Please may I just excuse myself from this interaction? JACK DANIELS.

by renegademama

Sometimes I’m at the park or a kid’s birthday party and I end up in a chat with another mom, and that’s cool, I like to chat. Sometimes though, within moments, it becomes clear that we aren’t here to “chat” but rather engage in a pissing match to determine WHO EXACTLY IS THE BETTER MOTHER.

You. You are the better mother. No comparison. Now can we move on?

Round II: Who has the better children.

You win, lady. You’re better and your kids are clearly WAY better.

I don’t want to play.

I don’t care how “gifted” your son is (A master of standardized testing?! Oh Em Gee!) and how your daughter plays tennis and you’re taking her out of school because surely she is going to the Olympics.

She’s not going to the Olympics. Nobody goes to the Olympics.

Or maybe she will. Whatever.

My kid told me the other day she wishes she could take her ear off so she could “chew on the squishy part.”

BE IMPRESSED.

No seriously I don’t care about your kids’ grades and I don’t care about how they skipped this and that and whatever the hell.

I chose my kid’s school based on the quality of their special ed program. Wanna talk about that? I didn’t think so.

Do I seem angry? I’m not.

But I am TIRED. Tired of that feeling. Tired of that “oh here we go” realization like a wave over me. Here we go, into the bullshit. Into the masquerading, the fronting, the posturing, omitting and censoring.

Pretty sure I just dropped my 3rd F-bomb.

I TRY people I TRY.

Not really actually.

If I manage to withhold ill-timed expletives, I pretty much immediately say something I probably should have kept inside. Usually I think I’m being funny. Or, I think I’m commiserating with another mom.

(She does not think I’m funny.)

For example, I may say: “Lord do they EVER stop talking? I told them yesterday if they don’t stop talking for 5 minutes I’m going to saw my own ears off. I thought that was something of a win. Out of shock they stopped talking for 2.5 minutes.”

“Well developmentally it’s important to engage your children in age-appropriate….”

FUCK ME SIDEWAYS LADY I surrender.

I think I’m just old. I have fewer fucks to give with each year that passes, and I started with a limited number, I assure you. And I have 4 kids now, which means all my parental delusions of grandeur have been reduced to “Why does my car still smell like old apples?”

Yes. That is my kid standing on top of the monkey bars and NO, no I don’t care that he’s there and YES, yes I know he could potentially fall but can you not see what’s beneath him?

Sand. Motherfucking SAND.

Look, if I had known we were gonna do this I would have remained on the bench gazing lovingly into my iPhone so you could have judged me from afar. But you engaged me and I thought “Oh, okay, human interaction. But now I see my whole role here is to help you establish your superiority.”

The problem is I have nothing to prove. I mean I’m like on the ground. I’m just like here. Being a human.

We’re at the park, stuck here with tiny insane half-naked sticky dictators, WHY MUST WE PLAY the ‘Who’s got the biggest penis’ VAGINA STYLE game?”

This is not fun. Can’t we just be friends?

No, no we cannot. Clearly, because you just launched into telling me about how your 3-year-old taught herself to read.

OBVIOUSLY A GENIUS, now CanIBitchAboutMyHusbandPLEASE?

No? Well, I’m so glad you explained how the Paleo diet altered the course of your lives.

I’d totally get behind the Paleo diet if it allowed more frosting.

I do like bacon though.

Nope.

Let’s talk about Bikram and barre.

I’m still in maternity clothes and had my baby a year ago. Now do you or do you not have a croissant to go with my head-sized iced coffee?

My face says “I’m out.” I mumble. Uh huh. Yeah. Wow. Sure.

No-go.

Your baby slept through the night at 3 months? Sleep trained since birth? AMAZING. Mine is 12 months and nurses approximately 94% of the night and yes it sucks (haha see what I did there?) and no I’m not planning on doing anything about it. But thank you for the book recommendation.

 

Do you ever feel like you just don’t want to play? You know, the games? The human games (because of course men do this too)? The one-upping, the let’s establish hierarchy and determine who’s best? The stroke my ego while I diminish yours?

Whatever it is. All of it, but with the nice clean polish of friendly banter.

I just don’t understand WHY we have to do it. We’re both humans standing here with kids and bodies and minds and life is hard and parenthood is gorgeous AND bullshit and you and I both know you don’t know what the hell you’re doing any more than I do so why can’t we just let THAT be? Why can’t we just hang out in “I feel your pain” land and enjoy the adorable little monsters bolting around?

I know. I know this is just small talk, but if we can spend 20 minutes in a passive-aggressive verbal gymnastics, we can just as easily spend 20 minutes in LET’S BE REAL with each other.

I wish I could say: “I am a super fucking friendly person. You’ve got nothing to prove with me, lady. I’m just here for the kid silence.”

 

And if that doesn’t work, maybe we could have a code word, so like-minded moms like me (and probably you if you’ve read this far) can call to one another as a form of rescue. Like a mother life raft. Something we can shout when we’re cornered by Over-Zealous Preschool Mom or Why Aren’t Your Kids Dressed in Organic Hemp Mom or Attachment Parenting Zen Goddess Mom and then, when we hear it, we can run to each other’s sides and be like Was I paged? 

Maybe “Jack Daniels.” Quick, probably not going to be said often at kid events. Catchy. Memorable.

I can see it now:

Her: “I chose xxx school because of the GATE program because Johnny skipped 2 grades.”

Me: “Jack Daniels.” (Looks around nervously.)

Her: “My husband is a physicist and next week we’re going on a vacation to New Zealand with the nanny but I’m just having a really hard time packing Waldorf-approved airplane play bags for the kids!”

Me: “JACK DANIELS!”

Her: “Do you have health insurance because you know what your kid is doing is really unsafe and clearly you don’t care.” (that actually happened.)

Me: “JACK MOTHERFUCKING DANIELS!!!”

And then you’ll come to my rescue. And we’ll be friends.

Plan?

Sweet. See you at the next kid thing.

JACK DANIELS.

IMG_1078

Rocket’s face: Me during the one-upping conversations.

*******

HEY, my writing workshop is open again. 

Begins July 22.

Here’s what people are saying:

“I’m much more confident about my writing after taking this workshop. I feel like you really showed me how good my writing can be and how to get it there. And it was a ton of fun! Made some great connection, personally and professionally.” – Jessica G.

“I loved the class; it was the perfect kick in the butt to just go ahead and WRITE ANYWAY!!” – Brynly B.

“I felt like I was hearing solid, professional, practical advice to move forward. I 100% met my goal for the class. I have been wondering if I could or would write in the future, I didn’t know what my content should be and now I know my plan. I learned how to continue to improve and found some people I could reach out to for some criticism as well. People I trust…I felt very safe.” – Tracy M.

JOIN US. It’s already half full!

bastards1

  • Shawna Henderson

    I’m here, friend.

    • Lisa

      Honestly, I find that dropping the F bomb within the first minute or so of conversation kind of weeds out the superiority complex moms.

      It’s the most wonderful feeling in the world to see the gleam in another mom’s eyes when I drop it and she visibly relaxes into normal conversation.

      I will never stop dropping the F Bomb.

      • Christy

        I will be designing a tee-shirt. All Jack Daniels mom look for it at it a store near you — just wear it — we will be there!! I just might!

        I needed this today — more than prayer.

        • Woodstockgurl

          T-shirts will read, “Jack F*ing Daniels!”

          • NEC16

            I’ll buy one of those!

    • Alysicia

      holy cow, AMEN! I ran into a mom I barely knew in the grocery store. She proceeded to ask me for easy, or no cook ideas to feed her toddler for dinner because she was out of ideas. So I told her some of my go to things when I feel like uber lazy mom. She proceeded to judge and pick apart my suggestions (and me). With comments such as ” you let your daughter eat that?” Horror of all horror, yes I give my child lunch meat, and on occation pancacks with protien powder in them. I totally felt baited in. Next time I will throw out the code word and see if anyone pops up to my rescue. Thanks for showing the rest of us there are others who just want to be real. Human is enough, real is enough.

      • Anja

        I bet you’d have gotten an even more shocked reaction if you had replied with “Jack Daniels” when asked for easy no cook toddler dinners but hey, that at least would have been fun 😉

      • Peggy Miller

        Oh no, are we not supposed to feed our kids pancakes? Schniekie, we had them for dinner. AND THEY WERE DELISH!

    • Debbie Butters

      Quite possibly the funniest thing I’ve ever read! Seriously. I was like hoping it would never end and I could just spend the rest of my life sitting here reading and laughing hysterically. LOVED IT!!

  • Lias

    Thank you, just thank you!!

  • Tracy

    “I think I’m just old. I have fewer fucks to give with each year that passes, and I started with a limited number, I assure you.”

    I’m a Christian stay at home, homeschooling 36-yo mother of 5: yes yes!yes!thank you. I agree with you every time I read your posts. You say what I’m thinking!! Why can’t we just support each other?! Thankful for local friends like you that think like us.

  • Danielle Barnsley-Cervo

    I spent all weekend at a dance recital, I was doing well with the f-bombs (saying none, or rather mouthing them instead), and then near the end, surround by a couple of the more religious folk in our group, as we were discussing a crazed child, I emphatically let out, “Jesus Christ!”

    Whoops.

    Jack Daniels?

    • Spenser

      At least you don’t say “Jesus H. Fucking Roosevelt Christ” as I have been known to say. Once. Or twice…..

  • Andi

    I wished we lived closer because I would definitely come to your Jack Daniel’s rescue!

  • Agata

    My kid knows the alphabet. But he fell head-first into the toilet while peeing, so….
    They’re all a perfect mix of genius and complete moron, whether mom admits it or not.
    Glad to see you back!

    • Brenda

      Yes!

    • Eileen

      So funny! The laugh felt good, thank you 🙂

    • Brittany

      lol my little girl head butts the wall and is accident prone but shes already starting potty training, ahead in her vocabulary (dont know how considering how often she head buts the wall) and is using a sippy. so i have to agree every child is the perfect mix of stupid and smart.

  • Erin

    This couldn’t have come at a better time, as I sat in my sons new preschool a few weeks ago at the open house and felt like I was thrown back into high school, except the judgements are coming towards both him and me.

    Code word is live. The next time I yell Jack Daniels in a public, kid setting, I hope to be rescued!

  • Christina Briggs

    I’ll bring the coke.

  • Julie

    Can WE be friends? My sister-in-law told me one time she loved every second of raising her two daughters, who are now grown. The longer I work at this parenting thing, I’m convinced she’s either delusional or lying. Thanks for the awesome read!

    • Rose gilbert

      Selective memory. We all have it. We remember the good and blur the not so good. It’s what keeps us sane!

    • Anya

      She’s lying – or she’s forgotten

  • Rose gilbert

    Jack Daniels!! Jack Daniels !! JD! JD! Oh yes Please !! 🙂 sign me up now!!!
    I knew I was in trouble when I had the younger two at school for their two older sisters kindergartens field day. My younger 2 ages 3 and 4 where happily playing inte dirt of the unused softball field. Having a blast! building dirt mounds and kicking them down. Digging holes. Spinkling powdery dirt on their legs. Occupying themselves without my intervention. Score!!! I noticed 2 teachers looking at them and whispering so I went to check. Maybe they were gonna need this field soon and I need move them? No. They said to me ” we are just so glad to see a mom that lets her kids get dirty” um. Ok? I did not realize till later what I was really in for. Luckily I never gave any fucks either. I know my kids are not perfect but they are perfect for me
    Love you. Love this blog
    Thanks again

  • paige

    “because you clearly don’t care”

    and look at me not caring that you notice that I don’t care.

  • Anya

    So true! I hate the pissing match. Sometimes, I am an asshole and just straight walk away mid conversation. I like that you say what I think about 900% of the time.

  • Cheryl

    I want this to go viral so I can find some more like-minded moms. Love the blog and love the no-fucks-giving attitude.

  • Erin

    Mother-effing Jack Daniels!! I’m gonna try this at the park today. And hope some non-organic fruit snack giving, dirt allowing, laid back mama comes to my rescue!

  • Liz

    Fucking AMEN. I am 100% behind the motion to make Jack Daniels the bullshit saturation safety word. Hell yes.
    And you are GOOD. And you’re a good mom. And your kids are good people. That’s what it’s about.
    High five

  • Justine

    I love this. Love it. By all judgable standards, my sons are and have always been subpar. They don’t play sports, they’re in a special ed school, and they are 12 and 14 and still like stuffed plush animals and rubber sharks and whoopee cushions and Pokemon. And they are perfect. Mothers who insist on sharing their kids’ brilliance pretend it’s because of their good genes. Truth is, genetics be damned, you get the kids you get. I used to sit through conversations like that. Now I trigger the ringer on my phone, take a “call,” and walk away. Life is too short to sit through bullshit.

    • Emily

      If my kids ever out grow whoopee cushions and laughing at farts? That’s failure. You keep on rocking your awesome kids.

    • Rebecca

      My sons are 18 and 20, and the older one still has a bookshelf full of bionicles and keeps his old PS1 so he can play ancient games – because apparently 20 is old enough for nostalgia. They still laugh at body humor, only now they get the double entendres that used to sail over their heads.

      I used to respond to mommy bragging sessions by saying “My older son is autistic, so I don’t really go in for the whole comparison thing, but good for you for having neuro-typical children.” Fastest way to shut that crap down, and honest to boot. Obviously, I started out with zero fucks to give.

      • Lis

        YES!!! You are my hero.

      • jessica

        <3

    • Libby

      Hey I know where you are coming from, lol

      My boys have never played sports (they are 22 and 17) and the 22 year old still loves Pokemon and got a Pokemon tattoo for his 21st, lol (thankfully it is in a tribal design and not a cartoon – but I would have told him how cool it was even it was a cartoon 😀 ).

      The 22 year old has always had a group of friends that are all a little different .. when they were teens I would refer to them as nerdy (and who ever knew that nerdy was going to be cool!) but now that they are older, they are definitely all what I refer to as ‘a little bit eccentric’. Is there a spectrum for eccentric?

      All kids are what they are … yeah sure parenting has an influence but they just are who they are.

  • Amy DuBois

    Good God, I motherfucking LOVE you! It’s like you’re in my Mommy brain! And I’m probably going to go to hell for using “God” and “motherfucking” in the same sentence. I’ll be your Jack Daniels, my friend. If I’m ever in a park and hear, “JACK DANIELS!” I’ll be running like a line backer to save the maternal dignity of whomever is screaming.

  • Amber

    This is so me. I showed up to my daughter’s 7th grade award’s day at school super late. Like, it was over–the other parents were leaving the auditorium when I got to the auditorium. I actually said “fuck” to the nice teacher who had escorted me to the auditorium. Hey, I tried. I still went in, and my daughter was just as thrilled and embarrassed to see me.

  • Erica dee

    Reading this while nursing. Just got peed on. Day is complete!

  • Renae

    I don’t have kids (yet, maybe never, I don’t know yet), but I love reading your posts. My friends have started having kids and I see what you are talking about happening thanks to Facebook and Instagram and all that oversharing shit that’s happening, and “oh look at this perfect birthday party I threw for my fucking 1 year old with her perfect outfit and this perfect cake.” It’s good to know there are still sane mothers out there in case I ever decide to be one. And clearly I don’t mean sane to mean that your kids aren’t driving you fucking crazy because kids are annoying as hell. I’m an aunt and I love my sister’s kids like nothing else, but it’s so damn nice when I get my house back to my quiet self, or the kids are throwing a tantrum because they are over-tired from not taking a nap and I just say, “sayonara suckers!” Anywho…if I ever have kids I’m in on this Jack Daniels thing 100%.

  • Kate

    I hear you!!! It happens in Australia too – who’d have thought? Supremely annoying. It’s what makes me vehemently dislike parents and go running for my childfree friends. My strategy (more like an involuntary reaction actually) is to just keep making inappropriate jokes about my children / parenting / whatever until the self-righteous parent understands that I am not like them and gives up / leaves me in peace.

    However, when I am feeling more magnanimous (e.g. after lots of sleep, i.e. very infrequently) I try to remind myself that sometimes the self-righteous parents are like that because inside they are struggling with massive self-doubt. And somehow they’ve learned to boost their self-esteem by trying to undermine other people’s. It’s boring for sure, but if I have the energy and time I sometimes try to find some vulnerability in them to connect to and then they become more human. But usually I don’t, so I fall back on the jokes strategy.

  • PhysicsBear

    Do you want to come and live in a village in East Anglia? I would happily answer the call of “Jack Daniels”, if you promise to do the same for me when I get caught listening to the woman who’s got enough airmiles to fly to Australia and back premium class with her husband and children? Or the ones who want to tell me about how their organic free-range hand-reared sausages are sooooo much better than anything from those horrid supermarkets. I hate the bullshit too.

  • Heidi Schulenberg

    JD!!! My 4 boys are named after Kentucky Bourbons so people would just think I was yelling at a cousin or something! I have a (Makers) Mark, Evan (Williams), Elijah (Craig) and Basil (Hayden)! I am so sick of the pissing matches! So true!My 20 yr daughter still lives at home and works at Starbucks. She has failed 50% of her college classes and I suggested she join the Air Force or Army! Winning!

    • Adeline

      Is her name Tequila? I had friends named after alcoholic beverages; they never stopped resenting their mother because everyone assumed she was a lush.

  • Jenn

    where were you when I joined my first play group what seems a million years ago? There were some awesome moms…and some that I wanted to beat upside the head with their homemade baby food stored in a jar they crafted themselves out of Himalayan mud, carried in a Gucci baby bag. Their kids were talking at 3 weeks and translating Chinese at 1 year. Because it’s the next big language you know.

    Jack. Fucking. Daniels.

  • Renee

    This should be required reading for anyone who wants to be my friend.
    My youngest is in middle school and I keep waiting for this to competition to end.
    Learning to politely excuse myself and walk away when I detect when this is about to happen in a conversation.
    You put it perfectly. Thank you!

  • Miki

    “Well developmentally it’s important to engage your children in age-appropriate….”
    Baaaahahahahahhahhahhahahh

    One time when I was a toddler I managed to completely unbutton my anti-bra-wearing mom’s shirt while sitting in the grocery store shopping cart. “MIKI!! I am going to cut your heart out and feed it to the dogs!!” Cue old lady fainting and me giggling.

  • Heather

    “I have fewer fucks to give with each year that passes, and I started with a limited number”

    This could be a great tee shirt/ bumper sticker and is absolutely my life in a nut shell.

  • Kristin

    This is so awesome. My kids are big enough now (9 and 12) that I can safely hide behind a book at the park. 9yo still expects me to wave at him periodically but as long as I see him at the top of whatever-it-is a couple times near the beginning of the playtime, I’m good to read for the rest of the trip. When they were little, though, ye gods I could have used some “Jack Daniels” rescues!

    Has anyone else ever looked surreptitiously around at all the other kids to see which ones wear clothes that don’t match, in order to match them up to the parents who look tired, so you can hang out near those parents and hopefully avoid the scary ones? Sometimes, it works, but a code word would have been wonderful during the toddler years.

  • Robbyn

    And this post is EXACTLY why my bees do not participate in extra curricular Antivirus. I cannot stand the horror.

  • Robbyn

    Fucking autocorrect. Obviously I meant activities but Antivirus does have a nice ring to it. Sigh.

    • katie

      i totes thought that was u being uber-creative 🙂

    • Woodstockgurl

      This for the win!

  • Sara

    I feel ya. My 10mo sleeps for 2 hours at a time from 7pm-1am, then up every hour until 6:30 to nurse. Yep. It’s F*ing brutal. But no plans on sleep training him. He gets what he needs (for now, haha!). I’ll be on high alert for the code word next time I’m at the park!

  • Amelia Claeys

    Jack Daniels! My 15 month old wakes up every 3 hours, nurses constantly day and night and I need someone to bitch about my husband to after my supposedly BFF recently declared she would never say anything bad about her husband because he is her partner in christ. Jack MFing Daniels. Love this post!

