Category Archives: Throwback Thursdays

Throwback Thursday! Dirty Dancing with The Stars

I wrote this last year when I was particularly pleased with the choice of contestants.

usmagazine.com

(09/17/16) To be honest, I’ve never watched an episode, but then again, when has having only half-assed knowledge of anything stopped me from making fun of it? I was first going to write one of my Pop Culture Commando posts where I hit on several trending pop culture topics, but…

usmagazine.com

usmagazine.com

But then protesters stormed the DWTS stage during a taping to protest the participation of Olympic swimmer Ryan Lochte, who is more famous for drunkenly vandalizing a gas station bathroom and lying about it than he is for anything else. As much as I’d like to mock Ryan Lochte some more, I have to say, really protesters? Ryan Lochte? This is what your life has come to? You’re apparently OK with racism, terrorism, Trump and Hillary, Brexit, and human trafficking, but Ryan Lochte lying about kicking in a mini-mart bathroom door has put you over the edge? 

bismarcktribune.com

bismarcktribune.com

Like I said, I was just going to hit on several pop culture topics today, but then I read the cast list for this seasons DWTS and my jaw dropped. Maureen McCormick (Marcia Brady) and Vanilla Ice! Are you kidding me? That is kitschy television gold right there! And Ryan Lochte? And about a dozen people I may never had heard of, including Laurie Hernandez who “burst onto the Senior Elite gymnastics scene in 2016…”  First of all, I had no idea there was a Senior Elite gymnastics scene! I’m imagining a scene like the opening of Fame where the group of kids are dancing in the street, except it’s old ladies with walkers slowly trying to do a somersault on the ground without breaking a hip. What does Senior Elite gymnastics scene even mean? Was she best at Jazzercise at her local gym? Before Laurie Hernandez finds me and kicks my ass, I will say that she is definitely not a geriatric and is attractive enough to distract me from my Maureen McCormick love for the few minutes she’s on the screen. Here’s a picture of Laurie:

She does not look very senior does she?

She does not look very senior does she?

Marcia, Marcia Marcia! That’s obviously what DWTS is all about this year. I don’t know how many of you in other countries are aware of The Brady Bunch, but when I was just a lad too young to know manly things, I did know that Marcia Brady was smokin’ hot. Had things turned out differently and the show had hired me instead of Robbie Rist to play Cousin Oliver, Marcia and I might be married right now. And, if I were to be into dudes my man-crush would be Vanilla Ice. And DWTS has put him in the cast too!

Picture credit: sodahead.com

Here is where I’d like to add some Phil to DWTS: What if DWTS wasn’t a show about celebs pairing up with professional dance instructors to compete? What if it was celebs pairing up with each other with no professional instruction at all? How hilarious would it be to see these idiots stumble and fumble through a waltz like the rest of us drunk at a wedding reception? Even better would be to get the celebs drunk before they dance! Obviously, the pinnacle of the show this year would be if Vanilla Ice sprains an ankle and they tab a certain humor blogger as his replacement to dance with Maureen. I would SO do the Dirty Dancing scene where she jumps and I hold her over my head.

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Go ahead, picture that but with me and Marcia Brady…Nobody puts Philly in a corner.

Have a great Thursday everyone! ~Phil

Throwback Thursday! It’s the End of The World…again

In honor of the giant Perseid Meteor Shower that’s happening Saturday night, I thought it might be helpful if I reminded people that if those meteors hit the planet, it could be lights out for the human race. Enjoy this classic Phil Factor from last year that addresses this very issue.

Don’t worry. I’ll save us all. According to some crazy ‘scientists’ and conspiracy theorists the world is going to end in about two to six weeks. It’s nice that they gave us a window isn’t it? Usually when crackpots are predicting our demise there’s a specific hard stop date. Now, because of the six week window we can procrastinate.  For instance, right now I don’t own a single device with a working keyboard, so here I sit holding a tablet with one hand and typing away with on the virtual keyboard on the screen with one finger from the other hand. It’s super annoying. If I thought for a second that I’d have to do this for the next year or two, I would go right out and buy a new laptop. Since the world is going to end, why bother, right? If in six or seven weeks we find out that the doomsayers were wrong, then I’ll deal with the situation.

end

Here’s how they say that the world is going to end this time: Apparently every twenty-six to twenty-seven million years the Earth has had an “extinction event”. Apparently we’re due for one in the next 2-6 weeks. An extinction “event”? That sounds like something that would be on pay per view doesn’t it? Some half-assed scientist from somewhere kind of implied that there’s another planet, Planet X or Planet 9 it’s being called,  in our solar system whose orbit around the sun is so huge that it only comes close to Earth once every 26 or 27 million years. Don’t worry though, it’s not going to hit us. The problem is that Planet X, in it’s extended orbit, passes through a meteor field and in doing so, it’s gravity pulls many of the meteors with it as it continues in it’s orbit. When Planet X is closest to Earth, we will get completely shelled into oblivion by the meteors.

Apocalypse-Public-Domain-300x300

So, the question is, if there is only 2-6 weeks left, what would you do? I don’t want to hear anyone say they wouldn’t pay bills or clean their house. And yes, of course you’d see family and friends. Get creative! This is the ultimate time to pull out that bucket list and get to work.

Me? What would I do? First I would attend a Donald Trump rally, walk up to him on the podium, and punch him in the nose. He’d appreciate that. He loves inciting violence. Then I want to travel to see the 7 wonders of the world, or at least the ones I haven’t seen yet. I’d skydive. Then, if we are going to be pummeled by meteors, I want to be sitting in a hot tub with a glass of wine when it happens.

rickspringfield_songsforendofworld

I think the fact that I just put that Rick Springfield picture on my blog should be seen as a sign of the apocalypse. I know contemplating the end of the world is kind of a bummer, so I’ll give you your happy ending right now. It’s not going to happen. I guarantee it. In fact, I will take credit for it not happening. As a candidate for President, or Sexiest Man Alive, whichever comes first, I vow to you, Phil Factor readers and denizens of planet Earth, that I will make sure the planet doesn’t end in 6 weeks. Will you get that guarantee from Donald, Hillary, or Matthew McConaughey? I doubt it.

So in the comments, what are you going to do in the next six weeks just in case I’m wrong? Have a great Thursday! (there might not be many more!) Phil

#Throwback Thursday! Who Let The Dogs Out?

This post is a throwback from a very interesting day in my life ten years ago. It came up because Michael Vick was in the news again today as there has been some public backlash to his university inducting him into their sports Hall of Fame. Those of you in the United States will no doubt remember the 2007 news story of the professional football player who ran a dog fighting ring.

(August 27, 2007) So I get sent to Richmond, Virginia for a two week training to prepare me for my new job. I’ve been here since the 19th. This morning I walked out of my hotel room and right into the middle of biggest news story of the day. I went down to the second floor where we have breakfast and start our training at 8 a.m. As I get down there another employee says, “Did you hear the rumor that Michael Vick is staying here? It’s probably just an urban myth.” I agreed, although I’m in a fairly nice hotel only three blocks from the Richmond courthouse.

At 9:30 during a break in training I went up to my room to get something. As I came out of my room an older gentleman in a suit exited the elevator in front of me and opened the door of the room next to mine. As he did so I heard the voice of an African-American man before the door closed. I went downstairs only to return a few minutes later after the wheels in my head started to turn. As I returned three men in suits exited the room next to mine and headed towards the elevator and I overheard one say, “Court should take about an hour.” After this I observe a hotel employee talking on a walkie-talkie, using the phrase “Room____ is a VIP room for today.” Now the light bulb went on over my head! I went downstairs and went back to my training.

About two hours later we got another break and as I exited the conference room a steady stream of men with cameras and microphones began to hurry past me towards the conference room across the hall from mine. So I got into the line. It was the Michael Vick press conference. As I walked to the line filing into the press conference I passed George Thorogood, the singer, talking to one of my co-workers. He was as curious as the rest of us. In addition to the press, spectators began to file into the hotel lobby. Some had religious shirts encouraging Michael Vick to repent. A family with young children came in carrying signs saying “We Love you” A co-worker of mine began to almost shout at the children, “You love him? How can you say that? He hung dogs!”

So me, Michael Vick, George Thorogood, and hordes of media were all here today. Needless to say, I had to answer a lot of questions about my blog.

TBT! Could Healthy, Organic Foods Be Killing You? Probably.

(Sept. 6, 2014) The answer is of course! If you hit anyone hard enough with a cantaloupe it would probably kill them. The question is are health foods killing you slowly and insidiously the way health food advocates claim that all those so called “unhealthy” foods are?

squashsquares

See that picture? Notice the smiling cartoon children? Of course they’re cartoon children! You can’t get real children to smile about squash for breakfast! I’m calling Child Protective Services on anyone who buys this for their kids.

A clinical study that I would do if I had the time would show that healthy, organic foods are killing us little by little, emotionally and maybe physically. In an article I found online anthropologist Rachel Caspari said that by examining Neanderthal dental records, her team established that 130,000 years ago, ‘no-one survived past 30. At least I think that’s what she was saying. I didn’t want to read further in case she presented some alleged facts that wouldn’t support my point.

And what is my point? My point is that 130,000 years ago nobody was frying stuff, nobody was adding antibiotics to anything and nobody was giving cows steroids, and guess what? They didn’t live past 30. So back when all we ate was organic foods nobody lived very long. Then when we started adding additives, preservatives and trans fats around 1900 or so the average human lifespan in many developed countries has extended to 80 or better.

See that picture? “Chickenless” nuggets? Just knowing they exist made my soul die a little bit. Take a moment to imagine a life where you wake up, grab a cup of Fair Trade, Organically Grown Coffee, pour yourself a bowl of Banana Squash Squares for breakfast and then, after a long, hard day of work, you come home to a dinner of “Chickenless” nuggets made from textured wheat protein. Maybe later with a glass of organic wine you’ll munch on some flax seeds. Did any of you feel happy when you imagined that scenario? No! Of course not. Health food is bad for your soul. Now picture swinging by Starbucks in the morning to grab a brownie and a tall Mocha Cookie Crumble Frappuccino. Then for lunch you grab a juicy burger and fries. When you return home maybe you eat a little healthy by having some nice salmon, but when you settle down later you top the day off with a couple chocolate chip cookies. How did you feel when you thought about that day? Much better right? So called “bad” food is good for your soul.

Also, if nuggets were to forever be chicken-less, would the chicken population explode and civilized areas would be overrun by chickens running around without having their heads cut off? That’s the apocalypse scenario I’m worried about. Zombie chickens!

Picture credit: play.google.com

Picture credit: play.google.com

So, in summary, if you eat too much “healthy” food you won’t live as long or feel as happy, and you would cause us to be overrun by chickens. Is that what you want?

So what are your favorite indulgent foods that make you feel better at the end of a rough day? What are the worst healthy foods you’ve ever seen or eaten? As always, if you enjoy #ThePhilFactor feel free to share by hitting the Facebook, Twitter, or re-blog button below. Have a great weekend! ~Phil

Throwback Thursday! The President Might Kill Me

(Feb. 9, 2013) He’s probably not trying to kill me right now, but he might. And he could, and it would be legal. I’m sure President Obama wouldn’t be the first to think about killing me, but he’s probably the first that could do it legally by remote control plane. Earlier this week the Obama administration re-affirmed a Bush era policy that gives the President the right to unilaterally decide to kill someone that might be a threat to the country in the future.  If you need more factual information than I’ll ever provide you can read about it here: http://www.cnn.com/2013/02/07/us/drones-classified-document/index.html

Sure my little Barack Obama jokes on my blog may seem cute, but what if Barry gets his panties in a bunch and decides that I’m trying to lead an uprising? I won’t debate the pros or cons of the policy, but I will say as a “guy” that it is a seriously awesome policy. We get to sit home playing Call of Duty while Barack by virtue of his job gets to play it for real. Part of the policy leaked to the public this week indicated that Barack Obama could use drone planes to assassinate anyone he thought might be a threat to U.S. security. Drone planes! Seriously, how cool is that? I wonder if he has a Playstation controller in his desk drawer that he takes out.

Now if he’s picking off al-Queda operatives I’m cool with that. But what if he gets some bad info? Or worse yet, what if somewhere out there some terrorist has the same name as me? Sure, the chances of that are fairly small, but it could happen. How can I rest easy knowing that Barack could be scrolling through the online White Pages and click on the wrong Phil Taylor when he’s targeting the drone? Or what if Barack decides to take a night off, gets all liquored up, checks Michelle’s browser history and finds that she’s been visiting my blog just a little too often? That is exactly when we need a little bit of the old checks and balances system.

I’m pretty sure that my ADT security system won’t be much help if a drone flies in my front door and tries to drop a smart bomb in my pants. It won’t matter where I am if Barry decides that me or my blog are a threat to the country. I’m pretty sure that if Dominos can find me in 30 minutes or less the Air Force can GPS the hell out of my cell phone and find me no matter where I am.

I’d just like to say a big hello to all the wonderful CIA and FBI operatives reading this today. Welcome to The Phil Factor! Think about this: the CIA and FBI monitor “internet chatter” to find threats to U.S. security. I assume that they probably have some internet filter that grabs onto anything with certain keywords they’ve programmed it to look for. In the course of this blog I’ve used the words President Obama, kill, smart bomb, al-Queda, threat and Michelle.

In the event that I’m killed by a drone plane or I mysteriously “disappear” please keep #ThePhilFactor spirit alive by hitting the Facebook Like or Share buttons. Also, I’m still on my quest to have my novel White Picket Prisons gross more than the $264 that Christian Slater’s movie Playback did, so if you haven’t, please buy my book for your Kindle, Nook, or iPad for only $2.99. You can also keep up with all my writing hijinks including contests by following my Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/pages/Phil-Taylor/331876066920144

Btw, this is me talking in present time. Not part of the Throwback post anymore. I don’t care who any of you voted for. Just please don’t make President Trump aware of this policy. If he knew that he could use drones to kill anyone at any time…

Have a great Thursday! ~Phil

TBT! The Clown Whisperer

(Aug. 7, 2007) Yesterday started out normally enough and then I saw the first clown. Yes, I said the first clown. There is no circus in town. There was no parade yesterday. But there he was, in front of the guitar store waiting for a ride. He sat on the bench and carefully arranged his clown suitcase and his other clown accoutrements in front of him as he waited. I became self-conscious that he might notice me staring even though I was watching him in my rear view mirror. He appeared to look in my direction, right at my rear view mirror and into my soul. A chill crept across my heart. I looked down for a moment, fearful that he was returning my gaze and I’d suddenly be mesmerized by his piercing stare. Then when I looked up again he was gone. It was so sudden that I wasn’t certain he’d ever been there. There was no car pulling away. No trail of endless brightly colored handkerchiefs as he walked away. Just nothing. He was…gone.

 
Later in the day I was driving home from running some errands and as I stopped at a traffic light I looked at the car turning left, crossing the intersection in front of me. What I saw looking back at me was unbelieveable. Two clowns in a car. Yep, only two. But they were clowns in full makeup looking at me as they passed. “WTF,” I thought. And then they were gone, just like the other one.
Why? Why are all these clowns showing up? What is the meaning? Why are they following me? As far as omens go, this can’t be a good one. Randomly seeing three clowns in one day with no circus or parade going on? That is effing weird. Enjoy your coulrophobia! Have a great Thursday! ~Phil

 

 

Throwback Thursday! The Rolling Stones Are Liars: My Class Reunion

(07/27/13)  Of course this doesn’t apply to me and all my classmates who are attending our reunion this weekend.  The high school reunion. That American institution where we renew friendships, reminisce, and catch up. We remember who we were and we talk about who we’ve become. Last night I had a very nice time talking with many, many old friends.

Back to my title. The Rolling Stones are big fat liars. Mick, Keith, Ron and Charlie. Every one a liar. Pants on fire. The whole nine yards. What did they lie about? They lied about time. Time is SO not on our side. Judging from how haggard The Rolling Stones look, time isn’t on their side either. Especially Keith.

I know where you think I’m going with this, but you’re wrong. Yeah, sorry about that. I’m not going to bemoan how the years have changed my classmates and I. If anything, I was pleasantly surprised by how good everyone looked. My old friends are happy and healthy and doing well. At least the ones that attended our reunion.

reunion

In addition to attending reunion activities I also went back to the neighborhood of my childhood. I’ve only been there a few times in the last twenty years. Everywhere I looked there were ghosts. If I looked at a street corner I could see the younger versions of my friends and I goofing around and I could hear the echoes of thirty year old conversations about inane topics. Walking by house after house, memories of incidents and adventures came to life in my minds eye as if not a day had passed.

The most startling revelation however is that apparently since I grew up I’ve become a giant. The parents of my childhood friends are smaller and shorter than I remember them. As my friend and I walked the streets it was amazing how much the houses had shrunk and now look old and run down a bit.  The walk around the block which seemed so long  as kids is now barely long enough to be considered much of a walk at all.

Street Sign

I know that all these things are illusions. People age and the neighborhood that was a whole world to us as kids suddenly appears small and old when I return to it from the larger world I’ve explored since I left home. Damn it Mick Jagger, you promised that time was on my side. I blinked and suddenly that naive, wide eyed boy from a small town turned into an adult with a mortgage and acid reflux. I guess more appropriately, this weekend illustrated to me the truth in the title of that Thomas Wolfe novel; You Can’t Go Home Again. I tried and although my home and neighborhood are not what they once were, I’ve enjoyed meeting high school friends again who all seem to be better versions of the kids I knew. Here’s to old friends.

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As always, if you like what you read at #ThePhilFactor please hit the Facebook share button, especially my high school friends that might be reading this. It was great to see you all again. And thank you to Cindy for all the pictures you’ve posted to Facebook. I’m sorry I couldn’t include pictures of everyone that was there. Have a great Thursday! ~Phil