LAWNDALE – The 312 Magee Avenue Playlist

The Lawndale book is just one week away from being published!

While writing the Lawndale book I started to think about all of the music we listened to growing up in the house on 312 Magee.

There was always some sort of music playing somewhere in the house at any given time. Whether it was my mom listening to Andy Williams on the record player in the dining room while she did her housework, or us kids listening to our records.

My father always loved music and would listen to classical and operas in the basement while he worked or read his books.

We had the jukebox on the porch that had been loaned to us by a couple that my dad was friends with and we loved that thing!

There was the the 8-track player in the 1969 VW minibus that we all rocked out to on trips on the road with dad.

We listened to the radio in the kitchen and would hear all the new popular songs of the day.

I would sometimes bring a little record player to the dinner table and sit it on the seat next to me. My dad wasn’t home, and it would be just my mom and my sisters. I would put little 45 rpm records on and we would all sing to them. It was a riot!

I got into listening to some of my favorite songs and bands recently on Spotify and thought about creating a playlist of all the music we heard in our house growing up as kids. Not just the music we owned, but all the theme songs from our favorite shows that were on TV in the 60s and 70s.

At first I thought it would be cool to share it with my sisters for nostalgic reasons. But then I thought, wouldn’t it be great to share it with all of the people who might remember some of these songs from their past as well.

So I’ve decided to add to the anticipation of the Lawndale book coming out next week and share it with everybody as a soundtrack to the book.

Some of the songs you may not recognize but some will make you smile and take you back to a simpler time. This is an eclectic mix of music and themes from the 60s and 70s that were alive in our house at 312 Magee growing up.

I hope you enjoy it, and maybe you’ll listen to it in the background while reading my book! (Don’t worry if you don’t have a Spotify account. It’s free and you can just go on and check it out!)

Here it is! The 312 Magee soundtrack!

https://open.spotify.com/embed/playlist/5nQ0QYz4dBIphiU7hiIZR4?utm_source=generator

I hope you all enjoy listening to this as much as I enjoyed putting it together. I’d also be happy to add any songs I may have forgotten!

Enjoy!

LAWNDALE the book will be available on Amazon next Tuesday on August 9th!

Thank you for reading my blog. Please like, comment, and most of all, FOLLOW Phicklephilly! I publish every week on Tuesdays.

Wildwood Daze – Botto’s and the Office

North Wildwood, New Jersey – Late 1970s

Botto’s

One of our favorite hangouts growing up at the shore was the beloved Botto’s Arcade at 10th and Surf Avenue. It was 2 blocks from our house and was a meeting place for the local kids.

In the first half of the decade, it was a small market full of food staples, sundries, and beach stuff. It’s where we used to go to buy our kites and string. But because Russo’s Market at 9th and Ocean was such a juggernaut and go-to spot they sort of ran Joe Botto out of business. Just geographic competition. Botto, a retired Philly cop, was never happy about that, but shifted gears and turned it into an arcade much to the joy of the neighborhood youth.

Botto’s had everything we needed for an enjoyable afternoon or evening as an alternative to the beach and boardwalk. A phonebooth outside in case you had to drop a dime and make a call, and a soda machine full of ice-cold beverages stood out front. Joe’s wife normally worked during the day, giving out change for the machines inside and operating the bike rental part of the business.

The place was small, but just the right size for us kids. A regulation-sized, slate pool table in the center of the room, and a thunderous jukebox packed with 45’s of all the hits of the day parked against the front wall near the entrance. (It played A and B sides! This way, I could listen to Walk this Way and Uncle Salty!)

All around the perimeter of the room were pinball machines and video games. My favorite pinball machine, Flash was where I spent most of my time and quarters. They had some of the greats… Eight Ball Deluxe, Gorgar, Wizard, Playboy, El Dorado, and Joker Poker, to name a few.

But, they had all the classic video games of the day in there too. Space Invaders, Pac-Man, Super Breakout, and Asteroids.

Botto’s was a place where teenagers could hang out, play games, chat, flirt, shoot pool, drink soda and smoke cigarettes. The owners were cool, and there was never any trouble there. I’ve spent many a rainy day or health night in that arcade. The phrase “health night” came from my mother. She used to say to me, “You’re out every night! Take a health night!”

You never knew who you might run into while you were there, but it was always a solid meeting spot to hang and make plans for where you may be heading afterward. It was surrounded by motels so even though its core audience was kids from the neighborhood, they always got a few tourists in there as well.

Across the street was a place called Golf City. It was pretty much a waste of valuable real estate that was home to a miniature gold course. Fun for the little kids and they had a small arcade as well, but overall it was lame.

Botto’s was the cool kid’s place. I spent many wonderful times in Botto’s in my youth, but sadly it’s now long gone. What stands in its place now is an ice cream stand.

All that’s left to remind me of the original Botto’s in the brick face and the door and windows. So picture this place without the A-roof, the awning, the sign, the benches, the lights, and the rest of anything pink.

What’s left would be a pretty boring-looking spot. But, none of that was important. Botto’s was about what was inside. The people, the music, the games, and the laughter.

The Office

That’s not what it was called. It was a little game room on the third floor of The Flying Dutchman Motel.

Right there on the southwest corner of the 3rd floor!

The photo I used at the beginning of this post is the motel before they added the 3rd floor. But that’s what The Flying Dutchman looked like in the 70s.

We knew the owners and they were cool with us going up there to smoke cigarettes and spend our quarters on their vending machines in their game room.

The reason we called this little spot The Office, is because we used it not only as a place to hang out and play but to have meetings. If there was some local drama going down or some stories to be told, this was the place it all took place.

I remember trying to tell my older sister some convoluted story about some things that had gone down on Morey’s Pier or some other crazy news from the neighborhood one day. She was trying to understand what we planned to do about this matter and I simply said: “Office…now.”

We liked it because it was high up off the street. We had a view and also liked the games they had in there. Just two pinball machines and an old 1972 Pong machine. There’s a link I provided, but it was so basic it may have been the first video game ever invented. But a fun game! Pinball was still king, but video games were getting better with every coming season.

The biggest difference between this place and Botto’s was, this spot was quieter and more private. You could hang up there, sit at the card table they had set up in there, and just chat. It didn’t have the number of games and music that Botto’s had, but this was our spot. Most of all, it was unsupervised.

This is probably one of the most important aspects of this little game room.

I’ll let you in on a little secret. Pinball machines are designed so that you can’t rock them around too much or they’ll “Tilt.” What that means is, if you shake the machine too much or lift it up to slow the ball down or anything else to upset the machine while the ball is in play, it’ll light up, TILT, and the unit goes off and your ball drains down the hole. You’re done for being too rough with the unit and most of all trying to cheat.

But kids are creative, cunning, learning machines. You know that if the adults come up with some solution to thwart our fun or sustained play, we’ll probably work to come up with a solution to beat it.

So while the machine was on, we’d have one kid gently lift the lower front up off its legs and stack quarters under the legs, one or two at a time. This would flatten the play area on the board but not enough to TILT the machine. We’d get that baby up as high as possible. This would slow down the gameplay and go virtually unnoticed if someone walked in.

By applying this simple remedy, the game would be easier, you’d get a higher score and rack up more free games. That was the main goal. Free games! 

This also assisted with the legendary, “Back from the Dead.” What this meant was if you were in the middle of a game and the ball somehow got past your flippers, and towards the hole… if it was moving fast enough to bounce back out of the hole and back into play, it was always deemed a miracle, which was met with cheers from any onlookers. The ball literally came back from th dead!

So, we did that all the time up there.

Sometimes I would just go up there on my own and play pinball. I just wanted a little time alone to think and reflect on my life living at the seashore all summer. It was a brilliant and unforgettable few chapters from my young life.

Braces off, skin clear, and finally emerging from puberty!

Here’s a pic of me in 1978 on the 3rd-floor sun deck of The Flying Dutchman. The Office wasn’t just for pinball. It was also a great opportunity for me to meet the vacationing talent.

Pictured: Me with Ann and Gina Dougherty on the roof deck of the Flying Dutchman Motel -1978

Yea… tough times for Chaz in Wildwood!

If you liked this story, you’ll love my next book, Down The Shore, coming to a bookstore near you Memorial Day, 2023!

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

You can check out my books here: https://www.amazon.com/s?k=charles+wiedenmann&ref=nb_sb_noss_1

If Your Partner Is Really In Love, They’ll Never Do These 15 Small Things

When you’re happily in love, it’s so easy to miss signs that your partner isn’t exactly on the same page. While things like name calling and cheating are obvious red flags, it’s the little things you should pay attention to. Because according to experts, the small things can clue you in to how in love your partner really is.

“The reason why it’s so important to watch out for these seemingly small things is for the sake of kindness,” Julia McCurley, Professional Matchmaker and founder of Something More, tells Bustle. “Kindness, along with emotional stability, is the most important predictor of satisfaction and stability in a marriage.”

Small gestures of kindness are what make people feel cared for, understood, validated, and loved in a relationship. “Maybe you are OK with taking an Uber to the airport,” McCurley says. “But if it’s important for your partner to have you drive them, then you’re spending $100 of your time to make them feel like a million bucks.”

Although kind gestures are great and can make you feel loved, you don’t want to overlook the small signs of disrespect either. So if you’re curious about how your partner truly feels about you, here are some small things they likely won’t do if they love you, according to experts.

1. Say No To Driving You To The Airport

Ashley Batz/Bustle

In a true partnership, McCurley says both people should consider their partner a top priority. That means your partner should always be there to support you and try to meet your needs. If your partner really loves you, they won’t flat out refuse favors, like taking you to the airport, without a legitimately good excuse. If something is important to you, then your partner should find it important too, she says. “No questions asked.”

2. Tell You When They Think Someone Else Is Attractive, Even If You Feel Uncomfortable

Andrew Zaeh for Bustle

There’s nothing wrong with finding other people attractive and talking about celebrity crushes once and a while. But if your partner actively comments on how attractive your friend, their friend or the server is when it makes you uncomfortable, they’re likely not thinking about your feelings. “When we’re in love, we tend to have tunnel vision for the person we’re with,” Amica Graber, a relationship expert with TruthFinder, tells us. “If the eyes are wandering, it’s a bad sign.”

3. Pick Petty Fights With You Regularly

Ashley Batz/Bustle

One petty fight may not make a huge impact on your relationship. But over time, “frequent fighting can take a serious toll on your relationship,” Graber says. These little fights over why someone didn’t do this or why someone always does that can really add up. If your partner constantly finds ways to argue with you over the smallest things, there may be a deeper reason behind it.

4. Forget The Details

Andrew Zaeh for Bustle

When we’re in love, Graber says it’s a lot easier to remember the details about someone like the color of their eyes, the names of their siblings, or their favorite pizza toppings. “But if someone can’t remember any of the little details about you, they may not be 100 percent invested,” she says.

5. Air Your Issues Out In Public

Andrew Zaeh for Bustle

You may do something that frustrates your partner, but that is no excuse for them to be putting you down in front of other people. “If you’re having a dispute about something, a loving partner will discuss it with you privately, and not in front of your friends,” Graber says. That means no passive aggressive social media posts either.

6. Criticize Your Lifestyle Choices

Andrew Zaeh for Bustle

“Encouraging a healthy lifestyle is part of loving someone,” life coach Rebekah Storm, tells us. After all, when you love someone you’ll obviously want them to live a long and healthy life. But that doesn’t mean anyone should be criticizing what someone eats, drinks, or does to stay healthy. A partner who loves you will never make you feel bad for the choices you make in your life. According to Storm, shaming in any way is a sign of someone trying to feel superior, which can mean they feel insecure.

