An unfiltered fire hose of flaming condemnation

Grand total of 78,215 words

Today is the first day of the rest of my life.

Last night I emailed my finished manuscript to my editor in New York, and then I drove downtown, took off all my clothes and ran naked through Temple Square. There was no other appropriate response. Except maybe I should have taped some sparklers to my boobs. [making mental note for future instances of streaking]

I’m not sure what I want to do with the next hour of my life, or even the next ten minutes. I COULD DO ANYTHING. I mean, this whole process started three years ago, and it got really intense a year ago when the deadlines were written in ink on a contract, and since then every single minute of my life has been heavy with the thought of those deadlines. I felt guilty if I took five minutes to read a magazine because I should have been using those five minutes to write my book. I felt like I was walking around with a 500-pound llama sitting on my face, and it hadn’t bathed in several weeks.

So I know it’s not over, because this is when the work really begins, when my editor takes his red pen to the Word document and starts crossing out entire paragraphs and makes notes in the margin like, “YOU ARE DUMB,” or, “SIT ON IT.” But just making it this far was so thrilling that last night I turned to Jon and said, you know what? Tomorrow I’m going to take an entire hour and organize my sock drawer! AND I’M NOT EVEN GOING TO FEEL GUILTY ABOUT IT. That’s how out of control I was.

The following paragraph seems out of context, but trust me, it will all make sense and we will hug at the end.

There’s this show on MTV called “Rob and Big,” and I know there’s nothing more annoying than hearing someone talking about a television show you don’t watch, except maybe having to sit there while someone tells you about the dream they had last night, but pay attention because this is important. Rob is this tiny professional skateboarder who lives in LA and Big is his huge bodyguard, and the show follows them around as they do every stupid thing a 14-year-old boy wishes he could do if only he had the money. And it is our favorite show on television, and one night we’re sitting there watching it unable to breathe because we’re laughing so hard, and I’m all, I’M NOT SUPPOSED TO FIND THIS FUNNY. What is wrong with me? I didn’t like 14-year-old boys when I was a 14-year-old girl, so why was I identifying with this show now? I totally wanted to break up with me.

There’s one specific episode where the two of them are driving through a car wash and an Enrique Iglesias song comes on, and Rob reaches down and turns the car stereo up as loud as it will go and starts singing along like crazy, as if he had written the song himself, and he’s moving his arms to the rhythm like a lunatic. And Big is sitting in the passenger seat, perfectly calm, quietly mouthing the words, nodding his head almost imperceptibly. Jon paused the show and said, this is it, this is why we love this show so much. THAT IS OUR MARRIAGE RIGHT THERE.

It was like a truckload of bricks fell on top of my head. He was exactly right. And if you’ve ever wondered what it’s like in our house on a day-to-day basis, all you have to do is turn on that show, watch Rob come up with some deranged scheme, like I KNOW! Let’s go buy a miniature horse and let it live in our living room! And Big will nod, scratch his chin, maybe shrug his shoulders just a tiny bit, and say, whatever, I only work here.

So last night I downloaded that specific Enrique Iglesias song the second I was done with my manuscript and then went nuts with my set of propellor arms in the kitchen while Jon stood in the corner and bobbed his head to the rhythm. Leta joined me on the dance floor, and Chuck and Coco just wandered around in manic circles like, I don’t know what’s going on, but maybe this is what happens right before bacon falls out of the sky.

  • Mandy

    “Let me tell you ’bout my best friend … he’s a warm-hearted person who’ll love me ’til the end.”

    I think the theme song should describe every marriage. Oh, and congratulations, Son!

  • Those who haven’t seen the show are going to think you made up the mini-horse situation as an example. But, NO, they actually bought a mini-horse. And, oh my gosh, we love that show, too.

    Super big congrats on finishing the MS.

  • Congratulations!
    That opening scene of Rob & Big is one of my favorite moments in the entire series so far. My friends & I all want to hang out with them, and we’re all in our early 30’s!

  • Jen

    I LOVE ROB AND BIG! Big’s funny eye freaks me out sometimes, but I love it! Fav episode is Big’s family reunion! I even watch it online I love it so much. I even entered a little contest to get to meet them, obviously I didn’t win!
    Here’s the kicker….I am 29 years old! LOL
    Congrats on getting your book in!

  • Heather congratulations!

