May 222020
 

This week’s list is here for you with no intro because who cares.

  1. Another quarantine work week in the books.

This week was fine but hectic. I had so many check-in calls this week (yesterday especially) that Chooch was like, “Honestly, how are you supposed to do your actual work?” and I was like, “One day when you’re the big boss of some nerdy tech company, remember that and be good to your minions.” I don’t know why I dislike these calls so much, I guess because I feel pressure to act like I’m all fine and dandy and not bursting out into tears over a commercial that I remembered from 1999. You know how it is. However, yesterday in my video call, I discovered that I could use my own pictures as backgrounds so I got to talk to one of my groups from Bukchon Hanok Village in Seoul. That was fun. But then my cat Drew was like, “NOW THEY CANNOT SEE ME SKULKING AROUND IN THE BACKGROUND” so I went back to my typical background of “Cluttered House in Brookline.”

(Meanwhile, Chooch was just on a call with one of his classes and he goes, “I already know all of this. I’m leaving.” AND HE LEFT THE CALL! JUST LIKE THAT! He didn’t even say bye! Motion to be more like Chooch? Aye!)

We had one department-wide call as well and the director ended the call with something like, “I miss you guys and hope to see you again” which made me burst into tears. I mean, I don’t mind working from home, don’t get me wrong, and I for sure don’t miss the trolley, but I do miss things about the office, like saying hi to some people and rolling my eyes at others  (don’t worry, it’s to their faces, so it’s not a secret). I miss my jack o’ lantern of weird snacks. I miss Sue bringing in Fig Bars and personally delivering a blueberry one to me because she knows they’re my favorites. I miss all the cute stuff on my desk (OMG did I turn off my marquee?!!? Oh well, batteries are dead if not lol).  I miss my lunch break walks even though today it’s raining and kind of warm which means the stench of piss would be in full effect downtown. I miss walking over to my old side of the floor to tell Glenn and Todd dumb stories about my neighborhood (it’s not the same when I have to email them!).

2. Produce Attack

Ever since the whole situation with Slut Life started and Henry gave HNC my phone number so that we could corroborate the facts on how Slut Life almost ran me over,  I will get occasional texts from him, always neighborhood-related. Lately, they have been things like, “I have some baked goods from La Gourmandine, do you want them?” and like, yes, yes, I do. But since I said yes once, it opened the floodgates to a whole new game of grocery sharing. The next day, he texted: “I have some extra romaine lettuce and celery – do you want it?” and no, I don’t, because I hate celery and romaine lettuce is my least favorite salad leaf, but I didn’t have the heart to say no, so he brought it over and did a socially-distanced hand-off with Henry on the porch (wow, that sounds erotic yet sad).

But then he called me earlier this week and I missed the call so he left a voicemail that said to call him, which is the worst kind of voicemail ever because OMG did he find my blog?? So I called him back and he explained that pre-corona, he used to volunteer with the food bank and got to know some lady there, and now she was across the street in the church parking lot, handing out extra food to anyone who needed it and I didn’t want to say no, so I just thanked him and said I would try to make it over there, but hello, I was working. So I didn’t drop everything and run over there, you can understand, especially when we have food and I didn’t want to, you know, take food away from people who might really need it. So I didn’t go out there, but then Chooch, who was in the front yard making a sculpture out of nature for his sculpture class, came in and said, “Chris wants you to call him.” THE FUCK. So I called him and he was like, “Yeah if you’re going to go over there to get food, you better do it now because she’s getting ready to leave” and I was like, “Oh that’s OK, I’ll catch her another time, I’m good for now” so then he texted me a bit later and said that he got too much stuff for her and would I like some apples and two peppers and potatoes?

UGH.

Henry thinks this is wonderfully hilarious and that I deserve it after all the years I’ve hassled him with the fake HNC bromance.

So he brought he produce over and then an hour later said, “Hey I got this blueberry crumble cake but only wanted a pc*, do you guys want the rest?” and then sent me a picture of it.

AND THUMBPRINT COOKIES!

AND THEN SOME TYPE OF BUNS WITH PEPPER IN IT!

I mean, I do appreciate the baked goods, though. It’s the neighborly contact that I’m not down with. I hate when people call me! It makes me feel very attacked.

3. A TAEMIN MUKBANG*!

In case you don’t know, I have a fetish where I love to watch G-Dragon and Taemin eat. I will for real sit on my couch and watch video after video on YouTube of eating compilations. Drinking, too! The other day, Taemin gifted his fans with a video of him eating at a restaurant and it made me squeal like a little fucking middle school bitch, you guys. Ugh, his joy of eating is so contagious – how can you not sit here and smile like a lunatic while watching him shovel it in?! (Meanwhile, Henry can eat the smallest, softest morsel of food in my presence and I will shriek, “OMG YOU ARE SO LOUD! UGH, YOUR MOUTH-SOUNDS ARE DISGUSTING!! DO YOU WANT TO DIE?!!?”)

***In Korea, there is this phenomenon where people will post videos/livestreams of themselves eating tremendous amounts of food, usually with the microphone clipped to their collar so you can really hear the chewing. It’s call “mukbang” which literally means “eat room.” Some of these people make millions of dollars off it! My favorite mukbang channel is this small girl who just absolutely binges, it’s amazing.

I hate this picture so much.

4. BANANA SHIRT!

I bought this banana shirt. Some of the bananas have boobs. I’ll probably still wear this to work though, if we ever get to go back.

5. Row that fucking boat out of my head

For the past week, I have QUITE INEXPLICABLY had “Michael Row Your Boat Ashore” stuck in my head. Sometimes I will let the “hallelujah” part slip out of my mouth and it’s very concerning.

The first time I heard this song was when we had to sing it in kindergarten. For a really long time, I thought the song was about my classmate Mike S.,  because he was the only Michael I knew at the time so clearly he was the only Michael in the whole world and for fuck’s sake, row that damn boat so we can stop singing this song, Mike!

My mind’s jukebox also has “It’s a Small World” and “Gloria” by Laura Branigan queued up to play at a moment’s notice, so be jealous you’re not in my head, guys.

****

Well, that’s all I feel like writing about on the spot. I’ll sign off now with a rare of my cats in the same spot:

 

 

May 082020
 

Here are some things (FIVE to be exact) that I will be talking (TYPING) about today. Put your reading glasses on. (Speaking of, I need those now I think.) But first, random picture of Drew and a dead plant in a pumpkin planter.

  1. Geromino Jeff

The other night, I was laying in bed, trying to fall asleep, when OUT OF THE BLUE (or, in Korean, kapchuggi) I had this vivid flashback to the time my ex-boyfriend Jeff  told me this story about how when he was super little, maybe like 4 or something, he was in the backseat of his mom’s car, and somehow, as she was driving down the road, he managed TO FALL OUT OF THE CAR?! This was clearly the 80s when kids graduated from car seats at age 1 probably, so I’m sure he was just popping a squat in the back without the confines of a Graco straight jacket holding him inside a cushioned bucket, so I guess back then something like this happening was more plausible. If I remember the story correctly, his mom didn’t notice right away so he was just like, chilling on the side of the road, I guess. I think he said it wasn’t a major highway, and he didn’t get hurt, so I imagine it must have been a small, back road in their hometown (he grew up in a hick-ish town about an hour outside of Pittsburgh where you could essentially fall out of your mom’s backseat and not see another car pass you for quite some time while you’re crouching in a field of cattails next to a rotting possum carcass.

Now, me being me, I latched on to this story HARD and made him tell it to me over and over like it was my favorite page in the Fucking Bedtime Stories for Young Adults Who Should Still Probably Be Living with Their Parents book. That’s my sociopathic personality—Ruby—winning out against the other more reasonable, empathetic ones.

Sometime after this, Jeff and I went out to dinner with his mom and stepdad, and my dad. I was 19 years old and had much less of a filter than I do now, so without even thinking about it, I blurted out that Jeff had told me the story of how he barrel-rolled out of a moving car except that I start cracking up so bad that I could barely finish saying it and I was also crying & choking because my giddiness comes at me HARD. In my dumb head, I assumed that Jeff’s mom would join me in laughing at this hilarious memory, but she was HORRIFIED and said, “That was one of the worst moments of my entire life” and then the tone grew super somber except that I still wanted to continue laughing so now I was in physical pain trying to use all of my power and brain-drawer of sad memories to stifle it.

Later on, Jeff’s stepdad asked me how the job search was going which was great because I told Jeff earlier in the day to make sure no one said anything about that because I didn’t want my dad to know I quit my job because then he would figure out that my mom was paying my bills, so it was a great dinner.

Anyway, the whole point of this was that when I remembered it the other night, I started involuntarily cackling, like side-splittingly, to the point where Henry woke up and mumbled, “What” with a sludge of reservation in his tone because my laughter scares him lots. So I told him the story and he slurred, “Yeah, you told me that before” and fell back asleep WITHOUT EVEN A TINY CHUCKLE. Wow, Team Jeff’s Mom, I guess.

2. Zoinks

Wednesday night, Chooch and I went on a stealthy nighttime stroll around the neighborhood. There are less people out at night now which makes social distancing easier but it’s also sketchy because, you know, Brookline. So we stick to the sidewalk on the main road to be safe DON’T WORRY! On our way back, we were in the middle of a conversation (thankful I have a teenager who still talks to me but also sometimes he talks too much; I’m never satisfied) when a car full of young people drove by and screamed something in jibberish at us from their open windows. Look, I’m a highly sensitive person, so not only did I scream, nay—shriek, but my feet fucking left the ground. Like the force of my startled yelp boosted me into the air long enough for my fucking feet to pedal the air.

“Did you just actually SCREAM? Oh my god, you’re so embarrassing,” Chooch muttered.

“Why, did you know them!?” I cried, hand still clutching my pearls.

“No! But now what if you inspired them to turn around and do it again? Oh my god, I hate you. You’re like Shaggy from Scooby Doo!” and then he kept yelling ZOINKS at me and I was like STFU.

It was scary, OK?!

Not as embarrassing as the time Henry and I were walking and some kid yelled out of a moving car (without falling out of it, a la Jeff), “Your shoe’s untied!” and I was like, “OMG thank you so much!” and bent down to tie my shoe which was not in fact untied because it didn’t even have laces.

“You’re an idiot,” Henry muttered and left me there to figure it out on my own.

3. Fufu for MeMe

A few weeks ago, I read this book called Slay and in this book, there was the briefest mention of a Ghanaian comfort food called FUFU, which is a soft bread-like foodstuffs made from plantains and cassava, which is then used as a serving device for soups or stews, such as PEANUT STEW. I of course latched on to this, the greater message of the book flitting out of my brain like a spurned butterfly of social consciousness. I started sending Henry recipes for it, which then turned into him watching one YouTube video after another of Ghanaian women churning out fufu on their stovetops, until he was finally ready to commit to the cause.

And this is how, Sunday evening, our house was ALIVE with appetizing African aromas. Henry was unhappy with the consistency of his final fufu, but it tasted AMAZING. You just plop a fistful of it in a bowl and pour whatever soup or stew your heart desires (I mean, you have to make it first, don’t just expect your heart to conjure it up, unless you’ve got that kind of magic, and if that’s the case, do you need a roommate?) around the fufu hill. To be most traditional about it, you should pull pieces of fufu from the mound and press them down into tiny bowls in which to scoop up the soup.

The fufu was a fucking delight, but the stew was the real winner here. It was filled with sweet potatoes, tomatoes, some other things probably, with fresh peanut butter used in the stew-y part, and garnished with peanuts.

I mean, it doesn’t make for the most attractive meal, but WE EAT WITH OUR MOUTHS, NOT OUR EYES.

In one of the books I read earlier in the week, they had Persian jeweled rice so now I’m hounding him for that and he’s all, “ORANGE BLOSSOM WATER? I NEED ORANGE BLOSSOM WATER FOR THIS?” Lol. No one ever said being with me is easy.

4. Subway Update

Henry is slowly but surely making progress on my massive Seoul subway wall art. I think he now he has all the lights in place, but they haveto be adjusted so that they match the colors of the lines they’re representing, and he still needs to get a sheet of plexiglass to attach the actual subway map to, then he has to build a frame for it, and finally attach the sound box thingie that will enable it to play the actual subway jingles at a press of a button.

Pray for him.

    5. Nightmare Nun

Wednesday night, I had this awful dream where I was a kid, maybe 7 or 8, and I was speed-walking along a street in my old hometown, Old Clairton Rd, with a mom who wasn’t actually my IRL mom, and a man who was a plain-clothed priest. We were in a hurry yet trying to remain inconspicuous, because presumably someone was after us/me. I kept hearing this low, demonic grumbling all around me, coming from the trees and empty houses. We were headed toward my old middle school and then turned down a road that I used to drive on all of the time when I still lived out that way yet I can’t remember the name of it. There were people standing outside of their houses on this street and they were yelling things at us, but the priest kept shielding me from them and was shouting, “DON’T LISTEN TO THEM” over and over and this when I realized that something was wrong with me, and I was crying but they kept dragging me along with them, down this residential street which was never scary to me at all in real life because it’s like the quintessential suburban utopia, houses with actual flower boxes hanging outside of their windows and shutters painted thoughtfully to match the aesthetics of the rest of the house – you know these houses. WHERE FAMILIES ACTUALLY SIT DOWN AND EAT DINNER TOGETHER, probably. But whatever.

In real life, when you get to the bottom of this street, there’s an intersection with other residential streets, and then they all spill out onto one main road that take you past the police station. But in my dream, there was an empty parking lot at the end of the road, one that hadn’t been used in some time, so there were cracks in the pavement with weeds growing through them. I know this because I was walking with my eyes down. We all stopped here in this parking lot and I turned around to say something to my mom, but before I could finish, she started to scream and as she screamed her mouth grew wider and wider until the red-tinged silhouette of a nun came out of her mouth and FLEW INTO ME WHILE YELLING A BUNCH OF SCARY JIBBERISH and in real life, I woke up SCREAMING THE JIBBERISH THAT THE NUN WAS SAYING and my cat Drew woke up on my chest and looked at me over her shoulder like, “THE FUCK IS WRONG WITH YOU” and as I waited for my heart rate to go down, I realized that the jibberish the nun was saying was the SAME JIBBERISH THOSE KIDS SCREAMED AT ME EARLIER THAT NIGHT FROM THEIR CAR.

****

Welp, that’s all for me. Gotta get ready for my loathsome Friday late shift. :(

Apr 242020
 

Guys, hold the phone – tomorrow is Chooch’s 14th birthday so I’m devoting today’s Friday Five to my five favorite birthday parties that I threw him hahaha because it’s all about me, why bother asking him for his opinion?!

It’s going to be weird not having a party for him tomorrow or taking him to dinner at the very least, but we will make the best of it and for as much as I scream at him for acting spoiled, he’s actually not that bad (considering who his mother is) and he’s pretty content with laying low and having a Netflix Party with some of his friends. 14 is a weird age, anyway.

OK, in no particular order, here are some of the birthday parties he’s had! Click on the links to go to the original blog post for each party, where you can see more pictures and probably multiple paragraphs where I complain about how stressed out I was, make me a martyr already.

  1. Rollerskating Party

This is kind of weird to include this one on the list because it was his first birthday party right after the BLOG CONTROVERSY at his old Catholic school wherein I wrote about some of the bitch-moms and they found it and there was a confrontation and shit got real and then they punished me by not letting their kids go to his party, because yes – I’m the one who suffered there. Some of the kids did still come, but we had a lot of friends who turned this into one of the most funnest parties ever! We rented out the roller rink and even though one of my friend’s son’s fell and broke his wrist, it was quite a nice 6th birthday!

We had become pals with the people who ran the rink at the time (it was since taken over by some not-great people with questionable beliefs so we don’t go there anymore), and they were so generous with their contributions to the party!

2. THE CAT PARTY!!

I was so proud of how this party turned out! We had all kinds of cat-themed food and games and a cat-themed photo booth and so many people came and Lisa’s baby puked on Janna and Bill had a feud with a kid and stole one of his toys and threw it out when he was in the porta-john, and seriously, when I think back on these parties, I love my friends so much, lol.

Bill and Jessi came all the way from Michigan (I mean, this can be said for nearly every one of Chooch’s birthday parties though, they are legit family to us, man) and it was so much fun decorating cat cookies the night before. Party prep is so much more tolerable when you’re drinking with friends!

This party was a great blend of friends, family, and Chooch’s school friends. Let’s be real though, his real friends are my friends, which should be annoying to me but I guess I’m OK with sharing my friends with him. (Most of them like him better than me anyway, lol!)

3. The Disney Shocker

For Chooch’s 10th birthday, we took him on a surprise road trip to Disney World. He thought we were going to visit Henry’s “Uncle Walt” right up until we arrived in the parking lot of Disney, he’s so dense. This one was really hard for us to pull off because we are not rich people and, you know, Disney ain’t cheap, yo. We were even less rich 4 years ago so it was nothing short of a miracle that we managed to scrounge together the funds to make this happen. He was so happy though and this honestly was such a huge win for us as parents. I love giving the gift of EXPERIENCE!!

4. The Zombie Party

cake

I just remember that a bunch of people showed up for this at my mom’s house and we had a little graveyard set up where people could get their photos taken and Bill accidentally scared Chooch too hard and made him cry, which was promptly added to the list of Times Bill Accidentally Made My Kid Cry (surprisingly, many times, but they are still best douche-cups for life!).

billchoochfeast

I’m pretty sure I have a picture of Chooch crying on the actual blog post, so you don’t forget to click those hyperlinks!

charlievictim

My friends are such great sports!

kara

Kara and her son Harland, who I can barely remember ever being that tiny!! He’s so tall now!

I’ll also remember this as the day my friend Christy (Chooch’s godmother) told me she was pregnant with twins!

5. The Surprise Butterfly Party

IMG_0614

For Chooch’s 11th party, I realized that while we had that surprise birthday trip to Disney, we never actually had a surprise PARTY for Chooch. And I used to be the QUEEN of throwing surprise parties! It was like, my thing back in the day, to the point where probably everyone expected one eventually. But look, you have to know this thing about me: I thrive on taking things that people HATE and using those as themes because I’m fucking rotten.

TO THE CORE.

I mean, I have a rotten apple tattooed on my arm for God’s sake.

My child is not exempt from my devious ways.

Anyway, he was surprised and annoyed all at once, and then happy when he looked around and saw the people who were here but tried to play it off by saying he was just happy for getting a balloon, because he resorts to untimely awkwardness just like his dad.

Oh wait, I mean, his mom.

Tomorrow will be low-key, but I will still try to make his 14th memorable. I mean, turning 14 during a pandemic is memorable in and of itself, I guess.

Apr 102020
 

*(People with calendars, I guess.) Anyway, here’s another work week, pandemic-style. Keeping track of our mundane lockdown life is at least giving me something to do, I guess. 

Monday:

I literally can’t think of a single highlight. Work was normal. The weather was nice so Chooch and I went for a quick walk during my break and saw Wesley’s mom ugh. We talked from afar and she gushed about how wonderful Chooch is and I guess that’s how Glenn feels whenever people at work gush about how wonderful I am.

Our neighbors had friends over that night because evidently you can only contract COVID from strangers not friends.

Ugh that generation. Whatever comes after Millennials. I can never remember. 

And our neighbors on the other side have had every single family member and their respective units in and out too like a fucking Grand Central Coronastation.

I think people misunderstand the concept of social distancing, but OK.

TUESDAY:

Some ragtag family oozed past our house and the Kindergarten-aged daughter must have fallen or something because she was crying and her fat dad in the neon yellow construction company t-shirt barked, “YOU’RE FINE” and she was like, “Noooo I need a Band-aid” and he was like, “WHERE THE HELL DO YOU THINK I’M GOING TO GET A BAND-AID RIGHT NOW?! JUST WAIT UNTIL WE GET HOME!!!” and if I had had a fishing rod, I would have flung a Jojo Siwa Band-Aid to them from my window, in compliance with social distancing, but I do not have a fishing rod, or a robot that I could have sent out on my behalf, Band-aid presented all….robotically from a tray.

Figures, the one time I have an urge to be nice to a child…

Thanks, COVID-19, for keeping me true to myself.

By the time Henry came home from work, I had so much stored-up energy, that I took to sprinting from one side of the house to the other, which eventually made Chooch snap because he was “on a call” with his friend Markie which only entails them bickering over Minecraft and Markie saying, “That’s what she said” as a response to everything, only making sense .01% of the time. Finally, Chooch got up and came at me so I grabbed a bottle of Peppermint Schnapps and then he in turn snatched one of those long stove lighter things in retaliation and lots of tribal screaming ensued, all the while Henry kept calm and cooked on in the kitchen.

The church across the street had a super loud drive-in broadcast that night, the word of the Lord blasting out from loud speakers, permeating through the ether and straight into my house which I thought was kind of rude, but also fitting to the theme of the night because earlier I had found some new African gospel workout called Afro-Praise that included PRAISE PULSES, Zulu dancing, and some lady unable to get up off the floor at the end.

I live for these kinds of workouts. 

Wound down with a matcha latte made from matcha powder I bought at Osulloc in Seoul, one of the Osulloc items that TSA did not steal from my luggage in New York.

Assholes.

Oh, we are certainly enjoying these fun days together, lol.

Wednesday

1:00am Storm!! I actually thought it was a tornado and got very scared. 

I did this African dance cardio workout and I think I’m obsessed with that…genre? of aerobics now. Kpop cardio will forever be my favorite though, and my boy Give Me Five Thailand has continued to upload new routine from his house during the stay at home order. I love him!

At some point during the day, Chooch disappeared. It turned out he was in his room, actually reading!! I was so happy about this…until I found out that he was reading a Shane Dawson’s MEMOIRS. He’s banned from our house, but apparently I bought him this damn book several years ago, so I GUESS I ONLY HAVE MYSELF TO BLAME.

“You bought me PewDiePie’s book, too,” Chooch said in this shitty “Who’s the asshole now?” tone.

A conversation:

‪Me: I wish I was skinny so I didn’t have to carve out time to exercise and I could just sit here all day and read instead. ‬

‪CHOOCH:‬ THATS why you want to be skinny? Ok. Wow.

(I know, how archaic of me. Omg I want to be skinny. Wah wah wah. But honestly, I should have said “I wish exercise wasn’t necessary…” TOO LATE ERIN. TOO LATE TO BACKTRACK. YOU SAID IT. NOW WE ALL KNOW U HAVE BARBIE DOLL BODY IDEOLOGIES.)

We walked to Dunkin’ Donuts – they are open for pick-up only so Henry orders from the app and then runs in to retrieve our drinks. It’s like, a tiny treat we give ourselves to give life the appearance of being normal for several minutes. On the way there, we were talking about how it’s weird when people don’t have any pets, and Chooch accused Henry of not having any childhood pets, to which Henry defiantly spat that he had dogs and cats growing up and now he has, shoots us a disgusted look over his shoulder, “animals.”

WOW. 

I might have nearly peed my pants right there on the sidewalk. I’m an emotional time bomb. 

THURSDAY

Oh look, another day. Our face masks arrived from Korea. Sorry, I didn’t feel like jumping on the bandanna bandwagon when I can order masks from Korea and get them in like 4 days, free shipping. God, I love you Korea.

Speaking of Korean face masks, Chooch treated himself to a spa night:

I finished “Gingerbread,” a book that I had been struggling to read for a week and I went from hating it to loving it, I think?! I can’t be sure, but I watched an interview with the author, Helen Oyeyemi, and I for sure love her, at least.

FRIDAY

The Easter decorations I ordered from Oriental Trading arrived. Easter is my second favorite holiday for some reason (actually I know why but maybe we can wait until Easter to talk about that ok cool) and I am determined to make this one as “normal” as possible even though we’re essentially confined to the house. So we’ll see how that goes.

Other than that, the highlights of today were:

  • My favorite booktuber Kat uploaded her March book review video;
  • Gina B uploaded a new 20 minute walking workout

Wow. My days are so full!

Ah, perspective. Perspective.

My workweek is officially over, dinner has been eaten, and now I’m making Henry watch these fucking vanilla Christian YouTube videos about “fun family Easter games.” It’s, a thing. This one broad keeps interrupting herself to coo at her baby and then she knocked over her camera with her head so that was more entertaining than any of the games she’s talking about.

Now we’re watching this really annoying family with 87 subscribers hide Easter eggs from each other and it’s so cringey. This is totally our new version of making fun of birthday party videos.

Goodbye.

Apr 032020
 

Look. I’m over this. All the days blend together. What did I do on Monday? THE SAME THING I DO EVERYDAY, APPARENTLY. So here are some highlights broken up into five categories I guess, because I have little left to give. Full day recaps? To quote the letter HNC wrote the landlord, “that ain’t happening.”

  1. BAKED GOODS

Chooch has been on a roll with the baking. Here are the delights he whipped up over the course the week. Not shown: the healthy banana pancakes he made for breakfast on Thursday which were delicious but the recipe told him to cook them for 3 minutes before flipping and we almost got smoked out of the house.

Healthy carrot muffins. God yes. 

Weight Watcher-approved lemon bars. I refuse to believe these were WW-approved, and I’m not doing WW or anything but I appreciate that Chooch considers the fact that I am uber-conscious about the food I eat, especially now that we’re on lockdown and overeating is soooo easy to succumb to. Trust me, I would love to sit around all day and snack but I have to try even harder now to not do that!

37-calorie brownies – these were a big hit!

He just needs to work on presentation, haha.

2. FIGHTS

  • I lost my shit on Tuesday because Chooch watches Shane Dawson videos everyday (after like a three year hiatus!!), and if he’s not watching Shawn, he’s watching Shane’s boyfriend Ryland, whose stupid sister is always making appearances and I might perhaps hate her the most. So I banned all three of them from our house. “AND THEIR STUPID FUCKING FRIEND WITH THE GLASSES TOO!” “Garrett?!” Chooch cried. “Yes, that douchebag! I don’t want to fucking see his face or hear his voice!” “How do you even know him?” Chooch cried, and I screamed, “BECAUSE OF THAT ONE VIDEO WHERE RYLAND AND HIS DUMB SISTER TRY TO SPEND NOTHING FOR ONE DAY AND THEY GO TO HIS HOUSE AND HE MAKES THEM LUNCH FROM SHIT HE BOUGHT AT 7-ELEVEN AND MAKES THEM SIT ON THE FLOOR BC HE JUST CAME BACK FROM JAPAN.” Chooch’s face lit up with question marks. “You left that video on the TV the other day when you went to your room and your dad and I watched almost the whole thing because we had no COVID-motivation to turn it off!” Honestly, even if I have headphones on while I’m working, I can hear every single one of those idiots’ voices over top of it and it gets under my skin so much. WHY DO THEY SCREAM SO MUCH?! I HATE THEM! THEY ARE WORTHLESS! FAMOUS FOR ABSOLUTELY NOTHING!! 
  • Henry and Chooch fought over the carrots for the previously-mentioned carrot muffins.
  • HNC’S WIFE AND SLUT LIFE HAD A FIGHT WEDNESDAY EVENING FROM THEIR RESPECTIVE PORCHES!!! I couldn’t hear what was said because it was really windy and we live on a busy street, but I was excited to see a fight that complied with social distancing guidelines.
  • Me vs Henry, re: everything down to his breathing.
  • Chooch vs me, re: both of us knowing everything.

3. WORK

  • I miss my co-workers, but the ones I have at home are pretty great. Fine, even Chooch, who today said, “Teamwork makes the dream work” when I helped him fit some crap in his backpack. “Wow, that’s the second time I heard that since yesterday!” I laughed, and he said, “Yeah, I only said it because I heard someone say it on the work call you were on yesterday.” Ugh. I will say though that at least when I’m in the office, no one steals my seat if I get up for more coffee.

  • I mentioned already here that Tuesday was Cheryl’s last day so Amber arranged a virtual toast for her. It was super awkward, but I had luckily had done all of my crying earlier that day when Cheryl and I were emailing with each other for the last time. I chose strawberry soju for my toast of choice. It was a good decision.

  • I keep it cold enough in the house that a blanket is necessary, to help me feel like I’m actually in the office. 
  • Yeah, I have nothing exciting to say about work. We’re all kind of shell-shocked, I think. We have these check-in calls and everyone either seems starved for conversation or speechless. On one of the calls, one of my co-workers told this 15-minute long story about people hiding wine outside of her house, and something about Malort, I actually have no idea what was happening so we all just laughed nervously. It all happened so fast yet also dragged on for an eternity, please explain how that’s possible. Time is a mystery during a pandemic.

4. BOOKS

  • I can’t tell you how impeccable my timing was when I decided I wanted to carve out time for reading. Books have been my saving grace during lockdown At first, I was so sad that the library was closed, but then I remembered that Chooch has an old Kindle, so my new thing, while working through the stockpile I was able to check out from the library on that last day (I only have 4 more left though!!), is to download both the ebook and audio versions of books so that I can listen to them while I’m working. I HAVE to have the print copy of books in front of me while listening to them though because otherwise I will zone out and not pay attention. Obviously, I have to pause it a lot if I’m working on something that requires my undivided attention, but it has been going pretty well. I can’t do this in the office though because I like to be aware of my surroundings. I guess I’m just weird. 
  • I read two REALLY EXCELLENT books in a row, yesterday and today, and that has really given me life, you guys. I will talk about them in my APRIL book recap so look forward to that I guess? I busy myself by adding books to my “Want to read” shelf on Goodreads and watching BookTube videos to get hyped on new books. It’s really helping to distract me from the doom and gloom of the outside world.

DEPRESSION & OTHER MINUTIAE

  • I admit it, I’m fully depressed at this point. To be fair, I’m bipolar and my depression comes and goes like leaves in the wind (literally) so I could have been depressed right now even without a pandemic acting as a catalyst. But I am really struggling. I’m one of those people who are both introvert ad extrovert, depending on the situation, so the prospect of being housebound only appeals to a small percent of my brain, while the rest of me is like I NEED TO BE IN THE OFFICE. I NEED TO MAKE MY ROUNDS AND TALK TO MY BUDDIES. I NEED TO GO ON MY DOWNTOWN LUNCH WALKS AND SEE WHAT STRANGE INTERACTIONS BEFALL ME. I NEED TO JUST BE OUT WITH PEOPLE. It can be a very confusing and contrary way of life, but this who I am and I am suffering. I have little energy and have to force myself to exercise everyday, I am finding that I am clamming up when I’m on group calls at work even if I have things to say, which is strange because you’d expect me to start blurting my own versions of people hiding wine stories, and god knows I have neighborhood to say! But instead, I say nothing because I’m tired and my soul aches. I still manage to get dressed most days, but I have stopped caring about my nails, even. I’m just sad. 
  • Snail mail must be back in vogue now that everyone is housebound because both of our card shops have enjoyed a jump in sales. I’m about to look for penpals. 
  • Right now, we were supposed to have been on a plane to Frankfurt. I know that there are much more important things to care about right, like being thankful for good health, family/cats, and having a job, and that if we all come out of this OK, we’ll go another time. But it still adds to the depression because we worked so hard to save the money for that trip and I feel super antsy and caged-in. Anyway, I gave back my vacation days because I didn’t want to use them if we weren’t going anywhere, but I did keep today off. I mean, it was no different from every other day, except that I didn’t have to sit at my desk and work. Sigh.

  • But on a good miscellaneous note, we got take-out from Zenith because they had the super coveted TOFISHY sandwiches on the menu. This is my FAVORITE THING that Zenith makes and I pretty much inhaled it. No one told me to slow-down, so I ate with piggish abandon.
  • Meanwhile, Slut Life has a blue convertible now so his music will be even more audible as he peels in and out of the driveway a thousand times a day. SRSLY WHERE IS HE GOING?! We have no idea, but I guess no one told him about the Stay Home order. Most of the time, he is only gone for 10-15 minutes before he comes back again! Then he goes through the process of struggling to park his dumb car in the tiny garage, only to leave again in a few minutes!! He doesn’t seem like a drug dealer, so then I thought maybe he’s a pizza delivery guy? Like, maybe he works at one of the local pizzerias and they have him stay home because of social distancing and then they call him when an order is ready to be picked up? Maybe he’s Doordash or Grub Hub? I mean, he’s not going far! 
  • I’m still on an MTV Challenge kick. I was watching some old highlight reel and Henry laughed quietly and whispered to himself, “Abram!” like he was delighted to see an old friend. Then he goes, “IS THAT BETH?” It’s so funny when Henry knows their names, lol. 
  • This song is really good. There’s a small guitar solo in it that has Chuck Mangione vibes and transports me back to the 80s, sitting in a booth at the Blue Flame with my pappap. Chuck Mangione came on the radio there a lot, at least in my memories.

OMG I’m so fucking sad. 

Mar 272020
 

Hello from Week 2 of Covid House Arrest. Things are still weird but I’m grateful that I have a job that allows us to work from home, where I can stay safe with Chooch who is mostly fine to be around, I guess. We both have our moments. Then Henry comes home and creates all of the waves. Anyway, here is a weekday recap because perhaps one day when Chooch is an old man, he will want to reflect on these times with his grandchildren who will shake their heads and ask, “You mean people in 2020 didn’t have Pluto pods to retreat to while the Space Medics eradicated the virus harbingers with lasers?” and Chooch will be all, “No, things were super primitive back then. Civilization had a lot of rebuilding to do post-Donald Trump.”

MONDAY

Oh great. Another week of no structure/routine/discipline. Chooch and I scream randomly now for no reason and respond to each other with aggressively curt “ok cool”s. Welcome to Hell House.

I decide early on that I won’t lose myself to news alerts. This lasts about 36 seconds and I’ve circled back to Chest Pain City.

Chooch lit crackers on fire and threw them outside into the rain. This is where we are now, activity-wise. Setting food aflame. Can we consider this some sort of school experiment? A home-ec/science crossover event?

“Put your headphones back on and listen to your dumb audio book,” Chooch spat after I told him to do something worthwhile.

My team at work has an email thread going where we’re sharing pictures of our pets but mine are sleeping in their secret spots so I share a picture of my non-furry pet instead – he is so happy!

He was in the middle of menacingly saying “what are you going to do with that?”

Henry forwarded both of us a text from the school and we both responded with CAPSLOCK’d shittiness, unbeknownst to each other. Mine was “OH FUCKING KAY.”

Chooch went outside to kick a soccer ball against the house and it hit him in the face, so I’m just going to go ahead and call that as my highlight.

Henry has been home for over an hour but is “napping.” Now we’re screaming MAKE FUCKING DINNER up the steps.

He finally came down and made dinner. I can’t remember what he made. Everything has melded together in my mind. I have to constantly look at my phone to see what day it is.

My friend Veronica alerted me to this!!

TUESDAY

Today is my mom’s birthday. Unrelated, Henry found her toilet paper and dropped it off on her porch. Weird timing, but happy birthday! Enjoy your toilet paper!

Meanwhile, Chooch and I are decidedly office nemeses now. I was trying to listen to an audiobook (“Station Eleven” – super good and um, very timely) but I kept hearing his stupid YouTube videos playing in the other room, even over my headphones so there was a lot of TURN IT DOWN!!!s happening. And he was like, “I can hear your stupid audio book through your headphones!” and I was like, “I HAVE TO KEEP IT LOUD TO BLOCK OUT YOUR STUPID SHIT AND THE BABIES CRYING NEXT DOOR!”

Then I had to call into a meeting and Chooch kept screaming, “SHE SAID YOU’RE ANNOYING!”

“I have it muted, dumb-stick,” I scoffed. Like, does he think I was born yesterday?

It really was a super long meeting though. In other work news, one of the group emails I was on featured a discussion about what cozy clothes we were wearing and I had zero will or desire to participate. I’m basically feral at this point. Don’t talk to me.

No wait, talk to me! I DON’T KNOW WHAT I WANT ANYMORE!

On my break, Chooch and I ran laps around the empty church parking lot across the street. I’m too afraid to venture anywhere farther than that.

Then we looked up allegedly “easy” vegan recipes that we could potentially make during the day since our chef isn’t home, but the first one I put on immediately wanted us to peel a potato and I screamed PEEL IT YOURSELF and started to look for another recipe video but lost interest at an alarming speed and put on a Booktube video instead. But then Chooch found some “Easy Naan-type bread” video but it called for lemon juice for some reason and we don’t have that, so he texted Henry “bring home lemon juice” 8x and Henry responded, “Do you need lemon juice?” because he thinks he’s so fucking funny, about as funny as a fifth grade science teacher from the 70s.

Anyway, Henry came home from work with the lemon juice and suddenly Chooch is a bread baker. I had zero hand in it, which is probably why it turned out ok. He came out of the kitchen with a ball of dough in his meat-mitts and said, “Mom! Look!” and I was like, “Holy shit, that looks like real dough and not that weird-ass paste shit we made last week!” which, to be fair, we determined was my fault because I threw the recipe in the air and just plopped everything together in a bowl at once, and apparently there is a reason why you need to mix the dry ingredients alone and then SLOWLY add the wet shit LITTLE BY LITTLE. Who knew?!

I guess a trillion bakers before me.

They turned out really good and we’re actually un-raw in the middle I like the ones we made last week.

Other than that, we just screamed at each other A LOT and fake-fought.

I finally started watching Itaewon Class that night and finished two books. Henry said, “I hate ‘Reading Erin'” and Chooch said, “Same.” Apparently I shush them too much and get really irritated when they try to live their lives around me.

Image result for itaewon class

Park Seo Joon is so good!

Then I finished reading “Confessions” by Kanae Minato (40th book of the year!) and went to bed.

WEDNESDAY

Somehow I broke my back. It’s probably from sitting in a non-office chair all fucking day long.

The law firm wanted people to submit selfies of their home work spaces and I looked much better in my other attempts but I had to use this one because Drew’s in the background. I dunno, kind of cheesy but I appreciated that they’re trying to do things like this to keep the mood light-hearted during these stressful times. It’s like, every time I start to feel like I’m going to have a heart attack, I remind myself that literally the whole entire world is in this together. Kind of make it seem a little less lonely?

Back to reality: Major mom/son conflict off and on all day. We are basically just siblings fighting control.

Henry came home and immediately started talking to me while I was clearly listening to an audio book so I snapped.

“She does this to me all day,” Chooch said, buddying up to Henry. “I hate Book Mother.”

“I hate Book Mother, too,” Henry mumbled but then Chooch and I reunited in our mutual need for dinner so we both turned on Henry WHO WENT AND DID LAUNDRY INSTEAD so we had to make our own dinner?! Faux-chicken nugs it is.

(EDITOR’S NOTE: Henry confirmed that he takes sanitary wipes into the laundromat so that he does not have to touch anything, because I am sure someone is probably side-eyeing up a storm.)

Oh wait back up: before Henry went to do laundry, he first had to take his daily “post-work nap” which lasts forever. While he was up there, I was scrolling through Instagram. My friend Jessy posted a video of her husband cutting down a tree in their yard with a chainsaw. My phone was still connected to the Bluetooth speaker in our bedroom so I let the video play on full blast, promoting a string of “WTF” and “fuck you” texts from Henry. Quarantine entertainment.

While Henry was doing laundry, we found a three-ingredient peanut butter cookie recipe but we didn’t have sugar substitute so Chooch texted Henry and asked him to get some but then proceeded to ignore all of Henry’s texts asking “WHAT KIND OF SUGAR SUB” because he was too engrossed in Minecraft which he has literally been playing since he was like 4 at this point when will it end. So Henry brought home a box of generic Splenda and Chooch and I had to open packet after packet to fill a half cup but halfway through a 1/4 cup, I decided to actually look at the recipe and felt suspiciously like we were doing it wrong – it was the wrong kind of sugar substitute! We needed granulated stuff that sounds like urethra. I forget what it’s called now. Anyway, Henry said to just use less and it would be fine but holy fucking shit Chooch essentially baked Splenda patties with a peanut butter essence. I had two cookies 90 minutes ago and my stomach hurts and I feel like my throat is coated with sweetener please send help, should I swallow fire?

We scream-laughed a lot today. We’re all perched on the lunacy fringe over here. Come visit. Oh wait, you can’t.

Watched the This Is Us season finale and promptly went in the backyard to dig my grave.

This drama premiered tonight in Korea and I hope that it finds its way to Netflix or Viki soon because KIM MYUNG SOO as a CAT? Yes.

‪Auto correct on Duolingo changed “butcher shop” to “bitch ship.” I have little else going on so this is in the running for highlight of the day. ‬

I’m going to bed soon, with the frightening wonder of what food project Chooch will attempt tomorrow.

THURSDAY

Woke up to a new Winner video! I shared it with my team at work, and received approx. zero replies.

I was so fidgety before logging on to work for my late shift that I, get this, CLEANED THE DISH STRAINER in the kitchen. I DID THAT! I don’t think I have ever performed an act of greater domesticity. COVID-19 has broken me.

Don’t worry, the rest of the kitchen is still an absolute pit.

While I was at the sink, I observed that HNC and Slut Life were both in the driveway!! HNC was fiddling around in his garage while Slut Life was preparing to drive out of his garage. I’m not sure if they had any interaction prior to this because I wasn’t paying attention, but I started watching just in time to catch Slut Life peel out of the driveway, causing HNC to stand at the bottom of the driveway, hands akimbo, watching him retreat while shaking his head in disgust.

I started speaking to Chooch in a new, made-up accent. He immediately asked me to stop.

Chooch was watching some video about death row inmates’ last meals and he’s angry for some reason that Timothy McVeigh chose two pints of mint chocolate chip ice cream.

“Why is that so terrible?” I asked.

“He probably got a stomach ache!” Chooch cried.

“He’ll probably be dead before he notices his stomach hurts!” I yelled and so that’s how we fought about mint chocolate chip ice cream.

