Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Twinspeak: "The Boss"

I haven't posted about Twinspeak lately, but it is still going strong between K & O. (click here for another time I posted about Twinspeak). For those of you who are parents of twins, you know all about "Twinspeak" I'm sure, but for those of you not intimately familiar with twins, remember-- the twins (at least ours) know and often use the 'correct' word(s) when not in earshot of each other, but when in the presence of each other they consistently (and in our case, always, without any exceptions ever) use the 'twinspeak' word(s) in place of the 'correct' word(s). Some of my current favorite K-&-O-Twinspeak terms are:

  • Syrian Bars = Cereal Bars

  • Making Smoothies = either truly making yogurt smoothies in the blender or fiddling around with the humidifiers in their rooms

  • Nanny Juice = Soda

  • Bonk and/or Donk = the verb to slam with one's body

  • Vacation Trees = Palm Trees

  • Macaroni (when used just as the single word, not in conjunction with "and cheese") = the adjective anything good

  • Bunny Macaroni = the adjective anything super good

  • Stinky Macaroni = the adjective anything not good or in place of the word "yucky"

The funniest Twinspeak thing of late, however, is this~~~

A couple of weeks ago the four of us were eating lunch at home on a weekend. Owen started acting up at the table. Kyle said (in a very sing-song-y, bossy tone), "Owen, remember your table manners!" Immediately I said (firmly, to Kyle), "Kyle, that is not your job," and then (firmly, to Owen), "Owen, eat your lunch and stop acting up." Kyle said, "Why that not my job?" I said, "Because you are not the Mommy, you are the Brother." Owen, acting sassy, said, "I like it when Kyle says that to me." And Kyle jumped right in, "See, he likes it when I say that to him!?!" (this is another regular theme in our house-- often when we try to scold one of them for bothering the other, the 'other' will jump in claiming that they "like it" when their brother does whatever it is that we're trying to scold him for). "O.k., listen, both of you," I said "that's enough. Kyle, you are not the boss. Owen, you are not the boss. I am the boss." They both looked at me like I was crazy. So I tried to be more clear, "In this house, I am the boss!" Very upset, Kyle retorted right away, "No! MORFAR IS THE BOSS!" I didn't quite know how to react. Braydon was just sitting there watching this whole scene unfold. I said, "O.k., at MorFar's house, he is the boss, but at our house I am the boss." Owen was clearly unsettled by this. "No!" he said, "You are not the boss, MorFar is the boss." Kyle was deeply disturbed, to say the least. "No!!!" he yelled, "No! No! No! MorFar is the boss!" I had no idea where this was coming from or where it was leading, but I wanted to cut it off right there. I leaned down to his level and looked him in the eyes like I meant business, "No, Kyle, I am the boss of this house." Since that day either K or O or both have brought up the whole "Boss" topic at least once a day. It always revolves around "MorFar is the boss." Often while driving in the car I'll hear the two of them in the backseat discussing it: "Mommy is not the boss, MorFar is the real boss." "Yes! That's right, MorFar is the boss!" Or, I'll overhear them playing together in the playroom: "The boss is MorFar, MorFar is the boss!" "Yes! That's exactly right! MorFar is the boss!" These sorts of exchanges will go on, back-and-forth, back-and-forth over and over between the two of them. Anytime the word "boss" comes up, they say "MorFar" and in the past few days I've noticed them both starting to replace the word "boss" with the word "MorFar" (as in, "We are pilots! We are the MorFar of this airplane!" or "We are pretending we are teachers! We are the MorFar of this school!!!") I have been at an utter loss as to what this is all about... wavering between ignoring it and thinking it is just nothing, to frantically fretting that it is some sort of weird twisted three-year-old boy form of patriarchal-female-disempowerment. 'Why my father?' I've thought over and over in my own mind. 'Yes, I know they worship him, but The Boss?' And 'If they insist on it being a man instead of being me, then why not Braydon, why my father?????' I've fluctuated between just brushing it off and spending lots of time trying to untangle the whole mess in my own mind. And I've kept reminding the two of them that indeed, at our house, "Mommy is the boss." Until... yesterday...

