Wednesday, February 22, 2012

My Wombatty Linguistical Tensai

I took Wombat to his obligatory before school well child check today - even though he has only RECENTLY turned 4 and will not actually be attending school until next year. Whilst in the playroom waiting to be seen Wombat played happily with the multiplicity of toys chattering away in seemingly random syllables which he announced was him "speaking Japanese". Don't be fooled though that these ARE random syllables - this boy listens carefully to his Mama when she speaks to him in Japanese and consistently uses syllables with vowel sounds consistent with those used in Japanese - he's also picked up the use of ne and no as end of sentence inflections and seems to understand that the former is similar to "eh?" and is used as a casual means of seeking confirmation/reassurance, whilst the latter indicates that the sentence is a question, and seems to be endeavouring to figure out other syntactical intricacies in general.
Near the end of our visit the Nurse who had asked Wombat to thread large beads onto a plastic cord (a subtle yet predictable test of fine motor skills) then asked him, "Do you think you could count these for me and tell me how many there are?"
I grinned inwardly - every Saturday Wombat counts his Grandma's pills for her - EAAAAASY - I thought. I didn't know the half of it!
Wombat began to point at each bead and count. He counted one through six without breaking a sweat. Then he stopped. He went back to the start. He pointed at each bead and this time coolly rattled off the colours like he was some expert interior decorator informing the Nurse of her optimum palette of Autumn colours "White, Orange, Purple, Black...."
The Nurse paused, "Oh. You're telling me the colours. Good. Nice."
Wombat stopped again. He pointed at the first bead again, and this, this was the cherry on top people.
"Uno, dos, tres...."
Well, he did get a little lost after that and needed some prompting from me but his pronunciation is pretty much faultless.

When I informed Chris of this his response was to laugh uncontrollably, exclaim," He DIDN'T?!?!!" and then remark "Show off."

Tensai da wa.


Sherry said...

He is not 4. You are full of lies.

I tried to put that last phrase into Google Translate, but it didn't seem to be Japanese, or at least Google didn't recognize it as such. (And we all know that Google can't be wrong.) Now I feel out in the cold. (Also a cold front came in recently, so this sentence can be both figurative and literal.)

Ana said...

Oh but he IS 4. And in December he will be FIVE.

And Monk, Monk reaches DOUBLE digits this year!!

Tensai = Genius.
Tensai da wa = He's a Genius.
(colloquial, informal, traditionally female phrasing)