Thursday, May 2, 2013

What is that you're eating?

Interpreting the mispronunciations of little kids' words is a source of comedy as a parent. I wish I had written more of them down; there were so many quirky little pronunciations of everyday words when Caroline and John were toddlers, some of which persist in our conversations. I can't tell you how many times I've intentionally said, "I don't fink so!" in response to a request for something outrageous.

Food, naturally, is a core part of early vocabulary, and it follows that food was frequently mispronounced:
  • Mik = milk
  • Chicky = chicken
  • Paba = pasta
  • Hoot layers = eclairs (technically that was just a year ago, but hoot layers? seriously?)
To this day, my sister, parents and I still occasionally call Coke "guldee gull" because that's how my little brother pronounced it when he was a toddler. (Why this was one of his first words should be an indicator of how much my family loves Coke. And I mean COKE, not Pepsi. Please.)

Now that the kids are older, there aren't that many mispronunciations or funny articulations any more. This past weekend, though, I was down in Houston for my sister's baby shower, and my dad and brother-in-law decided to cook out of the Julia Child cookbook for Saturday night dinner. While they were finishing up, I made a quick call home to talk to the kids. Food is a pretty a standard topic of conversation, and I asked them what they had for dinner. Caroline told me they had hot dogs and beans - a favorite - and I exulted with her over their delicious dinner.

When she asked me what I was having for dinner, I told her, beef bourguignon, and it's going to be delicious!

Pause. Silence on the other end of the line.

Caroline: "Of course it's going to be delicious, Mommy! It has Yum in the name!"

And that, my friends, is why beef bourguignon will now and forever be known as beef bourguignYUM in the May and Coussoule families.

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