Tag Archives: Christmas

All I Want For Christmas Is…

It’s the holidays! Time to agonize over whether or not you got your loved one the perfect gift. Guys, if you’re in a relationship, the right or wrong gift could make or break everything. No pressure. Beware-gift-card

Well? How did you do? Did you get the right gifts for your loved ones for Christmas or Hannukah? Or did you cause irreparable damage to the relationship? Most holiday gifting comes with the same angst of “Did I pick the right gift? Did my gift say too much? Or too little?” When I become President, or Sexiest Man Alive, whichever comes first, I’m going to pass a law.

The law will state that the correct gift is always…drumroll please…the gift card. I am in love with gift cards. I love them so much that for Christmas I want to buy a gift cards for gift cards to show them how much I love them. I would sleep with gift cards on the first date. In the checkout line it’s all I can do to restrain myself from buying gift cards for myself. I know I could buy the same stuff for myself with actual money, but isn’t having a gift card so much better? It feels like you’re getting stuff for free, even if you paid for the gift card.

Bought-a-gift-card..

I was in a large, big box hardware/lumber store last week and I came across the biggest gift card kiosk/endcap I have ever seen. As I rounded the end of the aisle and my eyes gazed upon the 8th Wonder of the World a great and pure light shone down from above and I heard a chorus of heavenly angels. It might have been a circular saw, but with that Mount Rushmore of gift cards in my sights it sure sounded like angels. It was so big that I’d need to summon an apron wearing lackey to get a ladder if I wanted a gift card from the top row. If that wall of gift cards was a chocolate river then you can call me Augustus Gloop.

I mean seriously, how can you go wrong with gift cards? If you know someone likes something and you buy them a gift card for it, they get exactly what they want. Or who doesn’t like going to a restaurant for free? “What is this?!!? A bill for my meal! Pishaw! Take that filthy thing away for I have a gift card!”  That is literally what’s going on in my head when I get to use a restaurant gift card. If I could put on a fur-lined red velvet robe and crown while I bellowed that to a waitress I think I could die a happy man.

To the detractors who would say, “Well giving a gift card shows that you didn’t put any thought into it.” Really? Even if you got a gift card for their favorite store? Yeah, your idea of buying clothes that are the wrong size is always so much more thoughtful. I love returning things or wearing some ill-fitting, hideous garment just so you can feel good about yourself for choosing such a “thoughtful gift.”

You know what? They even have gift cards for an amount of money. At first I didn’t understand this, thinking it was somewhat redundant, but now I understand the genius. A gift card for money is also thoughtful. You can use it like a credit card. It won’t bulk up your wallet or cause you to have to do any tedious counting of paper money. A gift card for money won’t cause you to receive 98 cents in change that you will then throw into your pocket, a jar or car cup holder never to be used. With a gift card the change stays right on it for you to use next time. The best thing about gift cards for money is that you can use them to buy other gift cards!

You know who has a great gift cards? Amazon and Barnes & Noble. They also have my books. I’m just sayin’. Have a great Thursday! ~Phil

The Curse of Being a ‘Christmas Baby’

Yes, today is my birthday. My parents told me that I spent my first Christmas in the hospital and was brought home in a Christmas stocking on December 26th. They told my older brother that it wasn’t Christmas Day until the 26th. And he believed it! What a maroon! He was the dumbest 3 year old ever.

My first baby picture! (pic credit to https://www.artstation.com/yoneyu Go check out her stuff)

That’s what I looked like more or less.  I bet that all of you must know someone that was a Christmas baby. And I would bet that you all said the same exact annoying thing when you found out that someone was born close to or on Christmas.

My parents took that picture of me with the Santa hat on my butt every year until I was 14. It got kinda awkward after age 10. As I was saying, there’s something that every person in the world says as soon as they find out that you’re a “Christmas baby.” I’m at the point where I’m sure they notice me visibly clenching my fists and rolling my eyes.

This is actually a current picture of me. My goatee is starting to look just like that. Ugh.

Ok, ok, I know that you’re saying, “C’mon Phil, stop dragging it out. What’s that super annoying phrase that you assume is a curse for all the Christmas babies?” This is a blog post that could’ve been a tweet, huh? Well, it’s my fecking birthday and I’ll write anything I want! Ok, here it is:

“Oh, you’re a Christmas baby! Do you lose out on gifts because your birthday is so close to Christmas? You probably get a lot of Birthday/Christmas combo presents, right?” 

I believe that I have heard some version of that question over 4000 times in my life.

Best version of A Christmas Carol EVER!

I have two weird little quirks that my parents saddled me with; one is them having had sex nine months before Christmas, which condemned me to a lifetime of hearing that stupid question. For the sake of Christmas babies everywhere, I’m going to quote Bill Murray as Frank Cross in Scrooged, “Would you please, for the love of god, and your own body!, stop the damn…” questions about our fecking birthday presents !!! 

