Neh. Neh. NEHHH!!!
That means "I'm hungry. I'm hungry. HEY, I'M HUNGRY!" in newborn.

That's according to Priscilla Dunstan, a woman who believes she's cracked the code of infants up to 3 months old.

Dunstan, an Australian mom who recently described her findings on "The Oprah Winfrey Show," has come up with a five-word blueprint for what the world's little tykes are trying to tell their folks. Her theory is that all babies have the same physical needs - hunger, sleep, relief of discomfort, relief from gas - so their bodies produce the same sounds, or words, based on those needs.

For example, the "neh" sound is made when a baby positions its mouth to suck, with its tongue on the roof of its mouth - all babies eat the same way - and then starts its pre-cry noise.

"Owh," a sound made when a baby yawns, means "I'm sleepy." If mom doesn't respond on cue, the little bundle of joy starts to wail at a volume that means business.

Dunstan has isolated five baby words common to all newborns, but only until they're 3 months old. After that, if the baby's demands aren't being met, it stops trying to communicate in this way. Makes sense; why continue to do something that doesn't work? A 3-month-old wasn't born yesterday.

Of course, moms have bragged about having a mind-meld with their newborns ever since they started finding above-average characteristics in their children; the thought of having an intuitive connection is so much more magical than the idea that some moms are just good listeners.

Moreover, cynics have already pooh-poohed the idea on Wikipedia because Dunstan's field research wasn't very scientific; all she did was listen to scores of random babies and their moms. And many a snake-oil salesman has proven that an old idea wrapped in new bunting can make ripping off sleep-deprived parents as easy as taking candy from you-know-who.

But let's suspend disbelief for a minute and accept the possibility that Dunstan is on to something. Isn't the idea of a universal baby code amazing? What an incredible tool for parents all over the world.

Wouldn't this information be invaluable to first-time dads checking that diaper repeatedly or new moms who whip out the formula at every whimper when all the kid really wants is a snuggle, a little down time in the rocking chair and a lullaby?

Couldn't something like this teeny idea change the world?

That should speak to our multitasking inner cynic as it impatiently cradles Baby New Year 2007 while it YouTubes Saddam Hussein's execution and watches Donald Trump and Rosie O'Donnell kick each other in the throat. If nothing else, stuff like this indicates that even in this era of in-vitro gone wild and umbilical cord blood banks, man still has a lot to learn about itself.

It should give us hope for the future, secure in the knowledge that with all the scary and stupid things the human race has seen in its days on this big bad world, we don't know everything yet.

And it should serve as a wake-up spank on the collective bottom to those who do think we know it all. It's not as if guys like Galileo and Charles Darwin woke up while we were snoozing and left us nothing but empty Evenflo bottles. If we're open to the possibilities, surely there are big discoveries and cage-rattling theories about the human condition to which we can still give light.

There's a lot we can't do anything about. But we can still change our world, if we're hungry enough.

Did someone say, "Neh"?


What Baby is saying Neh: 'I'm hungry.'
Owh: 'I'm sleepy.'

Heh: 'I'm experiencing discomfort.'

Eair: 'I have lower gas.'

Eh: 'I need to burp.'