  • Janine

    Yes! Yes! A million times yes! I grew up in Marin County, land of the perfect parents, didn’t you know? And then had our first kidlet in SF (not much different parenting-wise.) We’ve moved outta there and I can’t think how glad I am that I don’t have that bullshit anymore – though of course these kind of parents are EVERYWHERE, including where I am now. I feel ya and if I can hear you shout Jack Daniels? I. Am. There.

  • Aimee

    This happened with one of my close friends actually. I was super pumped my 13 month old slept through the night and was congratulating myself and her only comment was “wow, she just barely did that? so and so has been doing that since birth!” Why can’t people just shut the f up and let you enjoy your little victories? My kids are allergic to sleep, ok??!!!

  • itzybellababy

    I am so lucky- the birth center where we had my daughter had birth classes. We met a couple having a baby the same week as us, and we bonded. We DO compare our kids, but when we do, it is so NOT that catty Bs crap.

    It is like- oh yeah, my kid crapped on the floor.. yeah, mine went through that, it stops.. or whatever..

    We have been comparing milestones for 3 years and it is SO nice to have someone that thinks the same as us on things to bounce ideas off of.

    http://www.itzybellababy.com/

  • Nora

    Brilliant. Know what? That happens in reverse, as in, another mom begins making excuses for her kid’s lack of whatever and I didn’t even ask, nor did I even care. I feel bad when that happens.

  • Julie

    this explains it exactly:

    • AnotherMel

      That’s awesome! Needed that laugh – so tempted to post that to my FB page but that’s just asking for the commentary from those extended family members that make me need to yell Jack Daniels!

      • Christy

        AMEN!! AMEN!!! Will I go to hell if I say F&*^*ing AMEN!!!!

        • Leah Noble

          You might but I’ll meet you there. LOL.

    • Trisha

      That’s perfect!! I needed that with my step mother yesterday? unwanted parenting advise comes from EVERYWHERE!

  • H#

    Why? Why do people do that boasting thing, I don;t get it, I would feel like I was being so up myself if I went on like that about how great everything is. I would be thinking “this woman must think I am a complete douche” Why don;t other mums think that?

  • Sharon

    You got them to be silent for 2.5 minutes? That is the most impressive thing I read. I would kill for 2.5 minutes.

  • Amy

    What if I admit that sometimes I am one of THOSE moms? Can I have a codeword to shout and have one of you come and hit me over the head and make me stop? It is the one failing I have as a parent that I care about and wish I could change. Help.

    • christine

      Amy,
      JACKDANIELS can be your codeword too! Like, if you’re doing it, and the mommy you’re talking to starts looking crazed and shouting for whisky, it might be time to stop LOL

  • Jan

    Thanks for the laughs! I love your blog posts and wish this kind of parenting info had been around when I was raising kids. I sure could have used this kind of support!

  • seemomster

    My code word would be “Hendrick’s!” but…yeah. I’ve been there. Now I really and truly AM old (and hoping for a grandbaby some day) but I rememeber. HOLY COW do I remember. Hang tough, dear woman. All one needs is one sarcastic, cranky friend.

  • Tessa

    I’m usually on the other side of that table. I generally like to prove how ghetto fabulous I am as a mother. It’s not even a competition, I’m just a winner in that category.

  • jess

    Yesterday, a man sitting on the park bench scolded me soundly for letting my baby play with a twig. A twig, people. Not a gun. I asked him how many children he has. He said two, and I nodded wryly at my three. And then I took away the baby’s stupid twig. Because I didn’t feel like I had a choice.

    Thank you for posting this because I am now an exhausted mother of three and honestly, I know that the kids will make it. And I know that everyone lies about their kids. And I know that nothing poisons childhood like an anxious hovering parent. But I was starting to wonder if I am actually a negligent mother because I met my kids do things and have things that horrify other parents around here. Thanks for restoring my sense of normal.

    • Julie

      Hi Jess,

      One time, a man came over to me to tell me my baby was cold. Again, we were in a park. She was bundled up like you wouldn’t believe and i knew she was fine (cuz i’m the MOTHER). I ignored him and he wouldn`t let it go. I was trying to keep my cool cuz i was doing a cardio-baby class thing with a group of women. Finally, i screamed at him to leave me alone. I felt like a maniac but it felt good to stand up for myself as a mother! Next time, try it. You might feel like a maniac but at least you won’t feel ashamed for no good reason. Good luck!

  • Carla M

    Oh how I have had this happen to me tooooooo many times. Really tired of these types of Moms. They usually are bragging about their kids because their lives are sad. Nope I keep my head down at parks now. Don’t want to chat about how perfect you think your kids are. Don’t care, big hair!!

  • Trisha

    I am sooooo fucking with you! JACKMOTHERFUCKINGDANIELS!!!!

