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Throwback Thursday! Cemetery of The Heart

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(Nov. 1, 2014) We all have a Cemetery of the Heart that we visit from time to time. It is a place that is unique and belongs to each of us alone. Sometimes we visit when it’s sunny and the birds are singing and at these times we are unaffected by the memories each marker represents, thankful that we are in a better place.

Other times we visit our Cemetery of the Heart when the weather is cloudy, cold, and stormy, perhaps mourning the loss of those happy memories that warmed our hearts in days gone by.We may walk down an aisle, a small, grassy path flanked on either side by those tiny markers that barely acknowledge a person’s passing, viewing the tombstones with varying levels of interest and angst. Some of the smaller stones, barely a marker really, may represent missed opportunities, brief connections with people which never came to fruition or doors we did not open when opportunity knocked. Most are relationships that perished in their infancy. We recognize the names on some of these stones and others we do not. Some are lovers, some are friends and some are strangers we may have met in passing.

In the next row over are tombstones of those loves which may have been ill-fated, but which still resonate poignantly in our memories. The path through this row of grave markers is slightly uphill, but we can still easily make the trek. The stones are tall and strong with the names and dates etched in them as they are forever etched in our hearts. Each one a small nick, or scratch, or crack in the surface of our hearts, which may have changed it ever so slightly, but which also gives our heart some of the strength and character which has brought us this far.

As we turn the corner of the gravel path there are only a few graves left to view. Up the long, steep hill at the far back of our Cemetery of the Heart are the monuments and mausoleums. It is inevitable. Once we enter our Cemetery of the Heart we are compelled to walk the entire path, even when it becomes steep and difficult. There is no way to go back and erase what we’ve carved on each tombstone. The monuments and mausoleums may be far fewer in number, but their size and importance dominates our view of the cemetery.

In some places we have erected enormous monuments to lost loves. Some of them stand so tall and broad that they block the sun, dooming the small flowers we have tried to plant since the monument was built. Some of us are so tired from pushing the heavy stones into place that we haven’t even tried to plant new flowers yet. We hope that in time some hardy plants will grow here naturally in the shade of these memories and with enough time perhaps they will grow tall enough to reach the sunlight with branches where birds will nest and sing again.

Next to our monuments we notice a mausoleum. Some of the crypts are labeled and we fondly pay homage to those who still hold a special place in our hearts, those we still wish to check in on from time to time to see that they are well. Finally, if we choose to look closely enough, we can see that the daylight from outside our mausoleum has crept through the doorway to reveal a few empty drawers at the back. At this realization we smile and leave the cemetery in peace, knowing that the storm will eventually pass.

This is an idea for a future novel. I hope you don’t mind the detour from my usual style of writing. I promise to return to my usual level of idiocy soon. As always, if you enjoy anything I write on #ThePhilFactor I’d love it if you shared by hitting the Facebook, Twitter, or re-blog button below. See you Saturday! ~Phil

19 Gates of Hell: A Book Review

If you enjoy Halloween and a good horror story, then this is the book for you. 19 Gates of Hell is a new anthology of, you guessed it, nineteen stories of horror. Each story is by a different author and each is a gripping, blood curdling tale of horror in the vein of some of the great classic horror writers like Poe and Lovecraft.

Marie Lanza

I was gifted a copy of this book by friend of The Phil Factor, radio personality, author and Queen of Zombies, Marie Lanza who is the only other person to have written a Top Ten list for The Phil Factor. Check out Marie’s website for more info on all of her books. For 19 Gates, Marie contributed the story Facing Death, which is, in my opinion, the cream of the crop.

Other world famous authors in this anthology include: R.L. Burwick Rich Restucci Sean DevilleJames Watts Frank Martin Alberto Pupo Jacob Floyd Byron Craft, and Titan Frey  

If you love horror, you can’t beat this anthology. Pick it up from Amazon  as an e-book or paperback and find your new favorite author.

Have a great Halloween! ~Phil

How I Will Spend My Lottery Winnings

The Mega Millions jackpot that will be drawn tonight is nearing one billion dollars. Obviously, I’m going to win. The only question is, what should I do with all that money?

1. Once I am worth a billion dollars I will immediately relax, which I haven’t done in years. I will quite possibly relax to the point that someone will call a medical examiner. The best part of that is that it’s free and after I’m done relaxing I’ll still have a billion dollars, which will make me feel very happy.

