Another Sucker…Learning the Hard Way Again by Deb Danielle

Well, I thought I’d covered “learning the hard way” last week and that this week I’d write something short and maybe even off-topic. But it turns out I’ve learned many things the hard way and should perhaps write a book on the subject.

For now, here are are some of the less serious, but hard learned lessons from my life.

From childhood:

If you cut an arch-shaped wedge out of your bowl-cut bangs and then tell everyone “the faeries” did it, no one will believe you.

If you tell the neighborhood bully about the invisible friends you have in your backyard, he will come into your backyard and then your invisible friends will become more invisible.

If you shave your legs with your father’s razor, it’s not going to turn out well. If you shave them without water or soap, it’s really not going to turn out well. If you shave you legs when you’re six, with anyone’s razor and then convince your best friend to do it too, you’re going to be in trouble.

From adolescence/teenage years:

If you write an essay the night before, you are not going to get an A.

If you smoke on the roof, someone is going to catch you and they will not believe you were there to look at the stars. Especially if it’s raining.

If you tell an adult you are going for a jog and come back smelling like smoke, alcohol or both, they are not going to believe you jogged much.

If you walk in the snow in a cast, it will start to disintegrate and then it will start to smell.

If you attempt to run in the slush in that same cast because you are late for class, the cast will start to disintegrate, then crack, then smell, and you will also be in pain. And you’ll still be late and get a detention because (hello!?) it’s very hard to get any speed while running in the slush in a cast. And your fellow detentionees will hate you because you smell.

If don’t wear your retainers you will have to get braces for a second time. If you’re a total imbecile, you might have to get them a third time. (Don’t you love the word “imbecile”?!)

If you hate bugs, sleeping on the (wet!) ground in a tent next to snoring strangers with wierd facial hair and carrying a huge backpack a zillion miles, Outward Bound is not for you. If your mother forces you to go anyway and they make you leave your biodegradable shampoo, your extra underwear and your Tom Robbins book in a field where a plane just dropped you off on the very first day, you’re in for a bad time. If your group includes an ex-con and someone who just escaped from a cult, you’re in for a seriously dysfunctional but interesting bad time.

From university/twenties:

If you write an essay the night before, you’re not going to get an A. (Yep, this one took more than once.)

If you drink more coffee it will not give you more brain cells or make up for lack of studying.

If a guy doesn’t like you to start with, he won’t like you any better when you’re drunk and trying to show him what a great dancer you are. (This also took more than once…)

If a guy doesn’t like you to start with, memorizing his class schedule, calling him every day and showing up everywhere he goes will not make him like you. A new outfit will not make him like you. Making out with his best friend or his arch enemy will not make him like you and befriending his ex-girlfriend will really not make him like you. Nothing will make him like you.

If he does like you and then you do any or all of the above things, he is likely to change his mind and again, not like you.


If you shave your legs and armpits, it will not significantly reduce your weight. Neither will cutting your hair or taking off rings, watches or ponytail holders.

If you try to save money by not going to the dentist for three years, you are going to have a painful, expensive time when you finally do go. (And starting to floss three days before will not make it look like you were flossing all along.)

If you have a child, you will rarely, if ever, sleep in again. You will fantasize about sleep more than you do about chocolate or sex.

If you rub your eyes, they only get itchier.

If you swear in front of your toddler, he or she will learn the swear word and shout it with pride at the park and in the grocery store. No one is going to believe she’s saying “sit” or “another sucker.”

16 Replies to “Another Sucker…Learning the Hard Way Again by Deb Danielle”

  1. Danielle, are you srue you didn;t get hold of my diaries for some of thsi stuff? Truly priceless.

    I’d come up with some lessons of my own, but it’s 6 frickin’ a.m. and I have to take my older son (who I too unintentionally taught to swear) back to college to begin his senior year. How the hell did I get old enough to do that?

  2. “If you have a child, you will rarely, if ever, sleep in again. You will fantasize about sleep more than you do about chocolate or sex. ”

    I can vouch for this one! Except for maybe the chocolate part…sometimes I think, a candy bar will perk me up and that’s all I’ll need. (which by the way doesn’t work and it’s still something I’m learning 🙂

  3. Danielle: Lot’s of fun reading your musings! I am certainly learning some things I should have known and some I suspected.
    Cindy Ullman

  4. This post makes me think you need to write your memoirs. Although everyone has some version of things they learned the hard way, yours seems extra-compelling and makes me want to know so much more about you.

  5. I had to get braces a second time, too! But not a third time…by then I was in college. A lost cause.

    This was very, very funny. I’ve also been there with the pre-dentist flossing frenzy. And the doing everything short of hiring a hypnotist to get some guy to like me. Ugh.

  6. Good afternoon all! I’ve started this reply at 8 am and I’m sorry to be so late coming back with responses! (Toddler music class! Plus no child care today! Everything will be punctuated with an exclamation!)

    Judy–thanks for being here first this morning–usually I’m up at 7 and there are no comments yet, so it was a lovely surprise.
    Some of us seem to be more prone than others to these kinds of lessons. Feel free to come back with some stories once you’ve had some coffee, or whatever your thing is for waking up. We’d love to hear more.

    Keri–yes, the candy bar does come in as a close second, possibly a first on some days. Now if one could figure out a way to have the sleep, the sex and the chocolate simultaneously… but even then, Old Macdonald or ABC would probably be playing in the background.

    Gail–thanks! Stand-up would make me seriously neurotic though. More seriously neurotic, I mean.

    Cindy (aka Mom)–well, I figure I’m safe from being grounded at this point. Thanks for coming by!

    Joanne–a memoir would be fun! Until joiniing this wonderful grog, I’d never done a lot of writing about myself (except in numerous angst ridden journals) and it’s turnig out to be fun.

    Eileen, I’m sure you ARE a better dancer when you’ve been drinking. We should do some kind of study about this.

  7. Jess–Aha! Maybe it was the hypnotist I missed! Think of all the extra boyfriends I could have had…

    Jenny–Yep, I’ve had some therapy! You think I might need more? Just maybe some upkeep?

    I promise to tell you all the full Outward Bound story but it deserves a whole post. My mom will love it. (and who else am I writing for after all these years?!)

  8. Hey Danny! I don’t suggest that you post too many more items about dancing drunk (and maybe nude?) for unrequited love, given that your mom is obviously reading these blogs! Would love to hear the story of your escape from Outward Bound …

  9. Nude?! Moi? And dancing at the same time? Those boys I was referring to didn’t like me, so I think I stopped short of getting nude in my efforts. Pretty sure, anyway. G-d, I hope so.

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