Nov 082021

As someone who really enjoyed the process of getting ready for work every morning, I have really been at odds with this never-ending WFH sitch. I know I have whined about this a million times since 2020 at this point but to summarize: I am ultra-grateful that I work at a place where our safety and health comes first and we have the capability of efficiently and seamlessly doing our jobs from home. I really do like that, I swear.

But I miss all of my clothes! I mean I suppose I could still wear them “to work” even though I’m not leaving the house but it’s not the same and also not conducive to my hourly five-minute jogging in place.

I keep telling Henry that he needs to start taking me on dates so I can wear my nice clothes (while he alternates between two flannels lol but who cares what he’s wearing when all of my clothes are so cute) or else I’m going to find other people to go on dates with. That definitely has not lit any fires under his ass lol.

Anyway, I was off on Monday and felt momentarily motivated to organize my closet but then within the first 2 minutes I spotted one of my favorite blouses that I definitely have not worn since probably 2019 at this point and then I also found a pair of jeans that I took to Korea in 2018 and thought I lost but no, they were balled up and punched into the back of a shelf on top of closet. So instead of organizing, I declared to the cats that it was PHOTOSHOOT TIME, starring Horsey shirt from F21 and guest-starring a striped thermal from H&M that I bought last year and have worn zero times.

Enjoy. Or don’t enjoy. It’s a free country. Um, I will also pepper this bitchin’ stew with some fun-ish facts about me, things that have been on my mind, dot dot dot?

  • Instead of butter, I spray popcorn with Pam. I picked that habit up as a child from my aunt Sharon and grandma, because they were always trying to cut calories (I still have a fondness for Melba toast crackers because of my grandma and also have a pretty chunky fear of food, lol). I’m sure I probably have tumors from this but I’m too afraid to google “does Pam cause cancer” so…Mmm, buttered aerosol!

  • I am off work today (it always gets to this part of the year and I’m racing to use my PTO) so I walked to Mediterra in Mt, Lebanon to get one of their exquisite pumpkin spice lattes. I had to wait at the bar area because it was shockingly bumpin’ for 10:15am on a Tuesday. I was only half-paying attention to the barista guy. He asked me if I was the to-go PSL, and that he had tow more drinks to make but then mine was up. I thought that was considerate of him to tell me, and then I went back to scrolling through Instagram. When he was done with my latte, he set it down without the lid on and said, “Because I wanted you to see that I gave you a heart because I care” and I AM SURE HE SAYS THIS TO EVERYONE but it was literally all it took to get me to have an instant crush because my self-worth is…where is it? Down there somewhere. You might be stepping on it. Anyway, so now I will be going to this place a lot. I called Henry immediately to tell him. “And he was totally my type!” I said breathily. “Korean?” Henry asked sarcastically and I said, “No. Actually, I don’t really know if he was cute because he was wearing a mask. But he was like, mid-20s. And looked like he might like Balance and Composure. So…”

  • When I was little, my dad was friends with this dude who had a daughter around my age named MANDY and MANDY was like TRES PERFECTIQUE. (Fun fact within a fun fact: I do not know French.) Anyway, I just remember that she was like blond and skinny and pretty and popular and I was fat and fat and fat and fat and sometimes we would get invited over to go swimming which was, woo hoo, so great for me, especially since she had an older brother who got to see me jiggling in my swimsuit. The one thing about MANDY in a list of SO MANY GREAT THINGS ABOUT MANDY (I accidentally typed “mandu” just then which is a Korean dumpling and far superior to MANDY) was that she was a Tamburitzen. I had no idea WTF a Tamburitzen was but her mother used to brag about her performances all the fucking time like OK we get it, MANDY is the Gen X MARSHA BRADY. Jesus Fucking Christ. ANYWAY, I just recently saw something about how the Mattress Factory – my favorite local art museum – hosted some kind of event in which the TAMBURITZENS performed and apparently even after all  these years, I am still triggered. BRB going to google MANDY.

  • Did you know that before Henry and I were officially dating, I was still with my current boyfriend Jeff and all this shit went down where I was reunited with my bio dad’s mother and aunt for the first time since he died when I was 3 and they told me all this shit I didn’t know about him and I was having a fucking identity crisis having grown up not knowing my birth dad’s family at all, and I called Jeff all upset whose response was something super sweet like, “Well, if you’re going  to be all upset about this stuff tonight, let’s just go out another time” OR SOMETHING SMILARLY CALLOUS so I went to the cemetery and sat next to my dad’s grave and didn’t know who else to call so I called Henry (OMG on my NOKIA cell phone #2001) and he came to the cemetery with a bottle of water knowing that I was probably crying and dehydrated and then I took a sip of water and it went down the wrong pipe and I started choking and he essentially saved me, almost killed me, and then saved me again all in the span of like 5 minutes and I guess that’s when I knew he was the one lol. OH MEMORIES.

  • Hey speaking of identity crises, can I take a second to bitch about HOW FRUSTRATING it is when people outside of my department at work call me “Kelly” in emails? I mean, I know it’s an easy mistake for people like me with two first names but it’s still annoying. However, there is this one lady who is a part of our sister department in Melbourne AND SHE HAS CONSISTENTLY referred to me as “Kelly” for as long as she has been here, which has been at least five years at this point. It is so fucking insulting!!! And just when I thought she couldn’t offend me any deeper, she copied me on email recently where she referred to me as KELLY ERIN. KELLY ERIN!!!!! I just really fucking can’t. It kills me. How hard is it to know the names of your COWORKERS?!?! We were even in the same GROUP in the department until recently.

  • My all time favorite grilled cheese is on pumpernickel bread with artichoke hearts and dill Havarti. I call it the “Adult Grilled Cheese.” My second favorite is gouda or cheddar and raspberry jam on any type of bread.  I haven’t had either of these in YEARS though!

  • I’m not afraid of clowns because I spent a shit ton of my childhood at my grandparents’ house where my grandma had an entire room full of clowns and she would sometimes pay me to dust in there. I suppose this could have gone either way, though! The two clown paintings in the background are actually from the Gillcrest Clown Room!

  • This one time in 2002 when I worked at the REALLY SUPER TERRIBLE MEAT PLACE that left me a stutter and social anxiety, one of the drivers had apparently stolen money or something, I can’t remember the full details now, but DETECTIVES got involved and I had to sit in a conference room with them for THREE HOURS getting grilled (and the one detective was a super huge prick, I’m sure you’re shocked) because I was responsible for checking in drivers and also one of the salesmen was also getting interrogated with me and after all of that, one of the owners came in and asked the salesman if he wanted lunch from Lotus Garden but DID NOT ASK ME and that is so on brand for the way I was treated there for 4 years. FUCK YOU, WEISS MEATS. Also, I was one of only 2 women who worked there and was referred to universally as The Girl, so I guess being called “Kelly” at my present job isn’t the worst thing in the world BUT STILL.

  • OMG I am perusing LiveJournal entries from 2002 and apparently there was some salesman from the Pennysaver who used to come into Weiss Meats to do ad stuff with them and it turned out that we liked some of the same bands (I was really into hard rock and OMG nu metal back then) and he would sometimes borrow CDs from me but APPARENTLY on this one day as he was leaving, he said, “THANKS, KEL” and I was so angry. He really liked this band called Primer 55 and they were so shitty.

  • OK speaking of shitty bands, this is about to be the BIGGEST SECRET I WILL EVER TELL ON THIS BLOG, OK. I *liked* Nickelback for a hot minute AND EVEN BOUGHT A SHIRT AND HAD THEM SIGN IT when I saw them open for THREE DOORS DOWN in 2001. I ACTUALLY TALKED TO THAT CHAD DUDE AND HE WAS SUCH A CUNT. I KNOW THIS IS A SHOCKING REVELATION. But he was so impatient to sign my shit and move me along so he could get to the bitchin’ metal babe in a tube top behind me. OMG I don’t know what is happening in my head right now but everything is tying together because I just remembered that I WAS WEARING THAT NICKELBACK SHIRT the day referenced in an earlier FUN FAT where I went to meet my birth dad’s mom and then almost drowned on bottle water at Jefferson Memorial. Um, don’t worry. I donated that shirt to Goodwill a really long time ago, lol.

  • Speaking of NICkelback and EMBARRASSING LIKES, Con Air starring NIColas Cage was on TV the other night and I furiously shushed Henry who had the audacity to try and converse with me while I was watching that while painting my nails. “I’ll never understand how this is one of your favorite movies,” he mumbled to which I mumbled that I was going through a heavy John Cusack phase in the 90s, bro and also do I even need a reason and alsox2, I have never NOT CRIED AT THE END and trust me, I cried at the end last week too. You can ask Chooch who was standing there looking uber concerned because we were about to leave for a walk but I held up a hand and cried, “WAIT. I HAVE TO WATCH THE END FIRST” and he was like, “Wait…you actually like this movie?” OMFG houseful of Con Air haters.

  • I also really liked A Perfect Circle and Cold back then too but I have no shame or regrets with those musical choices at all, in fact, this just inspired me to bark, “HEY ALEXA, PLAY A PERFECT CIRCLE. YOU DUMB CUNT.”

  • Hey speaking of Echo/Alexa, Henry tried to program it so that Alexa (or whoever the dude is that talks on our kitchen Echo Show now) will call me a cunt in response, but THEY GOTTA STAY G-RATED APPARENTLY, SORRY HENRY.

  • Sometime in middle school, I found a copy of “Ghost Story” by Peter Straub in my grandparent’s basement and read it over the summer. I remember sitting in the rarely-used living room of my parent’s house and having legit goosebumps in broad daylight because that book scared me so much. I always say it’s one of the scariest books I’ve ever read but I have always been too afraid to re-read it in case it doesn’t hold up.

(Isn’t this fun?? It makes me feel like I’m having lunch with a real life friend and just chatting about life, or you know, sitting on a therapist’s couch.)

  • Since I’m on a 2002 LiveJournal entry kick, here is a riveting tale of PIZZA DAY at Weiss Meats:

Every Friday, my other boss, Elliott, runs up to me all excitedly and says ‘Pizza today!’ which means that I have to don a stupid baseball cap and trudge on down to the cutting room to see what the meat cutters want on their pizzas. Today was no different. Except I forgot to wear the hat, and the Federal Inspector, Dave, was down there. So i asked him if he could go in for me and get their orders. He said ‘C’mon, Erin, it’s me. You think I really care if you go in their with your hair exposed?’ Ha. Federal Inspectors have the easiest job. So I get the orders and John, the foreman, gives me $50. I was like ‘What’s this for? You know Elliott always pays.’ He insisted that I take it because HE wanted to pay. Why is beyond me. But then Pete, another meat cutter, pulled out $60 and said ‘No, I’LL pay.’ The two of them argued it out, and Pete won. Apparently no one wants Elliott doing them any favors. What do I care though? I still didn’t have to pay.

I go back upstairs to the offices and show Elliott the list, so he can calculate how many pizzas to get. This is really fun to watch. Not really. We then must decide where to get the pizza. Italian Village is the fastest, but they ‘really like Firinzi’s.’ Elliott tells me to get it from the latter and that he’ll have someone go and pick it up, so it’lll be faster. Aaron, Elliott’s son, says that HE will call. Which is fine by me, because I hate talking to that Italian woman.

Just when I think everything is over with, Eric comes upstairs with a menu for One Eyed Willie’s and starts getting orders. Joe and Elliott run into the kitchen, panicked, saying ‘The girl already got orders for pizza! What’s going on?’ They were quite literally ricocheting off walls. Eric explained that some people wanted to order from One Eyed Willie’s and that it had nothing to do with the pizza. Mass confusion subsides.

Until an hour later, when Elliott becomes antsy for his pizza, that is. I asked him who was going to pick it up, in which he replies ‘Yanno, I have no idea.’ So then erupts the search for Aaron. When Aaron is found, they find out that the pizza, is, in fact, being delivered.

Fifteen minuted later, pizza arrives. Everyone’s happy. My head hurts.

  • I only bought this splendid popcorn carrier from Everland in Korea because I immediately envisioned it having a second life as a purse.

  • Apparently on November 6, 2002, “I was so pissed off last night because I thought I taped Felicity, but my stupid Tony Little Gazelle tape was in there instead.” Wow,  talk about telling me it’s 2002 without telling me, U NO. (Oh great, here I go on my Scott Speedman kick again.)

Well, this post is spiraling. I’m going to go and try to enjoy the rest of my day off, I guess, now that I have thoroughly depressed myself with skimming LiveJournal posts from 2002. I can honestly say that my life is a million times better at 42 than 23. Y-y-y-y-yikes. Also, how the fuck did Henry and I make it this long?? After reading some of that shit, I truthfully have no idea but thank god, man.

Oct 242021

I just feel like doing a good ol’ fashioned free-form post today to clear my mind so that’s, that’s just what we’re going to do. Because I said so.

Chooch didn’t have school last Monday, and I was CONVENIENTLY off work (he was like, “YOU DID THIS ON PURPOSE” – who? me?) so I woke his ass up early-ish because I wanted to go out for breakfast. We didn’t have a single BREAKFAST CLUB MEETING all summer because I didn’t feel like fighting to wake him up early and also because…apathy.

But I had been wanting to go to Mediterra Cafe in Mt, Lebanon for quite some time and Monday seemed like JUST THE DAY FOR IT. I already knew that I wanted the 4-Grain Porridge because I love feeling like a fairy tale bitch eating a hot bowl of sludge on a toadstool in the forest. And this shit always fills me up more than more decadent offerings.

Idiot Chooch was like, “I DUNNO, I GUESS THE BREAKFAST SANDWICH” because he is 15 and is unable to do more than just glance at a menu and pick the first meatless thing he sees. I’m surprised he was able to lift his face up from his stupid Discord chat long enough to get his eyes to focus on off-screen words.

Can we talk about this pumpkin spice latte, though? It cost the big bougie bucks and I initially blanched at that because I’m not the biggest PSL (ugh) fan, and I think that Starbucks’ is especially overrated. But this? HOLY. FUCKING. COW. (Literally have never said that in my life, btw, but this latte brings out the potty-mouthed farmgirl side of me I guess.) This was so rich and smooth, none of that synthetic syrup flavoring, with actual SPICES in it. I love a cafe that makes their own pumpkin spice lattes!

I literally have not been able to stop thinking about this cup of hot pumpkin-patched heaven since Monday. I gotta get back there. I’m off all this week so if anyone wants to meet me out there at any point, holler at me, she said into the void.

The only downside to this is that my company left much to be desired. 15-year-olds, man. You just never know what you’re going to get. Some days he can be so talkative and willing to share details of his life, like how some of his friends are having this really stupid feud, or he’ll show me the website he’s been designing for his coding class without me having to ask. Other days, you can’t even ask him a simple question, like, “Are you hungry?” without having your head lopped off with his scythe-tongued retorts. Woo hoo, these years are awesome! My mom was like, “This is payback” but joke’s on her because he’s not even a tiny bit as terrible and gruesome and volatile I was at that age, so.

I mean, I think 15 was the age my mom called the cops on me and tried to have me committed, and I haven’t had to do that to Chooch yet so I think I’m winning this game.

In other Chooch news though, he has been a work-horse for McDonald’s! Part of me can’t believe he’s so into this, but then I remember how money-motivated he is and all the years he spent playing games like Diner Dash and whatever, which has clearly prepared him for the real thing. Lol. He asked to work the max amount of hours allowed for a minor but you can bet your apple-bottomed ass that I am keeping a close eye on this and the second it starts to affect his schoolwork, Mommy’s stepping in.

Anyway, he was on Drive-Thru yesterday and asked us to stop by.

Why is he like this!??! Henry was like, “Doesn’t he know there are cameras everywhere? Idiot.” Lol. Anyway, he reminds me so much of how my brother Ryan was at that age, it’s almost uncanny at times, although I don’t remember Ryan having such a shitty attitude, lol.

Oh and for all that “independent son” talk I have been spitting lately, he lost his work visor (“I left it on my floor so I would know where it was!” he screamed, and like—oh well?) and that thing Henry handed him in the video is a one-time trolley ticket thingie because DUMB ASS lost his student ID which he also needs to ride public transportation for free, so that’s actually the whole reason we were visiting him because I said, “Look bud, MOMMY AND DADDY are going to a haunted house tonight so don’t be calling us to cart your ass home.” Parenting is a fun time.

In NATURE NEWS: We have been terrorized by a family of BLUE JAYS and now Henry is having to buy twice as much peanuts because it’s like fucking hunger games out there between these Blue Jay assholes and my beloved squirrels. Henry was like, “Maybe we should see what blue jays like to eat so they’ll leave the peanuts alone” and I was like OK LET ME RESEARCH THAT SHIT, HEY GOOGLE… and of course what I discovered was:


I mean at first it was cool. Like, woo hoo there is a blue jay, wow, oooh. But now they come in trios and they scream bloody murder out there. Like good Lord, take the fucking peanut and leave, you greedy bastards.

So now we’re trying to devise an anti-blue jay feeder for the squirrels, literally the reverse of what people are usually trying to accomplish lol. I just love my squirrels so much! They have been a big bright spot in my life during pandemic times.

And the cats are just like FUCK OUR LIVES.

What else. I finished Season 3 of In The Dark. WHAT A RIDE. That show is so ridiculous and implausible but the cast keeps me coming back. And I just found out it was renewed for a fourth season!! I also started Season 3 of You yesterday so I’ll be dipping into that some more while I’m off for my annual HALLOCATION this week. I dunno what else I’m going to do with myself because the weather is supposed to be dreary and rainy so my plan to go on a million walks has a huge hole in it now. Maybe…mall walks? Lol OMG I’m such an Elder.

Really loving CL’s new music! Here is a great one for you to enjoy on this lovely October Sunday:

She is the fucking queen, legitimately.

My life lately just consists of work, squirrels, and haunted houses. My hand has been straight cramped this month from all the actual writing I’ve been doing in my haunted house journal. It feels so good to be doing this again after taking the 2020 season off because of Covid/not being vaccinated. It’s also been fun going to some with just Henry this season too because it makes me feel like Erin & Henry: The Early Years. We actually first started dating exclusively in the fall of 2001 and I wonder if he was just like, “OK cool, we will go to 2 or 3 haunted houses, I guess” when I was like, “Just an FYI, I am OBSESSED with haunted houses.” And then BAM, I’m presenting him with a list of haunted houses, prices, and dates found in my annual Internet haunt research, while I’m dusting off my haunted house journal.

Like no, dude. I don’t just “like” things. I FUCKING LIVE/EAT/BREATHE things or hate things. There is no in-between.

Well, on that note, I have some stuff to do around the house, things to recap in said haunted house journal, rainy walks to take, books to read, and a haunted house to go to tonight. So ciao for now!

Oct 122021

I was so excited when I went to bed Friday night because we were going to Six Flags Great Adventure in Jackson, New Jersey the next day. You know how when you’re a kid and you get that Xmas Eve bellyful of butterflies? That’s how I feel on nights before amusement park visits, lol.

“ONE MORE SLEEP UNTIL SIX FLAGS!” – says 42-year-old Erin, lol.

But then I woke up early as instructed by Road Trip Dad, and talk about WRONG SIDE OF THE BED times 18979312. To say I was in “a mood” is putting it mildly. I was basically on a rampage, prepared to have a terrible day, determined to shred my self-worth to shreds, refusing to let any rational thoughts or reasoning sink into my furious brain. So instead of leaving at 6am like Henry wanted, I threw a 2-hour-long fit, oscillating between I’M NOT GOING to WHY DON’T YOU CARE ENOUGH TO MAKE ME GO to I WISH I COULD RIP THE FLESH OFF MY BONES I HATE MYSELF SO MUCH.

I don’t know why I get this way.

Oh wait, yes I do. Bi-polar.

And an eating disorder/food phobia/body dysmorphia. Lol.

Anyway, two hours later and I had calmed down enough to put myself together and we set off (also because Henry already paid for the hotel and we were past the cancellation deadline lol). But my whole point in telling you all of this is that I truly believe that everything happens for a reason, and even though the morning SUCKED and I hate feeling out of control, something good came out of it.

Because a few hours later, we stopped at a rest area near Bedford, PA and as we were walking across the parking lot, I heard someone say, “Erin?” At first it didn’t even occur to me it was actually me who was being addressed, but then when I noticed a woman walking toward me I went into FIGHT-OR-FLIGHT mode.

Then my eyes focused and I realized it was my friend Bridget, who left The Law Firm several years ago to move to Texas! It was honestly a really sad day when she left and I remember trying to avoid saying goodbye to her until the final hour when my friend Lauren came over to my desk and said, “OK look, you have got to tell her goodbye. I’ll go with you.” I might try to act like I’m all cold-hearted and partially agoraphobic, but I am a huge sap when it comes to saying goodbye.

Anyway, Bridget recently moved back to Pittsburgh and she and her husband were actually en route to Lancaster for the weekend, so it was a super happy coincidence that we happened to be traveling at the same time and in the same direction, and that we ran into each other at some rando rest stop!

Henry is angry at himself for missing the opportunity to harangue Bridget for endorsing Magic Spoon cereal because ever since she convinced me to give it a shot last spring, I have been hooked and that shit is not cheap (for cereal). Henry makes all kinds of sarcastic comments to Chooch, like, “No, you can’t get new shoes. Your mother has to buy her expensive cereal.” And “Wow, my cereal costs less AND I get so much more in a box.”

I don’t care, I love this stuff! The satiety factor is so good that I don’t want to eat  my arm off an hour post-breakfast like I usually do with anything else. I even bought the official Magic Spoon spoon!

And from a design standpoint, the boxes are so eye-catching and fun! Here are the fall flavors that I am almost out of and just told Henry I need to buy more at which point he mumbled about IT’LL HAVE TO WAIT because this cereal is apparently A LUXURY EXPENSE and not like when Chooch needs milk and Henry drops everything to run to the store.


Wow sorry. This somehow turned into a SPONSORED POST. j/k I have no sponsors.

Anyway! It was amazing to see Bridget but it made me sad also because I miss the way things used to be at the law firm, but I guess even then I was missing the way things used to be EVEN BEFORE, because we’re never happy in the moment ARE WE?

This was also hilariously the second time I’ve run into a former LAW FIRM friend at a rest stop. The other time was my friend Mary at a rest stop in Ohio on the way home from Cedar Point. WHO WILL BE THE THIRD, AND WHAT AMUSEMENT PARK WILL BE INVOLVED??

