Monday, September 26, 2011


For years msk  has said leet-deet. Actually he says "leet-deet, leet-deet, leet-deet, leet-deet, leet-deet, leet-deet, leet-deet, leet-deet." It's often one of those stand in phrases that mean something in msk-code. I've interpreted it as frustration, if I pay attention at all. If he's not saying it loud, it might just be a noise he likes to make.

I never really thought a whole lot more about decoding it because when msk is in the midst of being frustrated, asking a lot of verbal questions is a bad idea. Generally, verbal communication is frustrating for msk, and questions are more like interrogations (under the bright light in the police station) in his mind.

So, leet-deet, was just one of those echolalic phrases that sometimes indicated distress and dealing with msk's  distress is usally about taking a deep breath, radiating a sense of calm and if at all possible removing the object of frustration with little or no talking.

Sometimes though, I just have a hard time reaching that place of calm. Lately, college applications and financial worries related to college choices, have shortened my patience. On Saturday I was driving with msk  and he was verbally repeating some sort of you tube clip or computer game. I said something meaningless to him out loud (something on the order of "how's it going?"). Small talk is never msk's  forte and when he's in the middle of a recitation, this type of distraction forces him to stop recreating what's playing back in his mind, make the obligatory, but pointless, "I'M DOING OK, MOM." Then there's my obligatory "It's OK for people to talk to you, so don't yell at me please." I think he said he had to start over and I said something about his self-talking was getting on my nerves. Probably not the high-point of my parenting empathy and understanding.

Anyway, there was a level of frustration in the car and silence as I drove. Then I heard a frustrated "LEET-DEET, LEET-DEET, LEET-DEET" at the same time I noticed that my turn signal was stuck on after I had switched lanes. It finally clicked. The noise of the turn signal was driving him crazy."Leet-Deet." means stop that annoying noise. The rhythm, the tone, and the emphasis were all exactly the same tone as my car.

Mystery solved.

1 comment:

  1. Just to let you know-I read all your posts.I am always interested in your thoughts and perspectives but often don't have a snappy comeback so I don't. I tell you this to encourage you to keep writing. I thought Leet-Deet might be "delete." :-)


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