Archive for November, 2010


• Tuesday, November 30th, 2010

Glyph of the word 'meliki'.


  • (adj.) beautiful
  • (v.) to be beautiful, to have beauty
  • (n.) beauty
  • (n.) beautiful one, beautiful person

Ipe mata kivio meliki!
“What a beautiful sight!”

Notes: Or perhaps “vista” would be a better translation. This was the image I had in mind:

A Japanese rock garden.

That’s a nice little rock garden, complete with plants and bushes. I wouldn’t mind having that as my front yard.

The iku for meliki is a bit curious. I can see some of me in there, but a box has replaced the image of the woman. In the middle is the circle determinative, which denotes positive things. I think I may have made a box there not only to fit the circle, but also to indicate a face (so it’s like it’s an image of a beautiful person). I guess that qualifies it as one of a number of iku types, but ikuleyaka seems the most appropriate classification.


• Monday, November 29th, 2010

Glyph of the word 'tiva'.


  • (n.) knife
  • (v.) to cut, to slice
  • (v.) to use a knife
  • (adj.) sharp

Tiva ia i katata i’i.
“Cut me some jerky.”

Notes: Since I brought it up recently, I thought I’d introduce the word tiva, which means “to cut”, roughly (the base word was “knife”, or a short cutting implement). The iku is a fairly straightforward combination of ti and fa.

Back when I coined this word (while I was at Berkeley), I had a pair of sandals whose brand name was “Tiva”. The “logo” (if that’s what it was) on the box was a gigantic spider, which turned me off quite a bit. The sequence was a licit Kamakawi word, though, so I thought I’d use it somewhere. I didn’t want it to be “spider” (too obvious), but somehow I thought it worked well as “cut”, and it’s been “cut” ever since.


• Sunday, November 28th, 2010

Glyph of the word 'i'ava'.


  • (v.) to drift, to be adrift
  • (adj.) adrift
  • (n.) drifting

Au u’upi Kalavene…
“The Bears are adrift…”

Notes: Up by three in the waning seconds of the fourth quarter, the Berkeley Bears stopped the Washington Huskies three straight times on the goal line.

Unfortunately, there was a fourth down…

And so Berkeley finished 5-7, and will miss out on a bowl game for the first time since my junior year of college. Add to that that we lost the Big Game, and, well… I’ll be glad when this year’s done with.

Week 11

  • Tennessee 24 Washington 17
  • New York Jets 27 Houston 25
  • Baltimore 33 Carolina 0
  • Philadelphia 38 New York Giants 28
  • San Diego 44 Denver 17

That’s 4-1 again, which takes me to 39-16 on the year.

Oh, and remember when I said to take note of that Baltimore-Carolina prediction last week? The final score ended up being Baltimore 37 Carolina 13. So it wasn’t a shutout, but it was a pretty bad blowout.

Here are my Week 12 predictions:

Week 12

  • Green Bay 33 Atlanta 29
  • Cleveland 36 Carolina 12
  • Oakland 20 Miami 12
  • Indianapolis 31 San Diego 24
  • San Francisco 33 Arizona 27

That Green Bay score is wishful thinking. I’m playing my best friend in fantasy football this week, and I’m going to need a couple of miracles to beat him—including a huge day by former Berkeley Bear Aaron Rodgers as his Packers take on the Atlanta Falcons.

Just five hours to kickoff! I should probably get some sleep…


• Saturday, November 27th, 2010

Glyph of the word 'i'ava'.


  • (n.) meal
  • (v.) to have a meal

I’ava eino a.
“We’re having a meal.”

Notes: I realized that there aren’t many pictures of me up on the internet (a few, but not many), so here’s one with me:

Me, Erin and Sally Caves.

That’s a picture of me, my wife Erin, and Sally Caves, creator of Teonaht. We were out having lunch at her parents’ just north of where I live.

