The Importance of Being Verbal
Me: Mini, how about we go upstairs and change your diaper?
Me: Dude, we’ve got to go change that diaper. You’re stinking up the joint.
Mini: No Mama, want play choo.
Me: You want to play with your trains? Did you just say that?
Mini: YEAH, MOMMA, want play choo.
Me: Wait, when did you learn to talk?
Mini: [points at book] Whassthis?
Me: Those are cows.
Me: Cow. Cows say, ‘Mooo!’
Mini: Yah, Tao!
Me: Say Cow.
Mini: YAH MOMMA, TAO!!
Me: We can rock in the chair for a few more minutes, but it’s almost sleepy time. OK, bud?
Me: What about a cow?
Mini: YAH, TAO!
Me: You want to hear a story about a cow?
Mini: Yesh. TAO.
Me: OK, once upon a time there was a little boy cow and he lived with his mama cow and his daddy cow–
Me:–and that baby cow loved choos very much. Every day, he would walk down to the train station to see the choos–
Me:–which just so happened to be engineered by a giant RAWR. And the RAWR who drove the train would always wave to the little boy cow as he drove by, and the little boy would say, “Bye, bye, choo-RAWR, bye bye!”
Mini: Bye-bye! Buh-bye choo!
Me: That’s right, he’d say, ‘Bye-bye’ to the choo. And then–
Me: OK, if you lie down, then Daddy will come in and tell you about meows.
Me: Good morning, sunshine!
Mini: eslalales MAMMA! [pointing at TV screen]
Me: Eh, maybe. She’s a little young to be a mamma, buddy.
Mini: es MAMAMA!
Me: Do you mean she’s a girl?
Mini: esun Mamma!
Me: OK, I guess.
Me: Mas what? Mas strawberries?
Mini: No, MAS BALL.
Me: What do you mean ‘Mas ball’? Your ball is over there–do you want it?
Mini: No, MAS BALL [holds up grape]
Me: That’s not a ball, but it looks like a ball.
Mini: NO, BALL!
Me: It looks like a ball. You want mas grapes?
Mini: MAS BALL.
Me: I maintain that they’re not balls. They’re grapes.
Mini: nononono MAS BALL! MAS BALL!
Me: OK, fine, you’re the boss. Mas BALL it is.