> Like the name of the community house at Ngerekabesang: "Buttressed."
At Ngerekabesang in Koror (central Palau) there is a community house (bai) called Telkakl, which means "to buttress" or "to be buttressed." Some of the older bai in Palau were thus supported with beams from the ground to the eaves, and the implication has been added that a bai so supported must be very full of important possessions. This idiom is used of a person who is wealthy, or of one's self, meaning that one has cash on hand.
> Eating like laib-while eating, burying.
The laib, a bird with a long, white tail, according to lore eats ripe fruit in season, as other birds do, but also gathers scraps dropped by other birds and buries them. When other birds are hungry, the laib will dig up the scraps and eat them. Hence, one should plan ahead for lean times.
> Like one who has eaten the thorny puffer fish, full of many things.
The thorny puffer fish is sometimes gulped by the wide-mouthed grouper fish. The puffer, expanding and extending its thorns in the grouper's mouth, renders the latter rather "full of things" and completely helpless. Groupers in this predicament are occasionally caught by fishermen. The idiom is applied to anyone who faces more problems, more work, or more sweethearts than he can cope with.
> He's like the chambered nautilus whose shell is very fragile.
When provoked, he gets easily irritated or angered. The Palauan believes that the chambered nautilus lives in the sea at great depth and, at the slightest touch against a rock, its shell is broken and it drifts to the surface where it dies. The saying may be applied to a poor sport, one who angers easily or who reacts badly when the victim of a prank.
> It's like when the men of Ngesias clamored over what they had lost (after a party of raiders had attacked without warning and taken a head as a trophy).
The men of the Ngesias (Peleliu) village club were sitting near their clubhouse one evening when raiders broke through the brush, shouted wildly, and excaped with the head of one of them. When they recovered their senses, the men jumped to their spears and shouted threats into the darkness of the surrounding brush. Aroused by the commotion, the village chief appeared and ,when appraised of the situation, admonished them to be quiet since the fuss would gain nothing. "Don't cry over spilt milk."