Habits That Keep You Broke

It is becoming more and more common for people to complain about their finances openly. It is no longer uncommon to hear your friends, family or acquaintances tell you that they are “too broke” for a specific event or purchase. Admitting that inflation has made life extremely expensive for the common man, there are some habits that tend to keep you broke perpetually. This is a state of being that exists regardless of how much wealth you inherit or how much money you earn that arises from consistently maintaining these financially terrible decisions.

Living Above Your Means

In a world where appearing rich has become more important than being rich, most people tend to live above their means. They manage their extravagant expenses on credit cards and other forms of debt, thus leaving them paying a substantial sum towards interest payments while living in constant worry over meeting bill payments.

You Don’t Track Your Money

If you constantly find yourself wondering where all your money went, then you fall into this category. A common mistake people make is not keeping track of their cash flow. Several apps are now available to help you keep track of this by noting your inflow sources, your outflow sources and presenting you with a composite chart of where your money is spent. It is important to know where you spend more of your money in order to be able to know where you can cut down on your spending.

You Remain Lazy About Your Finances

It is common for people to procrastinate with regard to those activities which do not excite them or which do not require immediate attention. Understanding and working about with your personal finances tends to fall into this category and gets pushed over to a stage in life where you’re in financial pain already or have too little money for savings. Keeping track of your finances on a weekly basis is our recommendation.

You Spend Before You Save

A common saying in the Finance World is “Pay yourself first”. This talks about the importance of your first chunk of income being set aside for savings and emergency cushions and the balance amount being used to pay bills and debt. This helps to keep you afloat in all situations as opposed to the strategy of spending lavishly while saving scarcely and erratically.

You Expect Quick Results

Another common mistake you make is that you’re trying to get rich quick. This leads to getting caught up in quick-money scams or dissolving investments at the slightest of losses. Building wealth takes time, patience and perseverance.

You Live In A Consumer’s Mind-set

Consumer Mentality focuses on extravagant purchases of items such as clothing, accessories, cars, boats, etc. However, focus on such purchases leads away from purchases in appreciating assets such as Real Estate, Commodities, Stocks, ad so on. Constantly focusing on consumer purchases rather than investor purchases leaves you happy in the moment but unhappy in the long run. A balance between the two is required in order to live a happy and financially healthy life.

You Are Trying To Impress The World

Thanks to social media and a consumer mentality, everyone’s trying to one-up their followers on Instagram and Twitter with materialistic purchases. Instead of spending wisely, you’d rather post pictures of the expensive shopping spree you went on or the luxury vacation you took, etc. Focusing on your own money goals is more important than impressing others who in turn are trying to impress you with their posts!

You Rely On Your Credit Card Wrongly

Credit cards give you access to purchases even when you don’t have money in hand. One of the biggest mistakes we can make is using our credit cards to purchase items which we cannot afford. This essentially helps us fall into debt traps and keeps us constantly broke.

You Have No Financial Goals

Setting financial goals is crucial as that is what provides you with incentive to implement your financial plans. Choosing to save over spending requires us to prioritize a future need in lieu of today’s desire. This isn’t an easy choice to stick to but can be made easier by knowing that the money you’re keeping aside is for a new house, higher education, a comfortable retirement, etc.

You Don’t Know Basic Finance

No matter how many experts you get on board for help, you must be able to take charge of your money. Knowing the basics of investing, saving and personal finance can make all the difference in your thinking and spending habits.

 

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

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Here’s What Happens To Your Body If You Drink Less Than A Bottle Of Water Per Day

Almost any health-related article contains the magic phrase ‘drink plenty of water’. But what exactly happens if you don’t?

Up to 60% of the human adult body is made up of water. In fact, H.H. Mitchell stated in the Journal of Biological Chemistry that the brain and the heart are comprised of 73% water, while the lungs are around 83% water.

Our bodies use water in all cells, organs, and tissues to regulate and maintain normal function and temperature. It is essential for keeping our kidneys, skin and other organs in top working condition.

You lose more water throughout the day than you realize- your body loses water through sweating, digestion, excretion and even breathing. This means it is crucial to rehydrate by drinking water, as well as by eating foods with high water content.

Downing a specific amount of water is not that high on anyone’s priority list, and unless you are watching a water-intensive film like Aquaman or Moana (watching all that water in high definition had me really thirsty), it’s easy to forget to chug enough water when preoccupied with work and chores.

Some lesser known benefits of staying sufficiently hydrated are:

•    It promotes weight loss by helping to get rid of the by-products of fats while keeping you satiated.

•    It helps form saliva and mucus, which keeps our nose, mouth, eyes, and throat moist while protecting them from damage and friction due to dryness.

•    It is the key to glowing, healthy, nourished skin, by making it less prone to turning dry and wrinkling.

•    It regulates body temperature, especially for those who live in hot climates or are highly physically active.

•    Cartilage in the joints contains water that is necessary for keeping them lubricated and healthy to provide sufficient cushioning and avoid joint pain.

•    Staying hydrated keeps your energy up and your brain working at its optimal level.

•    It keeps your body’s waste disposal system functioning efficiently.

•    It boosts your immune system.

So how much water does one really need?

There is no hard and fast rule to follow when it comes to how much water one must drink.

Water intake is dependent on a lot of internal as well as external factors such as age, weight, gender, activity levels, and temperature of the surrounding area.

A general recommendation is to drink six to eight glasses of water a day, which comes to about 1.5 to 2 liters of water a day. Since most disposable bottles are can hold about half a liter, this means that one must down three to four bottles of water daily.

