Posts Filed Under nothing to do with parenting.

Bath & Body Works kinda smells like ass

by Janelle Hanchett


I didn’t really wear make-up until I was in college.

I got into that whole cute-clothes-shopping thing at about the same time.

I got my first boyfriend when I was 16.

My hair was down to my waist by the time I was 12 because I didn’t cut it. That was my hair-styling method: don’t cut it.

Pedicures didn’t enter my life until I was around 25 (and they come way too rarely) and manicures have never quite made the cut. Ha ha. Nice pun.

What I’m trying to say is…it took me a long time to get into the whole “girly” thing – and I have never completely entered it.

This is not because I think I’m above it or a feminist or anarchist or whatever. Though obviously, women are better than men. Duh. It’s because it just isn’t my thing – just naturally not really my deal, from the beginning. But I am into some girly stuff. I wear make-up with relative frequency, I get my hair done (every 6 months whether I need it or not!) at salons that charge approximately one month’s rent – and I have a minor boot problem. Also jackets. But mostly boots.

At one point I had a small obsession with gift bags.

Let’s talk about something else.

And I dig getting dressed up. Like twice a year.

But there a few girly things that I just don’t understand on any level. A lot of it (lots of make-up, heels, matching purses, exercise, shaving, etc.) I’m just too lazy for, but I understand the theory behind them. Some things, though, are a complete no-go. I look, I watch, I wonder.

I try to understand, but I fail.

For example, fruit-smelling lotions and sparkles.

So basically, everything at Bath and Body Works.

Raspberry scented lotion with glitter.


Yes, right after I vomit on myself after applying it. I mean some of that shit is horrid. I like eating fruit, not smelling like it. I walked into that store the other day with Ava to purchase something for a birthday present and I was slammed with the sparkly-ness of it all.

Freaking GLITTER everywhere. All this pink and cursive and gold curly ques. I felt an almost visceral reaction…wanted to cry out “Mommmmyyyyy. Help. Get me outta here.”

In short, some of that shit stinks – such overkill.

Now, now. I’m not judging people who use “Jingle Bellini Shimmer Mist” or “Strawberry Sparkler Shower Gel” or “Pink Sugarplum Fragrance Spray”. I don’t care. And some people I love dearly use that stuff. I just cannot relate to how it’s appealing on an actual nose level. It smells so overwhelming to me – like a big, thick, shimmering mask of SUGAR.

The sweetness of it gives me a headache. I sound like an old person.

And I do a lot of things. But I don’t really sparkle. There ain’t a whole lotta “Sparkling Berry Bliss” in my life.

I mean when I hear names like “Marshmallow Fireside” or “Frosted Cupcake” or “Ribbon Candy” I think porn, not lotion.

Not that I watch porn, cause I don’t. I’m lucky if I get 15 minutes of television a week, I’ll be damned if I’m gonna waste it staring at women who are skinnier than me.

How’d we get on the porn topic?

Oh right. Frosted Cupcakes.

I’ll frost your cupcake.


Sooooo…admittedly I like the Lavender Vanilla, and my friend had a Vanilla Bean lotion that was nice, but most of that stuff is just too sweet for me, and, well, kinda smells like ass.

It was weird being in there, walking around all this stuff that was supposed to apply to me (as a female), but felt so unappealing and foreign – and as I strolled around a little awkwardly an old familiar feeling crept in – you know, that one that tells me there’s something wrong with me because I’m not interested in “Cinnamon Raisin Cookie” lotion, or sparkles. Or raspberry lip gloss. And I never have been.


I used to look at these other girls and wonder “how do they just know how to do this make-up thing?” How do they know how to dress? How to be cool?

What boat did I miss and where can I find it now?

I tried for awhile, to find it, to shove myself into glitter and fake nails, but it just didn’t work.

I felt more awkward pretending than I did just embracing my non-“Candied-Sugar-Plum” self.

The only difference between then and now is that I now embrace my geek-hood. I’m okay with being, well, I don’t know. Whatever I am.