  • D J Todd

    This is absolutely the best, most truthfully honest writing that I have had the distinct pleasure of reading. I have been a stay at home Dad ever since my sons were 7 and 5. I have been subjected to the Spanish Inquisition by playground mums on too many occasions to count. Following a pattern of my own I looked for the scruffiest kids in the park and suggested that my kids played with them because if they were perfectly clean then they could not be having much fun. My theory is’ if you don’t fall over and scrape your knees and elbows then you haven’t lived’. Our ’emergency’ word was “Daphne”. Simple but effective. If I was ever caught in a ‘situation’ at the park I would look towards one of my sons and call out “Daphne”. Even from a young age they knew that they knew to come to my rescue. It worked well. My kids are now adults with
    kids of their own and I am sure that they are going to use the same sort of rescue word.

  • Kirsten

    Damn! This is why I hated parks…I’d rather play on the swings then have to deal with other moms and their “advice”. And I can’t help but laugh at the image of one lone mom at the center of the park yelling Jack Daniels and all of the “advice” she’d get behind her back. Thanks for the grins.

  • Amy Wright

    OMG! I love this so much. Seriously, I could cry. Reading the comments about f-bombs, vaginas and assholes I feel like I’m home ❤️ Can we be friends?!

  • Peggy

    omg! Jack Daniels!!!

  • Wendy

    This goes back to a previous post you wrote – PEOPLE SUCK!
    I have decided I’d much rather just stay home than deal with most people.

  • Karen Hug

    Awesome post, thank you!!

  • Kristi

    Can we please be best friends?

  • George

    Can I please substitute ‘gin’ for ‘Jack Daniels’? I have a serious taste aversion since an ugly incident at age 16.

  • mbwest

    I’m 54 and have five kids, one of whom is 8yo. The other playground mommies are the age of my older kids. I’m hecka old and goodness, they’re just so serious about so many things that don’t matter! If I yell Jack Daniels down here in Modesto really loud, I’ll bet you could hear it where you live, ’cause you’re not so far away and your hearing hasn’t been stolen by your kids’ teen years yet. lolz…Thanks for the support.

  • mbwest

    I’m 54 and have five kids, one of whom is 8yo. The other playground mommies are the age of my older kids. I’m hecka old and goodness, they’re just so serious about so many things that don’t matter! If I yell Jack Daniels down here in Modesto really loud, I’ll bet you could hear it where you live, ’cause you’re not so far away and your hearing hasn’t been stolen by your kids’ teen years yet. lolz…Thanks for the support.
    And don’t we really all want to chew on the squishy part…down deep inside?

  • Alex

    Plan.
    JD.
    There.

  • Leah Noble

    This song is a breakup song, but personally I’m listening to it and thinking about All The Shit I Want To Let Go Of, like the kinds of conversations and attitudes you’re talking about in this post. I’m just DONE.

    • Elizabeth

      My people! The video was shot in East Vancouver, and is chock full of friends and neighbours and local parents. The shots of moms and kiddos captures the magic of this community, where I feel as though at least 80% of the parents at the park are of the JD version. Also, when the parental pissing match is getting me down, this is my go-to tune. Thanks for posting!

  • Anna Shindler

    Hmmm. I don’t know….reading this made me feel sort of gross. Both of you are being pretty harsh mommy “judgers”. You’re judging her for being a annoying, opinionated, intense “perfect” mommy, and she’s judging you for being more laid back. We all judge. We all talk shit. No one is better than the other. If we truly wanted to “not give any fucks”, we wouldn’t get so worked up about it. I get it, though. I’m super paranoid about how people perceive me as a parent, too. I have an EBD kid that the whole neighborhood dislikes/talks about. I constantly feel the need to prove myself. It sucks. Always trying to “not give any fucks” but its hard, man. Let’s just stop bashing each other, though. That’s a good start.

  • Lucia

    Thank you. My Grandfather, God Rest His Soul, taught me at an early age how to “two-finger” pour JD. If you yell “Jack Daniels” not only will I come running but I’ll bring you a drink.

  • Diane

    Wait, just wait until you have to hear about GRANDCHILDREN……since my own children have chosen not to replicate it is not only nauseating it is painful…..

  • Crissy

    I absolutely stumbled here by accident and I absolutely loved every word you shared. You’re exactly like me! I have been made to feel like a beautiful piece of poop my entire parenting journey. 22 years and 9 more to go. With one lifer child we call ABC #3. I dread parenting (mainly Mommy) interactions because of the stupid vaginal pissing match. Your rendition could have been a day in my busy life. When forced to pretend I’m a Mom who actually wants to interact with the other perfect Moms. I don’t and as I age I actually avoid Mom interactions. I just hate the nasty fake perfection. I hate being judged when I’m totally hippy approach to many kid things. Also with 2 of 4 grown, I know my way works enough hehe. Thank you for sharing. I needed this as I dread our return to life next week. (We’ve been traveling for work, we tell the kids its a vacation.) Anyway if I ever hear “Jack Daniels” spoken at any Mom event. I’ll be looking for the voice behind the words. I’ll be the ‘Used to be pretty, tired looking, mysterious smear on clothing that may not match, hair somewhat fried and recently cut from long to very short still sticking wildly up, not very good makeup Mom’ my children will be the Mini Lady version of me, with the deer in headlights look or trying to guide the giant ABC #3 man sized child she calls big brother through the wash of happy children who usually ignore mine because we are forever strangers to all events. Your awesomeness in the cyber world and I needed this today!

