Sometimes, The Wheel is on Fire

Sometimes, The Wheel is on Fire

Monday, January 14, 2013

The Professor's Alphabet

The Professor turned 18 months old last week, and somehow he just keeps getting cuter.1

One of his favorite things2 is animal sounds. He knows all the standards, and then some.3 What I find interesting, however, is he identifies some animals by either name or sound (e.g. puppy, kitty, piggy, ducky, bear, owl, frog) but others only by their sound (e.g. moo, baa, neigh). He'll roar when asked about lions, tigers, and bears, but he makes a different sound for dinosaur every time I ask.4

Likewise, he's not consistent with his numbers. When he first started repeating them after us, he would say "two" after 1 and 3, but repeat the rest of the numbers as expected. He's since consolidated to solely "two" (for 1-3), "bive" (4-5), and "nine" (6-9). Unless he's subtly trying to get me to invest for his future in a 529 plan, I'm not sure what this means.

And then there's the alphabet. For this, I shall use a chart:

ABCDEFGHIJK
ABAr! Ar!5DF(silence)6Gnine7IJMeow!

After K/itty, he's completely unoriginal, although he sometimes points at himself for U and gives up entirely at W.

But enough talk. You came here for pictures. And I shall not disappoint.






1 I might be biased, but I know it's true because I've gotten independent verification from multiple external sources. For I am a scientist. By which I mean I once watched Nova.
2 Apart from shrieking so the cats flee, and eating fruit and cheese and crackers and tomatoes (which are technically fruit but you shut up) and bread and peas and holy hell we're out of food again. Son of a—
3 Including crow, donkey, monkey, and moose ("Hey Rocky, watch me pull a rabbit out of my hat!")
4 Which, I suppose, isn't wrong, since I never specify which dinosaur, and we're rather short on eye witnesses from the Triassic period.
5 This is what I get for branching off to non-standard animals. Even though he's fully aware C is for Cookie — that the only song he's wanted to hear the past two weeks — for him the alphabet starts A-B-Seal.
6 He's already said F, so why should he say it again? F that.
7 He sometimes does say H, but H times out of 9 he doesn't.

30 comments:

  1. Well he is on track with K, even if it's wrong.
    And he looks a little scare of that toy in the last shot.

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    1. He's not wrong. It's his alphabet.

      And he's not scared of the toy. He's scared of what the truck represents: conformity. (Or maybe it represents the horrifying result of a dinosaur/truck marriage.)

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  2. My favorite (true) toddler story to share, a friend's daughter was learning her animals and their sounds.

    What does a duck say? Quack!

    What does a cow say? Mooo!

    What does a dragon say? Roar!

    What does a house say? Get out!

    If I had been drinking, it would have come out my nose. I laughed so hard.

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    1. I'm looking forward to those moments. (For reference, I'm referring to both my son catching us off-guard like that, and Selby spit-takes.)

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  3. So he's taking more of a Pirahã approach to counting?

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    1. As a matter of fact... (pauses to go look up Pirahã) ...no. Not exactly. And I'm pretty sure he does it more for our laughter than because he only distinguishes between some and many.

      But still, ooh. I learned something today. Thanks!

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  4. This post was so frickin hilarious and full of adorableness. Bravo, good sir!

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    1. Why thank you, Sarah. But in truth, he's just a hilarious, adorable kid, so this post practically wrote itself.

      (No, that's not true. Blog posts don't write themselves. Guns do.)

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  5. You have the kid of a thousand expressions...and sounds, apparently. I would go with the 529 plan. Cute kid Nate!

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    1. You're right, Chuck. If we open a 529 plan for him, one day we'll be able to send him to college to learn all the other numbers and letters. And thanks!

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  6. Wonderful expressions - both in the photos and in words, and sounds! I love how you've mapped out his alphabet!

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    1. And for my next trick, I shall map out his alphabet geographically. Unfortunately, I have no idea how I'll do this, but I figure my brain is skewed enough I should be able to figure it out.

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    1. First of all, what do you mean, "you people"?

      And secondly, what the hell? "Crotch fruit"? Seriously? For the last time, I don't have melon balls.

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    4. Yeah, that's what I thought. And here I'd hoped my son wouldn't have to endure any insulting or horrible nicknames until at least first grade. So much for that.

      Call me whatever you want -- a damn breeder, an Elmo enabler, a whiny little wisp of a man -- but please, leave my son out of it. At least till he's older and does something to deserve such a sentiment. Once he pisses me off and I start calling him names, he's fair game.

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    6. By the way, you didn't have to delete your comments. I may be overly sensitive to certain things (such as things pertaining to my son, or tear-jerker moments in movies), but that doesn't mean you can't share your opinion. There are plenty of single folk (as well as some parents, I imagine) who would be completely on board with your point of view.

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    7. I was joking, but apparently that didn't come off. I'm not trying to offend anyone, so I'll just stay out. Thanks!

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  8. Oh, he is VERY CUTE and I love your footnoted entry! I'm particularly fond of 'watch me pull a rabbit out of my hat' *snort* But kids and language are so interesting. My daughter was fabulous because you could totally see how her little brain was processing.

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    1. Yeah, that'd be nice. But my brain can't quite process how his brain processes. Only afterward, when I have a chance to ponder his logic, do I begin to understand.

      Then again, I have yet to meet anyone who can follow the inner workings of my mind, so this is likely karma.

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  9. Every age of a child is magical, but this age is especially so. He definitely seems to have loads of character and I can't imagine where that came from. :) I love the alphabet chart, that should really be a new language. Pretty clever. Perhaps he is higher intelligence and that is a sort of code...
    He has grown a lot since I last saw pics, I suppose that happens. I guess I should visit more. :D

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    1. He has plenty of character, alright, but I'm only partially to blame. There's also my wife, our three pets, and the entire cast of Sesame Street.

      Oh, and considering I'd only posted one other picture here since his 1st birthday, he's grown a lot since anyone last saw pics. In other words... It's not you, it's me.

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    2. That's a lot of character, all in one house...Sesame Street is the bomb diggity. It's been about 14 years since I last watched it, but I still remember most of the songs. Bats In The Belfry...an excellent song. I must admit, Sesame Street from my childhood was the best though, there was a lot of grooviness going on back then.

      Good to know! I was feeling a wee bit guilty. :)

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    3. Grooviness and Groverness. My mom burned CDs of all our old records, so The Professor gets to enjoy the very same songs I did as a kid. Plus a bunch of Elmo ones, but hey, there are worse things out there. *cough cough* Teletubbies *cough cough*

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  10. Must love the Professor, he is SO cute. And your footnote is absolutely accurate - we *don't* know what dinosaur sounded like, do we? For all we know, when T Rex opened that big scary mouth out came a sound like a cat hacking up a hairball. This caused the other dinosaurs to fall to the ground, laughing, and then he could grab them with those pitiful little arms.

    I am SO glad you are teaching him about Bullwinkle - a truly Renaissance education.

    All the pics are cute, but "out!" is my favorite.

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    1. After reading your comment, I fell to the ground, laughing. Luckily, the T-rex was in the other room, and couldn't get his little arms to reach the doorknob.

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  11. After all is said and done, the little guy is adorable.

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    1. Thanks, Anthony. Of course, I like to think he's adorable before all is said and done, too. But I might be somewhat biased.

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