Category Archives: pop culture

Dear Donald Trump,

Dear Donald Trump,

I’m only using “Dear” in the most traditional sense, not because I have an affection for you, but because it is traditional and respectful to start a letter that way. Traditional and respectful are both things with which you seem unfamiliar. I have taken it upon myself to write this letter to you on behalf of the rest of the human race. Yes, I said the rest of the human race, as if we are separate from you. Your words and actions seem to indicate that you are very separate from us.

To borrow from George Bailey, on behalf of the human race, I’d like to say: Just remember this, Mr. Potter Trump, that this rabble you’re talking about, they do most of the working and paying and living and dying in this community country. Well, is it too much to have them work and pay and live and die in a couple of decent rooms and a bath? Anyway, my father didn’t think so. People were human beings to him, but to you, a warped, frustrated old man, they’re cattle. Well, in my book he died a much richer man than you’ll ever be.

Designating myself to represent the rest of the human race may seem arrogant on my part, but I assume that is a characteristic that you understand and respect. I know that you always think that you’re the smartest guy in the room, but the smartest guy in any room is never smarter than the rest of the room together. I’d like to see you get you’re hearing problem checked out. You’re an older man and you seem to have significant trouble hearing your advisers, your cabinet members, and the American people telling you to shut the eff up. Maybe if you aren’t good at listening, you’ll be good at reading. Maybe people will like this blog post so much that it gets retweeted to you. That’s a medium you seem to understand.

You seem fixated on North Korea and their crazy dictator right now. That’s valid. They pose a danger to the rest of the world if they start launching nuclear missiles. You and Kim Jong-Un are trading verbal nuclear missiles right now like two junior high bullies in a pissing contest. How about, for a change,  you be the adult in this one. With all your “fire and fury” and “Locked and loaded” comments, do you know who you sound like? You sound like Kim Jong-Un, a crazy, irrational dictator. In the words of President Teddy Roosevelt, “speak softly and carry a big stick.” Look, we’re the United States. Everyone knows we have the big stick. We have the worlds largest arsenal and the worlds largest military force. You have the big stick and everybody, including Kim Jong-Un knows it. Just shut the eff up and take care of the problem the way your cabinet and advisers, except your son-in law, tell you to.

As for your domestic agenda, what is it? Is it to reverse everything your predecessor did? That seems to be all you’re doing. Like Richard Gere’s character in Pretty Woman learned, if you want to be remembered, build something. If you just destroy without replacing you’ll have a hole. And people will regard you as one as well.

If you want to act like a dictator, go back to a reality TV show. In the real world, your act doesn’t work. Name one real life crazy dictator that had a reign that ended well? You know, if you don’t like this President job, you can resign. Nobody will think worse of you. It’s impossible to. If your ridiculous behavior continues, it’s possible the American people will say, to borrow a phrase from a clown I saw on TV, “You’re fired!”

Sincerely,

Phil and the human race.

I Think I’m Turning Japanese, I Really Think So

I’ve got your picture, I’ve got your picture

I’d like a million of them all round my cell
I want the doctor to take your picture
So I can look at you from inside as well.
You’ve got me turning up and turning down and turning in and turning ’round. I’m turning Japanese, I think I’m turning Japanese, I really think so. ~ The Vapors, 1980

I don’t think that I’m turning Japanese, but it’s possible that #ThePhilFactor is. Earlier this week my Music Monday post featuring the band #Babymetal went a little viral through some Twitter love from Japan. I’ve never had a huge Japanese following, but I figure that since I’m publishing a new book soon I might as well try to capitalize on my newfound audience. Thinking that I want to take advantage of the tidal wave of attention from Japan is entirely different than actually successfully doing so. For instance, I just committed a Godzilla sized faux pas in the last sentence by using the phrase ‘tidal wave’ in reference to Japan. They seem a little nervous when that phrase comes up.

In an effort to get up to speed with my new Japanese blog visitors I’m going to review everything I know about Japan in the hope that if I’m mistaken about any facts you’ll help straighten me out.

Things I Know About Japan: 

A girl heavy metal band named Babymetal is more popular than The Phil Factor: I’m sure you’re as surprised by this as I am. Seriously? Are you kidding me? I’m The Frickin Phil Factor! My blog is older than those snot nosed little punks. Quick survey: Who thinks I should rename my blog The Frickin Phil Factor?

Japan is an island nation: Of this I am fairly sure.

Godzilla (or Gojira for my Japanese friends) is the official mascot of Japan. Of this I am also fairly sure. In fact, most people mistakenly believe that in all those old Godzilla movies the giant lizard was attacking Tokyo. He was in fact attempting to protect it from Rhododendron, that flying three headed thing.

Slurping Loudly is considered polite: It is a way to show your host or hostess that you really like the meal.

Cuddle Cafe! In Japan there are Cuddle Cafes where you can pay money just to snuggle with a stranger that works there. I don’t see how that could possibly cause any problems.

Adult Men Get Adopted: 98% of adoptions in Japan are men between 20 and 30. The reason? If the owner of a business doesn’t have a son to keep the family name alive, an heir is adopted into the family. I may move to Japan just hoping to get adopted by the owner of Sony.

The Japanese Penis Festival: The Kanamara Matsuri is centered on a local penis-venerating shrine. The legend being that a jealous sharp-toothed demon hid inside the vagina of a young woman the demon fell in love with and bit off penises of two young men on their wedding nights. After that the woman sought help from a blacksmith, who fashioned an iron phallus to break the demon’s teeth, which led to the enshrinement of the item. (Description from Wikipedia) Aww…what a sweet story!

Mr. Miyagi from the Karate Kid movies is now the President. (By the way, next year Ralph Macchio and the guy that played his nemesis will reprise their roles as 50 year old dudes still holding a grudge in a YoutubeRed series)

Based on my extensive research, those are all the facts you need to know about Japan. In order to welcome my new friends to my blog and to improve U.S.-Japan relations I would like to translate a few useful phrases for them:

Half of us didn’t vote for Donald Trump: 私たちの半分はドナルドトランプに投票しなかった

The Frickin Phil Factor: フリッキンフィルファクター

Hello my Japanese friends! こんにちは私の日本の友達!

Real sexting conversation to read in Japanese: 日本語で読めるリアルなセックス会話  (this one is a throwback to another of my posts which has brought thousands of Hindi speaking people to my blog over the last two years)

Babymetal Loves ThePhilFactor.com : ベビーメタルはThePhilFactor.comを大好き

Yes world, you are welcome. The Frickin Phil Factor is once again bringing people together. Have a great Saturday! ~Phil フィル

Would You Like To Do A Guest Post Here?

As I mentioned a couple weeks ago, I’m in full book writing mode, which decreases my blog writing time a bit. As per your vote a few weeks ago, I’m looking to replace my Tuesday Top Ten lists with Guest Bloggers. I’ve had two great ones, Sick Christine and John Howell.  If you have a book to promote, or just want to promote yourself and your blog just say so in the comments.

Have you ever woke up, got out of bed and dragged a comb across your head,  then checked your blog stats? Yes, I’m sure we all do it. At 6 a.m. this morning I got up and checked for comments and what yesterdays stats were. (I love following my blog views throughout the day). Normally when I wake up there’s a very moderate number of overnight views. Today I woke up to what is usually a good, full days worth of viewing stats. Looking at what was getting so much attention, it turned out to be my Music Monday post this week. It’s a video of a Japanese girl trio who sings heavy metal songs, Babymetal, singing with Judas Priest lead singer Rob Halford. I titled it as The Strangest Thing I’ve Ever Seen on a Music Stage. Apparently #Babymetal is very popular because all my views came from Japan and Twitter. Yes, that’s right, #ThePhilFactor is now trending on Japanese Twitter.  If you haven’t seen the video, here it is. Rob Halford doesn’t even come on stage until the 7:40 mark.

For my new readers I’d like to say:

こんにちはBabymetalファン! Phil Factorへようこそ

I Bloody Love Chips!

The original quote, which I borrowed from the old British sitcom, Miranda, is actually “I bloody love crisps!” Unfortunately, for the purposes of this post, crisps just won’t do because I’m talking about chips, microchips, and those just aren’t good in dip. But apparently they might be good in your arm or neck or where ever!

My cat has a microchip in his neck so that if he ever gets lost and is returned to a shelter or vets office, they will know who he belongs to. In an article in The Independent, (which I obviously read religiously) a Swedish office that employs 400 people offered the opportunity to get microchipped to all of their workers for the purpose of gaining access to the office, using copy machines and buying stuff at the cafeteria. “We already interact with technology all the time,” says bio-hacker Hannes Sjoblad, the “chief disruption officer” at the office block. “Today it’s a bit messy—we need pin codes and passwords. Wouldn’t it be easy to just touch with your hand? That’s really intuitive.”

He does make it sound awfully tempting, doesn’t he? We already have smart watches that record our pulse, steps and sleep patterns and glucose monitoring contact lenses. Many people with certain diseases and medical conditions have technology implanted in their body. Some have entire artificial organs. Let’s face it, we started on the slippery slope to becoming cyborgs or androids a long time ago, so why not embrace it? Soon, after I start selling the Phil Factor microchip, you’ll just wave your hand over your device and it will take you right to #ThePhilFactor. How great would that be, right?

Let’s be honest, as a group we’ve fantasized about having the brains and strength of robots for a long time. Remember the 70’s TV show, The Six Million Dollar Man? “We can rebuild him. We have the technology…Better, stronger, faster”

I know a lot of you are saying,”Phil, this is crazy. None of us wants to be part machine or to have tracking chips in us like a dog.”  Well why the heck not? “Oh, the government will track us. They’ll know where we go and what we buy.”  Guess what folks, the ship sailed on that long ago. And the invasion of privacy argument is gone too. Hell, Netflix and Facebook know more about us than our own relatives!

A Wisconsin technology company, Three Square Market, (which sounds a little too close to Three Doors Down, who unbeknownst to them, have all been microchipped so I can track them for the purpose of avoiding their concerts) is a company that provides technology for break-room or micro markets, has over 50 employees who plan to have the devices implanted. The tiny chip, which uses RFID technology or Radio-Frequency Identification, can be implanted between the thumb and forefinger “within seconds,” according to a statement from the company.

You know what? I’d get microchipped if only to avoid having to remember or write down all the passwords that I need regularly. Seriously, who enjoys trying to remember twelve different passwords that combine upper case, lower case, haiku, Sanskrit and your mother’s maiden name and a special character? A special character? Like from a movie or TV? My drunk uncle is often referred to a special character but I don’t want him knowing my passwords to anything!

In last summer’s movie Suicide Squad, microchips were implanted in the necks of crazy prisoners recruited to go on a dangerous mission to save the world. They were told that if they tried to escape or revolt a button would be pushed and the microchip would explode and kill them. That seems useful if you want to parole someone from prison. Also, if I’m a parent of young kids I would find that idea very useful. The day before all the kids get vaccinations for mumps or something, show them that movie and Voila! They’ll never misbehave again!

It’s inevitable. We’re already halfway down that slippery slope, so let’s embrace it. Microchip implant party at The Phil Factor next week. Who’s coming?

Have a great weekend! ~Phil

 

Wordless Wednesday! Shark Week

For Shark Week I thought I’d share this pic I took about a month ago at the Toronto aquarium. Don’t forget, Sharknado 5 (click the link for a preview trailer) premiers in just 11 days on the SyFy network! Have a great Wednesday! ~ Phil

How Fidget Spinners Are Destroying Our Future 

You spin me right round, baby
Right round like a fidget spinner, baby
Right round round round
You spin me right round, baby
Right round like a fidget spinner, baby
Right round round round ~ partially borrowed from You Spin Me Round by Dead or Alive

Maybe it’s happened. Maybe unbeknownst to me, I’ve turned into a crotchety, cranky, cantankerous old man. I suppose the fact that I used the word ‘unbeknownst’ is probably a sign that I’m verging into the “Hey you kids! Get off of my lawn” phase of my life. Or maybe … millions of people are idiots. So as not to disrupt the consistent ‘brand‘ I’ve built here on #ThePhilFactor, I’m going to go with the millions of idiots theory. Are you one?

Are you one of the millions of idiots that have a “fidget spinner” because life is just too stressful and your hands and mind cant be idle to ponder the mysteries of the universe for even a minute?

For my readers from outside of North America, I don’t know if these are in your country yet, but fidget spinners are those little things that are in the top picture of this post. People just hold them between their thumb and forefinger and spin them. That’s it. That’s all they do. What does that accomplish? I have no idea. Allegedly they help relieve stress and boredom. WTF? Are you kidding me? What the hell happened to cell phones? Adults and kids all over the United States are buying these stupid little toys and carrying them with them everywhere.

Is this what our society has come to? Are we so accustomed to constant external stimulation that our minds are unable to cope with thirty seconds of boredom? I think that these idiotic things are representative of our society as a whole, and it’s not good. Not good at all.

But Phil“, you’re saying to yourself, “fidget spinners are just a harmless toy. How could they possibly be a bad thing for society?” First, thank you for saying my name when you speak in your head. I love that. Second, think about our lives before “smart phones.” When we were bored, we daydreamed, we reminisced, and we thought of stuff. The people who created Google and Amazon didn’t have fidget spinners or smart phones. They had a shit load of free time to think of stuff. How about the space program? You ask a twenty year old if they want to have a manned mission to Mars and they’d be like, “What? Why would I go to Mars when I can just look it up on my phone?”

Stephen King? Shakespeare? The Wright Brothers? Yup, they had no fidget spinners or smart phones. The people who invented smartphones had no smartphones or fidget spinners. Anything and everything great in our life was invented before cell phones and fidget spinners! Right now there are thousands of millenials taking jobs at Google and they’re skateboarding into work with fidget spinners in their pockets and the creative idiots that run the company are going to let them play with those stupid things all day. I predict the end of Google within two years. The Phil Factor, however, will still be going. You know why? That’s right, because I don’t have a fidget spinner. Tell me, has anything truly great, truly advancing human kind occurred since fidget spinners were invented? Bueller? Bueller? Yeah, I didn’t think so. Case closed.

You spin me right round, baby
Right round like a fidget spinner, baby
Right round round round

Now you’ve got that song stuck in your head. You’re welcome. Have a great Saturday! ~Phil

Psychic Phil Strikes Again!

I hate to say I told you so. OK, no I don’t. I love to say I told you so.

Remember my January 1st post My Psychic Predictions for 2017 ? If not feel free to click that link and read it. Go ahead. I’ll wait. ………..You back? Good. See? On January 1st of this year I predicted that Princess Kate would get pregnant again and the world will lose it’s collective minds when we find out it’s twins. The rumors are out there that it is twins. I’ve got the first half right. Time will tell if I nailed the landing.

Also just to update my other predictions at the halfway point in the year:

The world did not end, exactly as I predicted.

People will lose interest in the Kardashians: Who? Exactly!

The United Kingdom will try to #UnBrexit: The most recent election results were underwhelming for Prime Minister Theresa May, indicating that the public is not happy with her leadership. There is published speculation that England my try to reverse this colossal blunder. Sounds like Psychic Phil may have nailed this one too. BTW, #unBrexit is a hashtag on Twitter just as I predicted it would be 6 months ago. You’re welcome.

Kim Kardashian will fall for another: She’s still married to Kanye, but how long can this possibly go on? Apparently not for much longer according to this article from May which seems to indicate I got this prediction right too.

Donald Trump will resign from the Presidency: I predicted this weeks before he even took office. Doesn’t seem so far fetched now does it?

Celebrity Deaths: Not that I’m rooting to be right on these, but Betty White, Marvel Comics icon Stan Lee, and Queen Elizabeth. Rumors have been swirling about the Queen’s health…

Well? What do you think? It seems like my psychic predictions are all looking pretty good so far. Should I start a separate psychic predictions blog?

Have a great Friday!  ( I know you will. Well, not you. I was talking to her over on the left) ~Phil