Martha Tsutsui Billins (host): Hello, and welcome to Field Notes, a podcast about linguistic fieldwork. I’m Martha Tsutsui Billins, and today’s episode is with N. Haʻalilio Solomon. Haʻalilio Solomon is an Instructor at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa at the Kawaihuelani Center for Hawaiian Language, where he is also a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Linguistics. He is also a translator for ‘ōlelo Hawaiʻi with Awaiaulu and Hoʻopulapula, and his studies involve language documentation and revitalization, as well as linguistic ideologies and attitudes surrounding ʻōlelo Hawaiʻi. He is the author of the forthcoming book chapter Rescuing Maunalua: Shifting Nomenclatures and the Reconfiguration of Space in Hawaii Kai.
Haʻa is someone whose work I’ve admired for a long time. He is not only a researcher, but also an activist. He has a radio show that he does completely in Hawaiian, and he is also involved in translation and interpretation and teaching, so he does a lot of things, and it was really interesting to hear about his story and all of the amazing work that he is doing, and his thoughts and his perspective on what it means to be part of a language revitalization movement and what that entails.
MTB: Hi, Haʻa. How are you?
N. Haʻalilio Solomon: Aloha, Martha.
N. Haʻalilio Solomon: I’m doing well.
MTB: Well, thanks for staying up late for Field Notes. I really appreciate you taking the time.
N. Haʻalilio Solomon: Mahalo for having me.
MTB: Yeah. Mahalo. So to start, can you tell us about how you first got started in linguistics?
N. Haʻalilio Solomon: Yeah. I really always, for as long as I can remember, I enjoyed languages, and then I discovered, probably around 12 years old, I had a knack for learning other languages. It was just sort of my — other kids, some kids are good at math, some kids are good at sports. I was good at seeing the patterns in languages and also kind of mimicking sounds, so I kind of played to my strengths, learned Spanish at a — probably by the time I was 13. I was speaking Spanish pretty well, and then I came to the university, where I formally started learning ʻōlelo Hawaiʻi, and then I studied in Italy for a semester abroad, learned Italian.
MTB: Oh, wow.
N. Haʻalilio Solomon: And started going to Tahiti. I started going in 2009, and at least once every year since, so I’ve been there several times. So I picked up French and Tahitian going down there. In 2014, when I entered into grad school as an unclassified graduate student, I took classes all over in all kinds of different departments. Hawaiian Studies, English, History, Hawaiian Language, and then I had never taken a linguistics class besides the really entry-level 100… I think it’s 102 on our campus, but other than that, I’d never taken a linguistics class, and I don’t really remember whose idea it was, but in 2016 when I finally applied to the linguistics master’s program at UH, I got in, and I’ve been there ever since.
MTB: And now you’re doing your Ph.D. Right?
N. Haʻalilio Solomon: Yeah. I finished my master’s in 2018, and I went right into my Ph.D., so I’m two years into that. I am technically ABD, but this whole COVID situation has kind of put things up in the air, but yeah. I’m halfway into my Ph.D. program in the linguistics department at UH Mānoa.
MTB: Can you tell us more about your research? So you mentioned that you’re ABD, so what is your dissertati- — in the US it’s called a dissertation, right, not a thesis?
N. Haʻalilio Solomon: The master’s programs do theses, and then Ph.D. programs are usually called dissertations.
MTB: Okay, so it’s the opposite of the UK.
N. Haʻalilio Solomon: It’s so confusing.
MTB: It’s so confusing, yeah. So you’re ABD, all but dissertation, so can you talk a little bit about what your current research is on and what you’re writing your dissertation on?
