Sariah – 2017 to Present -Unveiled

“The editor represents the needs of the company to an author, and the author’s needs to the company, while lying to each about the good intentions of the other.”

I was sitting in my favorite bar Square 1682 on a Monday night. I had just hung out with a friend who had to go, and I figured I’d have one more glass of wine. This attractive Dominican lady came up and asked if the seat next to me was taken.

“Only by you.” I  said.

We start chatting and she says she’s a book editor. Of course this gets my immediate attention because I’d love to turn Phicklephilly into a book and then a TV series. Sort of Sex in the City from the perspective of a gentleman.

The bulk of her industry experience was gathered as an editor at Simon & Schuster and, most recently, a senior editor at Other Press.  Her training began with internships at Penguin and Avalon Books, followed by the Vigliano Literary Agency and Kensington Books.  She’s acquired and edited literary and genre fiction, narrative nonfiction, and books in translation, many of which have become national and international bestsellers and critically acclaimed award winners.  She taught the Editorial Process course for the City College of New York’s Publishing Certificate Program and Simon & Schuster’s Publishing 101 Lecture Series. She has a B.A. and M.F.A. from Sarah Lawrence College and is bilingual in English and Spanish.

I’m impressed and start to tell her about this blog. Her eyes light up as I tell her a few of the experiences I’ve had and she tells me she’d love to read it. I promise to send her the link and we continue to talk.

Sariah is passionate about books. You have to be if you decide on a career in publishing. She’s not doing what she’s doing for the often joked about low salaries. Her story is the same across the board: She comes to publishing with a love of reading, a love of stories and their power to change people’s minds and, through this, (hopefully) the world.  People in the industry are idealists. But her idealist heart eventually beat up against the reality that publishing is a business, and then she has to learn to live in the intersection of art and commerce. Like everything else in life, that intersection can sometimes be unpretty and other times it’s absolutely beautiful.  She spent twelve years in that place and has seen publishing take many twists and turns.

When she was an editorial assistant at Kensington, one the best bosses she’d ever had, the late Kate Duffy, Editorial Director of the Brava imprint, described, somewhat jokingly, an editor’s role as the following:  “The editor represents the needs of the company to an author, and the author’s needs to the company, while lying to each about the good intentions of the other.”  Kate told me there were two ways of going about the job. You’re either a company’s editor or a writer’s editor, and God help you if you’re a writer’s editor. Editors love their books and strive to keep the peace, but the fact that they are salaried employees is never far from their thoughts. She already knew that Sariah would be a writer’s editor.

This leads her to why she became an editor in the first place. Her parents came to New York from the Dominican Republic many years ago, and she is a born and bred New Yorker. She learned Spanish first and spoke it exclusively at home and learned English in school.  In the conclave of Washington Heights, her parents never really learned to speak English, and in many ways she became their eyes, ears, and mouths. She translated everything for them. As an editor, she is responsible for helping writers say what they really need and want to say. She helps authors translate their thoughts for the reading world and she does this by respectfully prodding and questioning, with the understanding that she is temporarily inhabiting someone else’s world. And even though she has an emotional connection to a story, she does her best to remain objective in her comments. Her job is to help refine the writer’s voice, to help the writer clearly and effectively express his or her ideas. The relationship between an editor and a writer cannot be described as purely professional. How could it be? It starts off with Sariah falling in love with a manuscript and knowing she can make it even better.  As many authors will attest, their editors often become their friends, staying in touch long after the books are finished.

After more than twelve years working for publishers, She created her own company because she’d rather work for the writer. My simple truth is that helping people say what they need to say makes me happy. So whether your goal is to be published by a company or to self-publish, she can promise she will do for you what she’s been doing for a long time–Sariah will help you tell your story.

So I’m really excited I met this lovely lady. She may help get me published! I also got a vibe that she was kind of into me. She said she was going to Underground Arts with a friend and maybe I should join them. I was tired and really didn’t feel like going at that point. Being home watching Netflix and smoking a cig sounded like a better idea to me. I felt it better if I emailed her the link to this blog and take it from there.

Who knows? Maybe this could be a serendipity step to publication.

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish Monday through Friday at 8am EST.

Instagram: @phicklephilly    Facebook: phicklephilly

Sun Stories – Sugar (Grand) Daddy

“I can’t find my card. I must have left it on the table when I paid the cable bill.”

