Wednesday, July 15, 2009


nvt. To answer saucily or rudely; rude, sarcastic, insolent, saucy, impudent; rudeness.

When I was a young adult, I used to listen to a kupuna who would always say this word, pākīkē, and I would assume he was saying paʻakīkī (difficult), a word I grew up hearing frequently (not directed at me, of course). My own grandma could be heard spewing out "poʻo paʻakīkī" for "hard head" all the time.

Turns out this kupuna was teaching me a whole new and useful word. Pākīkē translates as rude or sarcastic. I could have used THAT word on a few people (hmm, was that me being pākīkē?). I could also draw the conclusion that I was never rude nor was anyone around me rude so my grandma never had to use pākīkē with us. Or maybe she did use it and my untrained ear just thought she was saying paʻakīkī. Again.

Keu nō hoʻi ʻoe he keiki pākīkē - But oh my goodness arent you a rude child.
Mai hana pākīkē - Do not be rude.
...a huhū, a pākīkē, ʻaʻole malu ka hale, ʻaʻole ʻoluʻolu ka noho pū ʻana - and angry, and rude, the house was not at peace, the dwelling together not pleasant. (from the newspaper Ka Nonanona, March 18, 1845)

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