When I got home from work a package was sitting in the garage. It was addressed to Kyle and Owen. And it was from MorFar! As soon as I got in the door the boys ripped it open in two seconds flat. Inside were two stuffed Fenway Park 'Green Monsters' wearing Boston Red Sox shirts and baseball hats. The boys were thrilled beyond belief, of course. They carrried them around for the rest of the night. They pretended they were "hitting the ball." And the "Red Soxes" (as they quickly came to call them) even had to eat dinner with us at the table. At one point K & O came right up to me, in the kitchen, as I was making dinner. "See," Kyle said, pointing to the "B" on the hat of his, "see, Mommy, it is a 'B' for Bosssssston Red Sox. See!?!?!" Halfway ignoring it, I said, "Uh huh." Owen tugged at my arm, "Look, Mommy, see, from MorFar, the Bosssssssssssssston Red Sox. See, Mommy??!!" I turned to look down at the two of them. Both of them standing there, holding their "Red Soxes" looking up at me with serious determined faces. "Yes," I said, "I see." Kyle smiled smugly and said, "See, Mommy, Bosssston Red Sox! See! MorFar is the Bossssssss!" And then they both took off running, very satisfied, with their "Red Soxes," to the playroom.


Bek said...

Wow... I don't know which is better, the fact that they SPEAK SO WELL/MUCH (maybe I am just used to my own grunt and pointer) or that they "logic-ed" that one out. That is amazing!

I love these stories of the boys.

BTW.. I started saying that phrase when Lu was 3 years old "you are not the mom, worry about yourself" and I haven't stopped saying it. That might be your biggest challenge...keeping the boys for "parenting" their sister... Poor Lu spends MOST of her time "parenting" Jacob....

Maybe MorFar can be the BOOOOSSSS-ton and you can be the BOSS!!

Bek said...

Did you hear that at Garcia's 2 Chile they were just referred twins!! How fun!

Story of our Life said...

Cute!! Very Cute!!

At our house...
I am the MOM!! Because MOM said so. There is no other reason to question me. I am the MOM and if MOM is not happy NOBODY is happy!!

When we adopted our son his attachment therapist made it VERY clear that NO MATTER what MOM said...went. Regardless if Dad didn't like he it was to never "question" mom in front of C.

Few weeks ago I had a discussion about the fact this very issue w/my 5 and 8 yr old. I've even had to revert back to making them answer me by saying "Yes, Mom" to acknowledge that indeed...I am the mom, indeed they did hear me".

After our little discussion my 3 yr old nephew came over. My son says "David...she is the MOM of the house. You don't call her MOM but you need to say yes mom and listten to her or she will NOT BE HAPPY".

The thinks they come up with are soooo sweet!!!

Malia'sMama said...

I thought Springsteen was "the Boss" :)

Patricia said...

Priceless! :)

Life in Fitzville said...

This had me rolling! Go Morfar! We are mighty big Bosssss fans here too!

Isn't it the funniest (or sometimes not so funny... sometimes humbling) when we so completely over-think ourselves? I have done this exact thing before. Had entire psychological discussions with myself, trying to dissect the exact meaning behind something my kids said, and been very upset by it... until I find out it was just a clear misunderstanding caused by something said in a totally child related way.

Too, too funny! said...

Yes, your fears are realized. K's & O's insistence on employment of the metonymic "Morfar" to indicate the best or most competent whatever is a reflection of this patriarchal, father-knows-best, sugar daddy world. Sigh.

Fight the power, HBJ! Love em, but let them know who can bring home the bacon AND fry it up!

P.S. And don't let Braydon fool you. He's one of them. Give him a few more years to get a little gray about the temples and the boys will be saying,"Oh! That's the Papi of hamburgers!" Hahahaha.

Mrs. Baker said... I was laughing so histarically at this entry that I almost fell off my chair.

Seriously...I was laughing so hard my husband came in from the other room to see what was so funny.

You are a great writer and I am really really enjoying reading your blog.....please keep writing stories like these!!!

erin said...

Our guys often defend the other's inappropriate behavior with "but I LIKE it," when we try to help them behave -- especially at the table. Even after one of them has wailed in faux pain at the other's transgression!

I'm glad you all figured out the "boss" issue! And I get the worry about the patriarchal-female dis-empowerment -- unfortunately it is a real thing at our house. Fortunately it's getting better lately, what with all of the power figures in H's life (besides his dad) being women.

Karen Vitek said...

Well I knew right from the beginning of this story why "MorFar" was the Boss... MorFar has that type of personna that you believe he is the boss! But his love of the Red Sox is clearly coming through too. I think he could get Mayor Bloomberg to love the Red Sox!!