I’m working at the tanning salon, and it’s a quiet Tuesday night. This older gentleman, well into his sixties, strolls in with a twenty something on his arm. She looks to be of some eastern European decent. Dark hair and eyes, and dark brown hair. Petite, and cute. I don’t think this chick is his daughter.

She fills out the necessary paperwork. (Her handwriting is atrocious. It looks like that of an eight year old) The older gentleman stands beside her as she decides what kind of tanning package she wants. She settles on a one month all access. (That’s a mid-sized bed deal that runs sixty-five dollars) I ask her cash or card, and she starts digging in her purse.

She’s rifling around in it for a while. “I can’t find my card. I must have left it on the table when I paid the cable bill.”

The old man just steps up and places his credit card down on the marble counter. He nods and I run his card. I thank him, but I notice she doesn’t. She tells me she wants to do a stand up tan.

You can lie in the beds or you can stand up is certain ones. It looks like a big time machine. Big silver cylinder shaped booth. Inside you’re surrounded by fifty-two ultraviolet flourescent tubes that are all two hundred and thirty watts. Each session only lasts a maximum time of nine minutes. You can do less if you want. (I do less!) We put a five-minute timer for you to get ready and do whatever it is you want to do before your session. (Undress, apply lotion, etc.) Once the five minutes is up, the booth lights.

So while she’s in there I figure I can talk to this guy and find out what the deal is with them. He tells me he met her on the internet. So I’m assuming a dating site. I gotta hand it to pops, good job using the internet. He said his wife died twenty-five years ago. I don’t know what he’s been doing for the last quarter century, but he hasn’t met anyone that stuck around. He met Sandy and they started dating. She lives down here in Chinatown. He lives about thirty-five minutes east of here over in New Jersey.

He says she works as a wedding planner. (Not buying it. Not that he’s lying. I think she’s lying to him. Her with that horrible handwriting.) So if she’s downtown, and he’s over in another state, she can pretty much live her life when he’s not around.

He tells me when he started dating her, after a few dates he asked her if she was really sure if she wanted to be with him. “Are you really, really sure?” he said. “Because I don’t want you to simply change your mind about me in a few months from now.”

This poor old guy is in love with her. He’s just a lonely old man. He says when he walks down the street, they sometimes get looks, but he doesn’t care. He feels proud to have her with him.

I totally get it. Having a young beautiful woman on your arm makes older men feel cooler than getting out of an exotic sports car. I’m not getting any younger because I love it too.

But I feel bad for this guy. She’s a good actress. There’s no way she’s into this guy. I mean, he sounds like a really kind gentleman, but I don’t see it. I think it was when she came to a tanning salon to buy a luxury item, and conveniently ‘left her card on the table while paying the cable bill.’

I think this gal is either and escort or a professional sugarbaby. There are certainly plenty of girls here in Philly that are sugarbabies.

She probably uses the ‘wedding planner’ lie to let him know that she’s always busy meeting with clients. I’m thinking those ‘clients’ are other johns. Think about it, she could have several versions of that guy that she’s dating to get meals, money, gifts, and who knows what else?

I just hope this guy is getting to have sex with her, because if he has the money and she makes him happy and provides the GFE,  (girlfriend experience) then more power to him. Sex you pay for is always cheaper than free sex. But in this case she’s costing him quite a bit. I mean, he probably fed her before they came here, there’s the drinks he paid for too. He had to pay for parking down here, and now he just bought her a tanning package. That’s easily a three hundred-dollar night for this guy.

But like I said, if it makes him happy, and she doesn’t break the poor old guy’s heart, then who am I to judge? I never saw the guy again after that first night, but I’ll tell you what I did see.

She continued to come in and tan on a pretty regular basis. She’d roll in on her own. But one time she came in on a Saturday, and I just happened to be at the salon chatting with Trish. (See Trish – 2012 to Present – The She Wolf)

Sandy comes in with two kids! A little boy nine, and a little girl, six. She goes into the stand up unit to tan. She always goes into the stand up unit in room two. That’s the only bed she ever goes to. So leaves the kids sitting on the sofa in the waiting area. Her daughter is adorable. Like a mini version of her mom. She’s also a little chatterbox. She’s chatting and charming some of the other clients that are sitting in the waiting room. The son on the other hand seems like a bit of a weirdo. I don’t know. Something’s off.

At one point he just looks right at me and says: “Do you believe in Jesus Christ?” What do say to a fucking nine-year old kid when he asks you that? Of course, I told him that I did, because you don’t want to go down that path with someone else’s kid. You never want to be the guy that was the one that made a little boy question his christian faith. It just felt weird when he said it about of the blue. I should have said, ‘Speaking of Jesus, your mommy reminds me a lot of Mary Magdelene.’

It was just a little creepy. I hope he doesn’t grow up and say it again to somebody before he pulls the trigger…

I wonder if the grandpa that she’s dating knows she has two little kids? Come to think of it, he said he was nine years old… on Sandy’s profile it says she’s twenty-six. That would mean she had him when she was eighteen and knocked up at seventeen! Teen mom!

 

Another time she came in and after she was finished tanning, I go into the room. I have a spray gun full of sanitizer. I spray and wipe down the unit, clear any detritus left behind by the client, and place a fresh towel in the room. This time I find a Victoria’s Secret sales tag that says 32b on it. It’s from a bra.

On another occasion when cleaning up the room after she was in it I find another Victoria Secret tag. This one is for a pair of panties, size small. What is she doing?

Then I remember that there is Victoria’s Secret boutique across the street in Two Liberty. She’s either stealing underwear and then bringing it over here and ripping the tags off, or she has to change her undies between, “clients.”

The final find was one of the last times she was here. I cleaned the booth and then saw what appeared to be what I thought was some sort of black and white headband in the little basket in the room. I picked up and discovered it was a soiled pair of panties.

Eww. Straight to the trash!

Once the monthly package that Gramps had bought her expired, we never saw her again.

 

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish Monday through Friday, at 8am EST.

Instagram: @phicklephilly    Facebook: phicklephilly

Crazy Dating Stories: Cyra – Revenge Reeks For Mr. Not-So-Hidden Agenda

He drove me to a different bar and insisted I sit down and “drink the taste out of my mouth”.

I met Cyra on wordpress. That’s the platform you’re reading phicklephilly on. She’s also a writer and has her own blog about adolescent behavioral science. Yea. A little heavier subject that my dating blog! We were chatting the other day and she asked if she could give me one of her dating stories for my blog. I’m always looking for good content and love a crazy dating story, so I jumped at the chance.

Take it away, Cyra.

 

I did a summer internship at a museum years ago when I was in college.

After the term ended and I went back to school, I got a call from one of the researchers I worked with over the summer. He wanted to meet and have dinner because he was going to be in the city.

I was really happy about it because I considered this guy a colleague and thought it was really nice of him to want to keep in touch with me. He was about 15 years older than me, but that didn’t matter because this was a dinner between friends. So I thought.

So the day came and he picked me up. He was driving a rented sports car, a little flashy for a guy on a conference trip but ok. He was dressed like a man going for a night at the clubs as well. And I had dressed pretty conservatively.

He suggested we see a movie and I was a little surprised but agreed. He took me to an “alternative” theatre downtown and I sat through 90 minutes of borderline softcore. I could barely look at him when we finally left.

He didn’t seem to notice or care that I was embarrassed and uncomfortable. He just said “Let’s get something to eat.” and lead me to the car. I thought dinner would be us chatting about our work and what’s new in our lives.

He insisted we have drinks before dinner and kept getting the waiter to top up my wine during the meal. He didn’t want to talk about work, he kept trying to talk about the people we worked with. As in who was doing who. I tried to be polite and listened to him talk. He kept trying to toast things to get me to drink more. It was really awful.

The alcohol and the food didn’t mix well. I finally told him I really wasn’t feeling well and had to leave. As we were leaving the restaurant I felt the need to vomit! I had no control. Thankfully I was able to sort of hide behind the restaurant and spew my guts. I was there for about half an hour.

By the end of it I was feeling better but still really weak and woozy.

I assumed that the “date” was over. Now he’d drive me home and leave, disgusted by what had happened. I didn’t care. I was just looking forward to going home.

Instead he drove me to a different bar and insisted I sit down and “drink the taste out of my mouth”.

I knew it was time to leave. I told him I was going to go into the bar and call a cab if he didn’t drive me home immediately. He asked me to come to his hotel room with him instead.

I started to leave but he finally relented and drove me home. Unfortunately, when we got there he tried again to persuade me to go to his hotel room. I was still feeling ill and he delayed me a little too long. I puked all over the floor of the rental car. It smelled like stale alcohol and sour milk.

He started shouting obscenities at me and I finished heaving on the front step of my building. He tore out of the parking lot and almost hit a parked car.

I was really angry and upset when I got home. So I called the police and reported his car as a drunk driver. He was picked up and charged because he was drunk and his car was full of alcohol-soaked puke.
I heard he lost his job over it too. So it was worth it.

 

Wow. Don’t mess with Cyra!

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish Monday through Friday at 8am EST.

Instagram: @phicklephilly Facebook: phicklephilly

Burden in my Hand

“If you want to make a delicious omelet, you’re going to have to break some eggs.”

I’ve been working a lot lately. Frankly I’m feeling a little burned out. But I love to work and get my energy from those around me. I get bored if I’m not doing something productive with my days.

I enjoy my down time though. I love my alone time. My daughter Lorelei is in and out. Normally she’s working and hanging our with friends or spending time with her boyfriend. After work I like nothing more than to come home, sit in my chair, sip some wine and watch my shows on Netflix.

Last night I was just chilling and I look over at my phone and there’s a text on my Facebook messenger.

It’s from Annabelle! (See: Annabelle: 2013 to 2014)

I wrote her series last year. It’s been done and in the can for a long time. It was difficult to write. Writing about my other ex Michelle was a pleasure. (See: Michelle – 2007 to Present – A Brand New Day) But I found that you can live something, you can think about it and talk about it with your friends and family, but until you write it out, you never really resolve your feelings.

Once I wrote about Annabelle, I finally forgave her and let her go.

I haven’t seen her in over 3 years, and the only contact she’s had with me was a happy birthday on Facebook messenger last year. I’m so over Facebook, Instagram and social media in general. I just use it to promote phicklephilly now. I no longer care to show the world what I’m doing, nor do I care what anyone else is doing. The people in my life call me, text me and spend time with me. Real world stuff. Who gives a shit what you’re eating for dinner, or what vacation you’re on. I don’t give a shit about your kids. I don’t want to see your baby. That child who doesn’t even realize that his privacy as an individual citizen has been stolen by you so you can show off.

Get a life and go live it privately.

So I’m chilling at home last night watching my show, and I look over at my phone and there is the message. First of all Annabelle has my phone number she could have simply called me or texted me directly if she wanted to talk to me. But here I get a test on Facebook Messenger.

Apparently she’s been reading phicklephilly and realized that Annabelle is about her. First of all, please follow my blog properly Annabelle. I need followers! You can also “like” and comment if you want to.

Here’s what the text said: (I’ve corrected all of the grammatical errors)

“I hope that your hatred and your venom doesn’t completely fill your memory of me. There was a long time when things were good. Also don’t call my family white trash. The artists that you wrote about in your last account are some of the most successful culture makers in Philadelphia, and mark my words, spend more on one project than you make in a year. And God bless them for the difficult road they have taken. You sound like an asshole, and every time you call yourself a gentleman and make another generalization about women, you reveal your falseness.”

Bitter? Table for one?

I have no hatred or venom for anyone in this world. If there’s one person I should have it for it would be my ex-wife, not for the way she behaved in my life but for the way she treated and hurt my daughter. (I do like that Annabelle used the word “Venom”) I have nothing but good will towards Annabelle. She goes on to say that there was a long time when things were good in our relationship.

I have to disagree. Sorry for the spoiler, but we only dated for around 9 months. The first month or so was courtship and then she was my girlfriend for maybe 7 months after that. Much of the time she was absent even when we were in the same room together. The best parts of the relationship were few and far between for me. I was frustrated, annoyed, and disappointed most of the time. But I still felt love for Annabelle, but I’ve been over it for years. Rarely does she ever cross my mind anymore.

She doesn’t like that I referred to her family as white trash. I suppose that was a bit harsh. But stereotypes are earned by those that get them. You can have a bunch of money and still behave like a hillbilly.

The only way I know anything about her family is because she would never let me meet them. I wanted to but she said that I wasn’t ready to meet her family. I remember her actually saying that she even didn’t like her family very much.

Of course that all changed when they kicked in a fortune for her to live in a newly constructed house.

In regard to these “culture makers” she’s referring to, I just don’t see it. Performing silly, poorly written performance pieces does nothing to contribute to the art culture here in Philly. The Walnut Street Theater, Ballet X, (Love!) The Philadelphia Orchestra, The Philadelphia Museum of Art, The Annenberg, and so many more. Who cares how long they spend on a project. Why spend a year of your life making trash? It’s just not any good. I’ve seen several of their shows and it’s just silly cabaret that feels forced and tragically outdated. I think they need God’s blessing for the foolish and wasteful path they’ve all chosen in their poverty-stricken lives. Just the grinding sadness of approaching middle age and never to have held down a real job or ever learned a prosperous vocation.

She says I sound like an asshole. I’ve gotten this before about the blog from these “raging feminist types.” Someone calling me an asshole or a misogynist either don’t know me or are too dumb to understand what they’re reading on my blog. 80% of my followers are women and they are the most loyal and outspoken on phicklephilly. I am proud to have a strong female following of bright, sharp women that can think for themselves and understand what’s real in the world and what’s truly important in their lives. I’ve recently added a female author to my blog. She owns every Saturday for the next year!

Annabelle also says that every time I call myself a gentleman and make generalizations about women I reveal my falseness. (Does anybody even use the word “falseness?” It sound like something she read somewhere.

Here’s the thing. If anybody should know what a gentleman I am, it should be Annabelle. All of the romantic gestures I showered her with, standing up from my chair when she left or entered a room, opening the door, pulling out her chair for her, putting on her coat for her, all the dinners I cooked for her, the surprises, the gifts, etc. Annabelle had never, EVER been treated as well as I treated her. She still communicates and is friends with a former lover that used to knock her around when he was angry. Who’s the asshole now? I’ve never raised my voice or my hand to a woman, EVER. I have 3 beautiful sisters and a daughter that know I am one of the last true gentlemen alive in the world. But how could Annabelle realize that even now? She had the best and she squandered it. My dear friend Robert refers to her as “The Selfish Loser.”

But, I like how Annabelle has crept out of the shadows to secretly read phicklephilly. I LOVE that my art has inspired her to attack me on social media. Because good art makes you feel something. Shitty art is dismissed and forgotten.

In closing, I really don’t want to hurt Annabelle. It’s just a bunch of words on a blog. I have to tell these stories. Writing her series really cleared up a lot of things for me, because as you’ll read in the coming chapters she really did a number on me. She didn’t willfully do it, she just isn’t mature enough to know how bad her behavior is and how it affects those around her. Adults just don’t do that to each other.

There are a few more chapters of Annabelle left and they’re pretty interesting. Thanks to everyone who supports phicklephilly and most of all to Annabelle for inspiring this bonus post!

 

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish Monday through Friday at 8am EST.

Instagram: @phicklephilly    Facebook: phicklephilly

Read me FIRST!! Go on…I’m serious, you know you want to!!

Source: Read me FIRST!! Go on…I’m serious, you know you want to!!

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish Monday through Friday at 8am EST.

Instagram: @phicklephilly Facebook: phicklephilly

Sensuality, Sex & Something Else

I’ve met an interesting lady here on WordPress. She has some great stories to tell. I got her permission to share her blog on Saturdays. If all goes well it should pop up at 8am EST today!

Please, Like, Comment and most of all Follow this cool blog!

Thanks!

Phicklephilly

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish Monday throuh Friday at 8am EST.

Instagram: @phicklephilly Facebook: phicklephilly

Tales of Rock – Zakk Wylde Accidentally Survived A Fatal Disease By Drinking All Of The Time

“Because you are shitfaced, all of the time.”

As a guitarist for Ozzy Osbourne, Zakk Wylde isn’t a stranger to the world of wild partying, it’s fair to say. His last name is literally the word “wild” as spelled by a drunk person. We wouldn’t be surprised to hear that this is the only reason he got into rock music.

However, after a monthlong bout of extreme illness finally forced him to see a doctor, Wylde discovered that he was suffering from a rare blood condition that caused his body to overproduce blood clots, which are things that can suddenly kill you at any moment without warning. Furthermore, he’d been suffering from the condition for several years. Wylde sagely asked how the hell he had managed to stay alive for so long with such a deadly affliction, to which the doctor responded, “Because you are shitfaced, all of the time.”

You see, the treatment for Wylde’s condition involves a course of strong blood thinners, which slow down the rate at which blood clots develop. You know what else thins the blood? Alcohol. Zakk Wylde’s years of being heroically wasted saved his life, although nowadays he’s banned from booze and restricted to taking standard medicine, which we feel is a little unfair to the booze.

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every Monday, Tuesday & Wednesday at 8am EST.

Instagram: @phicklephilly    Facebook: phicklephilly