Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Baby talk

Two French babies once met and talked to eachother in a nursery school. They were aged 2 and 3.

The conversation was (accidentaly) recorded and put down on paper on the 6th of November, year 1975, for a linguistic study. Here is the transcription:

- BAjour
- Bojour
- Koto joujou vek moi?
- Bli pa moi bé toi vo pas
- ta ka pa'tir et nir pluta
- non dé pa daco'
- pAske tapeu?
- gna pot'kjoi di nim potkoi
- alo vé apué ladam éva te puni
- azait heu
- zi; orvoar alo
- arvoar

The two babies survived another 32 years and an extraordinary twist of fate made them meet again in a resting room of Wunderman Interactive France. And even more extraordinarily than that, they had the exact same conversation they had 32 years ago. It was also recorded and here is the transcription:

- Bonjour.
- Bonjour.
- Tiens, il faudra que je revienne vers toi pour acter le budget Nestlé.
- Sur du one-to-one?
- C'est le mieux je pense; on reste sur une approche motivationnelle comme ça.
- Je suis à fond avec toi là-dessus, ça réduira le gap.
- T'as trouvé un event impactant pour la promo?
- Il faut que je check avec le back-office. C'est eux qui pilotent le deal.
- Et l'analyse contextuelle? il paraît qu'on est sur du long-terme...
- Je crois qu'il faut vraiment qu'ils arrêtent de post-rationnaliser, au market.
- Bon , et bien j'attends ton retour.
- Idem.

A thousand French-speaking linguists gathered in Geneva a few days ago for a round table to try and sort out what the hell this conversation could mean. They listened to it again and again, in both the baby and grown-up versions. When I last heard, they just agreed on the fact that the first two lines meant "Hello".

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1 comment:

Xavier said...

Excellent!!! But I guess some other words like "Benchmark", "Brainstorming", "Turnover" event "Fuck" are missing... Don't you think??? ;-)