Yay henry ordered us dinner from Zenith! He said when he went to get it, one of the owners asked, “Do Erin and Chooch have cabin fever yet?” I love that the Zenith people know us haha.

Yeah boi seitan BBQ, rice noodle salad, and pumpkin cake.

Chooch got lasagna and then remembered that he doesn’t like lasagna after he ate nearly the whole thing. Teenagers are fucking dumbos.

OMG Peenlop’s tongue lol.

Well, all hell just broke loose and we had a faux-battle because Chooch wants to make oatmeal raisin cookies and I was like, “But we got cake from Zenith” and he was like “YOU RUIN EVERYTHING” and I was like, “GOOD GOD JUST MAKE YOUR DUMB COOKIES, BITCH BOY” but he was like JUST FORGET IT and started fake-crying so then I went over and we started play-hitting and Drew was like THIS HOUSE IS STRESSFUL and then Henry tripped over the cat tunnel and I almost peed my pants and Henry was like YOU TWO ARE FUCKING ANNOYING and went upstairs to take a nap…at 5:45PM. Cool.

Meanwhile, Chooch the Crybaby is in the kitchen making his stupid cookies because he apparently has awakened a latent baking gene while in COVID-lockdown.

Here’s where we are right now, 7:30PM:

I wish Janna never showed him how to use this lighter!! (Actually, I secretly secondhand learned how to use it then too lol.)

Knife throwing starts next week.

Thursday ended with us watching the first two episodes of the new Kim Myung Soo drama that I posted the trailer for in yesterday’s recap which sent me on a full-blown Infinite video watching spiral (Kim Myung Soo is a member of Infinite when he’s not busy lighting up televisions with his perfect cherub visuals) and then Chooch got super cat-psycho (he gets so annoyingly affectionate with our cat Drew) so we screamed at him to go to bed and you know now that I think about it, aside from Chooch and I being home together during the day for the time being, things are honestly not much different than they were pre-quarantine: it’s still fucking pandemonium here.

FRIDAY

It is 3:07pm and I have almost nothing to report. Today is the blandest of all the other bland days. I spent a lot of time on calls for the first half of the day and that was greatly annoying to Chooch but,  you know, welcome to the world of shared work spaces, pal.

I finished “Lock Every Door” by Riley Sager. It gave me strong “Nightmare on the 13th Floor” vibes, where all of my Made for TV movie fans at!? Holla at me if you remember that one.

Nightmare on the 13th Floor | VHSCollector.com

Meanwhile, Chef Chooch-R-Dee accidentally paid $2 for some vegan recipe app which angered Henry but I was like, “Oh well, start cookin’, buddy.”

During my lunch break, we braved the streets of Brookline so I could mail something. I took tissues with us so that I wouldn’t have to touch the handle of the mail box outside of the post office. It seemed like the few people who were out were practicing safe social distancing measures, except that we saw our nemesis CVS cashier—“1212”—-standing outside of the store talking to someone and there only seemed to be TWO FEET of space between them so that’s cool.

One of the groups I’m a part of had a check-up call today and it was really awkward because we had to take turns talking alphabetically while everyone else stayed muted, so it just felt like I was bombing at open mic night, big time. I’d say something and pause, and of course no one was responding because they were muted, and I was like gulping for air on my end. It was so uncomfortable. In my other group, it’s just like a free-for-all on these calls, lol.

Chooch’s Instagram memories reminded him that on this day two years ago, we were at Everland, an amusement park in South Korea. THANKS, INSTAGRAM. I’m going to wear my Everland headband in honor of that memory.

Henry is home now. Chooch is showing him a recipe from his new $2 app that he wants to make and it requires a “nine-spice mix” and Henry was like “the fuck is that” and it turns out it’s another recipe, so basically a recipe within a recipe, and now Henry is like, “THIS IS TURNING INTO A 5-20-FORTY DOLLAR RECIPE!”

“We have warm water,” Chooch said, reading off the ingredients five minutes later. Literally one of the only ingredients we have, lol. Henry wants to kill him.

Oh! Henry brought home fudge brownie M&Ms which now holds the title for highlight of the day. CAN ANYTHING TAKE THE CROWN? Only time will tell.

Friday afternoon lunacy selfie! One day, Chooch and I will have so many stories to tell about this time while we’re roasting chestnuts over an open fire, preferably in whatever haunted mansion he’s bought me from his math genius career earnings. I’m tired of sitting at this desk, but thankful that that’s pretty much my only complaint right now.

Chooch is revisiting his Shane Dawson obsession so I have heard his big dumb mouth in the background pretty much all week and I am definitely not a fan.

Holy fucking shit, in the last hour, Slut Life has come and gone at least 5x!! Like, he leaves and then returns within 10 minutes – maybe he should just walk!? And it’s so annoying because his bass is SO LOUD in his car and it takes him forever to maneuver the car into the narrow-ass city garage that we have in these houses. I just texted HNC about it. I AM “THAT NEIGHBOR” who watches the neighborhood from the dining room window and I literally do not care. This shit runs in my family. Gimme my binoculars.

(We actually did find binoculars at the living room window when we had to clean out my Pappap’s house. My Aunt Sharon was serious about Neighborhood Watch.)

Logged off work and Chooch and I went across the street for some churchyard Fündopop fun times!

Also!! HNC texted me back and said that he and Slut Life got into it the other day and Slut Life peeled out of the driveway (I witnessed that!!) and he apparently kicked up a chunk of asphalt in the process! HNC is writing a letter to the landlord since calling him didn’t work. He said he mentioned me in the letter. I’m so excited! I get a mention!! No one ever mentions me anymore!!

On that note, I think I will put this weekday roundup to bed. If anything amazing (doubtful) happens between now and the time I go to bed, you best believe I’ll be updating this. But life in isolation is pretty boring, and you know what? THAT’S JUST FINE. I feel, I dunno, blessed to be bored right now, like I should have an embroidery of that hanging in my kitchen or something.

Mar 202020
 

MONDAY

Made Chooch exercise first thing in the morning. This isn’t vacation! I picked a workout that was annoyingly strenuous though and I don’t like hard workouts in the AM, so I guess the joke’s actually on me.

Chooch started watching some stupid show on Netflix called On the Block. I hate it.

The school is handing out Grab-n-Go lunches for the students. Chooch was like, “Thank god” and went to get one but I was like WHAT ABOUT MEEEEE?! Much to his chagrin, they were also passing out assignment packets, so now he has legit work to do, which made my PROFESSOR MOMMY’S ASSIGNMENT LIST backfire. :( He still wrote about bibimbap though because he could see how sad I was that my Thinking Chores don’t matter now.

At one point, I realized I hadn’t seen him in a while so I started screaming his name. He called back from his bedroom so I was like, “OH NO, YOU ARE NOT GOING TO SPEND ALL AFTERNOON LAYING IN BED WATCHING TV” but when I went up there, I found him sitting in a chair with a book. “You told me to read a book so I’m reading a book. ‘Mandatory reading time,’ remember?”

Oh yeah, I did say that.

So far, isolation was *shrug* because I work from home at least one day a week anyway, but WE’LL SEE HOW LONG THE NOVELTY LASTS. Adding a smart-mouthed teenager to the package really adds a new layer, though. But at least he doesn’t expect me to do things for him. I mean, he’s known me for 13 years now and is quite aware of what I am and am not capable of.

TUESDAY

I forced Chooch  to start the day with 20 minutes of K-pop cardio! He actually kind of put forth a bit of effort.

Chooch wishes he knew how to hard-boil eggs. “Same,” I say. Later, Henry comes home from work and points out that we already had hardboiled eggs in the fridge. We did not know.

Henry came home from work and we mauled him. WE’RE HUNGRY! FEED US! we cried.

Jesus, it’s only day 2, he sighed.

On my break, we walked to the library so I could dump some books off into the return thing BUT IT WAS LOCKED – originally, they were still going to accept book returns during  the isolation period, but I guess they changed their mind and there was a sign that says to just hold on to your materials until they reopen, ughhh I was hoping that at least one tiny part of my beloved library process would still be intact.

Don’t worry, we maintained social distance on our walk to the library, touched nothing, talked to no one, entered no store. Came home and scrubbed our hand-flesh off.

  • That’s too loud.
  • What are you watching, that’s dumb.
  • Shut up, I’m on a call.
  • Turn that down.
  • Shut up, I’m in a meeting.
  • Go watch a documentary.
  • Shut up, I’m in a training.
  • Mandatory reading time!

— Chooch’s compendium of things I yelled today, apparently, recited back to me in A TONE THAT WAS NOT A FAIR REPRESENTATION OF HOW I TALK, THANKS.

Saw an Instagram ad over the weekend for fire blankets and panicked that we might need those so I made Henry buy two. Instagram ads is the QVC for the next generation. Today they arrived. I didn’t even open the box because the excitement had already worn off.

WEDNESDAY

Chooch is letting me use his fancy gaming headphones for when I have to call into meetings, except that I found out the hard way that the mic doesn’t work. I emailed the Help Desk and they responded with instructions that were more than 2 steps so I replied, “That is too complicated. I will just continue to call in using my cell phone.”

Some group emails are going around because people apparently miss each other. I mean, I guess I miss some people but I’m perfectly fine in my covid-less cocoon at home, thanks.

Chooch chose the Zac Efron Ted Bundy movie as his choice of documentary when I urged him to watch something educational. I mean, that probably counts, right?

Then the Census came in the mail!

So far the most exciting part of isolation was cracking up with Chooch while trying to find what best describes Henry’s relation to me. We are deep in the throes of cabin fever slap-happiness. Check back tomorrow when we’ve surely resorted to acute psychological torture for fun. We ended up selecting “opposite-sex unmarried partner” in the end because I was afraid of going to jail, also one time before I started working at The Law Firm, I tried to get a job with the census and I had to take a test in the basement of the library but I guess I failed because they never called me back. I mean, it DID have word problems on it.

Why, tho.

THURSDAY

Chooch, at 8;50am: Don’t you have to start working soon?

Me, from the couch: Yes.

Chooch: Are you already logged on?

Me: Yes.

Chooch, in a parental tone: Oh OK, I was just making sure you’re ready.

NO HE WASN’T. HE WAS JUST HOPING HE COULD USE THE COMPUTER.

Chooch and I had a play-fight with an empty water bottle, still made less noise than Blake’s crying kids next door.  Our cat Penelope has basically stopped coming downstairs now because we’re here all the time and she hates it.

Had to call in to a short meeting using my cell phone on speaker. “Holy shit that was boring,” Chooch said from the living room when I disconnected. YES, I KNOW. THIS IS MY LIFE.

Around 5:00, Henry left to go and pick up our dinner from Onion Maiden because we wanted to try and be supportive I guess, saints that we are. I was still working so I was sitting at the computer for a good 5 minutes talking to Chooch only to find out from his silence that he went with Henry.

While they were gone, a cop car went flying past the house with the sirens on and then a police helicopter circled overhead for approx. 10 minutes. That combined with the coronavirus really gave me that nice “end of the world” sensation.

 

War Pig with cashew cheese and jalapeños, and Crucifier Rising dumplings. Chooch got the Kimmy Gimmler (comes with kimchi yessss) and the Bunn O))).

I love Onion Maiden but I don’t eat there very often for some reason that probably involves the fact that I don’t eat out at all very often because I’m pretty sure I have some type of eating disorder.

Henry wasn’t allowed to sit on the floor with us because he had meat. He was like WHATEVER I CANT SIT ON THE FLOOR ANYWAY and then that made me think of my birthday lunch at a traditional Buddhist restaurant in Seoul where Henry almost couldn’t get up after sitting on the floor and now I am so fucking sad. I miss you, Korea. Hopefully this pandemic ends someday and I can go back.

Chooch and I also shared a piece of Terrormisu. What a nice little quarantine picnic!

7:46pm: Chooch just chased me around the house, throwing an old spare key at me and I ran to Henry for help but he’s half-asleep in bed and mumbled for us to separate. Then Chooch laughed too hard and almost threw up on Henry.

It’s a…real haven up in here.

FRIDAY

“Chooch, we’re going to make bread today.”

“……without HIM?” (HIM = Henry, clearly.)

“Yes! Someone posted recipes on Twitter. It looks easy.”

“Well, THAT’S something I can tell I’ll be quoting you on for the rest of my life.”

OK, scratch that idea. I just went back to the recipe I saw on Twitter and realized that there was way more to it than just this:

Apparently, the rest of the recipe was in the comments. It’s involved. Do we have baking powder? What is kosher salt? Something about sitting in a greased bowl for 30-60 minutes? I’ll pass.

In good, non-COVID news, Taemin has black hair again! Also, I really wish I was going through this pandemic hell in S. Korea, not the fucking dumb US. God, can we screw this up anymore? FORGET I ASKED THAT. DO NOT HOLD ANYONE’S BEER. GET BACK INTO ISOLATION.

UPDATE, 12:09:

Chooch is making the bread on his own. Where the fuck is the baking powder, he asked, gesturing to the open cupboard full of UNLABELED CONTAINERS OF WHITE POWERS.

‘This could all be cocaine for all we know!” I cried. Now Henry is on speaker phone. He is very unhappy about how this Friday is progressing.

Apparently the baking powder is in a plastic container that says “baking powder.” I would have hung up on Henry’s ass by now.

OMG IF I HEAR “BAKING POWDER’ ONE MORE TIME. This call has dragged on for like 11 minutes. Henry just yelled, “I have to go! I don’t have time for this!”

Lol, I found the baking powder immediately  and now Chooch is mad. He dropped the butter on the ground so I told him  to just wash it off but then we both looked at it and I said, “Um, just throw it out.” Then we fucked up because I dumped all the water in at once, before Chooch had a chance to “mix the dry ingredients” and then apparently even the the water was supposed to be added gradually? Why? It’s all going to end up in the same place eventually anyway?

I feel like we made some progress because after stirring it for a but, it resembles real life dough! I got bored though so now Chooch is doing the rest alone.

12:44PM This might go down as the worst idea ever. The dough is like melted paste – is this right!?

