A Recalcitrant Wife and Mother Tells All

Tag: speech impairment

WTF Wednesday: The Very Special Halloween Hangover Edition

{ding dong}

You open the door.

Here’s what you see:

Witch, Orca Whale, Skeleton, Halloween 2011.

Immediately followed by the sound of my little Bucket Head singing:

“Trick-or-Treat! Smell my feet! Give me something good to eat!”

Always a crowd pleaser.

But did you know there is a second verse to this classic holiday greeting?

There is.

It goes like this:

“If you don’t, I don’t care. I’ll pull down your underwear!”


Who on earth taught that to my sweet, innocent, cherub-faced four year old son?

Uh, that would be me.

Sorry, neighbors.

In hindsight, bad idea. Apparently, pulling down other people’s underwear without their consent isn’t very socially acceptable nowadays.

But when I was a kid? Shoot. We called that “getting de-pantsed.” It was a classic bully maneuver. Naturally, I rocked at it. Just ask my little brother.

Something else you may have heard if you trick-or-treated on my street was Bucket Head shouting “I AM NOT A SHART.”

Bless his little speech impaired heart.

What he meant was “I am not a SHARK.”

And I totally feel his pain. Really I do.

What the fuck is wrong with grown-ups today?

People, if you don’t know the difference between an orca whale and a shark, you need to spend less time chatting up little trick-or-treaters and more time watching Animal Planet.

We're going to need a bigger boat.

I can’t even tell you how many adults told my Bucket Head, “My, what a scary shark you are!” To which he would always reply that he was not a shark, but an orca whale (duh). As the evening progressed, he became more and more frustrated with having to correct so many people.

And listen, the only thing worse than trying to correct an imbecilic adult who doesn’t know their sea creatures is then being laughed at for your mispronunciation by said imbecile. Thanks a lot, neighbors.

But my biggest WTF Halloween moment occurred when one of my kids received this in their treat bag:

Valentine Candy. To: _______, From: Bridget. On Halloween.

Say it with me, friends:




I know what some of you are thinking. It’s kinda brilliant.


That’s jive. (Says the lady who hands out gently used Happy Meal Toys.)

Even though I’m a huge advocate of being green and frugal, giving out personalized Valentine candy treats on Halloween is just plain shitty. That’s like giving out soy sauce packets and used dryer sheets. Don’t be a douche. These kids are working hard to walk all the way to your door and sing the “smell my feet” song. Eight month old off-holiday candy is a TRICK, not a treat. Save it for the un-costumed teenagers who show up after your porch light is off, not the cute little SHART who still says “gank you.”

And now, to answer all those lingering questions.

Did our house get egged?

No! In fact, I observed The Gatekeeper greet the first few trick-or-treaters and whenever he asked them “Would you like candy or a toy?” they always said “A TOY!!!” So there, doubters. Kids love plastic crap. Told you!

Did I dress up?

Yes indeedy. I did. Well, kinda. A hat/wig, lipstick, tattoo sleeves, and a bracelet count, right?

Semi-Biker Chick with her brood.

Good enough. Or as my stapler-wielding Mama says, “Done is better than perfect.” 

We even returned to our hippie friends’ 2nd annual Halloween Party, where once again, I was the only adult in costume. No, The Gatekeeper didn’t come. He did dress up though…as an Ohio State Fan. Whoop-dee-frickin’-doo. He stayed home and watched football and drank beer while I bravely battled my social-anxieties alone at a dry party. Awesome.

Who did we trick-or-treat with this year? 

We trick-or-treated with Mama Cloud and her kids again and it was delightful, as usual. She and I have similar parenting styles and it’s so refreshing to not have to be the lone bad cop all night shrieking things like “DO YOU HAVE A DEATH WISH? THEN GET OUT OF THE MIDDLE OF THE GOD DAMN STREET, Honey.” (Because tacking “Honey” onto any rant makes it not quite so negative, right?)

Did Nature Boy trick-or-treat with his friends and no adult supervision? 

Aw HAYLE NO. He just turned 12. He and his best friend came with me and Mama Cloud and our combined broods. And it was a good thing, too, because he almost peed his pants at the local haunted house…it was that scary. I ended up going through it twice because he was too afraid to come with me and his best friend the first time. Pussy. Kidding. We held hands the whole time, but it was totally dark, so his best friend couldn’t see what a scaredy-cat he was. Too cute.

