Author Archives: conchshell


KERF Recaps: A Perfect Flow of Hiatus

Hey there, Shadowy Clique!

You might have noticed the disappearance of ads in the last few days.

The reports from GetOffMyInternets HQ are that the traffic (or as Bath Matt might say, PAGEVIEW$) coming into Smugnom isn’t worth advertisers paying much per click anymore, apparently, and while I love writing Smugnom — and, even more, being a part of the exchanges, criticism, anecdotes, and gifs in the comment section — I’m doing it both because it’s fun and because it’s paid writing work. So, for now, the KERF recaps will be on hiatus, and perhaps we can see some of the other talented GOMI-ers step up with some recaps of the rest of the pantheon of kale-eating nutters whose Healthy Living Blogs have always been the focus of Smugnom.

There’s an amazing audience here on Smugnom, and I’m not only honored to have been able to provoke a laugh or two, I’m immensely grateful that this place has given me and others a spot where we can roll our eyes at someone who whines about the quality of her vacations and the drudgery of her easy life. Smugnom and GetOffMyInternets distracted me and made me laugh until I needed my inhaler during the hardest, most hellish years of my life.

I don’t like the thought of suspending this thing we’re all part of, but hopefully, we can figure out how to make the ad-money again flow like a freshly punched box of Franzia soon — without having to resort to sponsored posts about radish matchsticks, diet cranberry cocktails, and charity headbands.

In the meantime, I hope to see you all over on the forums — don’t forget to bring the Idris Elba gifs!

Love and Franzia,


foodsmug lifesmug recaps

KERF Recaps: Kathy Owns Bowls, Eats Restaurant Leftovers, Uses Meal-Planning, and Invents Mustard

It’s time for another installment of Conchshell Had Too Much Regular Work Shit To Do And Couldn’t Do Smugnom For Forever On A Regular Basis Because Then Her Cats Would Be Eating Her Fingertips Batman Returns-Style.

Which is to say, for everyone on a mobile device, I’m sorry for the gifs.

So, Kathy’s Jan. 23 post is called “I Love Things In Bowls,” and it’s about how Kathy’s discovered a new way to get her 10.26 hours of sleep a night — buttah-filled, chocolatey, buttercreamery marijuana edibles.

Just kidding. If that were the case, it wouldn’t be taking me two weeks to drag myself around to recapping the latest entries on Kathy Consumes Things That Aren’t Imaginary. Instead, the entry is actually about how she ate granola one morning, and then she ate soup for lunch. Get this — both of them? She ate them out of bowls.

We learn a lot of amazing information from this post.

1. Kathy gave away some of her possessions because she is constantly evolving into a better person:

Did you know I actually gave away a lot of my bowl collection?

No. Why would we know that?

At one point I probably had 100 different bowls in every color and size, and now I am down to just my very favorites – including all of our wedding Pottery Barn Great White bowls.

Or rather, the Great White bowls from Pottery Barn she received as wedding gifts. Which, yes, the average intelligent reader could deduce — if that were the way intelligent writing worked. But this isn’t James fucking Joyce, and Kathy doesn’t have nearly enough thoughts to coffin her in mummycases, embalmed in smoked paprika and unmanageable herbs.

Kathy’s talking about owning pieces of white, made-in-China-in-2006 crockery, and how concentrating on those makes her a better person as she grows ancient and wise:

The older I get the more I feel the need to simplify the things my life!

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Nah. You want things to be easy. That’s not the same.

2. Kathy has superhuman willpower, and can only allow herself “crumbs” of her favorite things, as she does for her breakfast:

Cville Cluster is the best granola ever, but it’s so good that I can’t keep it around. Every now and then Matt brings me the crumbs and small clusters from the bottom of the giant mixing bowl when they make a fresh batch at the bakery, so today’s topping was a nice treat! …. FYI, no nut butter today because the ‘Cluster is quite high in fat! It’s about as dense as peanut butter.

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3. Her toddler is still irritating the shit out of her to the point that she needs to call him out on a regular basis:

This was the first time Mazen got the concept of “cereal with milk” and he was quite a happy camper!

In her defense, that boy who got Most Likely To Succeed at Kathy’s school who works in the White House now probably “got the concept of ‘cereal with milk’” when he was five months younger than Carbz.

4. Kathy is super skilled at using her power with words to describe what makes food appealing. Her lunch of soup, for instance, was topped with

cheese because it’s freakin’ delicious.  

and leftover sweet potatoes because they were

a nice touch!

