Talking Smack

“Mom?  Where’s my smack?”  My five-year-old son demands the answer.  There’s less question and more accusation in his voice.

“Your smack?” I clarify. It’s always important to ask clarifying questions.  Clarifying questions save us a lot of time around here.

“Yes, Mom,” says Cai, using his most “Duh, Mom” voice. “My smack. SUH-mack.” He pronounces that last very slowly, making sure I get every syllable to avoid misunderstanding.

“Well, Cai,” I reply, “I didn’t know you did smack, but I’m very glad you told me.  Has this been going on long?”

“Yes, Mom.  I do smack every day.”

OK, then. That’s super helpful information. This is why we talk to our kids, right? So we know what’s going on. So we can step in. So we can get them help.

“What does your smack look like, Cai?”

“Um, Mah-ahm.” (Mah-ahm is for those times when a one-syllable “Mom” just won’t do – usually used during times of prolonged exasperation.) “Mah-ahm, it’s in a baggy. You know. My smack baggy?”

Greg enters the room. “Your smack baggy?” Greg asks Cai.

Cai sighs, seriously put out that he just described his vanishing smack problem to his befuddled mother and he’s going to have to do it again for his father’s benefit.

“Yes, Dad.  My smack baggy.  I can’t find my smack ANYWHERE.”

“Is it a dime bag or a nickel bag?” Greg asks. This is why it’s often important to involve two parents. I didn’t even think to ask.

“Dah-ahd.” (I love it when dads get a two-syllable name.) “I am TOO LITTLE to know about dimes and mickels.”

“But you’re not too little to know about smack?”

“I JUST WANT MY SMACK!” We are clearly not helping our child rapidly enough to assuage him. Although I suspect that people without their smack are irritable and prone to emotional outbursts, so maybe it’s the lack of smack talking.

While we’re mid-discussion with Cai about his smack problem, his siblings are tearing apart the house. It soon becomes clear that they’re searching high and low for the smack. What remains unclear is whether they intend to a) return Cai’s smack to him, b) hand it over to his parents, or c) devour it themselves.

Cai begins to panic as he realizes the depth and breadth of a, b, and c. “NO ONE EAT MY SMACK!” he yells, running after them. “NO ONE EAT IT!  NO ONE EAT MY SMACK.”

It’s not funny, which explains why Greg and I are definitely not laughing, holding our sides, and laughing some more.

Eventually, Cai’s brother, Cael, finds the missing smack and does, in fact, return it to its rightful owner. Although the smack is a little worse for the wear, all squashed and smashed down in its baggy, Cai hugs it to his chest. “Thank you, Cael! Oh, thank you for finding my smack!”

Just then, Miss Aden, one of my speech delayed kiddos, raises her head and says, “Did you say sMack?  I fink it’s called sNNNack.”

Cai and Cael look to their giggling parents. “Is that right, Mom?  Is it called sNNNack?”

“Good job, Miss Aden,” I say.  And I mean it.  My little girl’s rolling right along on her pronunciation, and I’m proud of her. No more smack for my little ones! Not with their sister around to help keep them on the straight and narrow.

It’s just a typical afternoon in these parts… talking a little smack.

But do me a tiny favor.  No one tell Aden that those smelly black and white critters aren’t really called “stunks.”  I don’t think I can take losing our smack and our stunks all in one day.

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ABOUT BETH WOOLSEY I'm a writer. And a mess. And mouthy, brave, and strong. I believe we all belong to each other. I believe in the long way 'round. And I believe, always, in grace in the grime and wonder in the wild of a life lived off course from what was, once, a perfectly good plan.
20 comments
  1. My kids are grown. But this fun and brings back memories of words they tortured.

    1. 🙂 Thanks, Joann. Glad to stoke the memory fire.

  2. oh my goodness, i know i’m a year late to the party here, but i’m always up for observing the habits of junkies. hilarious!

  3. […] posted by Beth Woolsey. If you’re interested in another fantastic post by Beth, see this post on talking smack. Beth Woolsey is the writer and humorist behind the Five Kids Is A Lot of Kids […]

  4. We have a 3 year old. (And a 15 month old – but he’s not really talking… yet). The things that come out of this mouth crack.me.up. Trucks were frucks, and sometimes (always in public when he would loudly announce that he had spotted one) he forget to pronounce the “r”. My brothers (who are 18 and 21) think it’s awesome to get him to say dumptruck over and over (hear: dum f*uck).

