Later, Gator

“See you later, alligator!”

“See mph ack ter, ator!

Little Andy was only beginning to talk when I started teaching him this, and he faked it beautifully. When he was two, he finally got it. “Later, gator!”

I threw in “After a while, crocodile!”

He looked at me puzzled. Then, “Yammer, yammer ile, ock odile!”

Andy and his family moved away before he could perfect this. Now he’s a full-fledged kid, living and working on a ranch.

The experience answered a question I’d had since I was little Andy’s age. Why do grownups do this? What’s the point?

It’s cute. You teach little kids tricks like that, you are amused by their attempts and happy at their success. It’s one of those little things in life that makes the day just a little better.

Later, gator.

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