At Home with the Hansard

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Legislative Assembly

Bingo at the Elks

Here we are in the fifth session of the first Assembly. On Friday 22 February 2002, the Hon. Ed Picco of Iqaluit (East) sends the week out with a bang with this handsome illus­tration of the appropriate use of formal address.

Session 1.5 of the Assembly—covering February-March 2001, a few more weeks in May, back again in November-December, and a final round in February-March 2002—was a hard-working one. By February 2002, everyone had to be feeling a bit punchy.

uqaqti, pivissaqaqtitaujumavunga kajusititti­lunga atuinnaqattaqtatinnit ullutuinnau­tillugu maligaliurvimmi maliga­liuqtiup uqausissanginnit. ᐅᖃᖅᑎ, ᐱᕕᔅᓴᖃᖅᑎᑕᐅᔪᒪᕗᖓ ᑲᔪᓯᑎᑦᑎ­ᓗᖓ ᐊᑐᐃᓐᓇᖃᑦᑕᖅᑕᑎᓐᓂᑦ ᐅᓪᓗᑐᐃᓐᓇᐅ­ᑎᓪᓗᒍ ᒪᓕᒐᓕᐅᕐᕕᒻᒥ ᒪᓕᒐ­ᓕᐅᖅᑎᐅᑉ ᐅᖃᐅᓯᔅᓴᖏᓐᓂᑦ. Mr. Speaker, I would like to take this opportunity to continue our assembly’s Friday Members’ Statement tradition.
uqaqti, amisunik arraagunik nunavummiut imaiqattaq­simammata kajusiniaqtu­tillu piqatauqattar­lutik tamaani iqalunni talaviisakkut taqqakkualu illuquti­ngannit. ᐅᖃᖅᑎ, ᐊᒥᓱᓂᒃ ᐊᕐᕌᒍᓂᒃ ᓄᓇᕗᒻᒥᐅᑦ ᐃᒪᐃᖃᑦᑕᖅ­ᓯᒪᒻᒪᑕ ᑲᔪᓯᓂᐊᖅᑐ­ᑎᓪᓗ ᐱᖃᑕᐅᖃᑦᑕᕐ­ᓗᑎᒃ ᑕᒫᓂ ᐃᖃᓗᓐᓂ ᑕᓚᕖᓴᒃᑯᑦ ᑕᖅᑲᒃᑯᐊᓗ ᐃᓪᓗᖁᑎ­ᖓᓐᓂᑦ. Mr. Speaker, over the years many Nunavut residents have and continue to be involved with a participatory event here in Iqaluit through the medium of TV and also in public forums,
iqalummiut quviasuttummariu­suunguvut. ᐃᖃᓗᒻᒥᐅᑦ ᖁᕕᐊᓱᑦᑐᒻᒪᕆᐅ­ᓲᖑᕗᑦ. Iqaluit residents can be found enjoying this practice.
uqaqti, tamaani pinasuarusirmit amisut maliga­liuqtiit qauji­mammata, anaanaga niurrusima­laurmat iqalunnut. ᐅᖃᖅᑎ, ᑕᒫᓂ ᐱᓇᓱᐊᕈᓯᕐᒥᑦ ᐊᒥᓱᑦ ᒪᓕᒐ­ᓕᐅᖅᑏᑦ ᖃᐅᔨ­ᒪᒻᒪᑕ, ᐊᓈᓇᒐ ᓂᐅᕐᕈᓯᒪ­ᓚᐅᕐᒪᑦ ᐃᖃᓗᓐᓄᑦ. Mr. Speaker, this past week as many members know, my mother has been visiting Iqaluit.
malilaurmat nuliarnit amma sanilli­tinnit upattunut. ᒪᓕᓚᐅᕐᒪᑦ ᓄᓕᐊᕐᓂᑦ ᐊᒻᒪ ᓴᓂᓪᓕ­ᑎᓐᓂᑦ ᐅᐸᑦᑐᓄᑦ. She joined with my wife and our neighbour to attend the gathering.
tapailauqpuq, angummit qaujimajaummarit­tumit upattuqalaur­mimmat. ᑕᐸᐃᓚᐅᖅᐳᖅ, ᐊᖑᒻᒥᑦ ᖃᐅᔨᒪᔭᐅᒻᒪᕆᑦ­ᑐᒥᑦ ᐅᐸᑦᑐᖃᓚᐅᕐ­ᒥᒻᒪᑦ. To her surprise Mr. Speaker, a very distin­guished gentleman was also present at this gathering.
assuruqtummariu­lauqpuq uqaqti, qanulimaaq uuttuqtuni, qanulimaaq saalassarasu­lauqpuq qanulimaattiaq. ᐊᔅᓱᕈᖅᑐᒻᒪᕆᐅ­ᓚᐅᖅᐳᖅ ᐅᖃᖅᑎ, ᖃᓄᓕᒫᖅ ᐆᑦᑐᖅᑐᓂ, ᖃᓄᓕᒫᖅ ᓵᓚᔅᓴᕋᓱ­ᓚᐅᖅᐳᖅ ᖃᓄᓕᒫᑦᑎᐊᖅ. He was very aggressive Mr. Speaker, he did every­thing possible, and I mean every­thing possible to win.
uqaqti, uqammarilauqpuq iksivautau­jumalluni aulattiluni­luunniit katimannarmit. ᐅᖃᖅᑎ, ᐅᖃᒻᒪᕆᓚᐅᖅᐳᖅ ᐃᒃᓯᕙᐅᑕᐅ­ᔪᒪᓪᓗᓂ ᐊᐅᓚᑦᑎᓗᓂ­ᓘᓐᓃᑦ ᑲᑎᒪᓐᓇᕐᒥᑦ. Mr. Speaker, at one point he even suggested that he would chair or even call the meeting.
uqaqti, isuanili kisiani taimai­launngilaq, uqaqti, taimai­giaqaqujaulau­nngimmat. ᐅᖃᖅᑎ, ᐃᓱᐊᓂᓕ ᑭᓯᐊᓂ ᑕᐃᒪᐃ­ᓚᐅᙱᓚᖅ, ᐅᖃᖅᑎ, ᑕᐃᒪᐃ­ᒋᐊᖃᖁᔭᐅᓚᐅ­ᙱᒻᒪᑦ. Mr. Speaker, in the end common sense prevailed and he was not Mr. Speaker, he was not allowed to do this.
uqaqti, taanna qaujimajauju­mmarik angut, uqaqti, saalassara­suttummariu­lauqtuq, ᐅᖃᖅᑎ, ᑖᓐᓇ ᖃᐅᔨᒪᔭᐅᔪ­ᒻᒪᕆᒃ ᐊᖑᑦ, ᐅᖃᖅᑎ, ᓵᓚᔅᓴᕋ­ᓱᑦᑐᒻᒪᕆᐅ­ᓚᐅᖅᑐᖅ, Mr. Speaker, this distin­guished gentleman, Mr. Speaker, who tried so hard to win,
saalasnarasuqatau­lluni nuliannik amma anaanannik asinginnillu iqalummiunik uqaqtii ivviu­lauqpuq. ᓵᓚᔅᓇᕋᓱᖃᑕᐅ­ᓪᓗᓂ ᓄᓕᐊᓐᓂᒃ ᐊᒻᒪ ᐊᓈᓇᓐᓂᒃ ᐊᓯᖏᓐᓂᓪᓗ ᐃᖃᓗᒻᒥᐅᓂᒃ ᐅᖃᖅᑏ ᐃᕝᕕᐅ­ᓚᐅᖅᐳᖅ. who partici­pated with my wife and my mother and other Iqaluit residents was no other than you Mr. Speaker, it was you.
uqaqtii, ivvininna vinnguurasulauq­putit iulksmi ᐅᖃᖅᑏ, ᐃᕝᕕᓂᓐᓇ ᕕᙴᕋᓱᓚᐅᖅ­ᐳᑎᑦ ᐃᐅᓪᒃᔅᒥ Mr. Speaker, it was you who tried to win bingo at the Elks
amma uqaqtii kikku­limaanik uqaqsaaq­tittilauq­putit vinnguuria­qataugavit vinnguuq­tiuguma­mmarilauqpu­tilluunniit vinnguura­sullu­tillu atauttikkut. ᐊᒻᒪ ᐅᖃᖅᑏ ᑭᒃᑯ­ᓕᒫᓂᒃ ᐅᖃᖅᓵᖅ­ᑎᑦᑎᓚᐅᖅ­ᐳᑎᑦ ᕕᙴᕆᐊ­ᖃᑕᐅᒐᕕᑦ ᕕᙴᖅ­ᑎᐅᒍᒪ­ᒻᒪᕆᓚᐅᖅᐳ­ᑎᓪᓘᓐᓃᑦ ᕕᙴᕋ­ᓱᓪᓗ­ᑎᓪᓗ ᐊᑕᐅᑦᑎᒃᑯᑦ. and Mr. Speaker you surprised everyone in attendance at the bingo by your offer to even call the bingo and play at the same time.
uqaqtii, quviappunga uqarianga uqaqtii uqarianga anaanaga saalassa­launngimmat, ᐅᖃᖅᑏ, ᖁᕕᐊᑉᐳᖓ ᐅᖃᕆᐊᖓ ᐅᖃᖅᑏ ᐅᖃᕆᐊᖓ ᐊᓈᓇᒐ ᓵᓚᔅᓴ­ᓚᐅᙱᒻᒪᑦ, Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to say Mr. Speaker that my mother didn’t win
nuliara saalassa­launngimmat kisianittau saalassalau­nnginnavit. ᓄᓕᐊᕋ ᓵᓚᔅᓴ­ᓚᐅᙱᒻᒪᑦ ᑭᓯᐊᓂᑦᑕᐅ ᓵᓚᔅᓴᓚᐅ­ᙱᓐᓇᕕᑦ. and my wife did not win but Mr. Speaker neither did you.
taimaimmat inuttitut uqaruma­vunga aniq­pannami ilinnut. ᑕᐃᒪᐃᒻᒪᑦ ᐃᓄᑦᑎᑐᑦ ᐅᖃᕈᒪ­ᕗᖓ ᐊᓂᖅ­ᐸᓐᓇᒥ ᐃᓕᓐᓄᑦ. So in Inuktitut I would say anniqpanna to you.

