French because I thought it was pretty and romantic and kinda cool. I was a solid B student, and once while traveling abroad in college I managed to eke out a three minute conversation in French with a Greek. I was impressed with myself.
Latin because I thought it would be helpful for my pre-med plans in college, and, oddly, Latin was kinda cool in my high school, which I think was due to the awesome woman who taught it. I passed Latin and all I really remember to this day is : Agricola, Agricolae, Agricolarum. And obviously it really helped my pre-med education, since I dropped that concentration about two weeks into the first semester of freshman year.
The point being: I've been exposed to foreign language un poco.
But now, NOW, I have a doctorate in foreign language. The language that I am fluent in? Not French, not Latin, obviously not Spanish. Nope, I am fluent in TwoYearOld.
TwoYearOld is a very complicated language that involves many dialects. My education in TwoYearOld may differ greatly from your education, but we both may be experts. The dialect of TwoYearOld that I am best versed in involves:
- Most words missing the final sound or having an over pronounced final sound. IE: English speakers say or-an-ge; TwoYearOld speakers say or-ansh. Or English speakers say milk; TwoYearOld speakers say milkchk.
- Animals are often identified only by the noises they make. IE: Snakes = ssssss. Monkeys = ooohoooohoooohaaaahaaah. Lions, Tigers, Panthers = roar. Dogs = ruffruff. Birds = tweettweettweet. Horses = neigh.
- There are words that are hard to pronouce, that should be easy, such as: water (lawter). And there are words that are easy to pronounce, that should be hard, such as: purple and Barbara.
In my particular dialect of TwoYearOld most everything is a question. Such as:
- What Daddy do, Mommy?
- What kitty do, Mommy?
- What Addie do, Mommy?
- Outside, Mommy?
- Treat milkchk, Mommy?
- Mommy, cows? Mommy, sheep? Mommy, neigh???
I find myself having to translate to most people who are unfamiliar with our particular language, or who have been out of constant exposure to TwoYearOld for over 24 months.
I have to say things like: No. No she doesn't want to brush her teeth, she wants a breakfast treat. Or: No. No she wasn't a Barbie for Halloween, she was a bumblebee.
I have to translate that the orangutans were shy, or the choo-choo train was broken, or the polar bears were sleeping. I have to translate that Aunt Kimmie gave her a haircut, or that her kitty has a booboo. I have translate that what she is saying is Beauty and The Beast not boobies. I still have to tell you that jayjay is vagina, but clear as day you can understand her when she says penis. I know that when she enthusiastically says twoweehigh, she means onetwothreefourfive.
So, really, I am fluent in TwoYearOld.
But last night Aunt Kimmie had to inform me that the word that I had been translating as stop (as in: Stop Kitty! or Stop Mama!) was actually SHUT UP.
Stop. Shut up. Hmmmm.
I guess I need some after-school tutoring if I am going to ace this course.