The recipe never told us what to do with the butter. We used our collective noggins to assume that it was for greasing the bowl, so then Chooch made me wash out the Pam that I had originally (handsomely) spritzed it with. We are now letting the dough sit for 30-60 minutes. Is it going to expand into a carb-loaded Jabba the Hut and suffocate us? TIME WILL TELL.

1:50PM: Time to cook this gooey blob! I just noticed that the recipe on Twitter said to HEAT A GRIDDLE. THE FUCK? I was like “Can’t we just use the oven?” and Chooch was like I don’t know so I was scrolling through the Twitter comments and I said, “Oh look! This person asked, ‘Can I use an oven'” and Chooch goes, “Yeah that was me. That was LITERALLY ME.”

I have a headache.

Good thing we have those fire blankets.

YOU GUYS I’m positive we didn’t make these as intended but, against all odds, they taste fucking delicious. The first one came out the most normal looking. The rest are like, dough scraps but still delicious.

We made a penis-shaped one for Henry!

A half hour later, I glanced in the kitchen. “I guess we should just leave this for him to clean up?” And then Chooch and I scream-laughed our faces off. I think we’ve reached peak isolation. It has to be all downhill from here.

Oh wait, but then Henry told me that he ripped his pants today and didn’t realize it until he went back to the office and one of his coworkers said, “Nice underwear.” Yes, this is my favorite part of today’s isolation.

In case you were wondering if beverage deliverymen are essential during a pandemic, that would be a yes. Henry still has to work and his skin is basically burning off his hands from manic-application of hand sanitizer.

5:00PM: Henry just came home and is so mad. “I’m not cleaning that!” he yelled, but now he’s in there cleaning it. Chooch let the “dough” dry on the rolling pin and Henry is very upset about this. Also, he tried the bread and threw it back on the plate. Chooch and I were so insulted, but then I took a bite, and you know, now that they’ve been laying there for a few hours, I can tell that um, these actually aren’t fully cooked, lol. It’s pretty raw, is that why my stomach hurts do you think?

Chooch reminded me that there wasn’t egg in it at least.

I doubt anything exciting will happen for the rest of the evening. My plans are:

  • cereal for dinner
  • exercise
  • read
  • watch “Kingdom”

If anything noteworthy goes down, I will update this!

Feb 222020
 

…I got distracted and didn’t finish writing it, so now it’s Saturday and you can have four things instead of five because what good are rules if you don’t ever break them? Fuck off, Friday Fives! We’re here for Saturday…Fours now.

    1. It Always Comes Back to Days Of Our Lives

Yo, I was watching SuperM on some YouTube video from when they were doing their US promotions and they were each asked to name a song that’s the playlist of their lives, or whatever, and I had to do a doubletake when Baekhyun chose PEABO BRYSON?!!?

How fucking random. I feel like a ton of Americans wouldn’t even know Peabo Bryson, but I know him because he sang STEVE AND KAYLA’S SONG FROM DAYS OF OUR LIVES:

Also, when it was Taemin’s turn, he picked one of his own songs, haha, I love him so much.

[ETA: Ok when I first was writing this I could have sworn that it was Hope & Bo’s song but LE DUH that was a DIFFERENT Peabo jam, “Tonight I Celebrate My Love” god I’m so dumb.]

2. Math Mystery Night

For the last several years, Chooch has been attending the Gifted Center once a week during school. Every year, they have this thing called Math Mystery Night and he always either forgets to tell us, or tells us 10 minutes after it started, or actually gives us the flyer in advance which gives us plenty of time to make excuses for not being able to go. Ew, math on a weeknight? No thanks.

But this time, I saw the flyer in his backpack and as soon as I noticed that it was on a Thursday night, I stuck it up on the fridge and told Henry to go.

“I don’t want to,” he whined.

“Well, I can’t go because that’s my late shift. So, you can go. It’s his last year there!”

Thank god for late shift, haha.

So, that’s what Henry ended up doing Thursday night while I stayed at home and worked. He said Chooch was the only 8th grader that showed up and all the other kids were like, elementary-age. But, Chooch was happy to solve dumb math problems and collect prizes, and apparently Henry even managed to solve one.

It was probably some basic word problem like, “Susie has 8 soft pretzels. She eats 7 of them while watching an episode of NCIS while sitting in her car in the Shop n’ Save parking lot. How much salt is on the car seat now?”

Anyway, later in the evening, Henry said they were in one of the classrooms when some bitch-mom was whining to the teacher about how her son didn’t get into SciTech and Chooch piped up, “I got into SciTech.”

WOW, SON. Maybe we should enroll in SciTACT, you know what I’m saying?

(When I told Todd and Glenn this at work the next day, Todd said he didn’t know what I meant, so I explained it and he was like, “Sike, I knew what you meant, I just wanted you to have to explain the joke.” COOL.)

Henry said that he actually wasn’t mad at Chooch for his ruthless outburst because the mom in question was a bitch.

“She reminded me of [name redacted for my own protection]’s mom, only—”

“—alive?” I offered, because that mom kicked it last year.

“Wow. No. I was going to say ‘mouthier,’ but OK,” Henry said, shaking his head at me.

3. Beetle Ring Story Time

Sometimes when I’m rummaging through my jewelry boxes, I stumbled upon shit I forgot I had, like this here (wow I typed “hear” at first please send me back to 2nd grade) steampunk-esque ring that my ex-bff bought for me years ago on Etsy because I said I wanted it and back then, all I had to do was say that I wanted something and it was mine because she was like, some pimp salesperson at a window company at the time and always bragged about how much money she made so I was like, “OK cool then buy me shit” and she would because I’m the best, have you not figured that out yet?

Anyway, the very same day, the ring arrived in my mailbox and I was like HOW THO. Turns out, the maker actually lives in my neighborhood so when she saw my address, she packaged it right up and just walked it over to my house. We struck up a casual friendship through Etsy because of this and ended up meeting – she had moved her from San Francisco after spending years being the number fan of this local college-rock legend Weird Paul and then he was like “Be my girlfriend” I guess and so that’s what she did. I went to their house one time for tea and snacks, and she pretended to use a banana as a telephone and then we watched some documentary about a photographer I think, and then another time she and Weird Paul came to my house for game night and brought a bag of pretzels (“If Weird Paul brings a bag of pretzels to Erin’s game night and Henry eats the whole bag, how high is Henry’s blood pressure?”) and a vintage board game called Uncle Wiggily.

I have to laugh because Weird Paul’s Pittsburgh popularity has had a bit of resurgence lately and smugly think to myself, “He came to one of my game nights, so…”

MAYBE I SHOULD HAVE ANOTHER GAME NIGHT SOON?! The last couple were kind of…eh.

4. A Psycho Surprise

I have this little gold picture frame on my desk at work that contains a vintage photo of a dead man in a coffin  that I used years ago for one of my Halloween displays but then ended up keeping it as perma-desk decor because, hey, that’s just who I am, a person who enjoys looking at real life photos of finely-dressed corpses throughout the work day. Sometimes, when I’m struggling through a particularly sticky conversation with a lawyer, I stare at that picture and remember that someday, I won’t have to talk to people on the phone anymore because I too will be a corpse.

I SHOULD MAKE MOTIVATIONAL POSTERS, I KNOW, YOU’RE RIGHT, THAT’S A GREAT FUCKING IDEA. TIME TO OPEN UP A CAFE PRESS STORE.

Well, one day recently, I noticed that the picture was all askew, and I would accuse the cleaning people of bumping it but we all know that they never dust our fucking desks so who knows who the culprit was; in any case, I opened the back of it so I could adjust the picture, and this photo came fluttering out:

THAT’S A FUCKING PICTURE OF MY EX-BOYFRIEND PSYCHO MIKE FROM WHEN HE WAS A CHILD! I can’t remember why he gave this to me when we were dating, BUT HE DID, and then eventually I covered it with a picture of my boss from Olan Mills and I guess the dead guy has been in there for 6 years now, which evidently is long enough to make me forget that Child (but still psycho, no doubt) Mike was in there, lying in wait.

It was real jolting and I had to stifle a scream, since this happened in the middle of the work day and you’ve probably never been to my office but it is usually so quiet there that you would think you were in a morgue, so my Dead Guy probably feels quite at home. Then I started laughing because the fact that I was more scared of a picture of my psycho ex-boyfriend than one of a dead guy in a coffin is extremely telling of our sordid relationship.

***

Well, hell. That was fun. Let’s do it again sometime.

Jan 182020
 

This was intended to be a Friday Five but then I went all in after work yesterday on putting the finishing touches on my cult & spiritual leaders Valentine minis which have been plaguing my brain since I first decided last year that I wanted to make them. Hopefully people like them, so look forward to that – should be posted on Etsy later today!

So anyway, here are five things that I have been putting off memorializing on this piece because I’ve had bloglock over the last few months – I think I still enjoy writing in here but I can’t be sure, and then there’s the lack of motivation because all of my energy is funneled elsewhere, so maybe the blog-era of my life is finally winding down? Here is where I perform a big, lazy shrug for no one to see.

  1. My Neglected Son–Wait, I Have a Son?

Several months ago, Chooch and I were on one of our nightly walks — you know, the ones where he oscillates between talking about school drama and new math (he had a math test the other day and practically swan-leapt out of the house, fucking weirdo) — when he so very casually mentioned that he had been interviewed by “some broad” at the teen center.

“For what? What about? Who was she? Where is this being published?” I asked in the spit-fire nature of an interrogating mom.

He shrugged. All I could glean from him was that it was something about the head of the teen center, Caitlin. And they wanted quotes from him because he’s “basically the face of the teen center.” Um, his words.

Well, on the first of January, I received an e-newsletter from the teen center – apparently he signed me up for this so now I can have evidence that I’m marginally involved in his teen center activities.

In the newsletter was this graphic:

CHECK OUT THAT QUOTE FROM RILEY, 13-YEAR-OLD 8TH GRADER…Yes, that is my son, putting his parents on blast for allegedly neglecting him and never being home. WOW JUST WOW OK SON. We get home at 6pm everyday, like most working parents, yet he stays at the teen center until 9pm anyway because he’s obsessed with being there! He even eats dinner there even though Henry makes dinner at home!? I called him out on this and he shrugged. “They took it out context,” he explained. “I also said that you guys aren’t home after school because you’re busy working hard.” YEAH, THAT SURELY SOUNDS LIKE SOMETHING HE WOULD SAY.

So, that’s cool. One Saturday, Henry and I walked past the teen center while Chooch was in there and I said, “Should we go in there and officially announce ourselves as his parents so they know we exist?”

Henry considered this, then said, “Nah” so we continued eating our cookies from the bakery while walking home, and YES WE GOT COOKIES FOR CHOOCH TOO even though he is the one who abandons US but that’s fine. I’m not bitter.

Fucking teen center kidnapped my son.

2. Guy on Road

I was walking to the ATM the other night when I saw some commotion at this one intersection a block down from my house. Some guy was standing in the road directing traffic, and as I got closer, I noticed that another man was lying prostrate on the road with a small crowd of people around him, wailing, “I am in so much pain” and I’m not sure exactly what happened but I’m going to go out on a limb and assume that he was trying to cross (AT THE CROSSWALK) and some OMG-IN-A-HURRY car came barreling up the hill and hit him. I HATE crossing the street here and I have to do it every morning on the walk to work (actually, I could walk on the other side of the street but then I would have to cross extra times and I am bad at crossing streets except that I just admitted to Henry that I have become better at jaywalking since working downtown because Pittsburgh is like the unofficial capital of jaywalking, not sure if we should be proud of that). Anyway, I can’t tell you how many people barely – BARELY – stop at the stop signs at this 3-way intersection and I have nearly been clipped numerous times after already establishing my right-of-way by making it to the middle of the walk. I usually have to do this really clumsy deer-run to the other side every morning because nothing makes me more nervous on my walks to the trolley than morning commuters because you know, they’re in a big hurry to turn the bend and sit in traffic at a red light.

Actually, there is something that makes me more nervous and that is having a brick fall on my head which recently happened – not the “falling on my head” part but bricks did in fact fall from the top of a building that I habitually pass by but luckily it happened late at night when no one was standing there. It was roped off by police tape for a few days and when I found out why, I did a cartoon *GULP*.

Anyway, back to the man. On my way back from the ATM, the whole rescue brigade was there by then and the street was lit up by emergency lights which is nothing new for Pioneer Avenue. I still don’t know exactly what happened, but I sure hope that guy didn’t die.

Unless he was a bad man. Then die, motherfucker. Get what you deserve.

Random Drew.

3. Geomi-Nim

I know I mentioned at one point that I had obtained a pet kitchen spider and named him “Geomi-Nim” which means “Mister Spider” in Korean but I don’t have a Korean keyboard on my work computer so I can’t type it properly. Well, he had a good long run (at least two months, I think?!) in four different locations in the kitchen, but I guess he ultimately either tired of me screaming Korean vocab at him and packed his shit and left, or he died. Because he’s been gone for a month now and hasn’t resurfaced, which makes me sad but Henry is just happy that he can use his container of sesame seeds again without being a literal homewrecker.

Anyway, here’s a picture I took Geomi-Nim in his third property. I miss him and his beautiful webs.

Also, I have no idea what gender he was because I refused to Google; look, having one mild-looking spider in my house is one thing, but I do not want my computer screen filled with threatening photos of spider species. Henry said that he thought spiders were genderless but I was like, “OK, explain then Charlotte, then” and he was like, “………that was a cartoon.”

4. ANGRY MEETING

Earlier in the week, we had a meeting to go over a new thing that is happening. During this, someone said, “But what about *boring work thing*?” and the person in charge of the meeting was like, “What are you talking about” and then I said, “Here is my idea for a work-around to *boring work thing*” and person in charge was like, “No that is dumb that won’t work” IN SO MANY WORDS so I was like, “OK” and went back to shutting down because this is my work life lately. Shrinking into the corners and hoping no one will look at me, lol.