After that, we continued on through Pennsylvania, where I was desperate to find a Sheetz before entering the dreaded Wawa Zone, but the only one that was close was smack in the middle of Ren Faire land and traffic off of the exit ramp was a disaster.

So, no Sheetz (or lunch) for me. Henry and Chooch bought snacks at pretty much every single rest stop 7-11 so they were fine but I was going back and forth between I NEED TO EAT and STARVE YOURSELF, FAT GIRL. Saturday was a really good day for me. Lots of self love.

The rest of the drive was completely boring. I went back and forth between listening to an audio book and telling Henry that I hate him which he knows translates into, “I hate myself so much that the hate is overflowing and splashing onto you, I will probably apologize to you for this tomorrow but right now: I HATE YOU AND THINK YOU ARE SO DUMB AND YOU HAVE RUINED MY LIFE, FUCK OFF. P.S. YOUR HAIR CUT IS STUPID.

I am so pleasant!

Then we got to Six Flags Great Adventure and I funneled all of my hateful energy onto the copious amounts of LINE JUMPERS we encountered, so Chooch and Henry enjoyed the several hour reprieve from being on the receiving end of my wrath.

Six Flags stuff up next. Ciao for now!

Apr 112021

I have always been a super emotional person, for example, if I have no choice but to return a cart to an empty stall, I will dwell on it for hours, feeling SO BAD that I left an INANIMATE OBJECT alone in a parking lot, never mind the fact that other carts probably joined it before I even pulled out of the parking lot. I’m just super sensitive I guess – but then I can also be super callous and uncaring toward people so welcome to my contrary universe.

However, I find that it’s definitely getting worse as I age. I woke up Thursday morning to what I anticipated to just be a normal day. I was working late shift, so I had some time in the morning to take a walk, read a little, watch some coaster videos on YouTube, etc. While I was doing the latter, I heard my neighbor Ruth call out, “Yinz guys cutting down that tree?” and I looked outside to see this piece of shit truck blocking the entrance to the church lot across from my house:

And oh yes, they were preparing to cut down that big, glorious, grandfatherly tree you see pictured to the right. This is a tree that I have spent the last 20 years of my life admiring in the spring, summer and fall (and ignoring in the winter, lol). I have taken pictures of Chooch next to that tree. Hid from Henry behind that tree. JUST THAT MORNING I WAS WAVING TO BUDDY THE SQUIRREL AS HE SAT IN THAT TREE!!!

Something in me snapped and I just lost my shit. I tried calling Henry multiple times but he didn’t answer so I proceeded to text him: 911!!! When he finally called me back in a panic, I straight up wailed, “HENRY THEY’RE CUTTING DOWN THAT TREEEEEEEEEE” and then I started SOBBING and couldn’t finish because my throat was doing that EMOTIONAL WOMAN BREAKING DOWN constricting thing.

I eventually managed to gurgle out, “Gary and Sons, whoever the fuck THEY are!” when Henry asked me WHO WAS CUTTING DOWN THE TREE.

Then he of course started to White Knight them, must be hard carrying around the weight of all that CHAIN MAIL constantly, isn’t it Henry?

“Well, they’re only doing what they were paid to do. It’s probably rotted,” he said in the calm tone of a white man who does not get bothered by anything because the world is his motherfucking oyster.

“NO YOU’RE ROTTED!” I cried and hung up.

Then I started pacing wildly. What could I do?! There must be something! Run across the street and throw my arms around the trunk in defense?! The one guy had a chainsaw and I did not want to get close to that (haunted house flashbacks) so instead I kept storming out onto the front porch and shooting them my patented DISGUSTED SCOWLS while flipping them off. But all the while, I could NOT stop crying. I’m not sure if this was something bigger, maybe I was subconsciously holding onto to some shit that needed purged by way of my tear ducts, or maybe I just really am the president of the Tree Huggers Club, but I was a legit MESS that morning. As they were packing up their forestry murder kit, I went out to get the mail and said loudly, “OH YEAH THAT LOOKS REAL FRUCKING GREAT. ASSHOLES!” They all turned and looked at me and I glared at them but they sadly didn’t burst into flames so I guess I am losing my touch.

I had a video meeting that afternoon at work and I was STILL doing the post-cry sniffle-shudder right before it started but luckily I am ace at smiling my way through this shit but you know how after you cry really hard for an extended amount of time, your face feels so heavy and swollen? Yeah, I had that, bigly. My head was THROBBING through the whole meeting and when it was my turn to talk, I very nearly almost blurted out SOME ASSHOLES CUT DOWN A TREE TODAY AND I’M SAD but I held it together and instead just talked about my squirrel obsession – was that really the less crazy route though? Maybe.

We drove past GARY AND SONS (I almost left them a terrible Google review but I had no energy left after all that crying) which is apparently run out of a house on the other side of the church WHERE THEY JUST FELLED THE TREE, and OF FUCKING COURSE they have a giant Trump 2020 flag proudly flying at full staff in their junk yard.

Fuck you, Gary, and your shit-eating sons, too.

Side note: this is the same tree that was damaged in a storm last summer, which led to Henry and HNC getting to be traffic-directing HEROES.

In addition to this TRULY TERRIBLE TALE OF TREESON (??), I was also angry because Henry got his first vaccination on Tuesday. I mean, don’t get me wrong, I was thrilled that we are now both halfway to some semblance of immunity & normalcy, but his next shot is scheduled for two days BEFORE MY NEXT ONE, even though I got my first one the week before!! I was SO ANGRY about this that I sent an angry text to my work group chat – three of got the first shot at the same vaccination site, a day apart. Amber replied and said that for some reason, we were all scheduled to come back in 4 weeks instead of 3, even though we all got the Pfizer one. Then Nate said that his wife was also curious about this so she looked it up and they did it this way for “logistical reasons,” whatever that means and look, I know I should just be happy that I was able to get the damn vaccine IN THE FIRST PLACE but I am super competitive with Henry and this feels like TOTAL INJUSTICE.

When he came home that day, I was still very mad and pretended like I was going to punch him on his vaccine-spot, and that is when I noticed that not only is he going to be fully vaccinated TWO DAYS BEFORE ME, he also got a WONDER WOMAN BANDAID ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING?!!? All I got was some weird circular window sticker thing!!

What a fucking week.

Mar 232021


The other day, I had this blast-from-the-past memory of biting some bitch on the face. I was pretty sure, like 90% positive, that this was a real event but still decided to text my mom to confirm. And yes, it’s true: when I was 3 or 4 and we lived in my step-dad’s house in Castle Shannon (HATED LIVING THERE*), I bit the little blond-haired bitch that lived next door to us and luckily it was not Connie, who was a girl I was actually friends with (there is a picture of us both in overalls, sitting with my step-dad at a picnic table in his backyard, and we actually look like we could be sisters).

*(For some reason, my dad had a blue lightbulb in the light at the top of the steps and there have been numerous times over the years when a light of that same shade has triggered me. My mom started dating my step-dad real soon after my birth dad died and I think even though I was still so young, moving into his house was still a big upheaval for me and I just never felt comfortable there. NOT EVEN WHEN CONNIE TAUGHT ME HOW TO MAKE MUD PIES. I’m really getting side-tracked here.)

Back to the bite:

My mom can’t remember the girl’s name, but she is certain I bit her face because she dared to do something to my beloved stuffed dog, Purple. (To this day, YOU DO NOT FUCK WITH MY PURPLE, OK.) Because this was back in 1983, life went on with nary a Go Fund Me or passive aggressive Facebook post. Probably our moms yelled at each other over a fence for a minute and then went back in their kitchens in time to pull out the pot roast.


My mom mentioned that my victim also had an older brother and something inside me snapped.

“WERE THESE THE SAME KIDS THAT LEFT ME TO DIE IN THEIR TREEHOUSE?” I asked my mom AND SHE SAID YES. OMG you guys I think about these motherfuckers a lot because I am still high-key afraid of heights because of them!! One time I was at a playground with Chooch and I became paralyzed with fear after I climbed up on some higher level and then needed to climb back down AND I LITERALLY COULDN’T.

I mean, obviously I eventually did. But it took a bunch of taunting kids to push me over the ledge (like, literally).

Oh shit, I am so glad that I bit that bitch’s face. I bet if she has kids now, they’re real big dicks.

So I was telling Henry about this biting incident and he was like, “Yeah that doesn’t surprise me at all” and I had the audacity to ask why. He gave me A Look while projecting a reel of “me biting Henry” moments into the space between us. I CAN’T HELP IT, IT’S MY REFLEX OK I START CHOMPING LIKE A ZOMBIE. I bit his stomach the other night actually. We weren’t even doing anything, just watching TV and for some reason, my inner bully was like “MUST BITE HIS STOMACH” so I did.

Recently, he accidentally kicked Drew when he was walking through the kitchen and I was like I WILL AVENGE YOU, DREW so I got on my hands and knees and tried to bite Henry’s calves while he was cooking and he was like WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU STOP IT and I was like NO I HAVE TO DO THIS FOR DREW and he was like SHE’S NOT EVEN LOOKING!!

Wow, now that I’m typing this all out, it occurs to me that maybe I have a problem.


The other night, I was changing into my PJs when Henry yelled OMG WHAT IS THAT. Naturally, I started to panic, wondering if my Devil tail was now visible to human eyes. “What?!?” I screamed, trying to look at myself over my shoulder.

“ON YOUR LEGS!!!” Henry yelled, coming closer to inspect. I’m starting to wonder if he’s found cancerous moles on me or something, and he was getting more concerned the more he examined me. “You have circles all over your skin. Are these….burns?”

And then it all made sense, and I started laughing. “Oh! It’s probably from the heating pad. I sit on it while I’m working.”


“Yeah, because I’m cold and it keeps me warm.” Um, le duh, amirite?

“You sit on that all day??” he asked. “Do you realize how hot that is?” Then he looked at the circles again and yelled, “THESE ARE BURNS, ERIN!”

I dunno why but this cracked me up a lot. The heating pad has these circle thingies on it and now my butt and thighs do, too.


Gotta love fan-made videos!

This song has been in my head for weeks. Wonho has quickly become one of my faves. OH TWIST MY ARM, here’s another song from his new album!

(I actually hate the word “bop” and prefer “jam” but FOR THE SAKE OF BLOG POST NAMING CONVENTIONS, I went there.)

Aug 012020

Ughhhhhhhh. Full disclosure, I have been off-and-on throwing bitch-ass tantrums about this since my actual birthday on July 30th. Like, I could say something Pollyanna-esque such as: Henry and I both had the day off work so I got to spend time with him and Chooch and in the end that’s all that matters…

And ok deep down that’s true and I KNOW it’s true and five years from now I’ll look back on this birthday and think “Well, Covid canceled my plans and I was stuck at home but that’s ok because I was in good health—” OH STFU FUTURE ERIN you know damn well you’re gonna be recounting in your head then list of people who forgot your birthday and the things Henry COULDA done but DIDNT do because while he is great in many ways, sweet surprises and planned-out activities are not his strong point and yeah he spent the day working on projects around the house at my direction but it would have been nice if he was like “Get in the car! We’re having a picnic in the wilderness!” or something like that I don’t know!

