Wednesday, August 22, 2007

just listen to yourself

In grad school once, (language analysis course), we were tasked with transcribing speech of some kind or another. A conversation. To hear what we really say and how we really say it or don’t or say it again and again or say it over each other or “um” our way through it or in general, talk. It was pretty durn fascinating.

So lately, I’ve been wondering what it would sound like if you could really hear the conversations that go on in our house these days. Absent a recording device, I’ve tried to recreate one as faithfully as possible. Let’s check in with reading time. Children’s literature is fascinating, sends you places you’ve never been before…

“’N’ dat?”

“And that looks to me like a donkey dancing with a chicken.”


“I don’t know why a donkey would dance with a chicken, frankly. Couldn’t tell ya.”


“Why couldn’t I tell you?”


“Well, because I just don’t know. Seems a bit odd, don’t you think? Maybe the chicken is a really good dancer.”

“Dood dan-er?”



“Maybe he took dance lessons.”

“Dant le-uns?”

“Yeah, like maybe it was always his dream to be a dancer and he took lessons and now he’s stuck dancing with this donkey who has four left feet.”

“Wo feet?”

“Yeah, donkeys have four feet. See?”


“Why not?”

“Don-e feet?”

“Yup, the donkey has feet. Four. One, two, three, four.”

“Right dere?”

“Yup, right there.”


“Wanna count them with me?”

“Un. Ooh. Wee. … Un. Ooh!!!” (raises both arms in triumph)

“Yay… One, two, three, four. Four comes after three. Wanna try?”

“Don-e dant?”

“Yeah, the donkey dances.”


“Should we turn the page?”

“Why, Mama? Why?”

“Why should we turn the page or why does the donkey dance?”

“Um, dat, dat don-e…Um, um, dat don-e… dat don-e dant?”


(Giggles) “Dat don-e dant!” (Giggles.)

“That’s kind of a silly donkey, huh?”


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Truth is stranger than fiction, for sure. Dat don-e dant good. Jude

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