Monday, April 10, 2006

That’s AmoNe!

This weekend Milo’s dad and I celebrated our 6th anniversary*! When we started dating, I remember talking about how I felt allergic to loving pet names couples tend to give each other, like the honey, sweety, baby that are so popular among Americans. The French are somewhat poetic and figurative (cherie or darling, ma biche which means my hind, etc). Italians tend to be more on the creative side, I do know people who call each other publicly pulcione /pulciona (literally “my big flea” ?!?!). The most common would simply be amore.

So we began indeed calling each other ‘amore’, which was originally meant with a clear aura of irony. The days, months, years passed and it became exactly what I was afraid of, an affectionate alternative to the first name, which was loosing its meaning by the minute due to the excessive usage, just like a fabric loosing color after having been washed too many times.

But a funky turn to the issue has brought our attention to it, lately: our son Milo has noticed it, and has started to use it as well as a substitute for calling out Mamma or Papa! As he cannot roll the 'r' yet, he says “amone.”

And so, we were cracking up the other day when we entered the apartment coming back from running errands and he called out: "Amooooone!", as his dad does when he comes home!

I honestly felt relieved: at least all irony has not been lost!

* If you are curious to know how an Italian chick ended up in Paris with a Belgianite, check out the story “Love-struck at the technical desk: the sparkle of a euro-romance” I wrote for the BBFN section entitled “How Me Met” last month!


Alice in Austria said...

That is sooo cute!!! :) AmoNe!! ;)

Thanks for the link to those stories! I didn't know they were posted online in the first place! I love your story. It is so optimistic and encouraging in the face of so many challenges!

If I may ask - this is a topic which seriously interests me - what do you think lead the success of your relationship? Most long distance relationships usually fail. I've had my share of long-distance failures as well before I met dh - which was also a long-distance relationship, but which finally worked out! We think it is because we put our relationship as absolute priority number one, and not jobs/studies, and because we were both very flexible about where we live, as long as we can be together.... I am curious whether it was the same for other people?

I guess what I am asking for here is if you were to give advice to a couple in a long-distance relationship, what would it be? ;)

giovanni said...

What a nice love story! I realise again that the back of a person is very important -- my wife fell in love with me seeing me skating in front of her. I also realise once again how important negative events are: they can create wonderful positive events! Congratulations! And congratulations to your son who brought back the irony in amore, the routine word, not the other one. Do you remember Massimo Troisi's face when he heared Pablo Neruda say "mi amor" in Il Postino?

Lilian said...

LOVELY post! (and great story - I read it over there in the BBFN site).

We used to call each other amore (yes, in Italian) a lot, but the one we've used more often these past 16 years is "chou-chou" (or "choux-choux"?) - which is quite funny in Brazil because there it's the same word (chuchu) for a green vegetable that some people don't like much (here in the U.S. it's rare to find this vegetable and they use the Spanish name - chayote).

Anyway, April 9, that's nice, as you probably know from my recent post, our anniversary is April 7 (though we met on March 30). And we've been together exactly ten years more than you! It's truly hilarious that Milo's calling you guys Amone!!

Clo said...

Thanks for the sweet comments!

Alice, you pose a very interesting question. Honestly, I think that there is a big role that chance plays in these situation. And i like to think that love wins all, after all:mif it's true love, than any sacrifice is worth it. I don't think there is any specific formula that can guaratee the success of a long distance relationship, like any relationships it has its unique cardinal points and balances...

Giovanni, yopur comment reminds me of something I just read in the book "The Rule of Four", where the narrator remembers how his father used to never comb his hair in the back of his head because he would not see it, and so did not mind how it looked!

Lilian, love and spring go wonderfully together, don't they? I like the numeric coincidences! April 9 also happens to be the wedding anniversary of my man's parents, and his father celebrate his birthday on the same day as my sister...bizarre!

Guillaume said...


juste a question about "amone". Does your son (and italian children in general) allways substitute "r" with "n" or other sounds? Mine rather pronounce the italian "r" as /l/, "mangiale" for example, except in some words, with /R/, the r moscia (French r), in "caRello" for example. That makes laugh my wife as he sounds as a chinese speaking Italian.

My own /r/ is quite correct but still not perfect (I'm French native speaker) and may be a bit too closer to /l/.

With my wife we're calling each other "Pupo" and "Pupa" (in italian). Of course our son became "Pupetto"! He also often call me "Pupo" which is quite funny.


Clo said...

Salut Guillaume, how funny!
The "r" is definitely tough, even for Italian native kids. I don't think the way they substitute it with another letter is dictated by anything in particular. Milo for instance simply skips it when it's a t the beginning of the word (osso for Rosso, uota for ruota etc.)He also uses the "l" in aereo (aelelo, he says, and aelelopolto for aeroporto). It might take another year and he might end up having a soft French accent and keepijng the French "r", as it seems to be frequently the case. I have been trying to investigate this accent development for a qhile now with experts, but I don't seem to find a scientific explanation, yet. Thanks for commenting!

Juliet said...

That is truly adorable! Made me smile. :-)
By the way, I finally have my own biligual child story!!! I will post it either tonight or tomorrow morning.

Eddie Lin said...


your love story is definitely a woody allen romantic comedy. that's a compliment since i'm a big woody allen fan.

my and diane's petname for each other is poop, pooper and plops, sometimes plopper. i know, i know, we both need to see a psychologist about this.

thanks for this easter gift!