How To Annoy Your Kids


Its a parent’s God given right to both embarrass and annoy their offspring. Here at Chez Abulous  embarrassment is yet to kick in. At age 7 and (almost) 5 my girls are too young to be fully cognisant of just how embarrassing Mum and Dadabs are.  We are both short of stature, wild of hair and geeky of taste. No doubt we will cause much mortification in the future. In the meantime I’ve got the annoyance thing down pat.  As a generous spirit I shall share my knowledge and experience so that you too can drive your kids crazy.

I present a by no means definitive list of things that irritate the bejeepers out of my kids.

Singing. They hate it when I butcher their favorite Katy Perry toons. However I special form of loathing is reserved for my rendition of Weird Al’s “Eat it”.  For me this 80s classic has taken on special resonance since becoming a parent. These  lines get trotted out at meal times with alarming frequency ;

“Don’t want to argue. I don’t want to debate

Don’t wanna hear about the foods you hate

You won’t get no dessert til you clean up your plate

So eat it. Just eat it. Wooooooooo!”

The response is always groaning and pleading. “Muuuuum. You said you wouldn’t sing that.”

NB: For bonus annoyance points make sure to add a enthusiastic “Woooooooooooooo”. A Michael Jackson crotch grab is probably taking things too far. It is also important to note that the “Dont want to argue. I dont want to debate” line covers a wide range of situations. I like to trot it out in the morning when the girls are complaining about my choice of socks.

Its pop parody gold but my kids haaaaate it.

Its pop parody gold but my kids haaaaate it.

Being described as “recalcitrant” – The Malaysian PM  Mahathir Mohamad did not appreciate it when he was accused of recalcitrance by Paul Keating. (This happened in 1993 so of course you are too young to remember it).  At the time it sparked a diplomatic incident. If anything my kids like it less than Mahathir. “Muuuum. I am NOT a ‘calcitrant. Don’t call me a ‘calcitrint”, they will whine whilst refusing to get dressed, brush their teeth or put on shoes.  The fact that they are recalcitrant to do these things is of no concern to them.

Criticizing their choice of viewing – My seven year old has recently become a Winx fan girl. I’m not sure its appropriate but the horse has bolted. Banning it now would only imbue it with a mystique it does not deserve.  My problem is that the Winx present like slappers. Their hair is over coiffed, they wear too much makeup and slink around in slutty skin tight lycra – and that is just the blokes. P1 doesn’t appreciate me pointing this out to her.  Meanwhile I know she’ll tire of Winx and go back to watching (bloody) Arthur on a continuous loop. Arthur is innocuous (which makes him so bloody irritating).

Those Winx boys are man-tarts! The red head with the glasses is undeniably my type however.

Those Winx boys are man-tarts! The red head with the glasses is undeniably my type however.

Repetition – “What cant I do?” – “Two things at once”. “What don’t I like?” – “whinging”.  I say these things so many times I day ,I  should bypass speaking and just get the T-shirt printed. “Muuum. You say this all the time. You’re boring” Nevertheless after 7 years of parenthood the message is yet to sink in. Perhaps it cant penetrate the brain blood barrier at the molecular level.

The fact that I cant do two things at once.

The fact that my tolerance for whinging is limited.

My technical incompetence -The girls are believers in the magic of technology. For them the interwebs is a mystical place where their every desire can be conjured. This is true 99% of the time. Occasionally however the internet wont give them what they want  eg- film  clip where the La La Loopsys join forces with My Little Pony to go raiding in Ben and Holly’s Little Kingdom. It is evitably my fault when You Tube wont deliver.

Inadequate wardrobe – P2 can never find anything suitable to wear and as Chez Ab’s chief fashion buyer  it is my fault. My taste is apparently concealed within my underpants.

Sending packaged snacks to school on Waste-Free-Wednesday. Woe betide the parent who places packaged snacks in their child’s lunch box on Waste Free Wednesday. Not only are you solely responsible for the melting of the polar ice caps you’ve denied you child precious “house points”.

My Arnold Schwarzenegger impersonation – Fair call – that’s really annoying.

The Mumabs is more Conan the Librarian. (PS: Conan is one of the funniest movies of all time)

The Mumabs is more Conan the Librarian. (PS: Conan is one of the funniest movies of all time)

What would you add to the list? How to you annoy your kids? Are you embarrassing them yet? I need some tips for the future.



24 thoughts on “How To Annoy Your Kids

  1. Brilliant Mumabs. Singing is great because it removes any grumpiness. I know what you mean about a low tolerance for whinginess. I wish more parents actively taught their kids not to whinge. No waste Wednesday would not work at our school. Half the kids would come with no lunch I’m sure. You sound like a hilarious Mum to me.

