Can You Hear Me?

The kids have been playing a game lately which involves plenty of shouting and ridiculous child-logic. I don’t know that it’s a game, so much as it is a way to drive me nuts. Of course, finding new and innovative ways of driving their poor tatte nuts can be a game, in and of itself.

I’m quite convinced, actually, that after they’re tucked, warm in their beds for the night, stories having been read, and cheeks having been kissed, they put their hands behind their heads, the look of smug, self-satisfaction plastered across their little faces. They exhale slowly, and exclaim “A job well done, Tevye(or Saarah… especially Saarah), very well done, indeed”. They then drift off to dreamland, thinking up ways to further their agenda of putting me in the Nut House before my next birthday.

This picture really proves my point. Look at the expression on Saarah’s face. If that doesn’t say “I think we’ve almost done it, Tevye! Just a little more and he’ll be committed for sure!”, I don’t know what does.

Alright, so the game is basically this: They put their fingers in their ears, and shout(obviously they’re shouting – they can’t hear themselves) “CAN YOU HEAR ME, TATTE?”

Each and every time I try to explain that by them plugging their own ears it does nothing to limit my ability to hear them shouting at me. Not only that, but since they respond, they can clearly hear me, as well! For some reason, they don’t believe me. I will then further explain that since I have heard their question, and am now trying, in vain, to answer it, this should be an indication that I can, indeed hear you.

This game will generally go on for six to seven hours each day, and I will die inside a little more with each passing round.

I suppose, of course, that I’m guilty of having exactly the same logic when I was Tevye’s age. I can very distinctly recall being worried that the sound of the toilet flushing in the middle of the night might wake my slumbering parents. Not that I had fear of getting in trouble for using the washroom in the middle of the night, just, well, I didn’t want to wake them up. Obviously, the most logical way of combating the extremely loud waste-removal sounds emanating from the bowels of the toilet, was to close the lid and sit on it, applying as much pressure as humanly possible. While this was going on, I would simultaneously plug my ears and hope for the best. Since my parents never woke up due to my flushing of the toilet, I can only assume that my method worked.

Perhaps Tevye and Saarah just aren’t applying enough pressure when plugging their ears!


89 Responses to “Can You Hear Me?”
  1. Donna says:

    I was just standing here doing a pile of ironing and wondering what your two were up to today.
    Came on the computer and had my daily laugh! AAAARRRRRRGGGGHHHHHH!!! (as Charlie Brown would say….)

  2. christine says:

    Okay, that toilet antic is hilarious. The visual of a thoughtful yet worried little kid smashing his little kid-toosh onto the toilet is too much. What a hoot.

    Also, Tevye and Saarah are just the cutest little menaces…

    • I was absolutely convinced that it would work. Actually, as I recall, even as I was performing this method of quietening the flush, I wasn’t certain that it was as effective as I’d like, though I felt I had to try. I was absolutely determined.

  3. I have two little angels of my own — a boy, 12, and a girl, 9 — so this post brought back amazing memories of their early years of early crazy-making games…

    However, you do realize they are essentially epitomizing the symbol of your future, right? They will look at you in the future, hands symbolically placed in ears, shouting “Can you hear me? I can’t hear you!” with respect to any advice you may want to provide in the future.

    There is such a push/pull when it comes to kids growing up: They want your advice and feedback, yet they don’t. I think this game is a metaphor for that.

    So, long story short: You have brilliant, artistic children who know WAY more than anyone thinks…


    • Thanks!

      I’ve known that they’re significantly more intelligent than anyone gives them credit for. Actually, sometimes I’m worried that they’re going to turn into evil geniuses and take over the world!

  4. workingmommawithababy says:

    So funny! I can’t wait til my little guy starts these types of “games”–love the line “and I will die inside a little more with each passing round.”

  5. Ah,the old pressure on the toilet lid trick. I remember believing various similar bizarrities, too. Just keep breathing; very slowly and regularly and nod your head from time to time whilst they hit it. All this too shall pass, so enjoy (said she from the other side of having to deal with this sort of carry on) – πŸ™‚

  6. The Hook says:

    Any game that drives an adult nuts is AWESOME – to a kid!

  7. I agree, I believe they work in tandem, hoping to take over the house & then beyond !

  8. lexy3587 says:

    excellent reasoning πŸ˜› My cousin used to cover his eyes when he didn’t want to be seen. He had the hardest time opening doors and navigating the house with his eyes tightly shut and a hand over them.