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5. Almost as skilled as she is at describing joyful interactions among the members of her family, saying that, since her parents are headed to town for the weekend, Carbz is

flipping out with excitement and has been counting down the days….as only a two year old would know how to do ; )

What does that mean? Are there other ways to flip out? How would a toddler possibly count down days? Why the winky face? Either take 10 extra seconds to explain yourself or just go with saying the kid smiles every time you mention their visit. On a scale of bowl-simplifying to herb-managing, that has to be closer to the former, right?

The comments are filled with chicks with their own blogs to promote saying, basically, OMG I eat things out of bowls too! And, there’s this one weird one:

Screen Shot 2015-02-07 at 10.50.59 PMNo, it’s not lame. It’s lame that you think you need a scolding or affirmation from Katy for it. Eat two tacos out of a bowl with a handle, for fuck’s sake. Go crazy.

Last Monday’s post — yes, we’re all the way back to January 26, ugh — is another half-assed attempt to talk about what an exciting, relaxing, replete-with-exclamation-points weekend she had after a hard week of providing food for herself and her child.

• She had a “great time” with her parents, who were visiting from Hillsborough: 2 exclamation points.

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• Kasual Kathy free-wheeled it without her fancy camera and shot all her weekend photos on the phone she can’t even name-drop the brand of even through she got it through a sponsorship deal: 1 exclamation point.

• She ordered pizza for her parents and made a salad and called it a “pizza party”: 2 exclamation points.

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• She and her parental babysitters visited a toy store, the free children’s museum downtown — and the fakery, which all adds up to “pack[ing] in a full day” for her child: 0 exclamation points.

• They all ate lunch at Bodo’s Bagels (which she just calls “Bodos,” as though we should know) for a bagel.

She describes the bagel as “big honkin’,” making sure to note that she only eats such a thing “a few times a year” and that hers was whole wheat, but that she should have added “a leaf of lettuce for a bit more nutrition”: 2 exclamation points and one smiley-face emoticon.

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This looks delicious until you remember that there’s no thin slices of red onion, and probably no capers on it either.

• Her child “was totally melting down” because he’d skipped his nap, so her “grand plans to go to World of Beer,” not that she bothers telling us what that is, had to be canceled. Kathy and her mom stayed home and “opened a bottle of Thomas George Estates wine from Sonoma while we chilled” and waited for Bath Matt and Kathy’s dad to finish their “glorious time”: 0 exclamation points because she missed out on this:

• Bath Matt and Grandpa Pee Paw finally dragged their asses home, bringing take-out salmon, pork, potatoes, and succotash so Kathy could eat dinner.

It was “worth the wait”: 2 exclamation points.

Screen Shot 2015-02-07 at 11.13.58 PM• Sunday breakfast was a bagel from the shop and fresh mango eaten “‘off the rind,’” which she says is a “trick” from her recent trip to the Disappointment Republic: 1 exclamation point.

Screen Shot 2015-02-07 at 11.14.15 PM• She did her chores in her “jammies” and then ate more leftover stuff “the guys” brought from the night before, salad, cheese, and “buttery” Marcona almonds: 1 exclamation point for the almonds.

Screen Shot 2015-02-07 at 11.15.09 PM• A few words about how she, but especially her kid, hope her parents return: 2 exclamation points and one smiley-face emoticon.

• Queen Kathy wishes her minions a “Happy 26th” to celebrate being 8 months away from her actual birthday: 1 exclamation point.

In the comments, there’s a boring discussion where someone asks Kathy about smoothies without milk, and Kathy says she tries not to eat protein powder, but gives a few recommendations for protein powders she sometimes buys (not that her readers ever hear about them) and then recommends “plant protein” and has to clarify in another exchange that she means those protein powders. She also gives an even-more useless, dismissive answer, though, when one of her regular commenters — a girl in high school whose own blog’s “about” section describes a pretty shitty early life of physical abuse and eating disorders — asks her what kind of camera Kathy uses:

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Thanks, Kathy. Glad to know the Olympus E-M5 and the Canon Powershot, C100, 5D, and 7D, all of which have “Mark II” models, are all equal in your mind. Linda, while admittedly imperfect, is at least more consistent with her readership than Kathy is with her support of the companies who pay her for her phony enthusiasm — throw a teenage aspiring healthy-living blogger a fucking bone once in a while, will you, Kathy?

Last Tuesday’s post, on Jan. 27, is about how it was snowing in Charlottesville:

We are getting a few flurries here, but nothing to write home the internet about. 

and how Kathy ate breakfast:

….a quarter of a crumbled Whole Wheat Blueberry Buttermilk muffin from the bakery. Matt brought it home after a test bake and we gave it four thumbs up! Served over Snowville Creamery yogurt with a slice banana and coffee.