  2. Writing notes that say things like ‘good luck on your test today’ and ‘don’t forget to eat your fruit!’ and sneaking them in your 13 year old son’s lunch box is bound to bring embarrassment. Or so I’ve heard! 😉

  3. BAHHAHHAHAHHAHAHHAHAHHA! You had me at “recalcitrant”. And the singing, oh my god, THE SINGING!! My mum used to do this and it made me want to die of embarassment and weep with frustration all at once. DON’T SING IF YOU DON’T KNOW THE FLIPPING WORDS!! Oh, and Winx Club. Do. Not. Even. Sorry for wanky self-promotion but I was moved to pen this missive last year when I discovered that they were “a thing”. It’s called “Sexy Fairies Will Destroy Your Daughters”

    • Speaking of the horse bolting, there is a very good racehorse in Sydney called Winx. I didn’t realise the TV connection till now. That said, there is also a horse called Dothraki, which I was blissfully unaware was a Game Of Thrones thing. I suspect connecting everything to horse racing will annoy the kids nicely?

  4. Oh, I think humiliating your kids is like a rite of passage. Practically compulsory!

  5. I don’t have to try to hard to annoy or embarrass my boys. After all, I love The Carpenters. But they all torture me with soccer and Lego, so they deserve payback. Meanwhile, I thought I was the only one who sung Eat It to their kids!

  6. I annoy my children by forcing them to do jobs properly. Here’s how it works… I ask the boys to do a chore, like say clean up the repositories of crap they refer to as their rooms. A flurry of movement ensures but in under 5 minutes they are all back in the lounge with their faces glued to various bit of technology. I know full well that the crap repositories could not possibly have been tidied thoroughly within such a short amount of time so I check their work. It is, as I suspected, still crap so I bellow things a like “get back in there and do it properly” and “that’s the most half-arsed effort I’ve ever seen” and in moments of rare stress “you’re just like your bloody father”.

    They find this very annoying. I know this because as they trudge back in to their rooms I hear them muttering about totalitarian regimes and how one day they will “overthrow the tyrant” 😉

  7. My daughter is only 1, so no need to embarrass her yet, but I’m loving your list and will be saving it for future reference! haha

  8. I get yelled at to stop if I sing, dance or clap my hands…I don’t know if it’sa right to embarrass them, or a punishment. I’ve been told not to say ‘dude’ as ‘no one says that – it’s weird’ and when I said we had to go to town, I was met with “What does that even mean?” (apparently that’s an old lady way of going to the city)

  9. Oh good god, I have it down to an art form! I drop off miss 12 at school then as she’s getting to the gate, I crank the radio, toot the horn and yell “Love you, sausage!” out the window. I also sing, badly. And so much more!

  10. Ha! Love this! My 2 and a half year old is already anti singing and dancing by anyone other then myself except for Sunday when I sung ‘I like to move it, move it!’ for what felt like 40 minutes continuously just so I could rest my ass in a chair and he could dance.

  11. I am going to start to use the eat it song immediately! Loved your post 🙂

  12. My Dad always used to embarrass me so I swore I would never embarrass my kids. No doubt I’ve failed. But I do remember Dad and I being in KMart one day when I was about 13. I was in a different section and instead of look for me, he proceeded to call my name at the top of his voice. I swear I will NEVER do that.

  13. Lol. It must be fun at your house. Those Winx look like total slappers. What’s with the thigh high tights? OMG. As for Arthur, whenever that little mouse, rabbit or whatever the hell he is comes on, I switch the telly off. Yawn. The kids hate my singing and my dancing, so I do it more and more until they break 🙂

  14. Aargh the non stop whingeing! The infernal 7yo girl TV choices…Yes sometimes I am asked not to sing. Hmmmmph. When push comes to shove a tickle attack can be annoying but also helpful!

  15. Mine is all in the singing … or skipping through the mall … or yelling out “did you put on clean undies?” …. I have a teen and a ten year old. The teen is now easily embarrassed. The 10 year old not so much yet. I don’t do it often … but I do threaten it which makes my teen ensure she has good attitude and lovely manners when we’re out in public under threat of me breaking into a jig.
    Leanne @ Deep Fried Fruit

  16. My little guy is only 5 so I haven’t been able to embarrass him yet.
    But I can’t wait to be the mum who does that!
    Singing would be my weapon of choice too, love it!

  17. My kids hate singing here as well. I personally like singing Let It Go to them when they are fixated on an issue. My, doesn’t that get them going for some reason… 🙂 And, I totally get the YouTube thing. My kids are the same – WHY can’t I produce videos that don’t exist or WHY won’t it play on a mobile device or WHY does it buffer all the time.

    Some days, I hate YouTube…

  18. I am so using that song!
    Great list! Mine are too young to understand embarrassment yet but you’ve stocked my toolbox for the future! Cheers!

  19. Ha ha ha these are fantastic! I’m always on the hunt for weapons of mass embarrassment for my daughters. I also like a bit of impromptu breakdancing to freak them out a bit. I’m yet to build to public breakdancing, but I figure as I get older, I’ll care less and my desire for embarrassment will win out. I’m looking forward to the day.

  20. ooo throw in a donut at Kiss and Drop and lots of hanging out the window screaming I love you and you have nailed the whole embarrassment thing. You have given me some new ideas… I cant wait to try them on the kids xx

  21. In our house it is any sign of affection between mum and dad, especially kissing. That is just gross!!

  22. My daughter is a toddler so pretty much everything I do annoys her – saying no, forcing her to have her nappy changed, dressing her, making her go to bed, putting her in the pram etc etc

  23. Some great tips in there, thanks!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s