The Word Factory

Roman can’t read or write (yet!), but he is the best Spoken Mad Lib contributor our family has ever seen. No matter whether you are looking for verbs, nouns, adjectives- or even his input- he’s at the ready to jump into any conversation with helpful suggestions as soon as there is any pause long enough for him to insinuate himself.

The other day, we were in the car in Portland, and Jeff recognized a man walking across the street. Cue the flashback…

     Jeff: Oh- I know that guy. He used to work at…

     Roman: (totally matter of fact) Jenson’s Butt Plumes.           

     Me: Oh yes, that’s a very fine establishment. How many years have the Jensons run their Butt Pluming business *chuckles,* Jeff?

     Jeff: Oh- years and years. I think that is Atticus Jenson the 4th *laughs,* actually. His Great-great-grandfather started the Butt Plume company *hee hee hee!* in [dramatic pause] Woonsocket *gafaw!* back at the turn of the century.

     Kelley: Yes- I heard about that. There was a big explosion at the Butt Plume factory *snickers* back in the 50s, too much… gas! *cackles, holds belly* Then they moved to Portland, where they have really set the standard in Butt Plume technology *giggles.*

     Jeff: Butt Pluming *snork!* can be a dangerous and smelly business indeed!

And… scene.

At other times, Roman spouts out poetic lines such as “she saw giant stairs locking,” personifications like “the zipper is lying awake on the floor,” desperate statements like “I got pennies in my dimes!,” unlikely ones like “I stole a deer!,” or gritty ones like “I gotta spark in my underpants!” Not sure what that last one is about…

You’ll be getting in the car to drive to the grocery store, and he’ll call after you from the house with a “text me later!,” which is funny because he has no device, and couldn’t read it anyway. And one day, Romi heard me lamenting his recent accelerated use of cusswords to Jeff, to which he replied: “my vocabulary smells like sausage!” If the casing fits…

He merges words indiscriminately, coming up with such gems as “failmily,” “neighbots,” “chicken mittens,” “funkcious!,” “bone arrow,” and “lame chop!” He calls Altoids “cements.” And he will cut you down with a well placed “your morals have stink underwear on them!,” “thanks for the help, rocket genius,” “your brain stinks,” or a “shut your face off!

This morning, while waiting for the summer school bus, he came up with a killer new breakfast food: cat litter cereal. But don’t tell anyone- we’re gonna take our idea to Kellogg’s and mint up some deodorized cash.


PS- the video is from a few years ago, of 8-year old, word lovin' Romi.

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