It’s Like Torture. But Worse.

I spend an inordinate amount of time singing to the children. This is often not of my own volition.

Theo: ‘Sing the dog song!’


Alice: ‘How Much is That Doggy in the Window?’, I ask.

‘NO! NOT THAT ONE!’, they roar in unison.

Alice: ‘…what other dog songs are there?’

I know where this is leading.

Theo: ‘The Dog Song!’


Alice: ‘Oh. You mean, as always, The Elmo Song. But about a dog?’


(The things I have sung this song about, I couldn’t begin to tell you. Well, I could. We would meet at a bar and talk about our days; you’d tell me about the project you were working on before we combed the emails The Person You Flirt With had sent you for cryptic nuances. And then, when it was my turn I’d say, ‘Well, today I sung the shit out of The Elmo Song. For 8 hours. Oh, you don’t know it? It goes like this…’)

Alice: ‘This is the song, la la la la, The Dog Song. This is the song, LA LA LA LA, THE DOG SONG!’

Alice: ‘Now…what do dogs like?’

Theo: ‘Food!’

Mabel: ‘STICKERS!’

Theo: ‘No, no, NO, Mae-Mae! Dogs DO NOT like stickers!’

Mabel: ‘Oh.’

Alice: ‘And why not? I thought that was a good suggestion.’

Theo: ‘Because the dog has claws! They aren’t like hands! He couldn’t get them off! He wouldn’t like stickers!’

Alice: ‘Oh, yes. I see. But don’t you think the dog could just enjoy looking at the stickers?’

Theo: ‘…But…his claws!’

Mabel: ‘…the dog likes flowers now.’

Alice: ‘Are we all happy with that?’


And we take it from the top.

For the rest of the day.

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