Big Talk

My niece is a walking, talking two year old thing who has a lot to say, a good portion of it isn't even part of any language. I wonder if she thinks that anything is a word if you simply say it, not understanding most words that are said, her idea of our language must seem as foreign and spontaneous as hers is to us. She is probably of the impression that talking doesn't need to be done with actual words, if you have some recognizable words and the right tone and expression, then you'll be able to communicate and what's more important, understood.

My niece recognizes the tone of a question, the high ending pitch of inquiry. She'll usually answer with a yes or no, she'll even dress it up with an "uhmm..." before answering. She learns new words and expressions every week, both english and spanish. She sings the alphabet song, of course its her own arrangement where a,b,c and l,m,n,o,p are her favorite parts and appear more than once in the song, especially l,m,n,o,p but who can blame her when its the best part of the alphabet song, period. Sometimes she'll mix Twinkle Twinkle Little Star into the alphabet song, seamlessly, might I add. London Bridge is Falling Down and Itsy Bitsy Spider are also part of her repertoire, yet less frequent.

She doesn't like to be disagreed with or argued. If she tells you she's a "bad boy" don't contest. If she tells you she's "five" because its her favorite number or "purple" similarly, because its her favorite color, just let it be. Otherwise, you're looking for trouble. I must admit that I usually am looking for trouble. I truly do enjoy our bickering. I most likely have the mind of a two year old anyway, so its not as if its unfair or anything like that. And boy could that little girl howl, I mean she really lets me have it. At times when she mimes the removal of my ears for a snack, for instance, nothing upsets her more than my snatching of my ears back from her and throwing the imaginary piece of cartilage across the room. Of course, no matter how much we fight, a dance and some cartoons later, we're back to cool-day-la.

Whenever I hear her pass by, mouthing off one of her toddler jargon monologues, I smile. And she is definitely on to something because I truly do understand 90% of the long sentences she formulates, regardless if they're composed of just a few "real" words and the remainder being filler. The feeling is expressed successfully. Isn't that the real point of communication?

(this is not my niece but I bet

she's just as crazy)

No comments: