When you live in Hawaii, your couch inevitably serves as a place for visitors to crash/a launching point for friends who just moved to the island, but thanks to certain Adam Sandler and Russell Brand movies, people arrive with preconceived ideas about life in Hawaii. Here are 21 things you’ll have to shed a light on for FOB (fresh off the boat) friends.
1. We don’t wear shoes in the house
Really, never. Always take off your shoes before entering a home.
2. Saying "ohana," "mahalo," and "honu" doesn't make you sound local
"Family," "thank you," and "sea turtle" in good old-fashioned English get the point across.
... but a lot of people do. It’s been estimated that the average person in Hawaii eats 16 cans of Spam each year and there are 19 flavors. Spam musubis are everywhere, McDonald’s has Spam on its menu, and there’s even Spam-flavored macadamia nuts.
4. Yep, "pupu" is pronounced like "poopoo"
It means appetizer and it's on most menus. Just try not to giggle when ordering a pupu steak or a pupu platter.
5. We don’t walk around barefoot unless we’re at the beach
Wear shoes in stores and restaurants, seriously. Going barefoot in public is just icky.
6. We don’t all surf
Plenty of people raised in Hawaii have never surfed. Seriously.
7. Hawaii Five-0 isn’t real
And we don’t really watch it. Ever since Scott Caan publicly dissed Hawaiian food, he’s on locals’ shit lists.
8. Some of us live minutes from an active lava flow
It’s been flowing for 30 years and it doesn’t feel like a big deal.
9. We have our own version of fast food
Bypass McDonald’s and go local with L&L Drive-Inn or Zippy’s.
10. We call flip-flops slippers
Saying flip-flops is a dead giveaway that you’re fresh off the plane.
11. Trying to speak pidgin won’t make you fit in
There’s nothing worse than someone who’s been on the island for a week saying, “Brah, da kine, and li dat.”
12. A flower behind a woman’s right or left ear doesn’t actually mean single or taken
Traditionally, a flower behind the right ear means single and the left means taken. But it’s not something women really think about when wearing a flower, so don’t assume a woman’s status because of it.
13. Coconuts aren’t naturally husked, fuzzy, and brown like in supermarkets
Keep an eye out for roadside fruit stands with fresh coconuts. They’re much more delicious than canned coconut water in stores.