Pel Specific Words

The Vaughn assistant is compiling a dictionary of Star Island words and expressions. Send us your own Star-specific words and/or maxims, with the Star Island Definition.


From Nancy Meyer:


Y.F….” I was a never-been-to-the-island-before Pel (do we have a term for people who come out to work without ever having seen the place?). I remember spending my first week (OK, I confess – sitting in the bathrooms) pondering the “Y.F.…” (as in Your Friendly Chamber Person or Your Friendly Night Crew, etc.)


Pucky – lobster shells, bodies, etc. YUCK.


We have sex!” I remember the Maintenance Crew (that year, also known as the “Bobs,” because they all got shirts made with the name “Bob” embroidered above the pocket) yelling out this phrase when ever anything went particularly well. My speculation, and this is just a guess, is that they might have sat around at one time and pondered the question, what is the best thing…


Half way: when the last piece is handed down the luggage line Pelican’s yell “Half way!”


Waitrae: food servers, meant to be a gender inclusive term.


Dave Pierson expressions: “Working hard or hardly working?”, “We started late so we better quit early.”, “Terrible!” (in answer to the question, “Howya doing Dave?”


White Knight, Black Knight: The white knights were the “Clean Crews” (waitrae, chamber, desk, bellhop, etc.). The Black Knights were the maintenance crews.


Deskie, Kitchie


From John and Leslie Lintner


As a Star-specific word or phrase, I remember, “Yes, it SHOULD,” as a response to a conclusion from some engineer or other who had said, “There, that should work now.” The tone of voice used for SHOULD in the response was heavily ironic, allowing a multitude of inflected meanings, but in particular suggesting that “should work” and factual working were not necessarily connected and that farther investigation and testing was now appropriate. I think I first became aware of this usage with Fred Mansfield and Charlie Case, but I know that it has had a long and useful and continuing history. I will add that this is really a double entry because it may also represent a change. It is a change in my impression because more things are working on the Island now that should work than was the case twenty and thirty years ago. It is probably not a change because I am sure that Pelicans continue to use the phrase and the irony and the farther testing much as we did earlier.

From Steve and Edie Whitney


Chinchilla alley-corridor between dishroom and milk machines. In days of yore, rodents similar to chinchillas were spotted here.


Not on my boat you won’t!- Anything outside the norm as construed by Capt. Arnold Whittacker.


I can haddock it!- See hack


TOBOMA= Take a bite of my ***.


Fork You!



RATS The start of the Pelican Cheer

PUCKY Stuff that is left over after a lobster is eaten

BUGJUICE Brightly colored, heavily sweetened beverages served on Star, mostly with lunch

CHANGEOVER The dreaded day when everyone works really hard

WAITRAE Gender inclusive term for food servers

DESKIE Pelicans who take your money and give you room assignments

HALFWAY What the start of the luggage line yells as the last piece is passed

KITCHIE People who prepare your food

PELICANS The mostly college-age staff of the Star Island Conference Center

PENGUINS The mostly older-than-Pelican-aged staff on Star

RICKEY Soda water, sweetened syrup and flavor

OBR Hangout spot in the underworld

HERE The Carp Shop

THERE The Paint Shop

TERRIBLE Dave Pierson’s answer to the question, “Howya doing Dave?”