Adventures in Language Acquisition

When my second son was around 2, we were in a serious Toy Story phase at my house.

(Side note: Toy Story, Blue's Clues, and many other kiddie-favs fall into the funny category of "things-I-stuck-my-nose-up-at-before-I-had-kids." When my first child was born, TV and movies represented ALL THINGS EVIL and we didn't let him watch much of anything at all. Not having any reason myself to see kid movies or watch kid shows, I thought they were all (a) stupid, (b) damaging to healthy child development, and (c) worthy of suspicion based merely on their popularity. My, how far I have come. I remember asking a friend "So what is this Blue's Clues thing?" How hilarious that I was suspicious of one of the quietest, sweetest shows on television! And I remember another friend telling me how she loved watching Toy Story with her nephews, and again, I was suspicious. Must be tripe, I thought. Until I reluctantly let the boys watch it, expecting to hate it, and discovered just how awesome it is. Loved the second one even more. Live and learn, I tell ya'.)

Anyway, we had all the Toy Story figures: Woody, Buzz, Hammy, Potato Head, Rex, Slinky Dog, Wheezy, Sarge, Lenny etc. Yes, we even had Lenny. The boys spent hours playing with these and repeating long passages of dialogue.

My two-year old was pretty much just learning to speak, so his turn at the dialogue was sometimes hard to decipher. Fans of the movie will remember that Potato Head calls one of the other characters "You Hockey Puck!" (because he's actually talking to a hockey puck). Driving around town one day, my boys were channeling this part of the movie, with Cenzo (2-year old) playing the part of Potato Head. It took me awhile to figure out what he was trying to say: I was too busy trying to get my brain around the fact that he kept saying to his brother: "You fucky pot!"

This was so priceless that I didn't correct him. I just let him keep right on shouting this out, which he did for weeks. My favorite was being in the grocery store with my two beautiful boys, each with a Toy Story action figure in hand, with the little one shouting YOU FUCKY POT at his big brother. Got a few strange looks, I did.

This remains one of the most delightful memories of my early mommy days: I smile and giggle whenever I think of it. Sometimes, I get the urge to yell at a bad driver or some other rude person YOU FUCKY POT. Wouldn't that be fun?

What linguistic gems have your kids stumbled upon?



Viv said…

I actually use the word in my profile's "About Me" section. For some strange reason my 11 year old started saying suckish. I told him that it was NOT appropriate and to stop saying it. My son responded with, "why, it isn't a bad word, because it isn't really a word at all?"

So I banned him from saying anything that had suck in it. After about a week of hearing him work suck into normal conversation just to stop short and point at me and say, "um, you know, that word. My Mom gets really mad if I say it."

You can imagine, your neighbor's kid says to his little brother, "Hey H, don't bite the lollipop. You should just...I am not allowed to say that word...would you please tell my brother what I mean?" While looking at you with big innocent puppy dog eyes.

So, I decided instead of banning it. I would make it my own. Nothing quite as uncool as something your Mom says, right?

One morning he was telling me that because he had to come back for something, he might miss the bus. I said, "that would be really..."

"MOM...STOP!!! I get it, okay? I'll never ever say it again. Just stop. Stop saying it. Please. I never want to hear it again, promise me you'll stop?"
Jen said…
Oh, Viv! Brilliant!

I like "fucky pot." I think that should be a new swear phrase for everyone.
I LOVE THIS! Now I know what to call irresponsible drivers. LOL

Talk about being embarrased in public by your kids. This is one of my many moments!

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