Posted by: Paul | February 10, 2010

Spelling It Out

More and more we find we’re having to avoid using certain words.

Adam is at the stage now where his speech is developing rapidly. He’s listening, copying, and in some cases understanding what is being said to him, about him and around him. So not only do we have to be careful about the obvious things – swearing, politeness and so on – but there are trigger words that we have to ration, and only use either when we need to, or are prepared for the consequences.

Things like biscuit, cake, lolly, dummy are among the items you’d expect. But Adam has some odd ones too – like Hoover. Yes, Hoover. He loves it. Can’t get enough of the domestic chores for some reason. Washing is another one. He seems to really enjoy putting washing in the machine and taking it out when it’s done. Of course, you can guarantee that by the time he’s old enough to do it without dumping clean washing all over the garage floor, I’ll have to bribe him in some way.

So if we want to avoid some sort of altercation caused by saying “Hoover” when we don’t actually intend to do the vacuuming, we have to spell it to each other, along with dummy, dinner and so on. This can turn what would otherwise have been a short conversation into a lengthy exchange:

“What time are you going to give him his d-i-n-n-e-r?”
“After I’ve done the h-o-o-v-e-r-i-n-g.”
“Where’s his d-u-m-m-y?”
“In my p-o-c-k-e-t oh never mind.”

Right now he’s supposed to be having an n-a-p. But he is refusing. I’ve no idea when I’m going to be able to eat my d-o-n-u-t.


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