I wish I knew how we got from anniqpanna—Mr Picco’s actual word, inserted into an English speech—to the translator’s aniqpannami. Was the translator so certain the original (English) transcription was wrong, she did not hesitate to change it?

It probably goes without saying that I also wish it meant something rude. But a bit further along in the Hansard, aniqpannami—spelled like that—is used to translate “Hear, hear!” The word occurs only this once, in a context that excludes all possibility of sarcasm. Darn it all.

But wait! Further investigation leads to a dictionary entry suggesting something along the lines of “he got what he deserved” or “serves him right”. All I need is a -pat- to bridge the gap between aniq- or anniq- and the (be)causative verb ending -gami. And, just to ensure that we are all thoroughly confused, there are at least two different verb roots in play. Root no. 1, meaning to breathe or exhale, is always spelled aniq-. Root no. 2, meaning to treasure or value something—shading on into being possessive or stingy about it—might be either aniq- or anniq-, depending on how badly it wants that letter n. Either way there’s no room for a -pat-, because we are now dealing with the infamous gi verbs—or, in this case, gusuk or possibly saq. Says the dictionary (a different one), blithely ignoring the fact that saq isn’t that kind of affix.

Stay tuned.

If I Do Say So Myself

When the Territory was first established, even the government officials hadn’t fully come to grips with the interface between southern-style political institu­tions and the Inuktitut language. Here, the Hon. Manitok Thompson of Rankin Inlet (South) answers a question. As interpreted into English and retro-translated into Inuktitut:

kikkutuinnarnik sannajjiji­lirijiitaata­kualulauralu­arilli—pili­rivvitta atinga takijuviinngaaluk— ᑭᒃᑯᑐᐃᓐᓇᕐᓂᒃ ᓴᓐᓇᔾᔨᔨ­ᓕᕆᔩᑖᑕ­ᑯᐊᓗᓚᐅᕋᓗ­ᐊᕆᓪᓕ—ᐱᓕ­ᕆᕝᕕᑦᑕ ᐊᑎᖓ ᑕᑭᔪᕖᙶᓗᒃ— There are no Public Works—my goodness, my department’s name is long—
[ijuqtut] [ᐃᔪᖅᑐᑦ] [laughter]
aatusaqattautilirijikkut, ammalu uajamuungaju­lirijikkut piquti­nginnik atuqtaujuqa­nngittuq kaanturaak­tausima­junut. ᐋᑐᓴᖃᑦᑕᐅᑎᓕᕆᔨᒃᑯᑦ, ᐊᒻᒪᓗ ᐅᐊᔭᒨᖓᔪ­ᓕᕆᔨᒃᑯᑦ ᐱᖁᑎ­ᖏᓐᓂᒃ ᐊᑐᖅᑕᐅᔪᖃ­ᙱᑦᑐᖅ ᑳᓐᑐᕌᒃ­ᑕᐅᓯᒪ­ᔪᓄᑦ. Telecommunications & Technical Services facilities being used by any contractors.