2. Watch the sun set. Watching the sun set over Lake Ontario is my favorite part of every summer weekend.  Watching the sun set sounds free, but not the way I’m going to do it. I will buy a plane and hire a pilot to fly around the world at the same speed as the Earth rotates so that I can watch the sun set for 24 hours straight. There would probably be champagne involved.  The plane and pilot will remain on call so that I can see a nice sunset anytime I choose.

3. Daylight savings time. It’s stupid, outdated, inconvenient and it’s time for it to end. With a billion dollars I’m pretty sure there’s a way I could “persuade” enough legislators to take care of this.

4. Automated asteroid detecting lasers on the moon. Need I say more?

5. Thanksgiving. We’ve all been doing it wrong for centuries now. Do you think that the pilgrims wanted to eat the dead carcass of the largest, ugliest bird in North America? Of course they didn’t. Remember when telephones were attached to the wall and we could only go as far as the cord allowed? Well once we found a way around that we moved on to cell phones. Guess what? We now have better food than dead turkeys so it’s time to move on. When I have 2 billion dollars we will start eating pizza on Thanksgiving. Now that’s a food worthy of a national holiday.

6.  A seat on the Supreme Court. Did you know that technically there’s nothing that says you have to be a lawyer or judge to be on the Supreme Court? Powdered wigs and black robes? Seriously how swag would that be? Yeah, I know the modern day judges don’t wear the powdered wigs, but I would.

How about in the comments section here everyone write one crazy thing they would do in the unlikely event that someone other than me wins the Mega Millions lottery tonight?

Rock You Like a Hurricane?

First, before you read this, know that I am not making fun of the devastation and those who are effected by this weeks hurricane. I’m making fun of those who report on hurricanes because many of them are truly idiots.

My body is burning, it starts to shout
Desire is coming, it breaks out loud
Lust is in cages till storm breaks loose
Just have to make it with someone I choose

Here I am
Rock you like a hurricane (Are you ready, baby?)
Here I am
Rock you like a hurricane

It’s pretty obvious to anyone that Scorpions, in a rock song with perhaps the greatest guitar riff intro ever, were not talking about an actual hurricane. And all this week, I’m not entirely sure that television meteorologists are talking about a hurricane. Any TV broadcaster talking about the hurricane seems inordinately aroused by this weather event. Much like their sex, lives this probably only happens to them a couple times a year. And I’m not entirely sure that they don’t like this better. I swear that yesterday when the camera came back from an on screen graphic I saw Chris Cuomo and Ginger Zee adjusting their clothes.

Watch this video of a broadcaster allegedly battling the hellacious winds to stay upright when two gentlemen stroll past in the background apparently having no trouble at all. My first major in college was broadcasting and I don’t remember any of the lectures including the phrase “fake stuff to seem more dramatic.”

The funny part is, you never see any of these broadcasters the rest of the year. It’s like every network has a closet where they keep a half dozen people captive just waiting for something catastrophic like this. While they’re all in that secret closet waiting for a “weather event,” I imagine them all practicing enunciating words like storm surge, hunker down, and Nor’easter.  Seriously, is “hunkering down” the only way to survive a hurricane?

And lastly, Twitter was full of people wondering why this storm wasn’t called Daniels, just so the reporters could say that “the east coast is getting blown by Stormy Daniels.” Hey, I don’t make the news, I just report it. Have a great Sunday and I hope all of you in the path of the storm are safe and well. ~Phil

TBT! The “I Love All Four Seasons” People

Get ready. This is coming

(Sept. 10, 2016) We’ve all been in this conversation:

Other Human: Boy it sure is hot today!

Me: Yeah, but I’ll take this over winter any day.

Other Human: Not me! I love all four seasons! The fall colors are beautiful, and there’s nothing better than curling up in front of the fire on a cold winter night. And the Spring! All the flowers are beautiful!

Me: (imagining myself punching Other Human in the face)  What are you, fecking Snow White? The other seasons suck. You’re dead to me.

I’m not sure, but I imagine Snow White as the ultimate optimist. Her step-mother tried to kill her and she just went and lived with dwarfs until a Prince came along. And she sang and whistled happy tunes while doing housework! She probably loved all four seasons. I’ve never once sang and whistled while shoveling three feet of snow from my driveway.

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“Oh the Fall is so beautiful. I love the colors!” Yeah, well you know what? The colors on my 50 inch HD TV are gorgeous and I don’t have to go outside and pick the colors up off my yard for two months while inhaling mold and allergens. That’s ok though, you go ahead and frolic in leaf piles.