N. Haʻalilio Solomon: So I’m writing my dissertation on the attitudes and ideologies that surround Hawaiian language. And it’s mostly because the Hawaiian language situation is pretty well known for being a successful model of revitalization. Hawaiian language, ʻōlelo Hawaiʻi, in the state of Hawaii is an official language alongside English since 1978. The Constitutional Convention named ʻōlelo Hawaiʻi an official language, so we have the sort of policy backing it. We have a climbing number of majors that declare a Hawaiian language major every semester every year. It’s pretty steady if not gradually climbing over the last 15, 20 years. So we have this sort of perceived economic value. And then there’s a very strong Hawaiian identity tied to it, and that social identity provides a social capital to the language, but there are still very much — very much — there’s still a significant notion that Hawaiian language only belongs in certain spaces, I find. And this is only because when I got asked to interpret for a few people who requested a Hawaiian-language interpreter for their court proceedings, the judge just kind of had this kind of mocking attitude, kind of attitude that they were wasting tax dollars, and she even said like, “Well, I know he speaks English, too, right?” Referring to the person I was interpreting for, who was essentially the defendant, the person I was interpreting for. And I had just five or ten minutes before witnessed a similar misdemeanor being heard in court that day in Tagalog, I believe it was, and nobody bats an eye when that happened. It was just regular, normal business, and then it comes time for the Hawaiian language case to be heard, and it just was a… There was a tension. There was a certain tension that — I wasn’t even on trial, but I kind of almost felt like… I felt heavily scrutinized as the interpreter, and I was thinking it’s sort of a double standard. It got me thinking. Why — these other languages in which court proceedings are interpreted aren’t even the official language of where we live, and yet there’s this attitude towards the official language, the co-official language. That’s one of the dimensions that I’m trying to uncover in my dissertation research. There’s so many others. There are positive, lots and lots of positive ideologies and attitudes surrounding ʻōlelo Hawaiʻi, like I said earlier. There’s a strong Hawaiian identity that really, I think, has guided the success of the whole campaign, the whole grassroots movement, but then there are also these intricate, really nuanced, really complex ideologies that are pretty negative.
MTB: Like pushing against the…
N. Haʻalilio Solomon: Right.
MTB: … positive ideologies.
N. Haʻalilio Solomon: And they’re limiting the scope and the range across which ʻōlelo Hawaiʻi probably could be revitalized if those attitudes weren’t sort of standing in the way.
MTB: Can we talk more about how language and identity are intertwined in Hawaii? Maybe you can speak about your own experience as a Hawaiian person.
N. Haʻalilio Solomon: Sure. So I have about 25 first cousins and then multiple second cousins, a pretty big family. I think I’m the only grandchild of my grandparents on my father’s side, on my Hawaiian side, who learned Hawaiian to this level, to this extent. I used to get like my cousins would call me, and my voicemail is in ʻōlelo Hawaiʻi, says what you would expect it to say, “Leave a message after the beep,” and they would say like, “Sorry, I don’t know what you said, but call me back.” And it’s intended to be humorous, I think, but there is — and this sort of goes back to this is another kind of thread in this thing that I’m, this story that I’m trying to tell — there are these undertones of maybe shame or…
MTB: Like defensiveness.
N. Haʻalilio Solomon: And even defensiveness. That’s a great word. And so I think we all know Hawaiians and non-Hawaiian locals alike and people looking at the example of Hawaiian language revitalization as a movement know that there is a strong component. Identity plays a strong part in that, but we’re still sort of navigating just how that kind of plays out in real-life situations, because I’ve also seen similar reactions on social media during the Protect Mauna Kea A’ole TMT movement which garnered like global attention.
N. Haʻalilio Solomon: The leaders of the movement would often do… At one point, they were doing daily sort of briefings and kind of updates from Mauna Kea, and for the first few minutes, Kaho’okahi Kanuha would use ʻōlelo Hawaiʻi, and so he’s using ʻōlelo Hawaiʻi, and he got asked to do an interview for a local news station, and I think that was even… There was like an extended interview that he was using ʻōlelo Hawaiʻi for. It was like a live video on social media, and somebody said, “Okay. Now in English for all of us Kanaka who can’t understand.” Right? So when comments like that come up, it sort of is an indication of some kind of underlying maybe…
MTB: Like attention.
N. Haʻalilio Solomon: … again, a shame, or maybe an insecurity that, “We’re both Hawaiian by blood, and you speak Hawaiian but I don’t. How does that play out? How does that make us different?” And these are really sensitive subjects, and they can be difficult to talk about, but so far, I’ve found that even just talking about them, if you approach it correctly, if you let everybody know your intention, your intentions, if it’s truly for the sake of moving forward, making progress, even coming to find a common ground, even finding, even getting to a cathartic space, a healing space where all of those negative emotions or negative reactions or just negative attitudes, negativity in general, can be transcended, then that’s progress. Certainly, this tension that these attitudes at play, these ideologies at play, that deserve some attention and discussion and research.