Took the words right out of my mouth.

At least the translator didn’t have to resort to taking his best guess. Public Works et cetera is an official department, so all he had to do was go look up its Inuktitut name. After that, the ᑕᑭᔪ­ᕖᙶᓗᒃ (takiju­viinngaaluk) would have come naturally, though the my goodness seems to have fallen by the wayside.

I may need to join it. I’m pretty sure Ms. Thompson is talking about her ᐱᓕᕆᕝᕕᒃ (pilirivvik): the place (-vik) where you do (-liri-) stuff (pi-). And ᐊᑎᖓ (atinga) is simply the fourth-person possessive of ᐊᑎᖅ (atiq), name. And I’m with her as far as the verb root ᑕᑭ (taki), “long”. But when she starts slathering on the affixes I’m lost . . . until I see light again with that decisive ᐋᓗᒃ (-aaluk) at the end. Long, some­thing, some­thing, really long. Maybe she didn’t say my goodness at all. Maybe it’s implicit in the words, like qablunaa­ruluk below.

Be that as it may, falling by the wayside is obviously a bit of a problem when an “all-weather road” means one you can also use in the summer, when the ground isn’t frozen solid. Drop off beside an ice highway and you won’t have much time to kick back and consider your options. Better pick myself up. It turns out I’ve seen this construction before:

ᐱᓕᕆᕝᕕᑦᑕ ᐊᑎᖓ
my department’s name

is long

ᑐᒃᑐᒪ ᓱᕐᓘᖏᒃ
my caribou’s nostrils

ᑕᒡᒋᐅᖕᓄᑦ ᑕᑕᑦᑑᒃ
are full of worms

Yup, it’s our friend the Possessive Genitive. Except that the -tta ending appears to mean “of our department”. Is this a cultural thing, or was the translator simply getting tired?

Close study of the Hansard reveals that this was at least the fifth or sixth time that Ms. Thompson uttered the name of her department. Maybe she, like the translator, was tired that day. Maybe the interpreter spoke especially slowly, giving her time to dwell over what she had said.

Here is some trivia.

Traditional Inuit culture did not have one of those systems where a group of older women get together, select a man to be chief—and calmly de-select him if he doesn’t do a satis­factory job. For that, you had to go a little further south. For an Inuk woman, “Could be better, could be worse” about summed it up.

When the Territory was getting formally organized, there was a push from some quarters to mandate a 50% female Legislative Assembly. Manitok Thompson was a vocal opponent of the idea. She was rewarded by being the only woman elected to the first Assembly. Funny how that works.

How to Say “Damyankee” in Inuktitut

Instruction provided on 28 March 2001 by the Hon. Jack Anawak of Rankin Inlet (North), speaking through an inter­preter. A fascinating feature of the Nunavut Hansard in these early years is that some speakers are flagged as “Interpretation”—in both English and Inuktitut—but it is left to the reader to figure out what language they were originally speaking, and what language it was interpreted into. Unless, that is, you are in on the secret.

In this case, the layered interpretation becomes particularly interesting. Unless someone out there has it all on tape, we’ll never know what Mr Anawak actually said. Instead we’re given a choice between one degree of separation—the on-the-spot interpretation into English—and two degrees of separation—the subsequent Inuktitut translation of the English interpretation. In fact, call it two degrees and three. I doubt the interpreter herself prepared the text; that would be left to some entirely different person. Did they transcribe it on the spot, like a court stenographer, or construct it afterward from recordings? Or both?

ullumi, uqausiqarumavunga uqausirmik. qallunaat uqausingannik. ᐅᓪᓗᒥ, ᐅᖃᐅᓯᖃᕈᒪᕗᖓ ᐅᖃᐅᓯᕐᒥᒃ. ᖃᓪᓗᓈᑦ ᐅᖃᐅᓯᖓᓐᓂᒃ. Today, I would like to talk about a language issue, the language of southerners.
amisut qallunat tukisivanngimmata uvagut uqausingannik. ᐊᒥᓱᑦ ᖃᓪᓗᓇᑦ ᑐᑭᓯᕙᙱᒻᒪᑕ ᐅᕙᒍᑦ ᐅᖃᐅᓯᖓᓐᓂᒃ. Many southerners miss what is said in our language.
ilangit aksualuk tukiliuttia­raksau­ngimmata imaittut sarimanaq, naglinniq inuktitut, ᐃᓚᖏᑦ ᐊᒃᓱᐊᓗᒃ ᑐᑭᓕᐅᑦᑎᐊ­ᕋᒃᓴᐅ­ᖏᒻᒪᑕ ᐃᒪᐃᑦᑐᑦ ᓴᕆᒪᓇᖅ, ᓇᒡᓕᓐᓂᖅ ᐃᓄᒃᑎᑐᑦ, It’s very hard to interpret some words like if you say sarimannaq, or naglinaq in Inuk­titut,

The interpreter wisely kept certain words in their original Inuktitut—but apparently didn’t confer with the transcriber to make sure they got spelled right. The choice between sarimannaq and sarimanaq I can live with. But naglinaq and naglinniq are different words. Well, different affixes. With slightly different meanings.

ilangit tamakkua tukiliu­runnaq­taraluavut imaittut iglu, qajaq, ulu, inuksuk ammalu asingit. ᐃᓚᖏᑦ ᑕᒪᒃᑯᐊ ᑐᑭᓕᐅ­ᕈᓐᓇᖅ­ᑕᕋᓗᐊᕗᑦ ᐃᒪᐃᑦᑐᑦ ᐃᒡᓗ, ᖃᔭᖅ, ᐅᓗ, ᐃᓄᒃᓱᒃ ᐊᒻᒪᓗ ᐊᓯᖏᑦ. there’s some words that we could interpret into our language, like igloo, qajaq, ulu, inuksuk and others.
kisianili ilangit uqausiit atuqat­tarsima­javut ammalu taiksumani tukiqattiaqatta­laursimaju kisianili, tukiqaluaq­tujangimmat. ᑭᓯᐊᓂᓕ ᐃᓚᖏᑦ ᐅᖃᐅᓰᑦ ᐊᑐᖃᑦ­ᑕᕐᓯᒪ­ᔭᕗᑦ ᐊᒻᒪᓗ ᑕᐃᒃᓱᒪᓂ ᑐᑭᖃᑦᑎᐊᖃᑦᑕ­ᓚᐅᕐᓯᒪᔪ ᑭᓯᐊᓂᓕ, ᑐᑭᖃᓗᐊᖅ­ᑐᔭᖏᒻᒪᑦ. But there are some words I think that we have used in the past and they seemed to make sense then but today it doesn’t sound right.