My problem is that I’ve lived in the northeastern part of the United States for my entire life. The first half of my life was my parents fault. But since I was liberated from their tyrannical control, it’s all on me that I still live here. I’ve grown sick and tired of damp, cool, Falls, cold, snowy winters, and Springs that are like living in England. (Yeah, sorry England, I hate to break it to you, but your weather is not great.)

I’m all about being an optimist and understanding others perspectives, but in February of 2015 the average temperature for the entire month in my hometown was 12 degrees. And not toasty warm 12 degrees celsius, whatever that is. It was 12 degrees Fahrenheit which is the manly American way of measuring temperature. We had over 100 inches (254 centimeters) of snow for the entire winter. Snow that had to be removed from driveways and roads. Yeah, you “I love all four seasons” people, how much fun was that season?

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That picture above this is me every Spring until about June. Yes, I know that rain is good for nature and all, but seriously, how can you “I love the four seasons” people actually love Spring? Who enjoys going around being damp all the time?

Admit it, none of you  really love all the seasons. You know who says that? Idiots and people who live somewhere that doesn’t really have all four seasons. So as summer turns into Fall, consider yourselves warned that if you engage in a weather related conversation with me, it’s not going to end well.

Have a great Thursday! ~Phil

Top Ten Tuesday! The Top Ten Amish Sex Positions

I knew it. I knew you couldn’t resist the title. I can’t blame you. I’d click on this too. We all love the mysterious Amish and we all wonder what goes on behind closed doors, or is it closed barn doors? The Amish sure seem to have a lot of kids and I’m pretty sure they’re not getting them by cloning or in-vitro fertilization. The Amish make their kids the old fashioned way, or ways, ten to be exact. Consider this post the new Amish Kama Sutra. Enjoy the list you perverts!

THE TOP TEN AMISH SEX POSITIONS

10. The Butter Churn move

9. The Barn Raiser

8. Milk your own cow

7. The Downward Hog

6. The Lancaster

5. The Bonnet Comet

4. The Pennsylvania Dutch Oven

3. The Suspender Bender

2. The Guilty Quilty

1. The Horse & Buggy

Yes, I know you were hoping for different kinds of pictures, but that’s what the rest of the internet is for. If you thought this was funny, please feel free to share it with your equally perverted friends by hitting one of the social media sharing buttons below. Have a great Tuesday! ~Phil

Stupid Things I Read This Week

Tom Cruise is seven years older than Wilford Brimley was when he played a grandfather in Cocoon in 1985. There’s two things that tells me; 1) Scientology and Just For Men hair dye are preserving Tom Cruise like a canned ham. You know how some crazy, rich celebrities and athletes sleep in an oxygen chamber to stay young? I’m certain that Tom Cruise sleeps in an a float therapy tank full of potassium sorbate 2) Wilford Brimley was born 50 years old. Look at that mustache. It would take me 50 years to grow one like that. Also, is Wilford Brimley not the oldest name in the history of names? I’m pretty sure that Wilford was one of the apostles. (Fun fact: Me and Tom Cruise were born in the same hospital)

A Lake In Mars? Who Cares!

This is another news story that gets “scientists” excited but does the rest of the world no good. Apparently “scientists” have discovered there may be an underground lake in Mars. How does this help us? The idea of water on Mars allegedly may be indicative that there once was or is some form of life. As I learned from Star Trek, just because our version of life needs water to survive, it doesn’t mean that life in the rest of the universe is exactly the same. And how many billions of dollars did it cost “scientists” to find this ridiculous Mars lake? How about using those billions of dollars to fix problems on Earth, where we live? I bet if you took the money it took to find the Mars lake and used it to put every terrorist into an apartment with a Netflix subscription there would be no more terror attacks. Or you could use the money to pay off at least 60% of the women Donald Trump has had affairs with. Hey “scientists” if you want me to stop calling you “scientists” in quotes, then do something really useful.

Hot Cheetos on the Hot Seat

This was the headline I saw earlier this week: Teen Had To Have Gallbladder Removed, Hot Cheetos May Be To Blame : A 17 year old from Tennessee…  She was eating four bags a day of Hot Cheetos. She was bringing bags to school. WTF? How about parents? Did she have any of those? The headline should say Parents Let Child Eat Herself Into Surgery! And obviously the teen was not a rocket scientist. But she’s obviously smart enough to be a “scientist.” Hey, maybe she should drink some of that Mars water to offset the hot cheetos.

Have a great Saturday! ~Phil