What happens when you don’t drink enough water?

Your body sends delayed thirst signals to your mind, which unfortunately means that, by the time you become aware of your thirst, your body is already dehydrated.

•    Even mild dehydration (fluid loss of as little as 1-3%) negatively affects energy levels, attention span, motor coordination, and mood, and can lead to significant reductions in memory and brain performance.

•    Your appearance will get affected if you remain dehydrated for an extended period. Skin dulls down and loses its glow, and lips become dry and begin to peel. Your mouth and throat may also feel dry, which can actually cause an increase in caries due to the absence of the natural cavity-fighting effects of saliva. The lack of water can also lead to the undesirable occurrence of bad breath or halitosis caused by a build-up of bacteria in your mouth.

•    When you perform physical activity on a dehydrated body, it can cause you to feel dizzy, faint or exhausted. You will begin to feel constantly tired, even after getting enough sleep.

•    This can also lower the volume of blood in your body. The thicker your blood becomes, the harder your cardiovascular system has to work. Your heart rate and breathing may both increase due to this.

•    Insufficient water also impairs the body’s ability to properly regulate temperature, which increases your body temperature, also known as hyperthermia.

•    Your digestive and excretory systems will be out of whack. This means you will experience the highly uncomfortable side effect called constipation. Furthermore, you won’t pee very often, and when you do, your urine will be darker than usual, as opposed to the standard pale yellow it should be, which is not a good sign.

•    Another somewhat unexpected consequence of insufficient hydration is that you gain water weight. Your body begins to retain as much water as it can, which may make your face and extremities puffy and swollen. This gets resolved when you start to drink a sufficient amount of water again.

•    You may also experience frequent, unexplained headaches. Without the requisite amount of water, your cells will shrink. This can cause your brain actually to shrink from fluid loss, which causes a headache. These headaches can range from mild and dull to severely debilitating but quickly disappear after gulping down some H2O.

•    No one likes it when you’re cranky, which is precisely what you’ll be if you don’t hydrate properly. Not only will people begin to avoid you because of the sudden change in your temperament, but dehydration will also adversely affect your own ability to perform daily tasks and chores.

•    Overeating is a common consequence of being dehydrated. This happens when your mind misinterprets the thirst signals as hunger pangs, causing you to eat more than you usually would. Furthermore, without water to fill your tummy and keep you satiated, you have more space for that extra serving of food.

Here's What Happens To Your Body If You Drink Less Than A Bottle Of Water Per Day

How can you monitor your hydration levels?

Once you have identified if you are dehydrated or not, maintaining proper levels of hydration is easy! Following these steps will help you stay hydrated:

1.    Pay attention to how much you drink: track your water intake for a week by maintaining a daily log. This will help you identify and rectify any shortages in your water intake.

2.    Keep an eye on your peeing habits: It is normal to urinate around 3 to 4 times a day. Any less than that means you have to up your water intake, ASAP. Your pee should also be a pale yellow or clear color.

3.    Carry a water bottle with you wherever you go.

4.    Be aware of how and when you feel thirsty, and be sure to rehydrate as soon as you do to help clean your liver.

 

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

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Phicklephilly Reaches 100,000 Page Views.

We finally did it!

Wow.

Just wow.

I recently published my end of the year (end of the decade) post for New Years. I sort of covered everything that was happening, and everything that’s going to happen in 2020. (Don’t worry. I’m sure there’ll be plenty of surprises!)

I had hoped to end 2019 with 100,000 page views but we fell short before the new year. (We hit 50,000 around Christmas of last year) But I could see with the way things were going that I’d probably hit 100,000 by January of 2020.

Well, here we are!

I suppose I should start by thanking everyone that has supported me since the beginning back in 2016.

First of all, to all of my loyal subscribers I owe you all a debt of gratitude. I really appreciate you taking the time to sign up and receive the daily emails to read my blog. Without you guys I’d probably still be struggling. Knowing there were those out there that cared enough to subscribe meant the world to me.

Then there are all of my regular daily readers. I love all of you too! Koolkosherkitchen, Joliesattic, Righteousbruin9, Ajeanneinthekitchen, porngirl3, Sdeden, just to name a few. You guys rock! I love what you all do and appreciate your words on a weekly basis. Always great comments and thoughts to inspire me.

I’m thinking back now…

All of the failed dates in the beginning. Valerie, June, Katsumi, Scarlett, Carol, Lizzie… You’re all part of this journey. I’m way beyond swiping right or left on anyone now, but I had to do those things to get me here. I appreciate you all for going on dates with me. I’m no box of chocolates anymore and you were all lovely women. I hope you have all found love and are happy now.

I also want to thank the following:

Maria: The kindly waitress who inspired me to start writing about how I felt about her and start this blog. Maria definitely had a certain something that inspired me to write about her. A great girl who struggles with herself but resilient as hell. I hope she’s doing well and has found a suitable career!

Rocco: My co-worker at the newspaper who always said that I should write about all of these women in my life. Rocco is doing well and now works in real estate. I hope you’re  well and happy, Sir! I miss our lunches together.

Church: Thank you for your friendship. You’ve been the inspiration for me to start writing dating and relationship advice back in 2017. As difficult as it is to constantly come up with new subjects to write about it’s become the foundation of phicklephilly as a viable daily publication. On top of all that, you’ve always been a great friend of mine and a cheerleader for my cause. I appreciate you getting it, and supporting me in all of my crazy adventures. Let’s make some new ones in this new decade, buddy! Thank you! (Church just started his own blog recently and I’m sure if he sticks with it, it’ll be a smash!)