That is all. I hope you all enjoy my birthday today!

~Phil

My Christmas Form Letter To Everyone

It’s that time of year again! The time for the year in review Christmas form letter. It’s always touching when our relatives treat us like customers. Typically these form letters take one of two directions. The first and most typical is the “What a wonderful year we had!”

“Dear Relative/friend, 2021 was a wonderful year for my family. I started a new job six figure job, and my wife did the research that resulted in the Covid vaccine. The kids are doing well. Johnny aced the S.A.T., didn’t miss a question! He’s now been accepted into a Ph.D program at Harvard even though he’s only 14. Susie was named Miss Junior America and will be touring the country speaking out against make-up companies testing lip gloss on kittens. The picture on the front of the card is the new Bentley we got after winning the lottery.

The best course of action the next time you see these relatives is a swift, stunning punch to the forehead that will cause them to spill nog all over their tacky sweaters. They deserve this because they are lying about how fantastic their life is, or if their life is really that great then the bruise on their forehead will remind them that life is tough and they shouldn’t get too cocky.

awkward1

The second kind of Christmas letter is my favorite. It’s the disaster letter. These are the people who make you feel so much better about yourself and your life.

“Hello everyone, it is with a heavy heart that we wish you Season’s Greetings. Sadly our twenty-seven year old cocker spaniel passed away from canine Covid last week. He was delicious.  In more upbeat news from our family it has been a year of triumphs! We’ve all had Covid twice and survived. In fact, scientists from the university are pretty sure that the Omicron variant began in our very own house! Can you believe it? And now it’s famous!

Also, little Johnny learned to poop indoors and that rash on Susie’s face cleared up. As soon as we get insurance we’ll get her lazy eye looked at. Home schooling is going well and they are both on track to graduate by the time they’re 21. We’re so proud! Once Trevor finds a job we’ll buy some train tickets and come visit!

The best course of action with these relatives is to tell them you’re moving and you’ll forward them the address as soon as you get settled.

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I would just like to note that none of the pictures in this post are from my family. If I were to write a Christmas form letter to anyone reading this it might read:

Thank you to anyone who has read The Phil Factor even once. It’s been a wonderful year thanks to all of you. Thank you to those who have read one of my books and those who clicked Like or shared my weekly Phil Factor as well as those that have shared their thoughts in my comments section. Regardless of what religion or holiday you may or may not be celebrating this season, thank you for every little click you’ve directed at me in some way. In the comments below, which Awkward Family Christmas photo makes you cringe the most?

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As always, Happy Wednesday, and if you enjoy #ThePhilFactor please feel free to share by hitting the Facebook or Twitter share buttons below.

The Riveting Plot of Every Hallmark Movie

Hi everybody! Remember me? Yes, I know I’ve posted very infrequently over the past two years, but guess what? I’m back baby doll! (The first person that can tell me what TV show that last line came from,  I will happily send you either a paperback or Kindle copy of one of my books. If you can name the episode I’ll send you two! Ahem, Mrs. Phil you are not eligible for this promotion).

I’m planning on being back at least once a week. I couldn’t let one of the oldest blogs in the world just fade away. Although I am back, this post is a holiday classic that deserves to see the light of day at this time of year. But wait, there’s more! I’ve updated it a little. In the first rendition of this post I made a sexist comment implying that only women enjoy the Hallmark Christmas movies. I have since been enlightened by some of the previous comments on this post and the fact that Hallmark stepped up their game this year and added an LGBTQ friendly holiday romantic movie. Kudos to Hallmark for their move towards inclusion.

Yes, it’s that time of year. “Christmas?” you say. No, Christmas is just a secondary annoyance. To all the people born with at least one romantic bone in their body and a high tolerance for mediocre acting, it’s the most wonderful time of the year, otherwise known as Hallmark Christmas movie time! Or as Lacey Chabert, Dean Cain and Candace Cameron Bure call it, “The only time we make any money.”

Being married to one of these Hallmark movie loving people, I’ve inadvertently seen several Hallmark Christmas movies and I couldn’t help but notice that each unique Hallmark Christmas movie has the exact same plot as every other Hallmark movie. To save you from having to watch the actual movies, here’s how it goes:

Guy or gal who left home several years ago and is very successful at some high falutin’ job in a big city somewhere comes back to their Smalltown, USA hometown for Thanksgiving or a funeral. Oh no! Their family’s business is failing! What? They need to stay longer than they planned. Maybe until Christmas! I can’t believe it. What are the chances of that?!!?

Successful and attractive returning guy or gal runs into the sister or brother of a friend they knew in high school. He or she “was just a kid back then” but now they’re “all grown up” and they’ve really blossomed into a hunk or a hottie. At first they may not like each other but everyone else can see the obvious chemistry. Despite the fact that they annoy each other, they have to work together to save the business, ranch, town  or whatever. There’s always something that needs saving.

