I know what it sounds like, but to assure you that I haven’t fallen into a literary rut of feces, here is a definition:
Logorrheaˌlôgəˈrēə,ˌlägə-/ noun. 1. a tendency to extreme loquacity.
One year ago, a friend of mine was over who has a son. He was three at the time and I remember very distinctly my friend watching my daughter playing quietly with some of her toys. He turned to me with a knowing expression and simply said, “Enjoy the silence.” Of course, at the time Josie was two and I was blissfully living downstream from the dam and had yet to notice its cracks. Back then, my wife and I were getting, maybe, three word phrases from Josie – simple sentences that we delighted in recounting to one another, which only parents could take delight in.
“You’ll never guess what she said today,” I would say to my wife upon arriving home.
“What?” she would say breathlessly, as if I had just returned from the reading of my rich dead uncle’s will.
“Ducks…fly…sky,” I would recount slowly, like a poet reciting halting lines of verse.
One year later, and that little speech center in her brain has gone supernovae. Before it happens to your two year-old, you never really think it’s possible – like when they were a baby, and you could never imagine them with teeth. But it happens. Oh does it happen. And I’m not saying that it always feels like drowning in a deluge of verbal vomit. Like yesterday, she said the sweetest thing, I honest to god wrote it down and read it to my wife when she came home: “One day, when I’m bigger, I will fly up to the moon. Not with one spaceships. With my wings.”
Adorable, right? Except that the other 99% of the time what comes out of her mouth is a stream of consciousness. But from a toddler’s consciousness, so it’s just a bunch of random words and ideas rattling around a garbage disposal and what comes out looks like what happens when I connect my shop-vac’s hose to the exhaust port by accident.
To give you an idea – a tiny taste of the endless train of mangled verbs and nouns I listen to all day – here is a transcript of a video I took today. She was reading a dinosaur book while playing with a T-Rex figure, and I just set the video camera on the table and walked away. This took the time it took me to make a cup of coffee, spiked with an unmentionable amount of Bailey’s. I added punctuation to make it intelligible, but I regret doing so now. There should really be no punctuation at all.
“…mouth this the beak of the triceratops mouth you ate the whoooole beak the whole triceratops you needed this you ate the tail to grow your tail you ate his mouth to grow your mouth you ate his eye to grow your two eyes you growed your feet for his feet you ate mate you ate yourself. Pretty sad to ate himself him just lay down and another one came and say, “What you doing laying on ground?”
“I’m just laying on the ground,” he say.
“I’m been talking something.”
“What you talking?”
“I don’t know. I’m talking another one of my friends.”
“You talking one swimming dino?”
“Yeah. I’m talking with triceratops. Right over there. (in pirate accent). I’m talking…I’m talking…um um um um um um uh um saying that they ate all meat this guy knocked hisself right over by the tail of this big dino and this dino will fell right down and this volcano erupt last time trannafaur rex last time him erupting. this dino died last year pretty sad your friend this guy flow then the volcano erupted then this guy had to five um I’m wanting to give one…(inaudible gibberish)…I’m pretending you get one shoot this dino you have a longer tail that you want I show you you grow this much.
This will melt your brain.
Not that I’m advocating the use of torture, but the U.S. government could save itself a lot of hassle from the likes of aggrieved death metal bands by recording toddlers talking to themselves and broadcasting that instead to the prisoners in Guantanamo. Better yet, ship a barge of toddlers over there. I hear they already play the theme song from Barney over and over and over and I bet the food is really bland too, probably a lot of plain pasta and white bread. They’d fit right in!
I realize this post sounds tantamount to a cry for help. It is not. It’s simply a birthday wish for noise cancelling Bose headphones.
Or, at the very least, a lock on the bathroom door.