dude looks like a lady

So never judge a book by it’s cover

Or who you’re going to love by your lover

Love put me wise to her love in disguise

She had the body of a venus

Lord imagine my surprise

(That, that) Dude looks like a lady

(That, that) Dude looks like a lady

~ Aerosmith, Dude looks like a lady

Brooke tends to speak softly. It can often be very difficult to hear her. Particularly when she swallows her words. And speaks facing away from her intended target. 

It can be hard for her and frustrating for us. I want to hear each and every word that my baby has to say. I know how precious words can be. And I want everyone else to hear her too. 

We went to the zoo this weekend with my sister and her husband, who were visiting from New York. It was a great day for the girls. They enjoyed the animals and went on tons of rides. They even got to ride on ponies, a camel and their beloved Dondi the Elephant. Incidentally, Dondi does a mean impression of a chicken. No, seriously.  Doesn’t your local zoo have an elephant that does impressions? Katie requested it and Dondi’s handler was kind enough to get a good couple of clucks out of her before our ride ended. 

Anyway, as we were waiting to ride the camel, Brooke ever so quietly said to no one in particular, “What is the camel’s name?” I waited for the zoo keeper to acknowledge this wonderfully appropriate question, but she must not have heard. Katie repeated it loudly enough to get an answer. (Curly, if you must know). I felt so badly that Brooke’s attempt hadn’t been rewarded with the information that she was seeking. We are working on getting her to use her big, loud voice. We’re getting there, but it’s taking time.

As we rode the camel, Brooke was singing softly. It took me the entire ride to figure out what she was singing.

“Curly the camel has three humps. Curly the camel has two humps. Curly the camel has one hump. Curly the camel has no humps. Curly is a horse of course.” Now we know why she needed to know his name. Have I told how much I adore this child?

A while later we were waiting for our turn to get on the zoo’s train for a tour of the grounds. There was a young dad in his early to middle twenties who had taken a seat very close to where we were standing. He was an urban looking guy in saggy, baggy faded jeans. He was sporting a goatee along with a number of piercings, including hoops in both ears.

Brooke walked right over to his chair and stood just inches away from him, staring intently at one ear and then the other. She studied him quietly for a minute or so, which he very nicely tolerated. 

And then she said (still just inches away from his face) “Do you have EARRINGS?” each word separately and carefully articulated.

He chuckled and nodded and said, “Yes, I do.”

She had already turned her head away from him as she very quietly added, “Like a LADY.”

Maybe that big, loud voice isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. Sometimes virtually inaudible is just fine.

10 thoughts on “dude looks like a lady

  1. funny, just last night we were out at a restaurant for dinner and brooke was doing her ‘puppy, puppy, puppy’ in my ear LOUDLY .. what parent figures that at some point in their lives they’ll be saying, ‘sweetie, bark quietly please. we’re in a restaurant.’ Ha!

    and funny too that you bring up the ‘are you a boy or a girl’ question. brooke asks that probably 10 times a day, though mostly just because it’s a way to initiate interaction. she asks me constantly!

  2. Haha! Yeah, thanks. Now I’ve got that song stuck in my head, and will now always associate it with Brooke checking out the dude’s hoops.

  3. Foster has the opposite going on – the inappropriately loud voice. The voice so loud that I must remind him of his “quiet voice” about 2,000 times each day. And in that inappropriately loud voice, he has asked many a person “are you a boy or a girl,” because that has been a very difficult concept for him to grasp, and it’s a topic he thinks deserves a lot of attention. A lot of attention. He has asked men who are quiet clearly manly, women who are very womanly and everyone inbetween, including the priest at Finnegan’s baptism. (Seriously, the guy was wearing beautiful robes!) He also often argues that his PT – who has been his PT since he was only 10 months old – is a man, because she’s clearly not very womanly (God, she looks like me, only 25+ years older) and she has a somewhat deep voice for a woman. He has shortened her name “Miss Ann” to “San,” because Ann is a girl’s name, and San is a boy’s name (really?) and San is a boy. Hmm. Sometimes dude does look like a lady – and vice versa.

  4. me too! the ‘real’ song is called sally the camel (it’s sung to the tune of ‘dem bones’ and has a few more words) .. but i think the curly version is my new favorite 😉

  5. I nanny for a 10 year old boy with Asberger’s and last night, he was talking about peanut butter sandwiches. He does not like jelly, “it’s too mushy”. Then he said he only likes peanut butter because it’s “smooth, smooth like-a-woman”. I would love the chance to walk around these wonderful minds, can you imagine the things we would learn?

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