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H.L. Mencken (1880–1956). The American Language. 1921.

Page 204

One says “the makai-ewa corner.” Makai means toward the sea. Ewa means toward the north or in the direction of the big Ewa plantation which lies toward the north of Honolulu. Thus the makai-ewa corner means that corner which is on the seaward side and toward Ewa. Instead of saying east or the direction in which the sun rises, Honolulans say mauka, which means toward the mountains. To designate south, they say waikiki, which means toward Diamond Head or Waikiki Beach.
One often hears a little boy say he has a puka in his stocking. The housekeeper directs the yard man to put the rubbish in the puka. It is a simple Hawaiian word meaning hole. Another common word is lanai. In English it means porch or veranda. One never says, “Come out on the porch,” but “Come out on the lanai.”
The two words pahea oe are used as a term of greeting. In the States they say, “How do you do?” “How are you?” or “Good day.” In Honolulu, “Pahea oe?” conveys the same meaning. The response is Maikai no, or “Very good,” or “All right.”
On the mainland the word aloha is not new. It is used as a word of greeting or as a word of farewell. “Aloha oe” may mean “Farewell to you,” “How are you?” or “Good day.” The word is not as common among the Americans as some of the others, but is used to a more exclusive extent by the Hawaiians.
A large number of Americans have an entirely wrong interpretation of the word kanaka. In its truest and only sense it means man. It can be interpreted in no other way. In Hawaiian a man is a kanaka, a woman a wahine. The word kane is also often used as man, and coupled with the word keiki—keiki kane—means boy. The Hawaiians have often been referred to as kanakas, which on the mainland has developed into more or less of a slang word to designate the people of the Hawaiian race. This, however, is totally incorrect.
The kamaaina, or old-timer, usually refers to his hat as his papale. His house is his hale, and his food is usually designated as kaukau, although this is not a Hawaiian word. There are perhaps a hundred other such words which are used daily in preference to those which mean the same in English.
  The immigrant in the midst of a large native population, of course, exerts no such pressure upon the national language as that exerted upon an immigrant language by the native, but nevertheless his linguistic habits and limitations have to be reckoned with in dealing with him, and the concessions thus made necessary have a very ponderable influence upon the general speech. Of much importance is the support given to a native tendency by the foreigner’s incapacity for employing (or even comprehending) syntax of any complexity, or words not of the simplest. This is the tendency toward succinctness and clarity, at whatever sacrifice of grace. One English observer, Sidney Low, puts the chief blame for the general explosiveness of American upon the immigrant, who must be communicated