b Papa Dog's Blog: Giddyap!

Papa Dog's Blog

A Thing Wherein I Infrequently Write Some Stuff

Tuesday, February 01, 2005


This morning when I got to work the residual effects of my cold combined with the change in temperature from out-of-doors to climate control left my nose a runny mess. I went to the bathroom and blew with unwonted vigour. Right then I heard a car alarm go off six stories below. I don’t think there was a causal relationship, but you never know.

Ordinarily I’d make an effort to do a smooth segue at this point, but I’m pressed for time, so you get this clunky sidestep instead.

Baby Dog’s latest thing is panting, which we wonder, not entirely jokingly, if she's picked up from the dog. Actually, I think I might have inadvertently encouraged it. Ever since she was tiny, when she would look at me with wide-mouthed glee, I’d open wide too and make a noise back at her, something like “aaaahhhhhhhhh!” I wonder now if the panting didn’t’ start as an imitation of that “aaaahhhhhhhhh.” I definitely think I encouraged her with the “h” sounds, though. When she makes any sort of wide-mouthed happy exclamation at me, I always mimic it back at her. It seems likely to me that this has somehow snowballed into the funny little panting noises she makes when she’s having fun. “Hhhahh-hhhhahh-hhhhahh- hhhhahh!” It’s grown very marked in the last few days. It seems perhaps to be the way she’s going to say “Yaaay!” until she masters the “y” sound.

What makes it particularly noticeable is that she’s paired it up with another recent development – rocking and kicking. She started off grabbing hold of the front bar of the stroller or the tray of the high chair and shaking it, throwing her whole little upper body into the motion, kicking her legs for all she’s worth, until the highchair or stroller or whichever seat or conveyance starts to move. It’s a little alarming when she really gets going. I know she can’t tip the high chair over, but it’s not for lack of trying.

If Mama Dog or I happen to be holding Baby Dog while she goes into one of these panting-rocking-kicking, it looks like she's trying to make us “giddyap.” Her eyes get all wide and she breaks out the big open-mouthed smile of delight. She rocks, she kicks, she pants: ““Hhhahh-hhhhahh-hhhhahh-hhhhahh,” giddyap! “Hhhahh-hhhhahh-hhhhahh-hhhhahh!” Yaaay!

It's just about the cutest damn thing ever. Mama Dog and I have been making each other laugh by doing little imitations of it at odd moments. This is a big part of the point of being a parent, I think. This is the stuff they call “priceless” at the end of a MasterCard commercial. Hhhahh-hhhhahh-hhhhahh-hhhhahh! Giddyap!


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