Tuesday, January 20, 2009

I Don't Think He Can Pronounce Hussein, Though

I seriously did not teach him this. To the best of my knowledge, Aerie did not teach him this.

The boy says, "Ooooooooooh, Bama!" He's been saying it for months, since before the election. Sometimes he'll repeat it if we've been talking about Obama, but often he says it without context, with no Obama references in conversation or on TV. Out of nowhere, he just says, "Ooooooooooh, Bama!"

Mungo has convinced herself that she taught him to say, "Oh, bummer!" in her heavy South Boston accent. She tells people the story of us being in the car, and her saying, "Oh, bummer!" about some such or other, and him repeating it. But I was in the car. And I remember quite clearly telling her that he'd been saying "Obama," and that I wasn't sure where he picked it up. Probably from the TV (pronounced "TB" in Thumperish). And she said, "It sounds like he's saying 'Oh, bummer!'"

But it ain't "Oh, bummer." It's "Obama." I've never made a big deal about it with him. I've never pointed out Obama on TV and made him say it. As far as I knew, it was just a word he picked out of the ether without having any clue what that word signified.

Until today.

While we were waiting for our car to be serviced, he was getting restless. We played in the playroom, and he was bored with that. We'd wandered around and flirted with the staff, and he was bored with that. He was busying himself climbing into and out of and into again one of the waiting room chairs. I handed him a special inauguration insert from the local paper. I pointed to the picture on the front and asked him, "Who's that?"

"Obama!"

I'm telling you, that boy's a genius.

And that's all I have to say about the inauguration. I could say that I recorded Obama's speech, thinking that I'd show it to Thumper some day. What day, I don't know. But someday. I could talk about getting chills. And getting choked up. And wanting to think this was a new beginning, a new day. But I can't say it right. And it's all been said already. And I don't want to talk about the doubt that comes right behind the hope. So instead, I'll just say it like the boy does:

Obama!

4 comments:

meg said...

My kids might be the culprit. They talk about obama alot and I think I remember the kids saying it to him. He may have said oh bummer and they morphed it and lavished such praise, he could not have helped it, however, as you said the boy is a genius so there is not telling where it came from.

I, Rodius said...

Maybe so. I guess I'm not the SOLE source of info for the boy. But he's still a genius.

suttonhoo said...

agreed. genius.

anniemcq said...

Adorable genius.

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