7. Compare You To Other People

Andrew Zaeh for Bustle

A partner who truly loves you won’t compare you to anyone else. Even seemingly positive comparison like, “You’re way better than my ex,” can be problematic. “Someone who loves you will not be thinking about ways you measure up against other people,” Storm says. You exist independently of anyone they know or have known in the past, and creating a comparison may show your partner’s mind is partially elsewhere.

8. Lie To Avoid Hurting Your Feelings

Ashley Batz/Bustle

“A partner who loves you will respect you enough to be honest, even when it might hurt a little,” Storm says. When you ask your partner for their honest opinion, you should be able to trust that they’re telling the truth and not just what you want to hear. Even though the truth is not always easy to tell, trust is important in a loving relationship.

9. Keep You A Secret

Ashley Batz/Bustle

“In my experience, partners who have never truly loved me have actively hidden me from their social media,” relationship expert and writer, Gina Daniel, tells us. “If someone loves you enough to want to be with you, they should at least let people know you are involved, even if it’s just at your request.” It isn’t “needy” or unreasonable for you to want to feel like your partner is proud to be with you. Even if your partner likes to keep it fairly private online, Daniel says they should still respect your desire to be seen with you, and you both can compromise to figure out what form that will take.

10. Be Too Busy If You Really Need Them

Andrew Zaeh for Bustle

“If your partner loves you, they’re going to be there for you no matter what,” Bethany Ricciardi, relationship expert with TooTimid, tells us. Someone who truly cares about you and wants you to be part of their life will never be too “busy” to be there for you. “Don’t think just because they missed a call while at work that they don’t love you,” Ricciardi says. “You have to be respectful to their time and boundaries too.” They don’t need to drop whatever they’re doing to be with you at any given time. But if you feel like you can truly count on them during your time of need, you have a keeper.

11. Discourage You

Andrew Zaeh for Bustle

“They might be realistic with you, and give an honest opinion about how they feel when it comes to what you’re doing, but they’ll never try and break your confidence,” Ricciardi says. A person who loves you may challenge you in order to help you grow, but they’ll always be your biggest cheerleader.

12. Say Things That Put You Down

Ashley Batz/Bustle

When you’re super close to someone, it’s easy to make a critique “out of love.” But as Ricciardi says, a partner who’s truly in love will appreciate you for who you are. They wouldn’t want you to change yourself because that’s who they fell in love with.

13. Make You Feel Alone

Ashley Batz/Bustle

“Surprisingly enough, many individuals feel like they’re in a relationship by themselves,” Ricciardi says. “If your partner cares about you, they’re going to make sure you’re drowning in their love.” They’ll make the effort to check in with you on a regular basis and you’ll never be left wondering when they’re finally going to see you. In short, they’ll be putting in the effort.

14. Monopolize Your Time

Ashley Batz/Bustle

If you’re in a healthy relationship, there’s room in your life for the other important people you love like your family and friends. “If your partner loves you, they won’t try and keep you to themselves,” Ricciardi says. “They’ll want to be happy in and outside of the relationship.” They might miss you when you’re spending time apart, but they’ll never try to make you feel bad about spending time with other people.

15. Make You Feel Like An Inconvenience

Andrew Zaeh for Bustle

If someone loves you, they won’t you feel like you’re “just another chore getting checked off the list,” Ricciardi says. When you’re with them, they’ll be present. They won’t be scrolling through their phone or thinking about other things. They’ll be with you, 100 percent because they genuinely enjoy spending time with you.

When it comes to your relationship, the small things are extremely important to pay attention to. It’s the everyday stuff that makes up your relationship. If you can say that your partner doesn’t do any of these things, you can be sure they really do love you.

 

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

My new book, Angel with a Broken Wing is now for sale on Amazon!

 

https://www.amazon.com/s?k=charles+wiedenmann&ref=nb_sb_noss_1

Listen to the Phicklephilly podcast LIVE on Spotify!

Instagram: @phicklephilly    Facebook: phicklephilly    Twitter: @phicklephilly

3 Ways You’re Driving Your Husband To Cheat On You, According To A Former Escort

You might be pushing him towards infidelity.

If you’re worried about your husband cheating on you, whether it’s “micro cheating” or a full-blown affair, then you may not realize that there are behaviors you may be doing that are driving him away — even if he’s cheating on you.

When you’re so busy looking for signs of cheating in your spouse and asking difficult questions like, “Is he cheating on me?” you’re missing out on behavior you could be doing that is distancing and hurting your relationship even worse.

As a former high-end escort, I met many cheating husbands and found myself in unique situations with these men. And surprisingly, some of the more common reasons that men cheated actually began long before they started cheating to begin with.

If you’re worried that you’re married to a cheater, you may be missing some huge red flags in your own behavior that are actually leaving your relationship open to an affair because of your fear.

Here are 3 things women do when they’re afraid their husband is cheating that actually push him away from them:

1. You expect more from him when it comes to communicating (with less room for messing up)

You may often feel jealous or out of control because your man doesn’t communicate with you the way you think he should.

Men can seem dismissive, distracted, and unresponsive, and women may take that to mean you’re being dismissed, you’re unimportant, and you aren’t being heard. None of those feelings build trust and intimacy.

It’s not hard to go from that point to, “He must be hiding something from me,” which makes you insecure in your relationship and concerned that he’s cheating.

This in turn may lead you to lashing out or accusing him of something when you’re angry or upset.

Most men have tunnel vision when on the computer, watching television, or reading … and they are multi-taskers. It’s not because they’re lazy or self-centered; it’s the way their brains are “wired.” This might lead to them seeming dismissive when you talk.

Make sure when you approach him with an issue, you have his undivided attention. A quick, “Hey honey, can I talk to you for a sec?” is typically all it takes.

When you call him, ask if it’s a good time to talk. Don’t assume that he can get into a whole conversation just because he answered.

If he’s busy — especially at work — he may have to interrupt you, which never feels good to either of you … even when it’s for a legitimate reason.

