Tuesday, January 09, 2007

the magic of squealing

Tonight I was driving the children home after an exhausting day, and Lola was complaining. "I had a rough day." It turns out that at her playdate, Lola "wanted to watch TV, but she made me play with her toys."

"Were the toys cool?"


Lola also expressed the complaint that her little friend had been rude to her (although give that she also expressed the worry that her friend would think Lola wasn't really a friend, I suspect the alleged rudeness was bilateral, to say the least). Here big sister Iris jumped in with some advice:

"Lucy, you're going to have to get used to rudeness. EVERYONE is going to be rude! What you have to do is squeal."

"I always do squeal."

(By this point, I was riveted and, not wishing to interrupt the flow of conversation, remained silent behind the wheel).

"By squealing, Lucy, I mean tell the teachers. Tell EVERYONE. That is what I always do. That is squealing."

Lucy made admiring noises, and Iris continued on. "I always squeal. Squealing works! But once one of my friends squealed on me, and I was hating on it. It was really her fault. She was wrong."

Believe me, this is not how they were raised.


Anonymous said...

Funny, isn't it? Squealing does work. Until you get to a certain age. After that, it tends to bring the wrath down on you. So much so, in fact, that we have to have whistleblower protection laws and such. Odd, I think, that when squealing is the right thing to do, we need laws to protect it. But when it gives unfair advantage it rarely goes punished. What a culture...

Anonymous said...

Perhaps it's too early an age to have a talk about the nuances of squealing? Here would be my take on it.

* Things that are mere annoyances (such as someone teasing you just to get your attention) that will dissipate upon ignoring them aren't worth a squeal.

* Things that could be remedied by better communication and self assertion aren't worth a squeal.

* When the harm being cannot be resolved by yourself alone, and it involves real danger, then it is time to squeal.

The trick is being able to discern categories (1) and (2) from (3).

Whistleblowing laws rightly protect category (3).

I'm too d@mn verbose right now to put this discussion in age appropriate terms right now. It's below 60 oF in most of the house, and I'm waiting for the HVAC repair guy to give me the total on what it's going to cost us to fix the infernal thing.

Anonymous said...

It's funny how we try to communicate messages to our kids about certain topics in life, and they often form their own conclusions that utterly fly in the face of what we've tried to teach them.

Anonymous said...

Isn't this the child that was plotting how she was going to take over the world? Now she is giving tips o how to squeal? I'm guessing career as either a mob boss or FBI agent.

Anonymous said...

squealing does work. especially the high pitched kind that only dogs can hear.

also crying. especially if you're a grown man. you'd be amazed at how uncomfortable people get and will do anything to make you stop.

just sayin'.

Anonymous said...

I was a champion squealer - until my younger sister learned to use her lungs and fists (not in that order) In hindsight I probably deserved what I got!

Anonymous said...

I find man-crying kind of sweet, actually. After being married to hypermachoguywithsomethingtoprovebecausehehasaverysmallpenis, the fact that my boyfriend will occasionally get teary-eyed over a movie or conversation charms the hell out of me.

Anonymous said...

oops...missed a couple of words there (smallpenis)

Anonymous said...

lmao spill the beans - so small it got left off!!