Did You Know That Jimmy Fallon is My Cousin?


I had the most bizarre dream last night. It was about Jimmy Fallon. It wasn't erotic, although he is a cutie-patootie. It was all business related.

Jimmy Fallon called me and said, "What's up, cuz?" and I was like, "Umm, excuse me? Am I being punked right now?"

Jimmy laughed that cackle-y laugh of his and said, "No! We're actually cousins. Well, we're third cousins twice removed or something like that. I can't remember exactly. See, Ancestory.com wants to sponsor my show and my team and I thought it would be hilarious to use their site and research who I'm related to. We're finding distant cousins of mine and bringing them on the show to interview. We'd love to have you come on. You can totally promote Spending the Holidays with People I Want to Punch in the Throat if you want." (Now you see why this dream isn't erotic. We're related!! And my new-found cousin wants to be my pimp. Awesome.)

The next thing I knew I was telling the Hubs I was going to New York City to be on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon. "When do you go?" he asked.

"Tomorrow. Get this, I have to spend the weekend with Jimmy and his wife. I have to live at their apartment."


"Why?" the Hubs asked.

"I don't know. Something about the other cousins were really nervous and weird on the show and so the producers decided it was because they didn't know Jimmy well enough. So from now on any other cousins will stay with Jimmy. They'll have cameras there and if we do anything funny or dumb I'm sure they'll show it on air."

"So you'll be gone all weekend?" the Hubs asked.

"Yes, why?"

"What about the kids?"

"I'll miss them, but I'll see them next week."

"No. I have to work all weekend, Jen, and your parents are in Hawaii. Who will babysit our kids?"

Our children are now 10 and 8 and have never been left alone with a stranger. We don't have a babysitter of any kind. We have my parents and that's it. There was no way I could find a babysitter that I would trust to stay with my kids all weekend.

So, I called Jimmy Fallon and said, "Listen, I'd love to be on your show, but I have to bring my kids."

"Kids?!" Jimmy squealed. "I LOVE kids!"

"No," I corrected him. "You love babies. I have full-size kids that eat a lot, are smelly, and have the occasional smart mouth."

"I love it! Bring them!"

"Really? You want me to bring them?"

"Of course! We're family now, cuz!"

The kids and I showed up at the door of Jimmy and Nancy's apartment. We rang the bell and were immediately welcomed by a gorgeous woman in yoga pants wearing two small babies. "Welcome, Jen. I'm Nancy Juvonen. I'm Jimmy's wife. I'm your cousin by marriage."

I looked around for cameras, but I couldn't see any. Wow. My cousin Jimmy's wife was amazing.

The apartment was full of baby toys and paraphernalia, piles of laundry (dirty and clean), industrial-size boxes of diapers, and the TV was blaring "Peppa Pig." I immediately relaxed. This was home.

We got settled into the guest room and it was time to lecture my kids. "You will be nice to those babies," I threatened Adolpha. She's not a fan of babies or young children, in general. She's already informed me that she will NEVER be a mother and will only raise dogs somewhere far from other people, because she can't stand people. She has been known on occasion to tell the owners of babies that they are gross. "You will not throw anything in this house," I scolded Gomer. Everything becomes a projectile in his hands. "This is a big deal, guys. I raised you to have manners once. Try and use them. Please."

They promised they would be polite and well-behaved if I gave them each twenty bucks at the end of the weekend. "Done," I said.

Jimmy knocked on the guest room door. "Jen? Are you ready?" he asked.

I opened the door. "Ready?"

"Yeah, we need to spend some time together so that you're comfortable with me when we tape. I have to take a drive and I thought you could come with."

"Uhhh," I looked at my kids.

"Oh, they can stay with me!" Nancy said. "I read I Just Want to Pee Alone. I get it, sister. I know you'd do the same for me."

"Wait. You read I Just Want to Pee Alone?"

"Of course! It's like my Bible these days."

Whaaat??? "Have you read any of these?" I pulled out I Just Want to Be Alone, I STILL Just Want to Pee Alone, People I Want to Punch in the Throat: Competitive Crafters, Drop Off Despots, and Other Suburban Scourges, and Spending the Holidays with People I Want to Punch in the Throat.

"Oh wow. That's a lot of books," she said, giggling.

"Yes, and they're all available for movie or television options," I told her. Hey, I'm no dummy. Nancy Juvonen is a big-time Hollywood producer when she's not changing diapers. Actually, I'm going to say she's closing deals while she's changing diapers. That's just how multi-tasking mommas do it.

