Thursday, December 04, 2008

Communication skills

I was awake extra early this morning because Jill joined us in our bed sometime…I don’t know exactly when, because I can’t read the clock with my glasses off, but I guess it was around 4:00 or 4:15. Lately she’s been doing that and going back to sleep, but this morning she fidgeted, squirmed, and whined while still half-asleep until she finally snapped out of it at around 4:50 and asked for a drink. I got up with her hoping that Kim would be able to get a little more sleep before I had to leave for work. She drank some juice and then started playing on the floor, and then we had a conversation that was similar to about 10,000 other conversations I’ve had with her and her sister.

Jill picked up a little plastic toy off the floor and asked me what it was.

“That’s just a little Lego person,” I said.

She shook her head and said, “It’s not a person, it’s a boy.”

“Boys are persons, too,” I said. “Little girls and little boys are persons.”

“No, boys are jinnelamins!” she replied.

I didn’t know what she was saying. “They’re what?”

“Boys are jinnelamins. You told me that.”

“I did, huh?” I had to be careful. Making her repeat a word that no one else understands more than a couple of times often leads to her throwing herself on the floor and wailing in frustration, and it was still just ten minutes past five; everyone else was still asleep.

I decided to triangulate, in a way, on the word she was using. “What are little girls, then?”

“Little girls are layadees.”

It worked. “Oh!” I said, “Ladies and gentlemen. I got you.”


  1. Conversational triangulation... I'll have to try that the next time I'm to dense to understand what Jill is explaining to me.
    Well played sir... well played.

  2. You, sir, are quite the jinnelamin yourself!

    (I especially love the slightly-accusatory "You told me that.")

  3. Yes - jillian can play her hand quite well herself. She is no dummy, jinnelamin. Make no mistake!

    And by the way, it was 2am that she ran down the hallway to our bed. But whatever.

  4. I can't ever see the clock in the middle of the night either. Just red fuzzy blur. I hate that!

  5. Quite the the way, you spelled jinnelamin excellently well. I was able to "understand" what Jill had said right away!


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