    Take a deep breath and enjoy the moment – for we who have lived past the age of beer & Cheerios know the next freight train will be by momentarily.

    Looking forward to the book!


  • Oh man, I TOTALLY use the word-count feature whenever I’m writing something on deadline. It’s the only way I get through sometimes — okay, only 500 words to go…now 487…now 423!…

  • Rhea

    So many congratulations i’m sending your way!

  • Liz

    Congratulations! I look forward to getting my hands on it- make sure it’s available overseas.

  • Shannon

    You’re so cool Heather. I can’t wait to buy your book! I wish you so much success!

  • We love that show!!! Mostly because I am obsessed with English Bulldogs, so I adore their dog Meaty. I jumped around the room clapping like a freak when they taught Meaty to skateboard. I even got my dad hooked on that show! Big cracks my shit up.

  • I think you totally just hit the nail on the head. You have verbalized the very reasons why I too, LOVE Rob & Big. Since I started watching it’s been a mystery…why in the hell am I IN LOVE with this show..and Mini-horse..and meaty…and Rob’s infectious laughter? It’s because it is a window into life at our house…and we can totally relate.

    Anyhow, congratulations on sending your manusscipt in. I will be one of the first to buy your book when it’s published. Until then…enjoy your free time and sock drawer organization!

  • Delurking to say, congratulations on finishing the manuscript! That’s so exciting.

    And also, hey, who hasn’t wanted a pony who will live in the living room? I ask my roommate for one all the time. She always says no…

  • after reading the first sentence of the rob and big scenario… i knew what fire ant pile it was leading to. with bright orange arrows. and neon lights. flashing.

    i also have the book on pre-order on — i’m impatient! i’m sorry!

  • Katie

    Congratulations! And I totally hear you on random things in the world perfectly summarizing some aspect of your life. I LOVE when that happens.

  • May

    Congrats on the manuscript. I’m so thrilled for you and the collective universe is heaving a huge sigh of relief with you. We are also very eagerly waiting the book.

    Also? If your editor gets too crazy or carried away doing that thing called “editing,” let me know. I live right here in the middle of NYC, and I could hunt him down. It would be easy.

    Gosh, now I feel like streaking. I’ll leave that to you and your chill, head-bobbing bodyguard. Hilarious.

  • Stephanie from Omaha


    That is the one of the BEST clip of Rob & Big EVER!!!

    I was walking through a big department store at the mall and in the midst of Women’s Lingerie, I heard this Enrique song. I grabbed my friend by the arm and pulled her through racks of panties and bras…looking for the perfect spot to hear the song clearly. She thought we were on a mission to dodge a former boyfriend or something. All I could manage to say is, ‘Do you? Do you? DO YOU KNOW WHAT IT FEELS LIKE LOVING SOMEONE THAT’S IN A RUSH TO THROW YOU AWAY’?!?!

    I’m 95% against Reality Tv, but I love this show. My DVR is on Rob & Big overload…I’m sure one night, my DVR is just going to say ‘Grow up and start watching CNN’.

  • Michelle

    I love that show. It’s good to know that I am not the only Mommy who loves that show. Hah!!! Congrats on your manuscript.

  • Fiona

    Congrats on finishing the book! Can’t wait to get my copy – I already pre-ordered it from Amazon.

    At least I know I’m not the only one watching Rob & Big. I loved the miniature horse episode.

  • I so knew where you were going with the Rob and Big story, I have to say that my marriage is exactly the same way. Thanks for the giggle!

    Congrats on the manuscript. I can hardly manage to write my blog somedays much less a book. Can’t wait to read it.

  • SO Huggable!
    Congratulations on getting the Llama off your face!

  • Congrats!!! And totally let me know if you want to drive through the hollywood hills stalking Rob & Big, because I’d definitely be into that.

  • Our writing season has just begun… and I’ve already created an outlook folder flagged with my editor’s email address. I will spend the next four months doing my best to ignore the mail in there. Sigh. Congrats!

  • Chloe

    Congratulations, dear girl, on shipping off your manuscript. I follow so many blogs, no small number of which are also shilling books, but I will buy yours.

    You amuse, you incite, you engender tears, and you are brave.

    Best of luck to you with this latest endeavour.

  • I adore Rob&Big. How could you not?
    But I wish they hadn’t crashed all those helicopters. I wanted one.

    CONGRATS on the book!

  • Congrats on this amazing step!!! I look forward to finding your book at my local Barnes and Noble!!!


