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.

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

You, government White man, why don’t you first have a look at this Chinook writing?

The sequel to my post yesterday continues Father Le Jeune’s rant against White cynicism. Again, look closely.  The differences between what Le Jeune writes in English (pretty civilly) and his Chinook Jargon (translated… Continue reading

White good, Indian bad

A racist Catch-22.  Paraphrased: The only good Indian is one who you turn into a White person.  The only easy way to acculturate the Indians is to use Chinook Jargon.  Chinook Jargon is… Continue reading