Basket Maker, West Coast Kloochman

Maybe she’s łəw̓ál̓məš — Lower Chehalis: Basket Maker, West Coast Kloochman (click to embiggen)

“Across the Wide Missouri” needs a script

Thanks to the powers that be, I have a copy of “Across the Wide Missouri“, the famous Hollywood movie with lots of Chinuk Wawa dialogue and a weirdly ingratiating Clark Gable. It would… Continue reading

An actual 1st-person, near-death experience (Le Jacq’s letter)

I hope you’re able to follow along when I present these little texts of Chinook Jargon. There is so much there. I try to give an English translation that suggests what an actual… Continue reading

Pooty good!

Just the bullets: New Chinuk Wawa word discovered: “pooty”.*. (As usual this only means we’ve just now noticed it). *Rendered in a Huckleberry Finn spelling to help you guess what it means. Got… Continue reading

What do saying a Catholic mass & a near-death experience have in common?

What do saying a Catholic mass & a near-death experience have in common? I’m sorry to say there is a sad answer to that, for many who went through the residential-school experience, but… Continue reading

Public service announcement: “alki” is not the future tense

Or, the Alki Point 🙂 In the interest of sharing knowledge of good Chinuk Wawa, I want to share how to use the words that you’re usually told mean “future”, “present”, and “past”… Continue reading

Street Chinook: dyspepsia!

There’s a rule of thumb we use when documenting a language: get the speaker to talk about a near-death experience.  The reason for doing this is that you get the least filtered, most natural… Continue reading

Delirium tremens in the Okanagan

A whole lotta shaking goin’ on!  Hands, bodies, souls.  Not to get too personal, but the following is in honour of a loved one who died in a similar way about this date… Continue reading

Temperance pledge, Stó:lō style (1893)

The other day in this blog I mentioned the epidemic of alcoholism in Indian country that we get a number of close glimpses into via the Kamloops Wawa newspaper.  Under the influence of… Continue reading

Johnny Harper gets married & dies

The 1890s were a transitional time in the southern BC interior. Many Aboriginal people had been married in the old traditional way. Missionary priests were promoting Catholic marriage. Sometimes, a person would postpone… Continue reading