This word, i’ava, is a kind of…not formal word, but “higher class” word when used as a verb. It’s a fancy way of saying “We’re eating”. I’ve found that a number of languages have a word like this, for some reason. In English, we can use “take” (e.g. “I took my lunch on the veranda”). Arabic has a fancy one, but I’m not actually sure what it means. But to say something like “I took my lunch”, it’d be:

أطناول الغداء

In IPA that’d be something like [ʔa.tˤa.ˈnaː.wal al.ɣi.ˈdaːʔ].

Anyway, so this is the Kamakawi “fancy” word for eating. The word i’ava was certainly a noun first (derived from hava, “to eat”), and while you can use just about any word as a verb or a noun in Kamakawi, social custom dictates what words are commonly used. This is a noun that has been adopted as a verb and is used as often as “fancy” language is required.


• Friday, November 26th, 2010

Glyph of the word 'laumi'.


  • (v.) to be lying down
  • (v.) to recline
  • (adj.) lying down, reclining
  • (n.) nap

Ea: A laumi ei. Ea: Ia ie elenetiá li’i.
“Yes: I’m lying down. And yes: You are my bed.”


For those who read last week’s post, no, things are not back to normal. Keli is still pretty much a downstairs cat.

However, things are improving. We’ve returned her water fountain to its normal spot, and she comes upstairs to drink. She’s also explored a little bit upstairs (even coming onto the carpet!). She still won’t go near the bed. But my hope is, maybe not next week, but maybe in two weeks, she’ll be back sleeping on the bed like she used to.

She’s been very cuddly downstairs, though, and likes to have us down there. And she’s gotten back to one of her favorite evening activities: Using us as furniture (partially). The picture will explain.

Keli by the window.


• Thursday, November 25th, 2010

Glyph of the word 'mitatiala'.


Mitatiala takenevi i nanai oi’i.
“The kind turkey is my friend.”

Notes: Happy Turkey Day! ~:D

Indeed, the day has come where everyone in America traditionally feasts on turkeys. I am a meat eater, but I do love turkeys (the birds). They’re such charming creatures—like all animals. I feel bad about eating them, but obviously not bad enough not to.

It’s troubled me for some time, though, the whole meat-eating thing. The only thing that I think rescues it (a bit) is that many animals are, in fact, devoured in the wild. So it’s not as if eating meat is unnatural (if naturalness can be considered a valid measure of morality [about which I have my qualms]). Still, I really like all animals. They’re so pleasant…

The Kamakawi word for “turkey” comes from the Zhyler word (in the romanization, müsažal), and the Zhyler word is a combination of the stem müsa, which has to do with walking, and the suffix -žal, which denotes birds. Thus, a turkey in Zhyler is a “walking bird”—an oblique reference to The Simpsons. :)

Enjoy your Thanksgiving today, if you live in America! If not, enjoy your Thursday! :D


• Wednesday, November 24th, 2010

Glyph of the word 'nuoku'. or Alternate glyph of the word 'nuoku'.


  • (v.) to be crooked, to be bent
  • (adj.) crooked, bent
  • (n.) crookedness

A nuoku ipe mopa.
“That wall is crooked.”

Notes: That is, this wall:

A crooked wall.

Nuoku is one of the words with a couple different spellings. The first spelling is actually the older one, but the second is a kind of notional spelling that’s become increasingly common. Ordinarily, the glyph oku isn’t used as a syllabic glyph, but here, “crookedness” is associated with wrongness (in the sense that many things that are crooked are not supposed to be crooked [though some things are, and this word can apply to both]), and so the word for “no” seems like it fits in there. This gave rise to the second spelling.

(It also gave rise to the nonce word nuea [cf. ea], used primarily in arguments about whether or not a picture has been hung straight.)


• Tuesday, November 23rd, 2010

Glyph of the word 'itiva'.


  • (n.) part, division
  • (n.) row, furrow (in a field, for example)
  • (n.) ditch
  • (n.) line
  • (n.) pass, mountain pass

Itiva iu leya: Feyaveya…
“Rows in rocks: Awesome…”

Notes: So when I see something like this, I get this nigh irresistible urge to jump in there and mess everything up:

A Japanese rock garden.

