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Let's Panic: The Book!

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How to Endure and Possibly Triumph Over the Adorable Tyrant
who Will Ruin Your Body, Destroy Your Life, Liquefy Your Brain,
and Finally Turn You
into a Worthwhile
Human Being.

Written by Alice Bradley and Eden Kennedy

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Sleep Is
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Chicago Review Press

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Let's Panic

The site that inspired the book!

At LET'S PANIC ABOUT BABIES, Eden Kennedy and I share our hard-won wisdom and tell you exactly what to think and feel and do, whether you're about to have a baby or already did and don't know what to do with it. → 

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Here I am!

Hey there! Hey, you! How was your Thanksgiving? Was it good? Mine was good, too!

We hosted Thanksgiving this year for our in-laws. So drunk were we on our relatively roomy new house and our ability to own more than four wine glasses, we actually believed we could put together a well-rounded Thanksgiving meal. Shockingly, we were right. By some miracle, I cooked a twenty-pound turkey that tasted like turkey, and not like tree bark. (In this I was aided by my brother-in-law, who stuck the thermometer into various parts of the turkey as I huddled in the corner, shrieking I JUST DON’T WANT TO POISON EVERYONE.) Many side dishes were also composed and enjoyed, all without incident. My baby niece was just as adorable as I remembered, and I managed to hold her without gnawing at her cheeks, which took considerable strength of will.

The only mishap occurred the day before, when I heated the oven to bake the pumpkin pie, having forgotten that the day before I had sprayed some oven cleaner in there. The kind of oven cleaner that says WHATEVER YOU DO, DON’T HEAT UP THE OVEN WITH THIS IN IT all over the canister. I would have paid attention to this, were I able to read. What I needed was a picture of a toy poodle on its back with x’s where its eyes should be and its little pink tongue hanging out, but the E-Z-Off people didn’t care about my needs. So I almost killed us all.

Fortunately I noticed the foamy quality of the oven’s insides mere moments after turning it on, so instead of dying I only had to wipe away some hot oven cleaner. This was the most exciting thing that happened all week. The End.

And now, friends, my mind is cast inexorably toward the last hurdle of 2006, that being The Christ Child’s Birthday, Wherein We All Flirt With Poverty To Praise Jesus. My son, who was so articulate regarding his birthday wishes, now will only tell me that he wants “cool stuff.” He seems to feel that Santa will know what this means, as Santa is all-knowing. Sadly, his mother doesn’t know a thing. And there’s a disconnect between what he claims to like and what he actually plays with for more than five minutes. If I give him a puzzle, he will shrug and ask for the next gift, but then play with that puzzle every day until I want to burn the puzzle. Whereas if I buy him a militia of Power Rangers, his head will explode with joy, and the next day the Power Rangers will be dumped in his Enormous Bin of Guys, to be next seen in the Spring of Aught Eight. Oh, what’s a mother to do?

Reader Comments (40)

Whatever you do, stay AWAY from the Moon Sand! It gets EVERYWHERE, even with the prissiest kid playing carefully with it, and then you have a nice fine gritty dust to mar your floors and counters.

(Gritty. I just love that word.)
November 29, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterVelma
Dear Santa,

I'd like an Enormous Bin of Guys for Christmas. Please make them cute.



November 29, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterLeslie
Sounds like it was a total succes!

I can't imagine cooking a turkey. I mean, they're kinda ugly so I wouldn't MIND, I'm just sure I would screw it up.

Me and the oven are not friends.
November 29, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterJonathon
My three year old wants one of everything, this includes something from every part of the store and every commercial you could possibly see. Right now he's trying to buy one of my cook books with an old hotel room key and my phone(to enter his PIN #). He will receive too many toys this year like he did last year( it took 3 hours to open presents) On the other hand I also have a 9month old who really loves his booger getter (aspirator) and the 1 lb weights he manuevers through the house. We are going to take the older one to the Dollar store so he can pick out gifts for everyone and it won't cost a fortune because he, like me, can go in the dollar store and pick out the only thing for $5.00.Anyway, I know I'm rambling but my husband is the one who comments.
November 29, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterTricia
Get him some of those sproingy shoes that strap to your real shoes and let you hop around like a giant Easter bunny. And also a bag of heroin.
November 29, 2006 | Unregistered Commenterdorothy
We too were drunk on the roominess of our new house and cooked a 20-pound-turkey and it went well. And then we spent Friday on the couch, exhaustedly watching movies and waiting for That Kitchen Guy to fix the plumbing in our kitchen which obligingly sprung a large leak when we were cleaning up the dishes. But hey, the turkey was delish!
November 30, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterSonja
Dear L: have you ever listened to a child bang endlessly on a drum kit? A tone-deaf child who has a tin ear, no sense of rhythm (ak.a. any child that I have ever met) Stick me in the oven with the turkey - it would be less painful. All I am saying is, for the love of all that is good in this world, don't get your lad a drum set.
November 30, 2006 | Unregistered Commentersteph
I've done that with the EZ Off except I didn't remember it was in there until the clouds of chemical started escaping the oven.

My husband says I'm not allowed to touch the oven anymore. Since I set the last one on fire and tried to kill us all with this one.

My plan worked. Or at least that's the story I'm going with so I don't feel like a moron.
November 30, 2006 | Unregistered Commentermegan
Ooooh, toooys. I like to shop for them. A lot. And I don't like to shop for ANYTHING. Check out for some fun picks. There is soooo much fun out there!
November 30, 2006 | Unregistered Commenterwhymommy
You should send the Power Rangers to Yoga Beans for lessons. And is the extent of my suggestions.
November 30, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterTuck
I suggest trains. Wooden and/or GeoTrax. Trains and building and boys, how can you go wrong? I am constantly astounded by what my boy can do with these things:

December 1, 2006 | Unregistered Commenterraine
And I thought I was the only one who did tree bark turkey.
December 1, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterBuffy
Oh yes, the Spider-man wrist squirter-thingy had my son jumping up and down with glee. The wooden blocks he has played with nearly every day for the past two years weren't even opened up all the way. He left it half-wrapped. We get one or two "kid-pleaser" toys and the rest is stuff we know will be played with (or hope.)

December 3, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterDanielle Elder
Thank goodness your brother-in-law was there. Otherwise, what would you have done???

December 4, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterLiz
Depended on my BRILLIANT SISTER for advice, obvs.
December 5, 2006 | Unregistered Commenteralice

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