Well, nothing can save me now.
As I was sitting in the passenger seat of my sister’s vehicle, my seven year old nephew and two and a half year old niece in the back seat, the adult conversation that was taking place in the front was not under exemption of being heard by the younger ones in the back.
I thought that I was having the common decency to lower my voice to a whisper, and only speaking loud enough to where my sister could hear and I didn’t have to repeat myself.
We were having a discussion about someone, and I ended my sentence with the commentary of “What a jackass!”.
To the horror of my own hearing, and most likely my sister, in the back seat came the emulation from the two year old.
The vocal response of “quack whas” that came from my niece’s mouth put my sister and I both in shock and in a fit of hysteria. But neither one of us could figure out which way to take it.
The seven year old knew better. I was anticipating his reply to be “Bad Word! Bad Word!”, but when he heard the adults in the front start to laugh a little bit, then he decided to chime in with his own rendition of “quack whas”. But his version sounds more of an impaired version of “cracked glass” instead of “jackass”.
For the remainder of the evening, the older sibling kept pushing his luck by trying to get the younger one to say it again and again and again. But THIS UNCLE was very fortunate that she never uttered the phrase again. At least not in my presence.
But to hear my two and a half year old niece try to talk is often funny at times. My sister and I often reflect on the time back in June when we were trying to teach her the word “pine cone”, and she kept saying “pine corn”.
Just a couple of months later, she does say it correctly. So now the amusement of “pine corn” is nothing but history.
Now she has a new phrase that she stumbles to say correctly. Perhaps its just a mouthful to her at this point.
“Stop! In la la la la la”. Or to us, “Stop! In the name of the law!”.
I have pondered such implications about the unfortunate English lesson that my niece jumped in on. Of all the things to teach a child, why did it have to be that she’s got the hearing of a bat? Does it show that I do not have any children?? I think it does.
One thing is for sure, as long as its not being repeated to her at home, and as long as I am not saying it again in front of her, she’ll forget all about it soon. I cannot really stop the seven year old nephew though. I’m not sure if he’s been trying to get her to say it again and again. The boy just knows that its “wrong to say” and she is “saying it wrong”.
I knew better though. And it could have been a lot worse. I could have censored myself, instead I chose full throttle language at a greatly diminished volume and she STILL caught on!!