Was alcohol involved?

What are you, slow? Of course. I had to make up for the withdrawal I was experiencing after the hippie Halloween party.

So that’s that! I hope your Halloween was a happy one too and that you got only treats and no tricks in your goodie bags! And by goodie bags, of course I mean vaginas.

I’m linking up with Sellabit Mum and Fourplusanangel for Boo in the Blogosphere and Nicole at By Word of Mouth Musings because I obviously need to make some new friends.



with kisses and consensual de-pantsing,


© Copyright 2011, The Bearded Iris. All rights reserved.

And that’s why Speech Pathologists are bad mofos.

Today was Bucket Head’s first day of Speech Therapy for the new school year.

It seems like just yesterday he was referred for a speech screening… the day I accidentally wore two pairs of underpants to church. Ah, good times. And let’s not forgot the IEP last year where I made all those dick jokes. There must be a special place in Heaven for Speech Pathologists who have to work with the children of parents like me.

I’m thrilled that he is going to get the help he needs, but I’m also sad at the thought of losing his adorable little Bucket Headisms. That kid sure does make us giggle (secretly) with his unique way of speaking.

It will be good though when he stops saying things like:

“I wanna rape.” (Which means “I want a grape.”)

“I yuv cheese dicks.” (“I love cheese sticks.”)

And my personal favorite:

“May I have a douche bag?” (“May I have a juice bag?”)

Bucket Head’s Speech Therapist is my new hero. She’s so sweet and positive and patient…with both of us.

And the more I’m exposed to it, the more I’m convinced that you have to be a pretty bad mofo to be a good Speech Pathologist.

Not only do they have to frequently work with unstable parents, but also, they have some of the coolest and most dangerous lingo you’ll hear in an educational setting.

Take my sweet little Bucket Head, for instance. The phonological processes he is in need of help with are:

Cluster Reduction
In Speech Pathology, that’s what you call it when someone reduces the number of sounds in a blend, like saying “ream” instead of “dream” or “wack” instead of “black.” This can be a dangerous speech impairment, particularly if one lives near the ‘hood and/or near overprivileged suburban white kids who speak in an urban dialect for show. For instance, saying “That boy’s shirt is wack,” could be misinterpreted as a dis which could lead to violence.

Personally, I would like to use the term cluster reduction in regards to my extended family life, which can often be one big cluster f*ck, particularly after adult beverages have been consumed. So now you’ll know what I mean when you hear me say “Shoot y’all, we need some cluster reduction up in huuuur,” at the next Beard Family Reunion.

To a Speech Pathologist, this means that a sound that is normally made with the middle of the tongue in contact with the palate towards the back of the mouth like /k/ or /g/, is replaced with a consonant produced at the front of the mouth like /t/ or /d/. Bucket Head says “titty” instead of “kitty.” That’s always a real crowd pleaser.

However, in other circles, “fronting” means you are acting like you are more, or you have more than what really exists. As in “Prudence wore those fake Chanel earrings like she was made of money, but that bitch was straight up fronting.”

If you are a Speech Pathologist in an urban area and you tell a parent that their child is “fronting,” you better be prepared for a response like this:




In Speech Pathology, “gliding” means someone replaces the “liquid” consonants /l/ and /r/ with /w/ or ‘y’. So when Bucket Head says “I yuv yickin’ yemons, Mommy,” he is gliding his liquid consonants.

However, according to the Urban Dictionary, “gliding” is short for “glidin’ dirty,” an unhygienic form of “homie gliding,” which is defined as a sexual act between two male heterosexual friends, usually involving alcohol, lubrication, and too much free time.

Thus, I would strongly encourage Speech Pathologists in urban settings to avoid using the term “gliding” at all. Mmmmkay?

Just something to thing about.

Now go hug a Speech Pathologist! They deserve it!

Signing off, without a lisp, thanks to MY speech therapist many moons ago,


Have you hugged an SPL professional today? They have one of the most gangsta jobs in any school setting. Read why one suburban mom thinks Speech Pathologists are such bad mofos!