I know exactly what he means. The Natsilingmiut used to employ this set of related words:

ᐊᐃᐸᖅ aipaq (n.) wife-swapping partner

ᐊᐃᐸᕇᒃ aipariik (n. dual) two men who exchange wives or two women who exchange husbands

ᐊᐃᐸᕐᑖᕆᕚ aipaqtaarivaa (trans.) he enters into a wife-swapping relationship with him

Now it just sounds hopelessly quaint and ’sixties.

allat iqqanaijaqatiqaraluaqtuni qallunaanik, uvvaluunniit aikparijait nunaqaqqar­simaju­nngippat, ᐊᓪᓚᑦ ᐃᖅᑲᓇᐃᔭᖃᑎᖃᕋᓗᐊᖅᑐᓂ ᖃᓪᓗᓈᓂᒃ, ᐅᕝᕙᓘᓐᓃᑦ ᐊᐃᒃᐸᕆᔭᐃᑦ ᓄᓇᖃᖅᑲᕐ­ᓯᒪᔪ­ᙱᑉᐸᑦ, Even when you’re working with south­erners, or if your spouse is white or non-Native,
ilaannikkut inuktitut uqaqpakkatta qallunaa­ruluit, qallunaa­ruluk, kisianili tamakkua nunaqaqqaarsima­nngittut qanui­ksatuksau­ngittut taimait­tumik tusariaksaq, ᐃᓛᓐᓂᒃᑯᑦ ᐃᓄᒃᑎᑐᑦ ᐅᖃᖅᐸᒃᑲᑦᑕ ᖃᓪᓗᓈ­ᕈᓗᐃᑦ, ᖃᓪᓗᓈ­ᕈᓗᒃ, ᑭᓯᐊᓂᓕ ᑕᒪᒃᑯᐊ ᓄᓇᖃᖅᑳᕐᓯᒪ­ᙱᑦᑐᑦ ᖃᓄᐃ­ᒃᓴᑐᒃᓴᐅ­ᖏᑦᑐᑦ ᑕᐃᒪᐃᑦ­ᑐᒥᒃ ᑐᓴᕆᐊᒃᓴᖅ, sometimes Inuit might say qablunaa­ruluit, qablunaa­ruluk, and a non-Aboriginal might not mind hearing that,
qauji­manngimut qanullarik tukiqar­mangaaq. ᖃᐅᔨ­ᒪᙱᒧᑦ ᖃᓄᓪᓚᕆᒃ ᑐᑭᖃᕐ­ᒪᖔᖅ. not knowing what it means.

Hmm, well, it all depends doesn’t it? When you heard the compound word “damyankee” uttered by a pre-2004 Bostonian, you knew that the adjective was implicit in the noun. But are we here talking about someone who is inherently -ruluk by virtue of being qablunaaq—or someone who personally merits the -ruluk affix, and also happens to be qablunaaq?

Rhetorical question: If you were a southerner married to an Inuk, and you discovered that your spouse had neglected to make sure you knew what the -ruluk affix meant, wouldn’t the said spouse have some Very Serious Explaining to do? An even more interesting question is what you would do if you were a southern boss who discovered that your Inuit subordinates had similarly withheld this piece of information.

kisianili qallunaaq uqarniqpat imaak inuruluit, inuk akaqsara­janngilaq. ᑭᓯᐊᓂᓕ ᖃᓪᓗᓈᖅ ᐅᖃᕐᓂᖅᐸᑦ ᐃᒫᒃ ᐃᓄᕈᓗᐃᑦ, ᐃᓄᒃ ᐊᑲᖅᓴᕋ­ᔭᙱᓚᖅ. But if a white person were to say Inuruluit, the Inuk person would be offended.

You think? Me, I’d think the Inuk person would be surprised. What would a Japanese tourist say if you pointed and said excitedly “Gaijin”?

kisiani ilangit inuttitut uqausiit atuqtauvattut tusarumi­nanngilat. ᑭᓯᐊᓂ ᐃᓚᖏᑦ ᐃᓄᑦᑎᑐᑦ ᐅᖃᐅᓰᑦ ᐊᑐᖅᑕᐅᕙᑦᑐᑦ ᑐᓴᕈᒥ­ᓇᙱᓚᑦ. But there are some words that are used in the Inuktitut language that are unwelcoming.
qaujimagiaqattariaqaq­pugut uqausittinnit ilaannikkut. ᖃᐅᔨᒪᒋᐊᖃᑦᑕᕆᐊᖃᖅ­ᐳᒍᑦ ᐅᖃᐅᓯᑦᑎᓐᓂᑦ ᐃᓛᓐᓂᒃᑯᑦ. I think we need to watch what we say sometimes.
ilaannikkut uqaqpakatta piijaaqqutau­nngit­tumillu asittinnit aanniq­sivattuta, ᐃᓛᓐᓂᒃᑯᑦ ᐅᖃᖅᐸᑲᑦᑕ ᐲᔮᖅᑯᑕᐅ­ᙱᑦ­ᑐᒥᓪᓗ ᐊᓯᑦᑎᓐᓂᑦ ᐋᓐᓂᖅ­ᓯᕙᑦᑐᑕ, Sometimes we say certain words and uninten­tionally hurt another person,
isumagijaqattiarniq­sauqat­tarutta asittinnit amma qanuq uqar­mangaata inuttitut. ᐃᓱᒪᒋᔭᖃᑦᑎᐊᕐᓂᖅ­ᓴᐅᖃᑦ­ᑕᕈᑦᑕ ᐊᓯᑦᑎᓐᓂᑦ ᐊᒻᒪ ᖃᓄᖅ ᐅᖃᕐ­ᒪᖔᑕ ᐃᓄᑦᑎᑐᑦ. and I truly believe we need to be more sensitive about what we say as Inuit.

I dunno. If someone called me something with -ruluk at the end of it, you would have a hard time convincing me it was unintentional.