Many men only answer because they see that it’s you and think the call might be urgent. Others may only pick up because they’re afraid of the flack they’ll get if they don’t.

Give him the space to let you know if he talk at that moment.

If you think about it, these are things you’d do with any of your friends, clients, coworkers, your boss, or anyone you were showing consideration to. A simple check of, “Can you talk for a minute?” might save you both a lot of heartache down the line and not leave you open to worries that he’s cheating on you.

2. You take out your insecurities and jealousness on him

Jealousy can also cause double standards in communications. Men shared with me that women were open to talking about everything under the sun, but when it came to sexual needs, they often felt shamed and shut down when they tried to bring up their desires.

For instance, if your man asks you to dress up for him, perhaps put your hair up and dress like a high-powered executive, or even that you wear some sexy yoga gear while you walk around the house, you may be concerned that he’s dressing as someone that he “actually” wants to sleep with or is having an affair/fantasies of cheating with, but this often isn’t the case.

If he’s comfortable enough to ask you to do special sexy things with him, then you’re doing something

By going along with the fantasy (only if you’re OK with what he wants) you have his attention, trust, and sexual energy. Jealousy will only ruin this bond.

3. You’re not actually listening when he speaks to you

Women like to think that they’re the great communicators in relationships, but good communication starts with good listening. Many men I met with as an escort didn’t feel that the women in their lives were good listeners at all.

As a woman, you may tend to personalize ( or make up stories about) what men share instead of just listening.

You may think think if he wants you to participate in a certain activity, then it must mean you aren’t good enough as you are.

If you can take that “it’s all about me” mindset and put it aside, you can learn about your man in every way — not just sexually.

One way to open the lines to deeper communication right away is to admit when you feel jealous without blaming him for how you feel.

Try something like, “When you talk about me dressing up like a businesswoman, I couldn’t help but think you wanted me to dress like someone you’re attracted to at work. As silly as it might sound to you, I felt so jealous!”

Don’t worry about being right or wrong or look for comfort from him. Instead, state your feelings without accusation or looking for him to fix or justify what he said.

You can then start to focus on enjoying that he shared something he finds arousing with . Whether you agree to his fantasy or not, he’ll feel connected to you because you allowed him to be open without judging him.

Don’t let miscommunications and worries about cheating drive a wedge between the two of you.

Although super simple, these potent methods can help you find your peace, keep your power, and bring your man that much closer.

 

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

My new book, Angel with a Broken Wing is now for sale on Amazon!

 

https://www.amazon.com/s?k=charles+wiedenmann&ref=nb_sb_noss_1

Listen to the Phicklephilly podcast LIVE on Spotify!

Instagram: @phicklephilly    Facebook: phicklephilly    Twitter: @phicklephilly

This July 4th, Americans will spend more on beer, wine than fireworks

Americans will spend $1.6 billion on Fourth of July beer and wine, surpassing the amount they are expected to spend on fireworks, according to a new report from WalletHub.

And AAA found that a record 48.9 million Americans plan to travel over the holiday, a 4.1 percent increase from last year.

“This holiday builds on the strong travel demand seen for Memorial Day, and with schools now out of session across the country, families coast to coast are eager to travel,” Paula Twidale, vice president of AAA Travel, said in a news release.
For those living in Philadelphia or spending their holiday in the city, Visit Philadelphia compiled an Independence Day guide describing the annual Wawa Welcome America festival, which includes the Party on the Parkway, free or pay-as-you-wish entrance to 22 museums and attractions, and a birthday party at the Independence Visitor Center with Betsy Ross.
AAA warned travelers of delays near major cities, and the mix of commuters and holiday travelers on Wednesday was expected to make it the worst day for traffic. Delays nationwide are expected to increase about 9 percent, but around major cities, commutes could take up to four times as long.
“With record-level travelers hitting the road this holiday, drivers must be prepared for delays around our major metros,” said Trevor Reed, transportation analyst at INRIX Inc., a Washington-based transportation analytics company.
The Fourth of July celebrations include an expected $1 billion being spent on fireworks, $6.8 billion on food, and $5.4 million worth of imported American flags, according to the WalletHub report. And 150 million hot dogs are eaten each year.
Although more Americans (61 percent) plan to have a cookout than celebrate with fireworks (40 percent), Philadelphia city leaders still encourage residents to leave the fireworks to those trained to set them off.
Last year, five people died from fireworks-related injuries nationwide, according to a report from the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.
“While it can be tempting to get in on the action on July Fourth and other holidays, we always encourage Philadelphians to leave fireworks to the experts,” Mayor Jim Kenney said in a statement.
Most Americans do celebrate the nation’s Independence Day, but the National Retail Federation found in a separate report that total spending on food items is down about 5.5 percent from a high of $7.15 billion in 2017.
Still, Americans seem to be getting into the patriotic spirit. Two-thirds of Northeast Americans own an American flag and say they have themed-apparel, according to the report from the National Retail Federation and Prosper Insights & Analytics.
Americans seem to be spending more on Independence Day in the Northeast, too. The retailers group found that this region will spend an average of $78.40 on food, anywhere from about $7 to $12 more per person than the Midwest, West, and South.

 

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

My new book, Angel with a Broken Wing is now for sale on Amazon!

 

https://www.amazon.com/s?k=charles+wiedenmann&ref=nb_sb_noss_1

Listen to the Phicklephilly podcast LIVE on Spotify!

Instagram: @phicklephilly    Facebook: phicklephilly    Twitter: @phicklephilly

14 Memorable Fourth of July Date Ideas

Wondering how to spend your holiday this independence day? Here are 14 perfectly patriotic and fun Fourth of July date ideas to have a memorable time.

It’s that time of the year again.

For many of us, the Fourth of July is just another holiday to party hard, sleep in or lounge around at home.

But this time around, it’s time you do some something different with your loved one.

This independence day, indulge in a few activities that are fun and yet, patriotic!

14 Fourth of July date ideas

Do you remember the happy Independence Day celebrations you loved so much when you were a child?

What’s stopping you from doing that, now that you’re all grown up?

Instead of just waiting for the fireworks to light up the sky at night, go on out there and enjoy the day.

Here are 14 great ways to make your Independence Day date memorable, fun and oh-so-perfect!

#1 Raise a flag. This is something you can do first thing in the morning!

Plan ahead the earlier night and get together with all your friends or with your lover early in the day, and raise the national flag in front of your house. Sing the national anthem under the star spangled banner. Really, it’s not going to sound corny at all. In fact, it’ll help you realize just how important the day really is!

And finish the morning off by having breakfast out together in the yard, sharing stories or making plans for the rest of the day.

#2 Create a tradition. Do you have any Fourth of July traditions that you and your lover rigorously follow? If not, then this year is your best excuse to start a new tradition with your partner, whatever it may be, and make a promise to follow it every year. It’ll be a memorable and romantic way to enjoy the Independence Day every year.

And many years later, you can look back at this Fourth of July and fondly remember how the tradition started in the first place.

#3 Have lunch at a restaurant. But not just any restaurant. Pick a restaurant with a patriotic menu with little flags all around! It’ll be a lot of fun to try a few new themed dishes, and it’s a great way to show respect to this special day too.

#4 Watch patriotic movies together. If you just want to relax at home, and yet, want to experience the spirit of Independence Day, pick up a few DVDs where the theme of the movie is about fighting for independence *The Patriot is a good one*. And if you’re not into movies, just watch the live celebration shows on the TV.

#5 Cook with your lover. Bake a cake with your lover or make cupcakes. Everyone loves them, and baking the cakes and dressing them up in blues and reds can be a fun time. Or prepare a whole meal with a patriotic theme.

#6 Dress up and take photographs. Dress up in your blues, reds and white on this day. A happy relationship is built on memories, so make sure you dress up in your fancy attire and take a lot of pictures together *even if the photos are too personal to show off!* After all, what better way to celebrate the Fourth of July than by creating more memories that can last a lifetime!

#7 Visit historical museums. Plan a special outing with your partner on this day. Go to historical museums or places of historical importance if it’s a short drive away.

#8 Attend a celebration. Every city has several community activities and get-togethers to celebrate the Fourth of July. Your partner and you could go to a concert, a baseball game, or just spend the day at a picnic or by watching a parade. Go out there and have fun, after all, there’s so many things you can do in your own city.

#9 Watch a war reenactment. If you get the opportunity to watch a war reenactment around your place, don’t miss it. It’s worth watching, especially if there are a lot of people around in their celebratory best.

#10 Plan a road trip. Go on a road trip with your partner. But make sure you adorn your car by sticking a lot of little flags all around it. It’ll be a lot of fun, and even if you’re just driving around a few blocks and not down the freeway, you’re still spreading the good word.

#11 Have a barbeque. Invite all your friends over and spend the evening catching up with each other. As long as there’s an endless supply of  hot dogs and beer, everyone will have a fun time.

#12 Have a campfire. Rent a lakeside cabin or spend the evening on the beach. Light a bonfire and spend some quality time with each other, watching the stars and the fireworks brighten up the night sky.

#13 A night of fireworks. If you’ve got kids around or love lighting up the night sky, buy your own fireworks and sparklers. But if you just like watching the night sky light up, go to a fireworks show with your partner and cheer out loud!

#14 Spend time with family. There’s no better way to spend the Fourth of July than by spending quality time with the ones you love. It’s a perfect way to enjoy the Independence Day. Get together on this holiday with all your loved ones, and enjoy the day by planning the activities together or by taking off to an all day event.

Use these 14 Fourth of July date ideas and you’ll have a great time with your loved one. But remember to have fun responsibly, and most importantly, respect your flag and honor it.

 

 

 

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

My new book, Angel with a Broken Wing is now for sale on Amazon!

 

https://www.amazon.com/s?k=charles+wiedenmann&ref=nb_sb_noss_1

Listen to the Phicklephilly podcast LIVE on Spotify!

Instagram: @phicklephilly    Facebook: phicklephilly    Twitter: @phicklephilly

 

Should You Ask Your Partner To Spend The Holidays With You? Experts Weigh In

If you only started dating someone this year, you may be wondering whether you should ask them to spend the holidays with you or not. While the holiday season can bring you and your partner much closer together, is can also give your relationship some added stress. Since it’s going to be your first holiday season as a couple, you never know which way it’s going to go. With the holidays being right around the corner, it’s about that time to discuss your plans especially if you’re thinking of asking your partner to spend the holidays with you. But is your relationship actually ready for it this year?

“The holidays are stressful for everyone,” Ashley Campana, matchmaker with Lisa Clampitt Matchmaking, tells Bustle. “Multiply that by two people together for the holidays, a dash of family, and a sprinkle of expectations, and it’s a likely scenario that the stress level will be higher than it would be alone.”

There’s no set time frame for how long you should be dating someone before you spend the holidays with them. As dating coach Anna Morgenstern, tells Bustle, “It’s less about how long you’ve been with your partner, and more about how far the relationship has progressed.”

Every relationship moves at its own pace. While inviting your partner to come home for the holidays can seem like a harmless idea, navigating the holiday season in a new relationship can be really challenging. Here are some things you may want to consider first, according to experts.

1. Is Your Partner Ready To Meet Your Family?

Inviting your partner to spend the holidays with you may involve meeting your family for the first time.

Shutterstock

“If you just started dating, the last thing you want is your 92-year-old grandmother asking the both of you when you are getting married and reminding you that by your age, she had already delivered a child,” Dr. Sanam Hafeez, a neuropsychologist who specializes in relationships, tells Bustle. “No new relationship needs that pressure, as much as we love grandma.”

