I woke up this morning to the sounds of "UH-oh!" coming from Alex's room. This has become his latest catch-all word. He does use it in the "appropriate" context, such as when he spills food or milk and needs to clean it up. But he uses it much more often--most cutely when he wakes up in the morning or from a nap. He'll just stand in his crib and say "UH-oh!" over and over and over until we come get him. It may be because he's thrown his pacifier out of his crib in protest, and he's saying "UH-oh!" because it's on the floor. Maybe not, though. He also just sorta says it when he's run out of other words.
I fear he picked the word up from his favorite TV show, The Teletubbies. He did seem to learn "Bye-bye" from them, and it wouldn't surprise me if this word also came from them. Their version doesn't quite sound like Alex's; it's more like "Eh-OH" with the emphasis on the second syllable. I think "Eh-OH" is a Teletubbized version of "Hello." (Most of what the Teletubbies say turns out to be baby-talk versions of real words. I only realized this when we watched it once with closed captioning on, and I discovered that what I thought was incomprehensible babble actually comprised real words!)
Some aspects of the show freak me out (the robotic "Time for Teletubbies Time for Teletubbies Time for Teletubbies" chant; the creepy pinwheel; Tinky Winky's voice). But the simple words, shapes, and slow pace of the show make it really captivating for Alex. I can't deny that the producers definitely "get" the infant mentality.
Yeah, I know infants aren't supposed to watch TV. Mine does. UH-oh!