MTB: Yeah. Yeah, definitely. I’ve heard you say how the Hawaiian language does not have like an ethnic gatekeeping aspect to it the way that a lot of other smaller languages have. Can you talk more about that? Because this is something I’ve also noticed that ʻōlelo Hawaiʻi feels very inclusive to people who don’t have Hawaiian blood, but if they have an interest in learning the language, it does feel very welcoming. Can you share your thoughts on that?
N. Haʻalilio Solomon: Yeah, so as far as I know, when the ʻAha Pūnana Leo, which was the association of language nests, was established in 1983 and then they had their first school in 1984, and this is from a paper by Pila Wilson and his wife, Kauanoe Kamanā, champions, both champions for Hawaiian language revitalization on Hawaiʻi Island, the movement started with one rule: E Ola Ka ʻŌlelo Hawaiʻi, “Let Hawaiian language live.” And it was that simple, so it wasn’t exclusive to age, or ethnicity, or anything. It was, if you want to speak Hawaiian, if you’re interested in the future and the life of ʻōlelo Hawaiʻi in Hawaiʻi and beyond, then you can absolutely participate. So, it’s always been inclusive, and I think that’s been an important part that’s helped it succeed, helped the movement succeed. One of my mentors, Puakea Nogelmeier, said he was running the ‘Ahahui ‘Ōlelo Hawaiʻi, which was the Hawaiian Language Society, in the ‘80s, I believe, well into the ‘90s, and even in 2000 it sort of lost momentum. And then we tried to revive it. So actually technically, I’m the president. Technically, I’m the president of the ‘Ahahui ‘Ōlelo Hawaiʻi. We have had a hard time. It’s something about millennials trying to run a 501(c)(3) doesn’t work. Maybe it’s just us. I don’t know.
But Puakea, my mentor, Puakea Nogelmeier, was running it very, very — in its heyday, in the golden age of the ‘Ahahui, and so he certainly stepped up when we revived it in 2017, I think, and said, “I’m here to advise and support in whatever way you need, but make sure you don’t make this a race-based thing. That’ll be the quickest way to kill it is to make it exclusive.” Because so many people identify with Hawaiʻi. So many people love Hawaiʻi. So many people love the culture and just want a part of it and feel like they’re contributing back to these islands in a meaningful way — which can sometimes be detrimental, but for the most part, it’s very good, it’s a very positive thing. And so learning Hawaiian language is one of those ways that they can feel like they’re part of this bigger magic. So learning Hawaiian language has never been exclusive, based on what I know. I think there might be some like small, smaller transmissions of knowledge in a very cultural sort of ceremonial setting where that membership might be a little bit more…
N. Haʻalilio Solomon: … based on, yeah, restricted criteria and stuff like that, but…
MTB: Yeah. Yeah, that’s cool. It’s really cool. Can we talk about your work in language revitalization?
N. Haʻalilio Solomon: Yeah. I’ve always kind of… So I’ve taught Hawaiian language now for over 10 years. Most of that time has been at the university. I’ve also been a translator, and I just have a hard time, because I feel like I came into this scene, I guess, kind of unwittingly in 2005 when I first took my Hawaiian language class 101 at UH, and I feel like so much of the groundwork had been laid before, so much of the progress and success had already been, happened and had been celebrated, and I was just coming in sort of 30, 30 years in. So I don’t know at what point I’m allowed to use that term and apply it to myself. I work with Dannii Yarbrough in our department as well, linguistics at UH, and she and I have, we made videos about using a moolelo, or a traditional story in Hawaiian language, that’s intended to actually be a teaching tool as well as a language acquisition kind of assessment tool instrument. I do a weekly Hawaiian language, Hawaiian music, radio show on our college radio station called KTUH. My show is called Kīpuka Leo, and it’s entirely in ʻōlelo Hawaiʻi. I play really, really old vintage vinyl Hawaiian music. So that’s something that listeners can always rely on being able to tune in from three to six on Sundays and hear Hawaiian music and hear Hawaiian language the entire program. Sometimes, I’ll have interviews.
MTB: And we’ll link that in the show notes, for sure.
