18 June 2012

Of Buckets and Sauce, Poopies and Sweet Peas: A Language All Our Own

Today, I was mentioning to a good friend how I like to call Pippet all kinds of weird names (I found out that I'm not alone in this--she is just as guilty!).  Some of my more popular ones are "Smoochie-Moochie", "Skunky-Monkey", "Scooby-Dooby", and the most recent one, once "Shmoopie-Poopie" but now whittled down to just plain ol' "Poopie".  Jay especially hates this last one and makes fun of me whenever he hears me say it.  And now the term "Poopie" seems to have expanded to both of our dogs.  Last night, as I was heading upstairs to read, I asked Jay to let both of the "Poopies" out before he went to bed.  With what I can only describe as a frowning smirk (is there such a thing?) and uncontrollable eye-rolling he told me he would if I restated the question without using the awful-pet-name-from-hell. 

Why this name is so annoying when all of the other crazy names we use in this house are not, I cannot understand.  And our household obviously has some issues with proper nomenclature.  Our son's name is Alex.  We call him everything but:  "Albert", "Alvin", "Al", and even sometimes "Dennis", a name his friends insist on calling him (there's some long story that goes along with it that I still don't understand) and has even filtered down to his teachers and coaches.  Odd.   And our poor daughter has somehow become the target of food names from me:  Cookie, Sweet Pea, Sweet Potato.  At least some of them are healthy foods and not things like "Muffin Top" or "Twinkie."

Then there is Jay and his very own dictionary.  It consists of just a few words that he uses for everything.  It's kind of like how the Hawaiian language uses only certain letters.  Jay's vocabulary is likewise streamlined.   A "bucket" can mean anything from the water glass he is drinking from, to the gas can he uses for the lawn mower fuel, to the mailbox.  "Sauce" can mean salad dressing, water in his "bucket", or ceiling paint.  Living with him for 21 years has given me ample time to decode what he says with almost an ESP-like ability.  Once you get used to it, it's kind of like playing Wheel of Fortune.  Lots of rational figuring out and some guessing thrown in for good measure.
Hey--who drank all the sauce that was in this bucket?!
Writing this all out makes "Poopie" seem not so bad.  You know it's going to be one of those hard habits to break, just like the early 80's version of Chicago so cheesily sang about.  I just told Pippet to "be a nice Poopie."  If it bothers Jay too much he can always pour himself a bucket of strong "sauce" and tune me out, if not only for a little while! 

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