You’re Single. You Live Alone. Are You Allowed To Have A Coronavirus Buddy?

Epidemiologists weigh in on whether it’s safe to see a “closed circle” of friends during the pandemic.

The coronavirus pandemic has made one thing painfully clear for many single people and people who live alone: The most precious commodity these days is human contact.

Under social distancing, the “haves” are those lucky humans who’ve got kids, partners, or roommates. Yes, they may be loud and exhausting and downright crazy-making at times. But a warm body is a warm body. To the “have-nots” who are isolated in their homes for days or weeks on end, this can seem like an incredible luxury. A Skype call just isn’t the same as in-person company.

So over the past couple weeks, I’ve heard some of these have-nots asking: What if I create a “closed circle” of friends who are all healthy, and we only hang out with each other? Say I decide to see only one friend, and I know that she’s only seeing one other friend, who’s only seeing her. Then we have a loop of three people who can still have dinner together sometimes, so we’re not maddeningly lonely. Is that okay?

It’s an important question, because even before the coronavirus came along, loneliness was a silent epidemic, afflicting millions around the world. A meta-review of 70 studies found that loneliness increases your risk of premature mortality by 26 percent. Some experts say it’s as bad for your longevity as smoking. We know that it actually hurts our white blood cells.

Isolation can also be very harmful to people’s mental health, triggering or exacerbating conditions like anxiety, depression, and suicidal ideation. So while we absolutely need to follow social distancing rules as laid out by public health authorities and local governments, we should also ask what we can do to mitigate the “social recession” they’re causing.

With this in mind, I called a few epidemiologists to ask: For people who are really struggling with isolation, is forming a “closed circle” of friends a safe and acceptable strategy? The experts explained why, unfortunately, it’s not as good an idea as you might think. Their answers, edited for length and clarity, are below.

Krutika Kuppalli, infectious diseases physician, Johns Hopkins University Center for Health Security

Look, I’m single, and I get how hard it is. I went through a 21-day quarantine back in 2014 when I came back from West Africa after treating Ebola. It’s extremely hard.

But I personally wouldn’t feel comfortable doing something like this because I don’t know where my friends have been. You have to think about the other people, what potential risk factors they have, and how much you trust them.

I’m an infectious diseases doctor, so by nature I don’t think people tell me the truth. I never fully believe people. My background was in HIV, and I can’t tell you how many times my patients would come in and their test would come back positive and they’d say, “I don’t know how it got there, it just got there!” Or any of my other patients, I’d ask them about their sexual histories, and then I’d test them and they have gonorrhea or chlamydia and again they say, “I don’t know how it got there!”

This is a human behavior. You have to gauge how comfortable you feel with that, because there’s going to be a risk. You might trust your friend, but how much do you know the friend they’re seeing? Can you trust them? You’re putting your life in their hands at that point.

And the problem is, the data shows that there can be presymptomatic or asymptomatic transmission. I don’t want to be exposed to someone who may not be having symptoms but can get me sick.

I understand it’s hard to comply with these measures, but at the same, we’re talking about life and death here. I’ve seen what happens when people don’t adhere. I’ve seen people die.

So I would say it’s not okay. When someone says, “Stay at home,” I’m like, yeah, just do it. Myself and my colleagues are busting our butts on the front lines to take care of patients right now. And all I’m asking you to do is stay at home and not go out. I don’t think that’s too much to ask.

Carolyn Cannuscio, social epidemiologist, University of Pennsylvania

This is the kind of idea that sounds better in theory than it works out to be in reality. All of us as human beings are flawed. We set out with great intentions but … it’s complex for human beings to actually follow through on those kinds of promises.

Entering into these relationships is complicated and it’s opening up the potential for risk of transmission. So I’m not going to make a blanket statement that this is a safe thing to do. I would prefer that people not socialize outside their household.

I feel like people are looking for the magic loophole that will allow them to live as normal a life as possible. It’s very difficult to grant that absolution because any social interaction outside your household unit, even if it’s as simple as going to the grocery store once a week, does involve a non-zero risk.

