“What?!” D’s dad asked incredulously over Skype, giving the impression that he didn’t believe his ears though he might have simply missed what Munchkin had said. “You have to talk nicely,” Munchkin reiterated – “If you want to talk to me, you have to talk nicely.” Where does he come up with this stuff?
The latter is a question S asks herself on a daily basis. A couple of months ago, S started asking Munchkin about his dreams and over time he started giving more detailed answers. For a while, he would repeat the same response every morning, that he dreamed of cows. Last week, however, he switched to goats. He told S that there were many goats and they were eating grass, very delicious grass. Of course, everything he says has to be taken with a large grain of salt, especially considering that he frequently gives the same answer day in and day out.
The stuff he comes up with when he is awake is far wilder. “Look at yooooou!” he crooned at D out of the blue, “You’re so cute!” This was followed in short order by him telling D in no uncertain terms, “You are not my best friend at all!” The question of friendship seems to occupy the forefront of Munchkin’s mind these days, with us alternately being best friends and not friends at all. Ditto for the aforementioned classmate, who Munchkin frequently avows is his best friend, their constant bickering in the backseat on the way to school notwithstanding.
Munchkin has grown faster at incorporating new words and phrases but he still struggles with pronunciation, resulting in comical mutations. There is the song about “ol’ McDonuck” and his farm and another about the “insy-binzy spider who climbed the water spider,” as well as “chocolak” – Munchkin’s new favorite dessert. He also gets stuck on grammar. For example, he learned the pronouns “he,” “him,” and “his,” but adamantly refuses to learn or use their female counterparts.
The best of his linguistic perversions comes when he takes Russian words and, after rolling them around in his mouth, flips to similar sounding English words that have no earthly relation to the original. For example, in response to D’s “я тебя люблю,” (I love you) Munchkin riffed on the last syllable of love…“люблю…blue…blue and green too.”
It seems that Munchkin comes out with at least one or two spectacular lines every day, most of which we don’t think to write down or which seem a lot funnier in the moment, delivered in his high-pitched voice, than written down weeks later. Still, we try to document the best of his one-liners. The most memorable of his recent zingers: “Papa, you go sleep in my bed!” – this after waking up in the middle of the night and insisting to D that he bring him into ours.