    Also, one night we were going to watch The Lion King with him as a special treat. He started asking for the f**king movie. We could hardly contain ourselves. Don’t worry, before we bothered to figure it out – we got it on video. It took me three days of him talking about the f**king movie to figure out he meant “dragon movie”. I know, there aren’t dragons in The Lion King, but nonetheless. Dragon. Ahhh, yes.

    Move ahead to dinner a few nights later – he states “Me no eats the dinner ANYMORE” (with his hands making the “safe” sign for baseball… he’s quite dramatic). He was having chicken. So my husband asks him, “You don’t want to eat the dragon chicken anymore???” He happily repeated it with his own twist “Me no eats the f**king chicken ANYMORE”. We could hardly contain ourselves.

    Our family got wind of all of this… so he talked about mother dragons and dragonflies and all sorts of dragons. Last week we visited family again and someone asked him something about dragons, which he repeatedly perfectly. Dragons.

    Sigh. I was kinda sad it was all over and he was now saying it correctly!!!

    🙂

  5. I think I may well have found a new blog to follow…love the posts I’ve read so far…

    And may my husband continue always to wear ear muffins while he does the mowing!

  6. This one had me rolling. Doing the quite tear up laugh because I am at work and I don’t want to make a scene. Afterall this is not work related. I just stubled across your blog and I LOVE your honesty and humor!

  7. I see this is an older post, but I just found it and I just about died reading it, I was laughing so hard. Sooo funny!

  8. Oh, at least you have the assurance that while speech impediments can be frustrating they’ll provide you with infinite laughs! I’m at a loss for things my kids said right now… the only I can remember is Cory used to call a helicopter a “hi-cow”. 😉

  9. I say we make coffee a verb. It practically already is! I have been known to say “Please coffee me, I’m trying to get ready for work!” (trans: Please make my to go cup of coffee, I’m running late and trying not to stab myself in the eye with the mascara wand!)

    But back to the “smack”…I miss tisses and tuddles. DD 11 at 3 would say “Mommy, I wuv you tisses. Tan we tuddle and watch a mooby?” So we’d tiss and tuddle on the towch and watch a mooby. Oh, how I miss those days…..

    Those memories were what caused me, in the middle of a fairly stressful day to laugh so hard tears were streaming down my face at your post. Thank you!

    1. So sweet! Tuddles and tisses with moobies. My kids are sleeping; I might have to sneak into their rooms and tiss them right this minute.

      Also – I’m with you. Let’s start a movement to make coffee a verb. We can be trendsetters… well, right after Julie’s daughter. So sort of 2nd place trendsetters. Good enough. 😉

  10. Oh my gosh! I just about wet my pants while I was reading this (seriously).

    My 5 year old calls the remote the comote and if you repeat something that she says, she will tell you to stop coffeeing her. I keep trying to tell her that it’s copying, not coffeeing but she disagrees and tells me that I’m wrong and she is right. I thought we had at least another 7-8 years left before she knew everything, but apparently she knows it all now.

    1. Oh my gosh! I totally need someone to coffee me! Why, oh why, is coffee not a verb? I think your daughter is seriously on to something.

  11. I guess that makes me your kids’ smack dealer.

    1. Don’t you live too close to a school to be dealing smack?

      You even put it in baggies.

  12. Actually, I think “stunks” is a much better word for them.

    1. Me, too! My oldest called them stunks. And I have a reader whose child called them stunks. Now my youngest 3 call them stunks. I guess it’s universal! We really should change the animal’s name permanently.

  13. I love it! Kids are so great when they have no idea what they’re saying! lol My 4 yr old has a purple/green/gold stuffed turtle from a Mardi Gras parade and he proudly tells anyone who asks that it is name “Turty”……. I always spell it for them…. lol Was a bit more troubled with my oldest’s speech issues–when ‘flag’ was pronounced without an ‘l’ and ‘truck’ began with the sound of an ‘f’ instead of the ‘tr’ traditionally used… And I really LOVED it when the second born said “yee-yee” when he meant to say “jelly”, even though it was only once or twice and completely out of the blue…

    1. Bahaha!

      I love the truck! My daughter used to do that with Duck, Duck, Goose. That was one screwed goose, I’ll tell ya. 😉

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