But recognizing that this could go on for a long time, I worry about suicidality and extreme forms of mental illness. I struggle with this because I know of people who are extremely lonely right now and really suffering. That’s important, too. We all have to go through this calculus of balancing risks and benefits. … Our drive is to dramatically reduce our social interactions, and I’m positive that for most people, if they interact with only one other human, that will be a dramatic reduction in their social interactions.

But [if you’re going to interact with one other person], be very explicit about what the agreement is, and try to choose someone who’s got [a similar level of risk]. If you’re a writer and can work from home, ideally your friend would also be somebody who’s able to work from home, not an emergency medicine physician.

Let me give you an example of something else a student of mine decided to do. She lives alone in Philadelphia and her best friend also lives alone in Philadelphia. They each isolated themselves for two weeks and then moved in together for the duration [of the pandemic].

I like that plan so much more than the other plans I’ve heard of, because then you’re in constant communication with the other person and you’re aware of anything they need to do to break the protective bond. It’s easier to have an ongoing conversation about preventative strategies when you’re living with the person. If people are living separately, one person might forget to update the other.

Saskia Popescu, senior infection prevention epidemiologist, Honor Health hospital system in Arizona

If you interact with vulnerable people — elderly, immunocompromised — I would discourage you from doing this. Just stick to FaceTime and Skype.

That being said, at its crux, social distancing doesn’t mean you need to stay home by yourself in a dark room. Really it’s about keeping to small, small groups of people. So if you have dinner with a friend, that makes sense as long as it’s just you and them.

For people who are going to have those one-on-one friend hangout sessions, it shouldn’t be, “I’m going to have five one-on-one sessions with five different people” — that defeats the purpose. Really limit it to just one friend.

Also, really limit that exposure. That means, try to FaceTime as much as possible and then make [seeing each other in person] a very special thing for when you’re both really needing it. If you’re doing it two or three times a week, you’re increasing the risk of exposure for both of you.

If you want to be an awesome coronavirus epidemiology buddy, do it every 14 days, because that’s the incubation period. You’d want to do that from the last known date of exposure. That includes going to the grocery store, because theoretically anytime you go into an environment with a lot of people, there’s more potential for exposure to the disease. Then you want to ask each other, “Have you been symptom-free for 14 days? Have I? Yes? Okay.”

Harm reduction is a really big piece of this. All the infection control measures [like staying at least six feet apart] are really important during these interactions. They should wipe down their surfaces before you come over and also clean after you leave. Try to be somewhere open [in the outside air, like a backyard]. Don’t share eating utensils. Don’t touch your face. Wash your hands. And if you start to get sick within a couple weeks of seeing them, you need to notify them. That transparency is really big.

So, what’s the bottom line here?

This is not the news anybody wants to hear, but the idea that you can safely form an airtight circle of healthy friends is unsound, for three main reasons.

First, you and your friends will each have some baseline risk of exposure from going to get necessary items like groceries, or even from traveling across the city to visit one another. And it’s possible that one of you will get sick but show no symptoms. So the notion that any of us can proclaim ourselves healthy with certainty is, unfortunately, a fiction.

Second, not everyone in your circle will necessarily have the same fidelity as you, so the risk is probably higher than you think. Many STD studies show that the idea of safe circles is a fallacy because human beings sometimes cheat on their social contracts and lie about it, or they forget to make certain key disclosures.

Third, forming these circles would be unsustainable on a population level. Even if each circle has only a small risk of transmission, that risk increases exponentially if lots of us are forming these circles. The best way to lower both your individual risk and the population-level risk is to simply stay home.

That said, all the experts I spoke to acknowledged that total self-isolation can also have very harmful effects, and we each need to weigh those harms against the benefits. If your friend who suffers from depression is having a mental health emergency, it may well make sense to visit them. But if you simply miss your friend and feel a bit lonely? Maybe just play a game like Codenames over Zoom. Or use an app like Netflix party to arrange a virtual group hangout where you can watch great movies and TV shows with your friends. Don’t convince yourself that an in-person interaction is necessary when it’s not.

Remember that although a couple of experts cracked the door open to seeing a friend when it’s truly needed, it is just that — a crack — and the overwhelming takeaway is that the risk is still too great.

