Lol ok it wasn’t quite truly outrageous but it was really nice, nonetheless. I’m just Erin, not Jem, after all.
It is rare that I am in good spirits for an entire weekend without any mood dips or irrational thoughts or, I don’t know, the seam of my sock setting me off. But this was one of those rare weekends where not even Henry’s breathing was getting on my nerves. What the actual fuck, amirite?
Let’s start with Saturday. I was still jonesing for pumpkin ANYTHING after building that pumpkin patch on Thursday; you’d think handling all those pumpkins and getting scratched and scraped by their stems would have completely turned me off but no. I needed sweet pumpkin SOMETHING in my mouth. I saw on Instagram that Valkyrie Donuts had vegan pumpkin pies on hand so I sent Henry on over to Bellevue to procure a pumpkin pie for his princess.
It looked so good! And it was OK! I really liked the texture. But it didn’t have me turning cartwheels in the pumpkin patch of my mind, if you know what I mean. I think also that I’m just very hard to impress in these older years.
Then while Henry was PRIMING THE FRAME FOR MY SEOUL SUBWAY SIGN*, I finished watching Midnight Mass. Oh man, that gets a big HELL NO from me. I’m sorry if it’s your current netflix fave, but the writing, the monologues, and oh FOR FUCK’S SAKE THE ACTING, was excruciating. I really have enjoyed other shows by Mike Flanagan in the past so I was extremely surprised by the amount of ire this series drew up from the depths of my soul. Every fucking time there was a sign with, coincidentally, Erin & Riley, I was snoozin’. The convo they had about death? The way Riley was looking at Erin with that fucking creepy puppy-eyed love-drunk visage? Oh god, no just fuck off.
The only things I liked were Bev – I mean, obviously I hated her character, which was the whole point, but that role was played to perfection. And nothing exciting or even the least bit interesting happened until the penultimate episode, at which point shit hit the fan and I was like, “OK, Mike Flanagan, let’s gooooo” but that wasn’t enough to redeem the series. There is no excuse for the 5 episodes leading up to that, being so dreadful.
Oh, and the Sheriff. Loved him.
Chooch worked from 1:00 to 8:45 both days over the weekend, so Henry was like, “Fine. I will take you to a haunted house since you have no friends” and I was like, “Wow, thanks.” It was weird though! When was the last time Henry and I went to a haunted house, just the two of us, like it was a date?! I mean, I could check my haunted house journals but you don’t care and to be honest, I don’t either, IT WAS RHETORICAL.
I even had a GOING ON A DATE TO THE HAUNTED HOUSE ensemble picked out! I will have an entire post with the dumb photoshoot I did to promote this shirt, but for now, here we are, lol.
We went to Scare Manor, which is set up in a field behind an actually haunted building called Hill View Manor. It’s been featured on just about every popular ghost hunting TV show in existence. You could buy a combo ticket to tour the actual manor as well, but we opted to just do the haunt since the manor is open most of the year for tours.
I won’t get into the nitty gritty because I save that for the haunted house journal, don’t you know, but this place charmed my face off. Henry and I were the first people to go through and they sent just the two of us, which always makes this shit better. But this place was OLD SCHOOL. The scare actors were so into it and the set designs reminded me so much of all the haunted houses I loved when I was in high school in the 90s, back when there were so many little charity ones all over and they were cheap enough and close enough that you could go to two or three in one night and wake up the next morning with NO VOICE from all the hysterical shrieking.
This one tickled me so much that I felt inspired to go back inside the waiting area to let the people at the ticket table know that we loved it.
“Would you be willing to film a testimonial?” the ticket lady asked and I was like, “HO HO HO no.” But then she was like, “IT WILL BE FINE, JUST A QUICK ONE” and I was like, “Um….” because I hate saying no so I was like, “OK haha, fine” and she was like, “Yay let me just call the lady who does that” and then that lady appeared (Lisa I think was her name) and she was like “COOL GREAT I’M JUST GOING TO HAVE YOU STAND OVER HERE” and she made this big production of turning down the lights and putting her flashlight on her phone to illuminate us and now every single person waiting for a tour had turned around to watch, like, “the fuck is happening over there” and Henry muttered, “Thanks a lot, Erin” and I was like, “I will just let you do all the talking since I suck at this” but then Lisa started recording and suddenly PRIME TIME ERIN came out and I was super into it.
I mean, in my head I was. I have no idea how this video turned out because it’s now Monday and nowhere to be seen.
Then we came home and later that night I told Chooch to wash the dishes and he said, “I worked all day” so that was cool. I’m surprised it took him nearly a full week of working to drop that line on me.