But I know in the Other Deep Down that anything he would have suggested would never have been enough because it always goes back to the fact that I miss my Pappap on this day more than ever and how do you compete with the greatness that was John Stonick? I mean, really.

My childhood best friend texted me on my birthday and said “wish we were swimming in your pappap’s pool today” because she knows. Christy knows.

So instead of eating the omelette Henry made me for breakfast, I made myself toast using the heels of the bread because that was all that was left of the loaf and what a perfect symbol for the day, and then I salted it with my tears and ate it with my lip protruded.

We went back and forth like this all day. It had its good parts though.

We got take out from Green Pepper for dinner. I really wanted mul naengmyeon, which is a Korean cold buckwheat noodle dish and Green Pepper is the only korean restaurant around that had it on their menu.

(Last year on my birthday, I was having vegan naengmyeon in Insadong, I’m not crying, you’re crying, oh wait your tears are from rolling your eyes so hard that you hurt yourself.)

Of course, because it was my birthday and nothing goes right on my birthday, it ended up being more of a “bibim” naengmyeon which means it’s mixed up in a sauce (gochujang) and that was OK but the noodles were definitely not buckwheat and it just wasn’t what I wanted even though it was still good. Also, they charge extra for kimchi (???) and are super skimpy with it too. My noodles cost like $13 which is hilarious because in Korea it would have been like $5 or $6 maybe even less but whatever America sucks.

I would also like to point out that jamming your chopsticks vertically into a bowl of rice, a la Chooch up there, is extremely BAD FORM in Japan! I believe it has something to do with symbolizing death? I’m not sure if any other Asian cultures have anything similar to this so it’s probably best to just never stick your chopsticks in bowls of rice, as a rule of thumb. Look at my blog being educational! Now if only I could start proof-reading like the old days.

Ignore the mystery stain on the non-table cloth, but here I am trying to be natural, lol.

I cropped this photo when I posted it on Instagram because the way the shirt is laying, it looks like my boobs are super-droopy?! I swear to god that’s just the shirt!

I do love that shirt, btw. I wore it especially for my “birthday dinner” since I pretty much have had no reason to wear anything other than band t-shirts and yoga pants over the last 4 months.

I chose a matcha cake from Sumi’s, and it was honestly the best part of the day. Even Henry, who doesn’t like green tea, thought it was just lovely.

It even had a tiny bit of pat (sweet red bean) in it! Chooch immediately picked it out of his slice when I mentioned it, so I should have just kept my mouth shut.

So yeah, it wasn’t the greatest birthday but I can definitely confirm that I have much worse (like my 21st birthday where my friends tried to have me 302d because I was suicidal/losing my motherfucking mind – that was a good one). I would have much rather been in the midst of the amusement park extravaganza that I planned for myself but at least I made it to 41, blah blah blah, hashtag blessed, etc.

At the time of this blogging, I have spent the last three days pouting and having mood swings and being nostalgic and ungrateful, so when I hit “publish,” that means I have to officially walk away from this year’s birthday and move on with my damn life, lol. Jesus, I hate myself.

Mar 082020

Here are some photos from last Sunday before I got sick.

We had decided to kick off Henry’s Coffee Corner again (this ship started to sink before it even left the dock, let’s be real here), so he chose Carnegie Coffee, which is in…you know, Carnegie. Not something I would have picked but OK.

I never bothered to take any pictures because we got there at 1:42 and were met with a sign on the door that said they were closing at 2 for a private event so that really lit a fire under our collective asses. I wanted to just go somewhere else, because I had a book under my arm and would have liked to have sat down and read a chapter but cook on, Carnegie Coffee.

It seemed comfortable enough inside – ample seating that extended to a second floor, and you know how much seating means to me. But he staff was unsmiling, and then Henry had a weird interaction with some weird-ass who came up to him and asked if we were in line. We were, in fact, in line, but the guy said, “Oh, because the line is usually over there” and pointed to the other side of the column we were standing next to. Really buddy. Sorry we’re not fucking regulars in your dumb townie cafe.

So that really set off Henry and then I was secondhand mad about it too, especially when the d-bag actually went over to the right side of the column and stood there, like wow, you’re really sticking it to us, Line-Standing Warrior.

I got a vanilla rose latte. It was fine, but now I associate it with the stomach flu, so that’s great. Chooch got hot chocolate. Henry got iced coffee I think, who can be sure. That stringent line stander got freakin’ hot tea because of course he did. He probably took it back to his table to daintily slurp while carousing Craigslist for, I don’t know, 1950s dinghies.


Then we got our drinks and left because god forbid, 2:00pm event.

It was a decent enough day, weather-wise, so we decided to take a stroll, much to Chooch’s chagrin because I guess he had important things to attend to at home? We were in the same area where Janna and I went to see that play, Mumburger, last year, so we scoped out the posters for upcoming shows for that little theater and Henry and Chooch seemed moderately interested in maybe possibly attending a future show, so we’ll see if we can shoot some culture up Henry’s butt after all.

I got to see some churches and Chooch pet copious amounts of dogs (lol, actually just 2).

Chooch was really unimpressed with both churches. OK DAMIEN.

A thing we saw.

Then we went to Fresh Thyme (Henry and Chooch love this damn market and I’m just like, OK it’s still boring) and I washed my hands there twice and lubed up with hand sanitizer, came home and started to watch Knives Out with them and then 35 minutes into I excused myself to tend to an Olympian Vomiting Event which, on a scale from Hipster After a Bloody Mary Bar Brunch to Regan’s Pea Soup, I would rate myself a solid Carnival Ride Puking Scene From “Problem Child.”

Image result for problem child puke scene gif

Really looking forward to a better Sunday today!

Mar 062020
  1. You Dropped Something

We had to go to Chooch’s new school for an information session on Tuesday where we learned that basically his high school is a College Lite and I had mild panic attacks listening to the student ambassadors talk about course loads and declaring your focus, and this is also how I found out secondhand that Chooch scored a 99% on the PSATs, which I learnt when I overheard him telling his friend’s mom, so that was great.

During the information session, while we were looking at slides and listening to the very young and energetic principal talk, a little girl two rows in front of me was pulling on a beaded bracelet and it snapped, sending fake gemstones scattering along the floor. Her older sister, presumably another future student of this school, helped her picked them up, but she missed two.

There was a boy in the seat behind her, and he tapped her on the back. I thought he was going to point out the forgotten jewels, but instead he was just handing her a paper that floated off her chair while she was assisting her little sister in gem retrieval. I wanted to lean forward and whisper, “YOU FORGOT SOME” but there was never a good moment. So I sat there and stared at them, feeling more and more anxious about it as the presentation went on.

Finally, it was over and everyone started to stand up to leave. The mom of the girls was sitting there, still, so I tapped her on the back. As she turned around, I said, “You dropped something,” and at that exact moment, the iced-whatever from Starbucks that was balancing on her lap toppled over, ice cubes clattering all over.

“Well, now I dropped another thing!” she said with a laugh BUT I DON’T THINK IT WAS A HUMOROUS LAUGH.

“Good job,” Henry muttered and I was like, “I DIDN’T MEAN FOR THAT TO HAPPEN!” I was just so concerned about those stupid gems and I didn’t want them to leave and realize they didn’t get them all. It could have been some meaningful bracelet!

“I doubt they would have given that kid anything of value,” Henry said and THAT IS NOT WHAT I MEAN, MEANING AND VALUE ARE NOT THE SAME.


2. Flippin’ Fun

If you’re here for the latest in the saga of Hot Naybor Chris and Slut Life, then, well, stay here. It’s getting RILL PETTY, you guys. Like, almost even too petty for the likes of me, and we all know I’m stuffed to the gills with that there ‘pett.’ HNC called Henry the other day and luckily I was home so I was able to hear the tale about how Slut Life left his car running in the driveway, so HNC went over and knocked on his door.

No answer.

HNC went in his house and got a beer, then sat on his porch to wait for Slut Life to emerge, but now Slut Life had shut the door!! (Sorry, I had to seek out Henry to fill in gaps of the story but Henry just admitted that he wasn’t really listening to the phone conversations; wow, much neighborly.) So HNC went over and kicked the door this time and now Slut Life answered.



But when HNC did Slut Life’s voice, he made it all high-pitched and whiny and I almost peed my pants.

*(There is a church across the street that allows us to park in their lot.)

Henry is so over this drama but I can’t get enough. And then I noticed two things the other day:

  • Slut Life put up a “privacy curtain” on the side of his porch, presumably to block out HNC’s side of the house, but it’s basically just a window blind and it got all torn up and twisted in today’s wind storm.
  • HNC’s wife has one of those yard banner stakes in the ground next to their sidewalk and she had a banner hanging for every fucking holiday. Well, now Slut Life has one on his side of the yard and it says FLIPPIN’ FUN. WHY IS THIS SO FUNNY TO ME.


I missed these boys!!

4. Exciting Journal Page Showing

I thought it would be fun to grab an old journal, open to a random page, and take a picture to share a page of my past with you provided that it’s not one of the pages where I drew a map to the buried body, etc. So for today, you get this one, which is ironic because I was just watching Finch videos last weekend, I guess because I had on an Armor For Sleep playlist on YouTube since I was so excited about buying tickets for their anniversary tour, and Finch is just a natural progression from there.

Anyway, here’s a page from 2003:

Also, I have vague memories of that gas mask thing, which present themselves every now and then in conversation but it started to become one of those things where I was like, “Did I dream that? Did I really do it?”

I wonder what I bought with the $50. Probably more CDs to join Finch.

5. Lunch Break Tackle

Wednesday afternoon, (good lord I couldn’t remember how to spell ‘after’ and kept trying to get away with ‘aftner’) I was doing my thang, on the phone with Hank-a-lank, walking down the street alongside of the Benedum Center. I was just about to cross by the entrance to the alleyway where the buses and trucks park to unload for the shows at the Benedum. We call it “Cellphone Disco” alley because there’s this weird red LED thing with a sign above it that says Cell Phone Disco. It’s like, art. You know how that is. Just look, don’t ask.

Anyway, I’m just about to step off the curb to cross in front of the alley when I get body-slammed out of the blue by the backside of some youngish guy who had come tearing out of the alley. He had hit the ground right before me and did a weird spin in the air, which is how he ended up hitting me with his back.

At this point, my gut instinct, I’m sorry, was to scream my fucking face off. It was my best haunted house scream. The quintessential “where’s my Scream Queen crown” shriek. The IS SHE SEEING TAEMIN FOR THE FIRST TIME OR BEING STUCK WITH A CATTLE PROD??? wail.

Time stood still.

My perpetrator was now spinning around to face me. He clasped both hands on my upper arms, maybe to comfort me, but probably just to regain his balance. “Sorry,” he panted, face all red from the, the what? The chase? Was he being chased? Because after this strange 1/2 second of intense eye contact, he spun around and took off down the sidewalk, in the direction where I had just come.

“What the fuck was that?” Henry asked slowly. And now I was laughing. Like, cracking up. Adrenaline, I guess? The relief that it could have been something fatal and it wasn’t, it was just some harmless guy (or was he?! I MEAN WHY WAS HE WAS RUNNING HE DIDN’T LOOK LIKE A JOGGER) he essentially provided me with the most human contact I’ve received outside of the house in…weeks? Months? When was the last time someone touched me!? I DO NOT EVEN KNOW.

