Archive for the ‘T’ Category


• Tuesday, January 31st, 2012

Glyph of the word 'tako'.


  • (n.) vein

Mata ei iu tako e’i epelu o ia tou.
“I can see the veins under your skin.”

Notes: This is only for the types of veins that are in your body, not something like a vein of ore in a rock. The main body of the iku is ko, and there’s a ta inside of it (kind of like the vein is inside the body).

I have always been very, very uncomfortable imagining, talking about, or thinking about veins. Internal organs? No problem. Veins? Very troubling. Troubling in the same way as discussing a vasectomy is troubling. (Guys will know what I’m talking about.) Just an icky, icky feeling pulses its way through the entire fiber of my being. Makes me shudder. :(

So. Let us drop this topic and never speak of it again.


• Monday, January 30th, 2012

Glyph of the word 'tawe'.


  • (v.) to open (something)

Ka tawe ei ie puka.
“I opened the door.”

Notes: This is one of those rare words that exists kind of in a vacuum. It means “to open”, but is only said of things like doors and windows. Its iku features the syllabic glyph ta inside of a house (where the door would be). It has a very limited, very specific use.


• Tuesday, January 10th, 2012

Glyph of the word 'teka'.


  • (n.) (sea) salt

Li ia ie teka livu e nevi i’i.
“Pass me the salt.”

Notes: There’s no polite version of “give” here, so nevi serves. (Wait a minute! I’ve never done nevi?! Man oh man!) Salt will come most naturally from the sea to island-dwellers, so the type of salt this refers to is sea salt. It’s been extended to salt that comes from other sources (they both do the trick), but the sea is its true origin.


• Monday, January 9th, 2012

Glyph of the word 'toku'.


  • (v.) to put, to place
  • (n.) position
  • (adj.) placed

Li ia i ipe livu e toku ie nuva.
“Put that pot on the table.”

Notes: This is another verb that will often show up in serial constructions. If the object to be placed is already a topic in the discourse (or, say, you see someone holding a pot), you can dispense with the first clause entirely, and just say the equivalent of, “Put on the table” (ungrammatical in English, but okay in Kamakawi).


• Saturday, January 7th, 2012

Glyph of the word 'to'o'.


  • (n.) swarm (of insects)
  • (v.) to swarm (said of insects)

Awei! I to’o o tata!
“Ack! It’s a swarm of flies!”

Notes: Bleh. A swarm of insects has to be the worst thing in the world—especially small flying ones when you’re biking. Bleh! :evil:

So, in reality, this post is coming after three of the weekend’s playoff games have already finished. Even so, though, I think it’s about time to do my NFL playoff predictions. Here they are:

Wild Card Round

  • (5) Atlanta Falcons def. (4) New York Giants 31-24
  • (3) New Orleans Saints def. (6) Detroit Lions 45-38

Divisional Round

  • (1) Green Bay Packers def. (5) Atlanta Falcons 42-17
  • (2) San Francisco 49ers def. (3) New Orleans Saints 23-21

NFC Championship

  • (1) Green Bay Packers def. (2) San Francisco 49ers 34-20

Wild Card Round

  • (5) Pittsburgh Steelers def. (4) Denver Broncos 53-9
  • (6) Cincinnati Bengals def. (3) Houston Texans 27-19

Divisional Round

  • (1) New England Patriots def. (6) Cincinnati Bengals 37-27
  • (2) Baltimore Ravens def. (5) Pittsburgh Steelers 31-27

AFC Championship

  • (2) Baltimore Ravens def. (1) New England Patriots 17-14 (OT)

Super Bowl XLV

  • (1) Green Bay Packers def. (2) Baltimore Ravens 45-26

You know who the Ravens and Steelers remind me of? The Titans and Jaguars from 1999. The Jaguars lost three games all year: all to the Titans. The Steelers lost a couple others, but I call them dropping three to the Ravens this year, and that’ll catapult the Ravens to the Super Bowl. Now, on paper, it’s hard to pick anyone but the Packers over the Patriots, but I hate those cheaters!


• Thursday, January 5th, 2012

Glyph of the word 'tone'.


  • (n.) ladle

Neo ia ie tone, funa!
“Use a ladle, you oaf!”

Notes: Sometimes a word is born simply because I have a good idea of the way the iku will work. So we have mate, novu and fa’e, all of which rely on the “open box” shape seen in a lot of Kamakawi iku acting as a tureen of sorts. In this one, then, you have the ladle going into the tureen, and thus: tone.

I didn’t give much thought to how a ladle would work its way into Kamakawi culture. I’m pretty sure, though, that if you have soup, you’ll find a way to get a ladle. Ladles just make sense, after all—at least if you have big pots or bowls. And why wouldn’t you? Those are useful! I mean, who makes a stew for one?

Ha, ha. That’s a good name for a blog for single cooks: Stew for One. If you use it, the royalty checks come straight me.


• Tuesday, December 6th, 2011

Glyph of the word 'taketepi'.


  • (v.) to be busy
  • (adj.) busy
  • (n.) busy-ness

Taketepi, taketepi, taketepi…
“Busy, busy, busy…”

Notes: Let’s see how many references to Cat’s Cradle I can pack into this blog!

Today’s word is coming a day late because I’ve been busy like an ant—or, at least, busy like a Kamakawi ant. The word meaning something like “busy” (but perhaps a bit more jocular than the English equivalent) derives from the word tepi, which means “ant”. Observationally, it should be clear where this came from. I mean, you ever seen an ant rest? Ever seen an ant just chillin’, feeling the breeze? Nah, man. Ants be busy! All the time running around in crazy directions like they got some place to be.

And another thing: Why the heck can’t ants walk in a straight line?! What’s their problem? The shortest distance between two points if you’re an ant is some crazy, squiggly, wet-noodle spaghetti-type line, apparently. They’re all nuts!


• Tuesday, November 22nd, 2011

Glyph of the word 'tepi'.


  • (n.) ant (any kind)

Ai ipe i tepi ai?
“Is that an ant?”

Notes: This is not the only word for “ant” in Kamakawi, but it serves for any kind of ant. There will be at least one more word for “ant” in the future. Something to look forward to! ;)


• Tuesday, November 15th, 2011

Glyph of the word 'taketuli'.


  • (n.) girlfriend

Iko i taketuli oi’i.
“This is my girlfriend.”

Notes: The counterpart to yesterday’s word is today’s word for “girlfriend”. I like this word. It’s kind of funky, kind of bouncy. I think it’s just right.


• Monday, November 14th, 2011

Glyph of the word '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.