Going for a walk with a friend is fine, all the experts agreed, as long as you stay 6 feet apart. It’s probably better to interact outdoors than indoors, because more air ventilation means less of a chance that you’ll breathe in virus-carrying droplets.

If, after reading this, you’re still set on having human interaction that extends beyond a stroll, you’d do well to limit yourself to just one coronavirus buddy for the duration of the pandemic and commit to observing all of the precautions outlined above.

And if all this feels too difficult, bleak, and unrewarding, keep reminding yourself that the better we do at social distancing now, the sooner we can get back to normal life — with extra hugs and elaborate dinners and dance parties galore. “This is a temporary measure,” Popescu said, “and if we can just be super vigilant right now, then we’ll be able to move past social distancing.”


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Phicklephilly – Weekly Horoscope

I’m trying something new… Thoughts?

All Signs

Power struggles are likely this week because the Sun is at odds with Pluto. This forces us to make radical changes in our lives. We have to let go of patterns of behaviour that are no longer valid. (Hey, if you keep holding on to a hot pot — you burn your hands!) With the breakdown of machinery and organizations, we have to straighten out situations that aren’t working. But as we start to fix them, and we see we’re capable of doing this, little by little, we build our confidence to meet our future. Abe Lincoln said, “The best thing about the future is that it comes one day at a time.” Of course, there will always be the past. When I think of my past, I realize I was shorter and I weighed less.

Aries (March 21-April 19)

Once a year, for four weeks, the Sun is in your sign, which rejuvenates and energizes you. You still have this blessing for one more week until next Sunday (April 19). Yay! Therefore, be grateful for this extra boost of strength! Meanwhile, Mercury, the planet of communications, is also in your sign; while your ruler Mars is in the part of your chart related to friends and groups. This powerful combo makes you proactive, forceful and ready to put your cards on the table. You will sway others with your words. But like Spiderman, you must remember, “With great power comes great responsibility.”

Taurus (April 20-May 20)

You’re keeping a low profile. Nevertheless, you’re active because Mars at the top of your chart makes you ambitious, and fair Venus in your House of Earnings attracts money to you. This is why those of you who are shopping online at home are buying beautiful things for yourself and loved ones. Because of the placement of Mercury and the Sun in your chart, this is an excellent week to do research. You will discover solutions to old problems and answers to old questions. Use this behind-the-scenes advantage because in a week, everything will change dramatically for you when the Sun enters your sign. All hail Taurus!

Gemini (May 21-June 20)

No matter what restrictions you are labouring under this week, you actually feel socially inclined. Because friendships and groups are important, you will examine the role that they play in your life. If you have a chance to work in cooperation with others, you will find this to be rewarding. With Venus in your sign, it’s easy to make peace with others. (You want to avoid fighting.) Venus ranks pleasure above work. Nevertheless, your creative vibes are hot, especially your interesting, intellectual ideas. This helps you to influence others and make a great impression on them. (“How do you get to Carnegie Hall?” “Practice!”)

Cancer (June 21-July 22)

For one more week, the Sun will be at the top of your chart. (This happens for only four weeks once a year, and when it occurs, you are royalty! People admire you now even if you don’t do anything extra special. Nevertheless, do not pretend to be something that you aren’t because eventually the truth will come out. (It always does.) A wise use of this advantage is to be a quiet leader for those who are nervous and unsure in these troubled times. You are a nurturer. You can reassure people that there is a future. Reassure them not to be paralyzed by the negative. Disagreements about jointly held resources and shared property are likely. On the other hand, your heightened sex drive might move this over.

Leo (July 23-Aug. 22)

Mixed messages exist for you this week. Mars opposite your sign will create tension and conflict with those who are closest to you. (This lasts until May 15. Patience!) You might also be in conflict with an open enemy, which means repressed grievances are out in the open. Countering this however, Venus is in your House of Friendship will create friendly relations with almost everyone. (Friendship brings love and love brings friendship.) In normal times, you would love to travel because you want to broaden your horizons. However, you can do this film, books and the Internet. You might also explore writing, finishing a manuscript or finish that screenplay?

