The children were all tucked into their beds, and my wife and I were settling into that blessed sliver of time when all is quiet in the house and we are actually awake to enjoy it. Then a strange sound drifted from the baby monitor. A gaspy, sucking kind of sound. I raced up the steps and threw open the door to Isaac’s room. He was lying on his belly, and when he heard me enter he popped his great bald cube of a head up over the crib bar and gave me a gummy grin. Then he returned to the evening’s entertainment, which was flurgling his forearm.

You know what a flurgle is, though you may not know that’s the name for it. A flurgle is best applied to the warm tickly flesh of someone you love, preferably by surprise. You accomplish it by placing your lips firmly against, say, a belly, and then blowing really hard, producing a flubba-flubba sound. Go ahead, try it. I’ll wait right here.

Pretty nifty, huh? The juvenile-minded among my readers might note that the sound is much like what one is able to produce with another orifice of the body, after eating a can of pork and beans with a side of cabbage salad.

That’s right, my seven month-old son has discovered how to make fart noises. The boy’s a prodigy.

This fascinates him to no end. If you pick him up, he starts pecking at your shoulders like a chicken. He tries to blow but mostly he just drools. If you hold him long enough, your shirt is left with a trail of slobber marks tinged by whatever godawful vegetable his mother has inflicted on him (her philosophy is that you give them the really icky foods when they don’t know any better: yams, avocado, brown rice — all the stuff Adam and Eve found waiting for them after they got kicked out of the Garden). Occasionally he connects and gets a little sound, which leads him to squeal with delight.

Bored with life? Have children. Just be sure to get plenty of sleep first.


  1. Michael Forrester

    Consumed with thoughts of the death of John Paul the Great, and the election of a new Pope, I thought to myself…what’s Tony’s take? He’s not Catholic, but hey, he no doubt has an opinion on the happenings – I’m curious to know what his slant is on the passing of such a great man, on the election of this new Pope. So I type in tonywoodlief.com. Excitedly, I immediately note that there has been a recent posting….


  2. Lenise

    Yes, my 7-month-old boy “flurgled” in the middle of a tired grumpy fit and turned my frustrated stress into laughter, which he more or less joined. Of course, 5 minutes later he was back at his fussy fit. *Sigh*

  3. cooper

    My little granddaughter is 8 months old in 4 days. She has yet to flurgle, but she got the raspberry down to a science. She’s practicing for her AP courses in high school!

  4. Graham Chastney

    We call it ‘towsling’, it’s a word that has come down my wife’s family line. My children and now 9 and 13 and it still works a treat.

    Need a bit of street relief? Need a giggle? Need some family bonding time? Towsling is the order of the day.

    I’m dreading the day when my eldest becomes ‘too old’ for such fun.

  5. Rachel

    I think I forgot to get plenty of sleep, but one thing is for sure, I am never in lack of entertainment with my 11 month old around! 🙂


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