Lol – lofty statements.
1. Brookline Gets a Veggie Burger
…and is this the best picture of it? Nope. But it’s the best you’re gonna get from me at least because I was in a big hurry to start gnawing at this beast and couldn’t really bother with angles and close ups, etc etc. This picture makes the veggie burger look like a Frenchman though. SEE IT?
Up until a few weeks ago, Brookline had zero veggie burger options. I mean, I could walk a few blocks away to Dormont and get one at Eat n Park but they literally serve Gardenburgers like it’s 1999 but without the party.
You guys know I loved Brookline’s sandwich shop, Parker’s, and shed legit tears when the proprietor (I just realized that I think this is one of my favorite words and it started in high school but that is a story for another time) announced he was closing in order to focus on the bar he had recently opened. Parker’s last day was about a year ago now, I would say, and it sat there, dormant for months and months until one day last winter, the paint changed from Parker’s signature bright blue stripes, to some plain blah neutral color that would be right at home in Henry’s basic wardrobe. I did a lot of muttering and foot-stamping over it because PARKER’S 4 LYFE, but I have to admit, every time I walked past (which is like every day because I’m a seasoned Brookline walker) I’d cup my hands around the windows and try to squint through the darkness to see if I could make out a menu on the wall or any semblance of a decor.
One night, Chooch was able to get a glimpse of the menu on the wall inside and he cried out, “VEGGIE BURGER!!!” I hesitated to get too excited. This could mean anything. A nuked Boca Burger, maybe dressed up a little with some Heinze pickles and enveloped in a Mancini’s bun? A sad attempt at a “homemade” black bean burger, dry as fuck, on a Wonderbread roll?
Then one day a few months ago, they painted their name on the storefront!
I checked them out and they’ve had an Instagram presence for quite a while because they’re not exactly new, it seems. I guess they have been operating as a pop-up at various local breweries (which would explain why I’ve never heard of them – I avoid any brewery event like the plague; that is NOT my scene) and have amassed a bit of a following. The food that they’ve posted in their feed is like hipster gourmet, if I had to terminology-ize it. (SMRT PPL MAKE UP WURDZ.) I was kind of like, “But is that gon’ fly in Brookline?” I remember when there was a rumor that the old Zippy’s Bar (a total Yinzer den) was going to be a wine bar, and people on the boulevard were buggin’ out over that (OK actually just the waitress at NO NAME CAFE, but if she was acting like, I can guarantee others were because, herd mentality. TRUMP TAUGHT ME THAT WORD.)
(J/k, I already knew it but laughed when he said herd mentality instead of immunity the other day and by laugh I mean I screamed OMFG I HATE YOU, YOU DUMB ORANGE PIECE OF SHIT.)
(This is why I lost 70847203947 blog readers. GET TO THE POINT, ERIN, YOU STUPID YOKEL.)
On their Instagram, I saw that they have, in the past, created NUMEROUS versions of veggie burgers, and they all looked like BEASTS. You could tell they were “from scratch,” the buns looked artisinal AF, and they had toppings with names that only a true gourmand would understand. I was ready.
They opened last month and we ordered take-out (the only thing they were offering until this week when they decided to open up with limited seating and I’m like, “OK but did you not see that news report that came out over the weekend? You know, THIS ONE?
Adults With COVID-19 Twice As Likely To Have Eaten At Restaurants, CDC Study Finds
But OK, go on.
Anyway, holy.fucking.shit. This burger. It had goat cheese and carmelized onion jam and cucumbers and tahini and and and…it was PRECIOUS. Not like, “Aw, look how precious Erin looks when she’s eating an ice cream cone and thinking about Taemin” but THAT RING IS MADE FROM PRECIOUS GEMS INFUSED WITH THE BLOOD OF CHRIST. That kind of precious.
WOW. Just wow. It was a taste sensation. Not vegan, of course, because of the goat cheese, but if you’re just a regular veg like me or someone who enjoys a meat fast every now and then, this is where it’s at. I imagine even the most professional carnivore would enjoy sinking their teeth into this fake flesh.
And we also got a side of the “chipped cabbage” which booted every cole slaw I’ve ever had right the fuck out of my heart. This shit was fire. I mean, literally because it had Thai chilis in it that I didn’t know about and wow that was a nice surprise. (No really, I like spicy stuff.) And it had parsnip in it! I love parsnip! Such an underrated root vegetable! (It’s a root vegetable, right?)
So, on their Instagram, I kept seeing their regulars Q-tipping their dickholes* over the biscuits. So finally, I caved and told Henry to get some the other day. WOW BOY, ok. I get it. I get it now. I’m not a huge biscuit person, and usually find them to be too dry, but these ones are monstrous mountains of carb-fluff. I don’t even have any pictures because I inhaled mine. But they’re on the “sweets” section of the menu because they come with a side of lemon curd and some type of house jam. GOOD GOD DAMN. This is where it’s at.
