Friday, October 19, 2012

Ooday ooya eekspay igpay attinlay?/first published in The Cheraw Chronicle


As most of you who read my articles and my blog "Holding Patterns" (http://www.sandimcbride.blogspot.com/) know, I grew up spending every summer with my grandparents.  It was our grandmother (Mammy) who taught us the fun stuff of life along with work ethics.  As a teacher she encouraged us to learn new things and practiced what she preached.  On stormy days when we kids were stuck inside the house, she taught us to make paper mache items and tents from chairs and sheets where we could sit inside reading or telling stories of adventure.  It was during just such a storm that she first introduced us to a new and exciting world of linguistics that is now a nearly lost art.  It is called Pig Latin. 
We were sitting around the kitchen table, having given up our chair tents for notebook paper and pencils.  I don't know why we loved that combo, but we did and often spent what little money we had on them.  Mammy was busy making iced tea and sudddenly  asked us (sister Toni and me) if we knew how to speak Pig Latin.  We told her no but our curiosity was piqued, and she promised to teach us.  We spent the next hour learning the trick of it then practicing the language.  The key to the whole thing lies in the title above.  Study how the first letter of the word is moved to the end as ood then then aye is added...do is now ooday.  The same with you...ooyae.  Now say speak...eekspay...and pig...igpay...now latin...attinlay.  Sort of like the riddle songs of the 60's, you now have a language to speak when you don't want your parents to know what you are saying.  Toni and I being quick studies were soon chatting away like no body's business.  We can still do it.
I remember when I took my kids to see the movie Goonies.  At some point during the movie the kids were speaking in pig latin and I started to laugh as I translated for my boys.  They looked at me in awe and demanded to be taught to speak this cool "new" language.  Thinking back to those days of their childhood  I find myself  longing for the time when I was the coolest mom in the theater...ouldnway ooyae?

16 comments:

the fly in the web said...

That's super!

Gill - That British Woman said...

I remember makes tents from blankets and chairs and even remember showing our kids to do that.

Gill

Debbie Lo said...

I would have loved to seen the looks on your kids' faces when they looked at you with such awe. LOL My mom, grandma, and us 4 kids loved to speak pig Latin when were kids too. We also thought it was just the coolest of cool languages.

You just brought back some wonderful memories for me too, Sandi. Thank you! :-)

Judy ~ My Front Porch said...

Now that it going way back...to a language I had totally forgotten about. Thanks for the reminder...of a very cool tongue.

Brian Miller said...

smiles...it is pretty cool...and i cant remember if i taught my boys pig latin...might have to do that today.....

Lee said...

Yes I would. And I remember my Grandmother and I reading the funny pages together, teaching me my math with dominoes and cooking, and also learning how to sew on her sewing machine by making clothes for my Barbie doll. Those were such fun times, the BEST!

Love,
Lee

Vee said...

And I still have no idea what you're saying. Did you ask "wouldn't you?" Maybe? It'd take me a month. Do your sons speak the language now?

Finding Pam said...

You really brought back some wonderful memories of our childhood. We did the same thing.

cheshire wife said...

It is all Double Dutch to me!

Merisi said...

Oh yes, I can see how your kids were in awe of your language skills! ;-)

Sandi,
I am actually coming down to SC - please drop me a mail and I get back to you! Right now I am in TN.
Cheers,
Merisi

Shadow said...

oh man, i remember this, but i have never never managed to master it... what a nice memory you have there!

Donna said...

I remember it but could NEVER get the hang of it!!Hahaaa
hughugs

Carver said...

Fun memories. We used to enjoy pig latin when I was a child.

i beati said...

5 friends died the past 2 weeks one very close and I find myself longin g to go back where did that time go surely this is a time machine !!

NitWit1 said...

I forgot all about pig latin but remember a short period of time my siblings and I fooled around with it.

We played a lot of board games, too. Those were the best days.

Hilary said...

A friend and I spoke a somewhat different Pig Latin. It worked around every syllable adding a "eeaz" sounds to each one of them. We spoke it very quickly (I still can) and others truly thought we were making words up but we knew exactly what the other was saying. Such fun. Your opening title would read as follows:

Deazoo yeazoo speazeak Piazig Leazatiazin?

Being a kid was fun. Thanks for the memory.

Heazileazareazy