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Yes, I Can Cat Whistle!

Taxi with bright lights on Donna Vincent Roa's voice actor website for a cat whistling blog article.

Bring on the Challenge

I’ve always been a competitive person. It started in my childhood when we lived next door to two brothers, Scott and Keith. They would often invite friends over and play on their carport. One day, I heard them discussing how to cat whistle. This kind of whistling is a bit more complex than a regular whistle. Most everyone knows how to purse their lips together and whistle. That whistling sounds like a bird. Cat whistling delivers a powerful, attention-grabbing sound.

I walked over to their carport to listen with intentionality. I could see that they demonstrated how to do it to each other. When they finished explaining the method to each other, they looked at me and said tauntingly, “Girls can’t do this.”

I’m always up for a challenge, so I quietly observed how they positioned their mouth, stretched their lips across their teeth, curled up their tongue, and breathed. At that moment, I memorized what they had done. This was my “study guide.”

Practice Makes Perfect

I ran back to my house, determined to achieve the impossible. No one was going to tell me I couldn’t do something. I stood in front of the mirror day after day for about a week, trying to correctly position my lips over my teeth as they had done.

I mustered attention and effort on this task. I could not allow their challenge to defeat me.

I practiced and practiced. I blew air across my teeth. I changed the degree of the curl of my tongue. The wrong sounds came out initially, but as I carefully positioned my lips over my teeth, I heard the birth of a whistle. I was determined that one day I would make the right sound. After several days of practice, I could do a powerful and magnificent cat whistle. I was proud of my achievement.

Girls Can Indeed Cat Whistle

The next day, I saw those boys again and blew a cat whistle that put theirs to shame. I whistled loudly and clearly, proving to them that girls could whistle, too!

This talent came in handy during my travels in Russia. One gray afternoon when taxis were scarce, I let out my loudest cat whistle to flag one down. Without Uber, you had to be aggressive to get a ride. My cat whistle pierced the air and got me a taxi quickly. As I entered the car, the taxi driver remarked, “Was that you?” Indeed it was, mister. Thanks to Keith and Scott’s taunting. My cat whistle saved the day.

My talent also landed me a unique role in a regional theater production of La Cage Aux Folles at Dominion Stage. I saw the dancers struggling to cat whistle during rehearsals. I asked the director if he needed a cat whistle like this. Then I blew the loudest cat whistle I could muster. Impressed, he hired me as the production’s official whistler soloist!

My cat whistling has proven helpful in so many ways over the years. I’m proud to have shown those boys long ago, and everyone since, that girls can master the cat whistle, too.

Cat Whistling, A Good Talent to Have

Of course, I’ve gotten plenty of mileage from my cat-whistling talent with my kids, too! When they were little, a loud cat whistle was the perfect way to get their attention at the park when they wandered too far. It carries so much farther than calling out their names.

The cat whistle is my family’s secret communication system. A unique loud whistle from mom can mean anything from “Time for dinner!” to “Knock it off! to “Where are you?” My kids now think it’s cool that I can whistle like that

And I smile, remembering how it all started with those boys telling me girls couldn’t do it. What did they know? This girl sure proved them wrong!

 #VoiceActor #SmartVoiceSmartChoice #CatWhistle #UsefulTalent #SheCanTalk

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