Why are kids so darn loud?

We live in a pretty quiet neighborhood on California’s Central Coast. We’re surrounded by strawberry and pepper fields and it’s very quiet. At the end of our four street mini neighborhood is a grade school. If I threw a rock out of my office window I might reach halfway to the playground.

Like I said, it’s a quiet neighborhood—except for Monday through Friday from around 11:00 am to 2:00 pm.. That’s when they let the kids come out. I can’t remember the last day it rained around here, so they’re outside everyday. And boy do they like to scream.

I’m not really complaining. I could close my window and just marginally hear them, or put on music and drown them out (I used to always listen to music while writing—not so much these days). I always have my window open, so the cats can sit up on the ledge and watch Birdy TV, so I can almost always hear the kids.

I don’t remember yelling all that much as a little kid. My mom was going through menopause when I was a young lad so yelling around the house was probably verboten. But why do kids yell?

It’s my guess that there’re two reasons. Firstly, they are little kids living in a big grown up world and they want to be big themselves. So they climb things and bray as loud as they can to give the impression that they are bigger than they are in reality. Secondly, I think it’s simply a matter of being heard. As adults we (mostly) talk politely and wait our turn to speak our minds. Kids haven’t developed this skill to the degree that most adults have, so to make themselves heard they yell louder than the kid next to them.

I guess I’ve always been too quiet for my own good. I remember in high school my best friend Trent Haynes would be with a group of people at school or at a party and we’d be joking around. I would say something and get no response, mostly because I was so quiet, but then Trent would repeat what I said and get roars of laughter. I didn’t mind it.

Perhaps that’s why I took up writing; so people could finally hear what I have to say.

The kids are kinda quiet right now. It’s after 3:00 so they must be gone for the day. They were really loud earlier but I didn’t mind because mixed in with all the yelling there was plenty of laughter. That always takes the edge off.

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