Crazy women and toxic people: I appreciate you giving me the foresight to know what I want and what I don’t want in my life. I’ve written about all of you and I hope you’re doing well wherever you all are. The sex was great! Just steer clear of me!

Michelle: Thank you, dear. I never hear from you anymore and I understand why. (Married and baby) You were the love of my life and the very first series I accepted the challenge to compose. I know those stories don’t even begin to scratch the surface of what we had in our relationship, but I will never forget you. Thank you for loving me.

Annabelle: hmm… You get zero fucks, Miss.

Cherie: When I started this blog about dating and relationships I got back into the dating scene after several years of being absent. But within 6 months of its inception, you came into my life. How can I write a dating blog if I have a girlfriend? Well, 60 chapters later and here we are. I appreciate you giving me your heart.

James: Hey, best friend in Philly! I’ve shared so many great times with you. All of our talks, drinks, stories and love of movies is always a blast. You throw the best parties and are one of my favorite people in the world. Thank you for your friendship.

Kita: Thank you for coming into my life. You showed me that I could still get worked up about a new love. We were never really a thing, but I appreciate what you were to me on a weekly basis. I know the relationship was pretty much one sided but I didn’t mind. I was just happy to hang out with you! Our little encounters where absolutely electric and I wish you well, dear!

Johnny R: What can I say about Johnny that hasn’t already been spat out in this blog? I love the man who carries at least 7 vices around with him on a daily basis. You’ve always been an interesting character, and even though I haven’t seen you in over a year, we can always pick up just where we left off and I love that.

Alice: When the old crew that filled this blog with adventures fell away, (moved, left town, of got married) you’ve always been a constant in my life. You’re one of the sweetest people I’ve ever met. I cherish our friendship and am so glad you’re still around. It was an absolute joy to sit in front of the fireplace with you at The Dandelion last month. You’re a delight, and even as I write this, I’m looking forward to seeing you soon and catching up on your stories.

Sabrina: Thanks for being my #1 fan. I know you’ve had some struggles in your life, but you’ve risen above it all in glorious fashion. I’m so proud of you. I know you don’t have many posts about you, but your words always inspire me to push on. I will never forget the day you said: “I love all of your stories. I pretend I’m the women in each story and love all the crazy things you get yourself into!” You’re the best, Sabrina!

Rebecca: I loved our early dates before Cherie, but you slipped away. I get it, but the brief moments we spent together were some of my finest in Philly. You’re a lovely girl and represent all that I want but cannot possess. I always thought you’d be the next big thing after Michelle, but destiny had it’s own plan for us I guess. I wish you well, dear.

Sarika: The prettiest girl I know in Philly. The brilliant, misunderstood scientist nerd who is one of the most unique women I’ve ever met. Thank you for spending all the time you did with me. I’ll never forget all of the parties, events, movies, and museum visits. Congratulations on your recent engagement. He appears to be a good man, and I’m glad that you’ve found happiness. I miss you, but wish you both health and joy!

Dina: I met you when you were 22 and working as an intern at the newspaper. Now you’re my broker and manage all of my money. I love you, and am so happy you’re in my life. I think my favorite thing about you is your acceptance of me. No matter what I did, you always approved and took my side. I will always appreciate your friendship. I recently found out that you’re expecting. That’s going to be one cute baby! Congrats!!!

There are so many other people that have been just great on this journey. I can’t believe I’ve been doing this for over three years! Like I said in my annual New Years blog, it all started with a single post.

if you want to do something, just take the first step. One step. Is that all it takes? NO. Take that first step and keep walking. Let go of the bars of your own prison and simply walk out. Writing has been an incredible liberating experience for me. I discovered while doing this that if you write it down, you’ll work it out. The best therapy for me in my later life has been writing. Maybe for you it’s painting, or music, cooking,or gardening. But whatever it is, please keep doing it. It will carry you forth through this life. 

Writing down all of my thoughts and feelings in this blog have cleared away all of the mist of my past. The clouds of my understanding opened and the sun shown through the darkness and confusion of my existence. By writing down what I experienced, I was able to sort it out and look at it clearly and see the whole picture. What it was. What it meant. Why it worked or failed. There was a calming effect that came with that. It has brought me more wisdom and understanding in my life. When you write it brings forth a document. A document of what has come to pass and what it really meant to you.

I don’t know what else to say at this point, Normally I can waffle on for a good 3000 words. But I’m off from work today and I kind of want to simply rest and bask in the sunlight of my thoughts of you all and how fortunate I’ve been to meet you.

Thank you all so much. I’m extremely grateful.

I’ll leave you with this…

All the money in the world can’t buy a second of time.

Make today count.

 

See you all at 250,000!

 

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

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Oh… One more thing. “Zoolon Forever.”

How to Make Him Want You Sexually: 13 of the Hottest Tricks

You’ve secretly drooled over him, but now it’s time the tables turned. Learn how to make him want you sexually. What’s the trick? Keep reading.

I was always more like the girl that was called “one of the guys.” But then something happened, and one of my male friends ended up being into me. It was a big step for me. So, if you’re thinking to yourself, yeah, but that will never happen to me. It can happen, and it will. You just need to use these tips to understand how to make him want you sexually the next time you’re near a guy you want.

You have no idea how many years I’ve spent gawking over guys who wouldn’t even look at me. Literally, they paid more attention to the trees around me. But back then, I wasn’t really what you would say attractive. I was cute, that’s for sure, but I wasn’t the girl all the guys were staring at.