Virgo (Aug. 23-Sept. 22)

The last few weeks have been intense, and this coming week will also be intense. However, the good news is that after this week, things will lighten up for you. Your focus on debt, insurance issues, taxes and shared property will take on a better perspective. This week, you’re psyched to work hard at whatever you’re doing. In fact, you will delegate duties to others as well. Because you look like you know what you’re doing, someone will ask for your creative advice about how to make something look more attractive. Meanwhile, some of you might develop a crush on an authority figure or a boss. (Let’s face it, a rich spouse is a great labour-saving device.)

Libra (Sept. 23-Oct. 22)

The last few weeks have been exhausting. Courage — one more week to go. Grab every chance to get more sleep and more rest because you need it. One advantage that this week gives you is that you can learn more about yourself through your one-to-one relationships. Be objective. Think about how well you fill your partner’s needs, and how well they do or do not fill yours. Obviously, for your own benefit, you must be as good for your partner as he or she is for you. When Gandhi said, “You must be the change you want to see in the world” – this applies to relationships as well. If you want to be loved – be lovable and be loving.

Scorpio (Oct. 23-Nov. 21)

You like to be productive. You’re no slouch. Right now, the stars are giving you one more week where you have energy and focus to work to get better organized in almost every aspect of your life. Use this to your benefit because it won’t always be this easy. One thing is certain, as you tackle the tasks that need to be done, you will experience immediate gratification. Admittedly, many of you are working according to someone else’s wishes or needs, especially because many of you are in medicine or crime prevention. Increased activity on the home front will bring two results: You will get more done but you might also experience domestic strife. Cool your jets. With your will power and self-discipline, you can be the “good example” at home.

Sagittarius (Nov. 22-Dec. 21)

Freedom and physical activity are survival issues for Sagittarius. More than any other sign, you find home isolation a challenge. Actually, after this week, you will be calmer because you will focus more on work or certain activities. But for this week ahead, enjoy playful times with kids! Enjoy relationships with your main squeeze because they will be lighthearted. Tap into your creative resources because it’s relatively easy to do this right now. Relations with partners and friends are warm; and you have no trouble expressing yourself to others. In fact, because you identify so strongly with your ideas, you are kinda argumentative! Lighten up.

Capricorn (Dec. 22-Jan. 19)

You might find it tough to be isolated at home but the truth is you can handle this better than other signs. You have the discipline to do what it takes. Furthermore, you are community minded and will work on behalf of the benefit of others. Many of you are tackling home projects and DIY repairs. You might have increased responsibilities with a parent. You will be concerned with money because security is important to you. In fact, money disputes might take place at this time. The good news is your health is favoured. In close relationships, you are more concerned with practical matters and how to be useful, which is a good thing.

Aquarius (Jan. 20-Feb. 18)

You’re feisty right now because fiery Mars is in your sign along with Saturn. In addition, both Mercury and the Sun are in your House of Communications. This means you have energy and drive plus the desire to enlighten others and interact with everyone around you. The tempo of your days has accelerated and you’re restless! Do what you can to get physical exercise so that you can blow off any pent-up steam that is building up within you – because this is happening. Fortunately, Venus is in a lovely place in your chart this week. Venus will promote relations with children and encourage good times for games and lighthearted activities. You will enjoy expressing yourself through fun activities because you want to have good time!

Pisces (Feb. 19-March 20)

You definitely have money, earnings and your finances on your mind right now. You’re also thinking a lot about your possessions and what you own and what really matters. This is a good time to go through what you own (yes, this includes your shoes and boots) and get rid of what you don’t really need. Go through cupboards, garages, storage areas and closets and try a Marie Kondo approach to everything. You’ll love yourself later if you do this because this is the time for you to get rid of “deadweight” in your life. This is not loss. Au contraire! It’s lightening up! Meanwhile, enjoy redecorating your digs and making where you live look more attractive. (Do yourself this favor.)


Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

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12 People Share The Self-Care Tips That Got Them Through Their Breakups

Beyoncé once sang, “Me, myself, and I, that’s all I got in the end, that’s what I found out. And it ain’t no need to cry, I took a vow that from now on I’m gonna be my own best friend.” Honestly, she was onto something. Self-care after a breakup is crucial. And while you don’t have to go through your breakup recovery process alone, it is helpful to learn how to “be your own best friend” by nurturing yourself with the love and compassion you’d show one of your own homies going through a breakup.