To which a commenter asked:

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The post also covers how she ate a salad with trendy almonds, ranch dressing that her mother-in-law (thankfully fucked off to San Diego to live in happiness instead of lady-in-waiting status for unnecessary chores) “left in our fridge,”

leftover cornbread, pimento cheese from Whole Foods — which, according to her photo is “smoked gouda and pimento cheese”. She describes the dip as “amazing” and fauxyouthtastically exclaims, “Smoked everything all the time.” Ugh. She also had a $1.36/ounce, onion-containing No Bull Burger and some other stuff on top of some additionally other stuff.

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LONG TIME NO SEE! I actually forgot about No Bulls for a while (I know)

We know…. what?


We don’t know. Does anyone? Kathy spent all last year eating meatless lentil pucks. I had to look that up to make sure, because no one keeps that kind of supposed information in their heads, and how are you supposed to tell if there’s been a break? Kathy feels like this should be notable, though, because

….the nutrition info has dropped the calories from 170 to 130. I’m not sure if they are smaller (they look the same to me) or if they were re-evaluated, but I’m pleased with the update.

Yes, Kathy. I’m sure No Bull did that just because they heard about your diet and wanted to speed things up. 40 calories is going to make all the difference, Kathy. All the difference. Where’s that thinspiration Pinterest, Kathy?

In the comments, there’s a weird exchange where she’s asked about her child’s transition from crib to toddler bed, and says that she wishes she could still keep him “contained.”

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Last Wednesday’s post, on Jan. 28, titled “Snips + Jumps,” is about how Kathy and Toddler Carbz had

SUCH a fun morning together!!

Why’s that, Kathy?

• Kathy “started the day with a special breakfast” of oatmeal and shit that she made the night before, so she was super happy to not have to spend any time on the day when she ate it. She admittedly fucked it up a little bit, but she and her kid “gobbled it down!”

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• Then, she got to go to Target “to empty my wallet of all its dollar bills.”

• She then had someone cut Toddler Carbz’s hair,

(which went sooo smoothly this time!)

Kathy also referred to the hairstylist using “styling product,” which required the use of a smiley-face emoticon.

After the haircut, she gave her son “a special treat” by going to an indoor jumping area —

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— where she let her kid have fun while she made veiled comments about her calorie-burning and her breasts —

talk about a workout! Wear your sports bras ladies : )

— and then to the fakery, where she shamed her child for dipping his peanut butter and jelly sandwich in her dressing:


Oh, shut up, Salad-Fritter ’12.

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Last Thursday’s entry, on Jan. 29, titled “Last Night’s Dinner,” is another post about how awesome the meal-planning service that has occasionally sponsored Our Kathy is, even though whenever she mentions it, it’s always in the context of how she’s stopped using it and has subsequently become overwhelmed.

Why has she stopped using it? No one knows. What is she doing that’s made her too busy to use a thing that says Buy This, Prepare This, and Make This On This Day and This Day and This Day and This Day and This Day? She’ll never tell. Which is why you start out reading a post that opens like this —

Whenever I start to feel overwhelmed about all of the things I must do everyday to get healthy food on the table, I turn to Cook Smarts. Cook Smarts doesn’t pay me to say that – I truly love the service! When I’m running late for the grocery store on Sunday morning I have someone else do the thinking for me.

— and are liable to react WHY THE FUCK. It’s not that we don’t entirely believe Kathy’s busy, it’s just that, sometimes, it’s hard to understand why she’s “overwhelmed” and “running late” and needing someone else to “do the thinking” when she doesn’t tell her readership.

“What’s for dinner?” is a surprise each night. We have had several great dinners lately – including this one made with cauliflower rice! 

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It was my first time trying it (this falls into the “I would have never tried this on my own” category.

Why? Why, with a service that purports to tell you what you’re going to be eating for the entire week ahead, are you’re going to be mystified by your nightly dinner? Does CookSmarts send you envelopes sealed with wax that you’re not allowed to open until the evening of said dinner? Do you need to complete some kind of Midnight Madness scavenger hunt before you can learn what you’re going to eat at 7 p.m.?

Screen Shot 2015-02-08 at 10.08.15 PM

This isn’t the case, apparently, but the system still seems to be throwing Kathy for a lumpy, made-at-home-Cheerios-loop. For instance, the “cauliflower rice” exhausts and terrifies her:

It was very much like real rice in size and shape, but I think I prefer the real deal for its texture.

So…. eat a bowl of rice?

As a second example, Kathy made pork-stuffed cabbage rolls….

Screen Shot 2015-02-08 at 11.04.20 PM

except that she used beef, because she had beef.

