Monday 29 November 2010

Out of the mouths of babes.

Whilst riding our motorbike into work, I came to a stop at a set of traffic lights in the city centre. There was a London style taxi passing the other way. I could not help but notice the taxi was being driven by an elderly gentleman of Asian origin, who sported a very significant white beard and what I call a Taliban hat which I think is called a Pakol or Sawati Pakol. 

Being a bit politically indiscreet - I'm a bit like that, as I tend to open my trap and say something and think about what I said later. Into my head and straight out of my mouth came the words "Look an Afghan Father Christmas"!

The Memsahib who was travelling as my pillion passenger rather than on her own motorcycle had a chuckle. (We have a two way helmet to helmet radio system, so that we can chat away even when we are on separate bikes)

Thinking about this minded me of a few incidents that happened when my daughters were both small children. Our two daughters were born less than a year apart, one was late in arriving and the other somewhat premature. But they have grown into adults and each have their own families now.  But I digress.

Picture the scene:  We are travelling into Sheffield on the bus, when a man of east African origin climbs onto the bus. We are sat in opposing seats looking at each other and glancing out of the window from time to time. Up pipes the oldest daughter who would be about five "Are you a doctor"? The man was not sure if she was talking to him, he chose to ignore her. A few moments later, in a very loud voice she enquires again. "Are you a doctor"?  Somewhat flustered he said "no - I work in the steel works" and the conversation was left at that. A while later she says "Well you look like a doctor". He smiled and I cringed!

A few weeks later, we are travelling into Sheffield again on the bus, when a man gets on who has a problem with one of his eyes. My daughter says "look at that man's eye - it looks very poorly" I whispered that it was not very nice to draw attention to his eye and left it at that. A few moments later she says "but it looks very poorly" again I reminded her about not saying anything. A few moments later the other daughter pipes up "I know we are not to say anything but his eye does look very poorly" The man got off the bus!

The third bus incident was when the youngest one was practicing her words (they had been doing sound-alike-words at school) and asking the meaning of those she did not understand. "Duck" she says followed soon afterwards by by "Luck" this was followed by "Pluck, is there such a word as pluck daddy" she says. So I explain the meaning of pluck. She starts to search for more words. "Muck - Luck - Tuck" follow soon afterwards. The bus by this time has grown very quiet - everyone is listening. "Suck - Stuck" she says and I heave a sigh of relief. "Vuck" she says and then asks me if there is such a work as "Vuck". I assured her that there was no such word - you could have heard a pin drop!

She started again "*uck, she says - is there such a word as *uck daddy" The bus was in uproar, I was trying to reassure her that there was no such word. However, she had noticed the reaction of the people on the bus. So rather than carry on with her search for words. She says "*uck is a very nice word though, are you sure it is not a word" People are convulsed and falling about with laughter - my daughter is completely transfixed by what's going on. She digs a bit deeper "everyone is laughing at *uck" she says. No I said, there laughing at that squirrel that just got off the bus. I am dying on my feet - I want to laugh, but I managed to keep my face straight. Soon the whole search for new words is forgotten and the conversation turns to one of squirrels travelling on the bus. Later, she suddenly says  "Do you like the word *uck daddy" This time we got off the bus and had a short walk home!

Later when we arrived back home - mother asks daughter how she got on today. "There was a squirrel on the bus today" she says. Mother says "what colour was it - was it grey or was it red?" "I did not see it, but me and daddy learned a word that makes people laugh" she says. I am gesticulating behind her back, but mother asks what the word was that made everyone laugh. "*uck" she says - mother was not laughing.....



  1. Sorry, help me. Was it uck (plain) or with "V" that was so atrocious? Here in US, neither are bad, but with the letter "F" in front is reference to swine mating, which has over time come to mean that of the human version. Actually, the suffix (plain) is a casual exclamation of disgust, like "ugg" or "yuck." It is not a horrendous word. Thanks for the translation.

  2. Hello kdweeb.

    "uck" sounded much like the version starting with "F" So everyone was anticipating the "F" word - it was also a surprise for my wife when we arrived home.

    Take care.



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