The Hon. Mr Puqiqnak Explains Global Warming

Back on 26 May 1999, the legislature was busy with issues that had been around since long before the Territory was formally created. Here, Uriash Puqiqnak of Natsilik addresses a widespread problem.

ullumi 1999-nguman amma suli kamagigialaungi­nattigu tamaani arraagujumi. ᐅᓪᓗᒥ 1999-ᖑᒪᓐ ᐊᒻᒪ ᓱᓕ ᑲᒪᒋᒋᐊᓚᐅᖏ­ᓇᑦᑎᒍ ᑕᒫᓂ ᐊᕐᕌᒍᔪᒥ. Today is 1999 and we still haven’t started dealing with it this year.
iqqaumajunga 1993-mi sivulliuqtiit katimaninginnit piqujivungaaqtuqajumman umiarjuat tikisarainisauqujauqataqtutik ukiarataaqtillugu. ᐃᖅᑲᐅᒪᔪᖓ 1993-ᒥ ᓯᕗᓪᓕᐅᖅᑏᑦ ᑲᑎᒪᓂᖏᓐᓂᑦ ᐱᖁᔨᕗᖔᖅᑐᖃᔪᒻᒪᓐ ᐅᒥᐊᕐᔪᐊᑦ ᑎᑭᓴᕋᐃᓂᓴᐅᖁᔭᐅᖃᑕᖅᑐᑎᒃ ᐅᑭᐊᕋᑖᖅᑎᓪᓗᒍ. I remember in 1993 at the leaders summit there was a motion raised to have the cargo ships come earlier in the fall.

He is not talking about the annual sealift, but about construction materials and supplies. There are no roads in Nunavut*; every­thing has to be brought in by air or sea. If things arrive too late, you won’t be able to use them until the following year.

* Except, of course, the ones leading directly from a mine to the nearest airport. You gotta keep your priorities straight.

tamanna kamagigialilauqsimajara kamagijarialik 1993-mi. ᑕᒪᓐᓇ ᑲᒪᒋᒋᐊᓕᓚᐅᖅᓯᒪᔭᕋ ᑲᒪᒋᔭᕆᐊᓕᒃ 1993-ᒥ. I started working on this issue back in 1993.
tussiralaursimagatta tikisarainirsauqataqullugit umi[a]rjuat, piluaqtumi marruunni nunaliujuunni iqquliutigiqaujaanni. ᑐᔅᓯᕋᓚᐅᕐᓯᒪᒐᑦᑕ ᑎᑭᓴᕋᐃᓂᕐᓴᐅᖃᑕᖁᓪᓗᒋᑦ ᐅᒥ[ᐊ]ᕐᔪᐊᑦ, ᐱᓗᐊᖅᑐᒥ ᒪᕐᕉᓐᓂ ᓄᓇᓕᐅᔫᓐᓂ ᐃᖅᑯᓕᐅᑎᒋᖃᐅᔮᓐᓂ. We had requested an earlier arrival for the ships, especially in the two communities that I have mentioned.
uqaujjaulauqtunga tussirariaqaniraqtaullunga guutimut amma tussiarlunga siku auksarainirsauqullugu. ᐅᖃᐅᔾᔭᐅᓚᐅᖅᑐᖓ ᑐᔅᓯᕋᕆᐊᖃᓂᕋᖅᑕᐅᓪᓗᖓ ᒎᑎᒧᑦ ᐊᒻᒪ ᑐᔅᓯᐊᕐᓗᖓ ᓯᑯ ᐊᐅᒃᓴᕋᐃᓂᕐᓴᐅᖁᓪᓗᒍ. I was told that I would have to make a request to God and pray that the ice would melt a lot sooner than it actually did.

Um . . . Mr Puqiqnak . . . do you think you could possibly have another conversation with God and tell him you didn’t mean it?

kisianili, tamanna pinguangungimman, taimanna apirijaulaurama. ᑭᓯᐊᓂᓕ, ᑕᒪᓐᓇ ᐱᖑᐊᖑᖏᒻᒪᓐ, ᑕᐃᒪᓐᓇ ᐊᐱᕆᔭᐅᓚᐅᕋᒪ. However, this is not a joke, I was asked that question.

It is definitely no joke. When the ice you thought was solidly frozen for another month turns out to be not so solid, you may consider yourself lucky if all you lose is your legs.

tamanna pijjutigillugu, mistu uqaqti, tamanna asijjijaangippan, umiarjuat tikinnasaaqataqatasuli, ᑕᒪᓐᓇ ᐱᔾᔪᑎᒋᓪᓗᒍ, ᒥᔅᑐ ᐅᖃᖅᑎ, ᑕᒪᓐᓇ ᐊᓯᔾᔨᔮᖏᑉᐸᓐ, ᐅᒥᐊᕐᔪᐊᑦ ᑎᑭᓐᓇᓵᖃᑕᖃᑕᓱᓕ, For that reason, Mr. Speaker, if this is not going to change, if cargo shipments still arrive late in the season,
tamanna asijjingippan aqqijaangimman kisiani uqusisarainirsauqataliqan. ᑕᒪᓐᓇ ᐊᓯᔾᔨᖏᑉᐸᓐ ᐊᖅᑭᔮᖏᒻᒪᓐ ᑭᓯᐊᓂ ᐅᖁᓯᓴᕋᐃᓂᕐᓴᐅᖃᑕᓕᖃᓐ. if this doesn’t change it will not resolve anything unless the season starts warming up a lot earlier.

Bite your tongue.

Relax and Pull the Trigger . . .

On 29 October, 1999, the Honorable James Arvaluk of Nanulik passes along some useful information.