I’m okay with not getting it. With looking at society’s depiction of femininity and just knowing I ain’t that and a lot of us aren’t and I don’t really know how to dress and if my purse matches it’s coincidental – and my nails are usually not pretty and my gray hairs are starting to show and I don’t know what the fuck to do with myself in Bath & Body Works.

Now leave me alone so I can go douse myself in “Sweet Cinnamon Pumpkin” body cream.

I just threw up a little. I did.


Well, not all of America.

20 Comments | Posted in nothing to do with parenting. | December 12, 2011

it all started with a bottle of Bacardi and a razor

by Janelle Hanchett

Tomorrow my husband turns 30.

Yes, baby boy. I know. I know.

I robbed the cradle. When I met him he had just turned 19. I was 21. I thought if I got a young one I could mold him into whatever I wanted.

I thought wrong.

Actually that’s not how it happened. I didn’t really choose him. He was sort of chosen for me, by whatever it is that determines that sort of thing. We met and the whole thing felt like “oh, you’re here, okay,” and that was it. We were together. There was no dating or uncomfortableness or discussion. We were just together. I loved him completely and totally, immediately.

And I love him now.

When I met him he was a scrawny fro-headed ranch boy with a giant overgrown untrimmed beard and the warmest brown eyes I’ve ever seen, and eye-lashes that brushed the tops of his cheeks. The first night we met (we were partying at my house) I couldn’t really tell what he looked like due to excessive facial hair, so I got him drunk and shaved his beard off. (Don’t say I’m not classy.) He kept calling my “Jennifer” or some nonsense and I kept shaving. I saw that he was indeed handsome, and confident and a smart-ass, and kind, but it wasn’t all that that made me try to convince him to not leave (incidentally he stayed, passed-out face-down on my futon). Romance is the word you’re looking for. Romance.

It was something else that drew me to him.

Something I can’t really describe.  Something like coming home. Something like settling down next to your best friend, who, incidentally, happens to be the hottest male to ever cross this good planet.

Eleven years later he is no longer scrawny, though pretty much every other feature remains unscathed. He’s a grown man with broad (gorgeous) shoulders and his pants fit (mostly) and his hair is (usually) contained, and I think it’s pretty safe to say the man is strikingly handsome, but all that held me then – all that I can’t quite put my finger on – all that pulled me close to this stranger – holds me now.

You see, Mac comes from the old school. There’s something about him one doesn’t find very often anymore among people in our generation (and younger).

The man works.

He works.

He serves his family with fierce loyalty.

He works all day as an iron-worker, gets home and takes his kids to the park.

He doesn’t stray. He doesn’t complain. He doesn’t feel like it’s somebody else’s job (whatever that is). He gets up and helps. In short, he’s a fucking badass who’s got nothin’ to prove and works on behalf of his family because it’s who he is, it’s what he does. He devotes himself to us. For us. Unceasingly.

I have an incredible amount of respect for this man.

By the way, if I hear one more story about the jackass unemployed deadbeat husband who sits around the house all day playing video games and drinking beer while the wife works 2 jobs, picks up the kids then comes home to make him dinner and clean the house…fuck me people…I’m going to lose it…but I digress.

Anyway, I’m not trying to brag or flaunt or claim I know how a “man” should act – all I’m saying is I believe I am damn lucky to have a husband who works with unflinching energy, who sees his wife and children as his whole life, who wakes up with the baby at 5am on his days off no matter what, so the wife can sleep in – who knows how to lift iron beams, fix shit, AND cradle a newborn.

Yeah, his fingers are black from grease. And it’s not rare for him to have chicken blood in his ear (he raises free-range chickens in addition to iron-working and butchering on his dad’s ranch). And he quite often smells a little funky. And he’s gone a lot, working.

And he’s about as neat as a flea market. And he has a startling lack of interest in postcolonial theory.

But I stand in awe of him. Every day I find myself thinking “Wow. Doesn’t he get tired? How does he DO that?”

[Well, that, and “how can somebody look that good in overalls?”]