  9. I remember putting my fingers in my ears and screaming, asking if I was heard. It was fun…at least for me. Thanks for sharing. Connie

  10. Sounds like a fun game.
    Did you play WITH them: holding your ears closed and yell: “CAN YOU HEAR ME?”
    Maybe if you’d do that every time they do it, they could get the idea to stop the game (and not drive you insane…)
    I like their faces, though…. I remember that smug look on my boy’s face when he was a little younger, and when he succeeded to drive me nuts. πŸ™‚

  11. sallystoma says:

    Kids are great, they sound like imaginative, quirky little darlings! This also made me laugh as I used to do something similar with my parents, great post! Congratulations on being freshly pressed! – Roisin

    • They are certainly imaginative and most definitely quirky, but then again, what children aren’t. They may just be a little extra quirky, and I’m prepared to take full blame for that.

      Thanks so much for reading!

  12. This brought a smile to my day. πŸ˜€

    “Can you hear me?” lol

  13. to be determined says:

    I really like this website, who knew a teacher could be so awesome? πŸ˜‰

  14. to be determined says:

    Although, I must say, I kind of already did by the way Suzanne is in a classroom, she’s a great, hilarious, fun person! πŸ™‚

  15. I have been reading your blog and now you are super famous, mazel tov, I have a Jewish parenting blog too, come visit sometime. I sometimes scan wordpress tag “Jewish” which is how I found you originally, fyi. Enjoy the fame.

    • Thanks so much for reading, even before I was “famous”, though I don’t know how much of the “freshly pressed” effect will carry over beyond a couple of days. I will certainly enjoy it though. I’m telling myself that, to quote Ron Burgendy “I’m kind of a big deal”.

  16. kelloggs77 says:

    “…and I will die inside a little more with each passing round.” Great line, and holy cow…oh so true. I experience that feeling thanks to my kids on a daily basis for something or another. Nicely written post!!

  17. Your children are adorable,and have beautiful names. I remembering following a similar logic… although your toilet-story is especially endearing!

  18. Ahhahaha! Sounds like my two. They are crazy and love to drive me insane, too. Right now, the thing that drives me crazy is the game where they see who can be the last one to tell me goodnight, and who can scream it the loudest as I run to my own room screaming, “Goodnight! Goodnight! I SAID GOODNIGHT!!!! No more talking!” I then, feeling guilty, creep back in their room to say, “and I love you both!”/sigh

  19. KL says:

    Kids are so great! I’ll let you in on a way to confuse them hugely when they do that to you… and get a little gentle revenge. πŸ™‚

    When they shout at you with their fingers in their ears, simply look at them and mime a shrug, then touch your ears as if you can’t hear them. Lean towards them with an expression as if you are trying to hear and then silently mouth “I can’t hear you! What did you say?!”

    This will work especially well if you then proceed to shrug sadly and walk away while they are shouting. They will either love the fact that you are playing the game with them, or they’ll get bored because they are no longer driving you to distraction.

    Good luck!

    • HAHAHAHA, That’s hilarious! I will most definitely try that next time. I’ve tried pretending not to hear them, but the walking away bit, well, that’s priceless. I’m hoping they try tomorrow. Man, I’m almost excited now.

      Thanks so much for reading!

  20. Karen says:

    Okay, they are ADORABLE and while you may…”die inside a little more with each passing round” now, when they’ve grown and stopped playing the game for good you will miss the it and them, even more. Lovely, lovely post. Enjoy every second of them.

  21. I have a couple about those ages as well. I agree with the comment about “playing along.” Maybe if you shout back, “WHAT? I CAN’T HEAR YOU” enough times they’ll get sick of repeating themselves… or it’ll be a new game, whichever.

    As for me, I was convinced as a child that my parents had a light switch on the outside of the house to make it day. When they wanted me to go to bed, they’d make it night (it was on a dimmer, you know). My reasoning was that the sun went down at different times every day.

    I wonder if my kids think that…

  22. Animockery says:

    Goodness do I know what you are saying. Great post and congrats on the fresh press. Cute kids by the way.

  23. Maya Fitz says:

    Hey – congrats on FP! πŸ™‚ Love this story.

  24. Pauline says:

    This is so similar to the games mine play. Only mine usually revolve around siren noises coming from my 3 year old and then him screaming can you hear the sound my mouth is making mommy?
    Too funny!