About 10 minutes later, GLENN said, “Can’t we do *INSERT EXACTLY WHAT I HAD PROPOSED*” and person in charge was all, “Huh! Let’s test that out!” and I was sitting there with my mouth hanging open, thinking IS NO ONE REALLY GOING TO SAY ANYTHING so I did what I do best which is drop down to elementary school age, flap my arms in the arm, and whine, “THAT IS EXACTLY THE SAME THING I SAID THOUGH?!!?” and person in charge was like, “No, it wasn’t?” and I was searching the room with desperate eyes, willing someone to stand up for all that is right and take my side WHICH IS ALWAYS THE GOOD SIDE but no one did so instead of dropping it, I pressed on and said, “No, that’s the same thing I suggested and you said it wouldn’t work” and Lauren was like, “Maybe you said it a different way, I think” AND NO I DID NOT. Meanwhile, Glenn was over there wading in Smug Lagoon with a handful of old people butterscotch candies, looking so pleased with himself and I was like, “I WILL NEVER LET THIS GO” and true to my word, I spent the rest of the day fueled by that fire and made sure to tell everyone who would listen.

“I’M NOT SAYING I’M GOING TO LIGHT A FIRE OR ANYTHING, LORI, BUT MAYBE DON’T GO OVER NEAR GLENN’S DESK LATER,” I fumed, and Lori was all, “OMG you’re mad.” But Nate and Cathy consoled me afterward and both confirmed that I did, in fact, suggest the same thing, and Cathy, who always wants to give people the benefit of the doubt, said that maybe person in charge just understand fully at that time what the issue at hand truly was (she definitely didn’t, so I will agree with Cathy there). I usually don’t show my temper at work but this really set me off, primarily because it brought back some really bad, negative feelings from a former position I once held there and I didn’t like it. Bad memories. Stay in the past.

I mean, in what world does GLENN have a good idea, anyway!??!

I’m OK now though. I was invited to be a part of a brainstorming session for something else and the other people involved in this will not be so dismissive of my suggestions, so I am looking forward to that.

5. The Ring

Sometime back in 2003, Henry and I went to Salem, MA for a little vacation. This was still early into our relationship – we had been together for about 2 years at this point, I guess, and sometimes I look back on those times and think, “How did we make it to 2020?” Oh, I jest! Only a little. Anyway, while there, I bought this ring at one of the little witchy shops and I loved it, but then almost immediately after purchasing it, I accidentally wore it into the shower once and the soap/shampoo left the once-clear stone completely cloudy, so that you could no longer see the witchy design it was meant to magnify.

I complained about it a ton back then, off and on for at least 5 years I would bring it up, because I would still wear it sometimes in spite of the soap scum, which was in the underneath of the cabochon so I couldn’t reach it. I tried using a q-tip to scrub it but it was too big, I tried soaking it in jewelry cleaner, I tried witchy spells to cosmically cleanse it, but nothing worked! Henry. when asked for help, would  smoosh his mustache up while inspecting it and then shrug.

The other day, I wore it because like I said, I paid money for the thing so I’m still going to allow it to decorate my finger, you know? For some reason, I felt inspired to once again bring up my plight to Henry.

“Hmm, let me see that,” he said, taking the ring off of me. And then he got out one of his tool-things, popped the cabochon out from the prongs, polished its underside, and then put it back.

JUST LIKE THAT.

HE COULD NOT HAVE DONE THIS 17 YEARS AGO?!!?!?

“I literally did not know that this was even a thing,” he said defensively, confused as to why I was yelling at him instead of thanking him.

So this leads me to believe that Henry just blocked me out for much of the early years, so should I be happy that he listens to me now, or pissed that he didn’t listen to me then? THAT IS THE QUESTION.

Actually, I think he just hadn’t learned to fear me yet in the beginning. He’s learned a lot over the years about my INNER WITCH.

And I think that’s all I got for this belated Friday Five. Today I will be focusing on Valentines, Korean-learning, and reading. I got two books from the library on Thursday! ALL BY MYSELF!

 

Dec 202019
 

Guys, sometimes I don’t feel exactly inspired to workout. Maybe I’m tired from a mentally taxing day at work or maybe my body is just like “Yo please give us a break, lady” because I’ve overdone it with HIIT workouts that week. But I still want to do something!

Usually I’ll start searching for niche themed-workouts that tend to be ridiculous so I’m getting a great core workout just from laughing! Lately, even though I don’t particularly like Xmas music, I’ve been doing random holiday-themed workouts on YouTube and not only is it helping me keep my weight in check during this Christmas cookie flurry, it’s also kind of making me get in the mood for Christmas!

This will always be a special time for me when it comes to exercise, because it was 4 years ago that I found KpopX on Christmas Eve and, well, two trips to Korea and several smaller dress sizes later, I guess you could say it pretty much changed my life!

I’m going to be including full-length workouts as well as quick one-song aerobics routines because these ones are good when you’ve been working from home and need to just get up and stretch for 5 minutes! Evert little bit of movement you can wedge into your day really makes a difference, you guys. ‘Tis I, Erin Rachelle Kelly, the Ambassador of Ambulation. Oh, you just wait until I have my sash made.

*****

  1. PAUL EUGENE’S CRUNK CHRISTMAS FROM A CHAIR!

Maybe you’re just getting back into a workout routine after an injury or have a bad back (like Henry), then might I suggest this titillating chair workout from your boy, my boy, our boy: PAUL EUGENE?!

This one is also good if you don’t like Christmas music, but want to look at someone doing chair jacks in front of a Christmas themed green screen?

2. Vietnamese Christmas Dance Party!

I’m doing this one as soon as I finish this blog post! Whenever it says “all level” I’m like, “OK I might not get hurt.”

3. Give Me Five Thailand: Red & Green Edition

I LOVE THIS GUY SO MUCH. He primarily does cardio dance routines to kpop jams, but when this one came out a few days ago, I was like, “Well, I guess I like Mariah Carey now. Let’s get it.”

4. Christmas Walkin’!

So, everything about this channel seems like something that I should be completely adverse to. But for some reason, I REALLY LIKE THIS LADY. Enough that I’ll even tolerate Christmas tunes for her. And maybe I even smile a little. I dunno, I just think she seems like a nice lady, OK?! And sometimes I need a break from walking in place to murder shows or suffering through Leslie Sansone’s Janice-from-Friends- esque bray.

5. Blessercise

Because Jesus is the Reason for the Season!

I sent this to my team at work and they were like, “WHAT. WHY. HOW DO YOU FIND THESE THINGS.” But I think at least two of them went home and tried it.

*****

Well, I hope you tried at least one of these. Let me know if you did, and also, feel free to share your favorite YouTube workouts! I’m always looking for new shit. MERRY CARDIOMAS!

Dec 062019
 

…but five is “ise.”

My Cat Brian

I recently watched the second season of Mindhunter. Don’t even get me started on how much I disliked the first season! It took me forever to slag through because it was so boring and I FUCKING HATED “DEB” and kept waiting for her to go away because Henry, who watched the whole season without me, kept saying, ‘Oh don’t worry, she doesn’t last long” so then I thought MAYBE SHE WILL BE MURDERED and there was one scene in particular when she was in a bathtub and I was like YES, THIS IS IT! DROWN YOU DUMB BITCH! But then nothing happened and she ended up being in the whole season, so I’m not sure what show Henry was watching…

ANYWAY. The second season was better. But this here isn’t a TV show review, OK? I’m only mentioning this show because there was one scene with one of the character’s son—he’s like 7 and a budding serial killer, and his mom finds him standing on the periphery of a playground, glaring at some bitch on a swingset. The mom is all, “BRIAN, WE DON’T STARE” and later that night, I happened to look over at my cat Drew, who was sitting on the floor, GLARING at her sister Penelope in a very Brian-esque manner, so the next logical step was to start calling her Brian and everyone in my house hates this but I crack myself THE FUCK UP every time I scream, “BRIAN WE DON’T STARE!!!” at Drew.

Sometimes I call Penelope “Paige,” the girl on the swing, and this angers Chooch and Henry too because literally that girl was only in the scene for 3 seconds and we only know her name because her mom says, “Let’s go, Paige” but these are the things I latch on to.

I tried telling some of my co-workers about this because I couldn’t stop laughing to myself about it at work, but they were just like, “…………………….” similar to when I changed Drew’s name to Ursula’s Shoulder Pads.

Update on Henry’s Back

People keep asking me how Henry’s back is and I’m like, “Uh….*shrug*” But I can tell you that Manly Henry the Man-Man is wearing a Donald Duck bandaid on the delicate boo-boo that he recently received on his precious pinky finger.

It was pretty fucked up around here last Friday though when The Back Injury first happened because Chooch and I were like WHAT WILL WE DO FOR FOOD? I was getting ready to grab a basket and my hooded cloak before hitting the forest for some berry-picking, but then Chooch suggested Subway and I was like, “Yes, that sounds manageable” so we were going to go and do that but then Henry was like, “Well, I would like to eat dinner too….?” but he was afraid we’d fuck up his order so he made us order through the app so that he could be in control and prevent us from sabotaging his carefully crafted sandwich.

“What do I do when I get to Subway? Just say ‘give me’?” I asked Henry, wringing my hands. I don’t do things for myself very often.

But then something went wrong with the app-ordering, like a real life deus ex machina. “I’ll just go there. CHRIST,” Henry sighed,  rolling himself out of bed and slowly putting his pants on because whatever happened now required him to physically enter a Subway LOL oh the trials and tribs.

“I think I can handle lifting a bag of sandwiches,” he said in a tone t hat suggested he just had the wind knocked out of him.

I laughed so much.

But then he came back and my sandwich was fucked up so I guess: who’s laughing now, amirite.

Erin vs the United States

I was looking at a map of the US on my phone the other day, after being inspired by venturing out to Missouri for the first time, and I was surprised to see where it was located in relation to other states like Louisiana, Mississippi, whatever.

“Wow, maybe I should start looking at maps more often,” I murmured. “I didn’t realize we had come this far away from Pittsburgh.”

And Henry just glowered at me from beneath his angry caterpillar brows.

Also, today I realized that I was using the wrong abbreviation for Missouri since the weekend, which is fantastic since it was a part of one of my blog post titles. I kept using MO for some reason!? I think I need to go back to school, maybe audit a few 5th grade classes or something.

OK, maybe 3rd grade. You got me.

EDIT: Ok 2 weeks later and I just learned THAT I WAS RIGHT THE FIRST TIME, IT IS “MO.” My brain is a bean.

DEB STRIKES AGAIN

I had to pause what I was watching because Chooch brought his traveling talk show into the room, and he interrupted himself to shout, “organic big-bush patchouli sex? Wow, what the hell are YOU watching, mom.”

I’ll tell you what I’m watching: a not-great TV show, son, that plays out like a Lifetime movie but with swears and sex because…Netflix. Anyway,  this show was recommended to me by a co-worker and the first season was aight because Jessica Biel was in it, not that I’m like a huge J-Biel fangirl, I only know her from 7th Heaven lol. But the story line season 1 was more compelling to me than season 2, and I have stalled out on the 5th episode.

COINCIDENTALLY, in this season, there is some bitch who looked familiar and instantly got under my skin. Henry was like, “hey is that—-” and I cried in pain, “DEB!!”

Yes, the same bitch who played the worst character on Mindhunter is back to ruin my television-watching experience yet again.

What a stupid bitch. She’s really annoying in this show too.

Also, can we talk about how I had the hugest crush on Bill Pullman in the 90s and while all of my friends were going to the movies numerous times to see “Casper” because of Devon Sawa, I was going for HOT DAD BILL PULLMAN.

But…has he always been this bad of an actor and I just was  too blind to notice or care? Because holy shit, it’s like he watched the episode of Friends where Joey divulges his “smell in the fart” acting technique and fucking ran with it.

It ain’t good, Bill.

Meanwhile, the Korean dramas I’m currently watching are like French-chef-kissing-his-fingers good. But ya’ll don’t care about that.

(Or is it Italian chefs who kiss their fingers?!)

The Face of the Teen Center

Chooch told us off-handedly last week that he was interviewed at the teen center.

“For what?” I asked.

He shrugged. “I don’t know. Some lady was writing about it for something I guess.”

“Well, what did she ask you?”

“I dunno. Why I liked the teen center,” Chooch mumbled, and I could tell that I wasn’t going to get much more out of him than that because that kid is so oblivious at times. But then he said that he was the only one they interviewed because, “I’m basically the face of the teen center.”

OMG his ego. Where does he get it from.

Then the other day, we saw that the Teen Center used his picture again on Instagram (oh don’t worry, we signed a media release awhile ago).

WHY IS HE LIKE THIS. .Also that’s an old picture of him, but don’t worry – his current hair looks just as dumb as his Spring 2019 hair.

In other teen center news, two volunteers recently left (they’re all college kids so they eventually leave…right after the kids get attached to them).

“Wow,” I fake-cared for Chooch’s sake. “Are they having a volunteer-shortage now? Do you think I should volunteer?”

“OMG no! You HATE kids!” Chooch cried, as if I was actually serious. My time is valuable! I’m not wasting it in a basement full of screaming kids.

“Yeah, especially teens,” I pointed out.

So, that was short-lived.

Well, on that note, here’s a photo of Paige & Brian. And now I’m going to go and watch some more of Korean dramas while Henry is busy cobbling together serial killer Christmas cards. Thanks, Mindhunter, for making Ed Kemper and Richard Speck le chic even though I’ve had them in my card catalog (lol) for years. You’re still not that great of show, though.

Oct 252019
 

Well, this was supposed to be last Friday’s “Friday Five” thingie but I’m a scattered mess inside that head of mine. So let’s try this again for today, I guess. Also, I’m pretty sure I’ve used a similar Friday 5 title in the past. Oh well.

THAT TIME I WAS A PAWN IN A GAME OF DENTAL CHESS

Remember when I missed my dentist appointment last year and panicked and then had to go and find a new dentist because I could never show my face there again? (Oh, you would have just called, apologized, and scheduled a new appointment? WELL AREN’T YOU RATIONAL AND BALANCED.)

Well, my new dentist (the one I think I have a crush on) referred me to a periodontist. Dentist #1 did x-rays two years ago so Dentist #2 said that we could probably get away with just using those rather than deal with insurance blah-blah, so I was like, “Fine I guess I will call Dentist #1 and get my records.” Dentist #1’s office was like, “Yeah you have to come in here and sign a release for that.” UGH.