The next day, Henry and I went to Many More, an Asian market in the Strip. I needed some more Korean popsicles for the G-Dragon popsicle art I’m making and Henry needed to buy boring stuff like produce. They had a new-to-us KitKat flavor though and I think it’s my new favorite?
It’s like wheat cracker or something? And the chocolate part is like this delicious and mild golden coating and I am so sad that this isn’t a standard flavor.
Then I found out that there isn’t just one new baby Buddy, there are two! Here’s one chilling with Girl Buddy (aka Mom Buddy) while the other babe was noshing on our windowsill. Before I took this picture, Henry and I had just come from Giant Eagle and I saw Girl Buddy foraging in our front yard, near the street. I knew that they were out of peanuts but we had just bought more at the grocery store, so I crossed the street and said, “Buddy! Come with me! I have peanuts!” and she fucking FOLLOWED ME DOWN THE SIDEWALK TO THE PORCH, where she then skittered around my feet impatiently while I opened the bag of peanuts.
I felt like this was truly Next Level squirrelling. My dream is for them to eventually sit in my lap where I can pet them while they eat their peanuts.
Let’s see, what else. Oh! Henry and I started season three of IN THE DARK Friday night so we watched some of that off and on over the weekend. I can’t even tell you how happy I am to have this show back on my TV! It was such a sleeper hit for me when I accidentally started watching it on Netflix last year. I got my friend Megan (aka my Logging Partner), to also watch it and she too was like, “DID YOU SEE SEASON THREE IS COMING!?” Guys, this show is so good. I mean, it’s outrageous (like me and Jem) but so fucking good and dark and funny and suspenseful and the CHARACTERS!!! Felix forever!!!
Henry took me to another new-to-us haunt later that night! Thank god we actually like each other or else we’d be fucked now that the Child Buffer has been removed. I know it’s only been a week and I’m not saying that I’m happy to have Chooch out of the house with a job or anything like that, believe me, but I’m also KIND OF excited at the idea of like, doing couple things again. I mean, not that we didn’t go out without Chooch in the last 15 years, of course we went to concerts and things like that, but it just feels different now? Kind of cute? Also scary because at the end of the day it only means we’re getting old? Lol. Ugh, just be happy, Erin. Enjoy it, Erin. Don’t cloud it with negativity, Erin.
Anyway, in that picture up there, you can see the WORLD’S TALLEST SMOKESTACK, located in Homer City. We were driving through farmland and as we came up over a crest in the road, that fucking thing became visible and I started screaming, “AHHH WHAT IS THAT??” I took this picture when we were further away so it’s not as scary but I literally felt like I was dumped into a 1950s sci-fi movie for a second.
Anyway, we went to Scary Harry’s which is a little over an hour away in Homer City, whatever that means. I have always seen this one come up in haunt listings but for some reason, we have never gone. I had it on the list for this season because I was looking specifically for haunts that are open on Thursdays and Sundays because those are preferable nights since the crowds are low. A lot of haunts cut back their hours to just Fridays and Saturdays this year, presumably because of the pandemic/being short on people. But Scary Harry’s is open on Sundays so this is the one I chose. Plus, $15!! I swear, that’s actually a really good deal in the haunted house world.
We listened to Alexisonfire the whole way there because I have been on this Riot Fest nostalgia kick lately even though Riot Fest turned dumb so we no longer go. But the three times we did attend were a lot of fun (well, mostly for me) and I will never forget the way I felt when I saw Alexisonfire perform there. I also associate them with fall too so it seemed like the perfect musical accompaniment for an hour-long ride in drizzling rain and chilly temps.
Waiting in the rain!
It thankfully stopped raining by the time the place opened and for the second night in a row, we were the first ones in! Again, I’ll save the play-by-play for the journal but this one exceeding expectations, too! I thought it was just going to be some dinky haunted trail but it was so much more than that and I will say that I can’t really think of another haunt that used audio as a scare device as effectively and in an array of different scenarios as well as Scary Harry’s. I mean, there were times when a sound scared me more than the live scare actors, and there was also a certain area in the “saloon” that had me panicking and screaming, “HENRY WHERE ARE YOU OMG I HATE THIS HELP” lol. It was SO GOOD. We even bonded a little bit with the other much younger couple (from Punxsutawney!) who got stuck going through with us, and we had a nice chat with the parking lot worker afterward because when a haunt is actually good, I love to tell someone who works there because I would want to hear good feedback too if I was affiliated with a haunted house! This is always the time when real, authentic Erin comes out and is suddenly a functioning member of society who can use her words without stuttering or being awkward. Man, I missed that Erin. Wish she’d stick around full-time!
What a delightful weekend, honestly.