Renegade – 1978 to 1979 – Chapter 1 – My First Band

I lived on Magee Street in Northeast Philadelphia back then. I was walking up my street on that fateful night back in 1978. I was 16 years old. I saw this other kid carrying a bass guitar. He was my height, blonde hair with glasses and peach fuzz all over the lower part of his face. He looked like a total nerd.

I went up to him and said: “Hey, I always see you passing by carrying that bass. Do you need a singer?” I think I genuinely startled the guy.

“Well, probably. Because our guitarist Jerry just quit. Well get him back and tell him you’ve got a singer.”

“I’m Chaz.”

“I’m Larry.”

I get his phone number and give him mine. I guess he had a pen on him and I think he wrote his number on a pack of matches I had in my pocket. That’s how it was done back in the 70’s before cell phones. Matchbooks and cocktail napkins. Then you would have to call a stranger’s house and his mom or another family would answer the phone.

So a few days later Larry brings Jerry over and we go down to my basement for an audition.

Jerry is a tall, lanky Italian guy who is probably a year older that me. But since he’s Italian I can see that he has to shave every day and already has hair on his chest. I’m as smooth as a peach.

I think Jerry just wanted someone fresh to jam with and wanted to check me out and see if I was a fit for he and Larry. I don’t think he really cared if I was much of a singer. I had spent a few years in choir in grade school, but beyond that it was zero experience.

I put the song Dream On, by Aerosmith and started to sing along. This was a vinyl record that belonged to my sister Janice that I was playing on my father’s record player. I loved Aerosmith back then.

So I sing the whole song, and I’m nervously waiting for a response.

Jerry: “Would your mom let us practice here?”

Me: “Right here in the basement?”

Jerry: “Well not right here, more like right over there.” (Pointing and ever the smartass)

“I’m sure that would be okay.” (Bold Faced Lie – No idea if that would be okay)

“We’ll tell Jack our drummer and we’ll come over Thursday with our gear.”

That night I asked my mother and she was cool with it. She said it would be fine to have the boys come over and play in the basement after school.

I was overjoyed! Not only was I going to be a singer in a rock band, (Dream coming true) We were going to be jamming in my basement. This could up my cool factor in the neighborhood, which had been very low for years.

Back in those days my dad worked at a bank down the shore. He lived in our Wildwood, NJ house during the week and would mostly come home on the weekends. It was my parents version of getting separated. They were always a united front as parents to us kids but they fought a lot. My dad was a good man, and a decent father to us but between his high anxiety and OCD he was pretty hard on my mom. He’s hard to get along with, let alone live with. So I was happy to have him out of the house all week. Life was so much more chill around the house. Peaceful.

One of the things my mother would let me do is put a small record player on the chair beside me at dinner. I would play these 45 rpm records and me and my sisters would all laugh and sing along with the songs. We didn’t do it every night but enough that I remember it. After dinner my mom would wash the dishes and I would dry them. I remember this as one of my fondest memories of my mother. Because it was just the two of us.

We’d have the radio on and be listening to WYSP or WMMR which back then were the only two rock stations on the radio. There was no such thing at satellite radio, YouTube, Pandora, Spotify or I tunes. Just your local rock and roll radio stations. She liked the Rolling Stones and even thought that David Bowie was a fine boy. I remember one album that could be found in every white suburban home was, Frampton Comes Alive. The big hit from that record was a song entitled, “Do You Feel Like We Do?” It got heavy rotation that year, and I remember explaining to my mom what a talkbox was.

This is a brilliant clip and I’d never seen it until I went looking for it to include in this piece. Please watch the whole thing (because it’s awesome!) but if you suck and you just want to see what a talkbox is, skip to the six minute mark.

 

 

The sound from the guitar goes up through the tube and into the musician’s mouth and the guitar sound and notes come out and he can form words with them. Cool as shit, and I totally wanted one at some point, but that quickly passed. How many times can you use that trick in your songs. Probably only one before you become known as the talkbox guy. It’s an effect, not a sound or style. But still way cool in the hands of the great Peter Frampton.

By the way, that clip is from a show that came on Saturday nights. It’s called “Burt Sugarman’s Midnight Special.” There was that and “Don Kirchner’s Rock Concert”, were the only places to see your favorite bands of the day play live on TV. This was many years before videos and MTV. But it was on late at night and normally I was asleep by then and rarely saw any of them. If you’d like, I recommend you YouTube these programs because they are truly time capsules of joy.

Those were good times in our lives. Everybody was healthy and happy for the most part. Dad would swing home most weekends and it was greatest hits with him. A little bit goes a long way and you know by Sunday night or Monday morning he’s back down the shore.

I was really looking forward to being part of a rock and roll band! I love rock and now I’m going to be able to MAKE rock!!!

 

 

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Cherie – Chapter 16 – Brief Repose

Cherie is off for winter break from school, so she has some flexibility. Not much, but a little. She was able to come downtown today to meet me for lunch. If my daughter Lorelei was working the lunch shift instead of dinner at her job today, lunch with Cherie would have been a completely different experience.

But I’m always happy to see my love. Cherie had an appointment in the morning. She texted me to say she was finished and available to meet. We met at 17th and Chestnut. It was raining today and I remembered my umbrella this morning, but forgot it when I left the office for lunch. So this time, instead of me sharing my umbrella with her like on our first date, she was sharing her purple one with me. I’m holding it over her head. She doesn’t seem to mind the rain as usual.

We arrive at Devil’s Alley. It’s a little after 11am, which is brilliant because the place is dead. The food at Devil’s is great, but the service has always been a little slow. It’s been that way for years. But… if you get there early it’s a whole different story. The place is dead.

The host gets off the phone and asks us where we want to sit. I say upstairs and up the steps we go. We get a nice quiet table in the back. Our server is on point with the specials, but we know what we want. We order the amazing dry rub wings to start. I think they’re the best in the city. She goes with the blue cheese burger and I get the pulled pork sliders. Mine comes with coleslaw and hers with fries. She likes slaw and I like fries, so we’ve got the perfect share plate.

It’s really nice to see her. She’s wearing her glasses today and she looks sexy smart. I tell her than I noticed she wore her contacts last time we were together. “That’s so I could see you!”  she says. I tell her that men are visual animals and it’s always better in bed when we can see our partner.

“I know, that’s why I woke you up at 6am last Saturday to fuck me again, so you could see me.” she says.

I just laugh as the waiter approaches. She loves to play with me like that. It only makes me want her more. But we’re in a restaurant, and our next intimate encounter is a week away.

We’re chatting about the holidays and life. She finally got a new phone from her dad for christmas. She loves it. I don’t know what she had before, but she didn’t like it. It seemed like it was always going dead. She whips out the iPhone 7 and it is brand new. My phone seems old in comparison. (As long as it works I don’t care what kind of phone I have) It’s lean and slim like her.

I’m happy to be having lunch with her. Just sitting across the table from her is wonderful. Looking into her eyes and holding her hand. She never wants anything. She didn’t even want anything for Christmas. I had a glorious Christmas with her, but the gifts we exchanged didn’t come from a store. She says she really doesn’t want things. She’s happy with what she has. If she wants something, she’ll work and save for it. I asked her if she and her son’s father ever exchanged gifts at Christmas. She said they did, but it was no big deal. She said that she would rather see him put the money for her gift towards something else for her son. That’s really sweet and selfless.

It’s a good week for me to spend time with her. Work is slow. The rain has stopped, so after lunch we head down to the store to get a case for her new phone. I can’t believe how expensive some of these cases are now. That’s a cottage industry unto itself. I saw cases that were over sixty dollars! For a hunk of plastic? That seems like a ripoff to me, but if you drop one of these new elegant phones on the pavement…

The sales girl who was helping us showed the strength of  the case on her phone. While talking to us, she literally tossed the phone like twenty feet away. It bounced against the front of the counter. She goes over and picks up the phone and it was fine. We were sold. I found it a brilliant sales tactic and I congratulate the girl.

Cherie picks out a winner and it’s the same make as mine. (Otter Box)

The rain has stopped. Cherie says she has to use the restroom. I know where every liquor store and clean bathroom is in Philly. “Follow me.” I take her to Sofitel. They have super clean and very private bathrooms. It’s the only place my buddy Church will go for an ‘away game!’ The Ritz Carlton has my other favorite bathrooms in the city. You gotta know stuff like this when you live in a city.

Cherie’s been working so many hours at her two hospital jobs, that I can see that she’s just tired. I think between finals at school, raising her son, and all the hours she works, it’s taking a toll on her. She says that she may have to leave the one job once school starts again, because it’s just too much. Sometime you have to choose between money and health. I really care about her and her well-being is far more important to me than anything else. She did really well in school this past semester, so she’s moving forward with her education.

She said she walked past a place called the Velvet Lily earlier today. I know the place and the owner. It’s a high-end sex shop down in Midtown Village. They sell all sorts of toys and what not. I tell her we’re too far to go back down there, because I have to be at the salon at 3pm and she has a 2:38 train to catch. But there’s a place on Walnut called The Passional that has stuff like that. I have never set foot in the place, but Cherie loves sex and I may get some ideas based on what she looks at in the store.

We go in, and it’s downstairs from a head shop called Wonderland. First thing I see is a bunch of silly bachelorette party crap. Which I find sort of obnoxious. Cherie isn’t interested in it either. I point out a wedge-shaped pillow that improves the angle of things during sex. “As if you don’t twist me and flip me around every which way enough?” She smiles. I laugh and move on. The store isn’t that good, and I wonder how they stay in business. Don’t most people buy all this stuff online now? I’m thinking about getting some things, and I can probably just go through Amazon.

It looks like Cherie is unenthused in regard to this store, so we leave. I think it’s cute that she always asks where we’re going because she doesn’t know her way around Philly. I always assure her where we are, and where we’re going, and when we’ll get to where we have to be. I don’t mind it at all. She makes so many decisions every day, that she likes relying on me to do all of that when we’re together.

We know it’s coming. The time when we’ll have to part. I take her into the BNY Mellon building to escape the damp chilly day. I know the whole Suburban Station network like the back of my hand. I can even tell you at any point where we are in relation to the street level when I’m down there. Like my father before me, I’m an explorer. My dad could always find ways to locate things and shortcuts to everywhere. That’s when having anxiety and OCD are a good thing. You’re always looking for and angle or an alternate escape route.

I take her to her train platform and we sit down on one of the red metal benches. I’m close to her. I take her hands in mine. The train is coming soon. I kiss her neck, and whisper to her:

“I miss you already.”

She whispers back. “We’ll be together soon.”

A slight breeze. It’s coming. A light appears down the track, and the train roars into the station. We rise and I walk her over to the door.

We kiss, and she’s gone.

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day at 8am & 12pm EST.

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The Most Popular Way to Meet a Significant Other Has Nothing to Do With Online Dating

 

Is it time to say so long to swiping?

While dating apps are as popular as ever, they might not be the best way to meet a potential romantic partner. That’s the takeaway from a recent survey, which found that only 8% of people polled said that they hooked up with their significant other via online dating or a dating app.

What was the most common way for couples to meet? Through mutual friends, according to the survey, which was conducted by market research company ReportLinker. An impressive 39% of respondents replied that they met their spouse this way—just like Prince Harry and Meghan Markle.

Meeting at work came in second place, with 15% of respondents answering that they met their significant other at the office. Next on the list was in a bar or public area (12%), through a sport/religion/hobby events (9%), family (7%), and school (6%). Just 1% of poll takers said that they met their beloved at a speed-dating event.

The poll results cast doubt on the prospect of finding lasting love online, and instead relying on friends (or your local pub) to help you find The One. When asked what they thought was the main drawback of online dating, 30% of single respondents said that potential love interests on sites and apps were “not serious” and 21% said “more lies.”

Still, singles continue to search for a significant other digitally. Respondents who said that they were currently dating online had a profile up on an average of 2.4 websites.

The results were based on replies from 501 singles and 551 coupled-up people in the U.S. Speaking of couples, the survey also found that 6% of the people who described themselves as having a spouse were still registered on a dating website or app.

 

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7 Things Women Expect On A First Date

Landing yourself a first date is only the first step in securing a smooth transition into an eventful and exciting night. A first date is about an impression. A woman wants to feel that the man she’s with has not only thought about the date, but also prepared accordingly.

Let me help you decipher her unspoken expectations for the evening and what she wants you to do but would never actually say.

1- Go the extra mile… or two

If you greet her with a red rose and a smile you’re sure to get a warm response. But why not turn up the heat and offer her a less stereotypical treat? If you already know some details about this woman, use the information to your advantage. If her favorite color is purple, give her a purple flower. Otherwise, use your imagination.

If she’s the playful type, she might enjoy a bouquet of lollipops to sweeten the night. Or, if she’s of a more intellectual persuasion, perhaps offering her a copy of your favorite book might stack the odds in your favor. The key is creativity — she’ll be impressed if you’ve shown that you not only got her something, but that you thought about her while doing it.

2- Be polite, not pushy
She may not tell you that etiquette is a priority, but be sure that she’s keeping an eye on what you are, and perhaps more important, what you aren’t doing. It’s the little details that make the difference, like chewing with your mouth closed. Remember; nothing you have to say is either important or funny enough that it can’t be said after you swallow.

Do offer to open the door for her, but if she insists on doing it herself, be sure and let her. Another rule to remember: any stories that involve vomit or secretions of any sort (no matter how funny or appropriate you think they are) will generally be a complete turnoff to a woman.

3- Be complimentary
Many men forget to notice and compliment their date’s appearance. There must be something about her outfit, her hair or the way she smells that you like. You can rest assured that she’s spent a good portion of her time primping and preparing for this first date, and it’s important that you acknowledge her efforts.

Find out what you should do during dinner and how to leave her with a lasting impression…

4- Be curious about her
You’re nervous and trying to make sure that she thinks you’re better (and more original) than the last guy who showed up at her door with a red rose. The result can often be you talking about all the things you’ve accomplished while neglecting to ask her about her interests. Your intentions might be to keep the conversation flowing, but a monologue actually makes for a more uncomfortable evening than a few awkward pauses. So be sure to ask her about herself; just don’t turn it into an interview.

5- Be assertive, not aggressive
It’s important that you show her you’re confident. But, it’s also important not to blur the line between being assertive and aggressive while interacting with her, as well as those who might even prove to be allies on your first date. When dealing with your waiter, she’d prefer you be courteous than cantankerous. If what you order isn’t what you get, then by all means tell your waiter, but don’t raise your voice and demand it be taken back. A polite smile and a simple assertion that your order has been confused is the perfect time for you to show your willingness to forgive while your waiter tries to make it up to you (all the while making you look even better). Likewise, if the movie you both wanted to see is sold out, take it in good humor and most importantly…

6- Always have a backup plan
If the plans you made unravel at the last moment, relax. You can always rely on plan B to make the most of what might have been a wasted night. She’ll either be impressed by your on-the-spot creativity or glowing at the thought of you considering a “just in case” scenario for your date. It doesn’t have to be overly extravagant, just make sure you have some other ideas in the event the night doesn’t come together exactly as planned. From ice skating to salsa dancing to coffee drinking — any backup option is better than no option at all.

7- Leave her impressed

The evening seems to be coming to a close; time to pull that proverbial ace from up your sleeve. You want to leave her with a lasting impression about what a wonderful time she had and how lucky she was to spend it with you. Seeing her to her door will no doubt get you further than the front door. But give her the option to welcome you in by taking it one step at a time. Offering a polite end to a wonderful evening just leaves her wanting more and gives her the chance to assert herself if she’s craving more than a kiss at night’s end. Of course, if you’ve played your cards right, she’ll be wanting more than just this one date anyway…

Go get ’em

These seven effective steps are sure-fire ways to not only impress the woman you’re with, but also to exceed her expectations. Remember; being sincere and thoughtful each step of the way guarantees success. By taking care and control of the details, you will exude confidence and keep her craving more.

 

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Intelligent People Choose to Be Less Social – Here’s Why

Do you ever dream about being a hermit? Would you prefer to live in a countryside cabin, instead of a bustling city? Would you rather stick your nose in a book than throw your hands up in the air?

Do you hide when someone rings your doorbell unexpectedly?

If this sounds like you, I have good news. You’re not anti-social. In fact, you just might be a genius.

According To An NCBI Study, People Who Are Highly Intelligent Tend To Associate With Fewer People And Seek Out Social Interaction Less Frequently. Interestingly, Their Life Satisfaction Increases When They Choose To Live By This Strategy.

According to lead researchers Satoshi Kanazawa and Norman Li, for those seeking happiness, the “hermit in the woods” strategy might be the way to go – especially for people who are highly intelligent. Through thorough research, these evolutionary psychologists were able to determine that human beings are happier living in less densely populated areas. They also found that happiness increases when a greater percentage of our social interactions are with our most dearly loved ones, as opposed to strangers, casual friends, or acquaintances.

Unsurprisingly, the study’s participants reported a greater level of happiness when they had more frequent social interaction – except for one group. For the most highly intelligent of people, this effect was not only diminished, but was actively reversed.

In Fact, As The Researchers Explained, “More Intelligent Individuals Experience Lower Life Satisfaction With More Frequent Socialization With Friends.”

Carol Graham, who studies the economics of happiness, examined this effect in a Washington Post article. “The findings suggest (and it is no surprise) that those with more intelligence and the capacity to use it are less likely to spend so much time socializing because they are focused on some other longer term objective.”

In other words, that nerd who says they have better things to do than hanging out with friends is actually on to something.

In interpreting the results of this study, evolutionary psychologists found great significance in this dynamic in relation to the “Savannah Theory.” This theory proposes that we find happiness in the same things that would have made our ancestors happy. On the savannah, population density would have been low, and interpersonal interaction would have been incredibly important for survival.

This study’s results, although ultimately in support of this theory, suggest that the most highly intelligent of human beings may be evolving past the need for very frequent social interaction. Instead, they are beginning to favor activities which promote our advancement in the modern world – which tend to be more intellectually and economically based. We need interaction less than our ancestors did, so the most highly evolved human beings have ceased to prioritize it.

So, The Next Time You Opt To Stay Home Instead Of Hitting The Club, Don’t Feel Weird About It. Feel Smart. You Are An Evolutionary Groundbreaker.

 

Was this helpful? I’d love to hear your thoughts on this subject. I love communicating and having some interaction with quality people, but as I’ve gotten older I need it much less and prefer to work more.

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day at 8am & 12pmEST.

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Here Are Some Great Reasons to Go on That Second Date! — Dear Sybersue: Dating Relationship Talk Show and Blog

 

Are you too picky that you sabotage your dating life?

via Here Are Some Great Reasons to Go on That Second Date! — Dear Sybersue: Dating Relationship Talk Show and Blog

Dina – 2011 to Present – In The Vault

“These clowns come in and are fans of Prova and act like crazy drunk, loud assholes. I fucking hate that. I literally want to call the cops and say these middle eastern looking guys were talking about taking flying lessons and not landing lessons and there was talk about the new Comcast tower being built.

They were that annoying.”

I crush it at the salon on a Saturday because I’ll be gone for 3 days. Dina, my friend and broker and I meet up at 1518 Bar & Grille. She’s 4’11” and adorable. She also has the metabolism of a bee. She loves Smores, fried chicken, Oreos, and ice cream.

Dina orders a lemon martini. I’m on my 2nd straight up with a twist and Asha the bartender hooks me up with house but it’s Ketel One.

She looks hot.  Boots, dark jeans, and custom leather jacket. Cute as hell. Dark curls tumble about her shoulders and of course that hot pouty mouth of hers.

I introduce her to  her to Prova the bartender. (See: Prova – 2015 to Present – Glow of the Sun) She looks amazing as always. Those dimples!

These clowns come in and are fans of Prova and act like crazy drunk, loud assholes. I fucking hate that. I literally want to call the cops and say these middle eastern looking guys were talking about taking flying lessons and not landing lessons and there was talk about the new Comcast tower being built.

They were that annoying.

Dina is amazing. She’s such a no bullshit girl who is so sure about herself. I love her plus she looks 18. I always knew she was too good for any life or job i saw her in. I’m also happy her husband is such a chill solid pup he doesn’t mind his hot wife hanging out with the Dark Lord and having drinks.

We need to get out of here. These Indian guys suck. So loud and annoying. I can’t think straight.

We close out and I let the staff know that there’s no hard feelings but that’s why we’re leaving. We need to talk and I need to hear her. I miss my friend.

We never go out on Saturday night. It’s all young drunk people around city. The women are extraordinary though.

We decide to check out Square 1682 but the staff sucks and we head to Sofitel. Liam is on and so is the waitress who likes to go topless when she gets drunk. Let’s just call her Tulip. I usually do a rock trivia thing with Liam but tonight I have a different one.

“You wake up and look out your front door and see the sun rise out of the Atlantic Ocean. Later that day, you walk out your back door and watch the sun set in the Pacific Ocean. Where is your house?”

Tulip looks great and I intro Dina to the crew. The bar is full so we sit and a quiet table in the lounge, which is glorious. Tulip brings a snack tray for Dina because as we all know, she loves to eat.

Dina’s happy and we order wine. She’s hungry, so more food is on the way. I got the drinks at 1518 but I know she’ll cover everything from here which is clutch.

We catch up on my life. Daughter Lorelei, the fitness center I should be opening in Rittenhouse in the next 60 days, and what’s happening with this blog, the book, and TV series we’re developing about it. Dina and her husband just settled on a house in Rittenhouse so I love that they’ll be in the neighborhood with us.

Liam is texting me solutions to my puzzle and they’re all wrong.

She says she has a strange story about a former colleague of mine. This person has since cut me off a couple of years ago for no apparent reason, but he likes to keep weak inferiors around him, and I hate his friends and wife anyway so its no loss to me. We could have been mighty but he never did what he was supposed to do with the business so now it’s just a trust fund baby’s way to play work. I loved the guy, but he has to make the juvenile choices he needs to make.

She tells me about this dinner she had with this other dude, I used to know that always had a thing for her. He’s harmless. We all still think he’s a virgin, so there’s that. He’s a really smart guy that is always super excited about everything that is before him, and it comes off as childish. I like the guy, but to me he’s just a bore.

If he would just get laid he’d probably chill out and get a different perspective on everything. I hate to say that, but that would probably fix his ass.

She goes to this dinner with this guy, as a friend or a wing woman or whatever with my former colleague and his horrible wife. I remember Everybody hated this guy’s wife years ago. She’s awful. She’s kind of hot. But only in the sense that if I were marooned on a desert island with her I would bang her for a few months but it would only be a matter of time before I became so annoyed with her that I would eventually kill her and eat her to survive just to not have to listen to her endless bullshit.

So they have their awkward dinner, little virgin guy gets an UBER with Dina back to Rittehouse. He gets in the car with her and says:

“So they are separated. She wanted it.”

I know this guy has a pre-nup so he’s well protected in regard to his daddy’s loot.

“Really?”

She thinks the wife is awful just like the rest of us.

“Yea, he went to an event and told her he could only get one ticket because they were really expensive, but he went with is new editor.”

“Oh wow. That’s a shame.”

“Yea, and his wife is living at the house, (because she doesn’t earn shit) and he said he’s living at a hotel but he’s really living with new editor girlfriend at an apartment somewhere.”

I am not shocked about this news because I knew he was miserable with that harpy years ago. She cheated on him in college and is crazy. She has destroyed property at the house, assaulted people at concerts, fights with him all the time, withholds sex all the time, has flushed his weed, and cigars, and is just an all around child who behaves as if she has fetal alcohol syndrome. Thank God she never wanted kids, because he dodged a huge child support bullet and should just cut that beast loose.

But he’s cut me off and I take that as a smite to me. I loved the guy and we were tight. I don’t know hat’s happened to him, but I’m sure he’s in a world of pain right now. I hope he gets through it okay, but I’m German and so is he, and if you read this dude, then schadenfreude is a bitch baby.

Karma can be a real fucker. You reap what you sow. You make bad life choices and that shit comes back on you like a hurricane. I just hope he can cash her out and flush her from his life and hopefully move on with the new mistress he’s fucking.

Dina and I eat and drink like Gods at Sofitel and I’m happy just to have her in my presence and hear her voice. I adore her. She’s so sound as a woman. I wish I could replicate her into five more to hang out with. Maybe a lawyer, and accountant Dina would be a start.

I go out for a smoke and she pays the bill. (Love her!) We both trust each other implicitly with all of our honesty and the relationship is wonderful. She takes care of my money and knows how to keep her mouth shut. Obviously we discuss everything that’s going on in our lives and it’s so intimate that I can’t talk about it here but maybe someday if this becomes a TV show our characters can talk about children, and marriage, but I can’t divulge our secrets here. Don’t worry’s it’s not that exciting, but this is a dating blog and not a forum for right and wrong.

We decide to head out and Dina needs Ben & Jerry’s. Of course I stand and put her leather jacket on her slight frame. You have to be a gentleman 100% of the time with everyone, guys.

We step out into the night. It’s stopped raining and the street is wet and the air is cool.

Happily there’s a store half way down the block from the hotel bar and it’s still open. I’m a wine, cocktail and carb guy. I’m just not really into sweets or dairy anymore. It doesn’t agree with my physiology. Middle age. But she’s 28 and looks 18 and loves sweets. She says we MUST stop there. I’ve walked by the place a hundred times and have had no desire to ever climb the steps and go in. (Even on National Ice Cream Day, where they give away free cones all day!)

We go in and this is alien to me. I never go into ice cream parlors. It’s clean and bright. I like it but prefer a dark bar.

The kid with the hat and dreds and tie-dye shirt is sweet and articulate. He knows his products. I always admire that. Dina knows this place so well that if she asks for endless samples of every crazy flavor combination they will let her put them in her mouth endlessly. I have this arrangement with Prova but she does it for me with craft beers so I get it. The ice cream flavors seem delicious, and she devours a few samples lovingly.  She encourages me to partake in the samples but I know what rich dairy will do to my colon so I only do one. It is some sort of chocolate, vanilla, cookies and nuts and crushed cone concoction. It is exquisite in my mouth.

I get it. But there are things in my life now that are far sweeter than any frozen treat can match.

Dina decides on some lethal combo and they put it all on a sugar cone. This is actually a really sweet moment in my mind. I adore Dina. I trust her with my money and my secrets. She’s one of my favorite people in my life.

I’m not getting an ice cream cone but this reminds me of some of the sweet romantic moments of my young life. Getting an ice cream cone with a young pretty girl on a Saturday night. She manages my financial portfolio and is a trusted friend but in this moment I am just happy to walk her home.

She’s loving her ice cream cone as we stroll through Rittenhouse with me walking on the inside so she doesn’t get splashed by a passing car.

I love this.

I like walking her home to her stoop and giving her a hug goodnight. We promise to keep in touch and have a lunch in our future. She unlocks her door and goes back to her husband and her little dog Lily.

I light a cig and walk home. The streets are wet and slick. They reflect the lights and sounds of the city. I’m happy after a long day at the salon, and a sweet night with a feiend.

I look forward to tomorrow.

 

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