How to make him want you sexually

When we like a guy, we like them hard. We day-dream about them, spend our nights texting our friends, and creeping their social media *don’t act like you don’t do it*. But that doesn’t get us anywhere. I mean, talking to your friends about him may end up with him finding out through someone.

The chances are he has no idea you like him. Unless you’re like me and eye stalk them until you get dizzy. What can I say, I’m one talented and highly invested woman when it comes to men. But at some point, something needs to happen. Actually, at this point, anything needs to happen.

Now, follow these 13 tricks for how to make him want you sexually. Voila, it’s his turn to want you.

#1 You can make the first move. There’s this idea that women should wait around for men to make the first move, but screw that. Why don’t you go up to him and ask him out? Or be the first one to make a flirtatious comment? You don’t need to wait for him to want you, show him that you want him and see what happens.

#2 Be a tease. Men like to chase; they’re like dogs. Think of yourself as the ball. You just can’t sit there and wait, make him run a bit after you. If you want to make him think of you sexually, you’ll need to tease him and play with his ego *gently, of course*.

#3 Show off your personality. Girl, you have a shining personality, and he needs to see it. Yes, men are visual and get turned on by the female body, but personality can also take you a long way. I don’t have large breasts or a big ass, but I do just fine with men. Why? Because I’m friendly, open, and talkative. I make men feel relaxed and comfortable around me.

#4 But do let him look. As I said, men are visual. They get turned on by what they see. This doesn’t mean you need to dress up in heels and a short skirt though. If he’s checking you out, don’t hide yourself. If you want him to want you sexually, then let him take you all in with his eyes.

#5 Flirt. If you want to make him want you, you’re going to need to create a spark. This is where flirting comes into play. Flirting is what you do to create sexual tension between two people. And once you have chemistry, that’s where he starts to see you as something more than just a friend.

#6 Be touchy. Now, don’t throw yourself on him. It’s too much and can be a huge turn-off. But when you’re talking to him or when he’s making a joke, don’t be afraid to touch him. You can lightly touch his arm, shoulder, or his leg. Mix the physical contact with flirting, and you have a deadly combination.

#7 Play a little hard to get. Now, he’s not climbing Mount Everest, so, you don’t need to be that hard to get. But you should make him work for it. If you’re too available, it won’t hold the same significance for him than if you were a challenge. He needs to know you’re worth it, and by making him work a little hard, he’ll see it.

#8 Use your eyes. Eye contact is huge, and people often ignore their importance. But in reality, we use our eyes to communicate with people every day. Be flirtatious with your eyes. Hold the contact for a little longer than normal; it’ll show him that you’re interested in him.

#9 Don’t show too much skin. Of course, if you like showing skin then that’s fine, but sometimes showing less skin can be more sexually arousing for men. You’re not giving him everything he wants right there. He needs to use his imagination which builds up the sexual tension.

#10 Find common interests. If you want him to be sexually into you, see if you have things in common. Being sexually interested in someone is more than just the sex, it’s usually much deeper than that. Laugh together, have a deep conversation, and build a connection. People don’t usually have sex first and then get to know each other. It’s usually the other way around.

#11 Show him you have options. Don’t treat him like he’s the only guy who wants you because we all know that’s not true. He needs to see that other guys want you too. Once he notices that there’s competition, he’ll try harder to get your attention, and that will only make him want you more.

#12 Show confidence. Do you know what’s sexy? A woman with confidence. I swear, you could be wearing a potato sack, but if you wear it with confidence, there’s no way you won’t catch his eye. Confidence is key when it comes to making a man want you sexually. Own it, girl!

#13 Reward him. This doesn’t mean you must sleep with him right away. But you can reward him by letting him take you out on a date, for example. Don’t worry, the sex will come. But if you want something serious, I wouldn’t rush into it just yet.

 

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

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Alicia – Chapter 2 – I’m Determined

I go into the credit union today and my love is there. Alicia is at her post and not doing anything. This is nuts. It’s almost like I’m creating scenarios for the blog.

But I feel like after three years there is a comfort in my literary work and how I much I enjoy creating new stories. I love to work and be busy, but there’s always something wonderful that snakes its way into my life to drive me forward to write new material.

There are so many old stories and a rich catalog of history that I’m very busy telling those tales. But I love that there’s always a new kink in the armor to get me going again with fresh material.

I’ve written about quiet Alicia and the mystery of my favorite teller but I’m going to press forward with her to see if I can get a story from her.

It really comes down to she always seems to do my deposits and those fuzzy forearms that are some sort of sexual trigger for me. It’s nuts, but she’s just another fascinating character in the phicklephilly universe.

Normally the world would be grossed out by her hair. I love her arms and love that she bares them all of the time. In a world of a bunch of insecure guys that have only learned about women through pornography where every thing is shaved to be technically ready for porn cameras for more detail, it has changed the culture.

I hate that.

It’s foolish. Let women rule their own bodies.

I can’t believe I’m talking about body hair and a teller at my credit union.

But I fancy her, so I’m going to see what happens until they lock me up for inappropriate behavior.

I go in with a cash deposit. It’s about a week after my last one, so all good. This one pale girl says, “Next member.”

I ignore her and go to Alicia.

Arms are bare and furry as ever. I love her and her fuzz. She doesn’t cover them and doesn’t shave or wax them. I love my Alicia.

“Last time I was in here you looked like you were headed out to lunch.”

“I was.”

“Where do you normally go to lunch?” I said through the three-inch thick bullet proof glass.