  • Mia

    I also picked my kids’ school for the special ed program. That usually shuts people up. Go ahead and say it. Sometimes you gotta play the sped card, it frees you from the one-up game. “My kid potty trained at 5,and that is fucking awesome!”

  • Kari Jaquith

    So next time I hear a woman in the local park say out loud..”Jack Daniels” I am going to go over and totally bail her out. Thankfully my kids are grown up (not grown ups mind you) but I am good with helping out when needed.

  • Julie

    Favorite thing i heard all Spring: ‘I have fewer fucks to give with each year that passes, and I started with a limited number’. Thank you for that.

  • Laura

    I loved this post and am stalking the comments, haha! The stories are way entertaining.

    I noticed, though, that there’s some serious hate going on for people who are careful about their kids’ food, or those who practice attachment parenting…etc. I don’t think we’re talking about giving two shits about other parents’ personal choices. Making fun of someone for their personal choices isn’t cool, either.
    I mean, someone who’s making and feeding her kid homemade baby food isn’t preparing that food AT you. She’s just doing her thing. The annoyance comes from those who do that and then butt into your life and tell you how you should be doing it too, or who brag about it (or who HUMBLE-brag about it, which is even worse)!

  • Stephanie johnson

    I can’t believe someone actually asked about insurance and said you didn’t care about your kid!!!! I am totally a Jack Daniels mom and get into these matches with women who are supposedly my friends…even after years of beings friends this still happens even when I know they are totally bullshitting and just trying to look better than me and my kids…I would of totally told that lady to fuck off when she said I didn’t care about my kid…good luck In your future matches lol

  • Kristen

    Yay for special ed! I wish my son could play with Rocket. Jack Daniels! I’ll be the mom at the park with my nose so deep in a book you can’t see my face. I look forward to your posts. Keep writing!

  • Rachel @ The Mama Files

    Those mom missiles at the playground ain’t got nothing on a judgey McJudge mother’s group. Just sayin’ 🙂

  • Dawn

    I just found all the stuff in my head right here.

  • Amy

    Amen, love this whole thing – especially the ear-chewing/squishy part comment. Color me impressed.

  • Grouchiegrrl

    Doubt you would like paleo-bacon – it tastes exactly the motherfucking same but costs $30 a kilo (on a side note, how funny was that presidential candidate recently who is running on a platform to take the US metric).

  • Jennelle

    I’m pretty sure I’ll start using this just hoping that some of you fine folks are out there with me.

  • Tina

    I know EXACTLY what you mean. Well, I always felt sort of inferior because my former sister in law was the artsy craftsy mom, the mom that had no problem waking up early enough not to be rushed getting the kids out the door (this problem continued from when it started, in the early 2000’s until the most recent high school graduation last month), and considered getting up at 8 am “sleeping in” – and that was when her kids were at an age that she DIDN’T have to get up with her kids anymore. I have one set of grandparents that for years, couldn’t stop comparing my youngest son’s academics to my oldest son’s, until we just stopped telling them about grades, about school, about any of that. My own sister even made me feel inadequate (oh, not DIRECTLY, it was IMPLIED) because both of her high school graduate boys are doing so well and working so hard, and my 20 year old, well, isn’t, not compared to her hardworking boys, despite how fucked up she was when she was raising them (although their childhood was fucked up, she was always a good mother). So, JACK DANIELS, I got your back, girl, even if my kids are older than playground fodder. Events with extended family members get like that, too – one of the mothers has to get all like that, no matter what family you’re in.

  • theelsoms4

    Thank you for the entertainment. I choose to avoid the perfectly made up mommies, in their perfectly clean cars, seriously they must get up at 5am just to do their hair!! Life is too short to waste time conversing with the ‘i’m perfect, my kids are perfect brigade’. I live in Canada (originally from UK), my kids go to a good Catholic school, I am not Catholic and as my husband found out four years ago she I asked his perfect psychology lecturing mother for his certificate, neither is he, oh how I chortled. My youngest has delays, seems to be constantly fighting sleep or an illness/bug of some description, but you now what we are surviving, not everyone is happy all of the time but you know what my kids like to climb trees, put bugs in jars (took one in to share with their classes, teachers were a bit freaked), fight to get in the front seat, don’t swear and have manners, we are winning. ?

  • Brigitte Wallace

    You speak to me and articulate what I think but cant say or write. Few fucks to give and 1 1/2 year old night nursing. A mom of one toddler and i can already relate. I prefer ” I feel your pain land” versus ego contests. Fuck the judgements, cuz judging and expectations create your own misery. Jack Daniels it is!

  • Cheryl S.

    JACK DANIELS!!!!!!!!

  • Stephanie Lormand

    I once responded to the “aren’t you worried he’s going to fall” with a shrug and a “meh, I don’t really care.”

    I made LOTS of friends that day. 😉

  • Rebekah

    Can I steal “Jack Daniels” as a 40-something single, childless woman who is constantly being told about someone’s kid’s wedding. About how she found him “when she stopped looking.” “Maybe we should pray for a husband for you?” “Are you right with God? Until you’re right with HIM, HE won’t send you a husband.” “Don’t you want to have kids?”