uqausiqagalangkikkaluaqtugut niuviqpaktaktinnit kisianili utausikmik uqausiqarumagama. ᐅᖃᐅᓯᖃᒐᓚᖕᑭᒃᑲᓗᐊᖅᑐᒍᑦ ᓂᐅᕕᖅᐸᒃᑕᒃᑎᓐᓂᑦ ᑭᓯᐊᓂᓕ ᐅᑕᐅᓯᒃᒥᒃ ᐅᖃᐅᓯᖃᕈᒪᒐᒪ. Usually we don’t comment about retail products here but I would like to make an exception.
iqqanaijaqtigijaulluta uvvaluunniit maligaliuqtiulluta, ᐃᖅᑲᓇᐃᔭᖅᑎᒋᔭᐅᓪᓗᑕ ᐅᕝᕙᓘᓐᓃᑦ ᒪᓕᒐᓕᐅᖅᑎᐅᓪᓗᑕ, As employees or public servants or members of the Legislative Assembly,
ilaannikkut sinigunnailiqqasuungugapta isumaalugillugit iqqanairijarialivut. ᐃᓛᓐᓂᒃᑯᑦ ᓯᓂᒍᓐᓇᐃᓕᖅᑲᓲᖑᒐᑉᑕ ᐃᓱᒫᓗᒋᓪᓗᒋᑦ ᐃᖅᑲᓇᐃᕆᔭᕆᐊᓕᕗᑦ. we have a hard time sleeping sometimes because of all the jobs that we have to do.
viktuarijamualaurama ilinniaqtulirinirmut ministait katimaniqaqtillugit, ᕕᒃᑐᐊᕆᔭᒧᐊᓚᐅᕋᒪ ᐃᓕᓐᓂᐊᖅᑐᓕᕆᓂᕐᒧᑦ ᒥᓂᔅᑕᐃᑦ ᑲᑎᒪᓂᖃᖅᑎᓪᓗᒋᑦ, When I went to Victoria for an Education Ministers’ Conference,
nuliama qiniqulauqsimangmanga nipimik qikaruksimaqtumik saimanaqtumik ammalu unnukkut sinnaksautigijunnaqtugu. ᓄᓕᐊᒪ ᕿᓂᖁᓚᐅᖅᓯᒪᖕᒪᖓ ᓂᐱᒥᒃ ᕿᑲᕈᒃᓯᒪᖅᑐᒥᒃ ᓴᐃᒪᓇᖅᑐᒥᒃ ᐊᒻᒪᓗ ᐅᓐᓄᒃᑯᑦ ᓯᓐᓇᒃᓴᐅᑎᒋᔪᓐᓇᖅᑐᒍ. my wife told me to look for a tape recording that would be soothing and serene and would put me to sleep at night.
apirilaurakku qanuittullaringimik pijaria­qaqtugim­mangaarma ᐊᐱᕆᓚᐅᕋᒃᑯ ᖃᓄᐃᑦᑐᓪᓚᕆᖏᒥᒃ ᐱᔭᕆᐊ­ᖃᖅᑐᒋᒻ­ᒪᖔᕐᒪ So when I asked her what particular tape I should be looking for
isumalaurmat silamiigvalunngiaqtuni nunami ᐃᓱᒪᓚᐅᕐᒪᑦ ᓯᓚᒦᒡᕙᓗᙱᐊᖅᑐᓂ ᓄᓇᒥ she suggested wilderness type tunes with the sound of the environment
uqautilluninga qasujtitiginiarniraqtuniuk timinnut ammalu isumaa­lutikka puigurniarniraqtunigit, ᐅᖃᐅᑎᓪᓗᓂᖓ ᖃᓱᔾᑎᑎᒋᓂᐊᕐᓂᕋᖅᑐᓂᐅᒃ ᑎᒥᓐᓄᑦ ᐊᒻᒪᓗ ᐃᓱᒫ­ᓗᑎᒃᑲ ᐳᐃᒍᕐᓂᐊᕐᓂᕋᖅᑐᓂᒋᑦ, and she said that would soothe me and that would take away my worries,
taimali niuvililauqsimagama. ᑕᐃᒪᓕ ᓂᐅᕕᓕᓚᐅᖅᓯᒪᒐᒪ. so I bought one.
unnualluakkut iqqummarama ammalu iniliqqi­gunna­iligama isumaaluruluujamut qautillugu kamagijarialingnik, ᐅᓐᓄᐊᓪᓗᐊᒃᑯᑦ ᐃᖅᑯᒻᒪᕋᒪ ᐊᒻᒪᓗ ᐃᓂᓕᖅᑭ­ᒍᓐᓇ­ᐃᓕᒐᒪ ᐃᓱᒫᓗᕈᓘᔭᒧᑦ ᖃᐅᑎᓪᓗᒍ ᑲᒪᒋᔭᕆᐊᓕᖕᓂᒃ, When I got up in the middle of the night and I couldn’t go back to sleep because I was worried about what I was going to be doing the next day,
nipi nigliqtililauqsimagakku qasusarasuaqtunga. ᓂᐱ ᓂᒡᓕᖅᑎᓕᓚᐅᖅᓯᒪᒐᒃᑯ ᖃᓱᓴᕋᓱᐊᖅᑐᖓ. I put on the tape to soothe myself.
niglirami uumajurlunnguanguglutik ammalu silamiigvalunnguaqtut tusaalirakkit ᓂᒡᓕᕋᒥ ᐆᒪᔪᕐᓗᙳᐊᖑᒡᓗᑎᒃ ᐊᒻᒪᓗ ᓯᓚᒦᒡᕙᓗᙳᐊᖅᑐᑦ ᑐᓵᓕᕋᒃᑭᑦ When I put it on the sound of animals and the outdoors came on.
qittaivalliatuinnaliqtunga ammalu qittaillarikkama. ᕿᑦᑕᐃᕙᓪᓕᐊᑐᐃᓐᓇᓕᖅᑐᖓ ᐊᒻᒪᓗ ᕿᑦᑕᐃᓪᓚᕆᒃᑲᒪ. I became more awake and very, very alert.
taimali qaujimasikautigillunga parnagiaqalirningnik angunasugiarnialirama. ᑕᐃᒪᓕ ᖃᐅᔨᒪᓯᑲᐅᑎᒋᓪᓗᖓ ᐸᕐᓇᒋᐊᖃᓕᕐᓂᖕᓂᒃ ᐊᖑᓇᓱᒋᐊᕐᓂᐊᓕᕋᒪ. My instinct was to get ready and go hunting.
inungnulli tamakkua nipiit niuviangu­jaria­qaqtugi­nngitakka. ᐃᓄᖕᓄᓪᓕ ᑕᒪᒃᑯᐊ ᓂᐲᑦ ᓂᐅᕕᐊᖑ­ᔭᕆᐊᖃᖅᑐᒋ­ᙱᑕᒃᑲ. So I don’t suggest those tapes be bought by Inuit.

Keep that in mind the next time you are shopping for gifts for your male Inuit relatives.

Incidentally, if nanulik means “a place with lots of polar bears”, I can only say: Better him than me. Fortunately it turns out to be a made-up name for an electoral district in eastern Kivalliq, comprising Coral Harbour—which, as its name indicates, is an island—and Chester­field Inlet—which is an inlet. The latter is also known as Iglulig­aarjuk, meaning “place with few houses”. The name is accurate if you’re contrasting it with the booming metropolis of Coral Harbour, alias Salliq. Or Salliit, depending on how many of them you believe there are.

