NEW MOM explores the brilliant, terrible, wonderful, confusing realities of first-time motherhood. It’s for anybody who wants to be a new mom, is a new mom, was a new mom, or wants really good reasons to never be a new mom.
Last Sunday, Ali Wong gave new moms a special Mother’s Day treat: an unapologetic portrayal of motherhood in her new Netflix special, Hard Knock Wife. She performed while seven months pregnant with her second child, cracking jokes about everything that happens to a woman and her body during and after pregnancy, from breastfeeding (which she compares to parallel parking), to sex after childbirth, to inadequate parental-leave laws. It was a hilarious follow-up to her breakout performance two years ago in Baby Cobra, which made her the first comedian to perform a comedy special in her third trimester. Read her most memorable quotes from Hard Knock Wife below.
1. “A lot of people like to ask me ‘Ali, how on earth do you balance family and career?’ Men never get asked that question. Because they don’t. My husband occasionally changes diapers, and when people hear that, confetti everywhere. When my baby girl was first born I would do skin-on-skin contact everyday to bond with her. She shit on my chest. Where’s my confetti?”
2. “I’ll tell you how I balance family and career. Real talk? I have a nanny. That’s it. That’s the answer. Yes, it’s very unlikable and unpopular to broadcast that because not everybody can afford a nanny, it’s super expensive. Both me and my husband have to hustle. We have to work very hard to not take care of our child ourselves. … My nanny is 62 years old. I would never hire anything younger than 62 years old. If you are hiring a 25-year-old pretty young thing to be your nanny, you’re a dumbass.”
3. “Nobody told me about all the crazy shit that comes out of your pussy after you give birth. You know what happens after the baby comes out? You know what else exits? Her house. Her living room, her pillows, the Bob Marley poster, all the food that went bad in her refrigerator for months.”
4. “I used to do a lot more jokes on sucking dick and my pussy. But now not as many because I don’t suck dick anymore. When you give birth to a baby they hand you a diploma that says, ‘Congratulations, you’ve earned the right to not suck dick out of obligation anymore.’ If my husband were to demand that I suck his dick I would laugh in his face. And then I would go to sleep and guess what, in the morning, he’s still there. Ain’t no consequence, we’re handcuffed together by a baby and a mortgage. Checkmate bitch, it’s over. You ain’t got nowhere to run. I don’t gotta suck your dick anymore, you owe me money.”
5. On breastfeeding: “Apparently you have to get the baby to latch on at a very specific angle. You gotta tilt their head and do geometry to get them on properly. And it’s very stressful because when they’re hungry and they’re crying it makes your hormones spray milk all over their face and their neck, which then becomes very slippery and hard to grip, and then you gotta slam them on at just the right time, and every time I would do it it was like parallel parking: I don’t know how I did it.”
6. “I joined a new mom group in Los Angeles. I don’t find any of these bitches particularly interesting or fun, but when you’re a new mom on maternity leave it’s like The Walking Dead, you’ve just gotta hook up with a crew to survive.”
7. “I used to hate on other moms for the clothes that they wore, you know, all the cheesy-ass animal print and loud metallic shiny shoes, and now I see something that’s bedazzled in rhinestones and I’m like ‘oh that looks nice, I think I’m gonna get that,’ because when you’re a mom you need sparkle to compensate for the light inside of you that has died.”
8. “[Here’s] how I know I love my baby more than anyone. I told my husband ‘till death do us part’ but I’ve never sniffed his asshole. I’ve licked it, but I haven’t sniffed it. And if you haven’t licked ass yet, grow up, grow the fuck up and learn how to be in a committed relationship where you have to make sacrifices for the greater good.”
9. On maternity leave: “You get no 401K, no co-workers, you’re just in solitary confinement all day long with this human Tamagotchi that doesn’t have a reset button, so the stakes are extremely high. … In every other first-world country, Canada, France, Germany, women get up to three years off paid maternity leave. In the U.S. we get jack shit. There is zero federal policy for maternity leave. Maternity leave is not just to bond with the baby, fuck the baby. Maternity leave is for new moms to hide and heal their demolished-ass bodies. I couldn’t go back to work topless beating my wet titty trying to establish dominance over my co-workers.”
10. “It’s so sexist when people ask me, well, if you’re here, then who’s taking care of the baby? Who the fuck do you think is taking care of the baby? The TV is taking care of the baby, okay? The windows are open, she’s got gummy bear vitamins on her lap, she’s fine.”