Maybe you’re parting ways with your ex because you’ve consistently put their needs above your own, and it’s high time you take care of yourself. Maybe your visions for the future didn’t align, or you struggled to make time for each other. At the end of the day, whatever reason you had for ending your relationship (especially if you never thought you’d have to get over this partner) can be heart-wrenching. When the dust settles, make like Beyoncé and commit to nurturing yourself. If you’re not quite sure how to start doing that, here are self-care tips from 12 people who got through their own breakups.

Balance Time For Yourself With Socializing

Giving high five. Two friends giving high five to each other after cleaning the apartment

I gave myself a couple of days of my usual self-care routine (alone time, calming music, food I loved, candles, a nice shower, either a good show or reading material, maybe a face mask) and I let myself cry. Writing my emotions helped a lot. It helped me process everything better. And then I made sure to plan fun activities with my friends. I forced myself to participate in social things with people I loved, to remind myself that this person isn’t going to change the amount of love I have in my life. It helped me secure the love I have for myself.

— Daphne, 22

Practice Gratitude (& Update Your Facebook Settings)

One: Reach out to friends. Isolating [yourself] is probably the worst thing you can do and will make you feel even more alone. Two: Start a Notes file on your phone and commit to writing three things you’re thankful for each day. On bad days, go back and read through. Three: [Change your settings on] Facebook and Instagram so that memories from the time you were together won’t come up on the throwback feature. It sucks when these show up out of nowhere.

— Mijal, 25

Mute Your Ex For However Long You Need

I temporarily mute[d] him from all my social media. I didn’t un-mute him until I was fully over the situation, even though he reached out sooner than that. The mute button saves lives.

— Taylor, 24

Be Introspective, However That Looks For You

Thoughtful female foxy author looking out of window while drinking tasty aroma coffee and thinking about plot of book,pensive student dreaming and enjoying autumn weather sitting on windowsill

Journaling. So much journaling. Even just before the actual breakup, when things weren’t good and I felt like I was overwhelmed with feeling everything. Also, tarot videos were useful sometimes. [It was helpful] more for the soothing voice of readers and shuffling of cards and the focus on self-introspection than tangible “breakup” tips, as well as learning about something new to me.

— Ruby, 28

Learn Something New

Journaling, practicing gratitude, making mantras to repeat to myself, writing [my feelings] out in poetry, networking and going full force into career advancement, [but also] spending down time on educational content like LinkedIn Learning, TED talks, and books.

— Lorena, 22

Pick Up An Exciting Hobby

I started boxing. I had done it a bit before the breakup, but after it, I was ready to rumble. I got really good, really fast, and am now dedicated to it much more than I was to my ex.

— Faith, 20

Address Your Anger

I stand up for myself. Everyone said that time was the ultimate and sole healer, but I’m never able to fully move on until I make clear to the ex where they’ve done me wrong or why I’m angry.

– Sarah, 24

Just Let Yourself Feel

Young beautiful mixed race woman at the bus stop listening music - commuter, technology, music concept

For me, the self-care that helped the most after my breakup was the mental self-care of allowing myself to feel whatever I needed to feel in that moment. I chose not to feel the pressure to label us as distinctively “broken up” and to move on very quickly, and instead allowed my ongoing friendship with this person to flow and change as time went on. This sometimes required some stern internal pep talks, but the basics of it was just constantly reminding myself that we don’t have to fit into a box or prescribed timeline.

— Jessi, 22

Lean On Your Friends

I remember the night of the breakup, I had friends call me one after the other while I just cried on the phone with them. Then my best friend and I sat in the McDonald’s parking lot for like two hours while I just focused on the negatives and realized [my relationship] wasn’t for the best. A friend suggested writing a letter but to not sending it to them…

I’ve always been afraid of leaning on my friends too hard, but this made me realize that I can lean on them and they’ll support me during one of my most difficult times. I’ve never felt more loved and it made me realize that I’m not alone and I am so loved. It eased a lot of the heartbreak.