…..and they turned out delicious. Another lightened up meal for the win! (Unlightened by red wine two nights in a row <3 )

Kathy, why are your dinners unenlightened? Or “unlightened”? Or…. is that even a word?

I’m so confused.

Kathy moves swiftly on, though, talking again about meals as though one is equivalent to a battle-like “front” —

On the dessert front, Carpe Donut is trying out a new smaller version of their Frodo, a donut ice cream sandwich (yes!!) I love anything that comes petite sized, so this was perfect split and shared in two. They are hoping to sell these in grocery stores!

Screen Shot 2015-02-08 at 10.49.15 PM

— because her fight against ingesting calories is a life or death struggle:

Screen Shot 2015-02-08 at 8.09.32 PM

Kathy ends her post with a weirdly blurry photograph over the shoulder of her husband and her child where they’re talking to her mother-in-law and said mother-in-law

says HI via Google Hangouts!!

Er, thanks.

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Her readers are as fuzzy as her photos, with the first one saying she’s “confused” —

Screen Shot 2015-02-08 at 11.07.02 PM

— another commenter saying blogging daily about “similar” meals is quite “tiresome,” and yet another saying that Kathy should really let people know how much the meal-planning program gave her in terms of payment and free services:

Screen Shot 2015-02-08 at 11.11.34 PM

And yet another links to a This American Life episode about Internet trolls, in which Lindy West is harassed by someone who takes on her late father’s name, a variety of females on NPR are criticized for their voices, and the guy who maintains a camera focused on an osprey nest receives critical emails when the osprey mom starts attacking her babies.

Last Friday’s entry, on Jan. 30, is about a “cozy” “lunch date” with Bath Matt that Kathy had at a place called Court Square Tavern. The lunch is, in Kathy’s words,

now a week old, but I wanted to share it before it is forgotten!

Why would it be forgotten? I mean, in Kathy’s words, the restaurant is a place she’s been walking by “for years” at lunchtime on her way home from the gym. She says “the best cooking smells imaginable” waft out the door:

Garlic, sizzling seafood, bacon, bread. You name it. (Onions too I’m sure!)

So, what happened?


warmed up with a cup of decaf tea before perusing the menu and specials board. Cream + sugar too.

Oh. That was well phrased.

Next, she and Bath Matt looked at the menu, and Kathy described what she found there in language she usually reserves for posts where she’s invited to someone’s wedding and is allowed to both eat cake there and take cake home:

The menu was so tempting and full of comfort foods – from smoked salmon to soups to lots of kinds of bratwurst. It felt very much like the pubs I went to in England. (Matt says they have a good beer selection in the evenings.)

Oh! Tell us more about how that summer in college when you studied in England has stuck with you, Kathy:

Klassic 2007 Kathy.

Klassic 2007 Kathy.

Vintage 2008 Kathy, geographical genius.

Vintage 2008 Kathy, geographical genius.

Anyway, back here in 2015, Kathy kontinues:

Matt and I couldn’t decide what to order and were both tempted by the smoked salmon, so we shared the smoked salmon plate to start. Loved the assemble-it-yourself style.

Screen Shot 2015-02-08 at 11.30.43 PM

In the end, Kathy orders some pea soup “with chewy bites of ham” and toast, and Bath Matt ordered sausage and mustard because he orders meat whenever he’s allowed out to a restaurant, since there’s none to be found in the frozen-lentil steppe of the home freezer. Kathy claimed that his dish was served with “the best mustard ever!” and that it was a “Must buy!”

Which, almost surely, means we’ll never see it on her blog, given the history of the Vosges peanut butter bonbons (“One of THE BEST chocolates ever!!!”) which she raved about needing to purchase more of in all caps in 2010, the roasted tomatoes Kathy insisted she had to make herself after having them at that Forage dinner club in 2013, and the Recipage-honored “Nutty Vanilla Sweet Potato + Kale Soup” Kathy made for a contest at in 2009 (improbably winning $100 with it)

that she called the “best soup we’ve ever made,” promising that she and Bath Matt would “be making this one again!” (she seems to have done so once, in 2011).

Screen Shot 2015-02-09 at 12.06.14 AM


And the fact that, well, “Black Forest mustard” by Dietz and Watson doesn’t seem to exist.

foodsmug lifesmug recaps

KERF Recaps: Kathy Puts Frozen Stuff in a Pot and Pretends It’s Soup

The recaps are two weeks late again, so let’s punish ourselves by jumping straight back into Kathletic Conditioning without stretching OR remembering our Camelback —

— as we return to her entry from Thursday, Jan. 22, “Easy Freezer Vegetable Soup.”