According to her, meeting the family is without a doubt the largest challenge of spending the holidays with a partner. There’s always that stress to impress, which can cause anxiety in the most confident of people. If your holiday tradition includes having a large family gathering or there are major cultural differences, it can be a little overwhelming. You want to make sure that your partner is ready and willing to handle whatever gets thrown their way.

2. Is Traveling In Your Partner’s Budget?

A 2018 Experian survey found that Americans spend an average of $930 on holiday travel. “New relationships walk the line of being new but committed, so holiday traveling can be a challenging aspect because of the expenses,” Hafeez says. Your partner may want to spend the holidays with you, but it’s important to be realistic. According to Hafeez, someone may ask themselves if they can really justify spending hundreds of dollars to travel, especially if the relationship is still pretty new. If you know that your partner is struggling financially, or if they’re saving up to buy something big, you may want to wait until next year.

3. Is Your Relationship Mature Enough?

You don't need to date someone for a long time before asking them to spend the holidays with you.

Shutterstock

There’s no set amount of time you should be dating someone before you decide to take them home for the holidays. Some people know they’re meant to be together after a month, and some people take years to figure that out. According to Hafeez, you can’t measure the maturity of a relationship in days or months. But you can assess it by asking yourself this one question: Am I proud to be with this person? “You can be happy with a new relationship but may not be confident enough to bring your partner around the family,” Hafeez says. When you’re confident in the status of your relationship and you know that your partner is going to stick around when things get tough, you’re ready to spend the holidays together. If not, that’s OK. “It’s completely valid to give yourself more time before bringing your significant other to the family holiday, especially if you have a birthday coming up a few months later,” Hafeez says.

4. Do You See A Future With Your Partner?

It’s nice to have someone you can bring along to your big holiday gathering. But the holiday season can have a way of making new relationships feel like they have to move faster than they’re actually ready for. According to Morgenstern, you should only introduce someone to your family that you truly see a long-term future with. Spending the holidays with someone can be a pretty big deal. “If you’re not completely sure about them, asking them to come home with you will mislead them with your intentions,” Morgenstern says. “Make sure you’re on the same page about your relationship before deciding to spend the holidays together.”

5. What Does Spending The Holidays Together Mean To Your Partner?

Talking about your holiday plans can strengthen your communication skills.

Shutterstock

“Spending the holidays together is generally an intimate activity that communicates you care about someone and intend to deepen the relationship,” marriage counselor Brent Sweitzer, LPC, tells Bustle. “But don’t assume it means the same thing to your partner as it does to you.”

Some people may see this as the next big step in the relationship, and others might see it as just another thing you can do together. It’s important to talk to your partner about your feelings and expectations. It can even open up a discussion about your family’s traditions and unspoken family rules. “This will set in place good communication habits for both of you about expectations (particularly around the holidays), regardless of whether the relationship becomes a fully committed one,” Sweitzer says.

As nice as it would be to spend the holidays with your partner, it’s important to consider if your relationship is actually ready for it first. If you feel like it’s the right time, talk to your partner. Having an open discussion with your partner can help you decide what’s best for your relationship this year.

 

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

21 of our Favorite Holiday Gag Gifts — All from Amazon

I love this crap!

Happy Holiday, Everyone!

 

A warning to those who leave their children unattended in cafes

unattendedchildren

Amazon

“Unattended children will be given espresso and a free kitten” sign, $12.99

Perfect for that friend who owns a cafe and just can’t figure out how to deal with the unbridled children of their caffeine-fiend clientele.

 

A (loudly) screaming goat figurine and booklet

screaminggoat

Amazon

“The Screaming Goat” book and figure, $7.55

If they still can’t get enough of that Screaming Goat video on YouTube, this is as blood-curdling — and annoying — as you might imagine. Trust me, I have one on my desk. My colleagues love me.

Blinker fluid, for the uninclined

blinker fluid

Amazon

Blinker Fluid, $6.95

We can all think of someone who this is for. Maybe they’ll get the message now.

The world’s smallest violin

violin

Amazon

3-Inch Miniature Violin Replica (with case), $11.98

Sorry, no pony this year, either, kiddo. Play it, momma.

A mock video game to drop the hint that it’s time they pull their weight around the house

extremechores

Amazon

Extreme Chores: Motion Controlled Video Game (empty box), $7.49

For little Lord Fauntleroy. Yeah, maybe coal didn’t quite get the message across, but this ought to do the trick. Note that this box comes empty, so you can also fill it with coal, if you so please.

Your face on a pair of socks

facesocks

Amazon

Custom Photo Face Socks, $15.59

Put the mug of their best friend (or worst enemy) on a pair of socks. Either way, they’ll wear them. Trust us.

For those who ask too many questions

'what if? Serious Scientific Answers to Absurd Hypothetical Questions'

Amazon

“What If? Serious Scientific Answers to Absurd Hypothetical Questions,” $11.49

Great coffee table (or commode) material for the coveter of useless information.

Help them slow that little tyke down

toddler tamer gag

Amazon

Toddler Tamers (gag kit), $7.99

Parents, rejoice!

An ice cream lock, so they’ll stop blaming you for being the culprit

icecreamlock

Amazon

Ben & Jerry’s Euphori-Lock Ice Cream Lock, $24.19

For the stingy one who’ll never share their ice cream.

Poems by cats about what cats do best

icouldpeeonthis

Amazon

“I Could Pee on This: And Other Poems by Cats,” $9.89

For your friend, family member, or housemate who’s just a little too in love with their feline and could stand a reality check.

A muffler whistle, to terrorize both them and the neighborhood

mufflerwhistle

Amazon

Muffler Whistles, $8.79

To the know-it-all mechanic(s) in your life: Fix this!

Your face (or theirs) on a real potato

potatoface

Amazon

Potato Pal, $17.99

Your face on a potato. How could they not savor this forever and ever?

One dozen rattlesnake eggs (keep warm for best results)

rattlesnakeeggs

Amazon

(Fake) Rattlesnake Eggs, $7.99

Best delivered incubator-warm.