N. Haʻalilio Solomon: Thank you. Yeah. Our college radio station, KTUH, has been amazing in, first of all, just being so open to multilingual programming, but also Hawaiian language programming. They’ve always made sure that the Hawaiian language, Hawaiian music show, has been sort of our prime slot of the week and facilitated that programming, but I don’t know. It’s kind of a funny… Do you ever feel like, “Oh, it is revitalization,” so at what point are you able to call yourself one?
MTB: Do you feel like… Do you think of yourself as an activist for the language, or is that also kind of too strong of a word?
N. Haʻalilio Solomon: Absolutely. That’s a word I’m comfortable applying to myself, a language activist, I think because for the case of ʻōlelo Hawaiʻi, we have such, we’re blessed, and I’m so grateful that we have the documentation, oral and textual, that we do have for Hawaiian language, and if you’re an activist like me for the language or if you’re an academic, or if you’re just a language nerd, language enthusiast, then you can go and play in these archives all day. And they’re open source, and they’re free, and they’re right there at our fingertips. And I have to remind myself there are so many other revitalization programs that don’t have that same documentation, that same extent of documentation.
MTB: Yeah. I mean, most don’t, right? Like most languages don’t have a good documentation or a good corpus besides maybe some scant dictionary or something that some missionary made. It’s the case for most… It’s the case for the language I work with. There’s just not a lot of documentation. Can you talk more about that, about the corpus?
N. Haʻalilio Solomon: Yeah. So the textual corpus is mainly… I guess the core of it is comprised of Hawaiian language newspapers that began being published in 1834 and run well into the 1970s. Oh, I should know this date, but might even be 1980s, but of course, the more time passed, the more language shift happened, the more bilingual the newspapers became and then the more Hawaiian language faded out of them, but there are a few estimates. If we took all of the articles that are printed in Hawaiian language in these newspapers and transfer them to like 12-point font onto 8 ½” x 11″ sheets of papers, we’d have over a million pages. Some people even say 1.5 million. We’re so fortunate to have that, and it’s a beautiful corpus. There are Moʻokūʻauhau genealogy chants. There are origin chants. There are Hawaiian stories. There are stories translated from Hebrew and Chinese, and Cinderella’s translated, and the Arabian Nights is translated in the newspapers, like several times. And then there’s the daily news, and then there’s news from other newspapers that they get that were set to Hawaiian, and they’re re- — they’re translated into Hawaiian and printed. I mean, there is so much. The scope of the content is so impressive, and we’re just really, really fortunate. And that’s just the textual.
And then the oral documentation begins in probably the ‘50s, Mrs. Pukui, Mary Kawena Pukui, was such a visionary being able to foresee that one day, revitalizationists, whether they kind of predicted or not, they’ll probably greatly benefit from… She was the one who wrote the dictionary, but alongside that work, she was also going to all the islands and speaking with people, and interviewing them, and recording them, and documenting stories that were relevant to just that very localized area where they were born and raised. She was doing all sorts of documentation — linguistic, and cultural, and all kinds of Hawaiian epistemologies, and…
So she really started and then in the 1970s is known as the Hawaiian Renaissance for spurring a cultural renaissance. And then shortly after, in the ‘80s, or even in the ‘70s too, there was a radio program called Ka Leo Hawaiʻi, which was hosted most of the time by Larry Kimura, who is such a great resource nowadays. Larry Kimura is kind of the… He used to be the father of the Hawaiian language revitalization movement. Now he’s considered the grandfather. I mean, he is pretty synonymous with revitalization. And this kind of goes back to our earlier point, because he was really the one that was interviewing all those Kupuna who were native speakers in the ‘70s, ‘80s, up until the ‘90s, and even still today there are some around that I’m sure he’s still interviewing, but it’s because of him that we have 400, 500+ hours of native speech recorded that’s also all been made into open source. That’s kind of why it’s hard for someone like me, who came into the game pretty late, to speak at length about my efforts to revitalize, or — I mean, because the documentation has been so thorough. There are many ways we can revitalize it still, but it’s a pretty large, it’s a pretty widespread movement, so me just teaching it, I guess, is contributing to the revitalization, and then the small side projects — my radio show, the animation story that Dannii and I did. There’s a monthly newsletter that she and I also did 12 issues of kind of… What were they? They wanted bite-sized language lessons that you can cut out from the newsletter and stick it on your refrigerator, so we did that.
MTB: And your interpretation.
N. Haʻalilio Solomon: Yeah. I’m also an interpreter and a translator, which is a totally different kind of political game, too. It’s a very valid question to ask. If you’re translating, isn’t that eventually going to disincentivize people from learning the language because they can just access all of those beautiful stories, those materials, those deeds, those house titles, whatever a document, whatever is being translated, into English most of the time, at least for the non-profit that I work for? What if, sort of, if you’re leaving no stone unturned, in 50 years, there’s going to be so much bilingual material. Some things should stay just in Hawaiian because it’s so much more beautiful and it also keeps this sort of incentive for people to learn Hawaiian. If you want to read the Hiʻiaka-i-ka-poli-o-Pele story, you should read it in Hawaiian. So that’s a double-edged sword that I wasn’t sure I realized when I accepted this position as translator. It’s interesting.
MTB: That’s such an interesting perspective. I had never thought of it like that, that by translating means… I mean, I think of translating as, “Oh, we’re increasing accessibility,” like you’re making it accessible in both languages and that’s a good thing, and also getting like the Hawaiian version out there simultaneously, but yeah, this idea that if people can get it in English, why would they bother trying to read it in Hawaiian, is…. Wow. That’s a really interesting…
N. Haʻalilio Solomon: Yeah.
MTB: … idea.
N. Haʻalilio Solomon: I had never really thought of it that way either until… Yeah, it makes total sense. Another one of my kumu (mentors) is Kahikina de Silva, and she said, “I’m not against translation, but it should just be… Translation is only temporary. It’s like an aid that we can use for now, but as soon as we revitalize, and reclaim, and restore our language across its fullest range of functions, as soon as we have our sovereignty back, as soon as we have a critical mass that speaks it with a certain level of fluency, we will no longer need that. And that — really, isn’t that the ultimate goal?” And I just was like, okay, jaw off the floor, “That’s exactly right,” and it was exactly what I needed to hear at the time (this was probably about three years ago now), because my career was literally going in this direction of translation — which is not a bad thing, but that totally pulled me back toward the revitalization trajectory of it that I didn’t even realize I had kind of veered off course. There’s no… I’m not knocking translation, but there are some — and even in the non-profit that I work with, this is a recurring conversation we have — we probably should leave certain things only in Hawaiian because it probably would not be appropriate to translate.
N. Haʻalilio Solomon: Yeah.
MTB: Can you share about how your experience has been as a Hawaiian person researching the Hawaiian language?
N. Haʻalilio Solomon: Yeah. I think it goes back to the idea that the movement has never been race-based. I have heard some sentiments and notions that imply that knowledge is genetic, which is something that my mentor, who’s not Hawaiian, actually said. I don’t think knowledge is genetic. And then there are some people that really believe in ancestral DNA, and I’ve felt ancestral DNA before, so I guess I would consider myself a believer of ancestral DNA, but at the same time, someone who’s not Hawaiian doing research on Hawaiian language is just essentially handling data, which is a safe place for them to be, and a safe boundary for them to be mindful of, and a safe place for them to work from. But sometimes, it’s hard for… I wouldn’t ever reduce Hawaiian language just to data. This conversation happened when we were talking about, how should non-Hawaiian researchers navigate their work and the fields that they, the circles that they work in, without being Hawaiian? Like I said, that’s kind of a safe way for them to kind of guarantee that they’re not appropriating anything or misappropriating anything, any knowledge, or any kuleana, responsibility, privilege, birthright, that they’re saying, “I’m just kind of handling… I’m bringing forth data.” And that’s really sort of the kind of science part of it, the data part of it, but I think revitalization or teaching goes way beyond the data part of it. And so yeah, I think being Hawaiian probably helps that, but that’s not to say it doesn’t ever get a little bit tense, “Am I Hawaiian enough?” Even though the revitalization movement for Hawaiian language has never been race-based, at least not to the ʻAha Pūnana Leo and immersion schools in the DOE and the universities, I think there are certain times when race plays a big part in kind of reviving, reclaiming the bigger picture of what it means to be Hawaiian. Yeah. And that’s a touchy subject for most people, for a lot of people.
MTB: Yeah. Yeah. Yeah, for sure. I mean, because I’m one of those people. Right? I work with a community who’s not my own community, so I’m essentially the steward of data, and I think you do have to think critically, and tread carefully, and make sure that every move you make is with the consent — and not only consent, but like aligned with the goals of what the community also wants.