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Ever since deciding she was going to dumb down her posts, not publish them to the web in the morning, and not stick to a weekday schedule, everything’s gotten even more dumbsy-turvy than usual in Kathy’s world. This post is a “recipe” where she uses up a bunch of leftover shit and makes something that looks terrible, but starts off and finishes up trying to be chatty and casual, using up her allotment of punctuation to make emoticons:

Oooo I’m up late!! Rather, I’m writing late : ) And probably heading right to bed after this.

She published around 7:30 p.m. that night. If I had a nana, she’d be brightly side-eyeing Kathy over a bridge hand and a glass of Scotch.

Did you guys watch Downton Abbey and The Bachelor this week? The first half of the week gets all the good TV. But don’t worry – Survivor fills up the rest

Shit, I spoke too soon. I guess Kathy really WAS exhausted after what was probably a day of Stairmastering for 26 minutes and eating half as many tacos as pregnant ladies everywhere! Are you okay, Kathy?

I LOVED the story line about Mary + her hotel stay in Downton and Whitney is my current favorite for Chris. Kaitlyn is pretty fun too, but I can see Whitney as his wife. Kelsey needs more time with him!

I think I’m more confused about what she just said than when Kathy was calling the show “Downtown” Abbey, unless Whitney is an impertinent village nutritionist, Kelsey and Kaitlyn are dashing scullery maids, and Chris is some rapscallion Seventh Marquess of Milford Haven.

If she could move beyond her distaste for meat, Kathy might have done well as an RD back then.

Stupid “The Bachelor.”

Screen Shot 2015-02-04 at 11.36.44 AM

Anyway, on to the completely unrelated topic of what the post is supposed to be about. Kathy had half-used frozen vegetables and frozen cooked lentils in the freezer, which is awesome, because she didn’t want to have to chop anything:

While I totally agree that fresh vegetables taste best, frozen are 97% as good in soup form and sure save a lot of chopping time!

I mean, do you guys know how much time she saved not have to chop those lentils? At least 26 seconds.

Into a pot of water, she dumps about three cups of frozen vegetables (er, four once people point out in the comments that she didn’t mention green beans), about two and a half cups of frozen lentils, a box of chicken broth, one clove of garlic, one cup of uncooked barley, a single teaspoon of paprika, and salt, pepper, and Parmesan “to taste,” brings the whole mess to a boil, and simmers it until the barley is cooked (and the vegetables are crap).

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I’m almost certain the out-of-focus blob on the left is the greater Malacca toad, a cute little bugger Kathy really shouldn’t eat because he’s being threatened by production of one of sponsor General Mills’ favorite asshole ingredients, palm oil.

This nearly fatless pot of corn and peas, she says,

made about 6 servings – 4 if you have a hearty appetite!

And of course everything was super nutritious.

Oh, OF COURSE. Of course it was, Kathy. I mean, you made it! How could it not be? We would never entertain such an idea.

It didn’t taste good —


The Parmesan cheese and hot sauce made the dish!

— but at least there was enough hot sauce to numb everyone’s tastebuds to that.

She ends the post with a “lifestyle tidbit to note” that she “CANCELLED” her order of that $700-1900 (on sale) pretend “boulangerie” table from Restoration Hardware.

Why? Well, because she didn’t want to read the literally only one page of product information that says, after repeated mentions of the circa-1985 pine being “unfinished,” that you should probably throw on some clear furniture wax, at the very least:

Screen Shot 2015-02-04 at 11.59.57 AMKathy says she

….loved the feel and color, [but] started to freak out about oil and water stains.

And she doesn’t want to hear any suggestions about what she should do instead, thank you very much! In addition to suggesting the usual furniture retailers, Kath’s commenters share stories about how a husband made a table from reclaimed cypress, supporting locally made furniture from Concepts Created and Carolina Farm Table, going to the wonderful Habitat for Humanity ReStore, or purchasing a less-expensive and better-made table from Amish craftsmen (“Come take a trip to Intercourse, PA the next time they invite you to Hershey!” suggests a delightful commenter called Beth) and she ignores them all. Thanks, Kathy!

No chance of Bath Matt following up his porch critter with a full-sized dining Gump then?

Not that “stains” were a potential problem when she decided to re-upholster her living room furniture in white (“inspired” by “Operation Beach Cottage”) with a 20-month-old in the house, but hey, Kathy’s as inconsistent as her definitions of “soup” —

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— so I’m sure no one’s surprised.

*and also because I’ve been trying to actually attain more than the roughly 50% of Kathy’s daily sleep time I’ve been subsisting on for the last two and a half years. What can I say? The thought of fritters on salad is more terrifying than the evil bicycle clowns in “Pee Wee’s Big Adventure.”



foodsmug lifesmug shillsmug

KERF Recaps: Kathy Gets Paid To Eat Free Food

Wednesday’s entry is a sponsored post brought to us by Blue Apron. What’s Blue Apron? It takes Kathy almost 200 words before she tells us that Blue Apron provides “recipes.” But also, meals.
The meals at Blue Apron are chef-designed recipes that you can make at home, and they definitely step up the fancy a notch. Plus since all of the ingredients you need are shipped (for free) right to you, there is never any need for planning or waste at the end.
Good grief, Kathy. The meals “definitely step up the fancy a notch”? Don’t worry about trying to be clever when you can’t even clearly state that Blue Apron sends you recipes and the ingredients you’ll need to make each one. Also, you totally just made it sound like the food is free, which it’s not.
Here’s what she’s made recently — or allegedly recently:
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What does she do in those almost 200 words before (sort of) telling us what Blue Apron is? She tells us that she never put any effort into cooking dinner:
For years I made dinners flying by the seat of my pants. I rarely ever used a recipe, and didn’t actually know what we were having until I started to get hungry.
Cue toddler-blaming in 3, 2, 1….
But, as you’ve heard before, when you have a child (or a busy job or a change in lifestyle) winging it just doesn’t work.

She then says that, in 2014, she and Bath Matt “worked hard to get organized,” because such a thing has always been impossible with the hectic madness of Bath Matt working a walkable mile away at a franchise bakery and getting home at 5 p.m., Kathy maintaining a blog, going to the gym, and attending to the basic needs of a single, healthy child who was born in late 2012, Kathy’s parents a state away, Bath Matt’s mom in town, and the ability to pay for house-cleaners, day care, and the occasional babysitter. Having a subscription to that other service that sends her meal plans for a week has been great, Kathy says, and that she’s been so surprised that the services has been

bringing in a lot more diversity into our meals. From technique to flavor, cooking other people’s recipes has pushed me out of my comfort zone. I’ve also learned quite a bit!

None of those things she’s learned have been about using onions, putting things in the refrigerator for a few hours, or the appropriate use of cold butter in crust-making, but Kathy says the recipes have resulted in

additions to my cooking repertoire that have resulted in extra delicious meals this year

The tips she has supposedly have learned have been: prep stuff and read the damn recipe —

I can’t tell you how many times I have planned something for dinner and not looked at the recipe until after I’m super hungry and ready to eat! Meal planning and prep has forced me to mentally prepare for our dinner recipe all day and sometimes before that.

This isn’t the Olympics, Kathy. Why are you “mentally prepar[ing]” for a recipe that someone sends you and you don’t even have to think about?

The second tip is to use lemon and lime when the recipes call for them:

This is a step I almost always used to skip. “Meh, you can’t taste it,” I would think.

You’re an idiot, Kathy.

Your readers agree.

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But following recipes has made me question that mentality and switch to the “if they say I should I probably should” one. FOMO = fear of missing out!

What does that bullshit FOMO have to do with not using almost the world’s most simple ingredient?

I’ve started keeping lemons and limes on hand for use in my own recipes too. And yes, you can taste it!

She then says that the meal-planning service that’s paying her to write about stuff has taught her the very important lesson of using the “right oils for the right things.” She links to a chart to explain what she means.

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The next tip is that people should spend money on stuff. Fuck all of you guys who can’t afford to purchase these things.

Freshly baked bread. Flavored olive oils. Fresh pasta. Tomatoes canned at their peak. Local jam. Invest in the good stuff! If you’re saving money by cooking at home, then at least bridge the gap a little by investing in ingredients that will make your food taste restaurant-worthy.

That includes herbs:

Herbs are annoying to buy at the grocery store. You pick out a bunch, sometimes pay a lot for it, use a few pinches and then it rots in your fridge. This has happened to me many times!

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Maybe it should also involve investing in spellcheck.

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She ends by providing a link for 2 free meals for 100 customers who order something through her link, and by saying that the company that’s paying her to write her post provides meals that are

the perfect bridge between a date night out and a date night in.

Her commenters range from flattering link-bait to her mom,

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to criticism:

Screen Shot 2015-02-01 at 9.34.40 PM Criticism she’s not going to respond to, of course. Guess that’s part of the ultra-boring, post-adaptation new way.

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KERF Recaps: Kathy Enjoys Bro-Country and Feeds Her Guests Leftover Ice Cream Scrapings

Monday’s post is about how great Kathy’s weekend was, as usual. She went to a concert!

The highlight of my weekend was most definitely the Florida Georgia Line concert!

Oh, okay. Cool. I’m not familiar with the duo, because they seem like a pair of insensitive, smirking asses, but at least it’s not some pseudo-virtue night of jumping jacks and shit wine out of plastic glasses under the guise of virtuefun at the expensive gym. Tell us what you liked about the concert, Kathy:

I just love country music. Rather than trucks and fields (which do take me back to high school), country brings out feelings of small towns for me. Relationships, parties with friends, and living life in the moment – soaking up sunshine, the lake, or a good beer.

Wait…. huh?

What? What does any of that mean? Let’s take a closer look. Kathy starts out saying she loves country music. This is up for debate, but let’s accept her premise. Okay, continue. Kathy says that the country genre “brings out feelings of small towns” for her, rather than evoking “trucks and fields,” even though, on a tangential note, both the concept of trucks and that of fields do conjure up thoughts of high school. To explain the difference, I think she lists “Relationships, parties with friends, and living life in the moment – soaking up sunshine, the lake, or a good beer.” In conclusion…. no, I have no fucking clue why “trucks and fields” have everything to do with high school and nothing to do with relationships, parties, sunshine, lakes, and “good beer,” while “small towns” have everything to do with those things.

Exactly, Nelson.

In any convoluted case, Kathy says that the group is “one of [her] favorite bands!” even though Bath Matt makes fun of her by sending her links that point out how generic and tired their shit is. (Thanks, Bath Matt. What the fuck do you listen to? Gruit-core?)

In the lead-up to bro country evening, Kathy says she, herself at least partially participated in feeding her family:

….I made stuffed shells. This recipe was a wing-it success! We stuffed the shells (after they were boiled) with ground beef, sun-dried tomatoes, Parmesan, frozen spinach and basically all the ingredients in this meatball recipe.

No shit, Kathy? I totally thought there was a method of stuffing meat into DRIED PASTA. Also, the meatball recipe she links to is her own, where you use 1 pound ground beef, 10 ounces frozen spinach, 1/3 cup of sun-dried tomatoes in oil, 1 cup panko, 1/2 grated cheese, 2 eggs, salt, pepper, and the world’s smallest teaspoon of garlic powder. How are Kathy’s meatballs? Let’s ask Sponsored Thanksgiving, who made them. Or, you can take Kathy’s unreliable word:


With sauce poured on top, they turned out great!

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The red meat must have come out because poor, long-suffering, jambalaya-making Jeff, came over for dinner. He had to bring salad.

They also ate ice cream.

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Kathy says it’s “worth noting” that they split only half a cup of ice cream scraped from the bottom of two containers and that hers was the really nice custom-made one, which I’m sure she felt rich generosity for giving away because it was her special snowflake stash, when she should have realized she was being a gross miser because who the fuck gets stingy about ice cream? This isn’t Little House in the Big Woods, where obtaining sugar is a perilous journey through panthery woods to obtain gingham and rock candy.

The PB Cup was Karen’s and it ended up in our freezer when she moved – yum!

Guess what, Kathy? Not worth noting. Also? Don’t give your fucking guests ice cream from almost four months ago. That’s disgusting. Go to the store and get fresh stuff, and get more than a pint, so that your guests can have as much as they want. If it’s even possible that your guests might want more of anything and you’re not making it available for them, it’s not hospitality, you stingy bint.

On Saturday, Kathy and her child ate oats, and then went to fancy gym, and then left fancy gym so they could run six miles.

Post-baby PR baby! We ran quite slow (per Nelle’s 13 miler training plan) and I felt good for most of the run. It wore me out for the rest of the day though!

Oh, look at you, Kathy, graciously accommodating Nelle’s speed. We know you would totally run faster if it weren’t for her, wouldn’t you?

After the run, she had

After Mazen and I got home, I proceeded to eat All The Chips. But I paired them with a healthy sardine salad. It’s been my post-run craving these past few weeks!

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Kathy trying to wedge Hyperbole and a Half into her blog is as awkward as when she wears that band-leader jacket.

Kathy then went back out and took her child to the children’s museum and then went back home “for nap.”

When she woke up, she was ready to go to the concert, so she put two ounces of wine in a glass and set it on her bathroom shelf and took a picture and posted it on Instagram. Or, as she calls it, she engaged in

A little pregaming!

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She and her four friends went to something called the Sedona Taphouse for an “awesome” dinner of wine, “a nice salad,” and a “pretty darn awesome!!” main dish:

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The five pre-gamed, bro-countried ladies then ate chocolate cake with ketchup, I guess —

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— but Kathy had the tiniest portion of all:

Just two bites – perfect!

