Wednesday, July 23, 2014 Tammuz 25, 5774
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The Painful Noises of Parenting

Monday, February 24, 2014
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When my sister and I were around 10 and 7 — the same ages my boys are now — we saw the animated feature Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King. The movie has many highlights, but one of the gems is the marching song that the Orcs sing as they stomp through Mordor. It's titled, "Where There's a Whip, There's a Way."

My sister and I sure did love to sing this repetetive and unpleasant tune. One 400th time we were singing it was in the car, with my stepfather and mother in the front seats. My stepfather asked us to please stop. Well, we thought we sounded just like the Orcs. So we kept going. He asked us to stop again. Things escalated until finally he pulled the car over, unloaded us on the sidewalk, and drove off. 

He quickly came back for us, but rest assured: We stopped singing after that. 

Still, we couldn't possibly comprehend why he got so angry. We totally nailed it.

Now that I am a parent, I have this to say to my stepfather: Sorry, man. We deserved it. 

Because there are so many noises that tempt me to leave my kids on the side of the road. They aren't singing "Where There's A Whip," but they are doing this:

  • Dinging the spoon on the inside of the cereal bowl for the entire duration of breakfast.
  • Dropping wooden nunchucks on the floor. A lot.  
  • Opening and closing their light sabers. Every 17 seconds. 
  • Bouncing the basketball on the bedroom floor, twanging it through the hoop and smacking it to the floor again. And again. For eternity. 
  • Same goes for the lacrosse ball: Floor, floor, wall. Floor, floor, wall. Floor, floor, wall. For eternity.
  • Angry stompy feet slamming up the stairs.
  • Duck walk slappy feet smacking on the sidewalk. (Why?)
  • Kicking the side of the counter.
  • Slurping soup.
  • Slurping orange juice.
  • Slurping water.
  • Slurping air.
  • Howling a mezzo-soprano aria of "no!"
  • Swiveling their chairs. 
  • Singing songs that are not real songs and have no actual words or meaning.
  • Saying "Good morning!" like the lead character in the unwatchable Cartoon Network show Uncle Grandpa. I have SO deleted every episode of that chazzerai from the DVR.
  • Shouting "EZ-RA!"
  • Shouting "Max-ON!"
  • Playing video games without turning the sound off. 
  • Talking in baby talk. 
  • Whistling.
  • Calling my name. "Mom. Mom. Mom. Mom. Mom. MOM! MOM! MOM! MOM! MOMMY! MOM! MOMMY! MOM! MOM! MOMMY! MOM! MOM! MOM? MOM? MOM? MOM? MAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHMMMMMMMMM!"

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