A chronological–yet not exhaustive–history of how Starbucks stays failing me

I’m not the first person to lament Starbucks’ spelling of her name. We’ve all laughed at the memes:

But I am consistently impressed—and equally perplexed—by the myriad ways Starbucks baristas manage to *&%$ up this simple four-letter word. E-R-I-N. My name is so basic. In fact, I was always jealous of my friends with prettier, cooler, longer names. To this day, my bestie, Michelle still rocks her high school-era nameplate necklace. And it still looks awesome, eight beautiful letters to balance out the chain. My name always looked like crap on jewelry. Too short to anchor a necklace, I’d catch a glimpse of myself in the mirror and the name part would be somewhere up around my shoulder…


I tried different types of chains, different lengths. I can’t tell you how much cheap, gold-plated “jewelry” I copped at U.S. 1 back in the day trying to be fly. I probably spent like a whole $30 total. Shout to my Franklin/Brunswick fam! Also, the 90’s.


A friend gifted me this necklace for my birthday in 2014 after I told him of my nameplate struggle. He could have spent a million dollars on it and it still would have looked this sad. Thanks anyway, boo. xo

But back to Starbucks. As the majority of the baristas I encounter are white, I often wonder 1) whether they’re not familiar with the name Erin (which I’ve always found difficult to believe), 2) if they figured they misheard me because: black, or 3) if they heard me correctly and just expect that my Erin is spelled more creatively??? Over the past 30+ years of life, I’ve grown accustomed to people spelling my name A-A-R-O-N. I rarely, if ever, roll my eyes anymore when I receive letter addressed to “Mr. Aaron Jackson.” And if that is how these baristas were spelling it, fine. It’s still ridiculous, but it’s a ridiculous I’ve come to accept. But alas, here are a few of the variations I’ve gotten:

May 14, 2015

November 2, 2013

This one is super Key & Peele-esque. A-Aron…?

April 25, 2015

April 25, 2015

This one was was actually spelled correctly, but my friend Kelly and I were at a Starbucks in Boston, where misspelling our names is akin to blasphemy.

July 3, 2015

July 3, 2015

I am almost positive no one in the history of Erins has ever spelled it this way.

September 16, 2016

September 16, 2016

Heron. Like the bird. Or Gil Scott. Or the drug.

September 18, 2016

September 18, 2016

The hell??? Arren? I give up.

I could never have imagined there were this many ways to get it wrong. Do you have any crazy Starbucks fails you can share? Fellow Erins out there–have you felt my pain? Please leave me a message below.

Baby, let’s cruise

Away from here…

I trust you read that in Smokey Robinson falsetto. Yesterday, we cruised thru Glacier Bay National Park and saw the Margarie Glacier. This is her/it—I’m not sure which pronoun glaciers prefer. Look how blue that ice is! I’ve seen the Portage Glacier from Anchorage, but this was a completely different experience because we cruised so much closer than I’ve ever been to Portage. I took a gang of glacier selfies, trying to get this photo, when I could have just asked someone to do take it for me. But these other cruisers don’t know my good angles…



“Outside” be so pretty, sometimes.

Operation #LWOACS – Day #1

I still plan on getting my #GirlTrek on while I’m on this ship. I will work out at least 5 days a week. No excuses. I expect all 3 of y’all regular readers to hold me accountable. Saturday, I even invited 1,800 people to carb-shame me in the dining rooms if they catch me slipping on my eating plan. Even if they’re not gonna do it, it’s keeping me in line. Wish me luck on #OperationLoseWeightOnACruiseShip #ImGoingToAWeddingTheDayAfterIGetHome

On Melania and the plagiarizing of my wardrobe

When I was in high school one of my teammates stole the outfit I wore to school—which included my mama’s earrings—out of my locker during practice. It was “Buddy-Buddy Day” so I’d worn the same exact outfit as my girl, Nicholle. Jeans and a brand new purple shirt. This girl who jacked me was AT LEAST 30 pounds lighter than me, yet the next day she wore the entire outfit to school. And I was looking at her like I imagine Auntie Michelle was looking at Melania last night:

Ummm… does she think I won’t recognize my own ish? It doesn’t even fit her!!!

That’s what you call a flawless analogy, folks. Word is bond.

I shared this story on Facebook and folks main question was, “Did you get your stuff back?” You’ll be happy to know that I did! Or, better… someone else got it back for me. This was Nicholle and my freshmen year, but because of our class schedules we had an upperclassman lunch period. We sat with some older girls who were nice enough to us; we were just babies to them and didn’t travel in the same circles. But on that day, when Cole and I saw old girl walk into the caf in “our” outfit from the day before, we were both like “WTF? She has on all [my] stuff!” Upon hearing us, one of the upperclassman at our table was like, WHO took your WHAT?” And before I knew it she was over there and back with my mom’s earrings, which I’m pretty sure I borrowed without permission. She was the kind of girl nobody messed with and I was just happy she was on my side. Even though I had no idea she was on my side. A few years ago, I found my upperclassman savior on Facebook and asked her if she remembered this incident. She barely remembered me, haha. But I’ll never forget that. It was the nicest, most gangsta things anyone’s ever done on my behalf.

Sidebar, this meme right here laid me out:

The rent IS pretty damn high…

So I got to Central Park about an hour before my Laughter in the Park show, and I looked over to my right and thought I recognized the guy sitting on the bench next to me. Wasn’t he that The Rent Is Too Damn High Party guy who ran for NY governor a few years ago?

I’m not really sure why I wasn’t sure that it was him—he’s got a pretty unique look—but when someone rollerbladed by and yelled his catch phrase, and he threw up his fist, I knew it was him. I walked over to introduce myself and invite him to our show, and he told me that he was on the show as well.

Ummm… as what?

He said he wasn’t gonna do stand-up, he was just going to talk to the crowd, which… OK. He had a puppet that looked just like him. And… and… He was a super nice man to talk to, despite his endorsement of Trump. Such a random day. Only in NYC.