A Watershed Moment

A Watershed Moment is a turning point, the exact moment that changes the direction of an activity or situation. A Watershed Moment is a dividing point, from which things will never be the same. It is considered momentous, though a Watershed Moment is often recognized in hindsight.

But not today.

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Happy Monday Everyone! Welcome to July 2020. 

It’s amazing to finally get a book you’ve working on published! Back on Valentine’s day of this year I was surprised when Phicklephilly the book, first appeared on Amazon. It was an exhilarating rush to finally have my work published.

 

When COVID-19 struck, it threw us all for a loop. But it opened up the opportunity to do the things we never had time to do. (Because we were all working!) I decided to compile and publish Crazy Dating Stories from my life. I put it out in three volumes on Amazon Kindle, and the Anthology on Kindle and paperback.

But as time went by, I felt the need to do something more. Something bigger. Something that wasn’t a non-fiction account of all of the crazy dates and relationships I’d been in.

I wanted to tell a story. Something that came from my mind and heart. The kind of book I would read.

…and Angel with a Broken Wing was born!

My publisher sent me author copies and I got them today! It’s funny… you write a book and get it published, and people buy it. They send you pictures of your book. It’s really nice to see that they bought it and that the book is selling.

But when you open the box that came in the mail, and you reach in and actually hold in your hands the thing that you made… The thing you created that wasn’t there before, it’s incredible. It’s no where near what I felt the day the nurse handed me my daughter for the first time… but it’s pretty darn good!

Thanks to everyone who supported me during this amazing journey. Thanks to my friends and family who patiently listened to me complain over and over about how much I hate editing. I’m so grateful to everybody at Amazon, AmazonKindle, WordPress, and GoDaddy. I couldn’t bring my stories to life without you guys!

I’m currently editing Phicklephilly 2, and I hope to have it out this Fall. I’m still debating whether I should publish Sun Stories: Tales from a Tanning Salon. There’s just so many moving parts to that book. If it does publish, it’ll be an enormous tome. I don’t know if I want that. I feel that some of those stories need to be told, but only time will tell. It would be a mad book because of all of the crazy stuff that happened there, but I just don’t know. It starts out innocent enough, but then becomes insane. I need to find its voice before I can even attempt to publish such an explosive expose’.

I’m also working on my second work of fiction. (Working title: Below the Wheel) It’s a hard boiled detective story that is nothing like Angel with a Broken Wing. I am in negotiations with a local artist for the cover. It needs a completely different look than Angel.

Once that’s completed, I’d like to write something heartfelt. I’ve always wanted to tell the quintessential summer at the seashore story. I’m not sure what that’s going to look like yet. I’m just going to let it flourish in my mind on it’s own over the next few months.

Anyway, I hope you’re all reading my Behind the Scenes mini series about Angel with a Broken Wing that publishes every Monday on Phicklephilly. It’s a revealing look into where all the ideas for the book came from.

The next book isn’t going to write itself, so I better get back at it. Before all of this all happened, I had short hair and no beard! Now, I’m approaching Big Lebowski territory! But based on my social media likes, the ladies dig it!

(Yea, that’s Jeff Buckley, Aerosmith and Farrah Fawcett behind me in my studio! Two dead, one band still alive and kicking. All beloved… and good inspiration!)

Thanks to everybody for getting us to 50,000 page views so far for 2020 on Phicklephilly! The blog wouldn’t exist without you! Also, a big thanks to all of the great companies that advertise on my site! I’ll keep generating solid content to support your brands. Kohls, Zipcar, Progressive, Geico, Duck duck go, and the rest!

Thanks for the revenue guys!

Alright! See you all tomorrow!

Charles

 

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

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ANGEL WITH A BROKEN WING: Inspiration and Behind the Scenes – Part 2

I decided to go back in my memory and try to remember all of the inspiring moments in my own life that helped bring this book to life. I published Part 1 last Monday, so you can check it out to gather more insight into the book. Anyway, here’s some more stuff…

Maria LaParilla: Maria as far as I can remember isn’t based on any one person. But if I’d have to say she’s like anyone I know, it would have to be my friend Maria. She has several posts written about her on Phicklephilly, and is actually the inspiration for me wanting to write this blog. But sadly, Maria LaParilla is a totally fictitious person, and all of the fun stuff that happens between Maria and Christian are completely made up.

Jeeves: He’s the English Chauffeur that drives the limo to enhance Christian’s date with Maria. His name is a poke at the internet search engine, Ask Jeeves that was on AOL in the 90’s. He’s completely made up. But I really like him. The classic, cool English driver. Maybe I’ll bring him back in the sequel, Angel Rising... (Did I just say that out loud?)

Answering Machines: Before the advent of cellular phones, everybody had an answering machine at their house. Unlike today, when everybody has access to everybody else instantly 24/7, that never existed back in the 90’s. If somebody called your home number, you had to wait until you got home that night to listen to the message they left you on a little cassette tape in a machine. It was a slower time back then, but kind of a pain. The only way anybody could reach you immediately, would have to be on your work phone, if they even had that number.

The Finance Company: Andy, Christian’s boss is based on a real guy who was my boss when I worked at a finance company in the early 90’s. He was exactly like the Andy in the book. Christian’s co-worker Paul was also a real guy I worked with in the Turnersville, NJ office. (And all of that horrible stuff really happened to the poor guy) The last I heard he was sober, and making music in Ohio. I hope he’s doing well. The story about the Banker Broker license really happened. The way it happened in the book is how it really happened to me. I did exactly what Christian did, so I loved writing that bit. Unlike Christian, I didn’t just quit with no other job lined up. I had already secured a better job as a branch manager at First Union Bank in Philadelphia for $10k more a year!

Brenda the Waitress: Brenda was a real girl who worked at Charlie Brown’s. She was my favorite waitress when I would go there with my friend. The real Brenda was exactly like the one in the book. Cute, sweet, and excellent hospitality. We loved her!

The Carousel and Sarah Turner: The Carousel is based on The Carnival Book store in Bellmawr, New Jersey. I remember I dated a girl who worked there back in the early 2000’s. I was on a rebound from a toxic relationship, and rebound girl was 20 years my junior. She was also toxic but I kept her at a distance. I remember she used to tell me all of these wild stories about working in that hell hole. Little did I know that it would be great fodder for this book years later. Is Sarah Turner based on her? Not at all. Sarah is just a character that was created for the story.

Here’s some pics I found online:

I love the scene when Christian first encounters Karl Itzky in that parking lot on that fateful rainy night!

LA stories about Celebrities: The tales Christian shares at Honest Files about his encounters with famous people in Los Angeles in the early 80’s are all mine. It’s all true, because it happened to me when I lived and worked in Santa Monica from 1982-1984.

Christian’s Family: The family Christian describes when he’s telling Jill about his life, is my life. I have 3 sisters and I just changed the names and let him describe them to her. But that’s all me.

Jill Adams: Jill is based on another girl I met at Gloucester County College back in the 90’s. We were both taking a psychology course. She was an attractive 22 year old who was engaged to be married. I developed a crush on her, and we ended up at Charlie Brown’s one night. After several drinks we closed the evening by making out in her car. (That’s were the mint game came from.) That’s all that happened that night, and I didn’t see her again. I sort of carried the torch for her for five years after that.

I was working as a manager at Commerce Bank back then and we reconnected when she called the branch. After 5 years of marriage, she was getting divorced from her husband. But, she had two young sons. I was already divorced by 2001, and we started dating. I ended up moving her and her kids into my house in Woodbury. What I didn’t know is that the real Jill had severe bi-polar disorder. If you know anything about that mental disorder, it’s only good in one room of the house, and it’s not the kitchen. Being with Jill was probably some of the best sex I’ve ever had, and I have the video to prove it.

I showered her with gifts, clothes and jewelry. I even sold my Woodbury house because she didn’t want to live in the house my ex-wife and I had bought together. Jill was crazy as a shit house rat. I paid her credit cards, bought her a GMC Yukon Denali, and had a house built in a brand new development in West Deptford, NJ. Jill was unable to hold a job and actually attempted suicide one afternoon while her sons were down for their nap.

After 3 months in the new house she started cheating on me with some scumbag she met at the local gym. Jill couldn’t hold down a job because of her mental illness, so she had a lot of free time on her hands. Idle hands…

I told her if she didn’t want to be with me she was free to go. She moved out and lived somewhere for a short period of time before moving back in with her father and his second wife. She ended up giving custody of her sons over to her ex-husband, and ran around with the scumbag guy for awhile I’m assuming.  Last I heard she had married another guy, who had two kids of his own, and I think she may have had a daughter with him. The real Jill turned out to be a terrible, selfish, wicked person. Mental illness, especially bi-polar disorder is an insidious monster.

I should write about the whole sad saga of my brief life with the real Jill, but this blog has been about my life here in Philly, not Dirty Jersey.  I may tell the story at some point but it’s a dark, shameful part of my past and I kind of want it to stay there.

I’ve been kicking around the idea of a sequel to Angel with a Broken Wing. I was thinking about calling it, Angel Rising, and having Jill in the story mirror the real Jill. Of course my man Christian would have to divorce her, or maybe I just have her killed off.

I ran the idea by my daughter. She said, kill the bitch.

Thoughts, dear readers?

 

More to come next Monday!

 

You can buy Angel with a Broken Wing right here:

https://www.amazon.com/s?k=charles+wiedenmann&ref=nb_sb_noss_2

 

 

 

 

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

Buy my new book, Angel with a Broken Wing on Amazon!

Listen to the Phicklephilly podcast LIVE on Spotify!

Instagram: @phicklephilly    Facebook: phicklephilly    Twitter: @phicklephilly

When Someone Isn’t Over Their Ex, They’ll Probably Show These 5 Behaviors

I used to know someone who couldn’t let go… he’s probably still stuck.

Imagine this all-too-real scenario for a minute: You’ve been dating someone for a few weeks and everything’s going well. You really like them and think this could lead to a great relationship. The downside? They bring up their ex’s name way too often, or you catch them creeping on their social media. It’s uncomfortable, and you aren’t sure what to do about it. When someone isn’t over their ex, you’ll probably be able to pick up on certain behaviors that’ll feel like dead giveaways. Knowing what to look out for might be able to help you decide whether or not this is a topic you want to bring up.

First of all, does it really matter if your partner isn’t over their ex before they start dating you? Sex and intimacy coach Irene Fehr tells Elite Daily that it does. “From the wondering, dreaming, thinking about ‘what ifs’ or ‘what should have beens’ with an ex, still being connected with them takes emotional energy — and that is energy that cannot go to a current partner.”

She also points out the importance of emotional availability, saying, “if you want to be involved fully with this person, it’s important that they are available to be emotionally involved and in love with you. Still being involved or hung up with an ex creates a dynamic where there is a ‘third,’ which can be defined as anyone or anything that intrudes on the couple, or makes it difficult to connect deeply and get to know each other.”

If you notice any of the following signs in your bae’s behavior, it might be because they’re still healing from their last breakup and probably aren’t ready to move on.

1. It’s clear they can’t let things go.

Unhappy young couple of friends, teenagers, students at city street, relationship difficulties concept

Shutterstock

If someone isn’t over their ex, then they might still be pretty upset about the way things ended. “They still complain about their ex and what they did or didn’t do, and that carries charge: bitterness, resentment, anger or sadness,” Fehr explains. “They are stuck wishing that things were different and they can’t let it go.”

When the person you’re seeing can’t make like Elsa and just let it go, they probably aren’t over their ex, which means it might be time to have a conversation.

2. They’re still very good friends with a recent ex.

Everyone has a different opinion about whether or not staying friends with an ex is a good idea. To each their own, but according to Fehr, someone who maintains regular contact with an ex might be doing so because they’re not ready to fully part ways. “They still stay in touch with the ex, in person or via social media, and discuss what they’re doing in and with their lives,” she says. “They are a presence in their mind and thoughts.”

That’s not to say that someone who’s still friends with an ex will never be able to give you the kind of relationship you deserve. That’s very much not the case. You can absolutely still be friends with an ex and be emotionally available to have a relationship with someone else. Nevertheless, you will know when that relationship is a little too close for comfort, especially if the breakup is still very fresh and the exes are regularly communicating and meeting up without you.

3. They constantly check their ex’s social media accounts.

If your eyes have ever wandered onto your bae’s phone screen, only to find that they’re scrolling through their ex’s Insta, they might still be hung up, behavioral scientist and clinician Clarissa Silva, tells Elite Daily. In fact, stalking an ex on social media at any point isn’t particularly healthy. “This only stagnates their growth because it occupies their brain with thoughts about their exes’ activities and whereabouts.”

4. Their memories haunt them.

Shot of sad young woman thinking about her problems while sitting next to the river in the city.

Shutterstock

This one might be hard to pick up on if you’ve only recently started dating this person, but if they’re not over their ex, they might become distracted by thoughts of them. “Especially if someone recently ended a relationship, the person might be constantly reminded of good times together — or bad,” Fehr says. “It might feel like everything is a trigger to some memory. They might bring it up or you might feel them drifting away and getting lost in the memory.” Sometimes you only have your intuition to go on, but if you notice that they’re becoming more distant, they could be thinking about their ex.

5. They regularly bring their ex up in casual conversations.

Last, but certainly not least, someone who doesn’t stop talking about their ex probably isn’t over them. “Their number one topic is their ex,” Silva explains. “When someone is struggling to get over an ex, they often reminisce about the relationship.” But, there is a difference between reminiscing fondly and reminiscing obsessively to the point where everyone needs to know every detail about their former relationship. That is never fun to sit through.

Host of the breakup BOOST podcast, Trina Leckie agrees, telling Elite Daily that someone isn’t over their ex “if they talk about their ex often, bring up their ex in conversation, or get emotional about their ex.” Additionally, if they compare you to their ex — whether it be bedroom tactics, hobbies, or life details (i.e: “Oh! My ex went to that college too,” or “My ex used to love it when I did [insert sexual act] to them.”) — they probably aren’t over it, Leckie adds.

If you’ve come to the conclusion that person you’re dating isn’t over the ex, Leckie recommends taking a step back, and “let them know that you aren’t interested in dating someone who hasn’t moved on from their past relationship. Wish them well and look to meet others who are in the right headspace and looking for the same things you are.”

You don’t necessarily have to break things off with someone if they aren’t over their ex, but it’s important to at least talk about it. “Remind them that when they do [bring up their ex], they are only extracting the moments of the relationship they want to remember that where about companionship,” Silva advises. “This is also not allowing them to form a relationship with anyone new.”

It’s not easy to get over an ex, but if someone hasn’t moved on from their previous relationship, and wants to start something new with you, it might be a good idea to talk things out first. After all, you deserve to be with someone who is as invested in you as you are in them, and that can’t happen if they’re still thinking about their ex all the time.

 

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

Buy 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

ANGEL WITH A BROKEN WING: Inspiration and Behind the Scenes – Part 1

The truth behind the story!

This is a 4 part mini series I wrote over the weekend as a companion to my recently published book. It will run over the next 4 weeks, every Monday morning at 8am!

Thank you!

Angel with a Broken Wing is my first work of fiction. It’s got all of my favorite elements in it. But where do these ideas come from? Well, I’m going to tell you.

I’m going to think back and try to remember some of the inspiration for this story.

I am obviously Christian Blackmore. Not anymore, but I was back in the 90’s. I was miserable in my marriage and my job, and I wished  I could just run away from the life I had created. I assembled his name from the word, Christian. Thinking he was a good Christian. He was a good man despite his shortcomings. Blackmore comes from the darkness that lies within him. More Blackness. (As a musician, I always liked the name of Deep Purple and Rainbow founder, Ritchie Blackmore, so there’s also that.)

The Cover: I was an art major all through school. When I think about that now, it feels like a million miles away. I liked comic books growing up, and my first exposure to art was in comics. I always made art throughout my childhood, so art class was a natural progression for me in school. It was the only class that was effortless.

I loved to work in pen and ink. I liked its stark simplicity. I have several works from high school that I still retain in my collection. This one, The Angel is my favorite.

It was an incredibly cold day in February of 1980. I was in my double period, art major class. There were only two of us in the class that were any good. Me and Bill Polini.

I looked out the window as the snow came flying. I took pen in hand, and imagined a beautiful girl. In a warm place. She’s with me. We’re maybe riding horses…or camels. She turns to look at me, and the reflection of the oasis behind me reflects in her sunglasses. I long to kiss her.

“Yea. I should try to draw that.”

Uncle John: I had an uncle John on my mother’s side of the family. I share many of the same characteristics of my mom’s side of the family more than my dad. My mother had four brothers; Roland, Robert, Norman, and John. All of her brothers kept their hair and all died in their late 70’s and 80’s so maybe if my liver holds up, I’ll meet the same fate. John never left me any inheritance, but my uncle Rob left all of us kids some loot and it was substantial. He lived in Florida.

The Pinto: My grandmother, (My dad’s mom) We called her Grammy. I loved her. When everybody thought I was a piece of garbage in my early teens, she was the only one that had faith in me. So She will always have a special place in my heart. She was a cool lady, who liked a cold glass of beer and some good neighborhood gossip. Just an adorable lady. When she died, the last car she owned was a gold Ford Pinto. That car is my last memory of her. So I used it in the story. The car’s fate is based on stories I heard back in the 70’s about an engineering flaw in the vehicle.

Woodbury, New Jersey: I lived in Woodbury from 1992 to 2001. My wife and I owned a house on Barber Street. I modeled Christian Blackmore’s residence after my own house there. So when I wrote about him in his house in Woodbury, I could picture my own life there.

The Phoenix: I remember first hearing about the story of the Phoenix on an old record album. It was a collection of stories about superheroes. It was like an old radio show type collection of plays on one LP. I remember hearing about the Phoenix in one of those stories, probably back as far as 1973. When one of the characters describes the Phoenix, it is a verbatim rendition of what I heard on that record, nearly 50 years ago. I always felt like I could relate to the Phoenix in my own life. I always felt that no matter how many times I got destroyed in my life, I always came back better than what I was before. I think that’s why I have the characters make a stop over in Phoenix, Arizona on their journey to LA. There are some transforming moments for a few of them in that chapter.

Gloucester County College: When I was married back in the 90’s my then wife came from a very collegiate family. I never went to college, but had several college credits from the American Institute of Banking through courses I had taken through the bank I worked for. My wife thought I should go back to college at night and take courses to get my college degree. So I did. I took those classes at night after work, at Gloucester County Community College. I don’t feel that it was a waste of time, because it led to some interesting things. I’ll be getting to them shortly.

The Gun: Everything you read in Angel about the Bulldog .44 revolver is true. I never owned a gun, and like Christian Blackmore, I hate guns. But all of the info about that weapon is from real events. The story Christian tells Sheryl about the girl at the shore is all true. That happened to me in the summer of 1977. Funny thing is, I recently reconnected with that girl from New York on Facebook. (At 57, she’s still hot!) Oh, one last thing, I had to make a slight change in the action sequence involving that gun. During the final edits of the book I discovered that the bulldog .44 only holds 5, not 6 bullets like most revolvers! I guess because those bullets are so big!

Sheryl Stanton: Sheryl was inspired by a girl I met in one of the banking courses I took at Gloucester County College. I pretty much describe Sheryl as how this girl was in real life. We had a good friendship for a brief period and even had some romantic dalliances. She did break it off with me when she moved to California for a period of time. The real Sheryl never worked in a mental health facility. That’s completely made up for the story.

Karl Itzky: The first kid I met when I went to Frankford High School in 1978, was a guy named Karl Itzky. He was the only person I knew other than my older sister. I just liked his name. He is nothing like the Karl Itzky in the book. He was a nice guy, who I sadly lost touch with when I moved up the social ladder in high school.

Honest Files: The name of the bar/restaurant where Christian and Sheryl hang out is taken from a song by the band, Urge Overkill. There are many references in the book about music I was listening to back in the 90’s where this story takes place. It’s from their album, Exit the Dragon. Here are some of the lyrics from the song:

Hey, hey I’m dead on arrival
Hey, hey I’m distant
Crawling right back
Yes, I’m crawling right back
‘Cause I’m honesty, don’t break my heart
Honesty won’t break it
Honesty won’t break you heart
Honest it won’t
It won’t, it won’t, it won’t, it won’t, it won’t…

I thought it was a cool song, and that bar is where I hung out with the real Sheryl back then. It’s where we would spill our guts to each other about everything in our lives. I used to say we were opening the ‘Honesty Files’ about what we were experiencing at that time.

The real place is exactly the way I describe it in the book. The animal trophies on the walls, all of the real bookcases all around the room, and the fireplace. We spent many a night there pounding martinis and smoking tons of cigarettes. (Yea, you could smoke in restaurants and bars back then!) It was a welcome repose from our chaotic lives.

Exterior - Picture of Charlie Brown's Steakhouse, Woodbury ...

Here’s the real Honesty Files… It’s a place called Charlie Brown’s at 111 Broad Street, in Woodbury, NJ

 

More next week!

 

You can buy Angel with a Broken Wing on kindle and paperback right here:

 

https://www.amazon.com/s?k=charles+wiedenmann&ref=nb_sb_noss_2

 

 

 

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

Buy my new book, Angel with a Broken Wing on Amazon!

Listen to the Phicklephilly podcast LIVE on Spotify!

Instagram: @phicklephilly    Facebook: phicklephilly    Twitter: @phicklephilly

ANGEL WITH A BROKEN WING is Now For Sale on Amazon! (kindle and paperback)

PUBLISHED!

 

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

 

The day is finally here, and I couldn’t be happier! This has been a long time coming and a labor of love. I’ve been working day and night to get this baby written, and I think it’s my finest work yet! I hope you enjoy it!

 

I wanted to create something new. Not a non-fiction, compilation of stories from my blog. Something new. A story. A fable. A love story that included all of the elements of all the films I liked. A thriller, road movie, romance, mystery, an action yarn, that would be full of twists and turns.

The world had gone a bit mad, and I wanted to create a world I could control. I wanted it to take place in a time before there were smart phones or social media. A story about a boy and a girl trying to fall in love, during extraordinary circumstances. Let’s put a fancy car in there. Have them drive across the country on a road trip. Let’s throw a bad guy in there. That’ll keep them on edge. Let’s make it a mystery too. Let’s ‘David Lynch’ it up a bit with some interesting, unique characters. Let’s make them all flawed in some way. They all have the potential to be good, but they’re all struggling with themselves. They all want something, but they don’t know the right way to get it. A collection of misfits all trying to find themselves. All broken in some way. They want to fly, but their wings are broken, so they choose to run.

What if you could just run away from your current life?

Christian Blackmore works as a manager at a local finance company in New Jersey. He’s burned out from all the bad loans, and making collection calls every night. He spends his days laboring at a job he hates, and his evenings drinking at a local bar with his best friend. 

When his favorite uncle dies, and leaves him a unique inheritance, he begins to question the path he’s taken in life.

He decides to take a road trip across the country with a woman he just met. She’s a mysterious beauty, who may hold a dark secret. 

What begins as a romantic journey, becomes a nightmare, when he realizes he’s being followed by an elusive stranger. What does he want? Is it Christian, the girl, or something far more sinister?

Angel with a Broken Wing, takes you on a terrifying, coast to coast thrill ride across America. Can one man fall in love, and stay one step ahead in a cat and mouse game with a killer?

You can check it out here:

 

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

 

I want to first thank my daughter. Thank you for coming into my life. You are my inspiration. I love you! I can always come to you with an idea and you make it perfect.

Scott Macintosh. You’re my best friend. You’ve been with me since the beginning. Thank you for staying on the ship, even when it was sinking. 

Will Ball. Thank you for your friendship, the films, the laughs, and of course, the cocktails. I’m honored to have you in my life as a friend. 

A.M. Homes. Thank you for answering my letter with a personal note so many years ago. I was so inspired by your words, it gave me the courage to write my story the way I wanted to tell it, without fear.

Thanks to the amazing team at Amazon Kindle. Without you, I’d be lost in a sea of technology. I can write the words, but you guys help me turn them into books.

Thanks to everyone at Amazon. I became a member over 20 years ago when you were just a giant bookstore. After crawling on my hands and knees to agents and publishing houses for years, Amazon finally gave me the biggest platform on Earth to bring my literary work to the world!

A special thanks to everyone at WordPress. Without you, I couldn’t publish Phicklephilly everyday for the last four years! Now we’re a dot com and I’ve monetized the site with ads! You gave me a home to bring my work to everyone! Thank you!

Thanks to all the folks over at GoDaddy. You made the transition from just another blogger, to a dotcom look easy. Thanks for always being there when I needed you. You’re the best!

Thank you, dear readers, and subscribers for all of your support over the years I’ve been writing this little blog. I appreciate you all, and try to respond to all of your comments. I love your comments!

Please buy my new book. I assure you, you won’t be disappointed. It’s quite a ride!

This is a great book to read at the beach this summer!

 

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

 

 

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

Buy my new book, Angel with a Broken Wing on Amazon!

Listen to the Phicklephilly podcast LIVE on Spotify!

Instagram: @phicklephilly    Facebook: phicklephilly    Twitter: @phicklephilly

 

 

HAPPY FIRST DAY OF SUMMER, EVERYONE…EVERYWHERE!!!

 

Zoolon Forever!

Tales of Rock: All The Cultural References In The Song ‘American Pie,’ Explained

I love writing this column every Sunday! Enjoy!

Eight minutes long, starting with “A long, long time ago,” Don McLean’s “American Pie” is a slice of cultural history. Since the song’s release, fans have been obsessed with answering one question: what is “American Pie” about?

“That song didn’t just happen,” McLean said of his 1971 hit, which was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame and named a Song of the Century by the Recording Industry Association of America. The classic folk-rock anthem, known for its expansive lyrics, is filled with cultural references related to American life in the 1950s and 1960s.

“I saw the implication of America going bye-bye, since by 1971 we were a horribly divided country with tremendous anger being directed at the government over… Vietnam,” McLean said in Alan Howard’s book The Don McLean Story, hinting at the song’s larger meaning: the disintegration of the American ideal McLean romanticized in his youth.

McLean’s ambiguous writing style lends itself to all types of interpretation, and that is how he wanted it. “People ask me if I left the lyrics open to ambiguity. Of course I did,” he said. “I wanted to make a whole series of complex statements. The lyrics had to do with the state of society at the time.”

McLean officially verified only one reference in the song: that Buddy Holly was a key influence in his life. As McLean put it, “I can say that Buddy was a huge part of my childhood dream. Long before I decided how I would use music or what kind of artist I would be, Buddy was there.”

Fans have pulled apart and analyzed the rest of the “American Pie” lyrics and references through context clues, research, and finding historical parallels to the decades that inspired the creation of McLean’s ballad.

‘Bye, Bye Miss American Pie’

Some fans believe the “American Pie” in the famous first line of McLean’s chorus refers to the name of the plane Buddy Holly perished on, but according to the federal Civil Aeronautics Board incident report about the aircraft’s demise, the plane didn’t have a name.

Jim Fann, creator of the Understanding American Pie website, argues the line has a potential two-fold meaning: a nod to the phrase “as American as apple pie” and an allusion to the Miss America beauty queen. The phrase “evokes a simpler time in American life when these icons held more meaning,” Fann said.

‘Drove My Chevy To The Levee But The Levee Was Dry’

McLean imbues his all-American song with all-American iconography, like the Chevy automobile or truck. The dried levee (which rhymes with Chevy) adds a sense of barrenness to the current landscape in the song.

Also, an advertisement for Chevrolet in 1953 featured a jingle sung by Dinah Shore that includes a reference to a levee.

‘Singin’ This’ll Be The Day’

This line likely refers to Buddy Holly’s song “That’ll Be the Day.”

Holly, along with singers the Big Bopper and Ritchie Valens, and pilot Roger Peterson, perished in a plane incident February 3, 1959. Their small aircraft went down on a snowy late night after a concert in Clear Lake, IA.

‘A Long, Long Time Ago’

McLean released the song in 1971, but “American Pie” focuses on the 1950s, thus the exposition.

‘But February Made Me Shiver’

This is the first reference in “American Pie” (before the chorus) to Buddy Holly’s demise on February 3, 1959. He hopped on a plane after playing a show in Iowa, and never made it to his next stop: Minnesota. Instead, the plane’s remains were found in an Iowa cornfield, where all the passengers, including the pilot, perished.

It’s believed the plane flew into a blizzard and the inexperienced pilot lost control.

‘With Every Paper I’d Deliver / Bad News On The Doorstep / I Couldn’t Take One More Step’

McLean apparently worked as a newspaper delivery boy. And on February 3, 1959, the “bad news” was Buddy Holly’s demise, on the cover of every paper (the afternoon version) that McLean distributed.

‘When I Read About His Widowed Bride’

Buddy Holly was married to his young wife, Maria Elena Santiago-Holly, for only six months when he perished.

His widowed, pregnant new bride was so traumatized by the news of his demise that she had a miscarriage.

 

‘The Day The Music Died’

Buddy Holly was not the only musician who perished in the plane incident. He was on a 24-day, 24-city tour with the Big Bopper and Ritchie Valens. The Big Bopper was known for his song “Chantilly Lace,” and Valens for “La Bamba.”

The loss of all three rock musicians in the same incident was seen as a tragedy, and in McLean’s mind, marked the end of a musical era that would never be reclaimed.

‘Did You Write The Book Of Love?’

“The Book of Love” is a famous doo-wop song by The Monotones, a group from Newark, NJ. The song was released in 1958, topping pop and R&B charts. It must have left an impression on young McLean. As the lyrics to the song go:

I wonder, wonder who, mmbadoo-ooh, who
Who wrote the book of love

The track actually made it to Woodstock 1969, where it was covered by Sha Na Na.

‘If The Bible Tells You So?’

“The Bible Tells Me So” was a gospel pop adaptation of the Sunday school song “Jesus Loves Me” written by Dale Evans in 1955 and recorded by a handful of singers the same year.

Versions from Nick Noble and Don Cornell were especially popular, soaring high on Billboard charts.

‘You Both Kicked Off Your Shoes’

This is likely a reference to sock hops, beloved teenage dance parties in the ’40s and ’50s that involved playing popular music in gymnasiums or community halls. Sock hops coincided with the rise of rock ‘n’ roll as the ’50s progressed.

Participants were told to take their shoes off to protect the varnish on dance floors.

‘With A Pink Carnation And A Pickup Truck’

In 1957, Marty Robbins released the heartbreak song “A White Sport Coat (And a Pink Carnation)” about a young man “all dressed up for the dance” and “all alone in romance.”

‘And Moss Grows Fat On A Rolling Stone’

A year after Bob Dylan released “Like a Rolling Stone” in 1965, he was involved in a strange motorcycle incident that made him lie low for a year or two at the height of his career. He’d just transformed himself from a folk singer to an electric guitar-playing rock musician, which caused a lot of controversy within the American music scene.

Some fans believe McLean’s intention with this line in “American Pie” is to highlight the evolution of music between the ’50s and early ’70s while also pushing the action of the song into the ’60s.

‘When The Jester Sang For The King And Queen’

According to one fan theory, Bob Dylan is the jester, Pete Seeger is the king, and Joan Baez is the queen. All three were influential and politically motivated folk singers in early ’60s, and it’s not a stretch to suggest their music influenced McLean’s own folksy sound. Dylan, Seeger, and Baez were all on stage together at the Newport Folk Festival in 1963, where they sang Dylan’s “Blowin’ in the Wind” in unison.

Another theory is that the king and queen refer to President John F. Kennedy and first lady Jackie Kennedy.

‘In A Coat He Borrowed From James Dean’

This line could be another reference to Bob Dylan.

On the cover of his 1963 album The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan, Dylan wears a red windbreaker similar to the one worn by James Dean in the film Rebel Without a Cause.

‘And While The King Was Looking Down’

If the king is Pete Seeger, the godfather of folk, this could be a reference to him looking down upon the way Bob Dylan experimented with music in the 1960s.

‘The Jester Stole His Thorny Crown’

Bob Dylan the jester became the king, taking the crown when he won hearts with his brand of folksy rock ‘n’ roll.

Who did he take the crown from? Some people believe it’s Elvis, the “King of Rock ‘n’ Roll.” Others stick with Pete Seeger.

‘The Courtroom Was Adjourned / No Verdict Was Returned’

Returning to the JFK theory, after he was slain in 1963 , the man accused of the slaying, Lee Harvey Oswald, was himself slain.

Therefore, “no verdict was returned” because no trial actually occurred.

‘And While Lennon Read A Book On Marx’

While some fans think McLean is singing about Communist revolutionary Vladimir Lenin, the more popular theory is that he’s singing about the Beatles becoming more political with their music as tensions soared in the ’60s. The Beatles, adored by American youth, were deemed inappropriate by older generations who thought their music was too rowdy.

As their sound evolved, the Beatles released songs like “Revolution” in 1968, whose message is in line with the Communist philosophies of German writer Karl Marx, known for The Communist Manifesto.

’The Quartet Practiced In The Park’

The quartet is likely the Beatles: Paul McCartney, John Lennon, George Harrison, and Ringo Starr.

‘And We Sang Dirges In The Dark’

A dirge is a funereal song of mourning, and there were plenty of lives to mourn in the ’60s: President John F. KennedyMartin Luther King Jr., and Robert F. Kennedy among them.

The line could also refer to the Vietnam conflict; many drafted service members sent overseas never made it back home.

‘Helter Skelter In A Summer Swelter’

“Helter Skelter” is a song the Beatles released in 1968, a year of political and social turmoil in the United States.

The next August, “in a summer swelter,” followers of Charles Manson brutally slayed five people, including the actress Sharon Tate, who was eight months pregnant at the time.

‘The Birds Flew Off From A Fallout Shelter’

Some fans speculate this is an allusion to the ’60s rock band The Byrds. A fallout shelter is a euphemism for a treatment center, which one of the band members checked into after being caught with illicit substances.

‘Eight Miles High And Falling Fast’

Eight Miles High is the title of a 1966 album by The Byrds, considered one of the first real trippy records.

The groundbreaking sound of the album was influenced by plenty of experimentation with illicit substances, particularly acid.

‘It Landed Foul On The Grass’

Grass. Herb. Dope. Pot. Doobie. All of these slang words refer to one thing, a certain illicit (and some consider foul-smelling) substance favored in the ’60s counterculture on display in “American Pie”: weed.

‘With The Jester On The Sidelines In A Cast’

Fans believe this is another homage to Bob Dylan’s 1966 motorcycle incident.

‘While Sergeants Played A Marching Tune’

The Beatles released Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band in 1967, and this is likely an allusion to that significant album.

With this release, the Beatles amped up their innovative approach to rock music, including sitars and sound collages.

‘ ‘Cause The Players Tried To Take The Field / The Marching Band Refused To Yield’

Fans see this as a remark about the protest movement that seemed to peak in the late ’60s and early ’70s, from Chicago to Kent State.

Young people demonstrated en masse against prejudice, military conflicts, and economic injustice.

‘Oh, And There We Were, All In One Place’

McLean could be making a statement about the unifying power of the Woodstock 1969 festival in Bethel, NY, which brought together more than 400,000 people in one weekend.

Many of the most well-known rock musicians of the time performed, including Janis Joplin and Jimi Hendrix. The festival is viewed as the height of American hippie culture.

‘Jack Be Nimble, Jack Be Quick / Jack Flash Sat On A Candlestick’

This line could be a mash-up between the “Jack Be Nimble” nursery rhyme and the 1969 song “Jumpin’ Jack Flash” by the Rolling Stones, released on their album Live’r Than You’ll Ever Be.

Fans think this is an insult to the Stones for not coming up with a good comeback to the Beatles’ album Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. According to their theory, “Jack” is Mick Jagger.

‘Cause Fire Is The Devil’s Only Friend’

According to one theory, the “Devil” could be Rolling Stones frontman Mick Jagger, representing rebellion and estrangement, and the pull away from a more innocent time perceived earlier in music and the world.

‘No Angel Born In Hell / Could Break That Satan’s Spell’

“No angel born in Hell” could refer to the Hells Angels Motorcycle Club, which instigated a riot at the 1969 Altamont Free Concert in California.

The Hells Angels agreed to provide security during a performance by the Rolling Stones, and an 18-year-old black man perished at the hands of a member of the motorcycle group. The events of the day are considered by some to be the day the “free love” movement ended.

‘I Met A Girl Who Sang The Blues’

The “girl” could be Janis Joplin, the rock singer with a singular bluesy voice who perished from taking illicit substances in 1970.

Her hits “Piece of My Heart” and “Me and Bobby McGee” were considered anthems for the hippie generation.

‘I Went Down To The Sacred Store / Where I’d Heard The Music Years Before / But The Man There Said The Music Wouldn’t Play’

McLean is possibly bemoaning the loss of interest in ’50s music at record stores.

When he released the song in 1971, perhaps he was suggesting no one cared about music from this bygone era anymore.

‘And In The Streets The Children Screamed’

This line could be an allusion to all the turmoil that occurred in the years leading up to the song’s creation.

Thousands of young people across the country were involved in various protest movements, which led to confrontations with law enforcement or other groups.

‘And The Three Men I Admire Most / The Father, Son, And The Holy Ghost’

McLean was apparently raised Catholic, so bringing religion in at the end of the song makes sense.

The sacred holy trinity, however, catches “the last train for the coast,” likely a sign McLean believes America lost its moral foundation in 1959.

 

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

Buy my new book, Angel with a Broken Wing on June 20th, on Amazon!

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Michelle – Chapter 21 – Ghosted

“I’m just a soul whose intentions are good. Oh Lord, please don’t let me be misunderstood.”

This post was written in 2019. Due to scheduling restraints of more relevant content, it’s been delayed and is being published now.

If you’ve been reading this blog you’ll have read the Michelle story. Although not the inspiration for this blog like Maria, it’s one of the cornerstones of this publication. Michelle is one of the most important people I’ve ever met. The great thing is, you can simply type in her name in the search bar and read the whole story of our relationship. (Or buy my book, Phicklephilly, on Amazon!)

Sadly, she and I had always wanted to write about our legacy in this great city of Philadelphia, but never did. We collected bullet points and events on paper ,but like most people in love, we were having too much fun to record anything we did.

I did my best here to piece together out greatest hits on phicklephilly. I know Michelle had some fear about what I would publish on this blog because of her present situation.

Read Michelle before you read this piece because it’ll help you understand the full scope of what this relationship was.

Michelle and I had a very special relationship. It was more unique than any I had ever known, and I’m sure I will not experience it again. I’m lucky to have had my time with her. I always said; “You’re the nicest, pretty girl I ever met.” Because beautiful women don’t need to be nice. They just need to show up.

But Michelle always was.

I was blessed to have her as my girl. I was a 40 something loser from a failed marriage and working in New York in the world of finance. I got laid off with a team of other talented guys and needed a job. I ran out of options in NYC and turned to Philly. (The city I’m from) By some miracle, I landed a job in advertising at the news of record for Philadelphia.

Michelle worked in billing. I couldn’t imagine why such a beautiful women ended up in such a shitty department. But she eventually wanted to get into sales, and since my manager was secretly in love with her, he acquired her. Much to my delight. I was just happy to be near her and work with her. Incredibly pretty, but so nice. A rare combination.

We became friends.

Read Michelle. Then you’ll know what we were to each other.

Michelle kept in touch with me long after our breakup. One of the most extraordinary aspects of or relationship, is that we were able to stay best friends after our break up.

It was a classic phicklephilly breakup. “You aren’t going to marry me and give me kids, so goodbye.”

I get it.

I’m not doing that ever again. No bitterness, just can’t risk that again.

Michelle and I have been friends, longer than we’ve been lovers. (Which has so much deeper value)  I’ve never experienced that with anyone I’ve ever known. That seems odd to me, but I simply accepted that miracle for what it was.

That went on for years.

After all of that…

She sold all of her stuff, quit her job, and flew to California and went on to marry her high school sweetheart. She knew we didn’t work, and was done with dating all of the idiots out in the world so she retreated to the known. The guy from high school who she originally loved. They were both out of options so they decided to settle.

“He became the man I hoped he’d be” she said.

She settled for the American Dream.

The American Dream. I have lived that and I have nothing but the taste of ashes in my mouth for that life.

Michelle has been sold a bill of goods, that told her she needs to find a safe man by her 30’s, and get married and have kids. That is a sour lie told to every woman in this country, from the time they hit puberty. Maybe even before that. She’s a kid born out-of-wedlock. Adopted by assholes who have no idea who they were. They don’t even know who they are or why they want a kid, but they can afford you, so you get rescued. But from what? Death, then into the frying pan of these two idiots?

It happened.

But you’re smart and oh, so beautiful. Beauty goes so far in this world.

I only ever saw your kindness and sweetness and till this day I am astounded by you.

When everything in your life no longer makes sense you go for the American Dream.

(Never do this fair readers)

Marriage and settling on a guy that is reasonably handsome and can hold a job and is in the range to give you kids. You hated taking care of your cat, why in the fuck would you ever want to have kids? Kids are a fortune (I have the receipts. My beloved Lorelei cost me over $170,000)

He takes her camping, hiking, and hang gliding… Kill me now. Come on….She likes hanging out, and sipping chardonnay, and smoking cigs with interesting people.

Or does she? Maybe she’s ready to adapt to the safe option.

I know all of the above gets boring, and I don’t even do that anymore, but has she simply settled for mediocrity? But maybe by doing all of those mundane things they’ve saved her from a rich, exciting life, and she’s healthier for it. It’s all about her health. Right? I get that.

I haven’t heard from her since my birthday in 2018. That’s okay. Because on the day she left, I was fine with her leaving. I understood, and I knew where she would go. She’d retreat to her high school boyfriend.

And I get why she’s ghosted her best friend. Because she needs to be the wife to her husband, and the mom to her kids or whatever it is she’s doing. It just sucks that we all know who her best friend is, and that person is not allowed to be friends with her anymore. Simply due to the insecurities in her current. If you’re female, you can be friends with Michelle. If you’re male. No dice.

Hell, I ghost people. They need to be cut off. I just can’t have them in my life anymore.

I get it.

But I think this is it.

She was always texting me and face timing me for the last 5 years since she left. I think she finally found the assumed moral compass, to stop talking to the love of her life, so she could dedicate her life of what happiness is supposed to look like with her husband.

I get it. He always loved to control her. Control is weakness and insecurity. Relax Dave…you’ve won.  I just hope she can find some parcel of happiness in the choices she’s made.

Figure it out and you can still come to Janice’s house at Christmas!

(Kidding!)

Your hubby wouldn’t allow it!

Things are going well for Lorelei and me here in Rittenhouse. She’s doing great in her career and has been in a relationship with Ethan for over 5 years now. I’m managing a restaurant in Rittenhouse now and I love it.

I don’t go out anymore. Only occasionally with a close friend. The old crew has moved on, like they always do. I hope you’re doing well with your husband, and your job and family and life because that’s all I can hope.

I know I can leave this world knowing I helped one person.

I hope it was you Michelle, and I will always love you. No matter where you go, or what you do, I will always love you, and our time together.

Because it was magical and real.

And nobody can every take those memories away from us.

 

 

 

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

Buy my new book, Angel with a Broken Wing on June 20th, on Amazon!

Listen to the Phicklephilly podcast LIVE on Spotify!

Instagram: @phicklephilly    Facebook: phicklephilly    Twitter: @phicklephilly

Here’s How To Have Safe FaceTime Sex

Sexting and exchanging nudes is fun, but it’s not always enough to get you off when you and your partner can’t be together IRL. More than sexy Snapchats — and even more than tried-and-true phone sex — FaceTime sex is the closest you can get to enjoying the real-time thrills of sex IRL, and it’s not just for committed couples. FaceTime sex with a casual partner can always be an option if you want it to be. But, like with in-person sex, safe FaceTime sex should always be a priority — especially when you’re doing it with someone you don’t know too well.

In a long-distance relationship, you and your SO already have an established foundation of trust. Partners can nurture intimacy for months, or even years, before going long-distance. But that trust might not exist with someone you’ve only known for a few weeks, or with someone you’ve never actually met IRL at all. That’s why it’s important to take safety precautions during sex — no matter what form it takes — just like you would with IRL f*ck buddies, flings, and one-night stands.

Keep these pro-tips in mind if you’re curious about how to have FaceTime sex safely.

Be Selective About What You Show

Moyo Studio/E+/Getty Images

Approach FaceTime sex the way you’d approach sending nudes. For one, don’t include your face in the frame. “Keep in mind that tattoos can also be big signifiers, so try to avoid having any of them in nude photos, too,” Gigi Engle, certified sex coach and SKYN Sex and Intimacy Expert, tells Elite Daily.

Along with your face and tattoos, you’ll want to leave certain personal items or decorations out of the shot, too. “Whether FaceTiming or sending photos of any kind, be sure not to reveal identifying details in the background,” Alison Falk, a cybersecurity professional and president of Women of Sextech, tells Elite Daily. “It’s extremely easy to determine the location of where people live and work, when even the slightest details are exposed.”

If your cyber-sexual relationship develops beyond a one-night stand, you may not have to worry about hiding your face or tattoos in the future, but that might take some time. “Trust needs to be built before you engage in higher-risk sexting,” Dr. Chris Donaghue, a certified sex therapist and SKYN Sex and Intimacy Expert, tells Elite Daily.

Discuss Screenshots

While STDs, STIs, and pregnancy aren’t concerns that come with digital sex, it does pose its own risks: screenshots, screen recordings, and your partner possibly posting these nudes without consent. “These are things that don’t need to deter you, but you should discuss this possibility and talk about how violating it would be,” Engle explains. “It is sexual assault, as far as I’m concerned. Be open and honest that this would be completely not OK with you, and make sure they feel exactly the same way about it.”

No federal, anti-revenge porn law exists, says Falk. “So do everything possible to protect yourself legally.”

Forgo Alcohol & Other Substances

Dean Mitchell/E+/Getty Images

Make sure your mind is clear while engaging in FaceTime sex. If you enjoy indulging in some wine or other substances to take the edge off, consider abstaining prior to your cyber-sesh, says Engle, as they can impair your judgment and lead you to reveal more than you’re actually comfortable with. Especially if it’s your first time having FaceTime sex, leave the White Claws and weed behind.

Get Cryptic

When it comes to digital sex, privacy should be top-of-mind. “Do your homework first and be sure to use the right apps,” Falk says. “Everything is hackable. There is no bulletproof way to ensure 100% privacy with anything in our digital lives.” One encrypted app she recommends as an alternative to FaceTime or Zoom is Signal, which does have a video call feature. While you do still need to be wary of screenshots, Signal’s encryption protects you against hacking.

Make Sure You’re Comfortable

Charday Penn/E+/Getty Images

With both cyber sex or sex IRL, trust is the name of the game. But discerning whether your dating app match is trustworthy can be tricky. “This isn’t someone you know very well, so you can’t make that kind of call,” Engle says. “There is no special formula for accessing whether someone is a creep or not.”

Likewise, while Donaghue acknowledges the benefits of online sexual expression, he urges against having FaceTime sex with people you’re not super comfortable with. “Emotionally, you want to be able to let your guard down and really enjoy the eroticism and arousal.”

Even though there’s no real way to tell whether your digital f*ck buddy is someone you can trust, you can ask all the right questions to make that judgment to the best of your ability. Discuss what they’ve done with screenshots during other forms of cyber sex, like sexting. “Ask them what they did with pics they have been sent in the past from others, and if they ever share them,” Donaghue advises. “If they explain that they sext ethically and therefore delete after the sexting goal has been achieved — or the relationship ends — then that’s a good starting point.”

When you’re embarking on your sensual FaceTime adventures, remember that the same way dental dams, condoms, birth control and frank conversations can help put you at ease, so can taking proactive steps toward safe FaceTime sex.

 

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

Buy my new book, Angel with a Broken Wing on June 20th, on Amazon!

Listen to the Phicklephilly podcast LIVE on Spotify!

Instagram: @phicklephilly    Facebook: phicklephilly    Twitter: @phicklephilly

30 Celebrities Photoshopped Side-By-Side With Their Younger Selves Show How Aging Has Changed Them

I know this isn’t my usual dating and relationship content, but I love these!

Dutch graphic designer Ard Gelinck makes time travel possible. At least, for celebrities. Gelinck has been photoshopping famous people as if they’re hanging out with their younger selves, and the images come out so cool, you can’t help but wonder if some of his subjects have them framed.

Gelinck has worked on these photomontages for about 10 years now, but it doesn’t look like he’s running out of ideas. On the contrary. The graphic designer continues to delight his 258K Instagram followers with regular uploads. Continue scrolling to check out the latest ones, and for his earlier works, fire up Bored Panda’s older articles here and here.

This post may include affiliate links.

Matt Leblanc

ardgelinck Report

The graphic designer said he’s always trying to challenge himself when it comes to Photoshop. “The ‘Then and Now’ series is quite old when you consider that me and my brother made the first image for it about 10 years ago,” Gelinck told Bored Panda. “About 5 years ago, I edited pictures for a lot of Dutch celebrities and it was a success, so I then started working with foreign celebrity photos. The first one was Madonna, and she even posted my image on her own Instagram.”

The Queen of Pop, however, isn’t the only Gelinck subject who has publicly admired his work. Rob Lowe, Tina Turner, Lionel Richie, Annie Lennox, BeeGees, Jason Priestly, Keshia Knight Pulliam, Carice van Houten, Sylvester Stallone, Robbie Williams, Michael Douglas, Ricky Gervais, and many more have also given him a shoutout. “When I think about it, the list is quite impressive,” Gelinck said.

Carrie Fisher

When the Photoshop wizard is composing the pictures, he’s often trying to make the subject and their former self embrace one another, be it an arm on the shoulder on a hug. “[The actual pose] depends on a lot of things. I’m trying to find one where they’re standing next to each other.”

The graphic designer thinks that his project has become so popular because people enjoy taking a trip down memory lane. Each of Gelinck’s images is like a shot of nostalgia that brings back past moments of enjoying music chart hits, TV shows, and movies.

Daniel Radcliffe

David Bowie

Ryan Reynolds

Kevin McCallister & Macaulay Culkin

Jennifer Aniston

Conan O’brien

Tom Hanks

Robert De Niro

Brad Pitt

Queen Elizabeth

Will Smith

Pierce Brosnan

Tom Felton & Draco Malfoy

Ricky Gervais

Hugh Grant

Dave Grohl

Julia Roberts

Matthew Perry

Harrison Ford

Mark Hamill

Peter Venkman (Bill Murray)

The Rock

Sean Astin

Jamie Lee Curtis

Dolly Parton

George Michael

Whoopi Goldberg

George Clooney

 

 

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

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Life Before Quarantine – Part 6

During quarantine I’ve been fairly productive. I get my energy from people but I really enjoy my alone time. My daughter agrees. We’re both perfectly happy being on our own. I was looking through some photos the other day and I got some great memories of when we were all allowed to come out and play. I thought I’d share some of them with you. I’ll run this series every week until I run out of photos! If you see yourself, hit me up!

I’m very fortunate to have met you all and enjoyed the times we had together. Thank you!

Enjoy!

 

Two Face takes a wife…

 

 

 

 

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

Buy Phicklephilly THE BOOK now available on Amazon!

Listen to the Phicklephilly podcast LIVE on Spotify!

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