I’ve lived in seven states spanning from the East Coast to the Midwest to the West Coast and, of course Hawaii. I’ve probably driven through at least 30 states. Hawaii seems to have the greatest number of “local” bumper stickers.
For the past couple weeks, I made a list of bumper stickers I saw while driving around from the mountain to the ocean from the windward to the leeward side. (if I may borrow the words from a song they play here ad nauseum – with apologies to John Cruz fans)
The bumper sticker I see most often is “Live Aloha“. The first time I saw it, I felt all warm and tingly. The 100th time I saw it, I still felt all warm and tingly.
Next up, the cranky favorite: “SLOW DOWN – THIS AIN’T THE MAINLAND”. They definitely got that one right… Hawaii is not the mainland – for better and for worse.
“EDDIE WOULD GO” – a tribute to Eddie Aikau, the Hawaiian lifeguard and surfer who would brave the huge waves to rescue swimmers in trouble. Sadly, he was lost at sea when the Hokule’a, a double-hulled voyaging canoe, capsized in 1978. Eddie paddled off to a distant shore to get help for the rest of the crew and was never seen again.
“KEEP IT KAILUA” – I see this one a lot since I live in Kailua. This sticker is favored by Kailua residents who aren’t happy about the proliferation of tourists and vacation rentals in Kailua (sorry, Mr. President…)
“SHARE KAILUA” – This one was created in response to the above one.
“KEEP THE COUNTRY COUNTRY” – This sentiment is popular with residents living on the North Shore who oppose development there.
“GOT POI?” – Hawaiian twist to the “got milk?” slogan
“SAMOAN PRIDE” ; “TONGAN PRIDE“; “HAWAIIAN PRIDE” – reflects some of Hawaii’s cultural diversity. Maybe I can get a “SLOVAK/HUNGARIAN PRIDE” sticker for my car.
“KAU INOA” – this literally means “place your name”. Native Hawaiians are encouraged to sign the Kau Inoa registry as a first step in establishing a new Native Hawaiian government.
“HAWAIIAN CULTURE – NOT FOR SALE” – I guess this one is self-explanatory. You are not likely to see this one along with a “Live Aloha” sticker.
“I’M HAWAIIAN AND I VOTE” – OK, now this is a slogan I have never really understood. This is along the lines of “I’m the NRA and I vote” or “I’m Pro-Life and I vote”, etc, etc.
I have to ask: Does this imply that most Hawaiians don’t vote, but the driver of this particular car does?
Or, is it supposed to influence a potential political candidate driving behind the car who then may think twice about their position on Hawaiian issues because here is a Hawaiian that votes?
The fact that you vote should be a given; not something you proudly proclaim and then use as some kind of veiled threat… I’m not trying to specifically pick on Hawaiian voters here. I think anyone with a “I’m xxxxx and I vote” is misguided. IMHO.
Now that I’ve not-so-carefully treaded through the above minefield, I will end this post with this appropriate bumper sticker:
“AINOKEA” – a local pidgin term meaning “I don’t care”. Don’t even get me started on that one!