For those who are unfamilar with Monty Python’s Flying Circus and the truly excellent film, The Holy Grail, the title above is probably foxing you a little bit.

Just to fill you in, the knights who say ‘NI’ are precisely that – armoured and very silly knights who shout ‘NI! NI!’ a lot. They look like this:

I think DB2 might be an honorary Knight Who Says Ni. As this is pretty much the only word he says at the moment, and he likes to say it loudly. And often.

I was unperterbed initially. After all, DB2 has proved himself time and time again to be a little, shall we say…unusual. In many ways. However, when the health visitor came over recently to check his progress, she asked a few questions that worried me a little bit.

HV: Does he talk yet?

Me: Er…no. Not really.

HV: Not really? So, is he saying words like Dadda?

Me: Erm, nope, he just says ‘ni’.

HV: Mama?

Me: No. Just ‘ni’.

HV: Does he babble meaningfully?

Me: Well, yes, if you mean, by babbling, that he says ‘ni’ a lot.

This apparently is not good for a 15 month old. Apparently, or so the health visitor implied, by her arched eyebrows and slightly puckered mouth, that he perhaps should be saying a wee bit more than…er…’ni’.

However, in DB2’s defence, he is ever so good at using the word ‘ni’ to convey all sorts of different things, just by varying the intonation and facial expression. A cross face and a shouted ‘ni’, for example, generally means he’s peed off about something and/ or wants something. An excited expression and a loud, jolly ‘ni!’ indicates pleasure in an activity or item. A bellowed ‘NI! NI!’ indicates that he wants you to give him something, generally food, NOW. So I figure, if he had been born in China, or Cambodia, or somewhere where intonation is terribly important in language, he’d probably be considered streets ahead, and well advanced for his age.

Sadly for DB2, he’s born in a country where children are expected by health visitors to be able to recite the Oxford Dictionary by their third birthday.

No, I’m giving a wrong impression here. The Health visitor was very nice, and I guess she just has to ask the questions, to ensure I’m not a child abuser or something. However, I can assure her, and indeed anyone else, that the only abuse going on here is the abuse my ear drums are taking at the continual buffalo bellowings of NI! NI! in my ear hole, morning, noon and night.

I bid you adieu. And of course, NI!

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