How do I put this delicately… Jenny Mollen, aka @jennyandteets on Twitter or @jennyandteets2 on Instagram, is fucking awesome. Her new book, Live Fast, Die Hot is a collection of real and relatable essays
about her life adjusting to being a mom to her toddler Sid, being a writer and nanny employer, being the daughter/boyfriend to a looped out dad, and dealing with her completely narcissistic man-eating mom. Her husband Jason Biggs (from Orange Is the New Black or of course American Pie) also plays a starring role in the book and she portrays him as both cutting and incredibly endearing. Throughout the book, he manages to fully support Jenny’s bizarre adventures and quirks while conveniently steering clear of the carnage (most of the time).
The book completely disarmed me with its first chapter, “First Comes Miscarriage.” Jenny somehow straddles sardonic humour with vulnerability. I admittedly welled up reading about her unexpected sadness over the miscarriage of a baby she didn’t particularly want at first. In this chapter, Jason’s character absolutely melts your heart; he’s the hopeful, bright eyed, naive baby daddy any girl could hope for and his bitter disappointment over her miscarriage could defrost the coldest of book critics’ hard hard hearts. Her emotional journey in this opening chapter is transparent and honest without being sappy or hard to digest. Love.
When Jenny writes about her dog Teets, who sadly recently passed away (RIP Teets), it adds so much depth and is so hilariously relatable for anyone who’s owned a dog and then subsequently had a child. Before I had my now toddler V, I had Mac Daddy, my English bulldog and the man I introduced as the love of my life. Yeah, my husband DC enjoyed that. Of course, now V and my 6 month old G are the loves of my life and hubby DC is fourth in line for the throne. Don’t “aww” for him, he’s dealing with it. Anyways, Jenny mirrors this sentiment and shares her pre-Sid completely boundary-free relationship with Teets as if it’s the most normal thing on earth. Her self-awareness in how freakishly bizarre these dog-owner relationships are makes her account particularly laugh-worthy.
In the essay “Hell Is Other People’s Children,” Jenny totally nails the exhausting and stressful world of mom dating. You know, finding mom friends who don’t make you want to stab a rusty screwdriver through your eye when they talk about their kids’ bowel movements or food dislikes for the 50th time. She joins Tinder just to pick up other moms (can this please become a thing?) and when that doesn’t pan out she starts trolling hot parks in NYC checking out seemingly available moms then strategizing her approach as if she’s sidling up to them in a smoky bar. Brilliant. No one has ever summed up mom dating as well as she does. And no one has summed up mom dating gone wrong like she does when the mom she goes out with, whom she names Ombre, ditches her borderline psychotic son at the park, leaving Jenny to watch him, as she disappears for nearly an hour to get a slice of pizza. Jenny’s panic and outrage is perfect: “‘I’m supposed to be watching you!’ I called after him. ‘You need to stay in this general area, please! Would you like to stay in this general area now or five seconds from now?’ Forrest zigzagged around the park like a demented Roadrunner. Parents looked at me and shook their heads disapprovingly. Sid burst into spontaneous laughter, like a person pretending to get a joke he didn’t understand.”
And oh, yeah, and she also nails “wife material” at the beginning of this essay when she nonchalantly suggests a threesome and then writes, “The truth was a threesome sounded exhausting. But at the very least it was something exciting to talk about. It’s important in long-term relationships to have common interests that aren’t just pedicures and documentaries on farm-to-table cooking.” Biting and so damn true. Is there anything (or anyone, for that matter) @jennyandteets2 can’t nail? Doubt it.