Tim Walker’s Kids

If baby sheep are called lambs and baby cattle are calves, if baby horses are called foals and baby cats are kittens, if baby dogs are pups and a doe is a deer a baby deer, what are we supposed to call a baby goat?

Pretty sure a baby goat is a kid, son.

That can’t be right, thought a ‘kid’ was what you called a baby…?

That is correct, it is what you call a baby goat.

Right, a baby goat is called, what?

A kid.

Yeah, so what’s a kid goat?

A baby.

Right, yes, alright, so what is a baby goat called then?

For the record, technically, a baby person is called a child, not a kid.

What, you mean when parents talk about their ‘kids’, they’re actually talking about goats?

Yeah, probably not, no.

So why do people call their children ‘kids’?

Good question, I’ll check into that…

Did you check?

Still checking.

Which would make you a chequer.

I am a little square, yes – have been that way since I was a kid.

Yeah, about that…?

Well, according to my infinitely knowledgeable Collins dictionary, a ‘kid’ is a baby goat.

Interesting, dictionary – why didn’t you just ask Google?

I don’t ask Google, as I have found that much of the so-called factual content on Google is written by people who in fact have no idea about the topic at hand and are simply rewriting an existing ‘factual’ article to produce words known as ‘web-filler’.

People like you, you mean?

In fairness, all my work is one hundred percent original, thank you very much.

No, I was talking about years ago, when you were a copywriter – isn’t that what you did?

Oh, yes, right, yes, that is the modern definition of copywriting – effectively copying somebody else’s writing for another source.

You never copied anything about baby goats then?

Ah, right, not the colloquial definition of ‘kid’ anyway, no, although according to Collin, the term ‘kid’ meaning ‘child’ was first recognised in the nineteenth century but, other than to say, ‘a kid is a baby goat and the word comes from Scandinavian origin’, he was unable to tell me much more than that.

You should ask Google then.


Did you ask?


What did he say?

Confirmed, ‘kid’ meaning ‘child’ recognised in eighteen forty, which does constitute the nineteenth century –

Why do you do that?

Do what?

Write the whole number like that…?

Oh, it’s because technically we’re speaking and people don’t speak numbers, they speak words.

Makes sense, I suppose – what else did Google say?

Yes, Scandinavian origin, yes, it’s all basically the same, and no one appears to know the term’s colloquial origin.

‘Colloquial’, meaning slang, like, for ‘child’?

That is correct.

Wonder what Google says about ‘colloquial’…?

You are aware there are other search engines besides Google?

Yes, but why would anyone want to upgrade to an inferior counterpart?

I’ve taught you well, kid.

Yeah, so why not ‘lamb’, ‘pup’, ‘cub’ or something, instead, why a goat – why ‘kid’?

Would you prefer I referred to you as ‘lamb’?

Not so much, I’d rather be ‘shitkicker’ – are they the baby of something?

Gee, I don’t know, I guess, I mean, it might be a, what, the incontinent hermaphrodite offspring of a, I don’t know, zebu…?

Nah, what about the babies of crocodiles – what are they called?

Really, hah, you want to be called a ‘hatchling’?

Well, suppose, it’s still better than ‘pup’, or, what’s a baby eel called?

An ‘elver’.

Yeah, still better than an elf.

A kid elf, you mean.

Thought a kid elf would be an ‘elfling’, or something like that.

You know, I think a baby elf is just called a ‘baby elf’ – hard to say, given their nonexistence.

Cool story … What’s a baby ox called?

Pretty sure it’s a calf.

Thought that was a baby cow.

It is, they’re basically the same beast.

So what’s a baby buffalo?

I guess that would also be a calf – zebu too.

Even a hermaphrodite one?

I don’t see it should make a difference, particularly in this modern era, it’s still a calf.

Alright, what’s a baby whale then?

Are you trying to be clever?

I don’t need to try.

A baby whale, kid, is also a calf.

So why don’t they call kids that, instead – calves?

Couldn’t tell you, children have just always been ‘kids’.

No kidding, so what are baby goats called again?

Kids, I don’t know.



Article by Tim Walker

Edited by Noah I Deer

Photography by Bay B Animal





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