— Cher, 23

Know You Don’t Have To Throw Your Ex’s Stuff Away

I had a lot of stuff left over from our relationship and most people say to burn it or throw it away, but I’m sentimental and someone recommended putting it in a box out of sight and to go through things later. After awhile, I still felt hesitant about throwing things away and one of my friends mentioned the Marie Kondo method: Go through everything, see if it sparks joy and keep it, or thank it and let it go. That really helped.

— Cher, 23

Re-Design Your Space

Cutting and dying my hair. Getting my eyebrows done. Mani-pedi. Buying a new book and some new lingerie. I also buy some candles, do a deep cleaning in my bedroom, and change the aesthetic (move furniture and donate clothes). So, it’s like I never dated them in the first place.

— Nicole, 25

Try Not To Let It Debilitate You

Spend a week being miserable about it if you feel so inclined. I [personally] write, listen to Adele, cry, lay in bed, stare at the ceiling, and try to imagine how I could have saved [the relationship] if I was just a little bit different. Then after a week, I go be with the people I love, even when I’m not feeling up to it. I push myself to feel it all fully, but not let it debilitate me.

— Genna, 21

Remember Who TF You Are

I pretty much got rid of everything to do with my ex and let myself have the time to cry and be angry, before doing a face mask and doing the things that made me happy that weren’t associated with him.

I honestly think one of the most important parts of self-care post-breakup is to let yourself be sad, [but] not be sad forever — because you’re a bad b*tch and you gotta get back out there when you’re ready.

— Ashleigh, 21

With some compassion, patience, and a gentle reminder to do the things that make you feel good in your skin, you can be well on your way to bouncing back from a breakup.



Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

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‘The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck’ and 5 other self-help books to help us get over ourselves

I put together the weekly USA TODAY’s Best-Selling Books list. Whenever I am asked what I do for a living, I invariably get the exact same follow-up question: “What should I read?”

But I have a secret weapon in my back pocket: The list.

Every week I see what books make the list. Some titles flash on the list briefly while others slowly simmer, building an audience over time. It’s the books that slowly simmer that resonate most with readers — emotionally, intellectually or culturally. These are some of the books I recommend.

The latest book I would recommend is a self-help title that tells it like it is.

Why you should read Mark Manson’s book

The book has sold more than 8 million copies and been translated into 43 languages. After debuting briefly at No. 29 on our list in 2016, it fell off for three months then climbed back, returning to the top 50 in March of 2017 and remaining ever since.

Originally pitched as a book for millennials, its influence has extended well beyond. “One of the really surprising things is how universally embraced it has become,” Manson told USA TODAY, “and that was very unexpected and pleasantly surprising. I think it taps into something universal.”

Manson’s approach in “Subtle Art” is direct and honest. The advice he offers is simple and critical, without being condescending. “When you read a self-help book, it is like you are reading the author’s greatest-hits album. … Nobody can relate to that,” explains Manson. “Instead of filling the book with the highest moments in my life, I wanted to fill the book with the lowest moments.”

So he wrote about his girlfriend leaving him, a close friend dying and his parents divorcing. “I wanted to make a point to leave them unresolved,” said Manson. In life “you don’t resolve that stuff. You suffer. And then, as time goes on, you suffer a little less and you learn a couple of things from it, and that’s it. There is no secret. … The whole point of the book is that you have to figure it out for yourself.”

Manson noticed that in most of the countries where the book has resonated there had also been some political crisis or controversy. “I think there are a lot of people that are identifying with that more negative viewpoint.” But he also concedes the book’s popularity could be tied to the technological state of our world.

Thanks to the internet, we live in a world where we have access to almost everything and everyone at any time. As a result, we ask ourselves “what is worth paying attention to and what is worth caring about? Those are fundamentally philosophical questions,” says Manson. “We are all online all day every day and exposed to so much stuff that we need to devote filters to know what to care about. And that fundamentally is what ‘Subtle Art’ is about. It’s how do you create that filter for yourself?”

Manson’s pragmatic and philosophical approach has been influenced by others. Not a huge self-help book fan himself, when asked what one he would recommend, Manson recommended his favorite, “The Road Less Traveled” by M. Scott Peck. Originally published in 1978, “It is all about how choosing the less comfortable path is what is healthiest for us.”