If we’re all hanging out and somebody realizes they forgot something at the car, he’s the first to volunteer to go get it, even though it’s a ½ mile away. He just jumps up and does it. I look around and think to myself “huh, sucks to be you. Now leave me alone and let me enjoy myself.”

Last weekend in Monterey, he got up with Georgia at 5am (even though we both went to bed at 1am) and proceeded to pack her up in the stroller and walk outside, for TWO hours, around the streets of Monterey, so I could sleep. I didn’t even ask him.

I mean who does that shit? And if they do it, who does it willingly?

Lost art, in my opinion. Most dudes I know are lazy-asses just like me. There’s no way in hell I’d do the things he does without at least a few minutes of whining and then, if I did do it, I’d hold it over your head for, oh, I don’t know, forever.

You would owe me for pretty much the rest of your life.

But he doesn’t even bring it up later – and 15 minutes after he gets back to the hotel room, when I still haven’t had enough sleep and I’m cranky and pissed off he says “Janelle calm the fuck down,” then he hands me the coffee and scone he brought me. Even though he could, he never dangles his efforts over my head, you know…“but I just took the baby for 2 hours on a walk around the cold streets of Monterey, what the hell are you complaining about?”

“Nothin’, honey.”

I’m not complaining about anything.

Thank you, my husband.

Thank you, Mac.

Happy 30th Birthday. I’m glad you’re on this planet. I’m glad we found each other.

You are my heart.



And then she started inventing bumper stickers…

by Janelle Hanchett

There’s really no appropriate introduction for this, except to say that, for funsies, I decided to create a few bumper stickers. You know, things I would put on my car, were I not afraid of getting mowed down by some irate stranger.

By the way, if you are easily offended or sensitive or believe some things are sacred and should just not be made fun of openly on the internet, I suggest you skip this post. No really. I warned you…I’ll give you a chance to think about it…

Still here?

Good. I knew you’d stay.

That’s why we’re friends.

















Okay seriously. Should we print one of these?

Idiot Surfing, Volume II

by Janelle Hanchett

So that didn’t take long. We already have material for a new volume of Idiot Surfing.

Today we’re featuring a Facebook post that asked people to complete the sentence “I suspected I was a crunchy parent when…” And as you can imagine, there are some real winners.

Please note: I have nothing against crunchy parenting. In fact, on paper, I’m pretty damn granola myself. But doesn’t it seem that the crunchies are by far the most judgmental parents? Maybe I’m wrong, but it appears that there’s an air of pretension surrounding the attachment-parenting thing – which seems weird, doesn’t it? Hypocritical? Since we”re supposed to be the “enlightened,” “accepting” ones? Ah, the complexities.

Whatever. Who gives a shit. Let’s make fun of ‘em. Here we go. I suspected I was a crunchy parent when…

“…my daughter looked in horror when she a woman feeding her child “poison” in a bottle!” – Really, lady? Really? Poison? Effing POISON? Could you just try for one single moment to enter the realm of the reasonable? POISON? Rat killer is poison. Chemicals are poison. Napalm is poison. Formula (you self-important small-minded jackass) is NOT poison. What if that woman can’t breastfeed? What if the baby can’t breastfeed? What if the baby was adopted? ARGH. It’s people like you that make me a closeted crunchy mother.

“…I cried at the mere mention of giving my baby formula.” – Yes. It’s one of the great tragedies of the world. War, child abuse, cancer, and formula feeding.

“…I didn’t want to pass my baby around and let others hold him.” – Hey dumbshit. That makes you paranoid and possessive, not crunchy. The crunchies aren’t afraid of germs. They love germs. Germs are organic. Duh.

“… I decided to breastfeed … co-bathe…child-led parent.” – What the hell is “co-bathing?” Are you telling me that each and every night at 7pm you strip down and get in the bath with your baby? You have too much time on your hands, that’s all. And “child-led parenting”? Holy hell, that’s a good idea. Here’s what “child-led” parenting would look like in my house:

Me, to my 5-year-old son: “Hey Rocket, what are you doing?”