“I usually bring my lunch in, but if not I go downstairs to Suburban or Wawa.”

“Do you ever go to the Comcast food court?” (Which is God)

“No. I’ve never been there. I hear they have a lot of great food there. Like seafood and everything.”

This tells me Alicia comes into work everyday and does her job and has a very simple life. Sandwiches and a conservative life. I find this attractive and think about my crazy idea of a note.

Do I ask her out to lunch with a note? I’ve already laid the groundwork about how passing a note to a teller is a robbery.

I may do it.

I have to think on this.

It’s original and fun.

I have to be careful because she could be in a relationship and that could be a wall. But I think I’m going to try for the blog.  I’ve loved Alicia in a phicklephilly way for so long I have to do it.

It’s a teller from the credit union entertaining a good client. She should do it. I wrote good reviews about this place and I’ll write more for her.

I could use that as a tool. I know it’s wrong but it’ll be great for her.

I need to structure my deposits so I can see her more.

I’m doing this.

It’s just lunch.

I’m going to make this happen.

As my father used to say “I’m determined.”

 

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

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Philadelphia’s New Year’s Tradition Reflects Our Racist Past — And May Overcome It

The Mummers Parade is growing more diverse, showing how longtime traditions can be recast.

Correction: An earlier version of this post stated that Frank Rizzo’s quoted comments came during a 1978 mayoral campaign. In reality, they came during a campaign to change the city charter so that Rizzo could run for a third consecutive term the following year.

 

For more than a century, Philadelphia has celebrated New Year’s Day with the Mummers Parade, a regional tradition that brings thousands into the streets to wear costumes, play music, dance and perform satirical sketches on local and national politics.

Almost every year, however, the parade sparks controversy. In 2019, for example, City Council President Darrell L. Clarke denounced the mummers because he incorrectly thought that the rapper Jay-Z had been portrayed by a white man in blackface, not an African American. While Clarke was wrong, the mistake was plausible, given that black Philadelphians, who make up more than 40 percent of the city’s population, have never participated in the parade in large numbers. And until the city imposed a ban on blackface makeup in the parade in 1963, many mummers marched in blackface, a practice inherited from the 19th-century minstrel show.

Even today, the Mummers Parade is imbued with performances reminiscent of blackface minstrelsy. The “strut,” the mummers’ signature dance step, for example, can be traced to the cakewalk, an antebellum plantation dance adopted by the minstrel show.

In many ways, the history of the Mummers Parade is a microcosm of the halting movement toward racial integration in the United States. The persistence of minstrel-show stereotypes in the parade mirrors and magnifies the persistence of racism in American society at large. But the parade is also one of the most prominent expressions of Philadelphia’s distinctive history and culture and, thus, also a potential source of civic strength in an increasingly diverse city.

Throughout much of northern Europe and colonial North America, groups of costumed “mummers” roved from house to house during the Christmas season, entertaining their hosts and expecting food, drink or a small tip in return. As early as the 17th century, immigrants from England and Sweden introduced this custom to southeastern Pennsylvania.

By the 19th century, most mummers were young, working-class white men, and their streetside antics were infused with forms of racial impersonation borrowed from the Indian melodramas and blackface minstrel shows popular in the contemporary theater. According to the Philadelphia Public Ledger, New Year’s Day 1876 witnessed impromptu parades by men dressed as “Indians and squaws, princes and princesses, clowns … [and] Negroes of the minstrel hall type.”

Philadelphia’s new, central police force eventually cracked down on unruly holiday celebrations, and H. Bart McHugh — a newspaper reporter and theatrical agent — led the effort to corral the mummers into an organized parade, with prizes funded by the city. In 1901, the city government sponsored the first official Mummers Parade, and the Public Ledger reported that “three thousand men and boys in outlandish garb frolicked, cavorted, grimaced, and whooped while the Mayor and members of Councils, Judges, and other officials, State and municipal, looked on.”

From the beginning, most mummers’ clubs specialized in fancy dress, music, dance or comedy, leading to an elaborate structure for judging a varied assortment of parade performances. Three African American groups competed for prizes in Philadelphia’s first city-sponsored Mummers Parade, and regular African American participation in the parade continued through 1929, when the Octavius V. Catto String Band (named for a martyred 19th-century civil rights leader) made its final appearance.

Sociologist Patricia Anne Masters attributes the withdrawal of independent African American clubs from the 1930 Mummers Parade to the Depression, which hit Philadelphia’s black community especially hard. Deteriorating economic conditions, along with the Catto String Band’s last-place finish in 1928 and 1929, clearly discouraged African American groups from competing, but black brass bands continued to march as paid accompanists for white mummers’ groups through the 1930s, a practice that remains common today.

Yet, Mummers documentarian E.A. Kennedy III suggests that the prolific use of blackface by white mummers also contributed to black disillusionment with the parade. This disillusionment erupted into full-blown conflict in December 1963, when Cecil B. Moore, head of the Philadelphia chapter of the NAACP, and Louis Smith of the Congress of Racial Equality (CORE) successfully pressured parade director Elias Myers, a city official, to ban blackface from the Mummers Parade. This ban precipitated an unsuccessful legal challenge, as well as protests and counter-protests by mummers and civil rights activists.

The result was an uneasy detente over the issue of race in the Mummers Parade. Even in 1975, 12 years after the blackface ban, the New York Times described it as “essentially a white man’s event,” overseen by Mayor Frank Rizzo, who famously enjoined his white working-class base to “vote white” during a 1978 campaign to change the city charter so he could run for a third consecutive term.