Other self-help book options

“Get Over It!” by Iyanla Vanzant. The author has appeared on “The Oprah Winfrey Show” and as host of Oprah Winfrey Network’s “Iyanla: Fix My Life.” In this book, according to the publisher, Vanzant reminds us that “anything and everything we experience is a function of what and how we think.”

“Ego Is the Enemy” by Ryan Holiday. The writer and blogger writes that while most of us think the main impediment to a successful life comes from the outside world, it is actually, more often, ourselves that get in the way.

“The Four Agreements” by Don Miguel Ruiz. The basic four agreements the author tackles and expands upon in his book are be impeccable with your word, don’t take anything personally, don’t make assumptions and always do your best.

“Man’s Search for Meaning” by Viktor Frankl. Chronicling his life in Nazi concentration camps during World War II, the neurologist and psychiatrist focuses on how one’s mindset affects one’s future and finding meaning in almost any circumstance.

“Daring Greatly” by Brené Brown.Manson has often recommended this book to others. Subtitled “How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, , Love, Parent, and Lead” Brown writes that vulnerability is not a weakness, but perhaps our greatest strength.


Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

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Tales of Rock – Jerry Lee Lewis

Folks… Have I got a week that’s chock full of delicious content for you!!!


With a nickname like “The Killer,” rock pioneer Jerry Lee Lewis was bound to make some waves in his career. And while he certainly did that with wild performances, including the time he set his piano ablaze after becoming incensed at the idea of having to open for Chuck Berry, the biggest scandal of his career happened far from the ivories.

During his 1958 European tour, the British press excoriated Lewis after discovering he’d married his 13-year-old third cousin, Myra Gale Brown, the year before (Lewis was 22 at the time of their marriage). According to Rolling Stone, Lewis attempted to cover up the marriage by telling people Brown was his other cousin, J.W. Brown’s daughter. He also allegedly lied about Brown’s age, but when the truth came out, he became “cocksure and defiant to the point of parading Brown onstage.”

The ensuing media frenzy effectively sapped Lewis’ career, and he spent the next decade descending into drug and alcohol addiction while attempting to rebuild his career by playing at small, local gigs. Meanwhile, Brown was living a life of quiet desperation.

Speaking with The Gwinnett Daily Post, Brown, who has since remarried and now goes by Myra Lewis Williams, described her 13-year marriage to Lewis as “a trial by fire,” “devastating,” and “chaos all the time.” Williams had her first child, a son named Steve Allen, when she was just 14, then a daughter, Phoebe, at 17. Asked what advice she would give to herself looking back, Williams said, “I would tell my young self that life is not always going to be like this. Get through it and it’s going to be better because it was as if I was going to be there forever and it’s never going to change.”




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Vanessa Hudgens Issues Apology For Coronavirus Comments

The actress said her comments were taken out of context.

Actress Vanessa Hudgens has issued an apology after making unsettling comments about the coronavirus pandemic.

During an Instagram Live session Monday (March 16), the Bad Boys 3 actress answered questions from fans including one who mentioned self- quarantines could last until the summer.

“Um, yeah, ’til July sounds like a bunch of bulls***t,” she said. “I’m sorry, but like, it’s a virus, I get it, like, I respect it, but at the same time I’m like, even if everybody gets it, like yeah, people are going to die, which is terrible but like, inevitable?”

Glad to know the respect is there but the intention was clearly not as she tried to backtrack her comments. it was too late as the portion was ripped and shared on other platforms. Critics suggested the actress might be under the influence of alcohol due to her St. Patrick’s Day celebrations on social media.

After the spread of the video. Hudgens issued an apology and mentioned how her comments were taken out of context. She also shared on her IG story that she has remained indoors like everyone else and is taking the pandemic seriously.


Here’s a scenario I thought of when I read this article…
Vanessa: “Hey Charles, I have the coronavirus. But I want to have sex with you. But if you agree, you might catch it and you could die.”
Me: “Well then, that’s a chance I’ll have to take, Vanessa.”

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

Buy Phicklephilly THE BOOK now available on Amazon!

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