Arthritis better be funny

It genuinely pisses me (and every other comedian, for that matter) off when I tell someone about an unfortunate thing that has happened in my life and he/she responds with some variation of “well, at least it’s good material.” It’s unsympathetic and dismissive and I wasn’t running a bit by you; I was just trying to tell you some real shit. Plus, not every painful thing is funny.

That said, I hope Rheumatoid Arthritis turns out to be hilarious. My doctor believes I have it based on blood work, family history (my grandmother had RA and my mom has MS) and the problems I’ve been having with my knees and hands the last couple months. And if he’s right, I know that being able to laugh through it is going to help. I still have some testing left before an official diagnosis, so in the meantime I’ve been going to physical therapy, taking water aerobics classes with senior citizens and trying to find the bright side.


So far, this is what I’ve come up with in terms of bright side:

  1. Anyone can board a plane when the gate agent calls for passengers who need assistance — that’s even before first class and elite frequent flyers — and they won’t even question you. Zone 3 my ass… do you see this limp?
  2. You can get felt up three times a week by a hot physical therapist and your insurance will cover it (well, 80% of it after you meet your $5,000 deductible #Obamacare). I hope I feel better soon, but also I hope I don’t. I only hope that last part a little bit, though.

I don’t know how accurate the facts cited in this article are, but I choose to take them as gospel. Because if laughter is the key, I’m gonna be straight. I’ll keep you posted on the other positive things I learn about RA (or whatever’s up with me) and if you pray, please say a prayer for me.

EJ’s Least Favorite Things: Ep. 7 — The Bathroom Hustle

So yesterday I walked into a bathroom in the Charlotte airport and there was a bathroom attendant in there. I can’t tell you how much I hate bathroom attendants… Or maybe I can. I hate them. So much. I dread the canned greeting (Her’s was “Welcome to ladies clean bathroom, ladies”), the inevitable shakedown at the sink. When I walk into a bathroom and see an attendant my first reaction is to calculate how long I’ll have to hold it if I don’t go just then. And no offense, but if I was going to accept a paper towel from someone, it wouldn’t be a woman who’s been cleaning toilets for 8 hours… I’ve said all that to say I have a new least favorite thing. Check it out and let me know if you feel me.

Bubble girl


So, I started a new round of allergy testing today. The crazy reactions from earlier in the summer have cooled off some, but based on the results from today’s environmental allergens prick test (43 needles, y’all!), I am apparently allergic to the Earth. Oak trees, pine trees, grass, ragweed, dust mites, cats, dogs… Apparently I’m allergic to cockroaches too. But even if I weren’t I probably wouldn’t kick it with them. I go back for two more rounds of testing towards the end of the month. And I’m pretty sure they’re gonna prescribe me a bubble.

With enemies like that…

I see this commercial about shingles all the time. So glad my dad was wrong and I don’t have it. It sounds like a terrible condition. The reason I bring it up is because at the end of this commercial, the guy says, “The rash, the itching, the burning that I experienced on the side of my neck and my shoulders, I wouldn’t wish it on my worst enemy.”

Yeah… whenever I hear someone say that, I think to myself, “You suck at enemy-ing.” Wishing painful things on each other is what enemies do. It’s literally in the definition:


noun \ĕn’ə-mē\

1. One who feels hatred toward, intends injury to, or opposes the interests of another; a foe.


You think after losing his family, being made a slave and having to fight a tiger, Maximus wouldn’t have wished a little shingles on Commodus? That when Lex Luthor had that Kryptonite all up in his face, Superman didn’t wish the tables were turned?

But I digress. What kind of things do these people wish for their enemies? Do they wish painful things on them, but just not as painful as shingles? Do they draw the line at broken limbs maybe? Kidney stones? Or are they just awesome people who abide by the “love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you” scriptural philosophy…? And if it’s the latter, how can I swap out my current enemies for ones like them? Because I know for a fact I’ve got some folks out there wishing their horrible sh*t and their mama’s on me.

With enemies like dude in the video, who needs friends?

Bitchy resting face

I have this. And combined with the “big eyes…” Pretty sure it’s why I’m still single.

I’m a mostly nice person, and I’m funny. But if I’m not smiling, it’s all bad. I was telling a friend yesterday about how one time at a bar, a guy standing behind me tapped me on the shoulder to chat and I think to buy me a drink (which, like never ever happens anymore), and I turned around with my “I’m-interested-in-what-you-have-to-say-raised-eyebrow” look and his response was “Damn, bitch! Why you got a attitude?” It’s an attitude obviously, but it didn’t seem like the right time to correct his grammar.

Recording artists Jay Z and Beyonce watch from courtside during the first half of the NBA basketball game between the Los Angeles Lakers and the Dallas Mavericks in Dallas ejsideeye

See, the main problem is that I lack the ability to raise my eyebrows without widening my eyes. I was born without the very crucial eyebrow isolation tendon-ligament. So my “yes, how can I help you?” looks exactly like my “the eff you want?”  I could give Beyonce a run for her money in a side-eye contest — and y’all know that’s tough to do. Plus I’m puffy and people always assume puffy, brown girls are mad. I’m so aware/self-conscious about it that during a production meeting before we started shooting “Exhale” I explained to my co-hosts, director and producer that I have absolutely no control over my face and not to think I was “judge-y” or had a attitude.

The one cool thing about the “big eyes” is that they work great for stand-up. People come up to me all the time after shows to talk about my eyes. They use words like “expressive” and “communicative,” and compliment me on them. And it’s always strange to hear because before I started comedy, the closest thing I ever got to a compliment was, “You got some big ass eyes.” 

I’ve tried to go out to places and purposefully look happy and approachable but you can’t sit around cheesing all the time without looking simple. So please, help me spread the word:

Erin Jackson is not really a giant bitch. She just looks like one.

Hollywood Teeth

I do a joke in my act about a disagreement I got into with my dentist when I went in for a crown and he basically told me my teeth look like Mountain Dew. I’ve always thought I had a pretty nice smile, but after being introduced to what “Hollywood teeth” look like, I started to think that dentist may have been right and started checking out professional teeth whitening. It seems like Zoom Whitening was pretty much the industry standard. It takes about an hour and though it looked uncomfortable, I thought to myself, “I can do anything for an hour.”

They start by putting in one of those mouth-stretcher-outer things to keep your mouth open. And then they start painting your teeth with the bleaching material. After that they put this UV light in your mouth for 3 rounds of 15 minutes…

IMG_20130607_081918_870  IMG_20130607_085940_188  IMG_20130607_083747_548

And then VOILA!!! You have glow-in-the-dark teeth like Ross on “Friends.”

The Zoom website tells you that you may experience gum sensitivity, but they leave out the part about the random sharp, throbbing pain in your teeth that’s going to continue for the next 10-12 hours. The only reason I knew this was a possibility was because I mentioned to a friend in passing the day before I went that I was having the procedure and he told me it happened to him. The dentist made it seem like my friend was just being a baby about the whole thing — “mild discomfort” he called it.


It was some of the worst pain I’ve ever experienced. It started while I was still in the chair (my appt. was at 8am) and it lasted until after 11 pm. It had me banging on counters in convenience stores and screaming in my car. My teeth are much whiter, but I will never, NEVER, never ever ever do that again.


This is as good as it gets, Hollywood.