 

Over the past six decades the parade has grown considerably more inclusive, even as brownface, redface and yellowface makeup have remained common sights in the parade, and blackface still appeared at the nighttime party after the official parade has ended. In the 1970s, most mummers’ clubs began admitting women for the first time. (Women had long worked behind the scenes, helping to stitch costumes but rarely appeared as performers). In 1984, the Goodtimers Comic Club, with an African American president and hundreds of minority members, started competing in the parade, just as W. Wilson Goode, Philadelphia’s first African American mayor, took office. And in 1992, a group of Cambodian American artists and students teamed up with the Golden Sunrise Fancy Brigade to stage a Khmer dance drama along the parade route, reflecting the rapid growth of the city’s Cambodian American population.

Over the past six decades, the Mummers Parade has grown considerably more inclusive. (Ed Jones/AFP/Getty Images)
Over the past six decades, the Mummers Parade has grown considerably more inclusive. (Ed Jones/AFP/Getty Images)

By 2016, participants in the Mummers Parade included a Caribbean steel band, a Mexican American carnival organization, an African American drill team, a Puerto Rican bomba group and a brigade of drag queens — even as videos of individual mummers using racist and homophobic slurs along the parade route have also gone viral in recent years.

This bifurcation captures the complex state of the parade when it comes to race as we enter a new decade. Some mummers embrace the growing diversity of the parade out of conviction, whereas others view it as a pragmatic antidote to the declining participation and attendance that have afflicted the parade since the 1990s. Indeed, many if not most new mummers over the past decade have come from outside the white ethnic communities that traditionally sustained the parade.

 

Progressive and racially integrated mummers’ groups like the Vaudevillains, the Rabble Rousers and the Lobster Club have sought to change the political tenor of the parade, with performances that confront climate change, nuclear proliferation, big agriculture, student loan debt, access to health care and fracking in rural Pennsylvania. (Full disclosure: I was a member of the Vaudevillains from 2009 to 2012). These groups have realized that joining the parade is the only way to bring about a more pluralistic future for the mummers, offering a local lesson in direct political action that applies to struggles over diversity, equity and inclusion at the national level.

The Mummers Parade offers a carnivalesque bully pulpit to communicate directly with one’s fellow citizens, and as a city-sponsored event, participation is open to anyone. The reach of the parade has diminished from its peak, but roughly 8,000 marchers and 50,000 spectators crowd the parade route each New Year’s Day, and hundreds of thousands watch the parade on local television. Because Philadelphia is the largest city in America’s second-largest swing state, the vibrancy of the city’s political life has national implications, especially in a presidential election year.

A populist tradition like the Mummers Parade has the potential to point the way toward a more inclusive future or to remain mired in the racism that has characterized America’s past. Rather than abandon or decry the parade for its attachment to minstrel-show stereotypes and its history of racial exclusion, Philadelphians of all backgrounds would do well to embrace mummery as a powerful civic rite, with the potential to make the city’s growing diversity a force to be reckoned with.

 

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

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Phicklephilly – Happy New Year – 2020

Wow. What a Year!

What a Decade it’s been!

How do you like my new Homepage pic? In the last few years the skyline here in Philly has dramatically changed. The town has really boomed in the last 12 years I’ve lived here. So I figured the pic should reflect how lovely our city looks now as we enter a brand new decade!

I’ve been writing Phicklephilly for over 3 years now, and it’s been an incredible journey of dating, love, relationships, and new discoveries!

I’d like to first express my incredible gratitude to everyone who has chosen to read, like, comment, and most of all, follow my blog. I appreciate every one of you and will always try to respond to any of your comments on any of my stories.

Can we talk numbers for a moment before I get to the good stuff?

Here’s where we are as of this writing. Over the last 3 years, I’ve had over 55,000 visitors to the site, and over 100,000 page views! I can’t believe my good fortune.

Thank you all!

I started this blog back in the Fall of 2016 with a single post on a Monday about a date I went on. After writing it, I thought… How the heck am I going to come up with something for next week? But I wrote something else and was on my way. It was a very long and slow progress in the beginning. (The only way to become a writer is to simply write!)

Then I’d do an update on the occasional Wednesday. Then came Tales of Rock. Then Crazy Dating Stories from my past. What followed was Dating and Relationship Advice. What was once a once a week thing has grown to a daily forum!

Top Blog Posts of 2019

You want to know what’s weird? Out of everything I’ve written on here, (1800 posts!) the most popular thing I’ve ever composed is a post entitled, Asian Massage Parlors – The Fun Part. It’s had over 2700 page views in the last 2 years! People all over the world read that piece every day! I don’t know why, but it’s an odd anomaly based on what phicklephilly is usually about.

Another strange phenomenon has been the success of articles I’ve written about two actresses that were on a wonderful program from the BBC. Death in Paradise. It’s a great little series that takes place at a fictional resort. The local police force solves a different murder each episode. Actresses, Sara Martin, and Josephine Jobert have both been on the show at different times. I was completely taken with both of these lovely, talented women. Well, apparently, so is the world. Anything I’ve written about either of them have been some of my most successful posts ever! (2400+ views each!) You’d think a Dating and Relationship themed blog wouldn’t get that kind of traction writing about actresses that aren’t even popular here in the US. But apparently, globally these ladies are beloved. Congrats ladies! Thanks for making my blog great!

There are several other posts that are wildly popular as well, but mostly people like stories about my teenage years. One of the most popular ones is about a young lady named Lola whom I had the pleasure of having as my little girlfriend back in the 70’s. It’s a sexy, fun tale that has somehow caught the imagination of my readers. (1200 views!)

