Posts Tagged ‘caturday’

Puo

• Friday, March 9th, 2012

Glyph of the word 'puo'.

puo

  • (expr.) an answer to an unfair yes or no question (whether neither “yes” nor “no” is technically correct)
  • (n.) refusal

Puo.
“I refuse to answer the question.”

Notes: That, of course, is Keli’s answer to the question, “Are you still in our recycling box?” And she answers thus because it’s not a recycling box: It is a Kitty Fortress!

Keli in her new fortress.

She loves that box!

A word like puo is a useful word, because it allows one to answer questions like, “Are you still guilty?” Presuming you’ve never been guilty, an answer of “no” could mean, “No, I’m no longer guilty (but I once was)”, and answer of “yes” would, of course, be an admission of guilt. There’s not much you can do with that question in English. In Kamakawi, you can say puo.

The word was inspired by the Japanese word mu, which is used in the same way. I decided to go big tent with responses to questions in ol’ Kamakawi. Thus we have puo.


Fukave

• Friday, March 2nd, 2012

Glyph of the word 'fukave'.

fukave

  • (v.) to destroy (something inanimate)
  • (n.) destruction

I oloko ti’i, ae fukave iu lipo a…
“In my dream, I’m destroying boxes…”

Notes: HAPPY CATURDAY!!!!! :D

Keli loves to scratch up old boxes (and to bite on plastic, but she isn’t supposed to do that). Here she is all tuckered out:

Keli sleeping on Erin's lap.

Contained within today’s iku are the glyphs for fu, ka and fe. It’s a bit of a bonus that ka can double as the “bad” line determinative, and that it looks like an arrow pointing down. Unfortunately while this iku looks all right full size, in 12 pt, it looks like there’s a cartoonishly large arrow pointing downwards. Oh well.


Nuku

• Friday, February 24th, 2012

Glyph of the word 'nuku'.

nuku

  • (n.) a go-between for married couples

E kaneko ie nuku oieika
“The cat is our nuku.”

Notes: HAPPY CATURDAY!!! :D

Keli has a new chair, and she found herself a new little blanket to go with it:

Keli sleeping under a little pillow.

Today’s word is a unique one, I think. The word describes a person integral to Kamakawi marriage. See, when two Kamakawi get married, they have a nuku. This nuku is usually an older woman (though not always) who’s either a widow or has been married many years, and who usually is not directly related to either the bride or the groom. The job of the nuku (who doesn’t live with the couple, but drops by from time to time) is to not only help married people settle in to married life, but to covertly pass messages back and forth between couples—usually things that one doesn’t want to say to the other directly.

For example, let’s say the wife discovers that her husband snores loudly in his sleep, but doesn’t want to say anything. She tells the nuku privately, and then some time later (not the next day, but maybe a couple days later), the nuku comes by when just the husband is there and gives him several bits of advice. She might say, “Always rinse your hands after you’ve been cleaning fish”, and, “Don’t stomp around so loudly in the morning”, and, “Don’t eat opeope right before bed”, and, in addition to all that, “Don’t sleep flat on your back; you snore too loudly!” The husband won’t know which of those things is true, but he’ll know one of them probably came from his wife. Then it’s his job to try to take what advice he can and change things as he sees fit.

Now, due to the nature of their profession, the nuku has a lot of power, and must exercise caution and skill. So as not to be too obvious, the skilled nuku will often drop by with advice that wasn’t given by one or the other spouse. The best nuku will know both spouses well, and so will be able to figure out what advice makes sense for each one—and will also be able to dole it out efficiently over time so as to be able to couch all the real complaints in with the other advice. And, provided everything works out well, the nuku will eventually stop coming around often, and, finally, will simply be a friend of the family.

Of course, on account of the delicacy of their position, it’s pretty easy to be a bad nuku. The bad nuku won’t be able to disguise the true advice very well, which can lead to arguments or hurt feelings. But worse than that is the nuku who comes around too often (and at highly inconvenient times), and doesn’t know when to stop coming around (usually somewhere around year two, or after the first child has lived a full year). Then the nuku becomes a nuisance that the couple wishes to be rid of. Such a nuku is sometimes referred to (behind closed doors) as a paopu (“worm”), on account of the similarities between its iku and the iku for nuku.

