OK, seriously. What is up with middle-aged women talking baby talk? I am closing in on 45 years old, I understand grown-up language perfectly well. In fact, I prefer it. Several of my clients, however, seem to think that talking to me in their best Tweety Bird voices will somehow magically earn them extended patience and love.
Not likely. In fact, I seriously want to slap about 12 of my clients based entirely on their use of words like, “pwetty,” “toot” (used instead of “cute”), and “I wone woe” to convey some version of “I don’t know” when I ask what color they want.
It’s out of hand. Over the many years that I have been doing nails, I have certainly met my share of baby-talkers. In fact, I once had a client who spoke Tweety Bird so fluently that we just referred to her as “Baby Talk Lady.” The woman was in her 60s for crying out loud! In the two years she came to me, I don’t recall ever once hearing her speak like a grown up. It drove me insane until I finally decided to treat her like she was mentally handicapped. (She was not.)
That woman really stands out in my mind as an extreme example of the baby talk phenomenon, but what’s with my part time Tweety Birds that I have now? These are not women with small children or grandchildren in their homes. They are not women who work with infants. There’s no excuse, and I can’t believe that there are that many grown@$$ women who seriously think that talking like they’re 2 years old is going to win them some sort of special treatment.
I don’t even put up with it from 2-years-olds — just ask my younger niece. OK, she probably doesn’t remember when she went through that regression period with her speech and finally got wise to the fact that auntie Maggie does not think you’re cute if you refuse to communicate clearly when it’s well established that you can.
As for the clients? I’m not sure what to do yet. It might come down to a reminder that I don’t allow children in the salon and that includes people who insist on acting like children.
For reprint and licensing requests for this article, Click here.