Notice of Disorder Quellment and Negotiated Objector Statement—Speculative Grammarian Task Force for Wanton Innovation v. Office of the Editor-in-Chief of Speculative Grammarian SpecGram Vol CXCII, No 3 Contents Mix & Match ‖‖—Max & Mitch Ninelette

An Overview of the Wai-It Language

by Zeke Gothedeer

Wai-It (called “Vibes-spicy-vibes-vibes-spicy-spicy” by its speakers) is a language spoken by a group of fishermen in Norumbega, Maine. It functions as a cryptolect that the fishermen only use amongst themselves; they communicate using grunts and head gestures whenever outsiders are present. The existence of Wai-It was revealed to the world in 1986, when a Norumbega fisherman accidentally spoke Wai-It to a visiting tourist who just happened to be dressed like a fisherman. Wai-It does not seem to be related to any other language, and it is considered an isolate.

The speakers of Wai-It are an ethnically-diverse population who only have their profession in common. It is not known where the language originally comes from, how it ended up in Norumbega, or why it became the lingua franca for this group of fishermen who presumably did not share a common language when they first arrived in America. Most of the younger fisherman in the group now speak English as a first language and have little to no knowledge of Wai-It, so Wai-It is considered critically endangered.


Wai-It has 6 consonants and 3 vowels for a total of 9 phonemes, the smallest known phoneme inventory in the world.


Stopp, bʔ
Fricativevs, z



/a/ only appears in the diphthong /ai/ and is considered an allophone of /ʌ/.


The Wai-It alphabet consists of the following letters:

B, C, E, H, I, O, P, S, U, V, Y

The orthography is fairly simple, since there are only three possible sequences:


The grammar of Wai-It is agglutinative and oligosynthetic. Each word acts as a self-contained sentence, and is made up of multiple instances of “vibes”, “uh-oh”, and “spicy” that change their meaning depending on their position in the word. Much like the Amazonian language Pirahã, Wai-It lacks the ability to embed clauses within other clauses. It also lacks adpositions, deixis, ditransitive clauses, intransitive clauses, the ability to actually describe things rather than vaguely hinting at them, and a bunch of other things that every other language has, including Pirahã.

The first segment in every word is a classifier that declares the type of word it is.

The meanings of the following segments are determined by this initial classifier.

Vibes-class words

Order 1 2 3 4 ...
Role Class Animacy No. Subjects Owner
vibes vibes-class animate one me/us**
spicy n/a spicy* many you**
uhoh n/a inanimate two them

Order 5 6 7
Role No. Owners Tense Suffix (optional)
vibes one belonged to question
spicy many belongs to emphasis
uhoh two will belong to negation

* The meaning of “spicy animacy” is not yet understood.

** Because the first-person marker starts with a labial consonant and the second-person marker starts with an alveolar consonant, Sergei Sarostin includes Wai-It in his version of the Nostratic macrofamily.

There are a total of 972 possible vibes-class words.

Spicy-class words

Order 1 2 3 ...
Role Class Subject No.
vibes n/a I/we one
spicy spicy-class you many
uhoh n/a they two

Order 4 5 6
Role Adjective Tense Suffix (optional)
vibes good was/were question
spicy spicy is/are emphasis
uhoh bad will be negation

There are a total of 324 possible spicy-class words.

Uhoh-class words

Order 1 2 3 4 5 ...
Role Class Subject No. Subjects Object No. Objects
vibes n/a I/we one me/us one
spicy n/a you many you many
uhoh uhoh-class they two them two

Order 6 7 8 9
Role Verb Tense Completion Suffix (optional)
vibes good action did complete question
spicy spicy action do repetitive emphasis
uhoh bad action will do* ongoing negation

*When used in combination with the emphatic suffix, “uhoh” in slot 7 turns the statement into an imperative.

There are a total of 8,748 possible uhoh-class words.

In total, Wai-It has 10,044 possible words.

Sample Vocabulary

Vibes-uhoh-spicy-vibes-spicy-uhoh Those things will belong to us.
Vibes-uhoh-vibes-spicy-vibes-spicy-uhoh That thing does not belong to you.
Vibes-vibes-vibes-vibes-vibes-vibes That creature belonged to me.
Vibes-vibes-vibes-vibes-vibes-vibes-vibes Did that creature belong to me?
Spicy-uhoh-spicy-vibes-spicy-uhoh Those people are not good.
Spicy-spicy-vibes-uhoh-uhoh-vibes Will you be bad?
Spicy-spicy-spicy-spicy-spicy Y’all are spicy.
Spicy-spicy-spicy-spicy-spicy-spicy Y’all are really spicy.
Uhoh-spicy-vibes-uhoh-spicy-vibes-uhoh-spicy-vibes You must do good things to those people.
Uhoh-spicy-vibes-vibes-vibes-spicy-spicy-vibes You do spicy things to me. (Often used as a pickup line)
Uhoh-uhoh-uhoh-uhoh-uhoh-uhoh-uhoh-uhoh Those two will be doing bad things to each other.
Uhoh-uhoh-uhoh-uhoh-uhoh-uhoh-uhoh-uhoh-uhoh Those two will not be doing bad things to each other.

Notice of Disorder Quellment and Negotiated Objector StatementSpeculative Grammarian Task Force for Wanton Innovation v. Office of the Editor-in-Chief of Speculative Grammarian
Mix & Match ‖‖Max & Mitch Ninelette
SpecGram Vol CXCII, No 3 Contents