    JD, please?!

  • Travis

    Your posts are always so real…love it. Thanks.

  • Momof3

    I adore the way how you word my feelings and thoughts. With this post, again, you nailed it.

    One day later I understood that I AM THAT MOM, who would wonder, “why has she just said Jack Daniels?”

    Thanks for the lesson.

    I almost said to you: “We are going for one week vacation to the sea in a fantastic house only 100 meters from the shore, but I have no idea how I will pack up our kids, the bio meat and my Vitamix.”

    Yep, I am so ridiculous.
    I will try to take myself less seriously.

  • Amy

    Ok, so I thought it said “Why does my car smell like old nipples?” and couldn’t concentrate much after that. lol so I’ll be the one yelling “OLD NIPPLES!” when I’m stuck in a biggest vagina conversation. Come find me. Please. 😉

  • Linda

    chew on the squishy part–love it!

    one of mine wants to grow up and be a tea set.

    i think we’re neighbors.

  • Jen

    Laughed so hard I peed my pants. Thank you for articulating the precise feeling I get around “those” moms. For Pete’s sake, it’s SAND. Stop freaking out! Serenity NOW…Jack Daniels!

  • Isabel

    What sucks even more is when they are related to you by marriage and there is not enough Jack Daniels to make them go away.

  • Libby

    Yeah, well I have smart kids but they are so damn lazy that they don’t excel at all! So hey, you don’t hear me bragging, because then I feel guilty that my kids don’t try … which of course MUST be my fault right??

    Somehow though I never had these type of mums around me when my kids were younger … after reading this I have to wonder if I was just lucky, or, in hindsight maybe I slipped the f bomb early enough in conversations that they just kept away from me LOL!

  • Emily

    Can you yell loud enough to be heard in San Antonio? (I mean, you probably can; you’ve got four kids.) I’ll fly to your side! It’ll be a great escape from whatever I’ve gotten stuck in, anyway.

    Whatever, my dad and his first wife had four kids all born two years apart, and their mom finally decreed that there would be no complaining except on Wednesdays, so my sister went two days before telling anyone she broke her arm. Because it was Monday. I’m not even judging.

    • Emily

      Oh, yeah, and I still wear my maternity clothes because they’re fucking comfortable, dammit, and I think “Fuck” is an effective enough safe word if you can’t get enough of a break in the conversation to fit in “Jack Daniels”.

  • Steph

    I love reading your post. Keeps me feeling human! I am going to start yelling out for “Jack Daniels” rescues. Love love love!

  • ozymandias

    Remember that post you had a while back saying “mean girls” isn’t a thing? Guess what? Daddies aren’t doing this shit. If you get a group of us together we do not convene an ad-hoc judgement Olympics. Lol @ no mean girls. Hell, you guys *still* do it into middle age.

  • Desiree

    Thank you for posting this! Please clone yourself so everyone will have you as their best friend! I just stay away from people like that. I can spot the a mile away. I feel bad for them though they are wound so tight one day they are going to bust and it won’t be pretty

  • Jess

    Can we make the shirt thing real????? For the love of GAWD, let’s make it real. One hand – I can’t handle anymore perfect mommy bs. I can’t. Other hand – I f*cking do it myself sometimes!!! I don’t even realize it,then it slaps me in the face like a dead fish and I want to die of shame.

    I don’t really drink, so wearing a shirt that says ‘Jack Daniels’ might be too much for me, but even if I have to take an over sized wife beater and old house paint – to write JD (do you know Jack?) I’m doing this shirt thing.

    You’re not alone. I’m here! With my messy kids, bio hazard house, and nagging/don’t give a flying f*ck parenting style. Yeah, my kid just pissed her pants, AGAIN. No, I’m not buying pull ups cuz they don’t work for her. Maybe it’s just my kids, but they don’t work for us. You use them! Love them! Marry them! Take my share! Just quit telling me how to potty train my kid. She likes to pee her pants. It’s cool. #igavethefuckup

    I’m here. I’m saying sometimes I do NOT like my children. I’d kill for them, but today I don’t like them. I’m saying I can’t handle the two I have but I sometimes long to have another tiny baby I made from scratch.

    I’m here! Let’s find each other! I will be rocking the JD on a white shirt in Aurora, CO. Look for me, I will be the mama carrying two hundred pounds of shit, one kid will be crying cuz he is afraid of the splash park & the other one will have just peed down her leg again.

    Real people unite!!!!!!!

    #thisblogmakesmefeelsane

  • Stephony

    What about “Jacki Daniels”? Otherwise, in my commnity, nearly every man in the town would think he was in the group without understanding the required action when the call of duty is shouted 🙂

    I really enjoyed your spot-on observations. May I have your permission to repost this on my site?

  • Claire Brooks

    Love it Love it! Love it!!!Jack Daniels!!!

  • Kris

    I fucking love you!

  • Jessie Kernan

    JACK FUCKING DANIELS!!!

    I love you, you seriously make me feel sane… Maybe I’m not the only mom who is VERY aware that I am a shit-ass mom most days.