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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

Some Books
I'm In...

Sleep Is
For The Weak

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. → 

« Hi, I'm panicky. | Main | Henry wants you all to know... »

Things I thought I would do as a grown-up, when I was seven.

Wear pantyhose.

Okay, I have worn panytyhose in my life, but not with the regularity I assumed I would. I do not even own a pair, currently. If my mother found this out she would be scandalized.

Get brainwashed.

I didn't know if it would be by an underground militia or a cult, but I was pretty sure that at some point in my life, I would be wearing white robes and my new name would be Snowfall. I wasn't looking forward to deprogramming, but I knew that when I did, my brooding deprogrammer would fall in love with me even as he brutalized my warped mind back into reality. It's for your own good, he would whisper over my inert body. Still hasn't happened.

Quit smoking.

I have never smoked, so I have never been able to quit. I have been robbed of that triumphant feeling of removing the nicotine monkey from my back.

Play bridge.

I barely know what bridge is, but the adults I knew, they all played it. As I came of age, I suspected that I would be indoctrinated into the ways of bridge. So far no one's come at me with a pack of cards.

Play tennis.

I hated tennis, I could never play, in school I was always assigned to hit balls against the side of the building because I disrupted everyone else's game—but when I reached some milestone of adulthood, I knew that I would simply begin sporting tennis whites and calling my gal pals up for doubles. I thank God every day that this has not happened.

Attend corporate black-tie events.

This would be for my husband, who would be some sort of corporate stooge. See above re: thanking God. Then again, paid vacations would be nice.

Enjoy cocktails at 5.

You know in Annie Hall, when Woody Allen has dinner with Diane Keaton's family? That's how Scott describes meeting my family, a lot. And it's all because of the cocktails. (Also some other things.) Mother likes her Manhattans. But here I am, almost 40, and if I have a drink at 5 p.m. I'm asleep by 8.

Have a nervous breakdown.

Having read "The Yellow Wallpaper," I figured that at some point in a woman's life she succumbs. And everyone knows I'm the nervous type, prone to hysteria, given to fits. I assumed that at some point I would take to my bed for a period of weeks, perhaps in the country. There would be hushed voices outside my door, the occasional cool compress. And yet! Although I have suffered the melancholia throughout my life, I have not yet felt my mind completely fracture. There's still time, though.

Reader Comments (78)

I can come at you with a pack of cards to play gin rummy, if that's an acceptable substitute for bridge.

August 20, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterRebecca
Well, I feel quite ignorant now because I haven't read The Yellow Wallpaper at all. I have never even HAD Yellow Wallpaper so I don't know if I even qualify to comment!

I will anyway. I thought at seven that when I was an adult I'd live in some cool high-rise in the city. You know, like the Jefferson's? (I grew up in small-town Texas, did I fail to mention that?) Then, at about 10, I switched that to living in the burbs just like the families on Knott's Landing and wearing LOTS of blue eyeshadow just like Abby did. Now I live in the burbs, and my neighborhood has WAY more drama than Knott's. (But, I haven't worn the blue eyeshadow since high school, I promise!)

Who says dreams can't come true?
August 20, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterSteph.
My thoughts on my adult life were very similiar, but in place of Bridge was Bunco.
August 21, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterPretty Lush

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