© Copyright 2011, Leslie Marinelli, The Bearded Iris. All rights reserved.

Lousy Grammar

It’s (Almost) Wordless Wednesday here at The Bearded Iris’ Blog-o-Fun:

I don’t know what bothers me more… the potential lice infestation or the grammatical error. I know it’s only preschool, but he already has a pretty profound speech impediment and SpongeBob for a babysitter.

Itchy. So itchy.


© Copyright 2011, The Bearded Iris.


Jesus Loves Me

gool bus

tute titty

I regot







If you understand any of those words, congratulations… you speak Bucket Head.

If not, allow me to translate:

gool bus = school bus

tute titty = cute kitty

I regot = I forgot

no-ball = snow ball

nack = snack

woperate = cooperate

yater = later

nuggle = snuggle

wack = black

For those of you not playing along at home, I’ll summarize: he can’t really pronounce beginning blends, the letter “L,” or the hard “C” sound. I think it’s pretty cute. The kid is not even four years old yet, so I really hadn’t given it a second thought.

Until yesterday.

As if I didn’t have enough on my mind; particularly after realizing, at church, while in the midst of my assigned shift of Eucharistic Adoration, that the semi-clean jeans blindly retrieved from my bedroom floor that morning included a stow-away pair of dirty panties nestled in one of the pant legs. Apparently even Jesus needs a good laugh now and then.

Needless to say, after church I was not my usual confident self when I arrived at preschool to pick up Bucket Head. After a quick pat down in the parking lot to make sure there were no other sundry items hitchin’ a ride, I made my way through the throngs of noisy nannies, grannies, and professional SAHMs, to Ms. Evelyn’s classroom door. Cue unpleasant surprise number two…

Preschool Teacher: “Did you happen to sign Bucket Head up for the speech screenings next week?”

Me: “Noooooo. (perplexed look and tilt of head) Do you think I should????”

Preschool Teacher: “Well, yes.” (facial express: DUH.)

Me: “Oh my God, are you serious?” (a little slow on the uptake, as usual)

Preschool Teacher: “It’s just that I noticed he struggles with several different sounds and it would really help him to be ready for kindergarten if he could work on that.”

Me: (dry mouth, gulp, followed by disbelieving head shake) “I remember the flyer coming home in his backpack a few weeks ago, but I tossed it in the recycling bin thinking it didn’t apply to him. I mean, he’s only three. Surely this is just a developmental thing. Right?” (another painful dry gulp)

Preschool Teacher: (nervous smile and eye twitch)

Me: (rapidly and a little too close) “I mean, how bad is it?… compared to the other kids in your class.”

Preschool Teacher: (stepping back a bit and placing hands in the self-defense-ready position) “Well, I can’t discuss other students, but it couldn’t hurt to get the screening.”

Me: (suddenly realizing that I’ve frightened her) “Oh. Okay. I guess I’ll stop by the office and see if they have an extra flyer.” (big sigh)

Bucket Head: “See you yater, ayyigator!” (to Teacher, big smile and wave)

And…. scene.

Perhaps a woman of greater poise could have managed this information better, but unpleasant surprises aren’t really my thing. And two in one day? And immediately following an hour of alone time with The Blessed Sacrament? What… did I not pray hard enough? Did I pray for the wrong things? Is God punishing me for my slovenly ways and clingy panties? Or is this all just a coincidence…

I just don’t know.

But I can tell you this: it never feels good to hear “there’s something wrong with your child.” After three kids and several high-maintenance pets, you’d think I’d be used to it by now, but no… it is always a shot to the heart. Granted, I realize there are many many worse things a parent can hear, and I’m grateful that whatever this is or isn’t, it’s probably fixable. My heart and prayers go out to all the parents out there who are facing much scarier battles.

So today, in addition to vowing that I will put my skivvies in the hamper from now on, I give thanks to God for not giving me more than I can ever handle. Clearly he/she knows me all too well.  To Ms. Evelyn and all the teachers of the world who deliver difficult news to freaky parents, I salute you. Thank you for all the love and care you give to our children every day. And Jesus, you are welcome for the slapstick yesterday. Try the veal (just not on Friday). I’ll be here all week.

In prayerful thanksgiving and praise,


© Copyright 2011, The Bearded Iris

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