Nov 142017

Oh hey guys, what’s up. I’m just over here slowly perishing from whatever gnarly chest cold bullshit I have. I thought I was getting better over weekend BUT NO now it’s manifested itself inside me as the cough of a 70-year-old chainsmoking secretary from the 1950s.

Yesterday was the most miserable day yet. I woke up from a night of next to no rest and tried using mind-control to convince my body that I was OK, ready for the day, we got this. But everything was working against me, from the moment I walked out of the door. As soon as the front door clicked shut, I realized I left my wallet on the couch, my wallet that has all of my credit cards, my Connect Card for the trolley, my work ID—that one I could have managed without, but without my ConnectCard or the ability to get cash, I had no way to get to work.

You’re probably like, “OK so just use your housekey and get your wallet, how is this even newsworthy, yawn” but what you should know is that I NEVER HAVE A HOUSEKEY and I will tell you why: I let my dummy son borrow mine after he lost his copy and then HE LOST MY KEY WHICH WAS THE MASTER KEY TO THE HOUSE AND THE ONLY ONE THAT WORKED RIGHT!!! Henry finally one day was like, “Enough is enough” and made me a copy using his key, which is the worst-cut key ever and I have never been able to use it in all the years he’s had it. So you know the copy he made me was even worse!

I have hurled that key across the room countless times, the last time was last year when I couldn’t open the door with it and had to get Chooch’s nemesis Larry to help me and even Larry was like THIS IS NOT A KEY, THIS IS THE DEVIL’S PUZZLE! As “luck” would have it, that fucking key had somehow made its way back into my jacket pocket, the same jacket I was wearing that miserable Monday morning, so I sighed, clenched it tight in my hand, and mumbled some quick JUST STAY CALM mantra before plunging that motherfucker into the lock.

OF COURSE IT DIDN’T WORK so I called Henry and was like, “You listen to me, motherfucker. I am about to have a heart attack on this porch. Everything is going wrong AND THIS KEY IS A WORTHLESS PIECE OF SHIT!!” He was saying something about staying calm, he’d to come get me, don’t let the neighbors see my true colors, blah blah blah but I had already hung up because I was determined to conquer this bitch-ass housekey. Between my Hulkian twisting, simultaneous kicks to the door, and guttural screams to the Hell below, I eventually managed to wrench the door open, grab my FUCKING PUSHEEN WALLET, and punish the sidewalk with my maniacal stomps. When I arrived at the trolley stop 10 minutes later, the trolley was just pulling up and it was more crowded that I have even seen it. The able-bodied MAN in front of me grabbed the only open seat and I know this is the age of GENDER EQUALITY but I so badly wanted to play the chauvinism card in that moment because I sick, for god’s sake, couldn’t he SEE THAT?

So I had to stand, which on a normal day I would not have minded, but literally as soon as that trolley door slid shut, it was like a vault being sealed and I became acutely aware of the tickle in my throat.

Oh god, I needed to cough, and I needed to cough BAD.

First, I tried mind over matter. I tried to picture myself healthy and I don’t know, walking in a garden or something, BUT OH GOD THOSE FLOWERS! THAT POLLEN! COUGH COUGH COUGH!!!

So then I thought, well, let’s picture myself already off the trolley, coughing freely.

Yeah, that didn’t work.

I let myself cough into my arm once, hoping that would quell it. But it just made it worse, because now there were 87 more coughs queued up, getting all unruly in my throat, trying to line-jump.

I needed a new cough drop, but since I was holding on to the bar with one hand, I had only one hand left to rummage through my huge bag and I wouldn’t find it, I couldn’t find the cough drops, why god why. OH GOD I NEEDED TO COUGH AGAIN. NOW MY NOSE WAS STARTING TO RUN. EVERYONE IS STARING AT ME AREN’T THEY?!

I kept swallowing back the urge to cough until my body was racked with shudders and twitches, I was lurching and my face was getting red, but DON’T YOU DO IT ERIN, DON’T YOU COUGH, NO ONE WANTS TO BE ON THE TROLLEY WITH A COUGHER.

Tears were rolling down my cheeks now. I wanted to murder the guy who took that last seat. He is forever on my list.

I finally screamed UNCLE and got off the trolley three stops early, at Station Square, and walked the remaining mile to work, where I was able to cough freely into the wind.

When I arrived, I looked at Glenn and in what sounded like a failed Kathleen Turner impression, I growled, “DON’T TALK TO ME TODAY.”

I left work at 2 because I was annoying everyone with my hacking and Glenn was like, “Amber, can Erin go home now, or….?” I would have left earlier than that, but I had to wait for Henry to be done with work because I refused to try my hand at that FUCKING HOUSEKEY AGAIN.

“You’re so pathetic,” Glenn sighed, after I alerted everyone that I would be there for another hour. YOU KNOW WHAT GLENN?! You’re right. I’m pathetic. Ugh, I hate being sick.

Came home and coughed my dumb fucking head off all goddamn night. I bet the neighbors love me.

Luckily, I already had today scheduled off work because I had to attend a parent-teacher conference at the gifted center, and then I had a dentist appointment (that’s a whole other odyssey that I don’t even want to talk about right now). I managed to get through the conference without coughing until the very end, but I had to cancel my dentist appointment because I am a hot fucking mess. My eyes are all bloodshot from coughing and I look like I’m strung out, not to mention the whole “can’t go 5 minutes without coughing” thing.

So today has been pretty terrible as far as days off go. I have just been laying on the couch watching Riverdale which is pretty great until it starts getting into parent stuff, and then it just gets confusing. I want less shady dealings and extortion, more Jughead. You feel me.

Also, is Archie like the most boring character or what? All of his friends are involved in all of these complicated plots and then Archie walks onto the scene and it’s like, “Guys, shhh! Archie is here to talk about the lame song he just wrote and that’s more important than the rest of us solving crimes and being multi-dimensional characters!”

Also #2, Luke Perry and Skeet Ulrich are in this? 1990s Delia’s-wearing Erin is fucking sprung.

I called Henry crying because it’s lunch time and I don’t know what to do about that so he suggested that I go to Parker’s and I was like NOT WITH THIS COUGH BITCH PLZ and then he said, “Maybe your Mexican taco cart boyfriend can make you a veggie taco” and I shrieked, “NO I CAN’T LET HIM SEE ME LIKE THIS!” to which Henry laughed and said, “OK bye.” Unless that’s code for “be right there to cook for you” he can just GTFO.

I don’t do “sick” very well.

This has been a “Sick on the couch” free-form blog post. Guess I’ll go eat a piece of bread.

  4 Responses to “Greetings from Plague, PA. Be Glad You’re Not Here.”

  1. I’m so sorry you’re sick, hope you make a miraculous overnight recovery!

    Is it the doorknob or deadbolt that the key doesn’t open? Or both?

    Delia’s! I forgot all about that catalogue! I never managed to get anything from it but boy did I want.

  2. My poor friend Erin! I really hope you feel better soon. Here’s a story to cheer you up: your mom wasn’t the only one to stuff you in boxes for Halloween. Halloween night, I saw a little girl about five dressed as a domino. She could barely walk, just shuffle her little feet, and she looked up at her mom who was with her and said, “I hope you’re enjoying this!” The mom just about fell over with laughter and I did too!

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