  • Kristin A.


    P.S. I started watching Rob & Big because of you talking about it on here and it is one of my FAV shows, one of the very few shows my husband and i watch together. It cracks us the hell up. we love those guys. and meaty. and mini horse.

  • Weeeeeee open comments! There are so many things I’ve wanted to write like FOREVER… and now I can’t remember *hyperventilates* I’ll just have to settle for CONGRATULATIONS, both on the book and a very sweet post. 😀

  • Heather

    Just turned 40. I. Love. That. Show. And I want a web thrower of my very own…

    Congrats on finishing your manuscript. I’m sure it will all have been worth it.

  • Kendra

    I LOVE this!

  • Congrats, Heather! I can’t wait to read the book.

    Also, thanks for the reminder to add Rob and Big to my new TIVO! Great show!

  • Excellent! I can’t wait to pick up a copy!

    And, dude, if bacon actually falls out of the fucking sky, I’m change my rules about proximity to Mormons and move my ass to Utah.

  • Devon

    “I don’t know what’s going on, but maybe this is what happens right before bacon falls out of the sky.” LMFAO Ohhhhh, Dooce, Happy St. Patty’s Day! And congrats, mofo! =)

  • Amy


    Just wanted to send a little comment about your dog’s obsession with the chimney – is there any chance you might have a bat up there?

    Our dog (OCD border collie) did the same thing for two days and on the third day a bat was circling our living room. Frightening, disgusting, and still not even a little comical – even when my husband reenacts it for guests.

  • Amy

    congrats on the finished manuscript–and on all your Bloggie awards!

  • Congratulations! That’s awesome news.

  • J.

    Best of luck! And although I haven’t watched MTV since they stopped playing videos sometime in the ’90’s, I might just have to watch that show.

  • Laura


  • Congrats on finishing your book! I’ve been a devoted reader for about two years and look forward to reading the book as well!

  • I don’t even know how to tell you that you rock anymore.
    You rock, your family rocks, your dogs rock, congratulations on ERVERYTHING, you deserve it.
    It’s funny how I first arrived at this website through a link in Violent Acres (not that I liked her, I just got there somehow). She sucks, you rule.
    Gah. Please come over to my house? In Argentina? Kthx.

  • Congratulations on the book!

    We watch Rob and Big faithfully and I totally understand those moments of laughing until you can’t breathe. I love how bitchy Little Bitty Mini Horse can be!

  • Congratulations! I’m totally over here doing “big airplane arms” on your behalf.

  • Rachel

    Falling bacon? WHAT?!?! Can you please come dance on my front lawn? Congrats on the book. I will be ordering myself a copy shortly.

  • Cannot WAIT to read that book!

  • Jeff


    But you totally lost all cool points by making me listen to ANYTHING by Enrique Iglesias.

  • My first response is I WISH I WAS DONE WITH MY BOOK TOO, but no. I have two weeks left before my looming deadline.

    But really, I just want to say I love Rob And Big, and when my phone rings, my tone is their theme song. “Let me tell you about my best friend . . . “

  • Andie Grace

    Yeah, what they all said: congratulations, you’re my hero, et cetera. Wow!

  • Jeanette M.

    DO WORK Heather!!!!!!

  • I am 48 years old. A couple of weekends ago Rob, (of “Rob & Big” fame) opened a new skate clothing store on Melrose in L.A. My 25 year old nephew and I stood in line for 3 hours so that we could meet Rob and they cut the line off right in front of us. Our lovely parting gift for having stood im line for so long was: A pair of summer socks.

    If I had a net gun I would have shot it at the guard at the front door!

    Long live the mini horse!

  • Busy adding that to my DVR list . . .


  • Kerstin

    You’re doing amazing things, you know that!?!
    Who DOESN’T want to write a book – but how many people actually got what it takes to do it?! Not that many.
    I certainly don’t. Even though (from what I know about you by now)you have had a lot of difficulties in your life, you pull through it and come out gracefully and do YOUR STUFF. Congrats!

Heather B. Armstrong

Hi. I’m Heather B. Armstrong, and this used to be called mommy blogging. But then they started calling it Influencer Marketing: hashtag ad, hashtag sponsored, hashtag you know you want me to slap your product on my kid and exploit her for millions and millions of dollars. That’s how this shit works. Now? Well… sit back, buckle up, and enjoy the ride.

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