Friend: what's up?
Me: Hearing my friends screaming over a pillow.

Should hear be used instead of hearing? If not, why then?

  • 'listening to my friends scream'
    – V0ight
    Jul 15, 2016 at 23:26
  • why not screaming? like I saw my friend crying?
    – Lompo1
    Jul 15, 2016 at 23:30
  • nothing wrong with it, just sounds better to me. Something about two -ings in the same sentence sounds awkward.
    – V0ight
    Jul 15, 2016 at 23:32
  • Also use of over is unclear. What is meant by this? Are they arguing over a pillow? (Arguing about ownership) are they yelling at each other with a pillow between them at chest height or below? Do you mean through a pillow (the pillow is being held against their mouth)??? Something else?
    – Jim
    Jul 15, 2016 at 23:50

1 Answer 1


It totally depends on context: if you are trying to say "I am listening to my friend, who is screaming over a pillow", then it's "hearing". If you are trying to command your friend to listen to your friends screaming over a pillow, then "hear" is appropriate.

The statement is also a little odd: as it stands, the sentence you put up indicates that you are listening to multiple people scream either about (implying at each other as well), or over the top of, a pillow.

"Hearing my friends (possessive plural) screaming (plural) over (above, or possibly about?) a pillow".

I kind of hope they aren't fighting about a pillow...

  • Not possessive plural, just plural. The statement is also odd because however exactly the friends are screaming over the poor pillow, hearing them do so is an odd thing to reply to a “what's up?”. Jul 16, 2016 at 7:49

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