Of course, the similarity between the two iku is entirely accidental. The iku for paopu is actually a combination of the iku for pa, o and pu (though it’s hard to tell at this stage). The iku for nuku is quite different.

In examining today’s iku, first take a look at the iku for ho, which is used to mean “man”. Keep that image in mind. That shape is the general shape used for a person (seen also in the iku for ei, “I”, and kupi, “sit”, among others). The iku for nuku actually has those shapes mirrored, facing each other. So rather than being built off pa, the triangle shape is an accident of the combination. The line in between the two essentially represents the nuku: the thing that’s in between the married couple.

And, of course, Keli has always served well in her role. We’re looking to keep her around for quite a while. :)


Noto

• Friday, February 17th, 2012

Glyph of the word 'noto'.

noto

  • (v.) to be shady
  • (adj.) shady, shade-giving
  • (n.) shade
  • (v.) to be cool (coll.)
  • (adj.) cool, awesome

Au noto kaneko!
“Cats are cool!”

Notes: HAPPY CATURDAY!!! :D

Here’s a picture of Keli greeting Erin’s fingertip:

Keli getting touched on the nose.

Today’s word means “shady”, but is used to mean “cool” by Kamakawi youth. I thought it was a pretty cool word for cool. I’d try to start using it in English, but I think it would give the wrong impression.


Lama

• Friday, February 10th, 2012

Glyph of the word 'lama'.

lama

  • (v.) to make (refers to small things)
  • (n.) construction, making
  • (adj.) made, constructed, built, produced

Mata ei ka lama ia i…toyuku.
“I see that you’ve made…something.”

Notes: HAPPY CATURDAY!!! :D

Today’s Caturday is bittersweet, as I am, sadly, without cat. :( I’m off away in the wilds of New Mexico, while Keli is at home with Erin. Before I left, though, I constructed her a little wall of books:

Keli beyond the Wall.

I imagine she’ll stay there for the duration of my absence.

Today’s word, though, really doesn’t apply to something like a wall (and its use in the sentence above is deprecatory). It really applies to something like handicrafts or trinkets—something that you make that can fit in the palm of your hand. I’m still not sure whether it would apply to biscuits… I know this is probably the first thing you thought of (biscuits are usually the first thing I think of when I hear the word “hand”), but the more complex the food, the more likely you’d use lama with it (provided the end result is handheld).

I’ll be returning tomorrow, but if you happen to be in Albuquerque and are reading this, come out to the Hyatt Regency around dinner time. I’ll be giving a talk there and we’ll be screening Episode 6 from last season of Game of Thrones. The cost is $5, but all the money is going to the local branch of the American Cancer Society, which is pretty cool.

Be sure to pet a cat today! The cat will likely appreciate it. :)


Mike

• Friday, February 3rd, 2012

Glyph of the word 'mike'.

mike

  • (n.) albatross

Oloko Keli ti mike.
“Keli is dreaming of an albatross.”

Notes: HAPPY CATURDAY!!! :D

Here’s the picture:

Keli sound asleep.

What a big bushy tail she has!

Anyway, regarding this entry, here’s how I imagine the conversation will go in the future:

Person: So you had a Kamakawi Word of the Day blog?

Me: Yeah.

Person: And Kamakawi has a word for “albatross”?

Me: Yeah.

Person: And you had an entry that featured Coleridge’s “Rime of the Ancient Mariner”?

Me: Yeah.

Person: So was that the entry for “albatross”?

Me: No.

Person:

Yeah. Oops. And now “albatross” is relegated to “afterthought” status. So it goes…


Payu

• Friday, January 27th, 2012

Glyph of the word 'payu'.

payu

  • (v.) to show, to display to
  • (n.) displaying, showing

Ai fulele ia ae mata ie palei li’i ai? Ale ko! He male payu ei i ia!
“You want to see my home? Come on in! I’ll show it to you!”