Rocket: “I’m putting my penis in a funnel.”

Me: “But you’re supposed to be eating dinner.”

Rocket: “This is more fun. I’m doing this instead.”

Me, being a “child-led parent:” “Well okay, then. Does it fit?”

[2 hours pass]

Rocket: “Mama, I’m hungry!”

Me: “Okay, go eat the dinner you didn’t eat 2 hours ago. By the way, what are you doing with the cat?”

Rocket: “Oh, I tied her paws together with pipe cleaners and stuck her in this pillow case and now I’m going to tow her around behind my dump truck. She likes it.”

Me, being a “child-led parent”: “Very nice, honey! Excellent creativity. I support you in your ideas and free-play, so have fun and, if possible my sweet bundle of lovely, try not to kill our kitty, mmmmkay?”

(Okay so I have no idea what “child-led” parenting is for real, but it sounds bad. I mean shit, if kids could parent themselves, why would they need parents?)

“… our favorite music is the sound of the wind in the trees.” – Yeah, hate to break it to you, but the sound of wind in the trees is not music. It’s the sound of the wind, in.the.trees. That is all.

“…I can’t travel because I don’t have my refrigerator and pantry with all organic fresh foods.” – Oh sweet Jesus where do I begin? You’re just an idiot. Just an idiot. There is nothing else to say. No way to expand. Except I should mention that your kids are undoubtedly going to hate you, partly for sheltering them from the world because it couldn’t provide “organic fresh foods,” but mainly just because you’re an idiot.

The end.


While waiting for the next edition of Idiot Surfing, perhaps you could donate 2 clicks to a super worthy cause. There are only four more days. And then, since I’ll probably never be nominated for anything again, I’ll leave you alone forever. Well, on this particular topic.


My hero wears a neon green headband.

by Janelle Hanchett

I love geeks.

Because check it out. Geeks are never actually geeks. We all know this. Isn’t this the first profound observation any of us make – that non-conformity is actually cool and “being cool” is totally uncool, since it means subscribing to a set of arbitrary rules created by masses of the general population, which, we all know, is comprised of idiots.

And yet we think if we have this one thing we’re gonna be cool and people are gonna look at us and say “oh look. A cool guy.”

Let’s take a moment and reflect on Tyler Durden. “You are not your job…you are not how much money you have in the bank…not the car you drive…not the contents of your wallet. You are not your fucking khakis.”

Thanks, Tyler.

The thing is that I appreciate anybody and everybody who is just doin’ their own thing. Unless their “own thing” involves hurting people. Those people can suck it. I mean just living. Doing what they please. Enjoying things because they enjoy them, not because they think it’s the thing to do. Doing what THEY think is cool, whatever that may be.

Take, for example, this guy:


 I freaking love him. There is no possible way an individual could get more “geeky” than this guy, and I know people were walking by judging the hell out of him. Good Lord almighty he’s wearing neon green head & wrist bands & sunglasses to match the neon green accent on his shorts. And he’s greased up and all tan playing volleyball.

And he’s LOVING IT. And therefore, I love him. He’s rockin’ it people. He’s owning who he is and what he is and he’s got no shame or qualms about it and THAT my friends makes him a bonified badass. He’s the Tyler Durden of the beach scene. He’s just having fun, giving a quiet “fuck you” to all those hipsters out there with their fedoras and bad attitudes. He’s matching. He’s sweaty and covered in sand.

He’s my hero.

We saw him at the beach and had to photograph him we loved him so much. And I figured I could put him on my blog since his face isn’t showing. Plus I highly doubt he reads my blog.

But if by some chance he is reading this, let me just say “Cheers to you, matching neon green accessories volleyball player guy.” (Yes, I was hailing those Budweiser commercials.)

You give me hope.

You are a guiding beacon of light to all of us wannabe geeks.

And someday, if I ever grow a pair, I’ll wear coordinating shorts, wrist & headbands. Until then, I’ll just respect the hell out you for just not giving a shit.

10 Comments | Posted in nothing to do with parenting. | August 31, 2011