Three Ways to Stop Being Janet

Three Ways to Stop Being Janet September 18, 2019

Following up on yesterday, I thought I would provide for myself, but really for you, three ways to stop being Janet from The Good Place. The first step, on the road to recovery, is to realize you have a problem. The second step is to do something about it.

One: Stop Dressing Like a Flight Attendant

I mean, I know, your flight attendant look is the thing that everybody loves most about you. Not only are the clothes comfortable and appropriate, but they also add that little extra je n’sais quoi to your overall air. And gosh, I know it will be hard to find something else to wear. What will you do with all those blouses with the scarf bit that ties right up under the chin? Your closet is full of them. But if you don’t stop dressing like a flight attendant, you can’t stop being Janet. So empty out all your drawers, head over to Target or Walmart, depending on, well, you know, and fill up your cart with leggings, and some sort of tiny tops, certainly nothing that would go all the way down over the legging. Janet would never wear leggings as trousers. The best way to heal is to fully embrace the reality that if you want people to stop asking you questions, you have to wear clothes that make everyone feel more than a little bit totally uncomfortable. Make sure the leggings have bits missing.

Two: Be a Little Bit Threatening

Janet is so cheerful. That’s part of her problem. And available. All they have to do in the good place is snap and there she is. I tend also to be very non-threatening, mostly because of my absurdly diminutive stature. I have found, however, that if I carelessly brandish my larger sized cleaver when I’m chopping mounds of onions and crying in the kitchen, whoever comes to have her life put in order pauses, and even backs silently away. I’m sure you can imagine the scene. A child wanders desultorily in and begins to ask something that if he thought about it for three whole seconds he would be able to find the answer himself like, “where are my shoes?” when they are manifestly lying right there on the floor behind him, and you, knife sharpened, face puffy and red, eyes streaming, look up and say, “What dear?” He will involuntarily step backward, look down onto–get this–the floor and see the shoes lying there. Another trick is to, when you’re pulling up into your driveway after an eight hour day at church, lose it and start flinging those same wretched shoes, coats, bits of paper and pencils, and other random stuff that never gets put away, out onto the ground next to the car and through gritted teeth explain that while you appreciate that Jesus died on the cross for all our sins, the great sin of NEVER DOING WHAT YOUR MOTHER TELLS YOU might need more consideration on your part and oh my word, why can’t you just put literally anything away just one time, just once.

Three: Have All Your Information Be Catastrophically Wrong For One Day Because That’ll Show ‘Em

I actually tried this recently though not on purpose. On the very first day of school, I told one child that her class was canceled (because I thought it was) and another child that his class was not canceled (because I thought it wasn’t) when in reality the first child was supposed to be in class and the second wasn’t. Then I left the house and went shopping for my sanity, carefully muting my phone so as not to be interrupted. When I came home everyone was in hysterics. By the end of the week, nobody was asking me anything anymore. Now I wander happily and vaguely through my life, smiling benignly, though with just a hint of menace, nodding and murmuring yes when anyone tries to explain what’s actually supposed to be happening. Total blithering incompetence, that’s what I’m suggesting. Then everyone will figure it out for themselves and start saving their money to have you admitted to some kind of gentle home for the mentally lacking.

So there you are! Three ways to stop being Janet. Good Luck!

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