If Javascript is disabled browser, to place orders please visit the page where I sell my photos, powered by Fotomoto.
Powered by Squarespace
« A Great Photograph | Main | The Street Photographer »

Panic on the Shelves of Bookstores

For some reason which the universe has yet to explain to me, despite the fact that as far as I know I do not have any children (yet), I often get added to Mommy Blogger lists. I have about as much to say about parenthood* as a sack of rice, and yet on Twitter I’m added to lists called “parenting” and “mommy bloggers attack.” I receive emails from PR companies about toy recalls, for Pete's sake.

*That is, of course, unless we’re talking about the film Parenthood, about which I have MUCH to say.

And yet I do not have children. I sleep in on Saturdays. I have an apartment filled with scissors on low shelves, shelves that aren’t secured to the wall with brackets. So I know next to nothing about parenting. But what I do know is that as soon as you’re about to have your first kid, you don’t know anything about parenting either, so you stock up on self-help books that tell you everything you need to know that could possibly go wrong with your child. Which strikes me a bit like feeling around in the dark for sharp objects with people shouting at you to turn LEFT! No, RIGHT! Warmer... hot... HOTTER... Ouch.

Enter Alice Bradley and Eden Kennedy, two lovely ladies (and, full disclosure: ladies I consider friends) who have written Let’s Panic About Babies: 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, the book that reminds us that you can’t have “self-help” without “hel.” (And “elf”?) This book turns on the light in that dark room of sharp objects. Where am I going with this? Let’s let Orson Welles explain further:

Don’t trust dead Orson? How about Mary Roach, who calls Let’s Panic About Babies “brilliant, funny, fabulous. Every pregnant human being should have a copy.” I don’t care if you’re pregnant or not: if Mary Roach calls it brilliant, it’s brilliant.

Do yourself a favor: buy a copy of this book for your currently gestating friends. Buy a copy of this book if you still have working ovaries. Buy a copy of this book if someone has ever pointed at you and shouted “BREEDER!” Or just buy a copy of this book because you like The Breeders!

(Seven dollars and seventy-two cents if you click on that link above. I spend more than that every week on cheese. Which, apparently, if eaten unpasteurized whilst pregnant leads to babies being born with seven eyes. It’s true. I read it in a book.)

* * *

While I’m here and pointing you towards things I think you should read, I thought I’d let you know about the short-term future of this blog. I’ve started to feel like blogging has become very insular. Like I’m shouting into my hat. Tumblr has felt more satisfying because it’s a better forum for discussion and sharing. I miss sharing links with you, amazing things I’ve read that you might not discover on your own. In the meantime, two very important projects on my plate have not been benefitting from my full attention, and every hour I spend writing here is an hour less devoted to these projects. (Hint: these projects don’t involve Todd Rundgren, Gidget, or pickling.) As a result, I may not be writing here as much over the next few months, but I’ll try to start sharing again. Beautiful things I’ve read, hilarious things, ponderous things. These things will often appear without my own commentary; perhaps just a little babbling brook of excerpts. Stay tuned, boppers... 

© Zan McQuade. All rights reserved.

Reader Comments (1)

I'm several years off from having children of my own, but tempted to buy this just because Mary Roach told me to, and I freaking love her. Thanks for sharing. Also, sorry to hear you'll be posting less often, but looking forward to the link shares.

March 14, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKerry

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.

My response is on my own website »
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong>