ANNOUNCEMENT: New Impulsive Buy Reviewer Erin

Well this is exciting and slightly awkward. I get to introduce myself! Hello! My name is Erin, and I’m so bad at introductions that when they occur in person, whoever I’m meeting usually ends up thinking my name is Karen. I’m then faced with the difficult decision of correcting them or just pretending to be Karen for the rest of the time we know each other. Thankfully I’m a little better at writing than speaking, so that shouldn’t be a problem here.

For as long as I can remember of my thirtyish years on Earth, I’ve been obsessed with food, specifically snack food and its packaging. I’m the youngest child of a fairly large family, so growing up I did a lot of grocery shopping with my mom, spinning the Kool-Aid rack and scrutinizing the cereal section for the best prize. The grocery store is still one of my favorite places, and I spend an unnatural amount of time wandering the aisles and taking in what’s new and who’s updated their labels. I probably should have pursued a career in food marketing or writing or something, but instead, I wound up as a dog walker. The beauty of this is that it affords me the opportunity to work from 11 a.m to 3:30 p.m. and spend the rest of my time doing whatever I feel like, which is usually reading about new Pringles flavors.

I enjoy cooking and baking and do both frequently, but it’s still common to find me eating Kraft Dinner and dinosaur-shaped chicken nuggets once a week because that is a perfectly acceptable meal and not just for a five-year-old. I tend to give away most of what I bake because while homemade things are delicious, I also need to save room and calories for the next seasonal variety of peanut butter cups.

I was born on the East Coast, and both sides of my family are from the Coal Region of Pennsylvania. I’m strongly of the opinion that the best pretzels come from PA, and it was there that I learned to love Tastykakes and American cheese on pizza. It doesn’t belong on every pizza, but don’t knock it till you’ve tried it. If you do try it and choose to knock it an hour later when you’re still scraping cheese off your teeth, fair enough. I moved to Chicago about fifteen years ago, and it’s been home ever since. It’s a great city for food and a great city in general.

If you take me on a road trip, I’ll spend too long in every gas station making sure I’ve seen all the regional chip brands. I’m deeply disturbed by the closing of Long John Silver’s restaurants. I might be the only person that misses tan M&M’s. Sometimes I go through my kitchen cabinets and realize I’ve accidentally accumulated four pounds of Arby’s sauce packets. If these sound like qualities you enjoy in a person, I think we’ll get along great. As a long-time Impulsive Buy reader, I’m excited to have the chance to review and share my thoughts with this awesome community. Bring on the snacks!

33 thoughts to “ANNOUNCEMENT: New Impulsive Buy Reviewer Erin”

  1. There is a Long John Silver’s in Norwood or Dedham, MA! And I know several people (including me!) who still miss the tan M and Ms. They definitely tasted best!

    1. What’re the chances that someone else reading this blog lives near me? I have lived in Braintree the past 6 years and just recently moved near Taunton!

    2. So I’m not the only one! Next time you’re at Long John Silver’s please order extra crumblies and ring the bell for me!

  2. Welcome, Erin (or is it Karen?!). You sound perfect for Impulsive Buy. I’ve also always been obsessed with food and food packaging. When I go on trips, the first thing I want to do is go to the closest grocery store and check it out.

  3. Hi Erin!
    As a fellow food-obsessed lover of forgotten M&Ms flavors (I’m looking at you, White Chocolate Candy Corn!) and a dog lover, I like you already and can’t wait to read your reviews. Your first one on Canada Dry Bold just posted was terrific. And I promise, I won’t call you Karen!

  4. Howdy Erin! Welcome to the show. Your food obsessions are shared by many, including myself. Look forward to reading your submissions, and love The Impulsive Buy.

  5. Looks like you are gonna fit right in–you are with your ‘peeps’, haha! So far, so good. Your intro was perfect–I like you already–that’s a proper introduction. Eating, writing, and reading. What else is there, after all?!?! A big welcome from me.

  6. Whereabouts in PA did you grow up? I lived there for 35 years before moving to Massachusetts! I grew up an hour away from Penn State University.

    1. Pennsylvania and Massachusetts are well represented here today! I moved a few times growing up but all of my family is originally from Shamokin, PA so that was always kind of home base. I haven’t been back in a while and am way overdue for a visit, I miss it!

      1. I’m from Altoona, PA!!! Home of the (in)famous Altoona Hotel pizza, Benzel’s pretzels and Boyer Mallo Cups. Nice to see fellow central Pennsylvanians here! Welcome to the Impulsive Buy reviewer family and I’m looking forward to reading more of your reviews.

  7. Welcome, Karen! 😉 And great first (?) review there of Canada Dry Bold Vanilla Ginger Ale.

    I, too, am a Tastykakes fan (give me a butterscotch Krimpet any day), being the Midwest son of Philadelphia refugees–I used to scope out the area Walgreens stores for when they received their weekly Tastykakes delivery, and when Walgreens no longer stocked them and Tastykakes itself abandoned its online store (*why* would they do that?!), was so relieved to find Tastykakes being sold via

    Looking forward to many tasty reviews by you!

    1. Thank you! We used to have a pretty good Philly cheesesteak spot by me that also sold Tastykakes for a while. I don’t know why they stopped the online store! I’m lucky to have an aunt back in PA that regularly sends me boxes of butterscotch krimpets and peanut butter kandy kakes (which earns her favorite aunt status)!

      1. My continuous Father’s Day gift back to my Dad, once I discovered Tastykakes at likewise, boxes of Krimpets. 🙂

    1. Thanks Tamme! Years ago I came here for a weekend visit and liked it so much that a month later I moved here permanently!

  8. Hello, and welcome, from Wilkes Barre! Totally with you on the best pretzels coming from PA, and also the Tastykakes and American cheese on pizza love 🙂

  9. Welcome Erin,

    I am from Scranton, PA. American cheese on pizza is the best! I know what you mean about spending hours looking at things in the grocery store. I could spend so much time in Wegmans and still not see everything. Can’t wait for your reviews!

  10. Thanks so much everybody! I really appreciate all the welcomes and can’t wait to bring you some more reviews!

  11. When you said that you ate Kraft Dinner, I thought that you were Canadian, because that’s what we call their mac and cheese.

    1. For some reason if I’m eating the original elbow shaped noodle variety I call it Kraft Dinner, if it were any of the other shapes I’d call it macaroni and cheese. This doesn’t make a lot of sense, I think it might be because the word “dinner” was more prominently displayed on the box back in the day? Good to know I’ll fit in in Canada!

    1. I feel like those are the hardest to find! Even when I stumble across a store selling other varieties they don’t usually have those.

    2. See the post below re coconut Tastykakes availability via Amazon, for when that mood strikes. 🙂

      1. Thanks Mike! By the way, I bet your dad really looks forward to the Father’s Day krimpets! Excellent tradition!

  12. Welcome, Erin. Former Allegheny County resident here. Out in the Sheetz side of the state. Missing all the MTO stuff there. Never made it to Wawa’s, though I had family in Montgomery County, near Phila. American cheese on pizza is something I’ve always pondered, but never seen (but on an online menu of a pizza place in Wisconsin. Go figure).

    I loved me some tan M&M’s as well. Not sure your opinion of the Skittles debacle, but I’ve always been #teamlime, and am glad lime is back in the original lineup.

    Have fun. I adore junkfood but my body doesn’t. Looking forward to living vicariously through you and the rest of yinz.

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