You Not Shame?

Word of the Day:  Embarrassing

The word embarrassing came up recently and as I thought about the word I wondered if I had any reflections I cared to share in a blog post. I have had many embarrassing moments in my life–maybe too many and too embarrassing to list here. Maybe so many that I’m just not embarrassed about them any more and can’t even remember them. Or maybe my memory is just going down the tubes, like my vision.

In Hilo, we often use the word shame in place of embarrassment.  It isn’t quite the same but thinking of the word embarrassing made me think of the word shame and the place it has had in my life.

Should I be embarrased of this photo?  Nah, I not shame.

According to Merriam-Webster, here are the definitions.

Embarrassment (noun):

  • the state of feeling foolish in front of others

  • something or someone that causes a person or group to look or feel foolish

Shame (noun):

  •  a feeling of guilt, regret, or sadness that you have because you know you have done something wrong
  • ability to feel guilt, regret, or embarrassment

  • dishonor or disgrace

Growing up, I heard the following pidgin phrases. I still hear them and in fact still use them in my daily life.

  • Some shame!
  • No make us shame.
  • You not shame?

These uttered phrases were intended to make us think about our actions and how they affect us and others. We are not just individuals but part of something larger–we are part of families, clubs, organizations, businesses, and teams. In our small town and all over the world, we do not want to disgrace or dishonor those who support us. We make sure to show respect and appreciation for all our positive influences in our lives for without them, we would not be … well, us.

I am now a parent and am trying to raise my children to be aware of this philosophy. No make shame–don’t bring shame upon yourself or upon those you represent–whether it be your family, your team, your club, your school, your town–our town–Hilo.  Living Hilo Style.



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