It’s hard to believe it’s officially summer already, especially after the creepily chilly June we’ve been having here in Pittsburgh. But the sun was out in full-blaze all day yesterday and the sky was blue. It improved my mood exponentially!
Here are some pictures from yesterday, because it was a really pleasant day that I would like to remember for always.
(It occurs to me just now that I have been journaling/blogging my life since 5th grade like some kind of megalomaniac. Someday when I’m dead, someone will unearth of all my diaries, vacation journals, and blog and think, “Who the hell cares?”)
Pretty much every Saturday starts with cereal / Korean YouTubers / walk to the post office to mail cards. Lately, my Saturday post office experience has been less than stellar because there’s some new, young girl who has no personality and also doesn’t know what to do with scan sheets (we usually are mailing a clump of cards so we have a bar code that we print on a scan sheet which makes life easier for the postal clerks unless they don’t know how to do their jobs, then it just make it harder). My favorite Saturday clerk is this guy named Michael who will swear when the scale isn’t registering a weight and he’ll say things like, “If you take the survey at the bottom of the receipt, my boss will wash your windows.”
But this new broad is just resting bitch face all the way.
Then we walked to the coffee shop down the street because I wanted a chocolate chip cookie, OK?!
On the way back, right after I said hola to my Mexican taco cart boyfriend, we were waiting to cross the street when the first car in the line of traffic waved for us to cross. So I did. All I knew was that this guy was being nice and letting me cross and I can’t tell you how infrequently that happens when I’m walking to the Trolley on weekdays, trying to cross the street, and no one stops for me and I have to stand on the sidewalk and scream, “CROSSWALK! RIGHT OF WAY!” to all these fuckers.
Anyway, I pranced (literally, that’s how I cross the street when someone lets me go because I’m all nervous and trying to get to the other side as quickly as I can) across the street and right when I was in the middle, some other car started blowing their horns because apparently, they had a green light.
So the guy who let me go started screaming out of his window, and I thought he was yelling at me so I was confused and scared, but no, he was yelling at the person beeping.
“PEOPLE ARE CROSSING THE STREET, YOU ASSHOLE!!!!”
Like, he fucking bellowed it in his thick Yinzer accent AND EVERYONE AROUND THE BLOCK STOPPED AND LOOKED.
The firefighters loafing outside of the firehouse.
The elders sitting on benches.
The old man who owns Pitaland and sits at a table with his coffee.
MY MEXICAN TACO CART BOYFRIEND.
And Henry, who was still on the other side of the street.
So now I had to stand there and wait for the light to turn red so that Henry could cross.
“WHY DIDN’T YOU CROSS WITH ME?!” I cried, when we were finally reunited.
“Because they had a green light!?” he answered incredulously.
“Yeah, but that guy told us to go.”
“THEY HAD A GREEN LIGHT. WE DID NOT HAVE THE RIGHT OF WAY.”
Ugh, I hate when he knows rules.
Anyway, he said he didn’t even see that guy wave us across because he was looking the other direction, watching the streetlight, and the next thing he knew, I was leaping to the other side like a baby deer.
Anyway, I survived, thanks for your concern Henry.
Then we came home and I tried to convince Henry to turn his gift from Chooch into a pin. He won’t.
Speaking of Chooch, I think he was at the library during all of this…?
Later that afternoon, I met Jiyong for our 4th language exchange meet-up and I feel like this was our best meeting yet. I’m definitely getting more comfortable with her and we had a great conversation at Panera in Oakland for three hours! We talked about everything from cemeteries to maternity leave to The Cure (I was wearing one of my Cure shirts and then “Friday I’m In Love” came on the Panera soundsystem so that was an easy segue to my FAMOUS CURE STORY that literally everyone who knows me has to endure at least 8 times), we talked about Ouzo and our personal drinking habits (she and I both one-and-doners) to Song Mino to pierogies.
I’m really enjoying this friendship! She was is a really lovely girl and I’m happy that I stepped out of my comfort zone by suggesting that we meet in person.
She brought this really book she has where it takes dialogue from “Friends” to help Koreans learn English, but in this case, it works well for me too. She read the English side and then I would read the Korean side, but my problem is that I can sightread Korean fairly well, but since I’m studying alone, I make the fatal mistake of NOT READING OUT LOUD. So I’m not getting any practice of actually saying the words because I’m a dumbass, and even though in my head I know how to say them, as soon as my mouth wraps around it, it comes out sounding like garbage.
Since meeting her, I have been trying to recite things more when I’m alone, but I still read out loud at the speed of a kindergartner. Jiyong said that I can read it well, and I appreciate that, but I need to really work on speeding it up so I don’t sound like Encino Man.
We only did one chapter and I was fucking sweating by the end. Literally. I had to pull my shirt away from my body and fan myself. “I feel like I just exercised!” I exclaimed, and she just laughed and said, “Cute.”
I gave her this little souvenir handbook of Pittsburghese that I bought on Friday at the History Center. Obviously I don’t want her to start saying “Yinz” or “dahn’ere” (down there) or anything because that’s a huge language foul, but I thought it would be a fun keepsake for her for when she goes back to Korea. Plus, in addition to the weird vernacular, there are legit things in there too, like various food explanations (haluski, etc.).
She asked me if I would want to come to her place next Saturday to make kimbap and YES OF COURSE I WANT TO! Henry thinks this is hilarious because he makes kimbap from time to time and I have never expressed any desire to learn or help, but I want to learn everything that Jiyong is willing to teach me!
