I have a little pet peeve. I do not like hearing grown men baby talk.
I don’t really speak baby talk. I didn’t even speak “baby talk” to my babies after a certain point. When they were old enough to grasp the concept of phonetics then “blanky” became blanket.
No “potty”, no “nitey nite” no “boo-boo’s”…well maybe one “boo-boo.” Reflect. Review. Nope ~ no “boo-boo’s.”
I’m not a “baby talk” racist. Some of my best friends are “baby talkers”. But I’m more of a “call it what it is” type of woman.
I can deal barely with words like “doggie” grant it I would rather hear “puppy” because to me a full-grown puppy is a DOG. Ahhh who am I fooling ~ I cringe inside when I hear a grown person speak to me as if they were speaking to a two-year old.
Dumbing down words irritates me.
Maybe it’s because I learned to read when I was very young. I fell in love with reading and vocabulary – hell my mantra is “language is a code, use it or be used by it” so what would make anyone believe I could simply overlook a constant stream of baby talk directed at me?
It’s not sexy.
Yes I check myself. I am not perfect with my vocabulary. But more often than not, within the confines of an adult conversation, I refer to words in the adult definitions they were assigned. Such as “my mom or my dad” vs. my “mommy and daddy.” I make mistakes. Once I used the word “penchant” when I should have said “proclivity” and oh boy did my better half jump on that mistake like a pit-bull on a bone. And for some reason I always say “point in case” instead of “case in point” most probably because I never had a clear understanding of that phrase.
Its case in point, the modern meaning is of some instance or example that illustrates what is being discussed. The phrase is now a fossil, because it was once possible to say in point by itself, meaning something appropriate, relevant or pertinent, but it survives only in phrases like this one.
It derives from the French à point, meaning the same as à propos, something relevant or to the point. The first example of the English form seems to be this from 1658: “Some play or other is in point”. It was beginning to look old fashioned by the time this next was published in 1888: “I recall another humble incident somewhat in point”. There’s also the related in point of, with reference to. You might once have said, as a writer did in 1681: Sweden remains in point of Constitution and Property exactly as it did anciently”. Another example comes from Charles Dickens’ The Old Curiosity Shop of 1840: “His friend appeared to be rather ‘cranky’ in point of temper”
We can still use in point of fact, another fossil form based on this same phrase. Here’s an example cited in the Oxford English Dictionary from 1769 that shows how the modern set phrase case in point may have come about: “Some case or cases, strictly in point, must be produced”.
There. Now I will more than likely never jack-up that phrase again. This is who I am. I love to learn words and if I don’t know something I don’t pretend to know it. The moment I discover I am incorrect I take the necessary steps to “get corrected.”
I just never understood how we are teaching our children to speak by saying things like “goo goo gaga” or speaking words in a “cutesy” way. Our children are learning from everything we do, especially the way we talk.
And yes…yes…yesssssss of course I believe children need to be children, but they also need to learn. As parents, it is our job to teach them everything they need to know to succeed in the world. If they hear words incorrectly on a continual basis, they will inevitably speak them wrong.
Well that takes care of why I don’t like baby talking to babies. What about baby talking to me? A grown woman? Or to be blunt, What IS that? An adult man who believes it’s cute to speak baby talk? For starters, I am a SPOKEN WORD ARTIST ~ which means I have a healthy, unshakable respect for LANGUAGE. I am a BOOK WORM ~ which means I read words A LOT; I absorb words within my pores.
I don’t want my pores filled with crazy baby talk that makes me question your manhood and level of maturity.
I am a WRITER. A POET. A SPEAKER. A PERFORMER. But more importantly I am a PARENT. I don’t profess to be a big brain nor do I haphazardly throw around $50 words BUT everything I do involves communication. My life revolves around the ability to effectively communicate. You can’t effectively communicate with me via baby talk; it is insulting to my intelligence. It is an assault on my intelligence. If you are addressing me with baby talk, how am I supposed to look at you as a grown up?
How could I possibly take you seriously? I can’t. I won’t. I don’t.
I’m a simple woman; and while it is a wondrous thing to hear babies initially learn to speak. Those moments should be preserved in your memory bank to draw interest from for an eternity; please allow those memories to nestle in your heart, not in your mouth.