A bag of “the world’s strongest coffee”

deathwishcoffee

Amazon

Death Wish Coffee Co. Coffee, $19.99

We only hope they’ll get this is a gag.

An impossible-to-solve puzzle

ravensburgerpuzzle

Amazon

Ravensburger Puzzle, $15.68

Something to finally stump that very special whiz kid you know.

A remote-controlled scorpion (be sure to pre-open and gift-wrap this one)

rcscorpion

Amazon

Remote-Controlled Scorpion, $15.99

Have the remote handy for when they open this one; it’ll work a lot better.

A game for the whole family

relativeinsanity

Amazon

Relative Insanity Party Game, $14.16

Think “Cards Against Humanity,” but for some wholesome fun for the whole family.

A personal cleansing wheel (in lieu of the bidet they keep asking for)

rotowipe

Amazon

Roto Wipe Personal Cleansing Wheel, $7.99

So they’ll finally stop pestering you for that exorbitant bidet thing they all love so much over in Europe. (Note: This is just an empty box in which to wrap your real gift.)

Instructions for gracefully approaching (and achieving) senescence

crotchety

Amazon

“How Not to Become a Crotchety Old Man,” $6.39

Dear Dad (or Grandpa)…

Snot (and tear) mittens, for those who work outdoors, or just won’t stop wiping their nose on their sleeve

snittens

Amazon

Snittens, The Original Snot Mittens, $19.99

One side for snot, the other for tears. Maybe after receiving this, they’ll stop wiping their nose on their sleeve, or their bare hands. Probably not. Either way, they actually work!

A practice putting green for the bathroom

toiletgolf

Amazon

Toilet Golf, $9.95

If their Golf Digest subscription just isn’t cutting it on long trips to the john anymore, they can always stand to work on their short game.

 

 

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

Listen to the Phicklephilly podcast LIVE on Spotify!

Instagram: @phicklephilly    Facebook: phicklephilly    Twitter: @phicklephilly

Romantic Thanksgiving date ideas

A lot of people believe that Thanksgiving isn’t Thanksgiving unless you spend it stuffing yourself silly with food, surrounded by annoying uncles and aunts. But for couples without children or whose families are far away, Thanksgiving can be a wonderful opportunity to spend some romantic time together without distractions. So skip all of the stress this Thanksgiving and plan a special day for just the two of you with one of the ideas below.

Cook a meal together for two

While playing hostess to your in-laws and simultaneously cooking a Thanksgiving meal for 10 may seem like a recipe for panic attack, cooking a turkey together with your best guy is filled with sexy opportunities. Envision sipping wine together as you stir the cranberry sauce and let your imagination run wild!

Have someone cook a meal for you

For those of you who think cooking is a chore rather than a delight, there’s nothing like enjoying a Thanksgiving dinner out on the town. Simply make a reservation, show-up and voila! While other women are spending the day slaving over a stove, you and your man can enjoy all of the pleasures of eating a five-course, candle-lit meal with none of the work.

Stay at a B&B

Holidays are so few and far between, why not extend your Thanksgiving into a Thanks-weekend and spend four days being thankful you’re not at home?

Go somewhere warm

Or even better, chuck the idea of a traditionally chilly Thanksgiving and relax the weekend away, basking in the sun at a tropical resort. The trees may not change color in Florida or the Bahamas, but there is still a lot of holiday cheer to be found there.

Watch a parade

You don’t even need to go anywhere to enjoy a romantic Thanksgiving. Sipping hot chocolate and holding hands together while watching a local parade can be just as lovely.

Or snuggle on the couch

Don’t even get dressed! Thanksgiving is one holiday that’s made for sleeping in, so don’t hesitate to ignore that alarm for once. You can always TiVo the parade and watch it later.

Volunteer at a soup kitchen

For couples in pursuit of the true meaning of Thanksgiving, soup kitchens and charity organizations are always in need of volunteers on the holiday when attendance is even higher than usual.

Go see a movie

One of my favorite Thanksgiving traditions is going out to the movies with my boyfriend, just the two of us.

 

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

Prince Andrew is a Fucking Liar

The Duke of York claimed on Saturday night that he could not have had sex with a teenage girl in the London home of British socialite Ghislaine Maxwell because he was at home after attending a children’s party at Pizza Express in Woking.

Prince Andrew gave the startling explanation in a bombshell interview with Emily Maitlis for BBC’s Newsnight in which he was grilled about his relationship with the disgraced financier Jeffrey Epstein, who has been exposed as a pedophile.

In a sometimes rambling and contradictory account of their friendship, the prince insisted he had not had sex with any women trafficked by Epstein in any of his properties. He confirmed that he had flown on Epstein’s now notorious jet, nicknamed the Lolita Express, and stayed on his private island and at his home in Palm Beach, as well as at his New York mansion.

“If you’re a man it is a positive act to have sex with somebody,” the prince explained. “You have to …. take some sort of positive action and so therefore if you try to forget it’s very difficult to try and forget a positive action and I do not remember anything.”

Of the allegations that he had sex with Virginia Giuffre, formerly known as Virginia Roberts, when she was 17, the prince categorically denied it ever happened.

Roberts has said that they partied at Tramp nightclub in London on 10 March 2001, before going back to Maxwell’s Belgravia mews house where she claims she had sex with Andrew.

The prince said: “I was with the children and I’d taken Beatrice to a Pizza Express in Woking for a party at I suppose four or five in the afternoon. And then because the duchess [Sarah Ferguson] was away, we have a simple rule in the family that when one is away the other is there.”

A photograph of the prince with his arm around Roberts’s waist has been widely circulated, but the prince repeatedly said in his Newsnight interview he had “no recollection of that photograph ever being taken”. He said the picture appeared to have been taken upstairs in Maxwell’s house, somewhere “I don’t think I ever went”.

Yesterday Giuffre retweeted several disparaging tweets about the prince including one that read: “Prince Andrew’s shocking interview was an attempt to save his reputation – but it just raised more questions.”

