It’s what’s important

Sometime within the last week or two, the Seed allegedly acquired some degree of hearing. I say some degree, because this is just the approximate point when babies start reacting to noises in ways that can be detected. Maybe they had awareness without response previously, it’s hard(er) to tell. However, the ear structures won’t be entirely developed for another couple of months, so it’s somewhat questionable how ready the Seed is to hear my fatherly pronouncements. As you can imagine, I’m eager to extend as much as possible the duration of the period between when my offspring can first hear my voice and the moment when they decide everything I say is bullshit. But the uncertainty over to what extent I’m audible, much less intelligible, leaves me with a modicum of trepidation over the affair. Granted, I’ve spent a significant chunk of my professional life talking to people whose ear structures evidently hadn’t entirely developed either, but at least I knew that going in, so I knew where I stood.

So apart from the occasional moment of passing a bit of clever rhetoric at Beth’s midsection, I’m currently sticking a bit more towards communicating via patting her belly. That’s probably a better medium anyway for communicating the urgent survival skills it will need for its future, namely: factorization, divisibility, and prime numbers. It goes a bit like this:

Devin’s hand: patpat
Devin’s hand: patpatpat
Devin’s hand: patpatpatpatpat
Devin’s hand: patpatpatpatpatpatpat
Devin’s hand: patpatpatpatpatpatpatpatpatpatpat


Devin’s hand: patpatpatpatpatpatpatpat
Devin’s hand: patpatpatpat (pause) patpat


Devin’s hand: patpat (pause) patpatpatpatpatpatpatpat
Devin’s hand: patpatpatpatpatatpatpatpatpatpat-
Beth: Ow, stop that.

We’ve also had the Baby Starts Moving week (moving in a way Beth can feel, I mean). There was a bit last week, but it’s been the big deal of this one. After dinner this evening Beth was reporting that if she poked herself in the proper spot, the baby would wiggle. It was difficult to reproduce, though. I tried poking out prime numbers, of course:

Devin: pokepoke
Devin: pokepoke-
Beth: Ow. Not like that, like this (demonstrating)
Devin (like that): poke-
Beth: Ow.
Devin (differently): pokepokepoke
Beth: Ow, stop that.

The sequence was blown by that point, and even if the Seed had been inclined to wiggle out its answer I don’t know how I could have done the grading. The conceptual range is limited, too; I’m not sure how I’m going to communicate the concept of zero through a uterine wall.

– Devin


  1. mordwen said,

    September 29, 2008 at 4:07 am

    I’ve meant to tell you this every single post you’ve written, Devin. I love your work. Your writing is fabulous, you make me laugh out loud and I love your attitude.

    I look forward to many, many more entries.

    So glad you two are breeding, if only because it’s meant you’re blogging.

  2. James said,

    September 29, 2008 at 9:38 am

    This child is already so tuned into the universe that its connection is the “source” of prime. It is us that have to re-evaluate our language to even begin to interpret this mystery.

    And just think, eventually the child (and all of us) will have to unlearn every thing to return to that Source.

    And about the bullshit, you can bank on its uterine knowledge to
    figure it out…

    I am so very happy for you…

  3. thecarrawayseed said,

    September 29, 2008 at 10:25 am

    It’s true that this uterus (or at least its possessor) comes with a pretty finely tuned bullshit detector. :)

  4. Adam said,

    September 29, 2008 at 4:20 pm

    Remember, fetii can’t exactly get leverage at this stage. And by the time they can, they have very well-formed ideas about what jerks their parents are. “I’m going to drain your bank account!” was the first telepathic message we received from our offspring. Damn – he was right!

    So, focus on the telepathy. Devin, if you find yourself fixated with breasts following the birth, you’re either being mind-controlled, or you’re just reliving your own hungry infancy. Or you like porn. Whatever.

  5. Tara said,

    October 9, 2008 at 4:13 pm

    It’s like Devin and Seed’s own personal Morse code. Via Beth, who reacted just as I thought she would :)

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