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Ignoring By Singing
This is when a character gets on another character's nerves, usually by talking nonstop, and the other character covers his ears and starts singing so he can't hear him.

The person doing this will almost always either start singing "The Star-Spangled Banner", or else just go "La-la-la". This is sometimes done (in-universe or in real life) to avoid hearing a spoiler, something Squicky, or anything else that a character feels he or she would be better off not hearing. Usually goes hand-in-hand with Too Much Information.


Examples:

Advertisment
  • Done in an Australian ad for insurance, aka CUA, where many people are blocking their ears and singing 'LA LA LA LA' all for just insurance rates.

Fan Fic
  • Done in the Teen Titans fic A night out:
    Garfield just laughed at that. "That's what I love about you two. You're exact opposite but have such a strong friendship."
    "Friend Raven is the best girl friend that I have. She even helps me during the week of blood." Said Kory with a bit too much enthusiasm.
    "Too much info Kor. LA la la la." Said Garfield with his hands on his ears.

Film
  • Done in Dr. Jekyll & Ms. Hyde during one of Richard Jacks's attempts to explain his plight to Sarah.
  • Liar Liar - Jim Carrey's character knows he is cursed to speak the truth when answering a question, but not if he can't hear the question! Doesn't work.
  • Miracle Max in The Princess Bride, when his wife is provoking him by reminding him of his treatment by Prince Humperdinck.
  • Beverly Hills Cop. After messing up the cigarette sting operation Axel Foley is bothered by fellow cop Jeffrey. Foley uses the "la la la" version while trying to get Jeffrey to stop.
    Foley: I am not listening to you.
    Jeffrey: Great. Real mature.
    Foley: I am not listening to Jeffrey, but he's still talking.
    Jeffrey: I hate when you do that.
  • In Honey, I Shrunk the Kids, when Ron and Amy get into an argument, Ron plugs up his ears and hums "Stars and Stripes Forever". She gets back at him later by handing him a fistful of mud while softly humming the same tune.
  • In Blast from the Past, Calvin has his son Adam clap his hands over his ears and hum loudly to himself so he won't hear Calvin's horrifying description of the strange world of mutants and perversion outside the fallout shelter he's just seen for the first time. Adam is a bit exasperated, as he's a 30-year-old man, but he dutifully complies.
  • In Jonah A Veggietales Movie, Jonah has a dream where God asks him where he's running to. Jonah tries his hardest to ignore God by the excuse that he can't hear him, including singing loudly.

Literature
  • A Dave Barry book mentions the trial of a Corrupt Corporate Executive whose defense was apparently based on the fact that he didn't know there was any embezzling going on. So the obvious procedure is to stick your fingers in your ears and yell "Lalala I can't hear what you're saying!!!" during board meetings.
  • In one of the Enderís Game books, Peter tells Petra that she's arguing like a nine-year-old, and that she might as well put her fingers in her ears and say "La la la, I can't hear you." Of course, she promptly does.
  • Septimus Heap: Merrin Meredith does this to drown out the irritating wail of a Swamp Wraith.
  • In the third Diary of a Wimpy Kid book, when Greg and Rowley are being driven to a roller skating rink to impress Holly Hills and Susan overhears the conversation:
    Greg: LA LA LA...I CAN'T HEAR YOU!

Live-Action TV
  • In an episode of Happy Endings, Brad does this twice. First, when someone brings up Sexandthe City, going "lalalala, I have it on DVR!" Then later, when Max mentions that Jane (Brad's wife) slept with nearly every guy she dated, he says "lalalala, let me know when you're done!"
  • Played for Laughs in an episode of True Blood: One of the main characters is a psychic, and one of her friends wanted to keep a secret from her. When the psychic tunes into her friend's thoughts, all we hear is "LALALALALALALALALALALALALALA".
  • Invoked/Exploited/Enforced (whatever) in Bones where Booth has to talk to Brennan and Sweets about something grisly in front of his young son, so he has his son cover his ears and sing a song while the adults talk.
  • Attempted by Kurt on Glee when his dad gives him "The Talk". Fortunately his dad forces him to sit and listen to what winds up being a very sweet discussion about the importance of self respect and sex.
  • A dead serious example in Farscape where John escapes Scorpius by singing "The Star Spangled Banner" to drown out the influence of Scorpius' neural clone.
  • A very funny version in Stargate SG-1 when O'Neill tries to calm down a very angry Teal'c.
    O'Neill: Look, T, I'm not gonna tell you how to raise your kid, but I've always found that sticking your fingers in your ears and humming loudly solves a whole slew of problems.
  • When G'Kar objects to the Centauri Emperor's upcoming visit to Babylon 5, Sheridan sarcastically tells him that if he can't deal with it he should put his fingers in his ears and hum really loud until it's over.

Music

Newspaper Comics

Puppet Shows
  • When Charlene and Robbie on Dinosaurs ask a teacher questions he doesn't want to answer he goes "La la la, can't hear you!"

Stand-Up Comedy

Theatre
  • In Avenue Q, Rod tries using "la la la" when Nickie tries to discuss homosexuality with him in the "If You Were Gay" number.

Video Games
  • There's an NPC in Ratchet & Clank: Going Commando - a biker in Vukovar Canyon on planet Barlow - that uses this trope because Ratchet offended him; he is only willing to listen to Clank.
  • This happens twice in Kid Icarus: Uprising: Thanatos does it when Pit wonders aloud whether Thanatos is Obfuscating Stupidity or just dim, and Viridi does it when Pit comments on how the Komaytos look like Metroids (because, according to Viridi, the two video game universes have nothing to do with each other).
  • In The Sims 2, if two sims have a bad conversation one of them might cover his or her ears and go "La La La La!".
    • In The Sims 3, a sim may also do this when refusing an opportunity by phone call.
  • In Tales of Monkey Island Episode 1: Launch of the Screaming Narwhal, Guybrush does this when he is talking the Voodoo Lady. To avoid her very long talking, Guybrush plugs his ears and says, "La-la-la-la! Not listening!" This mutes the Voodoo Lady's voice before Guybrush unplugs his ears, just in time to hear the rest of the Voodoo Lady's talking.
    • Similarly in The Curse of Monkey Island, if you don't want to hear Le Chuck's explanation of past events, one of the options is for Guybrush to turn his back to him, cover his ears and shout "Lalala, I can't hear you, lalalala".
  • Diablo II: Blizzard warns you, they will not recover your Hardcore Character if it dies.
    Blizzard will not, and does not have the capability to restore any deceased Hardcore characters. Don't even ask. La-la-la-la-la, we can't hear you...

Web Comics
  • A running gag in early Arthur, King of Time and Space was Arthur doing this every time Merlin started predicting things he didn't want to hear.
  • In Freefall, one of the robots uses this as a "security measure" against sticky notes detailing Gardener in the Dark, an update which will effectively lobotomize every robot on the planet, and which is forced on any robot which searches the name on the network, because all they know about it is that it's so dangerous it caused one of them to open his power breaker to avoid its effects. [1]
  • Understandably done in Questionable Content by Faye while Dora and her recently out of the closet younger sister feel the need to openly discuss intimate things.
  • In Hiimdaisy's Let's Destroy the Shagohod, Snake gets defeated by The End and dragged a fair distance away from the boss arena. Snake gets slightly frustrated, and starts sprinting through the jungle. When a guard spots him, Snake, while still sprinting, says "La la la! I can't hear you!"
  • In Leftover Soup, Jamie takes Simon's suggestion a bit literally.

Web Original
  • In Death Note: The Abridged Series (Kpts4tv) Matsuda does this when L proves that Light is Kira.
    Matsuda: La la la la la I'm not listening!
  • This Cracked article points out that in Inception Cobb could have prevented a lot of trouble if he'd put his fingers in his ears and sung while Ariadne gave the rest of the team directions instead of insisting on her telling him first.

Western Animation
  • This happens in The Emperor's New Groove with Kuzco and Pacha after Pacha warns Kuzco not to venture into the forest. Kuzco responds "La la la la not listening" and keeps it up a bit as he starts walking on the path into the forest before "la la" ing again and shouting back "still not listening!"
  • Futurama, "Godfellas":
    Fry: You can't lose hope just because it's hopeless. You gotta hope more, then put your fingers in your ears and go "Blah blah blah blah!"
    • And again in "Put Your Head On My Shoulders," when Fry's body has been horribly damaged in an accident and his head has been grafted onto Amy's shoulder. When Fry wants to discuss something without Amy hearing, he asks her for some privacy. She complies by singing softly to herself in Martian while Fry is talking.
  • Adam West does it at least once in Family Guy, in the episode where he made a giant golden Dig'Em statue and the town protests against this waste in taxpayer money.
  • In The Rescuers Down Under, Frank the frill-necked lizard covers his ears and sings "Waltzing Matilda" when Krebbs the koala starts describing what the poacher is going to do to them.
  • On the season nine Simpsons episode "Simpson Tide," the Naval Reserve recruiter does this when Homer tries to ask him about a question on the application that got blocked out about being a homosexual, which, if asked, would get the recruiter sent to jail for discrimination.
    • In the sixth-season episode "Bart's Girlfriend," Reverend Lovejoy's rebellious daughter Jessica admits responsibility for stealing money from the church collection plate, a crime initially pinned on Bart. When she claims she was crying out for attention, the reverend covers his ears and sings "Bringing In the Sheaves" as he runs out of the church with Jessica trailing behind.
    • In Season 21's "Bart Gets a Z", Principal Skinner orders the students to stick their fingers in their ears and go "la la la" while the new substitute teacher is drunk and shouting about how alcohol is a great way to get rid of sadness and other similar things.
  • It was done by Charlie once in Charlie and Lola.
  • The Flea did it once to his baby sister Pulgita in °Mucha Lucha!.
  • The Swan Princess II. "YI YI YI YI YI - I don't hear you! YI YI YI YI YI - I'm not listening! YI YI YI YI YI YI YI YI YI YI..."

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alternative title(s): La La La Not Listening; Avoiding By Singing; Not Listening Song; Cant Hear You Song; La La La
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