In the interview the prince said he last saw Maxwell earlier this year. He defended his relationship with Epstein, who was found dead earlier this year in prison while being held on sex trafficking charges, saying it had opened up opportunities for him as he transitioned out of the navy: “In the navy it’s a pretty isolated business because you’re out at sea the whole time and I was going to become the special representative for international trade and development. The opportunities I was given to learn either by him or because of him were actually very useful.”

He confirmed that Epstein had been a guest at Windsor and Sandringham and that he attended a dinner celebrating the financier’s release from prison. An arrest warrant was issued for Epstein in May 2006, for sexual assault of a minor. The prince confirmed that he invited Epstein to Princess Beatrice’s 18th birthday the following July and was unaware that the warrant had been issued.

In 2010, the prince was photographed walking with Epstein in New York’s Central Park – two years after Epstein’s first conviction for soliciting a minor for prostitution. When it was pointed out during the interview that he was staying at the house of a “convicted sex offender”, he said: “It was a convenient place to stay… At the end of the day, with the benefit of all the hindsight one can have, it was definitely the wrong thing to do. But at the time, I felt it was the honourable and right thing to do. And I admit fully that my judgment was probably coloured by my tendency to be too honourable but that is just the way it is.”

The prince said he went to the US to tell Epstein they could no longer see each other, as “doing it over the telephone was the chicken’s way”. Of claims that witnesses saw young girls entering Epstein’s mansion, the prince said: “you have to understand that his house, I described it … almost as a railway station … there were people coming in and out… all the time.”

He appeared to be open to giving a statement under oath, something Epstein’s victims have been demanding: “If push came to shove and the legal advice was to do so, then I would be duty bound to do so.” Before the broadcast, Gloria Allred, a lawyer acting for a number of Epstein’s victims, said: “Rather than just going on television he, I think, would be well served to just say I’m willing to take the oath and appear at a deposition.”

The prince said that his association with the financier had been “a constant sore in the family”.

The Duke of York claimed on Saturday night that he could not have had sex with a teenage girl in the London home of British socialite Ghislaine Maxwell because he was at home after attending a children’s party at Pizza Express in Woking.

Prince Andrew gave the startling explanation in a bombshell interview with Emily Maitlis for BBC’s Newsnight in which he was grilled about his relationship with the disgraced financier Jeffrey Epstein, who has been exposed as a pedophile.

In a sometimes rambling and contradictory account of their friendship, the prince insisted he had not had sex with any women trafficked by Epstein in any of his properties. He confirmed that he had flown on Epstein’s now notorious jet, nicknamed the Lolita Express, and stayed on his private island and at his home in Palm Beach, as well as at his New York mansion.

“If you’re a man it is a positive act to have sex with somebody,” the prince explained. “You have to …. take some sort of positive action and so therefore if you try to forget it’s very difficult to try and forget a positive action and I do not remember anything.”

Of the allegations that he had sex with Virginia Giuffre, formerly known as Virginia Roberts, when she was 17, the prince categorically denied it ever happened.

Roberts has said that they partied at Tramp nightclub in London on 10 March 2001, before going back to Maxwell’s Belgravia mews house where she claims she had sex with Andrew.

The prince said: “I was with the children and I’d taken Beatrice to a Pizza Express in Woking for a party at I suppose four or five in the afternoon. And then because the duchess [Sarah Ferguson] was away, we have a simple rule in the family that when one is away the other is there.”

A photograph of the prince with his arm around Roberts’s waist has been widely circulated, but the prince repeatedly said in his Newsnight interview he had “no recollection of that photograph ever being taken”. He said the picture appeared to have been taken upstairs in Maxwell’s house, somewhere “I don’t think I ever went”.

Yesterday Giuffre retweeted several disparaging tweets about the prince including one that read: “Prince Andrew’s shocking interview was an attempt to save his reputation – but it just raised more questions.”

In the interview the prince said he last saw Maxwell earlier this year. He defended his relationship with Epstein, who was found dead earlier this year in prison while being held on sex trafficking charges, saying it had opened up opportunities for him as he transitioned out of the navy: “In the navy it’s a pretty isolated business because you’re out at sea the whole time and I was going to become the special representative for international trade and development. The opportunities I was given to learn either by him or because of him were actually very useful.”

He confirmed that Epstein had been a guest at Windsor and Sandringham and that he attended a dinner celebrating the financier’s release from prison. An arrest warrant was issued for Epstein in May 2006, for sexual assault of a minor. The prince confirmed that he invited Epstein to Princess Beatrice’s 18th birthday the following July and was unaware that the warrant had been issued.

In 2010, the prince was photographed walking with Epstein in New York’s Central Park – two years after Epstein’s first conviction for soliciting a minor for prostitution. When it was pointed out during the interview that he was staying at the house of a “convicted sex offender”, he said: “It was a convenient place to stay… At the end of the day, with the benefit of all the hindsight one can have, it was definitely the wrong thing to do. But at the time, I felt it was the honorable and right thing to do. And I admit fully that my judgment was probably colored by my tendency to be too honorable but that is just the way it is.”

The prince said he went to the US to tell Epstein they could no longer see each other, as “doing it over the telephone was the chicken’s way”. Of claims that witnesses saw young girls entering Epstein’s mansion, the prince said: “you have to understand that his house, I described it … almost as a railway station … there were people coming in and out… all the time.”

He appeared to be open to giving a statement under oath, something Epstein’s victims have been demanding: “If push came to shove and the legal advice was to do so, then I would be duty bound to do so.” Before the broadcast, Gloria Allred, a lawyer acting for a number of Epstein’s victims, said: “Rather than just going on television he, I think, would be well served to just say I’m willing to take the oath and appear at a deposition.”

The prince said that his association with the financier had been “a constant sore in the family”.

 

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!

Instagram: @phicklephilly    Facebook: phicklephilly    Twitter: @phicklephilly

%d bloggers like this: