Te Reo With Mnemonics: Protest and Politics Words

Protest – porotēhi

A bunch of protesters are sitting by a fence. A young man walks up to them, points at a teddy bear they have, and says “I don’t want to disturb your protest, but can I borrow your teddy?”

Solidarity – kotahitanga

A number of workers form a line of solidarity where their arms are linked inside a giant coathanger.

Clash/Battle/Conflict – pakanga

Two cars clash over a parking spot. Their occupants get out and start fighting, and then bystanders join in, until it’s a big battle.

Validity/Legality/Authority – whaimana

A Police officer goes in to make an arrest, but a fireman stops him and says “Sorry, only firemen have any authority here.”

to elect/appoint/place – whakatū (-hia,-ngia,-ria,-tia)

A elderly minister appoints a man as his official sheep shagger. He says “This job requires you to fuck one sheep every day.” The man says “Hell, if you appoint me, I’ll fuck two.”

to have a stake/claim, to possess a right/interest – whaipānga

A giant pie sits on a table, and a number of vipers bite into it to stake their claim for a piece of it.

Stakeholders – hunga whaipānga

In a corporate boardroom, a row of men are lined up holding stakes. In front of them, a man uses a stake to hang a dead viper on the wall. He turns to the others and says “If you want to be a stakeholder, you first have to hang a viper.”

Strike, to go on strike – porotū

A woman dressed as a nurse knocks on a man’s door and says “We’re going on strike tomorrow, so I want to borrow a placard.” The man says “Sure,” and shows her his collection of placards. She then says “Actually, can I borrow two?”

to answer/reply/respond – whakautu

A man gazes out a window through a pair of binoculars. “Can you see a far truck or a far train over there?” a woman asks, but he does not respond. “Hey, answer me!” she says. The man replies: “I can see a far car or two.”

Trouble/Dispute/Problem – raruraru

A woman is sitting in her car talking to a mechanic. He asks “What is the problem?” She tries to start the motor and, instead of starting, it just goes raruraruraruraru…

to arrange/organise/put in order – whakarite

A pornographic film director is speaking to one of his actors about the filming schedule. He motions to a naked woman and explains “Now, I’ve arranged for you to fuck Rita…”

Organiser – kaiwhakarite

The organiser of a karate festival, an effusively homosexual man, explains that the festival slogan challenges people to go “Gay for karate.”

to make good/better, to commend/praise/approve of – whakapai

On television, a man holds up a pie and says “They’ve improved these pies so much that I no longer go to the bakery to eat a pie – now I go there to fuck a pie!”

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This wordlist is an except from Learn Te Reo With Mnemonics, a book being compiled by Jeff Ngatai for an expected release at the beginning of 2020.

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