Wildwood Daze – Maritime Fun – Part 2

Philadelphia, PA – 1976

My father was a Vice President at the Provident National Bank in center city. In his time with the bank, he had risen up the ranks and had made dozens of friends and contacts. My dad was a charming and effervescent guy. Everybody liked him. He was the “cool” dad to my friends. A guy who shot from the hip and not afraid to tell it like it was. I think my mom and I would disagree with some of that.

He had a diverse set of friends and acquaintances around Philly. One of his friends was this rich lawyer who drove a Rolls Royce. He’d get drunk and stay in the city at his apartment at The Drake. He’d tell my dad to take his Rolls for the night and bring it back to him the next day. I remember getting driven to school in a Rolls Royce one morning and it was like sitting in my living room.

This lawyer guy was a total maniac. One night he was hit by a drunk driver in the Rolls. The drunk guy who hit him was killed instantly in the crash, and the Rolls was the only thing that saved my dad’s friend’s life. They took him to the hospital, and while he was waiting to go in to get checked out, he bummed a cigarette off of somebody in the lobby. (You could smoke anywhere, anytime back in the 70s!) As the man is puffing away on the cig, he notices that smoke is coming out of the side of his shirt. In the accident, his lung had been punctured and the smoke was leaking from his wound. The man told the doctors not to put him under anesthetic. Just sew him up while he was fully awake. He said, “If you put me under, I’ll die.”

Yea, this dude was a wildman. He would be speeding down the Garden State Parkway with my dad in his Rolls, and my father would warn him to watch his speed. The guy would simply say, “Let the cops mail me the ticket.”

Lunatic.

But this story is about another friend of my father’s. He owned/managed a restaurant that my dad and his friends would frequent in the city. It was called Davinci’s. My father became friends with the man, and they’d chat at length. We’ll call him Steve, and leave it at that.

He loved hearing about my dad’s place at the seashore, the sweet sea air, and the sheer bliss of having a shore house. Steve wanted this for his family.

Steve had a hot wife who was a slender redhead with an unforgettable bustline. His eldest daughter Jaime was a slightly curvier version of her mother who was blessed with the same assets. He also had an adorable younger daughter Stacy, who was a delightful, hip kid despite her young age.

Wildwood, New Jersey – 1977

So, Steve decides to buy a shore house right around the corner from us on 9th street. It was nice hanging out on the beach with this family. Steve was a charming guy. Picture Lou Ferrigno but without the speech impediment. His wife Jackie was a lovely woman who became fast friends with my mother.

My friends and I, being 15-year-old boys, were instantly enthralled in the presence of daughter Jaime. She exuded raw sexuality and aloofness which fascinated us. (In hindsight, I think it was just that body) Jaime wanted nothing to do with twerps like us. She was already dating older dudes.

Here’s a photo I found of me and hot Jaime.

This is what we’re dealing with. That girl is only a year older than me. She’s built like a woman and I look like a twink next to her. What made things worse for us guys was, she and her friend Debbie would go out into the ocean up to their necks. They would then proceed to remove their tops and swing them around their heads. We were like… “Are they trying to make our brains explode?”

My bathing suit was wet when this photo was taken, but there was endless ribbing from my friends about how it looked like I was “sportin’ one” because I was standing next to her.

Here’s another shot of me with Jamie and Carol. (Sandy’s older sister from the previous chapter)

The struggle was real.

Sigh… I need to move on.

Their house was nothing like ours because they were obviously wealthy. I remember seeing a french phone on a fancy table in their house. Who has a $100 phone in their seashore house in the 70s?

French Crystal Telephone | French Phones at NoveltyTelephone.com

We just assumed they were loaded. They owned a restaurant in Philly. They must be rich. We don’t know anything.

One day, we’re all on the beach and Steve tells my dad that he’s acquired a little boat. (Like the one in the photo above) He’s determined to firmly ensconced himself into seaside living. Apparently, he had won the boat in a card game in Philly. That’s some high stakes, I thought. (I think the boat was worth $12k) He told my father that he could use it any time he wanted.

It was a cool little boat to have access to. My father of course got me a little book to read about boating. I like how before my dad took on anything new he tried to learn all he could about it. He passed that good trait onto me. I read the book cover to cover. I knew starboard from port, and bow to aft. I also knew that if the tide was going out that you had to give the boat that was traveling with the tide the ‘right of way’. All of these things are as important as rules that apply to the road when you’re driving a car.

I remember the boat being up on its trailer in our yard for a period of time. Somehow it was my job to scrub the barnacles off the bottom of the hull and paint it with a special blue paint to keep them from getting back on there.

I also studied the steering mechanism of the boat and rewired the whole thing with fresh cable to fix the steering. That was my contribution to our new shared toy.

Before we ever left the dock my father would always make his presence known with someone on staff. He would tell them where we were going and how long we expected to be out. Safety first!

On the property of the marina was this goose named Thor. He was like the watchdog of the whole place. I had seen him on several occasions squawk and chase hapless mariners around the property. Head down, wings out, at a full angry run.

We’d take the boat out and dad taught me how to drive it. It wasn’t like the boat I had previously ridden in. This had a steering wheel and a throttle. (Way cooler!) You’d get it out in the bay and gun the throttle up, and the nose of the boat would rise up as the boat went faster. I still had much fear about the ocean and water in general, but I really enjoyed driving the little speedboat around.

Once my dad took my sister and me out of the bay and across the channel into the ocean. We were across from second and JFK Blvd at the northern point of the isle. Once we crossed the channel, (which I was told had been dredged to 40 feet deep so the bigger boats could travel through it!) he drove us out to a huge sandbar 100 yards offshore. This amazed me at the time. One always thinks that the farther you go out into the ocean the deeper the water becomes. This is true, unless there’s a sandbar.

He beached the boat and tossed out the anchor. So we were far from the shore and standing on dry land because the tide was low. It was like being on a small desolate island offshore from Wildwood. My mother had packed us all lunches and we had a little picnic out there that afternoon. Everything always tastes better at the shore!

Dad would get his fishing rod out and cast a few times back into the channel. Normally, if there is a sand bar, the bigger fish hang out at the edge of it, waiting for the little fish to come across the sand bar as the tide rolls in.  As they reach the deep water they get eaten by the bigger fish. My dad was hoping to get one of those fish to fall for his lure.

I walked on the sandbar away from shore. It’s so cool because if you walk east you would think the water would suddenly get deeper and you’d go into the sea. But I could walk really far out into the ocean and it only remained a foot or so deep. It was weird to be so far offshore and only be in water up to your knees for 50 yards. But of course, the idea of all of this went against all of my instincts and I didn’t stay out there long. That coupled with my active imagination. I had remembered reading that most shark attacks against humans occurred in less than three feet of water. So I was pretty sure, even though I was in shallow water, I was really far from the shore. I was positive there were tons of big sharks out there just waiting to kill and eat me there. So, I quickly got back to the safety of the sandbar and my dad.

We had some good times out in that little boat. I have another story about our fishing exploits on that boat in another post.

The tide would start coming in and we’d head back to the marina. We took care of that boat like it was our own. But that’s how our parents raised us. You clean up after yourself and you take good care of things that don’t belong to you.

However, this wasn’t the case with Steve’s family. His daughter Jaime and one of her boyfriends would go out in the boat on occasion. We’d find trash in the boat and things in just general disarray onboard when we’d go to use it.

I remember finding a bottle of men’s aftershave stowed under the dashboard of the boat once. I was looking for something when I came upon it.

“Hey, dad. Now we don’t have to worry if the boat sinks.”

“Why not, son?”

Amazon.com: Canoe By Dana For Men. Aftershave 8-Ounce: Beauty

“Because we can just hop into this!”

I don’t think my dad really liked having to share the boat with Jamie and her friends, but it was Steve’s boat, and she was his daughter, so there was little we could do.

I was once sitting on the beach with my next-door neighbor. We were just minding our own business and chilling on the banket. Jaime’s boyfriend comes rolling up to us. He was this big, tanned, buffed-out dude named Rocky. We used to refer to him as “Rocky Berufi” because it just seemed to fit him. (Happy Days TV show reference) He was just a big meathead.

So he comes over and says: “Where’s Jaime?!”

“We don’t know. Isn’t it your job to watch her?” (Me, always the wise guy)

This response only serves to infuriate the brute even further. He grabs our little bag of pepperidge farm goldfish crackers and proceeds to crush it in his hand, turning the contents to dust.

This is like being in a cartoon. Are we supposed to be afraid of this guy?

“Where is she?”

“We really haven’t seen her, Rocky.”

And off he goes down the beach looking for her. I’m sure Jaime was probably out somewhere with a new suitor. We got a fit of laughing after his dramatic exit.

At some point, Steve started giving me $5 a week. He told me that if it ever rained, I was to promise to go out to the marina and bail the water out of the boat. Back then, I was happy to have the free cash and it seemed like an easy gig.  But I was young and busy with my life at the shore. Things slip your mind when you’re a teenager. Too many distractions!

I also wondered if he has the disposable income to pass on to me, why doesn’t he simply invest in a tarp to cover the boat?

Well, one day it really rained hard and I totally forgot to go check on the boat.

It flooded and sank to the bottom of the bay.

He came over to our house and gave me an earful. I was sure that I was in deep trouble. But the gods were smiling upon me that day. My father snapped at him for going behind his back and giving his son money to bail out his boat instead of buying a tarp.

All was forgiven, but we really didn’t use the boat much after that.

I really liked that family. They were really fun people to be around. Much different than my family. My favorite memory of Steve was when their dog once ran away during a thunderstorm. They were from Philly, so the dog probably spent its life in a nice apartment in a building in center city. But at the shore the weather was wild, and thunderstorms on the cape could be intense.

So, their dog panics and gets out of the house, and takes off. I’ll never forget that night. Hours passed and Steve came back into the house after looking for the lost dog. He was soaking wet and quite agitated, but happy he had located his lost dog in the storm.

But here’s the thing. It wasn’t his lost dog. It didn’t even look like his dog. It had short hair and was obviously an older stray.

“Steve… I don’t think that’s your dog. Your dog had longer fur than that dog has.”

“What kind of sicko steals another man’s dog and shaves his fur off to make him look different?!”

“Yea… I think it might be time to lay off the coke, dude.”

The family only kept their shore house for a few seasons before they sold it and didn’t return to the shore again.

But with every encounter in life, a story is born.

 

 

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Tales of Rock – Wild Stories Of Rock Stars Taking Their Fame Way Too Far – Part 2

11. Van Morrison Recorded 30 Songs In One Day
If the rumors are true, that would have meant that Van Morrison recorded a more than one song every hour. Given that your average track is only 3-4 minutes long, it’s certainly not unfeasible. Especially not for Van Morrison who has always been somewhat of a prolific and brilliant singer and songwriter.
In 1967, we’re pretty sure he broke the record for the most songs recorded (to any discernable quality) in one sitting. The reason why he did it is even better! Morrison was tied into a pretty miserable record contract that wanted 36 tracks out of him before he could escape. In a genius move he smashed out 30 in a day, although not all of them were all that great, it’s still ridiculously impressive. Hell yeah!
12. Michael Jackson Wrote Music For Sonic The Hedgehog 3
Did the greatest Popstar of all time write the music for one of the most successful video game franchises of all time? It turns out that he did! Michael Jackson was the magnificent mind behind the music for the iconic 1993 console game Sonic the Hedgehog 3. Now that you consider Michael Jacksons’ quirky nature, it doesn’t seem all that out there to consider the fact he created one of the most infectiously catchy theme tunes of all time!
The rumor started when one MJ superfan found a strange similarity in sound between the game’s music and MJ’s famous style. The rumor floated around the internet for years before being confirmed in January 2016 by the composers of the soundtrack of the Sega game.
13. David Bowie Can’t Remember Recording One Of His Albums
At the point in time when David Bowie recorded Station to Station, it’s easy to see he was in a pretty dark place. The recording happened during all-night sessions in the studio when Bowie was living a somewhat vampiric existence and eating a ridiculously small amount of food daily.
Somehow, he made it through the hazy experience in 1976 in a Los Angeles studio with a rather blank recollection of the entire process. Looking back, it is easy to see that Bowie was suffering from pretty severe cocaine psychosis, making Station to Station potentially one of the darkest albums ever recorded. Bowie may not be able to remember, but we’ll never forget the iconic masterpiece that stemmed from his delirium. (God, we already miss him.)
14. Keith Richards Doesn’t Sleep
Surely this one can’t be true, can it? No, not quite, he is human after all – just about. Keith Richard’s sleeping patterns do almost defy human physiology, though. In an interview, Keith Richards told an interviewer that he basically runs off the fumes of adrenaline.
The longest that Keith Richards has gone without sleep is nine days, which we suppose is almost as impressive as not sleeping at all, considering the amount of awesome music he created in the times he was at his most sleep-deprived. If his 1978 track, Before they Make Me Run, from the album Some Girls sounds a little otherworldly, now you know why. He was also prone to collapsing at a moment’s notice against speakers. That’s not quite as Rock n Roll is it?
15. Gram Parsons’ Body Was Stolen
First things, first. Yes, it’s absolutely true. After the sad death of Graham Parson, his corpse was exhumed. After receiving high acclaim as the man that brought the Byrds into a brand-new arena of sound, he tragically died aged 26 on September 19th, 1973. What happened to him after death was almost as exciting as the raucous adventures he got up to when he was alive.
Gram had previously expressed his wishes to be cremated instead of buried, however, his father decided on funeral arrangements that weren’t in keeping with his son’s. Therefore, fellow road manager Phil Kaufman and his assistant took it upon themselves to steal the body and set alight to it in the desert. More surprisingly, there were no criminal charges and only a $300 fine.
16. Prince Went Door To Door As a Jehovah’s Witness In Minnesota
This one won’t be much of a surprise to hardcore Prince fans who knew at a time that his religion meant everything to him. Imagine opening your door and seeing Prince standing there, ready and willing to teach his faith.
Before his untimely death, Prince once went under the guise of ‘Brother Nelson’ and not so coincidentally ended up getting spotted by a fan. His church elder James Lundstrom recalled that Prince, we mean, “Brother Nelson” was a very shy man, but a member in good standing. Considering most of the reasons why rock stars are on this list, we’d say Prince’s are the most respectable, even if they are somewhat conflicting with his overtly sexual on-stage persona. He also cared a lot for ‘God’s Kingdom’.
17. Axl Rose Recorded Himself Having Sex For Rocket Queen
Yes, that’s right, the sex moans on his track Rocket Queen weren’t fake. Axl Rose enlisted the help of keen groupie Adriana Smith, who agreed to enter the studio with Axl and the other legendary musicians to create the track. She was certainly very brave!
Alongside Axl Rose’s steamy moans you will also be able to hear Adriana having quite a bit of fun with the vocalist. She has recently come out and admitted her role in the track after keeping pretty quiet about her involvement in the production. It sounds like Slash didn’t want to get left out after Adriana told the Mirror that a threesome also happened that evening. Axl and Adriana romantically met whilst she was working as a stripper in the LA club, Seventh Veil.
18. Rick James Was High As Hell On American Bandstand
Considering the X-rated nature of Rick James’s memoirs, this should really come as no surprise, and we’re not actually sure it’s the most ludicrous rumor in circulation about the legendary artist. The artist, who died in 2004 of a heart attack, posthumously released the accounts of his life, and it’s not for the faint-hearted.
James made his national TV debut on American Bandstand where he performed his most acclaimed singles, You and I and Mary Jane, along with an hour-long interview with Dick Clark, who he later referred to as “one of the nicest cats he’d ever met”. We suppose everyone seems pretty nice when you’re high, though, don’t they? James’s cocaine high didn’t go unnoticed by Dick Clark or the millions of viewers watching.
19. Rapper Danny Brown Received Oral Sex While Performing
Following on from the Wyman scandal, this one almost seems tame – well at least it’s almost legal. We’re guessing rapper Danny Brown didn’t get prosecuted for indecent exposure after his X-rated performance, which pushed the idea of embracing sexuality on stage just a little bit further.
Elvis may have once shocked the nation in the 50s with his gyrating hips, yet Danny Brown showed how far sexuality in musical culture has evolved when he allowed a female fan to give him a blowjob on stage back in 2013 when he was performing live in Minnesota. We’re just amazed that he could carry on hitting the notes during his performance. If there was ever a sign of a true rock star, we think this is it.
20. Ozzy Osborne Snorts Ants
Ozzy Osborne has gained his third entry on the ridiculous rumors list, making him the most prolifically anarchistic rock star in our minds. Sadly, it’s yet another incident that meant the death of innocent life. We can’t imagine any of these acts won him any favors with animal rights groups.
Whilst it’s not uncommon for rock stars to put things up their noses, this is an extreme by anyone’s standards. The incident happened when Ozzy found himself in the company of Nikki Sixx from Motley Crue on tour. When Ozzy heard they were all out of cocaine, he snorted what he believed to be the next best thing, making Motley Crue look rather tame in comparison to his little escapades. We can only imagine how much it stung the next day.

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Tales of Rock – Wild Stories Of Rock Stars Taking Their Fame Way Too Far – Part 1

We can’t count the number of times we’ve heard the most outrageous rumors about rock stars, particularly those from the wild 60s and 70s. It’s probably how they wrote so many hits. Get ready to be shocked at what these ridiculous rockers really got up to when they weren’t on stage.
You’ve probably got plenty of images in your head: beautiful groupies, out-of-control backstage parties, crazy road trips, sex, drugs, and rock and roll. It was a unique time in history and we’re happy to tell you that these rumors contain all of the above and so much more.
There’s absolutely no doubt about it – some of the craziest rumors definitely aren’t true and some stories have clearly just been fabricated. But a whole bunch of them have been confirmed as fact, and we’re about to reveal every single one! We honestly couldn’t believe how wild number 45 is.
1. Nikki Sixx And Tommy Lee Went Months Without Showering
Given that Motley Crue are a glam rock band, the fact that they went months without showering is slightly ridiculous and not to mention very gross. In fact, it may well be our biggest beef with rock stars and punk musicians. Although, the story behind this rumor is a little funny at least.
The two bandmates decided to wager a bet in 1980 whilst sitting in a hot tub to see who could go the longest without showering or bathing. After months had gone by, neither of them had cracked. That was until Nikki Sixx was receiving oral sex from a female fan who got so nauseated she ended up throwing up her spaghetti dinner in his crotch. We’re assuming he washed after that.
2. Sid Vicious Shot Up Drugs With Random Bodily Fluids
Sid Vicious did a lot of truly despicable things in his relatively short yet raucous life span. We’re not sure which should feature more highly on the list, the fact that he almost definitely killed his girlfriend Nancy or the fact that he shot up heroin from a toilet.
Yes, you heard that right, a toilet. It’s one thing doing heroin, but it’s quite another thing to use toilet water laced with urine and vomit in the syringe, which he later used to shoot up with. Is it any wonder the Sex Pistols bassist didn’t quite make it to old age? Probably not. Witness to the event was none other than Ramones bassist Dee See, who we can imagine was a little bit mortified by Vicious’s abhorrent behavior.
3. Tupac Shakur’s Friends Smoked His Ashes
While Tupac is sadly no longer with us to confirm if this rumor is true or false, we’re going to have to say it’s looking pretty likely that this one will turn out to be true. We can’t say for sure, but we think he would have approved of this rather macabre grieving process. His ashes were smoked by the members of his notorious rap group ‘The Outlawz’ who have willingly confirmed that the rumors are indeed true.
Perhaps they could be cashing in on the notoriety the myth has brought them, however, they were all too happy to confirm that their track “Black Jesus” was inspired by their practice of smoking their fallen friend’s ashes mixed with cannabis. Or perhaps that was how the myth was born and they went along for the ride?
4. Rolling Stones Bassist Bill Wyman Fell for a 13-Year-Old
It wasn’t all too uncommon for rock stars of the 70s to fall in love with teens who hadn’t quite hit the age of consent. The bassist for the rolling stones, Bill Wyman, raised a few eyebrows at the peak of his fame with his courtship of a 13-year old girl.
Wyman was a fixture of the Rolling Stones for over 30 years, so there’s no surprise that he’s had a string of questionable relationships, but this one really makes your stomach churn considering the fact he was 48 years old at the time. How do the Rolling Stones even sell records anymore? Even more absurdly, Wyman married the once 13-year old Mandy Smith on her 18th birthday. It must have been love. Just really creepy, morally wrong, illegal love.
5. Marilyn Manson Rubbed His Genitals On a Security Guard’s Head
Marilyn Manson has been an absolute magnet for ridiculous rumors, however, we can confirm that this one is true, unlike the rib removal rumor which bounced around in the 2000s. He has always been a man of fairly poor taste (e.g. cheating on ex-girlfriend, Dita) but this bold move was a little grotesque, which was a sentiment shared by Marilyn Manson’s attorney.
The incident involved a security guard in Michigan who was unwillingly floored by Manson before he rubbed his crotch on his head and made improper contact with him. Manson got off lightly with the charge of disorderly behavior, assault, and battery. Considering he could have been dubbed a sex offender we’d say he was lucky. He claimed it to be a victory for art’.
6. Charles Manson Wrote a Song for The Beach Boys
In most cases rumors as ridiculous as this isn’t true. but this one has been bouncing around for a while and astonishingly it’s sort of true. Some of the details are a little hazy, but what can be confirmed is that after Charles Manson was released from prison in 1967, he started sharing some of his songs around in LA.
None other than Dennis Wilson from the Beach boys got his hands on one of his songs “Never Learn Not to Love” and eventually got around to releasing it in 1969. Rumor has it that the song was left almost completely intact. After the lyrical exchange, Manson started hanging out at Dennis’s mansion before the ex-convict’s infamous behavior terminated their friendship and got him kicked out.
7. Ozzy Osbourne Bit The Head Off a Bat
Okay, so this one is pretty popular, and it turns out that it’s absolutely true without any question of doubt. There were plenty of witnesses who saw the dazed Rock star making a rather idiotic or desperate move to wow his fans whilst he was on stage.
During a rather raucous performance, one of his fans threw an unconscious bat on stage (where you would find an unconscious bat is another thing entirely). Whilst Ozzy was channeling his Satanic stage presence, he mistook the live rodent for a stage prop – and the rest is history. We’ll spare you the gory details, but he did go to get a rabies shot after his performance. The video is even available on YouTube if you’re brave enough to watch it.
8. Ozzy Osbourne Will Apparently Bite The Head Off Anything With Wings
The heavy metal performer has quite the appetite, doesn’t he? If decapitating a bat wasn’t bad enough, it turns out that’s not the only time that Ozzy Osborne sunk his teeth into an innocent creature.
Even before the bat incident, Ozzy thought he’d take it upon himself to bite the head off a dove to impress a record label. The dove’s demise happened during Ozzy’s first meeting with Columbia Records. He put on quite a show when he released two doves in the office in front of the executives. Instead of releasing one of them, he chose to bite the head off one of them. However, can Ozzy be fully to blame when it was his wife Sharon’s idea in the first place?
9. Jerry Lee Lewis Married His 13-Year-Old Cousin
Jerry Lee Lewis may have once been a much-desired Rock n Roll musical pioneer, but that wasn’t enough to prevent his once-loyal following from ditching him once they found out that he had indeed married his first cousin when she was just 13 years old.
With a blindingly successful music career ahead of him after his competition (Elvis) had been drafted into the army, he was set to become America’s most treasured rock star until in 1958 he married his cousin before going on a European tour. Surprisingly Jerry Lee Lewis did claw back a small fraction of his infamy thanks to his fans that could excuse pedophilia and incest. We would say to this day he is still deserving of the stigma that surrounds him.
10. Van Halen Didn’t Want Any Brown M&Ms In Their Dressing Room
At this point we are breathing a sigh of relief that not all our favorite musicians of all time are sexually perverted or like to sadistically injure innocent animals, so we are thrilled to announce that yes, the Rock band Van Halen were really pedantic enough to request that no brown M&Ms ended up in their dressing room.
Whilst it’s not too uncommon for rock stars to have ridiculous requests, this one is one of the most prolific examples of the ultimate diva rock star behavior. The reason behind it? In 2012 Van Halen explained their strange behavior. The band just wanted to see if the promoters actually read their contracts, if there were brown M&Ms in the dressing room there was trouble.

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

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Wildwood Daze – Overcast Skies

North Wildwood, New Jersey – 1977-1978

Every morning when you woke up in your bed at the seashore, normally the first thing you heard was the distant cry of a seagull. It was a grounding sound that let you know you weren’t in the city anymore.

Back in 1977, I’d get up every morning, 7 days a week, and go to my job at the El Morro Motel where I worked as a pool boy. It was my first job, and as much as I liked having a job and not being grounded, I always hoped for rain.

But to the best of my memory, it only rained a couple of days that summer. Which is great for the local resort community’s economy, but I rarely ever got a day off. I mean, I only worked from 7 am to noon each day due to my age, but a guy needs a day of rest occasionally. But, I didn’t really mind. I had boundless energy back in those days at age 14, and once I finished at the motel, had the rest of the day to play.

When it rained at the shore it always felt a little sad. The island relied on the sunshine to provide the one thing everybody who came to the shore was looking for. Go to the beach, sit by the pool, hit the boardwalk, and go on the rides at night. If it rained the tourists would be pretty much holed up in their motel rooms, watching television, eating, drinking, and playing cards.

Some folks would put on their rain slickers, grab a couple of umbrellas and head to the movies for the afternoon. There were plenty of theaters in town. The Hunt’s Corporation owned them all. The Blaker, The Strand, and The Shore Twin, just to name a few. I would later work for Hunt’s in 1980.

Blaker Theatre in Wildwood, NJ - Cinema Treasures

Others would brave the wind and rain and head up to the boardwalk to play in the arcades because all of the rides were closed. All the shops were open, and people could buy souvenirs or try their hand at a few games of chance.

I will say, after a good thunderstorm, the ocean was usually still a bit angry. The wind and surf could be a bit wild. I’ve experienced some of the best body surfing in the waves after a good rainstorm. The feeling of that powerful, bubbly water washing over you was better than any spa treatment you could get today.

But, I couldn’t go to work because the pool was closed and people couldn’t go to the beach. So what to do on a rainy day?

My friend from next door and I would take a walk along Surf Avenue. We lived on 8th street and would make the trek down to 17th street. The only time I ever saw my neighbor wear shoes was if he was going to the boardwalk at night. Other than that, we all spent the summer barefoot.

The reason we went to 17th street was that there was a big open shop that carried all of the usual things most resort community stores provide. It not only served as a huge newsstand where you could get newspapers, cigarettes, and candy, it pretty much carried everything you’d need for a day at the shore. Sunglasses, beach towels, t-shirts, paperback books, magazines, suntan lotion, beach toys, and all of your other seashore and beach needs. But the only reason my neighbor and I would go to this particular shop was that they had not one, but five racks full of comic books!

Back then comic books only cost twenty cents. So, if you had a dollar in your pocket, you could buy five comics! So between the two of us, we’d usually leave that place with ten brand new comics! That was an entire afternoon of reading quality stories together. Our favorites were horror comics!

Mixed horror Comic Books (Lot of 6) Vintage 1972-1974

We’d normally park ourselves on his big porch. We’d sit on the astroturf covered floor and lean on the support posts across from each other. Once you were finished reading one, you’d simply toss it over to your friend. We’d do this for hours as the rain beat down on the metal awnings around the porch.

Sometimes we’d get together with my sister and her friend Sandy and break out the board games. Our go-to game was Monopoly. That game was amazing. We’ve all played it and it’s based on the streets in Atlantic City where the game found its origin.

We’d pick our little playing pieces and off we’d go. I always liked being the car, and I think my friend was the hat. I don’t remember what pieces the girls picked but, I don’t think either of them really cared.

During one part of the book they play monopoly every night and the games would get very heated and the pieces would g… | Monopoly pieces, Monopoly game, Game pieces

We loved playing monopoly because it was such a fun competitive game. The object is to become a giant property owner and destroy your opponents financially. Pure Americana right there!

But before each game, my friend and fellow comic book and Mad magazine fan would sing a little song. It became a ritual before each game. I loved doing this so much, I never forgot any of the lyrics we sang about the game of Monopoly. The melody of our little song came from the United States Marine Corps Hymn. So, this was a serious moment before each game in an attempt to beat the girls and win all the money.

You can pick this tune up at the 0.40 second mark to hear the melody.

Here’s the lyrics we sang before each game of Monopoly.

From the slums of Baltic Avenue to Boardwalk and Park Place.

We will buy up all the properties. Put hotels on every space.

We will drive our foes to bankruptcy if they fail to pay the price.

But we cannot even start the game, till someone finds the dice!

Then we’d start the game. It was a riot.

We’d play as two teams. This way we could share ideas and strategies. There were times we’d have to take a short break from the game and go in another room and have a conference about what was to be our next move. Should we attempt to acquire all of the railroads? What about the utility companies? Is there any possibility that cheating could become an option to win?

We’d return to the table and carry on. I don’t know if the girls needed these little meetings. I think they were just happy to play and have something to do on a rainy day.

The game takes hours to complete, so we’d have these marathon gaming sessions. The girls were good. Too good. They made wise financial decisions and thoughtful, methodical moves. On the other hand, my friend and I were a bit more reckless with our money. Our only object was to win and destroy our opponents. But the ladies were slow and steady. They were slightly older than we were and patient in their approach. Great development skills for the future I suppose.

We've All Been Playing Monopoly Wrong Our Entire Lives | Vintage board games, Childhood games, Childhood memories

If my friend and I were ahead, we’d gloat and act like idiots. But I suppose that’s just typical teenage boy behavior. We’d have moments of glory and bask in the victory of our decisions. But, slowly the girls would basically take us apart. I don’t mean the occasional win by some lucky roll of the dice. The girls would systematically annihilate us on the board. We’d be mortgaging our properties and facing bankruptcy, as the girls calmly moved forward with their program. Being testosterone-loaded boys we didn’t take kindly to their evil, diabolical schemes against us.

Was this really happening? Were we being faced with the stone-cold reality of being beaten by a couple of girls? Well, you don’t know my sister. While my friend and I were laughing and thinking we could ace the game, she was probably thinking three moves ahead of us. Classic ant and the grasshopper level stuff going on here on the floor of our living room.

Things would begin to look a bit bleak for us financially, as the girls rolled the dice and hopped around the board. The pressure was on. We had to turn this situation around. We had to win. Losing was not an option.

Our financial world was beginning to crumble before our young startled eyes. What to do?

It was time to take one of our many breaks to reassess the situation and our assets. This was serious. The girls would relent and let us go into another room to discuss our future game plan. They’d get up, stretch their legs, grab a soda and a snack. They’d then resume their positions around the board and patiently wait for our return. They knew it was just a matter of time before they would grind our dreams of being land barons into dust.

Knowing the losers would have to clean up and put away the game for next time was too great a punishment. How could we dig our way out of this seemingly hopeless situation?

A bit of time passed, and we weren’t back from our closed-door meeting to discuss our plan. So the girls called out to us to come back and finish the game. When we didn’t respond, they came looking for us. But we were no longer in the other room.

We did what any teenage boys would do with the threat of being defeated.

The girls heard the sound of us outside and saw as we ran past the front porch windows.

They did what any victors would do in this situation. They chased us both all the way down the street until they caught us. We would both sheepishly march back and have to clean up the game like good boys as my mother looked on. Like a warden, she made sure the escaped felons were brought to justice and made sure we cleaned it up properly and not just dumped everything back in the box.

The best part for us was being chased down the street by my sister and her friend. It was all in good fun. We were all laughing hysterically, and it was just another rainy day at the seashore.

Tomorrow the sun would return and we’d all be back on the beach where we belonged.

 

 

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10 Ways You Are Unintentionally Ruining Your Relationship

It is easier to ruin a relationship than to keep it. Sometimes, even without intending to, we are already ruining the relationship we worked so hard to keep. Not that it is really a great deal of hard work—because if you are working too hard then there must be something wrong—but keeping a healthy relationship requires time, emotional availability, sufficient privacy and individual space, and a great deal of maturity from the couple or anyone involved. Whatever relationship we have, be it friendship or life partnership, our habits and tendencies can ruin the good thing we have if we fail to notice the red flags. Sometimes, even with good intentions, we still end up pushing our partners away instead of luring them in and keeping them.

If you want to keep the relationship going, stop doing these things and you will surely have a lasting and healthy relationship.

1. Always Playing the Victim Card

Some people have a tendency to use “guilt trip” against their partner. For example, you have to do something you’ve never done before in the name of the relationship, like leave your comfort zone and meet people, or leave your family and go abroad and work a menial job that you wouldn’t normally do because, in your country, you are someone cut out for a corporate job or a job with higher pay-grade; Or you have to sacrifice your girl’s night out because you have to take care of the kids or when you have to decide to forego that beautiful dress because you still have unpaid bills. More often than not, we are guilty of playing the victim card just because things did not go our way. You blame your partner because if not for him/her, you wouldn’t have to do such a thing.

Playing the victim card just to make your partner/friend give in to what you want is not good. It is stressful. When you make your partner the bad guy and you the victim by blaming everything on them, you just push them away. Instead of pointing fingers, why don’t you appreciate what they are doing for you and stop complaining too much about your life because clearly your partner also had to forego some things in their life just for you. That is called compromise and instead of whining all the time, be grateful instead and try to work things out together by doing your part wholeheartedly. You are in that relationship because you are together and it means that you share both the good times and bad times. Both of you have your own responsibilities so do yours and don’t just rely on your partner to do everything for the both of you. If you have to clean your house and do the dishes and you never have to do that before because someone else was doing that for you (house help or sibling), you need to realize that you now have a different life and so you shouldn’t live the way you used to.

2. Walking Out of an Argument or Not Saying Anything at All

Arguments are normal. You are different people after all so normally you have different opinions and beliefs about some things. However, some people tend to avoid arguments for various reasons like they never win anyway, or the topic is nonsense, to begin with, or there’s just no way for the couple to agree. If that’s the case, instead of walking out or not saying anything at all, it is better to agree to disagree. You both have your points to make and so you hear each other out. DO not dismiss what the other has to say especially if it is about their emotion. Never ever argue with someone’s emotion especially if it is your partner. When you dismiss their feelings, you make them feel unloved or unimportant. If you are upset, say it. If you are mad, say it. Do not just leave or ignore your partner.

There are times, however, when it is easy to pretend we are busy so we don’t have to deal with the arguments but that is just wrong. If you know that you are incapable of talking it out at that time because you are upset, tell your partner that you are upset and that he/she should give you time to cool down, and then you can discuss afterward. Know when to walk away. When things get heated or words become too abusive or hurtful, then it is better to walk away than make matters worse. But in healthy relationships, a person doesn’t just slam the door in your face or leave you screaming on your own. They communicate. That is how mature couples do it and it works every time often ending up with make-up intimacy.

3. Sleeping Without Resolving Issues

Do not let it become a habit to sleep with unresolved issues. First, because it feels so constricting to sleep beside your partner without talking, second, it starts your next day on a negative light and it basically just ruins your whole day and the days after until you resolve the issue. The most important reason of all is that, one of you might not wake up the next day and the last thing you said to each other was hurtful or a painful silence. I know, it seemed too negative to even think about it and call me paranoid or what not but it is what it is. We live in a world where people die in their sleep and imagine how devastating it would be for someone left behind with nothing but that painful memory of their last moments together. It is utterly regrettable, right? So make sure to even things out before sleeping. It is extremely beneficial for both of you to have a peaceful sleep and a fresh new start the next day. If you start the day right, you will be more productive at work and just generally in life.

Conflicts are normal and sometimes we cannot help but sleep on unresolved issues because we are so tired or it is just too much for us at the moment, in this case, you need to tell your partner that you will talk about it in the morning and don’t forget to say “I am upset but I love you. Let’s talk in the morning”. There, it is not bad at all to sleep on that…because you both know you are willing to work on it and you still love each other despite the issue.

4. Being Emotionally Unavailable

When you are in a relationship, you need to be constantly emotionally available. You need to be involved emotionally because that is how you can connect with your partner. If you are always indifferent to what he/she says or feels, you make your partner feel unimportant. This pushes your partner away from you and don’t be surprised if one day, you discover they have moved on with someone else because you weren’t there all the time or you were there physically but you were unavailable emotionally. Sometimes, we become emotionally unavailable when we have a lot of things going on in our life. Work becomes a priority and we start to miss “family or couple traditions”. Or we are going through some difficult stuff and we don’t know how to cope and so we push others away because we don’t want to be vulnerable. Or you somehow lost the spark and stopped caring altogether. Whatever the case is, emotional unavailability is a recipe for disaster.

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5. Not Listening to Your Partner

When your partner requests you to do something like throwing the trash or fixing the toilet or buying something at the store on your way home, and you said yes without really hearing what they said and so you ended up not doing any of those, it gets annoying over time if you keep doing it. Another example of not listening is when you argue and you always cut your partner off insisting that you are right and what they have to say doesn’t matter. We are all guilty of not listening at times but if you constantly dismiss your partner, you are on the path to ruining your relationship. When your partner has to say something, listen. When you learn how to listen, communication between you are your partner becomes more fluid and you understand each other better. If you want to be in tune together, you need to listen to each other.

6. Constant Nagging

For the record, women aren’t the only ones capable of nagging. Men can also be naggers especially men who want to be in control of everything. If you have the tendency to nag and find faults in your partner, stop it. There are other ways to make your partner do what you asked of them and nagging is not one of them. For one, positive reinforcement is effective. Even if it seemed easier to confront your partner about coming home late or always forgetting to put the toilet seat down, don’t. Instead, use positive scripting and tell him how much you missed the times you share dinner together or how much you appreciate it whenever he remembers to put the toilet seat down (even if it only happened once in a blue moon). Positive reinforcement emphasizes love and not anger. This way you have a higher chance of making your partner change their bad habits slowly (by being more conscious of what they do and how it affects you) instead of them getting defensive and temperamental because of your nagging.

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7. Acting Suspicious and Being Jealous

You probably have read a ton of articles about relationship red flags and signs that your partner may be cheating on you, it is no surprise, after all you are a suspicious person. Whenever you see your partner being busy with his/her phone, you immediately suspect that he/she is cheating. When you see a nice comment from a girl in his social media account, you immediately get jealous and asks your partner to un-friend that person or you block the girl if you have access to your partner’s social media account. I’ve met this kind of people before and they are exhausting, really. They want to know their partner’s passwords and if their partner refuses, they will start to think that they are hiding something. This attitude is not healthy. It shows how insecure you are in yourself and in your relationship.

It is okay to be jealous sometimes because you are afraid to lose the person and a bit of jealousy is acceptable. What is not normal is demanding to know everything like passwords, the names of people your partner interacts with, having someone spy on your partner and sneaking in your partner’s belongings to find something and not allowing your partner to go to social gatherings without you with him. Being extremely possessive and unreasonably jealous and suspicious is incredibly annoying and before you know it, your relationship has ended. Give your partner space and respect his/her privacy. Trust in your partner. I get it, once you have been cheated on, it becomes difficult to trust fully again. But unless you really have strong evidence of him cheating on you, give yourself and your partner a break and breathe.

8. Bringing Up Past Mistakes Over and Over Again

Whenever an argument comes up, you like to keep enumerating the past mistakes your partner did to prove a point. Not only is it exhausting, it is also very unhealthy. If you resolve your issues, you need to realize that you start with a clean slate. You have to forgive and forget. It is not always easy to forget what they did in the past but if you keep bringing that up, you will never get anywhere. Even if your partner is trying hard to do better, if you keep bringing up the past mistakes on their face, they will eventually stop trying and just go back to their old ways since you do not see them trying anyway. Another reason why you should avoid bringing up past mistakes is it actually evokes resentment. People make mistakes and it is a fact we can never run from. If you keep reliving the past, you can’t move on and you can’t forgive. If you can’t forgive then there is no point for you to keep being in that relationship. It will only be toxic for you and your partner and the relationship will go nowhere. Finally, bringing up the past deviate both of you from discussing what the real problem is. You may think it may be connected with what happened in the past, but more often than not, the issue you should be dealing with is something right in front of you, at present. If you fail to address the real issue right now, then you will not get the issue resolved. Don’t dwell in the past. Instead, deal with what you have at present.

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9. Foregoing Intimacy and Compliments

Sometimes, being together for so long becomes a little bit too boring for others that they lose their intimacy eventually. Once intimacy is gone, the couple will start to drift apart. No matter how busy your life gets, always find time to cuddle, be alone and share an intimate dinner or go out on a date. You should hold on to your intimate moments, that way you never lose the “spark”.

Compliment each other and work on your romance regularly. It can be in a form of getting her flowers for no reason at all, or cooking something nice or his/her favorite meal, or giving your partner a massage. Even simple things like that can keep the intimacy going. Don’t forget to say, “I love you”, “thank you”, and “I’m sorry”. These words go a long way…

10. Forgetting to Take Care of Yourself

When you are in a long relationship, somehow your looks become insignificant to your partner, heck, you’ve seen each other’s worst look in the morning when you wake up and smelled each other’s fart. It is so easy to understand why a lot of people stop caring about their looks when they are happily in a relationship. However, this should not be a reason for you to stop taking care of yourself. You still need to go out there and work out so you keep fit. You shouldn’t always lie on the couch eating junk foods while enjoying movie marathon nights. You shouldn’t go out with your jogging pants and messy hair. DO not take yourself for granted just because you believe your partner will love you even if you gain weight or even if you stopped looking good. Keep yourself fit, dress appropriately whenever you go somewhere, eat and drink in moderation, treat yourself to a good pampering massage or hair treatment, wear something nice and style your hair. It may seem difficult when you have kids to take care of, but it is important to look and feel good about yourself. Try not to neglect yourself while taking care of your partner and kids. Not only does it keep the romantic flame going, but it also makes you feel good inside out.

 

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

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