Of course it will all inevitably lead to a playful snowball fight between the two in the town square. And they both realize they like each other and they kiss.

Guess what everyone, that’s the plot of every episode of The Gilmore Girls too. You’re welcome. I’ve just saved you the trouble of watching every single Hallmark movie this year. But you know what? I know you’re going to watch them. It’s as inevitable as that moment when the returning hometown hero says that “this is where I’ve wanted to be all along” as they hug their new love and gaze at the Christmas tree.  Cue Christmas music and fade out to credits.

Have a great Sunday and thanks for sharing this post anywhere on social media! ~Phil

The Plot of Every Hallmark Christmas Movie

Yes, it’s that time of year. “Christmas?” you say. No, Christmas is just a secondary annoyance. To all the people born with a uterus it’s the most wonderful time of the year, otherwise known as Hallmark Christmas movie time! Or as Lacey Chabert, Dean Cain and Candace Cameron Bure call it, “The only time we make any money.”

Being married to one of these Hallmark movie loving people, I’ve inadvertently seen several Hallmark Christmas movies and I couldn’t help but notice that each unique Hallmark Christmas movie has the exact same plot as every other Hallmark movie. To save you time watching the actual movies, here’s how it goes:

Guy or gal who left home several years ago and is very successful at some high falutin’ job in a big city somewhere comes back to their Smalltown, USA hometown for Thanksgiving or a funeral. Oh no! Their family’s business is failing! What? They need to stay longer than they planned. Maybe until Christmas! I can’t believe it. What are the chances of that?!!?

Successful and attractive returning guy or gal runs into the sister or brother of a friend they knew in high school. He or she “was just a kid back then” but now they’re “all grown up” and they’ve really blossomed into a hunk or a hottie. At first they may not like each other but everyone else can see the obvious chemistry. Despite the fact that they annoy each other, they have to work together to save the business, ranch, town  or whatever.

Of course it will all inevitably lead to a playful snowball fight between the two in the town square. And they both realize they like each other and they kiss.

Guess what everyone, that’s the plot of every episode of The Gilmore Girls too. You’re welcome. I’ve just saved you the trouble of watching every single Hallmark movie this year. But you know what? I know you’re going to watch them. It’s as inevitable as that moment when the returning hometown hero says that “this is where I’ve wanted to be all along” as they hug their new love and gaze at the Christmas tree.  Cue Christmas music and fade out to credits.

Have a great weekend! ~Phil

Merry Christmas to All…

If you celebrate the Christmas holiday, then Merry Christmas to you. If you don’t then I hope you have a wonderful and merry day as well. I just want to say thank you to all of you who have read my blog over the past year. You make my day with your comments. I look forward to seeing you all in the New Year as well. Thank you. ~Phil

The Ten Best Holiday Specials of All Time

Three years ago a network aired “It’s Your 50th Christmas Charlie Brown!” To be sure, the Peanuts Christmas special is a classic here in the States. What I’d like to see someone create is a special with all the Peanuts characters as 50 year olds. How weird would that be? Here are my choices for the Ten Best Holiday Specials of All Time. The Star Wars Holiday Special was mentioned in the comments a few times last year, but didn’t make the Top Ten only because I haven’t seen it. If you’re curious, it is on YouTube.  If you disagree with the list or have other choices please put them in the comments.

10. Rudolph’s Shiny New Year: This piece of crap has been played every year since 1976. I think I accidentally watched it once as a child and vowed to never watch it again. Thus far…mission accomplished. Rudolph should have been made into venison before this was made.

rudolph

9. A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving: Sure the idea of toast and popcorn sounds great, in theory. This is a good special but pales in comparison to The Peanut’s Halloween and Christmas specials.

Frosty

8. Frosty the Snowman: The best part of this special is the song. The acting is putrid and the plot is barely plausible. When this is on I’m rooting for a green Christmas.

Drummer

7. Little Drummer Boy: This is where the list starts to get good. Good song, good plot, great claymation and I think there are some talking animals. Plus, it all takes place in a desert where Frosty would never survive.

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6. Santa Clause is Comin’ To Town: Oh man! When I was a kid and the Winter Warlock first appeared I was terrified. I believe the phrase “chillin’ like a villain” was coined for him. Also a young Santa hooks up with a serious hottie of a wife.

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5. The Rugrats Chanukah Special: Technically it was an episode of the series, but all these years later I still remember it for actually explaining the meaning of Hanukkah to me better than any person ever had. It was entertaining and informative, just like The Phil Factor.

4. A Charlie Brown Christmas: Hey, I know you all love this one, but if The Peanuts get on the list twice they don’t get #1. The ice skating scene, the dancing scene, and Snoopy making the animal noises were all great. Lucy still should have punched Charlie Brown for bringing back that wretched tree.