Meanwhile, not one single motherfucker on that street stopped to see if I was OK. Seriously. Not even a curious rubberneck, a lookie-loo. My scream was traveling down that block, too. STRONG ECHO.

But man, I sure did send the pigeons flying.

Anyway, I put a moratorium on the walk for that day after nearly getting tackled to the dirty street by some stranger, so I circled back around and headed back to work. And then, a block away, I SAW HIM AGAIN. He too had circled back around, but the opposite way, so now we were walking (yes, now he was walking, and looking extremely winded) toward each other. I tried to get a stealth-shot, but it came out blurry since I was moving.

My would-be assailant (far-left), cats & dogs:


[ETA: An hour after I posted this, Henry went to the store (of course). He just came home and reported that Slut Life took down his wind-mangled privacy curtain and threw it into a garbage can on his porch. Things move fast around here! WHAT WILL HAPPEN NEXT, ONLY TIME WILL TELL.]

Feb 252020

I don’t have too much to say about this past weekend. It was a….weekend. Not terribly exciting, but definitely not terribly…terrible either. Henry pissed me off Saturday morning on our walk to the post office though because I started to recount all of the things I have been asking him to do around the house and how he has done none of these things and then I got mad because DO NOT TURN ME INTO A NAG, MOTHERFUCKER. And then there were these two old ladies walking in front of us and I couldn’t get around them so I was stuck walking in between them and Henry and it was really awkward and I was trying to contain my psycho-level anger.

Once I finally managed to blow past those old ladies, I had just stepped onto Brookline Boulevard right before some older man who stopped to pick up a dollar on the sidewalk outside of the Teen Center and in my head I was screaming THAT COULD HAVE BEEN MY DOLLAR IF THOSE FUCKING LADIES HADN’T HELD ME BACK, FUCCCCKKKKK.

Henry is lucky that the library is just on the next block from the post office, so I went there while he was in the post office and perusing the stacks really brought down my heart rate. They didn’t have any of the books I had requested yet but I ended up grabbing one that my favorite BookTuber talks about a lot even though it’s a YA Fantasy/Supernatural, leave me alone, OK.

When I left the library, Henry was coming out of the bakery and handed me a cookie. Usually, he gets two peanut butter and two chocolate cookies. “I only had a dollar on me, so I could only get two cookies,” he said, after I was like WHERE IS MY SECOND COOKIE.


God, that sounded like we live like peasants.

Then I ate lunch while watching YouTube videos about books. “She organizes her book shelf by color? I hate her,” Henry spat all judgmentally but to his credit, she really was pretty annoying. Alphabetization or GTFO, am I right?

Later, Henry dropped me off at Panera for my weekly meet-up with Jiyong, and then he went to the Asian market to get ingredients for banchan. My Korean lesson was fine, but Panera was extremely crowded for some reason and only one cashier was working so we had to stand in line forever, and then I had to stand and wait in another line for my chai latte, and some Spicolli-type kid was like, “I like your shirt.”

“Thanks!” I said too-eagerly because a younger guy was paying attention to me, hooray.

“Yeah,” he said in a surfer-y tone.

My “shirt” was a pink sweater with sheep on it, one of which is black, so I was able to use it as an example of an English idiom later in the afternoon because yes, I actually teach Jiyong English crap sometimes too!

But before that could happen, I had to continue waiting for my chai. Why they couldn’t give me a buzzer thing for that, I have no idea, but I ended up standing there for at least 8 minutes, most of which were devoted to feigning interest in this strange old lady’s rant about how Door Dash ruins everything, and how she owns a pizza shop in Plum and blatantly refused to sign up for Door Dash but then she started getting Door Dash orders and was like WTF and she called them and said, “REMOVE MY PIZZA SHOP FROM THIS SERVICE I DID NOT SIGN UP FOR THIS” and they told her that someone clearly did and she was like, “WTF” and then she started getting complaints because Door Dash was delivering way farther than her normal jurisdiction so customers were getting cold pizza, or the cheese was sliding because these Door Dash drivers weren’t her actual drivers and now she’s getting bad reviews and it IS DOOR DASH’S FAULT.

“Wow, I never thought about that,” I mumbled, literally not giving a single shit about this and then my chai latte was finally put on the counter so I just walked right out of the conversation while she was still talking, I am not very people-y but somehow, strangers always want to talk me up and I just don’t know what else to do since my resting bitch face and standoffish vibes are clearly not strong enough, so I guess my next step is to stand in a corner flicking a switchblade.

By the time I found Jiyong in the bowels of the Panera dining area, my face was flushed and I was sweating. Then I pulled out my textbooks and a lipstick fell out with them and rolled across the floor so I had to chase it, and then when I picked up my pencil, my grip was too lax and I flung it over my shoulder, so that was how my lesson started, aren’t you sad you’re not teaching me things too?

There was this one word in our lesson that I was tying my tongues in knots trying to pronounce, and of course it means “I forgot” which is a really important word that I should know since I’m always forgetting my vocabulary, and Jiyong kept making me repeat one of the sounds over and over and FOR SURE people were spectating this and I was like “IGNORE THEM IGNORE THEM IGNORE” but then I worried that I sounded like I needed medical attention, but luckily, no one rushed over to see if I needed CPR or whatever.

Later that night though, for the hell of it, I opened up my Naver app (basically the Korean google), tapped the microphone icon, took a deep breath and spoke into it.


I excitedly sent it to Jiyong and she was excited for me and I hope she patted herself on the back because she is really making me work for this!

Then Chef Henri made vegan Korean chicken for dinner and we feasted like wangs (that’s “king” in Korean!).

Sunday was a real laid-back, no plans, let’s buy Erin new clothes, kind of day. Sometimes you need a day like that, you know? It was super-relaxing and I snagged a mound of clothes from the clearance racks at H&M, which is the only store I ever have success when it comes to sale items. I know so many people who find the cutest things for cheap at TJ Max and Marshalls, but HOW?! I walk in, get super angry, and walk right back out. I need to know the secret. Should I self-medicate beforehand?! Is that the trick??

Well, H&M will just have to be my go-to for cheap clothes until I find the will to look up “how to shop at TJ Max” on YouTube. Because you fucking know there are videos for that shit.

Let’s see, Chooch and I fought on Sunday about mechanical pencils because I told him that I learned the word for it in Korean (phonetically, it’s “sharp” pencil but the Korean pronunciation is “sha-pu” – Jiyong told me they call it that because literally the lead is sharp and my mind was blown). Then I started complaining about how I have to use Chooch’s mechanical pencils for my Korean lessons and they are so crappy and cheap so he was like THEN DON’T USE MY PENCILS!!! And I said that’s fine, because Henry is going to buy me a good mechanical pencil, and um, this really set Chooch off for some reason, lol.

“WTF SHE gets a GOOD one now!? I asked you to get ME good ones and you said no!” Chooch cried.

“Yeah, because you always give your pencils away to your dumb friends!” Henry yelled back, defensively, so then they started fighting over that and I sat back an waited to get tagged back in.

Ah, the Murder House.

Speaking of Murder Houses, the hotel Henry booked for the first night of our trip is super creepy, on a German hillside in the middle of nowhere, basking in its Bavarian-ness. I’m super stoked about it. Surely someone has been murdered there.


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.


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.

Feb 172020

Well, here I am, on a Monday, being all wistful and internally whiny that the weekend is over. For me, it’s not even the fact that I have to go back to work, because my job is not bad; it’s not even waking up early and getting ready for work that sours my mood. It’s literally the whole trolley-aspect of it all. Will it be crowded? Will it come late? Will it get stuck somewhere and we’ll just sit and rot because the driver won’t have the decency to get on his dumb little speaker-thing and let those of us in the second car know what the fuck is going on? Will Aggressive Throat Clearer sit near me? Will there be noxious piss-aromas that eventually will get to my head and I’ll start to be convinced that the stench is coming from myself?

It’s all of these dumb little things that make me dread Mondays. By Tuesday, I’m over it. But Mondays, man. Mondays.

Let’s dive into the weekend memory pool, shall we?

During Saturday’s meet-up with Jiyong, I learned the word for “the couple next door,” which is 옆집부부. (yeopjip bubu)

So, of course I became obsessed with it because it’s so fun to say, and I happily blew through the recitations. This is what I am going to call Blake & Haley, and Hot Naybor Chris and his wife from now on.

Meanwhile, Jiyong said, “Shall we record you?” as she reached for her phone. I freaked out and yelled NO! which made her fall into the wall laughing. I’m glad my Korean-infant speak is so amusing to her, lol.

I always feel so inspired by the time our Saturday session is finished. I feel a bit more confident now, especially with pronunciation, and she said that my vocabulary is really good. I just need to buckle down and start practicing verb conjugations, because that’s where I’m always like, “CAN I PHONE A FRIEND.”

It’s funny though, because even though we have been meeting now, regularly, for nearly a year, I still get a little stressed out on Saturday mornings knowing that I have to, OMG, do work. The pressure! But then when I either already know something in that day’s lesson, or I figure it out on my own, or she gives me a better explanation for something I’ve been struggling with and it’s like a code has been cracked in my brain…it just makes it SO REWARDING.

That night, we ordered pizza and did some vacation planning, which is my favorite thing to do except that I’m the only one in the house who feels that way: Henry is just stressed and annoyed because he has to figure out the logistics, so there’s no fun in it for him; and Chooch is never really excited until it’s the day before we’re leaving. So that’s cool. Then Henry left around 8:30pm to weep and soul-scream in the anonymity of a dark parking lot (ie. he went grocery shopping, his escape). Lately, he’s been obsessed with Fresh Thyme, and that’s OK with me because he comes home every time with fresh peanut butter, and that is basically my fuel.

Anyway, re: vacation planning, I try not to put too much time and effort into this stuff until we’re 100% sure we’re going and have booked the flights, because god only knows. I fought really hard for this trip though, and have been obsessively hoarding money in our vacation account. I think I’m going through an early midlife crisis, maybe because Henry is already so old (haha), where I am always in this frozen state of panic, feeling like I’m running of time to do things and I am frantic to get it all in. I am so tightly-wound. This is why I take so many walks!

Sunday was glorious! I had breakfast with Jeannie and Wendy at Pamela’s. When I left the house that morning, I saw an older couple walking up the sidewalk to Blake’s house so I started to say good morning and then realized one of the people was Blake’s mom, a/k/a Henry’s ex, and she had this determined “KEEP LOOKING STRAIGHT AHEAD” vibe to her walk, so I stopped at “good” and went about my merry way, lol. Nothing like a little spot of awkwardness first thing in the morn’.

It’s been awhile since we managed to successfully plan a Pamela’s meetup, so this was much-needed for all of us. I was really mad though because I arrived early as usual and decided that I would just sit in the car for a bit and read some of my book because I was so close to finishing it and it was a GOOD ONE (“Pretty Girls” by Karen Slaughter, highly recommend). At 8:58, I started walking down to Pamela’s just as Wendy and Summer were getting out of the car. I ended up walking in right behind them, and Jeannie was already there, saving a table for us. So then it was all, “OH MY GOD, ERIN WAS THE LAST ONE HERE!” because usually I’m early, Jeannie is on time, and Wendy is woefully late.