N. Haʻalilio Solomon: Right. Yeah. There’s also a lot of non-Hawaiian researchers that are interested in Hawaiian language that kind of make that blunder all the time. They make that mistake all the time of just imposing or assuming that they know what’s best for the community.
MTB: Yeah. You know, the person with the Ph.D is not the expert. The community are the experts.
N. Haʻalilio Solomon: Mm-hmm. Mm-hmm.
MTB: It’s like it shouldn’t be so radical, but…
N. Haʻalilio Solomon: I think that’s a really important guideline. You’re not the… You know how to set up a microphone and you know what polysynthesis is, but the speakers, the community members, they’re the experts, and it’s hard to undo or kind of reverse that trope, that paradigm that’s been in place for 300 years, longer in… In other fields, it’s kind of been that way for even longer, and it kind of still is.
MTB: Yeah. Do you have any advice for aspiring researchers who want to break into linguistics, specifically Hawaiian aspiring linguists?
N. Haʻalilio Solomon: I think we talked about before, I see so many opportunities for analysis on our language that there’s a clear desire by a lot of people to learn Hawaiian. A lot of people want to learn Hawaiian language themselves. A lot of people want to send their children to immersion schools, and then the kids end up sending their kids when they’re old enough to have their own children. That cycle repeats, and that’s a beautiful thing, and so I think there’s no doubt that we love our language, so I’m all for deepening our understanding of it in… not to say “whatever way possible”, but I think linguistics is one way we can really critically and crucially understand it from different perspectives on a much deeper level and really push ourselves to uptake this movement and maybe kind of reinvigorate the movement, in a way. So, the last cultural renaissance was in the ‘70s, began in the ‘70s, and these things are usually cyclical. Right? Revolutions happen, and I don’t know too much about the psychology behind, or the study behind, revolutions, or renaissances, or renewals, but they happen every… They pattern. Right? So, I think a lot of people have had this idea floating around here we’re due for another renaissance. I think Mauna Kea really mobilized a lot of people, Hawaiian and not, speakers and not, practitioners and not, or a lot of people rally behind that, so they kind of saw that as a sort of a ground breaker for the second renaissance. And people have said, I think, that the second renaissance is going to be a lot more focused on the language itself in over 45 years into some really ground-breaking, very significant, very successful forward progress, and what does the next 50 years for us look like? So I would just recommend anyone, even interested, mildly interested, remotely interested in linguistics, and you have a love for ʻōlelo Hawaiʻi, that those two can really be mutually beneficial. Linguistics has provided me with a skill set that I really wouldn’t have otherwise that I can go into and use in classrooms, in pedagogy design. I probably wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for linguistics. So I think it’s an awesome field, and we’re talking about earlier how it’s taken a turn, it took a turn a long time ago to really prioritize the community itself. It’s beyond even just community-oriented. It’s like community member lead it. Right? So it’s a great time for both disciplines, I think.
MTB: Yeah. Yeah, that’s so cool. Well, thank you, Haʻa. This was so nice. Can you tell us where our listeners can learn more about your work and find things that you’re doing online?
N. Haʻalilio Solomon: Yeah. I have a website that I’ll give you, and if you don’t mind linking it in to this podcast.
MTB: I will. Yeah.
N. Haʻalilio Solomon: Also, the…
MTB: For sure.
N. Haʻalilio Solomon: My radio show, and also all of those lessons that we… Well, I think my website should, if it’s updated, and if it’s not, I will update it, will take you to it, all those things we talked about, the lessons, the animated story. So that’s my website, and thank you for including it.
MTB: Yeah, definitely. Yeah, thank you so much.
N. Haʻalilio Solomon: Mahalo iā ʻoe, Martha. Thank you for having me.
You’ve been listening to Field Notes, a podcast about linguistic fieldwork. This podcast is hosted and produced by Martha Tsutsui Billins with production help from Laura Tsutsui. Our music is by Lobo Loco, and our logo is by E.Vill Designs. If you have a question or a fieldwork experience to share, you can email us at email@example.com. You can also follow us on Twitter and Instagram @lingfieldnotes. If you’ve enjoyed this episode, please leave us an Apple Podcast review. Thanks for listening!