Mr Arvaluk represents a bit over a thousand people—except when, as here, he is wearing his other hat as Education Minister. Then he’s representing the whole Territory. But, to compen­sate for the sleepless nights, he gets to put “The Honorable” in front of his name. At least he did in 1999. Shortly afterward he was uncere­moni­ously kicked out, on the grounds of having behaved less than honorably. This appears to be a recurring problem. But give them time; it’s a brand-new Territory. It’s hard to abandon traditional offences like assault and domestic violence in favor of respectable grownup ones like bribery and insider trading.

How do you Say “Oscar” in Inuktitut?

On 21 May 1999, the Honorable Ed Picco—the same one who will discourse so eloquently on bingo a few years down the line—eats crow:

uqaqtii, atuagaq tallimirmi maligaliurtinut quvianartunit tissinaqijunilunniit uqausiqarpakkaluarmata. ᐅᖃᖅᑏ, ᐊᑐᐊᒐᖅ ᑕᓪᓕᒥᕐᒥ ᒪᓕᒐᓕᐅᕐᑎᓄᑦ ᖁᕕᐊᓇᕐᑐᓂᑦ ᑎᔅᓯᓇᕿᔪᓂᓗᓐᓃᑦ ᐅᖃᐅᓯᖃᕐᐸᒃᑲᓗᐊᕐᒪᑕ. Mr. Speaker, traditionally Fridays members make statements of a lighter or more humorous note.

Come to think of it, it is Friday today, isn’t it. Thanks for clearing that up, Mr. Picco.

ullumi taimaivjajaanginnama, ᐅᓪᓗᒥ ᑕᐃᒪᐃᕝᔭ<ᐃᓐᔅ>ᔮᖏᓐᓇᒪ, I am not able to do that today,

Are you wondering about that vjajaa? It’s a recurring problem in today’s record, unchanged between the Blues and final version. My best guess is that it’s a typo: } (which becomes ᕝ or syllable-final v in Prosyl) by mistake for ] (one of the long-vowel dots).

uqausiqariaqarama isumaalutigijannik ippaksaq atulaurtannit maligaliurvingmi. ᐅᖃᐅᓯᖃᕆᐊᖃᕋᒪ ᐃᓱᒫᓗᑎᒋᔭᓐᓂᒃ ᐃᑉᐸᒃᓴᖅ ᐊᑐᓚᐅᕐᑕᓐᓂᑦ ᒪᓕᒐᓕᐅᕐᕕᖕᒥ. as I have to speak to the serious concern that occurred yesterday in this house.

I do believe that’s a historical first. It’s a (be)causative verb form used the way it’s supposed to be used: in a secondary clauses. In general, legis­lators—or their professional trans­lators—seem to throw them in wherever they feel like it. This may explain why I have never succeeded in locating an Inuk­titut grammar that is less than 120 years old:* they’ve all been recalled for a reality check, to be followed by a thorough rewrite.

Then again, it may just be the Inuktitut version of prefacing every utterance with “Whereas . . .”

* With “not printed in Fraktur” as an optional extra. But the alter­natives tend to be worse, so I won’t insist.

uqaqtii, uqausiungmat tavvani katimajjutivinirnit, ukua katimajjutivut, ᐅᖃᖅᑏ, ᐅᖃᐅᓯᐅᖕᒪᑦ ᑕᕝᕙᓂ ᑲᑎᒪᔾᔪᑎᕕᓂᕐᓂᑦ, ᐅᑯᐊ ᑲᑎᒪᔾᔪᑎᕗᑦ, Mr. Speaker, as indicated in Hansard, on our Orders of the Day,
naasautilik 16, nalunairutinit piqujivungaarutinut sivulliqpaamit uqalimaqtauninginnut maligaksait amma naasautilik 18, sivulliqpaami uqalimartauningit maligaksait, ᓈᓴᐅᑎᓕᒃ 16, ᓇᓗᓇᐃᕈᑎᓂᑦ ᐱᖁᔨᕗᖔᕈᑎᓄᑦ ᓯᕗᓪᓕᖅᐹᒥᑦ ᐅᖃᓕᒪᖅᑕᐅᓂᖏᓐᓄᑦ ᒪᓕᒐᒃᓴᐃᑦ ᐊᒻᒪ ᓈᓴᐅᑎᓕᒃ 18, ᓯᕗᓪᓕᖅᐹᒥ ᐅᖃᓕᒪᕐᑕᐅᓂᖏᑦ ᒪᓕᒐᒃᓴᐃᑦ, number 16, Notices of Motions for First Reading of Bills, and number 18, First Reading of Bills,
ajjigiikasangmatik, uqaqtii, ajjigiikasattiarmatik. ᐊᔾᔨᒌᑲᓴᖕᒪᑎᒃ, ᐅᖃᖅᑏ, ᐊᔾᔨᒌᑲᓴᑦᑎᐊᕐᒪᑎᒃ. are very similar, Mr. Speaker, very similar.

You can see his point. After a few months in the Legislative Assembly, phrases like “Notices of Motions” and “First Reading of Bills” must become just so much white noise.

ullugasarjungnit pilimmaksaqłuta, ajurunniirsaqłuta amma ilinnianiqaqłuta . . . ᐅᓪᓗᒐᓴᕐᔪᖕᓂᑦ ᐱᓕᒻᒪᒃᓴᖅᖢᑕ, ᐊᔪᕈᓐᓃᕐᓴᖅᖢᑕ ᐊᒻᒪ ᐃᓕᓐᓂᐊᓂᖃᖅᖢᑕ . . . After several days of practice, rehearsal and method acting training . . .
maligaliurti: ᒪᓕᒐᓕᐅᕐᑎ: A Member:
. . . atuutiqalaungittut . . . ᐊᑑᑎᖃᓚᐅᖏᑦᑐᑦ . . . didn’t work
>> iglartut >> ᐃᒡᓚᕐᑐᑦ >> Laughter

Incidentally, the Hansard’s translators let you laugh in two different ways: ᐃᒡᓚᖅᑐᑦ (iglaqtut) and ᐃᔭᖅᑐᑦ (ijaqtut). Or, depending on the orthographic whim of the moment, ᐃᒡᓚᕐᑐᑦ (iglartut) and ᐃᔭᕐᑐᑦ (ijartut). In some dialects, the ᐃᔭᖅ- (ijaq-) root means “laugh” in the sense of “scoff” or “jeer”. Can we stipulate that the translators do not speak those particular dialects?