The one I had ended up being my dinner that night and I was fulfilled. I will happily get another one soon for, um, photographical purposes. I’d do that for, you.
*(So one time, way back when I was on LiveJournal, I submitted my journal to this stupid LJ Review community that was full of the meanest, most pretentious assholes** you’d ever meet, including Yours Truly eventually, and everyone was like “A+ let this bitch in” except this one dude was all salty and said, “I mean her journal is OK but nothing to Qtip my dickhole over” and I thought that was the best review of all time and about once every 4 years, I like to sling that saying as an homage to the guy who didn’t want to let me in and never did end up liking me.)
**(I’m still friends with some of those assholes, lol.)
2. Corneal Capsaicin
Wednesday evening was a memorable one.
Henry wasn’t home from work yet and Chooch was loitering in the kitchen, mumbling about wanting something spicy for dinner. He called Henry to bitch about being hungry and Henry was like “there is plenty of food in the kitchen, you and your mother just don’t know how to make it” which always pisses me off when he says that, like he’s some Food Magician or some shit. They had some dumb argument about this which ended with Chooch yelling, “DON’T BRING ME FOOD HOME” and Henry said, “I WON’T.”
“Make some of that buldak ramen,” I shrugged, only half-caring because I’m a great mother.
Chooch was pretty ambivalent about this idea but set about putting water in the kettle (side note: do you use a water kettle? It is apparently uncommon for American households to use one but I’ve one for years which I use to make coffee and I would be lost without it).
So everything is going fine, and the ramen is done, and I come into the kitchen to grab a set of chopsticks because I just want a bite (THE CHICKEN FLAVORING IS ARTIFICIAL). Chooch has just finished squeezing the packet of sauce into the bowl and had turned around to go to the sink when suddenly…
“OMFG. I touched my EYE. I AM SO STUPID WHY DID I DO THAT OMG,” and I was like “Haha” and about to snare some noods with my ‘sticks when I realized that oh shit, my kid isn’t just being hyper, he’s actually scream-crying and dry-heaving into the sink.
He started doing a FIRE IN THE HOLE dance in the middle of the kitchen, half bent over, arms fluttering, squealing like a pig.
“HELP ME!!!” he screamed.
And I’m standing there, chopsticks in midair, paralyzed as I often am when confronted with Mom Duties.
Or, Any Duties.
“UM, SPLASH WATER IN IT!” I yelled over my shoulder, running to get my phone, where I proceeded to Google, “HOW TO FIX PEPPER EYE.”
The first thing that came up:
Do not put water in eye. It will make the pain spread.
“OK, DON’T PUT WATER IN IT!” I yelled from the family room, to which he responded in a gurgle of snot and saliva, “ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME I HAVE BEEN WATERING MY EYE THIS WHOLE TIME” and then punctuated the sentence with an ungodly wail.
Now, I don’t know what this means* but whenever I’m confronted with a situation like this, my fight or flight response is, well, to FLY FAR AS FUCK AWAY, but also to laugh. I CAN’T HELP IT!
*(OK, look I know it means I’m an asshole, but I was hoping that some armchair psychologist would stumble upon this and reason that it actually means my empathy is SO INTENSE that the brain actually can’t handle the stress and just straight up splinters.)
By now I had found that the most common remedy is a cotton ball soaked in milk.
I swung open the fridge door and muttered, “Oh shit.”
“ARE YOU KIDDING ME? I HATE HIM!! I HATE HIM SO MUCH! HE NEVER GETS MILK!!!!” Chooch screamed. Now he was rocking back and forth on the kitchen floor and I was trying so hard to eat my laughter that I was coming very close to peeing my pants.
Chooch meanwhile was still screaming about hating Henry and how it was all Henry’s fault even though he wasn’t home, and I was like, “YES, THIS IS HIS FAULT. DOWN WITH HENRY! LET’S PILE UP ALL HIS THINGS AND BURN IT!” I let the narrative take this turn while I quietly slipped into the bathroom, where I was able to unleash a minute-long torrent of hearty, wheezy laughter. I emerged, red-faced with tears streaming down my cheeks, so now it looked like I was sharing a sympathy sob with my son, like the good little fucking mommy that I am.
We had both been trying to call Henry during this whole fiasco but he wasn’t answering.
Do you know why? Because he stopped at Oak Hill Post to get me the aforementioned biscuits, LOLOLOL.
Here’s Chooch fanning his eye while trying to unsuccessfully call Henry for the 80th time.
Things had finally started to calm down when Henry eventually came strolling in through the front door with the stride of a man who did nothing wrong and we immediately started screaming at him.
“How was this my fault?” he scoffed.
“Because you weren’t here to make dinner!!!” we screamed in tandem, always in sync when Henry is the common enemy.
“What’s this!?” Chooch screeched as Henry handed him a hunk of something in foil.
“It’s falafel. I stopped at Pitaland.”
