Some people are just yellers. It’s how they communicate. Regardless of proximity, if they’ve got something to say it’s going to come out amplified. Like some of our neighbours. Different sets, parents to multiple children of varying ages and genders. But all somehow incapable of putting themselves close enough to their children to just speak; commands must be delivered from great distance and at a great volume.

What they fail to recognize is that we can all hear them too. Kids didn’t clean up their mess? Good to know. Up past their bedtime? Yeah well, happens to the best of us. Slow to get in the damn car? Wonder how they can hear that particular order when it’s barked from the driveway and they’re inside the house (though I can hear it perfectly well, over the traffic, from across the street), but whatever. The point is these people don’t recognize that they share the world, share this aural space, and make others privy to their private moments. Particularly those moments when they don’t shine as parents (because we all have them).

We also become privy to other types of intimate moments. Does she really want us to know how she feels betrayed by a friend who failed to take the right side in an argument with her (now ex) boyfriend? Because she’s, well, a loudmouth, I’m invited into that particular exchange (and I can’t help but wonder who I’d side with myself).

Philosophical and psychological arguments aside, it’s just plain unseemly. Maybe it’s because I was raised in a house where, by virtue of volume, the neighbours must have been uncomfortably familiar with our own private moments, many in conflict. Maybe it’s because I was raised in a house where, conversely, we spent a lot of time on eggshells, so I’m exquisitely sensitized to the effects my noise has on those around me. Or maybe, you know, maybe it’s just because I’m not a jerk. Seriously, screaming matches on the phone? Yelling at your kids from the driveway? C’mon! Back to the trailer park, honey. You left your curling iron on.

1 Comment

  1. “Back to the trailer park, honey. You left your curling iron on.” Brilliant.

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