So I went in there last week, hoping to sign the thing and flee, but as the receptionist was pulling up my records from the filing cabinet, a lady was sitting at a computer in the corner and apparently had been listening so she pulled my records on up the computer and exclaimed, “This xray is from two years ago! Why do you want this!?” and that’s when I realized that it was The Dentist so now I had to actual FACE HER and tell her that my new dentist had referred me to a periodontist and thought we could get away with using them and she was like, “WHO IS THE DENTIST” and I was like, “BITCH WHY” except that really, I meekly mumbled his name and then she asked me who the periodontist is and when I told her, she sucked in some air through her teeth and exchanged an “oh boy” look with the receptionist, prompting me to ask, “What? What? WHAT?” until she finally shrugged and said, “Well, I don’t like to talk bad…OK he’s just…not that GOOD” and I was like, “……” and then she was like, “Would you mind if I gave you my own referrals?” and I was like, “WTF is happening here” because the vibe got SO HEAVY AND ELECTRIC like everything else in the world had just stopped and now this strange dental dance was playing out in front of me.

I let her give me some referral cards and then of course this sent me into a spiral because WHAT IF I MAKE THE WRONG CHOICE and it was already so difficult to get a consultation to begin with and that appointment is coming up in two weeks and OMG I HATE ORAL ISSUES. Meanwhile, the receptionist was all, “So, why are you leaving us anyway?” and it turned into this super uncomfortable “it’s not you it’s me” routine and I was sweating and tugging at my collar.

Then I got home and it occurred to me that Dentist #1 is the reason I have to go to the periodontist in the first place because one of the procedures they performed on me was apparently inadequate and I have to have it done again. UGH.

IT’LL JUST TAKE 2 SECONDS

A few weeks ago (because that’s how behind I am at blogging!), we were just hanging out after work when someone knocked on the door. I fled immediately, as I do when there comes a knock upon the door. From my perch on the steps with our cat Drew, who also runs when she hears the sinister knocks of villains, I heard Henry saying, “I’m making dinner right now.” And then he repeated it. And then again. And again. And each time, whoever was at the door kept saying, “It’ll just take 2 seconds.” I was like, “Shit, who the fuck is at the door being so persistent, is Chooch selling cookie dough again?”

Turns out, it was some guy from Direct Energy and instead of just saying “No” or “I’m not interested,” he lead the guy on by making it sound like he just didn’t have time to talk to him right now, so when he finally shut the door on him, the guy CONTINUED TO STAND ON OUR PORCH and I know this because I could see his creepy silhouette and I was angry because I wanted to come back out of hiding and drink my coffee which was getting cold on the coffee table.

So Henry sighed, came back out of the kitchen, opened the door and said, “I’m cooking dinner” and the guy was like, “It’ll only take 2 seconds” and JUST LIKE THAT the whole weird door-to-door energy song and dance picked right back up. I was like JUST SAY NO, BRO and Henry finally got him to leave and I said, “Haley was outside on her porch the whole time, why didn’t he just go and give her his spiel?” So Henry then lectured me because the only reason these people come to our house is because I’m constantly coerced into signing up for things.

Then Henry acted SHOCKED when he CAME BACK an hour later, but he never told him NO! This time, Chooch was home and answered the door and the guy was like, “Your dad told me to come back after he made dinner” which was FALSE but ok so Chooch was like, “HEY HENRY GET DOWN HERE AND TALK TO THIS GUY” but Henry was like, “Not gonna.”

I’m in the kitchen washing dishes and I look out and see that the guy is still standing on the porch. I told Chooch, “Tell that guy to leave” and he was like, “NO HE’S NICE AND I FEEL BAD” so I told Chooch, “Look, just do what all of us adults do in these situations – lie. LIE THROUGH YOUR FUCKING TEETH, SONNY BOY. GOD WILL FORGIVE YOU.” Chooch told the guy that his dad wasn’t home and the guy repeated, “He told me to come back after dinner” like that’s an actual time on the clock, but Chooch was like, “OK cool but he’s not here, so…” The guy said, “OK buddy, I’ll just go and do something else and come back.” NO PLZ DON’T! (He didn’t. Yet.)

I’LL TURN THIS DAMN BUS AROUND

One day after school, Chooch super-casually me that there was an incident with the bus driver on the first day of Gifted. Chooch has gifted every Friday, but it’s off-site at the Gifted Center so the students from his school that attend that program get shuttled there on a school bus. “So, Trevor and I were just talking and apparently the bus driver thought it was ‘too loud’ so he pulled the bus over and yelled at us.” Chooch said that they made “HNGGGGGH” faces at each other and then apologized. But then, at end of day the students from Chooch’s school were stranded because the bus driver never showed. They had to wait for a back-up bus to arrive and when they got back to their school, the principal off-handedly mentioned that the bus driver from that morning didn’t show up BECAUSE HE QUIT.

“BECAUSE OF YOU!?” I cried.

“I guess,” Chooch shrugged. “He was really mad that morning and was yelling about how we were going to have to spend all year together.”

“Exactly how loud were you talking?!”

“I don’t know, like this…” and then he demonstrated a raised-voiced conversation similar to a businessman trying to talk over top of a woman in the boardroom, but something tells me there is more to the story than that.

Anyway, a few weeks later, that bus driver came back and Chooch said that he and Trevor are “super quiet” around him now.

Why am I having Billy Madison visions?

Oh, here’s Penelope.

THE LIFE-CHANGING ESSAY

Well, here’s another tale about my son because, friendly reminder, I’m a mom.

The other night, Chooch and I were out on a walk when he mentioned that he has to write a three-page essay about a moment that changed his life. So I’m walking along, mind swimming with all sorts of instances involving me and my awesome ideas and super fun parenting, thinking that maybe he’ll choose the moment he went to the DMZ in Korea or the time the singer from Emarosa got him to crowd-surf at one of their shows when he was like 9, or the moment he realized he loves math.

“So I knew right away—” he started, and I’m like, “Oh here it is! This is going to be so profound!”

“–that it was the time I watched that episode of ‘How I Met Your Mother’ where Lily is a loud chewer because that’s when I realized that OMG I hate the sound of chewing! Honestly, there are times when I sit in the backseat during roadtrips and cry.”

Um.

OK.

But three pages though?

Anyway, he changed it to the moment he went from the general population opinion of “yay rollercoasters” to the coaster enthusiast battle-cry of “HOLY FUCKING SHIT IT’S AN RMC IBOX, GOTTA GET THAT COASTER CRED, HOLD MY SLUSHIE.”

So, we’ll see how that goes.

I get so excited when I’m watching a K-Drama and see a place I’ve been! Shout out to the DDP, what what.

HUBERT FTW

Last Saturday, we were en route to a haunted house and passed a spot where there used to be a mini-golf place, which got me thinking about how my ex, Psycho Mike, and I were obsessed with playing mini golf this one summer, I think it was 1997 when I was 17/18. We liked it so much that we tried to go every mini golf place we could find in the—-wait for—-Yellow Pages. Sometimes this would bite us in the ass because we’d drive all  this way and it wasn’t a mini golf place anymore, but you know, who has to call ahead, amirite.

Then I remembered the time that I brought my old pet Pacman frog, Hubert, to play with us. I had a little portable aquarium for him and it was probably terrible to tote him around but I was a dumb kid who had no business raising a frog.

“Anyway,” I told Henry after taking a big breath because you’ve probably never heard me tell a story but I get really excited and start speed-talking. “Hubert ‘won’ and Mike got so pissed!”

Henry took his eyes off the road long enough to toss me a concerned frown.

“I KNOW RIGHT??” I screamed, but turns out, Henry was frowning about the part where I brought my frog to play mini-golf.

(Seriously though, Mike was SO ANGRY and I remember fighting about it for the rest of the night because that’s the kind of great fucking boy I was dating, and this is not a domestic violence joke but the truth: I probably for sure dodged a bullet by getting out of that relationship.)

Later that week, I felt inspired to dig around my old stuff to see if I still had the score card because, since mini golf was our game, I kept all that shit. And yep, still have it, stapled to a journal that he and I shared which honestly gave me PTSD-shakes when I opened it so I should probably burn it or drop kick it off a bridge but: the environment, and also, I am a memorabilia pack rat.

Don’t ask why I called myself “Bitch” other than I was 17 & dumb and also a pretty big bitch.

At work earlier this week, I was telling Todd this story because he LOVES Vintage Erin yarns.

“I have a picture of the score card for proof,” I said, scrolling through my camera roll.

“Oh, I believe you!” Todd laughed. “Taking a frog to play mini golf definitely sounds like something you would do.” He then went on to say that he’s also not surprised that I a mini golf maniac, since there is always something I’m 100% gung-ho about.

And oh boy, was I gung-ho about mini-golf. Now I can barely stand it.

OMG I HOPE THAT DOESN’T HAPPEN WITH KOREA?!

Sep 202019
 
  • My Friday started off with me getting ready to take a shower only to discover that nary a trickle was coming out of the showerhead. At first, I thought Henry forgot to pay the water bill or something and I was full of rage, but then he called and was like THERE WAS A WATER MAIN BREAK AND SCHOOL IS CANCELED so then I wasn’t hateful anymore, but that didn’t change the fact that I desperately needed to wash my hair because I went to bed with a deep conditioner in last night UGH I can’t tell you how much anxiety greasy hair gives me! One time in second grade, I discovered a small rash on my chest before I took a shower so I slathered Vaseline on it and yes, I definitely scopped an entire fistful out of the jar because that’s logical when you’re in elementary school. But then I went straight into the shower and you know, ran my lubed-up hands through my hair a million times while shampooing, transferring all that jelly into my locks. It was SO BAD, even after numerous shampoos, that my mom had to keep me home from school so I wouldn’t have a legit emotional breakdown in front of my classmates because SOCIAL PRESSURE HAS ALREADY BEEN MY ACHILLES HEEL. So yeah, like 30-odd years later, here I was once again having a panic attack in front of my bathroom mirror because my hair had conditioner caked to it and I could barely wash it out with the weak trickle coming out of the faucet. I considered asking to work from home but then I remembered that I had to collect cookie order money from some of my co-workers (yeah, I did that again for Chooch) and I won’t be in the office on Monday and it’s due on Tuesday!!! So I sucked it up and went to work with my hair feeling all weird and oily but no one said anything because why would they, they’re not 2nd grade assholes.
  • This one time in mid-90s, my brother Ryan was going to a birthday party so my mom took him to the mall to get a gift beforehand and I was like, “Let me catch a ride in that sick Eddie Bauer Explorer too, I need the new R.Kelly CD” and just a reminder, this was when we only kind of knew that maybe he was a fucking creep, and cancel culture wasn’t a thing yet, so we could still buy CDs and not feel shame knowing that we were supporting some dude who pisses on people or whatever. Anyway, my brother got his dumb friend a present too and then in the car on the way to the party, he needed to sign the card but of course there was no pen in the car, but then, and you guys, I couldn’t have planned this even if I tried, I realized that he could just use the label from my CD, the one you have to peel off and says the name of the artist and album, because my brother’s name is RYAN KELLY, you guys. R. KELLY. This has been the story about how my brother used an R.Kelly CD to sign a birthday card. *dab*
  • Guys tell me if this is a good idea or a great idea: Margie was telling me today that her daughter bakes on the side and she showed me pictures of some of her cookies and she makes those really nice ones with royal icing and whatnot and I was like, “I WILL HAVE TO KEEP HER IN MIND THE NEXT TIME I NEED COOKIES” which, come on, is always, but then I started thinking and said, “Actually…..” Look, G-Dragon is getting released from the military on October 26th and I was tossing around the idea of doing something to celebrate but I don’t want to have a party because I have like, a friend who would actually care enough to come and then I would have to clean the house anyway, SO WHY DON’T I JUST HAVE COOKIES MADE TO MARK THIS OCCASION??? I told Henry and he was like, “Sigh” so that means yes. Margie told me to just draw something up and she will ask her daughter if she can do it SO MAYBE I WILL HAVE SOME FRESH G-DRAGON COOKIES TO TAKE TO WORK NEXT MONTH STAY TUNED.

  • I’m still sad that Ric Ocasek died over the weekend. Henry and I both had the same startled reaction when we found out that he was 75! I honestly would have guessed 60, tops. Anyway, it got me thinking about how prevalent The Cars were on my “growing up” soundtrack. My dad was a big fan and I used to borrow his Cars CDs to add stuff to my mixed tapes until finally one day, I bought myself this fancy, purple-sparkly greatest hits set at Waves in Century III Mall and then Janna let me practice driving her car around the parking lot. But apparently I didn’t like them THAT MUCH because I literally just found out that there were TWO SINGERS?! No wonder “Drive” never sounded like The Cars to me!! This is really out of character for me because I generally know everything about music. CONSIDER ME HUMBLED.
  • Last week my work pal Carrie mentioned that she was making haluski and bringing some in for Wendy and I was like I LIKE HALUSKI TOO so then Carrie said she would also bring some in for me and I was happy but Wendy was like ugh whatever because she doesn’t like it when people pander to me haha. So then we were talking about our heritage or whatever and I mentioned that before I was Korean, I was actually a little Polish and everyone groaned. Carrie pointed out that you can’t go wrong with cabbage (I mean, an entire race of dolls was born in a cabbage patch) and that my new heritage also has a big cabbage dish—kimchi, obvi duh. I was thinking about this over the weekend and said to Henry that I thought it was so cool how cabbage is such a pivotal ingredient in two popular foods from both of my ethnic groups and Henry said, “it’s different kinds of cabbage though.” OMG STFU cabbagesplainer. (This just reminded me of the time in 2015 or 2016 when I referenced cabbages in every blog post for an entire month and no one noticed.) Anyway, Carrie’s haluski was AMAZE – she used really big noodles and I liked that.

Well, that’s all I got for this Friday Five.

Sep 132019
 

Sometimes when I don’t have five things to talk about on a Friday, I make them up.

