dreadedcandiru2 (dreadedcandiru2) wrote,

Native tongues and other roadblocks......

One of THE most annoying things about the strip is having to watch Elizabeth and April use age-inappropriate language for far and away too long. It irritates me to have to trudge through strips that say that it's funny and cute that a ten- or eleven-year old girl talks like she's still the frightened four year old screaming NO WANNA BAFF!!!!!!!! only to speak Generic Teenese when she becomes one of THEM or to see Lizzie go straight from childish malapropisms and baby talk to Standard English five seconds after she dismisses sight unseen the idea that Anthony could possibly be interested in her. The underlying reason that the Pattersons think that this is desirable seems to stem from Elly's irritating belief that her daughters are somehow replacements for that blasted walking doll that Phil didn't mean to break. It seems to me sometimes that she doesn't really want to raise a child as much as she wants to fuss over a doll. This belief of mine is reinforced when Elly, who's thought-bubbling in fairly awkward English in her own right, frets that Lizzie is not speaking normal English while at the same time making her sit on Momma's wap as she brussa hair.

The reason that this is a problem is that most parents tend to speak in a sing-songy tone of voice as they enunciate very carefully and streeeeeeeeeeeetch out their vowel sounds when talking to toddlers so that they might pick up the language. Not Elly. Elly tends to speak to her children in what she and Lynn assume to be the native language of infants and what normal people call stupid gibberish designed to disrupt and delay normal language acquisition so that Elly can have her little BAYBEE just that much longer. Of course, once a child turns into a teenager, Elly loses interest and the kid can start talking like everyone else she knows.
Tags: elly versus the real world, nizzabeff, picky-face martian princess creature

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