Probably a good thing I resisted the urge during my visit to the Huntington.

Itiva‘s a nice multifunctional word. It comes, of course, from tiva, which…I haven’t done yet. Dang. Some day I’ll have everything up I need to refer to…


• Monday, November 22nd, 2010

Glyph of the word 'noe'.


  • (n.) leaf
  • (v.) to have leaves (used with trees that have leaves)
  • (adj.) leafy (i.e. to describe a tree that has leaves)
  • (nm.) a boy’s given name

Noe falele i kopoloi.
“Green leaves on a little tree.”

Notes: The iku for noe was one of those iku whose execution I was unhappy with. I fixed it and I think it’s better, but I’m not sure it’s quite right still. All in all, though, it’s look pretty good from a distance.

I am not sure, though, what it means… I think I had an idea of a tree and a floaty leaf, and that that’s somehow embedded in the image (in a non-literal way). It just kind of looks leafy to me.

I hope you’ve enjoyed today’s Kamakawi Word of the Day. It came a bit late, though, but that seems to be the way I’m doing things lately (a little late).

Oh, hang on! I had a picture for today’s post! Here it is:

A nice fancy tree.


• Sunday, November 21st, 2010

Glyph of the word 'lave'.


  • (v.) to rain (no subject)
  • (n.) rain
  • (adj.) rainy
  • (adj.) raining

A lave, a lave…
“It’s raining, it’s raining…”

Notes: “…on the streets of New York City.” From Dream Theater‘s “Trial of Tears”. I was thinking of that song while listening to Rush‘s “Limelight”, and now it’s “Xanadu” by Olivia Newton-John and Electric Light Orchestra. Funny how I can have one song in my head while listening to a completely different one… It’s like I have two different sets of ears: One on my head, and one in my head.

Missed out on one last week, but still rolling on my predictions:

Week 10

  • Chicago 23 Minnesota 19
  • New York Jets 17 Cleveland 14
  • Miami 29 Tennessee 27
  • Pittsburgh 31 New England 24
  • Philadelphia 27 Washington 22

That’s 4-1, which takes me to 35-15 on the year. That’s nearly 72% so far. Hachi machi!

Here are my Week 11 predictions:

Week 11

  • Tennessee 24 Washington 17
  • New York Jets 27 Houston 25
  • Baltimore 33 Carolina 0
  • Philadelphia 38 New York Giants 28
  • San Diego 44 Denver 17

Note that Baltimore score. I really do think it’s going to be a huge blowout—and a shutout, on top of that. Watch for it.

Otherwise, though, things aren’t well in the football world. I have a feeling that after this weekend the Raiders, who are in first place, will be a full game behind the Kansas City Chiefs. The Raiders travel to Pittsburgh to play one of the hottest teams in the NFL, while the Chiefs stay at home and face a creampuff in the Arizona Cardinals. It’ll be an uphill climb the rest of the season…

And then, contrary to my bold prediction yesterday, the Stanfurd Trees thumped the Berkeley Bears and took the Axe. I take solace in the fact that Berkeley is without its starting quarterback, and Brock Mansion all but handed the ball to the defense every time he stepped out on the field. Dark days ahead…

The iku for lave is a true ikunoala, but I find it to be a fortuitous combination, because it kind of looks like rain: A line for the sky, a line for the ground, and an arrow pointing from the sky to the ground. The arrow, of course, is a spear (from la), but it’s close enough.

I can’t remember why, but I wanted to coin the word lave for “rain” after hearing the Israel Kamakawiwo’ole song “Hi’ilawe”. I’m not even sure what it means. (Of course, I could look it up, but to do so, I’d have to walk all the way over there! You wouldn’t have me strain my poor little legs, would you?)

For those who read my Caturday post this past Friday, Keli is in much better spirits, though still not coming upstairs on her own. I took her to the vet, and we’ve been encouraged to let her take her time and work back up to it. She spent all day downstairs with us, and was very happy down there. I think it’s just a matter of time.