Z does not speak good English, but Pugsley does, almost

“Gordon Bennett!” I exclaimed. “It’s almos’ as bad as the car, innit?” I’m afraid I speak Estuary English along with most people nowadays. The Sage had just got back from his fourth visit to the dentist, his newly-crowned tooth is sparkling prettily and he has paid the bill. Nearly £800. It’s when you need the services of the dentist, the vet or the car mechanic that you appreciate the NHS.

Pugsley has achieved 4 word sentences now. Such as “Come on, Granny, outdoors” “Find socks and shoes” “Bird on the grass” “Poo on the grass” (observing Tilly performing her morning functions) and “Flies on the poo.” His sentences are always well-constructed and make sense, and he speaks very clearly, although he does not yet appreciate that a verb is necessary for grammatical correctness. Squiffany went reluctantly to her nursery school – she’s still finding it hard to leave her mummy and brother although she does join in and enjoy it when she’s there.

When Dilly and I were sitting on the wall (well, the foundations of the wall-to-be) chatting, Pugsley came up and remarked on the tiny red spiders scuttling over it. “Tiny spiders, spider webs” he remarked. “What colour are they?” asked his mother. “Spiders” he said again. “Are they blue, yellow, red or green?” I said. “Red spiders” he told me, slightly puzzled by my stupidity. “Did you know he knew that?” I asked Dilly. “No, but I didn’t know he could count either, until he did the other day.” It’s having a big sister that does it. She tells him all sorts of useful things.

19 comments on “Z does not speak good English, but Pugsley does, almost

  1. Dave

    There are spiders on the wall foundations?

    I may have to revise my offer to include danger money. I trust a full health and safety survey has been carried out?

  2. Z

    You are bigger than they are, Dave. Even a 21-month-old is safe in their presence. We will, however, carry out a Risk Assessment before we start. As in “looks a bit dodgy, what do you think” “Naa, it’ll be fine.” Or “no” if it’s you speaking.

    More importantly, none of them must be hurt. One of us will have to go around with a soft brush to sweep them to safety before we start work.

  3. Dave

    I was more concerned about girlie assistants spotting a spider, screaming and dropping a brick on my foot.

    One may now do so on my head for that comment.

  4. Gordie

    Pugsley sounds fun, and a very good observer. He sounds like he’s fascinated by the relations between things.

    I trust you to protect Dave from highly-strung young women.

  5. Z

    He is, Gordie. A few weeks ago you could see the mental process of putting words together, but it’s coming naturally now.

    I’ve never been called a gubernatrix before – I think I shall adopt it in preference to Ayatollah.

    Dave, it’s true that I can become quite exuberant. I don’t scream at spiders, though I’m of an age to have screamed at Beatles.

  6. Dandelion

    Red spiders are really mean. They bite people. And they’re too small for you to bite them back.

    Never mind the age, z: did you scream at the Beatles or not? If so, what did you hope to achieve by so doing? Any insights would be v. welcome

  7. Z

    I’ve never been bitten by one, but then I’m gentle and kind and maybe they respond to that.

    No, I didn’t. I’ve never screamed at anyone. I was quite keen, but so was everyone. I didn’t become a hippy either, though I did have long hair and floaty sort of clothes. I didn’t think like a hippy and (this is almost embarrassing to admit) I didn’t take drugs. Hippies were both idealistic and impractical and I have never been either of those things.

    I’m hippier now than I’ve ever been in my life, in fact. Still drug-free, though, sadly.

  8. Eddie 2-Sox

    “Nearly £800. It’s when you need the services of the dentist, the vet or the car mechanic that you appreciate the NHS”

    Yesterday’s £866 car bill proves your point.

    I feel The Sage may be a little deflated to hear that you’ve never screamed at anybody.

  9. crinklebee

    Pugsley sounds like a very clever grandson… and I wouldn’t worry about the absence of verbs in those sentences, Tony Blair used to manage 40-minute long conference speeches pulling off the same trick (‘New Labour. Hard working families. Tough choices. Tough on Crime, tough on the causes of crime, etc…’) and it didn’t do him any harm…

  10. Z

    Hello, Crinklebee – now you’ve got me worried. There’s local politics on both sides of the family. Mind you, Pugsley makes more sense than a fair number of politicians.

  11. Gordie

    He’s observing, and being aware. He’ll get more interested in verbs when he gets interested in action and accomplishing things. “Find socks and shoes” is a promising start. (I assume he was motivated to put them on, and do something.)

  12. Z

    I didn’t say he doesn’t use verbs, only that he doesn’t appreciate that one should be there. ‘Poo’ of course could be used as a noun or a verb, but I think he was going for the noun. It’ll all be down to education, education, education, I daresay.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.