I got super up-in-arms about this and yelled, “I’ve been here since 8:45 but I was in my car reading!” and then it turned into, “IT DOESN’T COUNT IF YOU’RE NOT INSIDE, AT THE TABLE” so fine, I was “late” I guess, whatever!

Jeannie told me that she had a dream where she was at my wedding reception (“That is a dream,” I interjected) which was apparently at an amusement park I had rented out, so did I marry a Disney heir or what?! She said in lieu of seating arrangements at tables, I had assigned everyone  to certain rides, and there were challenges, which Jeannie begrudgingly did ONLY because it was for my wedding, lol. She said everyone was having a lot of fun and then I got sad because this needs to be a reality but I don’t think I’d be able to rent  out anything grander than like, Fun Fore All, as it stands.

I got an omelet and then spent most of the time low-key coveting Summer’s strawberry and chocolate chip waffle. I’m just never satisfied!

Then we went to Oakland because Henry to drop something off at an Amazon Prime thing so I was like OOOOH WE CAN GO TO THE GOOD LIBRARY and Henry was like yay.

You may have been there through the roller skating phase. The Jonny Craig obsession. The succulent infatuation. Well, please join me now for the library addiction.

(I didn’t include Korea in the above list because it’s not a phase, it’s who I am. Back off.)

There were three specific books on my “want to read” list that I knew were available at this branch, so I scooped those up because I know how to find books now, and then on the way to check them out, I found another one that I had requested in the beginning of January but was never sent to me, so I HAVE THAT ONE NOW TOO. I used to think libraries were dumb! They are not dumb! They have helped me complete 63% of my reading challenge and it’s only midway through February, LET’S GO. (I hate when the kids say that.)

On the way out, Henry pushed the door open and it got caught on the corner of a rug in the vestibule, so then the door got stuck and the girl behind Henry nearly slammed into him because it all happened so fast and he was struggling to fix the rug and the girl had to struggle to get around him, AND THEN HE JUST LEFT IT so the same thing happened to Chooch and me when we were trying to leave next and we were so angry I GUESS YOU HAD TO BE THERE but it was yet another time Papa H embarrassed us in public. Ugh.

After that, we went to Pink Box for Chinese breads and then Henry popped into a nearby Crazy Mocha to quench his newely-acquired cold brew thirst (you’re welcome) but they were out of cold brew and he had to just get a regular iced coffee so then he complained about it to us later but I’m sure he was all good-natured and pleasant to the barista: we always get his whiny side!

So, no Henry’s Coffee Corner this weekend, I know you’re really sad because who wouldn’t craze those insightful 350 word reviews he plonks out with his manly sausage-fingers?

The rest of the evening was very relaxing. Chooch watched dumb movies from  the 90s on Disney+, I read, and I can’t remember what Henry did. Boring stuff, I’m sure. Then I finished the book I was reading and cried about it and made Henry walk with me to the Brookline library even though it was 8pm and they were closed because I like to return my books immediately (see: tightly wound) and now I’m afraid to walk alone at night because I don’t want to get kidnapped and then put in a snuff film.

On that note: ciao for now, go braid a uni-brow.

Feb 102020

I guess technically, the weekend started when I logged off work at 8:30 on Friday night, so I can start this rip-roaring’ recap with The Tow Truck Incident.

Let me back up.

Hot Naybor Chris got a new neighbor on the other side of his duplex, I guess this was over the summer, maybe? Some single guy, looks to be around my age, and evidently used to be a bartender at this super trashy bar down the street that was known for having fights culminating into someone getting chucked through a window. That bar is closed now.

Anyway, I guess HNC and this guy hate each other and they’re all passive-aggressive about it. Most of it seems to revolve around our shared driveway, WHICH HAS BEEN A SOURCE OF DRAMA EVER SINCE I MOVED INTO THIS HOUSE IN 1999, so we never park our car down there. No thanks.

But this dude actually parks in the garage, which is amazing because the garages are so narrow, I can’t even imagine. One time, his garage door was opened and he accused HNC of doing it and HNC was like, “why would I want to go in your garage, don’t flatter yourself” and I guess the guy yells a lot in his house. I personally dislike him because he comes home around midnight every day and leaves his car running in  the driveway and his dumb bass wakes me up. YES, I AM AN ELDER. I hate bass unless it belongs to something I am personally listening to. One of my hugest pet peeves is when someone else’s bass permeates my walls. BIG NOPE ON THAT, PAL.

Sometimes he parks across the street in the church parking lot, but he has purposely been double-parking in HNC and his wife’s spots, which is kind of hilarious only because it’s not happening to me. Anyway, he came home early on Friday, noted the snow on the driveway, and parked in the parking lot instead. You know, like a real scholar. But then he came home later AND PARKED IN THE GARAGE, and then later that night, when he was unable to get his car back up the driveway (it’s a hill), he CALLED A TOWTRUCK at 10:30pm instead of just shoveling it!

“That’s someone who doesn’t know how to do anything for himself,” Henry said, watching from the window. “Like you.”

Yup. This is accurate.

Anyway, yeah. Fuck this new guy. He’s a Dumb.

On Saturday, Henry had a shitload of Valentines to make and didn’t get done in time for us to walk to the post office together, but I still needed to go to the library because I’m obsessed and there was a book available that I felt the need to check-out even though I have a TBR stack already here. Chooch came with me even though I embarrass him with my book-slut ways, and then afterward, he wanted to stop in Las Palmas – the local Mexican market which also has a super trendy taco cart out front that seasoned readers of Oh Honestly Erin might remember from the days when I had a taco cart boyfriend who mysteriously was replaced over the summer, yeah, you tell me.

Anyway, Chooch was jonesin’ for some Takis (do the kids in your area love those things? They have a cult following here in Brookline for some reason, I mean, they’re good but I wouldn’t go out of my way to get them?) and to no one in particular, I mused, “HMMM DO THEY HAVE A CREDIT CARD LIMIT HERE I BET THEY DO. WE SHOULD BUY MORE SHIT JUST IN CASE” because you know, whatever makes me feel better. I bought some crap but also these things which some people in my department actually like!

So I made a sign that says, “SOME PEOPLE LIKE THESE” and that encouraged others to try it, even though they’re mostly leery of the snacks behind my desk. Here is a summary of what people think they taste like:

  • animal crackers
  • Nilla wafers
  • lemon things
  • Twix

I started imagining eating a bowl of them with milk, like cereal, LIKE COOKIE CRISP. Maybe I’ll try that. Then I’ll tell you and you’ll be like, “BOO HOO I CANNOT FIND THESE GRAGEAS BALLS NEAR ME” and I’ll be like *wicked laugh / lightning from fingertips*

You know how that happens sometimes. The lightning just shoots right out.

Saturday night, Henry did kpop cardio with me and then I started a new book.

Wow, such a Saturday.

갑자기 일요일이야.

I felt extremely sluggish all day, like SOMEONE drugged me. Literally had a tough time holding up my eyelids so then I thought I was getting sick and Henry reminded me that I have felt on the cusp of some invisible illness for months and there is allegedly nothing wrong me OR IS THERE.

But! We had a coffee date with our pals Jessy and Tommy, whom we only see about twice a year because, you know, life; so I wasn’t about to cancel on them! We went to Generoasta in Warrendale, which Henry is supposed to review on his Coffee Corner but we’ll see how long this blog-writing streak lasts – it will probably end with last week’s review, haha. He sucks. WE DON’T WANT YOUR DUMB REVIEWS ON HERE ANYWAY, STUPID HENRY.

I have always really appreciated the fact that my friends have been so amazing to Chooch, from when he was a baby to now. He’s never shunned or put in the background because he’s a kid—all of my friends have always included him in conversations, and Tommy and Jessy are no exception. It always just feels like we’re a bunch of friends bullshitting and not two couples and that one kid that tags along…or whatever. I don’t know what I’m getting at. I have an imaginary illness, remember?

Jessy found another cafe for us to try so hopefully that happens sooner rather than later!

(Side note: I had a Cupid’s Bow or something? It was white chocolate & orange latte. It was good and not too syrupy, but I didn’t taste the orange and that hurt me deeply because I love orange flavoring and it’s not very common!)


We came home and I decided I want an orange for a snack. But while I was opening the orange, a corner of the peel went under my thumbnail and cut me and I was screaming, like LE HOLLERIN’. Chooch & Henry were like “who the fuck cuts themselves on an orange peel” and well, joke’s on them because this isn’t the first time this has happened to me.

None of them even tried to help me, so that’s real cool. I’m so fucking loved.

It wasn’t as bad as the time when I was like “how hard do I have to squeeze this Milkbone in my hand before it breaks, let’s try” & then it broke & left a gash across my palm and my mom was like bitch you best pray you don’t need stitches because I’m not taking you to the ER for that.
Aside from that, I watched Booktube videos (haha, kill me), exercised but I was too lethargic to do Jillian Michaels so I opted instead of a 20-minute Jessica Smith weights workout instead and then felt like a failure because I rarely skip a workout and Chooch was like, “But you still exercised though?” and this was after I thought he ran away/was kidnapped/stepped into a wrinkle in time but then I found him outside in the dark playing alone in the snow and it was kind of sad but he was like “WHAT I AM FINE OUT HERE ALONE, DON’T CRY FOR ME” and I was like, “Yeah you’re right bye” and shut the door because it was cold.
Speaking of playing in the snow, when I was working from home on Friday, we had a mini snowstorm and I spotted Blake and Calvin outside building a super pathetic snowman and then they went in the house so I was like, “Chooch look at how hideous that snowman is. You should get a pot of hot water and dump it on the snowman, put the fucker out of its misery. But knock on Blake’s window first and do it while Calvin is watching so he’ll cry HAHAHAHAHA” and you could tell Chooch was torn between being a good uncle to Calvin or crossing over to the dark side with his MOMMY, so then he compromised and decided he would go out there and leave Calvin’s snowman intact, but build a better one next to it and I was like, “OK fine I guess that’s moderately diabolical” but then when he went out there, Blake and Calvin came back out so then they all WORKED TOGETHER to build a snow fort.
Other than that, I started reading a new book and read Oscars update on Twitter and cheered for Parasite! What a victory for South Korea! Let the world STFU and watch, for Hanguk is the Bestguk. And now people keep wanting to talk to me about how much they loved this movie and I am so happy to listen! I had to laugh when Janna and I went to see Jo Jo Rabbit last weekend because they showed previews for Parasite and she was like, “I guess we will need to see that next” as if I hadn’t seen it months ago when it first came to a theater in my dumb city, lol.
Best fucking picture, can you even believe it. I’m crying again.
Image result for parasite oscars gif
(Fun fact: the actress in the middle, Lee Jung-eun, is in a bunch of dramas that Henry and I have loved and she is just a real treasure, you guys. A real fucking treasure. Watch Korean dramas. They are pure magic.)
(OMG this is still so surreal for me!)
Feb 082020

I have the day off from Korean studies, and as much as I love those weekly hangouts, I am secretly relieved that I don’t have to recite sentences over and over until my face feels like it’s splitting at the jaw. Sometimes, when it’s quiet, I hear myself saying, “여름에는,  너무 더와요. 그래서, 저는 여름을 싫어해요.” Which is a weird sentence to be thinking about in the dead of winter, with snow blanketing the ground, because it means, “In summer, it’s too hot. So, I hate summer.” When really I’m sitting over here doing witchy spells to bring summer to me but then I start thinking about climate change and I panic and then it’s like NEVERMIND, WINTER, YOU CAN STAY FOR THE ALLOTTED SEASONAL TIME, BUT NOT A SINGLE DAY MORE.