But today I genuinely have five full things to share. OR DO I.

DREW & THE SOJU BOTTLE

My car Drew, love her, she’s real sweet & presh, habitually scratches my prized Devil rug on the back porch and it drives me insane. I was standing in the kitchen after work on Wednesday when she dove right into my rug with her dumb claws and I kept yelling her name over and over, imploring her to stop.

But she would not.

Why, you ask? Because cats are assholes, don’t ask me stupid questions.

In a flurry of panic, I grabbed the closest thing to me–an empty bottle of soju–and shook it at her.

No, I didn’t throw it, I just shook it. And not even aggressively either.

“What…did you think that was going to do?” Henry asked me slowly.

It was a moment of desperation, ok?!

EDDIE MONEY

Today at work, Todd emailed me and all it said was “RIP Eddie Money” with a link to one of his YouTube videos. I replied and said that I once, years ago, got in trouble for allegedly videotaping his free concert at the Pittsburgh Rib Fest.

“I knew you would have a story,” Todd emailed back.

I DON’T KNOW WHAT HE WAS IMPLYING but it’s true. It was 1999 or 2000, and Lisa and I went to the Rib Fest at IC Light Ampitheater in Station Square (my Pgh homies are like, “Dang girl, that WAS a long time ago”). Back then, even though I was already a vegetarian, I would always go to the rib fests because they would get killer classic rock bands to perform (like .38 Special and Bad Company!). When I saw that Eddie Money was performing that year, I was like, “LISA WE HAVE TO GO” and she was like, “Remind me why we’re friends again.”

Back then, I was super into taking my camcorder everywhere. I had been like this since 1995. You could say I was an OG Vlogger, but be thankful YouTube wasn’t around back then. Or any social media. (I know my friends are. Especially the ones I’m no longer friends with, lol.) Of course I had that damn thing with me at the rib fest, because I needed to get mullet footage, which was always the second best reason to go to the rib fest. Pittsburgh is a real treasure trove of mullets.

On our way out of the ampitheater, a gaggle of guards surrounded me and demanded that I hand over my camcorder.

I was totally blindsided by this. WHAT HAD I DONE? Did I accidentally record a government-sanctioned murder and now I was toting around high-profile evidence?

“You can’t film the concert,” one of the guards said, still reaching for my camcorder.

“I wasn’t filming the concert!” I cried defiantly. (Erin Rachelle Kelly, Hating Authority Since the 90s.)

But they kept demanding that I hand over the tape, and Lisa was hissing, “Just give them the tape!” like it was the keeper of a snuff film.

I kept swearing that I wasn’t filming Eddie Money, so one of the security guards said, “OK, play back part of it and show us,” and I very happily did so because I knew it was just going to show a bunch of drunk Yinzers swaying with me making some lame commentary behind the camera.

But no, when I hit play, it showed the literal 3 seconds of footage from when I casually pointed the camera at the stage, zoomed in on Eddie Money, and said, “We’re at an Eddie Money concert, you guys.”

The guards smirked at me and went back to demanding the tape, so now I had to go with a different tactic.

“MY GRANDFATHER’S BIRTHDAY PARTY IS ON THIS TAPE AND HE PASSED AWAY,” I cried.

I think making it personal really played to their emotions (one of the guards was a woman and she seemed sympathetic), plus I was like 19 or 20 and didn’t look like someone who was going to sell bootleg Eddie Money tapes on the black market, so they warned me not to do it again and then they let us leave.

Lisa was so embarrassed because this happened right in the middle of the entrance to the ampitheater so people were milling about and rubber-necking the whole time. BUT I’M SORRY I WASN’T GOING TO GIVE UP MY TAPE.

And yes, I still have it! MAYBE I WILL UPLOAD IT TO YOUTUBE!

If I ever find a way to play it.

THE SIDEWALK ATTACK

I went for a walk last night to burn off the annoyances of the day (it was my work-from-home late shift day but I was having problems logging on so I had to go into the office at the very last minute and I hadn’t washed my hair and I never go anywhere with unwashed hair and I just felt like a monster so I was like DON’T LOOK AT ME to all of my co-workers and it was just awful I hated yesterday very much). Anyway, I was walking along the sidewalk when suddenly, from the side of a wall next to me, some disgusting rodent-thing shot out at me and ran across my feet.

I jumped and yelped like a real DAMSEL IN DISTRESS, you guys. My heart was like thundahhhh against my ribs. Hoo boy.

“Well, what was it?!” Henry asked me, after I came bursting through the door yapping about how I was attacked.

“….an empty bag of potato chips,” I mumbled. I GUESS YOU COULD SAY IT WAS A REAL SNACK ATTACK.

“Wow. Too bad you didn’t have an empty bottle of soju to shake at it,” Henry deadpanned.

C U N T

I was talking to Margie at her desk the other day when someone from another department came out of the stairwell. Margie told him to have a good night and that she would see him tomorrow, but he said, “No, I’ll C U NEXT TUESDAY!”

I waited for him to turn the corner before pulling a super concerned face and hoarsely whispering, “OMG MARGIE HE CALLED YOU THE C-WORD!”

“He what!?!?” she cried incredulously.

“Yeah, he called you a…” and then I mouthed “cunt” because Work Erin is like SO PROPER AND WHOLESOME.

Oh, the layers I put on before leaving the house.

(I didn’t have time for any of them yesterday though so I was in rare form.)

Turns out, Margie has never heard the expression “c u next tuesday” but she knows it now. I felt good knowing that I enlightened her and now no one will ever be able to pull that one over on her again.

PUNCHFIAT

On one our walks, Chooch spotted a Fiat at a red light and said, “Oh my god, recently I was walking with Markie (little neighbor kid) and he did punchbuggy no punchbacks on me, but it was FIAT!” Chooch shook his head and scoffed, “He’s so stupid.”

I started to laugh at this and then said, “Wait…..that was me who said that!”

I remember it vividly because it was the day we were going to Kennywood and I was so excited because I never beat him at the punchbuggy game (I actually hate this game so damn much), so when I saw what I thought was a punchbuggy, I shouted it with such passion and slugged his upper arm.

I’m not stupid, I just have bad eyes!

****************

To conclude, here’s one of my current favorite songs and this video is relevant to this blog post because she’s basically me in the 90s following my friends around with a camcorder. (Somewhere out there is Janna thanking god that I’m out of the “I’M MAKING A DOCUMENTARY” phase. I’ll always terrorize my friends with words on this blog, though!)

Aug 302019
 

I’m always so happy to make it to Friday – doesn’t it feel like a VICTORY? Here are five  things that have happened since last Friday because contrary to popular belief, I actually am back to living  my life in Pittsburgh and not still stuck inside my head with Korea memREEZ. :(

A NEW DESK

I dragged Henry to Ikea on Saturday because I am sick of a lot of things in our house and we are slowly trying to upgrade all our shit so we’ll eventually be living less like college kids and maybe more like whatever comes after millenials. I can’t keep up with the lingo.

The first thing that I was adamant about replacing was our computer desk. LET ME TELL YOU A STORY ABOUT THE COMPUTER DESK.

Henry and I bought it at Ikea (“Someone tell these people there are other furniture places out there”) a long ass time ago, definitely before Chooch was born. I want to say possibly 16 years ago. That’s a long-ass time ago so you would probably agree that it needed replaced by now, but in actuality, it needed replaced the VERY DAY WE GOT IT.

So, this desk was like a big kidney-shaped plastic thing that I chose because, well, it looked cool. But it was always an awkward fit and never had a really good place in the house. But in addition to that, the day we brought it home, Henry had all of the pieces out of the box and was perusing the instructions, when MARCY (RIP sweet evil baby) strutted over, jumped onto the dining room table, against which the top of the new desk was leaning, and with one swift flick of her paw, she knocked the desk-top onto the floor.

No big deal, right? WRONG. The desk, like I mentioned before, was made of that dumb Ikea-plastic and was hollow, and when the desk top fell, it landed on something that BROKE THROUGH IT. So from the very first fucking day we had it, there was a hole in the top.

I lived for over a decade using a computer desk that had a hole in it, and of course it was conveniently placed right in the middle where you would be working the most.

A few years ago, Henry had the bright idea to turn the desk around so that the hole would be in the back, but because of the weird shape of it, it made things even worse and super uncomfortable because now one of the desk legs was right in the center so I would bash my legs off it any time I would move in my chair.

SO MUCH HATE.

Anyway, now we have a basic desk that’s not plastic and also has drawers so I feel like I’m really moving up in life.

Chooch was pissed because Henry put it together without him and he cried, “I wanted to help!” when he burst through the front door upon returning from the Teen Center.

“You did help,” Henry mumbled, “by not being here.”

Wow, sick burn, Handy Hank.

Anyway, the rest of my Saturday was trash because in addition to Ikea, we also went to the mall to buy school clothes and I hate the mall, but that leads me to my next Friday Five….

SEXIST ZUMIEZ

After I threw a silent fit in Express when Henry reminded me that we were there for Chooch (I keep spelling his name as Choco today) and not Erin, we went to Zumiez for more Chooch-appropriate* fare.

*(Although he did latch on to this one dress shirt at Express that was under a sign that said SALE! $19.50 but then rang up as $49.50 and Henry was like NOPE NOPE NOPE not for my 8th grader who still can’t manage to keep everything in his mouth when he eats so Henry tried to dispute it and they were like “OH JUST SELECT SHIRTS ARE ON SALE AND WE DON’T WHICH ONES UNTIL WE RING THEM  UP” ok Express, that’s not nonsensical at all.)

In Zumiez, Chooch gravitated to this windbreaker-type of color-blocked jacket that was actually pretty cool and I was considering getting it for him when some Zumiez broad came over and gave us her sales spiel followed by, “And just so you know, this is the girls side. The boys stuff is over there” and she pointed to all the ugly stuff.

“Yeah, we know, and we don’t care,” I said, snottily and then decided in that moment that Zumiez would get no business from me if they’re going to deter a boy from wearing pink or whatever.

I was ranting about this to Henry afterward (he wasn’t in the store with us when it happened but it’s not like his presence would have changed the narrative in any way at all, trust), and Mr. Zumiez Apologist donned his White Knight sword, and after clumsily mounting his Man-splainer steed, said, “Well, she probably just said that because girl shirts are cut differ—”

OH WOULD YOU JUST STFU HENRY.

BRUSTER’S BRAIN BUSTERS

Janna wanted to get ice cream so we met her at Bruster’s Sunday night, and it also kind of doubled as a back-to-school celebration for Chooch, who was running around all weekend, excitedly getting his backpack and supplies together and talking about how much he was looking forward to having homework again, and it was disgusting. Just so gross.

Anyway, back to the point. (I’m overcaffeinated and a loop of 2NE1 videos are playing on my TV which is getting me all hyped.) Chooch ordered Purple Dinosaur in a waffle cone, and the scooper-guy was like, “OK, but that’s going to be three scoops…” you know, just being cautionary about it.

Chooch sucked in his breath and said, “Yikes that’s a lot of scoops. OK, I’ll have…..NY Cheesecake in a waffle cone.”

In a waffle cone.

I just stared at him but he never flinched.

And then I waited for the scooper to hand him the waffle cone triple-jammed with NY Cheesecake for it to dawn on Chooch…

“Shit, it’s still three scoops!” he cried in shock.

Well, YEAH, what did you think, Einstein?! It wasn’t the particular FLAVOR that came with three scoops, it was the WAFFLE CONE.

OMG how can someone so smart be so stupid.

“What made you get NY cheesecake?” I asked after we were all settled at a table. (We tried to make Henry sit by himself at a table by a dumpster but he wouldn’t.)

“I was panicked when I had to choose another flavor so I just got this one!” Chooch said with Sadness-Tinged Exasperation, the flavor of the month at the Ordering Remorse Scoop Shop.

“What was Purple Dinosaur, anyway?” Henry asked.

“I don’t know!” Chooch scoffed haughtily in case we needed a reminder that he’s a recently-minted teenager. (OOH ANOTHER FLAVOR!?)

Found out later on Instagram that it’s just PURPLE-DYED VANILLA. Oh, he would have been so pissed if he wound up with triple vanilla.

Then we went to Giant Eagle for some last minute school lunch staples and Chooch was obviously super sugar-rushed after eating all three scoops while complaining about having to eat three scoops (being a kid is so hard) and I was super giddy too just because I almost always am and we caused so many scenes which Henry just loves, let me tell you. When we were in the parking lot leaving, I pointed to some guy who had the misfortune of being in the same aisle as us several times, and I said, “That guy hates us.”

Henry mumbled, “hate you…”

Wow. Ouch.

LAST SUMMER BREAKFAST CLUB OF 2019

Oh, the sadness!

We ended it the way we started it – full circle at Parker’s, our favorite local breakfast joint. I just can’t give this place enough accolades! The owners are so goddamn down to earth and they make you feel special. Luke always remembers stuff about us; gave Chooch dating advise (“just talk to them, don’t date them!” and “tell them you’re well-traveled!”) and both of us complimentary chocolate chip cookies; and told us a little about the bar he’s opening in the old Zippy’s location, which sounds like it’s going to be awesome and finally a decent drinking spot for the people in Brookline who, you know, aren’t white trash.

I almost always get the Little Miss Sunshine bagel sandwich, with sprouts, egg whites, avocado, tomato and mayo – it’s so satisfying! Chooch lately has been opting to build his own but then always remembers the things he wanted to add after the sandwich is already in front of him.

ANYWAY, it’s just a feel-good place, OK? We feel like we’re part of something cool when we go there, but not when Henry is with us. Henry ruins it.

CORGI MAIL

You guys, the most adorable thing happened. Chooch got a thank you card from the neighborhood Corgi, Spencer! We brought him some toys and treats back from Korea because why not, and his owner Bob is just the nicest guy ever, very Mr. Rogers-esque, which makes them kind of like a power duo. And the stamp Spencer used had a metallic orange dragon on it and an Asian temple!

Well, guys. That’s all I got. We leave tomorrow morning for our Kentucky Kingdom / Holiday World road trip so I’m not going to be able to sleep tonight!