Takevotu

Glyph of the word 'takevotu'.

takevotu

  • (n.) boyfriend

Ai takevotu oi’ia i emi ai?
“And who’s your boyfriend?”

Notes: The past couple words have been fotu and tuli: words for “husband” and “wife”, respectively, that don’t enjoy much regular use. Today’s word does, though.

This is the basic word for “boyfriend” and it means, literally, something like “pretend husband” or “practice husband” or maybe even “trial husband”. And that’s how the Kamakawi see it. The “dating” or “courtship” phase is trying people out: Seeing how they might fit as a spouse, and, at the same time, learning how to be a spouse, in a non-permanent, non-binding way.

Incidentally, in Kamakawi it’s bad luck to marry your first ever boyfriend or girlfriend. It happens, certainly (what society is uniform?), but it’s regarded with suspicion (perhaps something like a Hollywood marriage, where everyone wonders when it will end). The idea is that your first sees you before you’re ready—before you become who you’re going to become—and general consensus is that such marriages can never last.

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