Friday, September 15, 2006


Charlotte seems to take after her mother linguistically. When I was little and I didn't know a word, I didn't let that bother me, I didn't bother to ask 'what's that?' as most toddlers do annoyingly over and over, I simply chose what something was to be called and called it that, giving no explanation or forewarning! One day a digger was clearing a building site at the back of our house. I was approximately 2. I apparently told mum to look out at the 'jalt'. To this day everyone in my family calls a digger a jalt.
Today I had forgotten to make the kids' lunches so I gave them money for a school lunch: £1-50 each. The problem being that I only had 4 £1 coins. So I handed them each £2. Marcel is good and honest so said instantly: 'You'll be wanting the 50p back, I guess?' I said no he could keep it since he asked and didn't just go and spend it. Charlotte is more of a chancer though so immediately inquired, 'Is it ok, mum, if I use the 50p to buy one vending?', 'what???' I asked, ' a vending, you know, from the vending machine!' As usual she looked at me as if I was the stupid one - that face that says 'Come on mum you write dictionaries you should understand me!' So I guess I need to add the noun 'vending' to the dictionary once I go back to work, or at the very least add it to the family's eternal vocabulary.


Thomas Widmann said...

I love the jalt and the vending! In my family, our odd words often come from my dad's way of speaking Danish before he learnt it fluently. For instance, we call the flat thing you put under a pan to protect the table an undersåt (from sætte under) – however this word normally means "subject (to a king)", and the normal Danish word for the thing is bordskåner.

Sebastian said...

Aj hvor smart - det havde da været mere logisk at kalde den en "undersæt", dog; men den kan jo forstå som "undersätsich", som betyder underdanig,. ikk'?

Thomas Widmann said...

Ja, men undersæt findes jo ikke – det gør undersåt (omend med en anden betydning). :-)