"Nice one, cuz," Jimmy said, fist-bumping me.

The next thing I knew we were in a car together driving through Manhattan. "Oh, that looks like a good one," Jimmy said, pulling the car to the curb.

Before I could ask what he meant, an older white woman jumped in the back seat. "83rd and Lex," she barked.

"Yes, ma'am," Jimmy said, maneuvering the car back into traffic. He made small talk with the woman and then started hitting her with a bunch of one-liners. He handed me a sheet of paper with the one-liners written on it. "If she laughs, give it a check. If she doesn't, give it an x," he told me.

This went on for quite a while. We picked up several different average New Yorkers and drove them to their destinations. Finally the car was empty and I asked Jimmy, "What are you doing?"

"This is how I spend most Saturdays. I like to drive people around and practice my jokes on them. Everyone will laugh if I say I'm Jimmy Fallon, but if they think I'm just some Uber driver they'll be honest. Plus, I made close to two hundred bucks today. Score!"

We got back to the apartment and my children were playing nicely with Jimmy's babies. Nancy was relaxing on the couch reading Spending the Holidays. YES! She looked up when we came in. "Hey! How did it go?" she asked.

"Great!" said Jimmy. "Over three-quarters of the jokes are solid. So that's good."

"That is good!"

"How were my kids?" I asked, nervously.

"They were fantastic! They've played all day with the girls. I'm halfway through your book and I think I want to talk to you about it when you have some time after the kids are in bed tonight."

YES!

Then it was time to tape "The Tonight Show." I was in the guest room getting ready. I was wearing a sparkly top that I do not own in real life and five-inch hooker heels - also something I really don't own, but a girl can dream I guess??? Anywhoo, I'm half-dressed and I'm looking for pants in my suitcase. I can't find anything that isn't cargo shorts. I'm about to cry when there's a knock at the door.

It's Nancy. "Everything OK, Jen?"

I opened the door and greeted her in my bizarre ensemble. "I can't find my pants," I sobbed. "I have no pants!"

She looked at me for a minute and said, "You know what? Lots of starlets are doing this look. They wear a longish top with sky high heels and no pants. It can work, Jen. I think Jimmy will keep you talking and entertaining the crowd and no one will notice you're not wearing pants."

"Are you kidding? My legs are giant and bright white. And my underpants are granny panties," I wailed.

Just then a baby cried and Nancy had to go and see what she needed. That's when Adolpha slipped into the room. "You can't go without pants," Adolpha said. "You look ridiculous." Adolpha has been giving me fashion advice since she was three. The girl has been giving me solid, scathing criticism on my wardrobe for years. Why would she stop in my dream?

"What am I going to do?" I asked.

"Lucky for you, I know what a hot mess you are," Adolpha said, rummaging in her suitcase. "I packed you a dress, Spanx, and sensible heels. You'll break your leg in those things."

She pulled out the perfect outfit and I got dressed. "I owe you another twenty," I said.

Then I was sitting on the couch on "The Tonight Show" and Jimmy was cracking jokes about us being cousins and what we did all weekend. He rolled some tape of me walking around New York City looking wide-eyed and hillbilly-ish even though I once lived there for several years. But I didn't even care. And then he said, "Jen, I had such a great time getting to know you this weekend. You reminded me so much of a good friend of mine. I was thinking I should introduce you two sometime. But maybe you don't know her. Do you know who Tina Fey is?" He looked at me. I stared him. No one said or did anything for about thirty seconds and then I slapped him across his stupid face.

"ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME!" I roared. "Of course I know who Tina Fey is!"

Jimmy giggled and said, "Oh, good. Because she's here and she'd like to meet you, cuz."

And then Tina Fey walked out in a sparkly tunic top and sky high heels. And she looked goooood. I was so glad I'd changed. How embarrassing to be THAT much of a fangirl that I'd dress like her?!

I would like to say that Tina and I discovered we were also long-lost cousins and we bonded over hoagie sandwiches and braided each other's hair, but I can't. I have no idea what happened after Tina walked out, because my teeny tiny old lady bladder decided right then that it had had enough of this dream and it wanted some attention. The choice I was given was: wet the bed and find out what Tina says or get up right this second and run to the bathroom and never know. Damn you, teeny tiny old lady bladder!

I plan to take a nap this afternoon and see if I can pick up where we left off.

If you liked this story, then you're going to LOOOOOVE Spending the Holidays with People I Want to Punch in the Throat. It's available everywhere TODAY!!!  

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