Also, it seems anything sexy seems to generate quite a bit of buzz. One of the top performers is entitled, Hookers on Tinder. (All time views: 3200!) I’m still a bit surprised by all of this, but I promise to keep trying to create quality, fun content that people like to read.

This kind of data tells me that the people have spoken, and maybe I need to dig deeper into my checkered past and pull out some more stories from my youth!

I’ve written so many heartfelt pieces about my life, family and feelings. No one really cares much about me working through my issues as a kid. They love the crazy, sexy stories and dating advice! (I don’t really mind what you like. Just keep reading folks!)

Anyway, let’s talk about what’s coming up on Phicklephilly in 2020.

 

Dating and Relationship Advice

This series began back in 2017. I would publish content on the weekends. It just seemed like a natural progression for the blog to take. I wrote about dating and relationship tales from my own life, and thought, why not give a little advice to help others?

It was okay for awhile, but then a friend of mine was going through a difficult separation from his wife and I wanted to help. I of course, rallied around him to assist. But I also thought, what if I try to write something every day that references dating and relationship guidance? I’ll do it every day for 30 days and he can read it, and it’ll help acclimate him to the new dating world after being off the market for 12 years.

Well, that turned into 90 days. Then I simply pushed on and kept researching and writing, and before I knew it, it became an everyday thing.

But… after a year I realized he was too busy to read it and it felt like a waste of my time. I also wanted to focus on the things I wanted to write about in my own life. I was tired of having to edit 14 posts for over 3 hours every Sunday night, just to be ready to publish for the upcoming week’s material.

But then something magical happened. 

My daily traffic DOUBLED! 

I liked that very much. But after a year and a half of that I decided around the end of the third quarter of 2019 I was sick and tired of writing dating and relationship advice every day. I decided to stop doing it by year end and focus on stories that were exclusively about my life experiences from then on.

But… it got to be about a month ago and I realized that dating and relationship advice had become the bedrock, the foundation of the blog itself. It seemed people loved reading them and always enjoyed the content and commented to let me know that it was helping them in their daily lives.

So… Happy 2020! I will continue to try to bring you the best and most interesting dating and relationship content I can for at least another year. (Knowing me, I’ll probably never stop writing about the subject because there’s so much to tell!)

Thank you for all of your words and support. Dating and Relationship Advice is here to stay!

Did you know there’s a Language Translation widget on here now? It’s really increased my global reach, and I like that people everywhere in the world can now enjoy my stories in their native language. Phicklephilly can be read in any language with a simple click of a button! (Now you have no excuse not to read my blog!)

Sun Stories

These stories will continue to be told through 2020 but probably not much further than that. If you keep reading the blog you’ll find out why. However, I’ll be introducing some new people that have come to work at the salon so we’ll see how they work out. The lovely Amelia and Eileen come to mind. I hope you enjoy reading about these great women whom I’ve had the honor to know.

Crazy Dating Stories

I’m almost out of gas on these stories. They’ve been fun to recount, but there are only so many in my memory. I’m sure there’ll always be some crazy story to tell based on who I am, but for the most part, they’ve been exhausted at this point. I will eventually tell the tales of my young life in New Jersey with some legendary people, but there are still some from my time in California in the early Eighties, but beyond that not much is left. Which brings me to…

California Dreamin’ 1982-1984

I really enjoyed writing about the journey on the road to Los Angeles back in those days. I think I did justice to the trip itself, but I know there’s so much more to tell. I still have more stories to tell, but they’ll no longer be running every Friday anymore. I’ll probably write a few more and run them on Saturdays. I’ll compose them as the memories surface, but I’ll write them when the mood strikes me. I promise they’ll be interesting, but for now I need to focus on the things that are happening in my life right now. (So, they’re not going away, just published a little less.) Spoiler Alert: George Carlin and Arnold Schwartzenegger will both be making appearances, and I have proof that I’ve met them both!

Erotic Fiction

I tried my hand at writing erotica in 2019. I thought this would be a fun foray into something a bit more racy than the usual Phicklephilly dating fare. I worked hard on creating rich stories with solid plot lines and characters with a bit of sex. I thought they’d be a big hit with my readers.

I was dead wrong.

Murder Mystery Weekend, Another Life, A Unique Gift and The Beach House all withered and died like a house plant that gets no light or water. I get it. No one read any of them. (Okay, like one guy read maybe one or two of them, but that’s just not enough for me to continue these erotic series) Frankly, I liked the idea of A Unique Gift. (The whole mind control thing tickled me.) I loved writing The Beach House and thought it would make a solid book, or movie. But alas… all of it failed miserably. I appreciate anyone who took a look, but I get it. It just didn’t work.

All of that content and more sexy, NSFW stories can be found on the following site:

https://lapetitemort17.wordpress.com/about/

So, going forward, the only things that will run over on that site (La Petite Mort) will be content that’s too racy for phicklephilly. I’ll post a NSFW link on any given story and you’ll be able to click on it and go read the story over there. I’d simply abandon the site, but based on recent events, I think I’m going to need that it to be able to publish some of my upcoming adventures. But for now, Erotic Fiction is done on Phicklephilly.

Tinder Moments

This was a monthly series where I collected funny, crazy dating profiles from online dating sites. Frankly, I don’t really use those sites anymore and got tired of collecting, and cutting and pasting all of that nonsense into my blog. So they’re also sadly dead on this site. You can always go back and read the old ones. They’re pretty funny!

