There are some words in the English language that have a tendency to be over-used. Used to the point of extreme annoyance by anyone within hearing distance. The 80's gifted us with so many examples of these words, by the way. And California. (Well, surfers; but have you ever seen a surfer in Idaho? No? Me either.) One of these marvelous words is Dude.
I will be the first to admit to my frequent use of this word. Seriously. I have a sad tendency to call just about everyone Dude at some point. Notice I say "just about" everyone. Obviously, there are some exceptions. For instance, I wouldn't call my boss (should I ever be fortunate enough to have one of those again) Dude. I don't believe I've ever called a religious leader Dude. And I've certainly never called my mother Dude.
Apparently, my youngest child has no such boundaries.
I didn't think it was possible for someone to use that word more than I do, but Bug's got me beat. Everyone is Dude. And I mean EVERYONE. There have been several instances where he catches himself in the middle of explaining something to me, and he hears himself call me Dude. The first time he did this was so funny that I almost think it's more of a running joke between us now. He had been trying to tell me something, and said ".... and then, Dude! **pause** Wait. Did I just call you Dude??" "Um, yeah. I think you did." "Oops. Sorry." We laughed for a solid ten minutes, and then we'd catch ourselves giggling just a bit over it for the next hour.
I could blame his use of that word on the single scene of Tropic Thunder that he's seen (we won't watch that movie here, but the clip shown on the movie channels is always the same one); you know the one ".... I'm the dude disguised as the dude disguised as another dude....". Or I could blame it on some weird anomaly that makes all boys with shaggy blond hair and blue eyes talk like little surfer guys. I refuse to blame it on my constant use of the word. Oh, heaven's no! How could it be my fault? It's not like he's picked up any of my other habits! In the end, it doesn't really matter where he picked it up, though, does it?
I'm not going to really worry about it unless I hear him say something about "that Pope dude".