  25. Reblogged this on simulfactotem and commented:
    It’s nice to know I’m not alone πŸ™‚

  26. I will have to try the same method with my boss next time I ask for a raise. I’ll plug my fingers firmly into my ears and just yell it. Since I can’t hear the word no with my ears plugged he will eventually give in, just to get me to stop. Surely this tactic will be so startling, he’ll have no choice but to say yes.

    Though I imagine I will leave his office with out a job and fingertips of wax.

    Great Story!

  27. ashraf says:

    cool beautiful n intelligent babies……

  28. I can totally relate to this. Great post! πŸ™‚

  29. herschelian says:

    As someone whose childrearing days are long behind her, just regard this as a practice run for when you are in your advanced senior years and EVERYONE shouts at you on the mistaken assumption that you are now deaf as a post!

    When I was a child I fondly remember my sister and I driving my dad nuts at breakfast each day, as soon as he picked up his cup of coffee or tea one of us would grab his wrist and gently shake it, saying ‘time for some palsy practice’ and followed it by saying ‘you’ll thank us when you’re old’!
    As my grandma would say – ‘you cheeky wee beesums’!

    Love your blog – congrats on FP – well deserved.

  30. Just thought I’d let you all know that I am looking after my daughter today because she’s not well; the trouble is I’m not well either. What to do…?

  31. Tara B. says:

    What a sweet story! Although, I don’t have the joy of children around yet (though we are trying), I guess I’m not missing out on the craziness aspect of it either! lol…

  32. Raaj Trambadia says:

    Okay …I didn’t laugh the whole day today …until I read this post !! Hahahah πŸ˜€ Love these lovely acts by children πŸ˜› Cheers !! Gr8 post !!

    And please check out my latest post on love –

  33. Lotus Mama says:

    Hello fellow Stay-At-Home Parent! Great post. Great kids!! Looking forward to hearing about future adventures and antics.

    • Always terrific to meet another person crazy enough to stay home with small children all day! I kid, of course.

      I’m certainly looking forward to the adventures that my children will take me on.

      Thanks for reading!

  34. debut dad says:

    LOL… what a cute story… I can relate. When I was a kid, I was always about waking my parents when I had to flush πŸ˜›

    Congrats on FP too!

    debut dad
    A first-time father’s thoughts, experiences & opinions with a few funny discoveries along the way

  35. I missed out on my nephew at this age and I regret it deeply but this reminds me that it may have been divine providence after all! Lovely post.

  36. worldnewsflash says:

    kids are really the sweetest! they do things that might be very simple but you know that those are done from the bottom of their heart. i remember the time i spent with kids. πŸ™‚

  37. Roda says:

    I refuse to listen to any complaints of 2 of the sweetest angels I see. By the way they can do no wrong for my daughter’s name is Serah too. You are lucky so enjoy the years while you have them in your present.

  38. Miriam says:

    Haha poor you. But the do look like supercute and happy children πŸ™‚

  39. Haha, your kids are adorable and that’s a funny story. I know my sister and I played loads of games to drive our parents nuts when we were younger. We probably still do that, but less intentionally these days.

  40. Love your story, I have four kids myself, and I know exactly what you’re saying. I am too, a stay at home dad with part time work as a football and basketball coach.

  41. Raaj Trambadia says:

    Haha πŸ˜€ Reading this again with my friend πŸ˜› And just to let you know, I’ve just started a new PhotoBlog!!

    Here’s the first post –

  42. candienziia says:

    I remember also closing the lid of the toilet and sitting on it thinking that would decrease the sound. In fact, I believe I’m still guilty of thinking the lid being closed will prevent it waking anyone because I definitely used to do this when I was staying at my boyfriend’s a couple months ago, as well… Perhaps it was forgetting to plug my ears that resulted in my waking him.

  43. Thank you, I have not laughed so hard in a while!! The toilet story really did it for me *ehehhe* I can just picture a little kid sitting on the toilet lid, ears plugged, hoping not to wake anyone! heheheheheh

  44. Love your post! Kids are exactly like that, I don’t think a single one hasn’t mastered the art of annoying their parents (or caregivers) in such a way. Hang in there, they outgrow it (but who wants them to?)

  45. vandysnape says:

    “close the lid and sit on it, applying as much pressure as humanly possible. ”

    I think I just woke everyone in my house after laughing so loud at that line..Hilarious πŸ™‚

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