How was the concert? Well, Thomas Rhett opened:

love him!

Then, the main act played, and Florida Georgia Line was

awesome. Love their style!

I think Kathy would fall down blue on the floor if she’d had to write this entry without using the words “awesome” and “love.” She then posts this photo:

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Kathy’s caption: “Blondes like to have fun!!”

Get your shine on!

I don’t know what that means and I refuse to look it up.

Next, she posts this photo:

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With the caption, “Guess it’s pretty clear everyone has a smart phone these days ; )”

Yes, because “smart phones” are the only ones with light-up displays. And yeah, wow, Kathy, even the poors who shop at PetSmart and don’t go to happy hour gym and who don’t have NERD on their license plates are capable of obtaining the same technology.

Kathy was out “very late,” so Bath Matt brought her pancakes with chocolate peanut butter on top in bed. She was awake at 7, though, so that probably means she didn’t get to bed until 10:27 p.m.

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Swinging back to penitent and healthy from her supposedly wild night of fun and wine, Kathy says she did “work around the house” on Sunday, finished assembling her $500 of particle board —

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— ate soup and kombucha, went grocery shopping at Whole Foods, and served her family

Garlicky kale + catfish + veggies + the last of an open bottle of vino.

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She ends by saying something else I don’t wish to know the meaning of:

Hope y’all had shining weekends too!

Tuesday brings with it Kathy’s tentative venturing into the world of shorter posts about what-the-fuck-ever. The neighbors who have the baby and the chickens came over on Monday, and Kathy was excited about it because it was an excuse for chocolate, shortbread, and alcohol:

Company always makes for a fun Monday : ) What normally would be a boring night turns into a celebration with wine and dessert!

She left the boxes out from that diaper-change-crafts hutch monstrosity, so at least Toddler Carbz and Neighbor Girl had something to play with aside from rusty baskets of rubber ducks from Grandma Buzz’s attic.

The pop-up ads on Kathy's site are now literally working to protect the privacy of her child and her child's friends, at least.

The pop-up ads on Kathy’s site are now literally working to protect the privacy of her child and her child’s friends, at least.

Who cares that the instruction manual says to wash all the dust and crud off of all the 260 pieces of the hutch after taking them out of the boxes? If Toddler Carbz can handle a little yellow spray paint and chardonnay in utero, mystery dust and petrochemical smoke from picturesque Guangdong* is nothing.

I am really sorry for my shitty Google Translated Chinese. It's supposed to say "Are you supposed to change diapers on this shelf? How idiotic."

I am really sorry for my shitty Google Translated Chinese. It’s supposed to say “Are you supposed to change diapers on this shelf? How idiotic.”

While the children were playing in, I don’t know, the perfect flow of aerosolized melamine or whatever, Kathy “and” Bath Matt made meal-planning-service dinner:

….chicken thighs with rice (which I pesto-fied instead of pilafed) and cabbage. The cabbage was a lovely delicious surprise with great garlicky flavor! Cook Smarts recommended lemon and greek yogurt, and they were great additions to the meal.

Why is Poison Ivy's bra on the table?


I’m guessing that “pesto-fied” means she plunked a frozen cube of pesto from 2013 onto the rice instead of using the obvious onion that would have been required for rice pilaf, but leave it to Kathy La Misteriosa to not explain any of that. She then decides to tell us both how fancy she was on Tuesday morning and what an inconvenience her child is, by saying they

dined on scrambled eggs (which he requested and then wouldn’t touch)

I would rather have whatever the "Pub Diet" from Crapplebee's than whatever made that bread look like carbception.

I would rather have whatever the “Pub Diet” from Crapplebee’s is than whatever made that bread look like carbception.

In addition to recording, for posterity, yet another time when she’s decided to see something her 2-year-old son has done as inconvenient, Kathy capitalizes “Pomegranate,” which is dumb because she always says “greek yogurt” and “french toast” and the shift key exists for a reason. However, overall, this new format where she talks about whatever for a few paragraphs is as bracing as a cold smoothie in a bowl tipped over one’s head, to which I offer a sincerely slow-clapping thank you to Our Kerfiness. The emoticons and exclamation points are still freaking everywhere, but trying not to treat every day’s entry like it’s a fucking book report on The Andromeda Strain, and forcing Guest RDs and endless lists of everything she ate in a given week has put a magazine-walking pep in Kathy’s written step and a Bare Minerals glow on her selfied cheeks. Or maybe I just like being able to recap shorter posts.

*No, I have no idea where in China that ugly hutch in which her stupid cheese box does not fit perfectly was manufactured.