Notes: For a present, we got something in a brown paper bag. We set it on the ground, and Keli had found a new little home:

Keli hunkering down in a bag.

I suspected she would exit the bag if I approached her, so I took out my camera and started taking pictures from a distance, and continued to do so as I edged closer. This was the best of the bunch (since, indeed, she did exit the bag when I got closer).

Today’s word is built off the iku for moko (“eight”), but in this case, it’s actually serving the function of an ikunoala. See, the glyph for pa is an upside-down triangle, and the glyph for iu is a right-side-up triangle. By setting one above the other, you get payu. Of course, it couldn’t be identical to moko, so to disambiguate the pair, a notch was added to the top.


Nevi

• Friday, January 20th, 2012

Glyph of the word 'nevi'.

nevi

  • (v.) to give
  • (n.) giver
  • (n.) giving
  • (n.) beneficence, charity
  • (adj.) given
  • (nm.) a man or woman’s given name

A nevi ei i ia ti kaneko.
“I give you a cat.”

Notes: Sometimes things just fall neatly into place.

Today is, of course Caturday (HAPPY CATURDAY!!!). It also happens to be my birthday. As those who follow the blog know, I’ve been trying, recently, to focus on foma to try to finish presenting the rather large orthography of Kamakawi. Could there be some way to take care of all those things at once…?

Remembering that, for some crazy reason, I hadn’t yet done an entry for the word nevi (one of the oldest and most frequently-used Kamakawi words there is—and one of my favorites), I took a look at the entry, and found as a part of the entry the example sentence shown above.

And then looking through the pictures on my phone, I found this as one my most recent Keli pictures:

Keli emerging from a box.

Happy birthday to one and all! Your present is a cat! :D

The iku for nevi is built off the glyph for ne, with a little fi made out of the descending bill of the ne seagull. I didn’t think much of this iku at first (it looks slanted), but it’s grown on me. Now when I think of the concept “give”, I think of nevi.

Grammatically, the example sentence is not the usual way you’ll see nevi used. Usually nevi is used serially, with some sort of object from a previous clause taken over as the assumed “object” of nevi. In reality, the grammatical object of nevi is the recipient.

That said, in rare situations (can’t think of a context where this would be the natural form of expression), you can introduce the theme/patient of the verb nevi by means of the preposition ti (the leftover argument marker). And I’m sure that’s why I included the sample sentence I included in my dictionary/grammar document. Why it included cats? Well, they’re pretty outstanding, by all accounts. Had to give something. :)


Uoi

• Friday, January 13th, 2012

Glyph of the word 'uoi'.

uoi

  • (v.) to attempt (something), to try (something) out
  • (adv.) to try to

Ai ine ia i uku ai uoi?!
“What are you trying to do?!”

Notes: HAPPY CATURDAY!!! :D

You know, I could have sworn that I’d already put this picture up:

Keli surprised.

But no. I was thinking of this picture. Apparently “surprised” is something Keli does well—and often.

As for this iku… Yeah. It’s, uh…something. Sometimes you just have to throw up your hands and say, “I don’t know where this came from.” I think that’s what all those involved say about Small Soldiers. It just happened, and now we’re stuck with it—just as I’m stuck with this really bizarre (and yet, somehow, specific-looking) iku. Ikunima’u? Check.


Ka

• Friday, January 6th, 2012

Glyph of the word 'ka'.

ka

  • (part.) marks the past tense (as well as a switch in subject, if no other marker is present)

Ka liki ei i iko kau.
“I have laid claim to this.”

Notes: HAPPY CATURDAY!!! :D

Keli loves all boxes, of course, but she really likes boxes like this:

Keli in a box.

The iku above combines with other subject status iku like ae and e. As for function, today it marks the simple past tense, but it’s also developing into an anterior. There used to just be an imperfect/perfect distinction in Kamakawi (this being the perfect), but that developed into a tense distinction, as it often does.


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