Phicklephilly and Sun Stories published as books on Amazon Kindle

I tried to get two books published over a year and a half ago and ran into so many technical difficulties with the team at Amazon, I decided to scrap the idea. However, I’d like to try again in 2020 and also have another work of fiction entitled, Angel with a Broken Wing, I’d like to try to publish this year. So, fingers crossed! I’m going to give it another shot! Wish me luck!

Tales of Rock

I still love researching and writing this column. As a musician and a fan of music, it’s fun to dig up these stories about the musicians we all love and hate. They’ll continue to run every Sunday at 8am through 2020. I’ve also added another feature entitled, The Best Band You Never Heard. It’ll run on the first Sunday of every month and introduce you to just that. Great bands you may never have heard about that rock! Tales of Rock is here to stay!

Phicklephilly the Podcast

I’ve done a few of these on Spotify and enjoyed making them. If I have time I’d love to do a podcast series about a former love of my life, Michelle. I still miss her friendship and would like to create a kind of audio book type thing so you can hear my stories in my own voice. I’d also like to have guests on and interview interesting people about a myriad of different subjects. Please stay tuned, this is new ground for me and any feedback is always welcome!

Guest Bloggers

There’s one person’s blog I’m interested in promoting this year on Phicklephilly. I enjoy supporting other artist’s work. I’ve done it in the past. But here’s the thing. It has to fit with what I’m creating on this forum and sadly, I really have little time these days to add anything other than the content I work to publish here everyday. I’m not ruling it out, but I just don’t want to bite off more than I can chew this year.

Dating

The core formula of Phicklephilly has always been my personal experiences here in Philadelphia. Although Dating and Relationship Advice has become the foundation of the blog that carries it forth, I believe the stories about my life lie at the center of its existence.

I live a quiet and private life now, but have always believed in absolute transparency in the words that I write here. I have no illusion as to who I am, or what I am in this world. I’m not ashamed of anything I’ve done, and it’s all from the heart.

Let’s review what’s been happening.

Michelle

She was my girlfriend over 10 years ago. I still sometimes think about her, and you can read her series on Phicklephilly from 2016-2017. Originally there were only about 15 chapters but it will probably swell to 24 based on events and time. But I assure you, Michelle is not coming back. I miss her and wish her well, but it is what it is. Michelle is the one who got away.

Cherie

Cherie is my lovely girlfriend I started seeing near the end of 2016. That relationship has weathered time, distance, and my dalliances with other women. The issues in this union have been ongoing. The distance factor: She lives 40 miles away in Pottstown, PA. Our age difference: 30 years. Our work schedules: We both work crazy hours. Her family obligations: Lives with her parents and sister and has a young son. We rarely see each other. It sucks, because she’s a wonderful lady.

Sadly, when I look back on the last year or so, our tender relationship has been reduced to little more than a series of booty calls due to the sheer lack of time either of us have to see each other. Cherie is a great girl, but I have a feeling that in 2020 this relationship will sadly meet it’s end. (But, I could be wrong!)

Kita

She’s the Asian girl I met a year and a half ago at the tanning salon. A lovely, sweet girl trying to navigate her life at college here in Philly. (You can go back and read the entire sordid odyssey on this blog.) I never saw any of this coming and feel bad about it. We dated a little bit, but it felt more like a mentor/student relationship that recently spun out of control in glorious fashion. To be honest with you, at the time of this writing I don’t know if I’ll ever see her again.

Jazmin

This has been a recent, unexpected development. I don’t quite know what to make of this Persian beauty. Her appearance has been quite unexpected and I have no idea where this one will lead me. (Probably into trouble!)

Rebecca

Ah… last but certainly not least is the ethereal, Rebecca. I met her back in 2016 on Tinder when I first started writing this blog and got back into the dating arena. She predates Cherie, but disappeared for a period of time. I found her absolutely enchanting despite her then chaotic lifestyle. She recently resurfaced, and I decided to rerun her original series from the Fall of 2016.

At the time, she drifted in and out of my life. But I met Cherie and she took precedence. Cherie quickly became my main squeeze and I gave little thought as to what happened to Rebecca. I was sort of falling for her back then, but she was so flaky it was hard to lock on to her in a meaningful way. I get it. A young lady with a busy life. But there was just something wonderful about her that I could never quite possess. That obviously made her even more desirable to me.

I wanted to go back and release the original series and publish everything that happened leading up to her doing what she did. I had some drafts that I never published back then and wanted to tell the whole story now that she’s appeared back in Philadelphia. I was too busy with my new love, Cherie to even think about her back then. I hope you find her series as interesting as I do. I loved writing about her back then and I guess I just felt the story needed to be told once and for all. At this point it’s more of a nostalgia piece than anything.

 

Other than that I’ve been leading a pretty quiet and uneventful life. I like to work and stay busy. I feel like old Ben Kanobi from Star Wars, A New Hope, Episode IV. Not Obi Wan out fighting the Empire, just old Ben hanging out in his little house watching Netflix.

Sometimes I feel like all of my memories are here on phicklephilly and scattered in a bunch of letters and photo albums in my house.

But… I’m still alive and well and I’m sure there’ll be some new adventures I’ll explore in this brand new decade!

Thank you again for reading Phicklephilly loyal readers!

Onward and upward into The Roaring 20’s!

Thank you!

 

 

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

Listen to Phicklephilly LIVE on Spotify!

Facebook: phicklephilly       Instagram: @phicklephilly       Twitter: @phicklephilly

 

 

Zoolon Forever!