Thursday, January 05, 2006

Look, who is talking?

It is one thing to speak about yourself in the third person. But what about doing the disembodied third person talking for your child?

I have had it crop up in family disputes, awkward semi-social events and quite often in those liminal** moments one might have with a stranger. For example, I recently confessed to a certain agression towards Starbucks baristas. I have on more than one occassion taken a shot at a barista via the baby. Take the case of child greetings. When Miss Fancy first started really chatting up strangers it was stupid-cute (tm, to bitemycookie). If she did say hi to the baristas at the 'coffee store' and they did NOT respond I would mostly likely pull one of the following out of my 'too much at home, late maternity leave, and yes-I-am-undercaffinated' mommy bag.

1. I don't think the busy lady heard you baby girl
Or worse:
2. Oooh honey. I don't think you are gonna get a hi today.
Ultimately, if I don't ever plan on returning to this location I might go as far as:
3. Grumpy baristas just don't want to say hi to cute little babies, sweetheart.

So two issues here -- How wide spread is the contempt or affection within the blogging community for baristas I wonder? -- not really.. I have my own baggage behind my embarrassing disdain for this profession. I think the conflict is grounded in my bygone barista pride birthed in the early 90's when people still had a choice between java joints and bagelrys. Hell, we didn't even have the term bagelry back when our society was first developing the genre of speedy YET fresh looking; devoid of nutrients YET not greasy restaurant we would rather call a cafe. Anyway trust me it was all so much better when I worked for an independent coffee store and was so busy inventing great things like expresso soup the day the milkshake machine broke...

Butidigress..

Now back on the subject ... do tell me people -- where does the Look who's talking narrative lead?

I am particularly distressed by its usage between me and those rather dearer than baristas. You know say when my mom is babysitting and she is pushing my safety envelope by letting the baby play with our recycling.. which I tend to classify as -- you know -- garbage. Not an unheard of event that I might start to provide my critique VIA the CHILD. I figure this might have one of two outcomes. 1. Me and those other dear others will manage to work more things out than we might have done otherwise BECAUSE we have the wee human child to use as a conduit (er puppet). Good for us, bad for her. Or, 2, Aforementioned small human will continue to be be smart in spite of all of us will bide her time working on skills of walking, self-feeding, pooping in the open air, etc., and then one day she will start telling us what to do -- which is likely better for all of us.

What say you? Does anyone else do this? Or, is this a parenting no-no like I keep feeling must be the case?

** I mean I think Starbucks means itself to be a pleasant liminal experience.. where we are all transcending our class and even the very defintion of casual. But maybe we should ask their marketing department. Steamed formula with a shot, please.

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