“I TOLD YOU NOT TO GET ME ANYTHING!!!” Chooch screamed and then started sobbing, because he is nothing if not a flesh bag created to hold my excess emotions. He flung it down in the counter and ran off screaming, “THIS IS ALL YOUR FAULT!”
“Yeah,” I said smugly, biscuit crumbs spilling out of my mouth. “You made all the dominos fall.”
“YOU’RE THE ONE WHO TOLD HIM TO MAKE THE RAMEN!” Henry yelled. Shit. This is what I was thinking all along but kept hoping that the focal point of the hate stayed on Henry. I looked at Chooch, silently pleading with my precious (Not like, “THAT RING IS MADE FROM PRECIOUS GEMS INFUSED WITH THE BLOOD OF CHRIST” but “Aw, look how precious Erin looks when she’s eating an ice cream cone and thinking about Taemin) eyes.
I watched as Chooch connected the dots. “Hey! YEAH, YOU TOLD ME TO MAKE THE RAMEN!”
OK moving along!!!
3. WHAT? MORE SIDEWALK SAGA?
Remember when Chooch tagged a wet-cement sidewalk with his cat’s Instagram handle and then Henry was like THAT IS A CRIME and made Chooch think he was going to go to jail and then oh yeah the sidewalk belongs to his friend’s family up the street from us and her dad busted him when he went back up and tried to cover it up but Chooch failed to tell us that part until weeks later when he couldn’t take the pressure of his sins anymore and confessed in one long-winded blurt? Well, now the city is doing work on the entire street (gas line stuff? I think I have also seen the water company out there?). This has been going on for weeks now and is slowly working its way closer to my block. They spraypainted the areas where the work (aka THE DIGGING) will be happening and one of those places was The Sidewalk. We were like OH SHIT ARE YOU KIDDING but no, they weren’t kidding, because they started working on this week!
I walked by yesterday and there is now a huge hole in their yard and the sidewalk is gonzo.
Also, speaking of the road work, these guys doing the work are complete assholes. (Maybe they used to review LiveJournals!?) In the beginning, I used to smile and say hello when passing but they would just grunt or ignore me so now I have this bubbling hatred brewing from within and I finally upchucked a freshly baked Karen Cake from my mouth yesterday when I went for a walk and they had the sidewalks all cluttered with their manly accessories and machinery and then they PARK ON THE SIDEWALKS as well and loaf against their trucks, bullshitting with each other, while I’m left to zigzag from one side of the sidewalk to the other. I was on the phone with Henry and this is always when I’m the most passive-aggressive and feel emboldened to shout to him all the things I’m feeling about these people so that they will hear me and, you know, definitely not cry about it in their thermoses. But it still feels great to get it off my shoulders!
“AND THEY’RE SO FUCKING RUDE TOO! THEY TAKE UP THE WHOLE ROAD AND SIDEWALK AND THEN ANYTIME I TRY TO BE NICE AND SAY HI THEY IGNORE ME BECAUSE I’M JUST A LOWLY PEDESTRIAN WHO DARES TO SPEAK TO MANLY ROAD WORKERS.”
“Wow,” Henry mumbled on the other end.
“ASSHOLES!” I yelled over my shoulder. Then I went home through an alley so I wouldn’t have to pass them again HAHAHA.
4. Slut Life Moves to Florida
Remember that asshole who lives next to HNC and they had all kinds of drama and HNC wrote a letter to the landlord and name-dropped me in it three times because I was his ally? Well, HNC ended up signing a proverbial peace treaty with that dumb fuck because Slut Life’s grandma got involved and made him behave. I think what happened was that somehow they realized that have a family connection or something because it is SO BUDDY-BUDDY over there now and I hate it because HNC got me all fired up and made me the star witness of his imaginary trial and then abandoned me to steep alone in my solo-hate.
Yeah that’s right, I still hate the guy. He is so obnoxious the way he peels in and out of the driveway and into the road, never even looking before pulling out! Henry and I witnessed him nearly cause an accident three different times when we were sitting on the porch. (Oh also Slut Life told HNC he doesn’t like Henry so we always laugh whenever we’re outside and he goes out of his way not to look in our direction haha.) Anyway, not only is he a truly shitty driver (he almost hit me, remember?!), he also has extreme anger issues and will fucking scream at other drivers in his grating high pitched voice – trust me, we have front row seats for his outbursts as they often happen when he’s pulling out of the driveway.
Well, I overheard him telling HNC a few weeks ago that he’s MOVING TO FLORIDA IN OCTOBER. BITCH, BYE!
5. TAEMIN HAS BLACK HAIR AGAIN
This was originally going to be about how I’m still getting emails for other Erin Kellys and last week, I received an e-gift card for $150 CAD from Barbara Kelly, who even included a sweet note and I was like, “Barbara, you are lucky that I believe in karma and don’t want to cash this in and then get hit by a Facchiano truck” but I have already written nearly 3000 words on a FRIDAY FIVE, ARE YOU KIDDING, so instead let’s watch this video and be so excited that Taemin has black hair again!!!