Native Hawaiian has been in danger of extinction since James Cook made first contact in 1778, but a renaissance in the 1970s renewed interest in preserving the language. More commonly spoken is pidgin, a creole language based on English that features words from Portuguese, Japanese, Filipino, and other languages. Here are a few common words and phrases to get you started.
‘a‘ole • adverb • ah-oh-leh: No. Whatever socks-and-sandals, beach-puking sin you were about to commit, just no.
haole • noun • how-lee: A person not of native Hawaiian descent, a foreigner, a white person. Don’t take offense; it’s no slur.
ni‘ele • adjective • nee-eh-lay: Nosy or overly inquisitive. Small islands make for, er, involved neighbors.
all bus • adjective • ahl buss: Drunk, hammered. Remember how you were on election night? Probably not.
bumbye • adverb • buhm-bi: Later, at another time. When is Bertha going to be done with her digging?
da kine • anything • duh kyne: Used in place of a word you can’t remember, or really any word at all. That legal Washington pakalolo, though.