50-Year-Old Man Reveals The Struggles Of Being A ‘Sugar Daddy’

“She was the most dangerous person I think I ever met.”

Whether you’re on your third failed marriage or you simply never got around to tying the knot, you may find your 50s a romantic rut. Too old for Tinder, too young to forget about dating. All your mates happily (and boringly) hitched.

All hope is not lost, however. We live in a modern world. Anything is possible. You just have to pitch yourself to the right agency. As one man recently revealed to Refinery 29 on Medium, you can have a lot of fun trying. But, as he also pointed out, it’s a lot more challenging than you’d think – especially when the perception is that the one with the money has all the power – which, he claims, is not always the case.

New York-based founder and CEO of a global software company, the man, who chose to remain anonymous, told Refinery 29 journalist Jessica Chou even though his net worth was north of $50 million, it’s been hard to get into conventional dating since his divorce 3.5 years ago because he travels a lot.

“I’m 50 years old but I probably look 38. I have the mentality of someone in their 20s because I just love to have fun. I jump out of planes, you know? I’m just one of those guys.”

He also couldn’t get into conventional dating because: “My schedule just prohibited it. When I dated conventionally, it always followed the same pattern: Meet a girl, get to know them, they like the vibe. Then I start my crazy travel schedule and there’s an awful lot of stress and texting. When are you coming back? Where are you?”

“So I thought okay, what if I financially support someone and when I’m here, I have the company of someone I enjoy. It seemed like the perfect solution,” he told Refinery 29.

Another attraction, he says, was he “thought it was the only way to meet women who have not been tainted by life,” explaining, “I just found that as women and men age, they get more tainted by their experiences. They create within themselves a negative bias as a standard operating procedure.”

“I went on many dates with women in their 40s, and what I found consistent between all of them was they were immediately looking to find out how I was going to hurt them, even from date one.”

So he decided to try and date younger women, recounting his experiences – and struggles – with three of them to Refinery 29. Here’s his experience with each one.

The Upfront One

“The first woman was the upfront woman,” Anonymous Daddy told Refinery 29. “I met her for a drink and she was very open about the fact that as long as there was some chemistry, she would meet with me and sleep with me for money. Unfortunately, that’s not really who I am. I need more of an emotional connection with someone, even though it might sound weird in that environment.”

The Girl Next Door

“The next woman was someone I would call a ‘girl next door.’ She probably shouldn’t be on the website, and she wants an emotional connection, but she needs financial assistance. So I dated her for four to five months,” Anonymous Daddy said. “After two months she said, I don’t want money anymore, I just really enjoy getting to know you. It really told me she wasn’t looking for a long-term monetary benefit, and that you can have a real chemistry-laden relationship with someone.”

Great, right? Wrong. Or at least – it didn’t last. Why? Over the next two months, the age difference was slammed in our face. I remember I went out to brunch with her and her friends, and someone was whispering, you know, ‘Whose dad is that?’ It didn’t really impact me, but I saw the look on her face. When we talked about it later, she said she wasn’t necessarily prepared for that. So we decided to remain friends.”

The Mercenary

“The third woman I call the ‘mercenary,’ and she was the most dangerous person I think I ever met,” Anonymous Daddy said. “She scared the shit out of me. She would say anything to make you think she loved you. She lied about not having a boyfriend, not living with him, got all the money, gifts, trips, and plane tickets, and when her boyfriend finally threw her out, she came crawling to me.”

“She ended up moving in with me for a while, and then I got set her up in an apartment. Once, I got really ill, and I told her what was going on, and I said, hey, look we need to have a real relationship, or this isn’t going to work. And to this day, I haven’t heard back.”

The man then added, “I spent $200,000 while dating on the site, and about 90 percent of that was on the third woman. I bought her a lot of jewelry. I’d buy her a ring, she would lose the ring or say it got stolen, and I’d buy her another ring to replace the ring. Then her rent, it was $3,500, $3,600 (£2,700-£2,800), plus a security deposit. I know. It was sort of like, hey dude, what are you doing?”

 

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Karate Lessons

Philadelphia, PA – 1975-1976

I was picked on and bullied in Fel’s Junior High School. I never experienced this in grade school. It just didn’t happen there. Maybe all the disfunction in families comes to a head when kids reach the age of puberty, but I just don’t know.

It was hell for me for much of the whole 3 years I spent at Fel’s Junior High school. It felt more like a juvenile detention center than any sort of educational facility. When I think back on my life my memories are pretty sharp and I have great recall and detail. But when I think back to Fel’s, there isn’t much info. It’s as if during those formative years my mind blocked out much of that horrific pain to save me from mental illness later in life.

There was a show on TV at that time called Kung Fu. My parents used to watch it and my dad loved it. I remember watching a few episodes and although I never saw the pilot, I knew what the show was about. It seemed that this Chinese/American guy wanders around the American west and gets into these different situations. Normally there would be some bad guys who would get their butts kicked by the main character each week.

I thought it was all very cool, and Kung Fu and Karate were hot back in the 70s. There were lots of movies about the subject. Even the Green Hornet had a chauffeur named Kato that could do karate. It was Bruce Lee, who sadly died back in 1973, but he had already established himself as a bonafide star in his short time in show biz. He was the real deal.

I figured if I learned kung fu or karate, I could defend myself from all of the animals at school and in my neighborhood. I remember I had gotten a book about Judo and was reading about some simple moves, and I guess maybe I put it to my parents one day that I’d like to take karate lessons. It just seemed practical, cool and I liked the idea and philosophy behind it all. You have this amazing fighting skill but you only use it for the forces of good. You never pick a fight, you only use it to defend yourself and your loved ones. That’s like some superhero stuff right there. I figured that would be perfect for me since I loved comic books and the dudes that were in them defending the world against evil.

So, my parents signed me up for karate lessons. I remember it was $10 a week and back then and my father thinking that it was kind of expensive.

They sent me off to American Karate Studios in Rockledge Pa. That sounds far away, but it was just a bus ride away from my house. I would go there I think a few times a week. For my dad’s money, I would get 2 group classes and 1 private lesson per week.

I would finish school and then walk north on Oakley street to Martin’s Mill Road and hop on the N bus. Which I think either doesn’t exist anymore or they’ve simply changed the name of the bus route. I googled it looking for any old photos online and came up with this:

https://www.yellowpages.com/philadelphia-pa/mip/american-karate-studios-464769411

https://businessfinder.pennlive.com/1977929/American-Karate-Studios-Philadelphia-PA

Could that place still be open?

I would carry a plastic bag that had my Gi in it. That’s the white outfit the karate guys wear. I thought it was super cool and felt like a real kung fu dude when I wore it. It really allows the freedom of movement when you’re doing your moves.

Here’s a couple of old photos my sister dug out of me wearing my karate Gi doing some moves. Future Kung Fu Dragon!

A photo on the wall of my mother on her wedding day hangs on the wall behind me. Check out that ancient vacuum cleaner in the corner!

Anyway, I remember there being a series of belts you had to earn to move up to be a kung fu master.

Everybody started out as a white belt. That’s the beginner level Then you moved on to an orange belt. Then a purple belt. Followed by blue and then green. There were 3 degrees of brown, and 8 degrees of black.

The dream was obviously to become a black belt karate master. That would take years and years to achieve and I didn’t see myself ever getting there. But if I could learn enough moves, maybe I could defend myself against the minions in the neighborhood who picked on me.

There were a couple of kids that were already members and they wore some of the higher level belts. There was a little guy who had a green belt and he was really fast and had killer moves. I figured if that kid could do it, so could I. There was also this girl who was older than me who had a purple belt. She was really cute and always wore her hair back in a thick braid. The only way I ever saw her was with her hair back and in her Gi. I kind of had a thing for her, but I basically didn’t exist in her world and would never have a chance to get to know her. At least in some way, I was invisible to her… like a ninja!

The group classes were rigorous and filled with a bunch of skinny kids like me. We would exercise the moves that had taught us, like snap kicks and punches. It was fun to play/spar with the other boys because it was like we were fighting but no one really hit anyone else.

Once the instructor made us put a smaller kid on our shoulders and we had to do a series of front snap kicks. So while there is this kid sitting upon your shoulders you had to kick to the knee, midsection, and face to an imaginary adversary in front of you. This all had to be done without putting your kicking leg back down. It felt like some real next-level kung fu stuff!

Another time during the exercise and strength training portion of the class, we had to all lie on our backs on the mat and lift our feet up 6 inches off the floor. This was a great way to strengthen the muscles in our core. But the crazy thing was, they would make you hold it up until it was nearly unbearable. Then the instructor would walk through us and step on our stomachs. It didn’t hurt because our stomach muscles were so tense but it was wild. You wouldn’t think that would work but it did. He stepped on everybody. No pain. Future kung fu dragon!

My favorite part of attending karate lessons was the private lesson with my teacher. That’s where you learned all of the new moves and skills associated with your belt level. It was really cool. Like, if someone grabbed you by the lapels there were a series of moves you could perform to immobilize and destroy your opponent in seconds. I love this!

There’s also a dance you learn along with your training. It’s called a kata. It’s a series of punches and kicks you do in a formation and you have to memorize it and be able to perform it. It included many of the basic techniques that you were being taught for your belt level.

(I just got up from my desk to see if I still remembered any of that kata. Guess what? I went right into the routine like it was yesterday. Wow!)

Thank you, Sensei!

I even ordered some cool patches for my jacket. I had a round patch on the back of my jacket with the American Karate Studios logo on it. I also had a tiger and a dragon patch on each one of my sleeves. I was going to be like Kwai Chang Cain in the Kung Fu show on TV!

By the time the semester ended and I was supposed to go to the shore for the Summer I took my test, with one of the owners, (who was a black belt) and I passed! I earned my orange belt!

Of course, my dad said, “They better give you that belt after all the money I gave them for those lessons!”

I should have drop-kicked him.

Karate lessons were a welcome little repose in my tortured life back then. I think it really helped me. I never used any kung fu moves on anybody, but it did feel good learning something new, get some exercise, and be with other kids like myself.

Thank you American Karate Studios and to all of the staff who were kind to me and taught me some cool fighting skills!

 

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

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

Tales of Rock – Craziest Rock and Heavy Metal TRUE Stories

As much as you want to believe, most rumors about famous rockers are completely FALSE. But considering the lifestyle, it’s not surprising that almost every rock star has a few rumors surrounding them. But, again, most of these simply AREN’T true.

However, don’t despair, because, in the jumble of countless made-up or exaggerated tales out there, some of these rock star rumors are actually true! Hopefully, this 100%, actual, we’re-not-lying-at-all, real-life true stories about rock giants will give you something to think about.

Keith Moon and Mama Cass Died in the Same Apartment

Keith-Moon-Mama-Cass-Died-Same-Apartment

Rock stars are taken from us too young way too often, and it just so happens that two brilliant musicians died in the same apartment. On September 7, 1978, Keith Moon of The Who overdosed on a sedative in an apartment he rented from musician Harry Nilsson; on June 29, 1974, Mama Cass of The Mamas and The Papas died of heart failure (not of choking on a sandwich as the rumor goes) in the very same apartment.  Flat #12 at 9 Curzon Square, Mayfair, London, England.

Axl Rose Recorded Himself Having Sex for Rocket Queen

Axl-Rose-Adriana-Smith-Guns-and-Roses-Scandal

There’s a rumor that, on the Guns N Roses song “Rocket Queen,” which closes out the band’s debut album Appetite for Destruction, you can hear Axl Rose having sex with a woman who may be Adriana Smith, a 19-year-old stripper and drummer Steve Adler’s girlfriend. According to Steve Thompson, an engineer on Appetite, “Axl wanted some pornographic sounds on ‘Rocket Queen,’ so he brought a girl in and they had sex in the studio. We wound up recording about 30 minutes of sex noises. If you listen to the break on Rocket Queen it’s in there.”

Do you think Adler cared? According to Smith, Adler “fucking freaked out” when he discovered what happened. “I ended up drinking and using drugs over this for a really long time because I had this extreme shame and guilt and stuff,” she admitted to Rolling Stone.

Ozzy Osborne Snorts Ants and Will Apparently Bite the Head Off Anything

Yes, Ozzy, old news perhaps but we’re not going to have someone say hey, WTF, you’re not going to mention the Prince of Darkness?

Ozzy-Osbourne-With-Nikki-Sixx-Snort-Ants-Motley-Crue

You could do a whole list of true Ozzy Osborne stories, but this true rumor is particularly hard to believe. While on tour with Motley Crue, Osborne allegedly got into a one-up-the-other contest with Nikki Sixx that ended with Ozzy snorting a line of ants.

Ozzy-Osbourne-Bite-Head-Off-Dove

We’ve all heard the story of Ozzy Osborne biting the head off of a live bat while on stage, but that wasn’t the first time that Ozzy decapitated a flying friend. Apparently, when first meeting with Columbia Records, Sharon Osborne told Ozzy that he would make an impression on the executives if he released two doves in the office. Instead of letting them go, Ozzy grabbed one and bit its head off in front of the executives. I’m sure he definitely made an impression.

Steven Tyler Adopted a 14 year old Girl So He Could Date Her

Aerosmith-Steven-Tyler-Adopted-Daughter

Steven Tyler was known for having relationships with some of the most beautiful women of their day, but one of his most substantial relationships arose from much different beginnings. In 1975, Tyler somehow managed to have custody of a 14-year-old groupie signed over to him from her parents so they could live together. They were together for three years, during which time she drank, used drugs, and kept up with the wild rock star. They split when she was 18, partly due to the strain that an abortion put on their relationship. (I love Aerosmith’s music in the 70s but, dude… you were a filthy drugged-out savage back then.)

Van Halen Really Didn’t Want Any Brown M&Ms in Their Dressing Room

Van-Halen-Band-Cheeseburgers

Some people use this story as an example of all the prima donnas in rock music, and others use it to show that rock stars aren’t quite as hardcore as society thinks they are, and still others simply can’t believe it’s true. But Van Halen really would not allow any brown M&Ms in their dressing rooms before a show. But it’s not for any of the reasons listed above: in fact, it was a safety concern. Van Halen had extensive contract and safety guidelines, so in order to make sure that the venue had followed all of their safety requests, they buried a line in the contract about the candy. If there were brown M&Ms in their dressing room, it proved that the venue had not done their job.

Led Zeppelin Defiled a Groupie with a “Snapper”

Led-Zeppelin

On July 17, 1969, Led Zeppelin was staying at Seattle’s famous Edgewater Inn, and from their balcony, they could fish in Seattle’s Puget Sound. So the story goes that after a few days of fishing, and a few days of rocking, the Zep had a raucous party at their hotel room. While there, a few bandmates stuck some of the fish that they caught into a groupie’s um… sensitive areas. There are many versions of this story that differ on the particulars, but it is safe to assume that something fishy happened that night.

 

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

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11 Things That Attract A Younger Woman To An Older Man

Have you ever been attracted to an older man? Suddenly your friend’s father or his/her older brother or even your college professor seems like a forbidden fruit you want to indulge in. When you see Milind Soman, you can’t stop drooling over this silver fox and his mature personality. Young woman-older man relationships are common nowadays, especially among celebrities. From George Clooney and Amal Clooney, Hillary Burton and Dave Morgan, Ryan Reynolds and Blake Lively to Beyonce and Jay-Z, they all have been in marriages with a huge age difference. So, what attracts a younger woman to an older man? Let’s find out.

According to a study conducted by St. Mary’s University’s (Halifax), Sara Skentelbery, and Darren Fowler, women who date older men are looking for father figures. There’s a possibility that they were neglected by their fathers as children and now they are looking for attention from older men. The study also says that older men come with financial security that women often look for and when older men go for younger women they could be looking to reproduce at an older age. Whatever the reason maybe we will look into what really attracts a younger woman to an older man.

So why would a younger woman choose an older man? What do younger women actually look for in older men? Are they just sexually attracted to older men or it is something more? The attraction between older men and younger women sets some obvious sparks which are hard to resist. Sometimes it’s just sexual attraction while there are times that it turns out into something more meaningful. Whether or not the relationship is meaningful or sexual, purely depends on compatibility and differs from person to person. Here are 11 things that attract a younger woman to an older man.

When you actually fall in love, age is just a number.

1. They are more responsible and mature

We all agree that men act like grown-up kids or are as a man child. They run away from responsibilities and maturity is something you can’t expect from them. Many times, women find men of their age to lack a sense of responsibility. Women get tired of doing all the work and seek someone who is responsible and will look after them, instead of vice versa. In the long run, married men become lazy and women feel that older men would still be able to understand their problems because of their maturity levels.

Women mature faster than men and seek someone to match their level of maturity. Older men are more responsible which make them ideal for such women.

2. A sense of security

Older men provide a sense of security which is an essential criterion for a happy relationship. Most of the time, older men are more accomplished in life. As and when they reach heights in their career, they procure certain assets to secure their future. Women seek emotional and financial security, especially when they are thinking of settling down. Finding a man, who is able to make them feel both emotionally and financially secure, is something that draws them towards older men. They feel more comfortable knowing that their future is secure with such a person.

3. They are more experienced

Older men have played the field for a longer time and are more experienced in handling women. Their experience with women makes them adept at handling women. They can handle a woman’s mood swings and can also comfort them with the right words and actions. Younger women feel more comfortable with older men because they know all the right words to say when they feel pulled down. Older men make them feel emotionally secure.

Related Reading: He thought he’d have a good time with a younger woman, she asked him for a loan

4. The daddy issues

Women with daddy issues usually get easily attracted to older men. They want the next male figure to be someone who is the opposite of their father. Someone who understands her like her father didn’t. In the attempt of seeking someone unlike their father, younger women find older men as a replacement for their father. They seek a mentor, a friend, and someone to give them advice. In the process, these younger women get attracted to the wisdom and maturity of older men and fall for them.

Younger woman may be having daddy issues

5. They know what they want in life

If you ask a guy of your age what he wants in life, he will either stare at you with a blank expression or will give you some immature answer like, “Playing video games all my life” or “Nothing but sleep”. The same response from an older man will be about his ambitions, his career objectives, and his future prospects. Older men are driven by goals and direction which is what makes younger women get attracted to them. And then by the time you figure that you are married to a wrong person, it is too late. This is because women are usually more mature than men and they look for someone who would match their level of maturity.

6. Their mysterious aura

Sexy older men have this sense of mysteriousness around them. The frowns on their forehead or the seriousness in their face says that there’s something deeper to them and you can’t help but want to know more about their story. The lesser an older man talks about himself, the more you want to know about him. Blame it on chick flicks or rom-com movies, you feel as if he has a dreadful past and you want to act like the girl who revived him from it and brought happiness back into his life again.

Related Reading: 8 Relationship Problems Faced By Couples With Huge Age Difference

7. They are more understanding

Older men are more understanding than younger men. They don’t fight over small issues and make a big deal about them. Older men are more patient and will try to find the root of the problem and resolve the issue rather than playing the blame game. Their conflict resolution skills are exceptional. They keep their calm and will try to understand you first before jumping to conclusions. Women find this attractive because they feel like older men understand their feelings, value their emotions, and know how to respect them.

Older men understand better

8. They aren’t afraid of marriage

Younger women eventually get tired of heartbreaks and look for settling down with someone who isn’t going to break their hearts anymore. Older men make the perfect match because at that time they are looking towards settling down with someone. They aren’t afraid of marriage and make such women feel secure and assure her that this is not going to end up like another fling of theirs. Younger women feel that finally, they aren’t going to suffer another heartache.

9. They make a good sugar daddy

Younger women get easily attracted to older men because sometimes all they are looking for is to be a sugar baby. Younger men and women like easy money and don’t mind dating older people for it. They want someone to pay their bills and give them a lifestyle they wouldn’t otherwise be able to afford. Some younger women want sugar daddies to give them expensive gifts that they can show off in front of others, something which would make them socially desirable and boost their ego. An older man would give them all these perks which she would otherwise not be able to afford.

Related Reading: 6 Bollywood Movies Where The Lead Characters Have Had A Huge Age Difference

10. They’re good in bed

If there’s one more thing older men have more experience in, it’s with women. Older men are more experienced in bed too and know how to satisfy their women. They understand s*x is not only for them but also for the women. There’s this chemistry between an older man and a younger woman that does wonders in bed too. It’s hard for the spark to go off when you’re dating an older man.

Older men are good in bed

11. The heart wants what it wants

Sometimes a younger woman dating an older man has nothing to do with his age. We say that love is blind and the heart wants what it wants. After all, there is no set age difference for a great marriage! Sometimes it’s just compatibility and understanding that just makes them click. Cupid can strike anywhere and at any time. It can bring two totally opposite people together, even if they have a huge age gap. For people whose age isn’t a factor, a huge age gap doesn’t make a difference.

Can an older man love a younger woman? How does it feel like dating older men? Dating an older man will make you feel that you’ve finally found someone who wants the same thing as you.

However, there are some important things that you need to think about. Will this person be able to handle your immaturity or will he treat you like a child? What are his plans for children? Where do you see your future with him? You need these questions answered as you don’t want to end up like Monica Geller who had to leave Richard because he didn’t want kids.

 

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

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?”

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“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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