It was really nice on Monday though. Like, nearly 70 which is scary and I felt guilty for being so happy about it. But really, I wouldn’t mind the cold temps of winter so much if we could just get a fucking blue sky occasionally. I think I saw that in Pittsburgh last month, we had like 27 days of gray skies and rain. Fuck that shit.

The other day, my friend Lori was on the phone at work with a partner from Tokyo and it sounded, from my perspective, like a very joyous chat about music, and then when I heard Lori say, “Yes actually, I have heard of them, because one of the girls in our office is a super big kpop fan” so I shot my arms up and said, “That’s me” and while that was exciting in and of itself, the thing that I latched on to the hardest was that she referred dumb old 40-year-old me as “a girl” and not “some broad” or, you know, “lady.” Woo! Forever a girl!

I very rarely have pleasant phone calls with partners at work. Practice assistants are fine, I’ll talk to them like they’re one of the postal clerks I have moderate relationships with, but partners usually make my insides curl up and pour cement over whatever semblance of a personality I have left in this crap head of mine. In fact, I had one phone call last week that was so painful, I was actually shocked afterward to see on my phone log that the call was only 4.5 minutes long when I’m pretty sure it was actually an hour. So many painfully uncomfortable silences too. And he kept saying, “Ohhhhhkay” with subtle “you are a real stoop” undertones to them and I wanted to fucking flee the scene.

Speaking of personality and the postal clerks, I had to mail some orders the other day at work (Henry has been very diligent about mailing them for me lately so that I don’t have to lug bags stuffed with Valentines to work everyday, thanks Henry). There was a new, young woman clerk at the one post office, and I have never seen her before and judging by her extremely pleasant disposition, this must mean she’s a fresh one. Anyway, while I was at the counter, she said, “Oh, I love your necklace!” It was my oversized wooden sarcastic Conversation Hearts necklace, which I do have to agree is a very cool necklace, so I cheerfully thanked her as if the necklace was my own creation. Then she noticed my cactus phone case. “Oh, and I love your phone case too!” I laughed and said, “Yes, I do too!” because obviously I do, I bought it, after all. My people-skills, man.

Then, as I was taking my receipt from her, she squealed, “AND YOUR JACKET!” It was my cowprint jacket. “I can tell you have an AWESOME PERSONALITY!” and all I could do was giggle shyly and said, “I try.”

EXCEPT THAT I DON’T TRY. Literally, my personality, what’s left of it, hangs off my shoulders in soiled shreds these days. It’s all mangled and beaten and DON’T TALK TO ME.

Man, 20 years ago, though. My personality was FIRE 20 years ago.

I worked from home yesterday, and Chooch happened to have a snow day. I heard him call Henry at one point and ask when he was expected to come home. “Because she doesn’t want to make her own lunch. No, I’m not making lunch for her.” WOW. But yeah, that’s me. Non-cookin’ mom. Cook on, just don’t expect me to join.

Look. Drew’s friend saved her a seat. Drew has such nice friends. What a nice friend, you have, Drew.

I realized today that when I went to the library, that it was the first time I had left the house since Wednesday. I could never work from home every day. I would be ruined. My cats would start to hate me. What’s left of personality would petrify.

I really don’t have anything else earth-shattering to report. Our busy card-making season should be starting to wind down now since Valentine’s Day is less than a week away at this point. I’ll be happy to have a clean dining room table again and to not stress-fight with Henry over shipping labels and whatnot. I let him watch videos from one of the recent SuperM concerts the other night while we were packaging orders and he seemed very content. I always catch him smiling whenever Taemin is talking. It’s OK, Henry. You can admit it.

In other serial killer card news (actually though, the Golden Girls Valentines may have outsold the killer ones this year!), GG Allin’s brother came back and bought more cards off me, so I can now officially say that GG Allin’s brother is a return customer and that kind of makes me a little bit giddy.

Other than that, I have been severely depressed over this whole impeachment fail, the coronavirus, the wildfires, the world in general. Deciding to bury myself in books again was pretty much the best thing I could have done for myself. I’ll just be over here, blissfully unaware of the news from now on.

Cook on, mothercheffers. Cook the fuck on. I’m dun dun. So dun dun dun dun dun dun dun…

P.S. I just realized I haven’t eaten lunch yet and dumb Henry isn’t here,어떻게………………..:( Same boat as yesterday!! OMG I JUST RHYMED IN KOREAN AND ENGLISH, I’M A GENIUS.

Feb 042020

My weekend was pretty catastic, if we’re being super honest. The only thing separating me from a full-blown Cat Lady lifestyle is the fact that I don’t live alone and can’t knit.

Friday after work, I think Henry seriously considered leaving me, and at one point, he did run away to his ever-ready refuge, The Store. (Kuhn’s, Giant Eagle, Aldi, one of the Asian markets – the man loves his grocery store quiet time.)

[RELATED SIDE NOTE TO HENRY’S DOMESTICITY: My work friend Margie was just helping me MacGyver one of my bracelets with a paper clip because the elastic band has become too slack over the years. “Do you know how to sew?” she asked, and then quickly recovered by saying, “What I mean is, does Henry know how to sew?” Good save, Margie!]

I don’t know what started it but I invented this entire hyper-scenario, not in my head, but out loud for Henry to also enjoy, where my cats, Drew and Penelope, are entering the convent to be nuns. First, Henry scowled at me from his post at Card-Making Central, and then eventually just entirely left the house in exasperation after I yelled at Drew for calling one of her toy mice a “motherfucker” because there’s no swearing in the convent, God will strike you down, Drew. Yes, Drew, he’s the one who watches you from the cloud. No, Drew, that’s Ho-Ho*. I’m talking about GOD.

*(That’s what my cats call Santa.)

Then I changed their names to Sister Agnes Drew and Sister Mary Peen and later that night, while Henry was trying to sleep, I gently laid a white dishtowel on Penelope’s head so it looked like she was wearing whatever nun’s wear and then I was shaking the bed from all the laughing and Henry whispered, “Plz get help.”

I don’t know if he really whispered that. But probably. I worked from home on Thursday and Friday so that gave me A LOT of special time with the cats and excuse me if they’re my best friends and the only ones I CAN REALLY TALK TO, HENRY.


We walked to the post office with our bundle of Valentines and  then I went to the library to pick up the two books that were waiting for me because playing Library is my new favorite game ever. Henry was like, “What are books” and then we went to the bakery to get cookies to eat on the walk home because that’s how exciting we are. 

Later, I met Jiyong at Panera for Korean Time. I don’t mind Panera generally but the last several times, it’s been a real Yinzer circus which, I know may seem shocking, but is not conducive to the learning process. At least for me, anyway. It was the equivalent of trying to catch babies while reciting back sentences in Korean by memory. OK bad analogy because we all know I would never go out of my way to catch a baby.

As mentioned above, Jiyong does this new thing where she takes my book from me and makes me recite, from memory, the little story I just translated for that session. Now, this would be difficult for me to do in my mother tongue (not sure what that is, actually, and sometimes it does not seem to be english!) because my memory is not what it used to be, and now she wants me to do this in a language that I barely know. Cool, let’s do it. I love suffering in a Panera. 

Halfway through our study session, a Russian boxer arrived and took a seat at the table behind Jiyong. I know what you’re thinking, ‘wow, stereotype much, OHE?’. But look:

  • he had what sounded like a russian accent;
  • his face appeared squashed, like it’s been punched a lot over the years;
  • he was wearing a gray sweatshirt over a gray hoodie and gray sweatpants;
  • he was loud.

Russian boxer. Case closed. 

How was he loud, you ask? Because he saw someone he knew over yonder hills of sweeteners and coffee stirrers and he called out to this person in what sounded like a drunken bark, death bed cough, MAGA bray, and then that person came over to engage in a bro-hug next to our table and they spoke to each other in staccato grunts and Jiyong was coaxing me to start the next sentence and I’m like, “How is this not distracting you?!” and then Vladimir Knockoutkov sat back down behind Jiyong and proceeded to eat his Panera meal with the smackiest lips this side of the Kremlin. 

I could hear every single bite, every millisecond of mastication, every tongue-swipe of the lips. Oh Sister Mary Peen, I can fucking hear it right now in my head as I relive this tragic weekend moment. I am haunted. 

He, along with the family of 4 behind him who consistently dropped silverware on the floor and paced to and fro from the garbage can behind me back to their table, eventually left, but then there was this group of men having a meeting in the special, closed-door conference room thing next to us which was FINE, dandy even, until they began to emerge in pairs and sitting at a table next to us at which point interviews were conducted. 

I felt like I was on Silent Library. It was the worst and I kept whining to Jiyong about how I would be doing so much better if all these stoops weren’t distracting me and she gave me a polite, “Yeah sure” nod.


Came home. Ate dinner. Went to Kohl’s. Wow, life is exciting in the winter. 

Oh! But Saturday night was super…crunk? Lit? I dunno what word we’re using these days. I would say “daebak” if I actually had the confidence to speak the Korean I know, haha. Ugh. Anyway, I wanted to read one of the new books I scored from the library so I put on something for background noise that wouldn’t distract me. I chose this YouTube channel called Cream Heroes, which is so cute – it’s this lady in Korea who has 7 cats and is always, you know, doing cat things with them. After a while, I happened to glance over to my left and I noticed that Sister Agnes Drew was sitting on the wheelchair, intently watching these videos. Now, I have played these a lot in the past but she, as to my knowledge, has never given a single shit about it. But on this evening, she was enrapt. 


Bad quality, but I had to zoom in on her because that oaf otherwise known as Henry was sitting between us and totally in the way. I mean, she was into it for a good long while, I couldn’t believe it! I’ve put on cat-specific videos (fish, birds, etc) for both of them before and they haven’t cared. Maybe it’s the lady’s voice she likes too? She will probably learn Korean faster than me at this point. Sigh.


I let Henry choose which cafe to go to for Sunday Coffee, or whatever it is I’ve been calling it. Henry really seems to have taken a liking to cold brew so maybe cafe-hangs will actually be a consistent part of our routine!? Anyway, I had him review Steel Valley Roasters and you can read that here but true to form, it doesn’t say much.

We went to Many More Asian Market afterward and I was happy there.

I love that place.

I started a new book on Sunday – this one was about a possession which got me reminiscing about the time in high school when I desperately wanted to become possessed and I was actually very close to straight up devil worship for a brief period (oh, Erin and her phases) and I casually asked Henry if he ever wanted to be possessed too and the way he said NO, it was like it’s weird for someone to want to be possessed?!

 Meanwhile, Sister Mary Peen suddenly became interested in Cream Heroes too!

She eventually jumped up there and started swatting at the screen, so I guess she hates them. 

In the afternoon, Janna came over and we walked down the street to the Hollywood Theater, where we finally saw Jojo Rabbit! I feel bad because Janna texted me way back in August or September and was like WILL YOU GO SEE THIS WITH ME WHEN IT COMES OUT and I was like YES and then it came out in October and we never went because you really have to twist my arm  to get me to go to the theater, I’m such a weirdo about it. But I sincerely did want to see this! Then last week, Henry off-handedly said, “Jojo Rabbit is at the Hollywood now” because he knows that I will mostly only see a movie if it’s playing there because:

  • it’s convenient (a 5-minute walk from my house!)
  • it’s an old-school, historic one-screen theater with a balcony
    • I always sit in the balcony

So I asked Janna if she wanted to go and of course she said yes and it turns out Henry was telling me it was playing because he wanted to go see it with me but then I invited someone else and instead of just going with us anyway, he stayed home and pouted.

It’s fine. He had a lot of Valentines to make.

Anyway, I knew only the bare minimum about this movie, but Janna and I both loved What We Do In the Shadows and it’s the same guy etc etc Hitler, blah blah blah. So I expected it to be funny, and I expected to be slightly uncomfortable while laughing at the funny parts, but I didn’t realize it was going to slug me across the face like an emotional sledgehammer, holy fucking shit, I felt many feelings during this movie and I ugly-cried numerous times to the point where my body was shaking and I had to sit in the dark while the credits ran to make sure I was completely done crying before we could leave. 

Fantastic movie and for as much as I fucking LOVED Parasite, I think that maybe, possibly Jojo Rabbit was the better film THERE I SAID IT I’M SORRY KOREA I STILL LOVE YOU MOST.

Chooch was supposed to go see it with us and it’s extremely relevant to his interests (he is very into learning about Hitler not because he’s a neo-Nazi thank you but because he’s a budding history buff and was excited because he recently got to give a presentation at school about Hitler where he was able to say ‘syphilis’ and ‘prostitute’) but then he ditched us to go over some kid’s house TO PLAY FOOTBALL AND WATCH THE SUPERBOWL WHO IS THIS KID? I am so disappointed in him. I told Todd the next day at work that Chooch likes football now and Todd was like, “YESSSS! IT HAPPENED! THIS IS THE BEST THING EVER!” 


After the movie, I came home to the greeting card sweatshop and provided marginal assistance while paying more attention to the cats than a well-functioned human being probably should, but that’s OK BECAUSE THEY ARE MY BEST FRIENDS. 

And that’s what happened over the weekend. 

Jan 272020

I was asking for it Wednesday night when, while getting into bed, I said I wanted to listen to a goth Spotify playlist because I “hadn’t had a nightmare in a while.”

HOO BOY did that playlist ever deliver.

I don’t make a habit of dream journaling or whatever because who cares, but this one was so relevant, and also one of the most rattling nightmares I’ve had in years and it played on so many of my current fears, stressors, and insecurities.

Allllllll work-related.

And both involved WENDY, so I of course was spitting mad at her for approximately a day and a half. I had four days to cool down before finally telling her about the dreams today, so she should consider herself lucky that I spared the rod!

(I started doing Jillian Michaels’ Body Revolution again last week and she says something at one point in Workout 2 about never sparing the rod so I guess that’s been on my mind OK?!)

(What rod, though?!)

OK, Nightmare #1 is as follows:

I was in a meeting with one of the teams I belong to here, except that it looked like we were in a VFW hall instead of a conference room. There were long, folding tables set up in vertical rows so no one was facing the front of the room. At one point, Wendy, who is in charge of this particular team, called me out. Not like in a bad way, like she was pointing out a mistake I did or something, but rather, she was asking me to tell the room about something I had told her in a private sit-down we recently had, I guess it was an idea or suggestion. Except that I couldn’t remember, so I said, “Sorry, I’m drawing a blank” but she kept pushing me and at this point, there were dozens of eyes boring into my skin, which is now flaming hot from the boiling blood underneath, and I now notice that all of the managers and directors are in this meeting too, and they’re all looking at me with these disappointed frowns, some even look disgusted, and I am, at this point, like a scared mouse ready to gnaw off my own foot in order to escape this trap. And Wendy is STILL saying things like, “Come on, you remember…” while I’m beginning to ugly cry. It just kept dragging on and on, me stuttering and sounding like a fucking derelict, someone snapping in the background about how people need to come to meetings prepared, and then afterward, when Wendy tells me what the idea was (which she knew the whole time but just wanted me to say it!), someone overhears and sneers, “That’s a fucking stupid idea.”

I woke up because it felt like there was a woman leaning over top of my face, whispering.

And when I say I woke up, I mean that I shot upright in bed, hands clutching the comforter, freaking the FUCK out. My cat Penelope, who always sleeps in our bed, was like, “the fuck?!”

Then I couldn’t go back to sleep because I was so stressed out so I looked at my phone and of course the first thing I saw was the only bad feedback I have ever received on Etsy in the 13 years I’ve been using it, all because Henry made a careless printing mistake, and it was something that could have been easily resolved if the customer had just sent me a message instead of putting me on blast, so that was what I like to call to 4am Fun Times.

And then it was time for Nightmare #2.

I’m still at work. This time, I’m back in our department, and I need to talk to my co-worker Maggie, but when I get to her office, I see that Amber is in there. Rather than retreating and coming back later, I just…walk right in. No “knock knock!” or nothin’, I just barrel right the hell in there like I own the place and then I’m ACUTELY aware of the annoyance on Amber and Maggie’s faces but now it’s too late – I’m there, so I pretend to know what they’re talking about in order to contribute, and Amber has now morphed into Sandy who is about to show Maggie some new program or something and I inch closer to the monitor and say, “Oh, I should see this too because it’s relevant to my job” and they don’t even try to hide their eye rolls and sighs, and then Sandy is Amber again and has to leave so now it’s just Maggie and me and Maggie is PISSED because she can hear music and needs to know where it’s coming from, so I turn and realize that it’s my phone, cactus case and all, sitting on her credenza playing 80s music outright because in real life, back in the safety of my actual bedroom, my Spotify playlist has gone from goth to 80s pop and Debbie Gibson, fucking DEBORAH GIBSON, has filtered into my gooey dream-brain and Dream Erin is now panicking because she apparently walked all the way through the department to Maggie’s office, with Spotify blasting out of her phone which is something Awake Erin would never do because Awake Erin is always  trying to be quiet and go unnoticed while at work.

Wendy’s back. She comes into Maggie’s office and fetches me and we’re walking together now to the elevator bank. We’re talking about non-work stuff now so I’m distracted and I don’t realize until it’s too late that she’s brought me with her all the way to the top floor, which is where Dream Law Firm holds of its Really Important Meetings. We had to walk through some winding hallways before finally getting to the main part of the room, which was dimly lit and filled with round tables covered with white tablecloths to really ghost up the haunted ballroom aesthetic. Wendy wades farther into the cluster of tables, but I stop at the perimeter because now self-awareness is beginning to ooze down my body in warm, clotted pigs blood clumps a la THE PROM SCENE OF CARRIE.

In this meeting are all of the directors, managers, supervisors. Lauren is there also for some reason, probably because she is smart. There is a woman there who is not part of our department but as soon as I hear her Australian accent, I recognize her as the woman who led a recent meeting about a new program that we will soon be using in our department. She is a real person, my sleep state didn’t construct her out of obligatory mommy issues or a subliminal fear of the Great Barrier Reef or whatever.

Although the GBR does seem like something Conscious Erin would be afraid of.

Anyway, I’m standing there, all scared-rabbit, and I’m saying, softly at first, “I’m not supposed to be here” and one by one, everyone turns to ogle me as my voice gets more racked with hysterics, and I’m looking both ways, willing my legs to move so I can run away, but I’m glued there, and now this lady, the Australian one for whom everyone is on their best behavior and dressed all nice while I’m wearing jeans, natch, she’s asking me who I am.

Not even in a snotty tone or anything, but she’s like legitimately curious who this Dumbo is who clearly has nothing to contribute to the day’s agenda.

And without hesitating, I blurt out, “Nobody. I’m nobody.”

A literal No One.

I can move now, and of course no one gets up to stop me or comfort me, let the loser go, thank god she’s not trying to sit with us, but of course I can’t find the way out. Every corridor is a DEAD ASS DEAD END. There are champagne-colored curtains in front of all the hallways, like we’re at the world’s most boring wedding reception and I’m getting tangled up in them and I AM SCREAMING but no one is listening anymore because the Australian is saying very captivating things. Evidently.

But then I find a row of shiny maroon curtains and when I step behind them, there’s a row of windows, I’m at the edge of the building now, and there are small tables to sit. So I figure I’ll just stay there and hide and now I’m eating a salad which I guess I was carrying the whole time. I’m starting to calm down a little because I’m hidden, no one can see me, I’ll just stay here forever if I have to, no one will miss me, when all of a sudden I hear people screaming and I can hear heavy footsteps thundering toward me. People from the meeting start to burst through the curtains, and someone is screaming, “LOOK HOW AWFUL!!” as they slam into me, pushing me against the window so that they can get closer. And when I realize it’s not me who is horrifying them, I turn to look out the window and see that the entire North Shore is on fire. There are flames and thick black smoke that covers half of the bridges so you can’t even really see past the river to the other side.

We are all screaming now, because the fire seems so close even though it’s on the other side of the river, and for some reason, the most vivid part of my dream is watching as a yellow dumptruck emerges from the smoke on the bridge closest to our building and just straight up careens across it, totally out of control, taking out every car that gets in its way, and we are traumatized when it ends in this apocalyptic, Jerry Bruckheimer-be-damned explosion.

I don’t know what that fucker represents, my out of control emotions maybe, but while we’re all gaping at that, I feel a jolt in my stomach, like I’m dropping on a roller coaster, and that’s when I lock eyes with Regina, who wasn’t in the meeting but is up in this weird ballroom now, and I can hear Margie saying something behind me, right as I realize I’m falling backward.

Because our building is tipping. The whole motherfucking building is going, we’re about to crash harder and more dramatically than that dumptruck fucker, give the Golden Globe to whoever write OUR demolition scene. and right when I realize I’m living my last seconds on earth, I wake up in real life in the throes of one of those silent, strangulated screams that only the cast of your nightmare can hear and now my cat Penelope is REALLY FUCKING WORRIED ABOUT ME which I know by the way she’s pushing my laptop over to me with the google search “How to update your resume” already pawed-in.

This was early Thursday morning and I have not been able to stop thinking about it, the palpable fear, the feeling in my gut as the law firm was literally pulling us all down to our certain deaths. I am shuddering all over again right now.

Usually my dreams are Dario Argento Does HR Pufnstuf and the setting is either my mom’s house, my pappap’s house, an abandoned amusement park, or some sick ass disgusting body of water. But this one, it is so textbook. So armchair. Hello INFERIORITY COMPLEX. Hello FEELINGS OF BEING LEFT OUT. Hello CAREER PANIC. Hello INADEQUACIES. 안영 I DONT BELONG.

I’m not going to quit my job or anything but I think this is a huge neon sign telling me that I need to chill the fuck out and reset myself. I really do feel like nobody sometimes, sorry to be emo, and like no one is hearing me.  Maybe I should start walking around with Spotify blasting outright on my phone.

Anyway, that’s all. I have to go look up “yellow dumptrucks in dreams” now. Maybe it means I have some latent desire to fuck a construction guy on a bridge and then one of us is going to get a fiery STD.