apartment. A “mansion” is now a very big stately country house. See this Wikipedia page for pictures.
ペンション guest house, B&B – though “pension” is used for continental Europe (mainland Europe) guest houses. Most English speakers only know “pension” to mean 年金.
マンツーマン person-to-person, one-to-one – though man-to-man is used in an aggressive meaning, like a fight. For example: “Let’s settle this now, man-to-man!”
I will add more when I think of some. If you have any ideas please let me know.