Tuesday, June 15, 2010
Awk...Silly Use of Hawaiian on TV...
Okay, so this Carl's ad has been bugging me. I speak a little Hawaiian and it was just enough to be irritating not knowing the exact translation of what they were saying so I looked it up.
Hala-kahiki on your moa u translates into pineapple on your chicken. Moa is chicken. U is the possessive (hence, "your" chicken). So they literally translated their chicken sandwich with pineapple.
Hala-kahiki means pineapple although I suspect it derives from the more literal translation, Foreign Hala, since the leaves on a pineapple look like the leaves of the Hala Tree, especially a young one before it branches out and pineapple was imported into Hawaii from South America. Just more conjecture of course. Anyhow, mystery solved in the case of the corny Carl's ad.
It all made me feel pretty silly when I realized it was an ad for a chicken sandwich with grilled pineapple (duh!). The answer was right in front of my face. Oh well. My excuse: I'd never heard anyone call a pineapple a Hala-kahiki in Hawaii, ever. The rest of it, I figured out pretty quick.
Disclaimer: the above conjecture is not intended to provide any endorsement for Carl's or their advertising. This was, for me, just an academic exercise.