niqtunaqtuq piku: ᓂᖅᑐᓇᖅᑐᖅ ᐱᑯ: Hon. Ed Picco:
saqqiijunnalauqtunga sulillattaaqtumit ajjinganit ministamit tammauqajumit katimajjutinik. ᓴᖅᑮᔪᓐᓇᓚᐅᖅᑐᖓ ᓱᓕᓪᓚᑦᑖᖅᑐᒥᑦ ᐊᔾᔨᖓᓂᑦ ᒥᓂᔅᑕᒥᑦ ᑕᒻᒪᐅᖃᔪᒥᑦ ᑲᑎᒪᔾᔪᑎᓂᒃ. . . . I was able to pull off a totally realistic portrayal of a Minister mistaken in the Orders of the Day.
iillattaaq, uqaqtii, ajurittialuamut, ᐄᓪᓚᑦᑖᖅ, ᐅᖃᖅᑏ, ᐊᔪᕆᑦᑎᐊᓗᐊᒧᑦ, Indeed, Mr. Speaker, my portrayal was so realistic,
niqtunaqtuq ing, maligaliurvingmi sivuliqti, unuqtut maligaliuqtiit, tiiviikkut tautuktut amma, ilaulutik tusaqtulirivjijiit, ᓂᖅᑐᓇᖅᑐᖅ ᐃᖕ, ᒪᓕᒐᓕᐅᕐᕕᖕᒥ ᓯᕗᓕᖅᑎ, ᐅᓄᖅᑐᑦ ᒪᓕᒐᓕᐅᖅᑏᑦ, ᑏᕖᒃᑯᑦ ᑕᐅᑐᒃᑐᑦ ᐊᒻᒪ, ᐃᓚᐅᓗᑎᒃ ᑐᓴᖅᑐᓕᕆᕝᔨ<ᐃᓐᔅ>ᔩᑦ, Mr. Ng the House Leader, many of the members, the TV audience and, indeed the media,
isumaliqtilaurtakka qaujimanasugijaunanga ajjivgigiinginninginnik naasauvtitiik 16 amma 18. ᐃᓱᒪᓕᖅᑎᓚᐅᕐᑕᒃᑲ ᖃᐅᔨᒪᓇᓱᒋᔭᐅᓇᖓ ᐊᔾᔨᕝᒋ<ᐃᓐᔅ>ᒌᖏᓐᓂᖏᓐᓂᒃ ᓈᓴᐅᕝᑎ<ᐃᓐᔅ>ᑏᒃ 16 ᐊᒻᒪ 18. were fooled into thinking I didn’t know the difference between number 16 and number 18.

I did say that the } was a recurring problem. In case anyone wondered, the last two lines look like this if you don’t have the right font:

`w9M5`b6, sc6]t, xJE5txlxj5, i6gN6g6 w1, moZos3=1u yKo6t, sk6g5 moZos65]t, `=4f5 bsg4g5 x7m, wMslt4 gn6goE}]p5, whmo6tMs3b4v cspmNhQ/sNz x0p}]Qq8iq8i4 `Nns}t4 !^ x7m !*.

>> iglartut >> ᐃᒡᓚᕐᑐᑦ >> Laughter
uqaqtii, ullumikkanniq piviqaqtittiniartunga pilimmaksautinit maligaliurtiuqatinnut, ᐅᖃᖅᑏ, ᐅᓪᓗᒥᒃᑲᓐᓂᖅ ᐱᕕᖃᖅᑎᑦᑎᓂᐊᕐᑐᖓ ᐱᓕᒻᒪᒃᓴᐅᑎᓂᑦ ᒪᓕᒐᓕᐅᕐᑎᐅᖃᑎᓐᓄᑦ, Mr. Speaker, later today I will be prepared to give acting lessons to the members,
amma piviqarninnit qujalijumallunga maligaliurtiuqatinnik ikajurninginnut amma isumagijaqarninginnut tamatumunga. ᐊᒻᒪ ᐱᕕᖃᕐᓂᓐᓂᑦ ᖁᔭᓕᔪᒪᓪᓗᖓ ᒪᓕᒐᓕᐅᕐᑎᐅᖃᑎᓐᓂᒃ ᐃᑲᔪᕐᓂᖏᓐᓄᑦ ᐊᒻᒪ ᐃᓱᒪᒋᔭᖃᕐᓂᖏᓐᓄᑦ ᑕᒪᑐᒧᖓ. and I will also take this opportunity to thank the members for your help and consideration on the process.
uqaqtii, ajungijjusiara askauniraqtaujuq piniartara nuqqangakainnalirutta ullumi amma qaiquvakka maligaliurtiuqatikka pivtataaliruma. ᐅᖃᖅᑏ, ᐊᔪᖏᔾᔪᓯᐊᕋ ᐊᔅᑲᐅᓂᕋᖅᑕᐅᔪᖅ ᐱᓂᐊᕐᑕᕋ ᓄᖅᑲᖓᑲᐃᓐᓇᓕᕈᑦᑕ ᐅᓪᓗᒥ ᐊᒻᒪ ᖃᐃᖁᕙᒃᑲ ᒪᓕᒐᓕᐅᕐᑎᐅᖃᑎᒃᑲ ᐱᕝᑕ<ᐃᓐᔅ>ᑖᓕᕈᒪ. Mr. Speaker I will be picking up the Oscar on the break later today and I invite the members to attend with me.

Do you suppose the translators popped that pi- into piniartara as a place­holder, intending to come back later and fill in a more exact verb? But by the time they’d got done with qai- (come) and pitaaq- (get) there wasn’t much left for a third verb to do:


will shortly (-niaq-, the near but not immediate future)

do something-or-other (-tara, Transitive or Specific verb ending, I ... it)

to the thing known as the aska*.

* aska + -u- (noun-to-verb converter) + -niraqtau- + -juq. That final -juq, alias -tuq, is generally a verb ending, but here it’s the thing that does all this—in other words, your basic participle or agent. Harper calls it the “gerundive”, but he’s just showing off.

If you really want to split hairs, you can decompose the middle piece into -niraq- (“say that something is...”) + -taq- (noun that the preceding verb is done to, aka the passive participle) + -u- again, for a grand total of three noun/verb toggles in six syllables.

Just don’t quote me. Remember, I’m making this up as I go along.

qujannamiik. ᖁᔭᓐᓇᒦᒃ. Thank you.
>> pattaktuqtut >> ᐸᑦᑕᒃᑐᖅᑐᑦ >> Applause

. . . And that’s how you say “Oscar” in Inuktitut.