I’m not sure if I mentioned this already, but in our last meet-up, we were talking about G-Dragon and I said that for our last trip to Korea, we wanted to stay at his pension in Pocheon, but the website said that guests have to be 19+, no exceptions. Obviously, Henry wasn’t going to call them to inquire further, and my Korean is definitely not good enough to attempt an email, so we never pressed the issue and just wrote it off.
A few days later, I was at work when I got a Kakao message from Jiyong – she emailed the pension all on her own and asked on behalf of us if a 13-year-old was permitted to stay there, and they told her yes! She did that for me!!
Anyway, when we were talking about that yesterday, I mentioned that G-Dragon’s dad runs the place and she said that the person who emailed her back had the last name “Kwon.”
“Maybe I emailed with GD’s dad?!” she exclaimed. I love having a friend to talk with about these things!
Before we knew it, it was after 5 so we parted ways with the promise to meet again next week. Jiyong texted me pictures of the pages we went over so I am going to spend all week reading them out loud until I sound like a second-grader at least.
Also, the word for lesbian in Korean is lesbian – thanks for teaching me that, “Friends” dialogue book!
Henry got us Subway for dinner because sometimes you just need to have Subway for dinner, and then we went to Sugar Spell Scoops for some after-dinner vegan ice cream. So, the thing with Sugar Spell is that they used to only vend various festivals, etc. and it’s nearly impossible to get any because the lines get so outrageously long. But sometime last year they opened a store front in Sharpsburg which isn’t a very trendy area – BLESS – so we didn’t have to deal with any assholes on our visit. (If this shop was in, say, Lawrenceville, I might never go.)
I wanted to go when they first opened, but their flavors in the beginning were really basic, like vanilla and chocolate, and I think Superman which I hate no matter who is making it, so I kind of put visiting this place on the backburner. But then Kara texted me last week and said they had blueberry lavender so that reignited my interest in this place!
The guy who scooped for us last night was SO NICE AND PERSONABLE. He kept having cone malfunctions (the sugar cones kept breaking on him) but he handled the pressure like a champ – it helped that we were the only people in line at that time, probably, and also that we weren’t getting all huffy about it. If anything, it gave me more time to figure out what I wanted – it’s weird having legit vegan options!
(I’m not vegan, just a plain veg, but I do opt for vegan when available.)
Chooch got Dunkaroos and let me taste it – IT WAS PHENOMENAL. You could taste the icing and the scoop was dense with moist dunkaroo bits. The scooper even took time to talk to Chooch about Dunkaroos, since they were before his time.
Honestly, the service is always half of the experience so based on this guy alone, I could easily see myself making this my new go-to ice cream shop especially since Millie’s is so fucking annoying to me lately.
I REALLY WANTED to get Dunkaroos as well, but I have this thing where we all need to get something different, so I went with the cherry chocolate chip and I must say – no regerts here. It was great!
The vegan ice cream I have had in the past (*cough*Millie’s*cough*) has usually been practically devoid of flavor and has a strange texture, but this was loaded with palate-pleasers. The consistency wasn’t too far off from dairy-based ice cream and it didn’t leave me feeling like I was a growing a brick-baby inside me afterward.
Notice I went with a cake cone to spare the poor scooper after he went through two bad cones on his journey to create Chooch’s dunakroos scoop.
I made Henry order the Blueberries n’ Biscotti sundae (he claims he was “probably going to order that anyway, so there”) because it came with GLITTER SPRINKLES.
He chose the Blue Moon ice cream to go with it, which is lemon-based, and I have to say, if I thought I had ordering remorse after trying Chooch’s, my taste of Henry’s sundae basically exiled me to the Land of Poor Choices. IT WAS SO GOOD and unlike any sundae I have ever tasted.
Henry refused to show emotions, as usual, but he was really happy with his sundae. I mean, doesn’t it suit him so well?!
I will definitely be returning to this place. They’re only open Friday – Sunday and their flavors change every day. I want to try every single one.
Afterward, I want to walk around that street for a bit because I’m still doing that Job Spotter thing where I take pictures of Help Wanted signs and submit it for points which can be redeemed for Amazon gift cards, lol. It’s so stupid but I like doing it so leave me alone. However, Chooch remembered that he has the app too so then we started fighting over who was going to get the pictures first (if you submit the same one at the same time as someone else, they reject it as a duplicate). Chooch beat me at getting the first one we came upon and I was so mad so then I got the next one after forcibly shoving him out of the way and then we had a big fight and Henry was like WHO CARES?!!?!? THIS IS STUPID!!! and then Chooch stormed off ahead of us and it was Big Trouble in Little Sharpsburg but then eventually we all moved on.
Me: Henry, please stand here and point at that sign.
Honestly, this picture might be peak “THE SERVICE” for me.
Capped off the night watching “Us” which Chooch and I had already seen at the theater with Janna, but Henry wanted to watch it so I felt obligated to watch it with him in case he didn’t understand it (lol). I like that movie a lot.
Then right as I was starting to fall asleep that night, I sat up in bed because I smelled smoke which is the scariest smell to smell late at night, scarier even than Henry’s farts. So Henry jumped out of bed and got all VOLUNTEER FIREFIGHTER mode. He threw on all his clothes and walked across the street to try and determined where it was coming from. We started hearing sirens almost immediately so knew we didn’t have to make the call, but it was scary because smoke had made it all the way to our street. We decided to drive and see where the fire was coming from, and it was a house a few blocks away from us which made me feel sick to my stomach (I was hoping it was just an empty building on West Liberty Ave, not someone’s home) but we found out this morning that no one was hurt (I was only worried about the possibility of animals being hurt so I’m hoping that “no one” also includes pets) so that’s a relief.
YEAH, THAT WAS MY SATURDAY, HOW WAS YOURS.