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3. Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer: Romance, bromance, career conflict, monsters, The Island of Misfit Toys. This special had it all. Remember how scary it was when Yukon Cornelius rescued Rudolph and his family from Bumble the Abominable Snow Monster?

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2. Dr. Seuss’ How The Grinch Stole Christmas: Great song and great villian with a story of redemption. Who doesn’t love it when his heart grows and breaks the frame? My favorite scene is when his dog, Max, happily hops on the front of the sleigh expecting a ride.

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1. The Year Without a Santa Clause: This special didn’t need a Santa Claus. If you’ve got the Heat Miser and the Snow Miser in a sing off you win. I just wish one of them had done a mic drop. Hands down the best songs ever in a holiday special of any kind. Here’s the video of both songs. (please pardon the commercial at the start). Enjoy!

These are just the holiday specials that are populr in the States. If some of my British friends or anyone from anywhere else wants to chip in, I’d be happy to d an international edition. Fill up the comments! Happy Holidays of every kind to everyone! If you disagree with my list please add your suggestions in the comments. If you enjoy #ThePhilFactor please share by hitting the Facebook, Twitter or re-blog sharing buttons below. Have a great Tuesday! ~Phil

Merry Christmas and Thank You!

I want to sincerely thank each and every one of you who have visited my blog over the past year. Time is one of the most precious commodities there is and once you’ve spent it, you can’t get it back. Thank you for spending a little of yours reading my words. Also, thank you to those of you who spent money and time reading my book Time To Lie this year. Whether or not Christmas is your holiday, I hope you all have a great day and coming year!

iStockphoto.com/KonArt

Thank you! ~Phil

Fun With Search Terms! The Holiday Edition

Earlier this week Google released it’s list of the most popular search terms for 2017. Much to my surprise, I didn’t make their list, so I thought I’d one up them. Nothing makes me feel festive AF like getting a present that surprises me. With my psychic powers it’s hard to surprise me, but there’s one place where I find surprises every time: in the list of search terms that people put into Google that bring them to my blog. Here are the ten best from the last three months:

10. Real sexting conversations to read in Hindi: This phrase and those who search it are responsible for 50% of my blog views. Ever since I wrote THIS POST in March of 2015 it’s been non-stop. I just wish some of them would leave a comment or buy one of my books.

Charlie in happier times

9. Charles Manson sad: Well of course he’s sad. He died this year!

8. Doppelganger in fight club: I know I wouldn’t want to fight my own doppelganger. He’d know all my good moves with the nunchucks and whatnot!

7. Hate Oprah: Somehow this simple but true phrase brought some wayward soul to my blog where he or she hoped to find others that shared his or her disturbing obsession.

6. The sexy man alive 2017: If google saw fit to lead someone to me after they searched this, then it must be true.

5. Hurricane: Yes, The Phil Factor is the hurricane of blogs, which I guess means that it blows. Get it? Hurricane-blows?

4. ineedyouraddress.com/tophil: Apparently I have a stalker! I hope he or she didn’t find my address. I love you all, but sometimes I’m happy that you’re one the other side of a screen somewhere far far away.

3. The Voice Adam Levine porn stache: I’m not sure what’s more disturbing, that someone searched this, or that my blog was the answer. Actually it’s related to THIS HILARIOUS POST from 2013 when Adam Levine was named Sexiest Man Alive over me.

2. World Psychic Predictions: Yes, psychic predictions are a service I provide for the world once a year. Come back to this space on Dec. 30th for my psychic predictions for 2018.

1. horniestintheland.com: Some are born into greatness while others have it thrust upon them. The title Horniest in The Land is not as popular or prestigious as Sexiest Man Alive, but I hope to wear the crown proudly. I honestly have no idea if that’s a real website and I’m too afraid to see what it is.

Have a great Saturday! ~Phil

 

Throwback Thursday! My Christmas Form Letter To You

It’s that time of year again! The time for the year in review Christmas form letter. It’s always touching when our relatives treat us like customers. Typically these form letters take one of two directions. The first and most typical is the ‘What a wonderful year we had!’

“Dear ____________, 2016 was a wonderful year for my family. I started a new job six figure job, and my wife was promoted to president of her company. The kids are doing well. Johnny aced the S.A.T., didn’t miss a question! He’s now been accepted into a Ph.D program at Harvard even though he’s only 14. Susie was named Miss Junior America and will be touring the country speaking out against make up companies testing lip gloss on kittens. The picture on the front of the card is the new Bentley we got after winning the lottery.

The best course of action the next time you see these relatives is a swift, stunning punch to the forehead that will cause them to spill nog all over their tacky sweater and leave a mark on their forehead. They deserve this because either they are lying about how fantastic their life is, or if their life is that great then the bruise on their forehead will remind them that life is tough and they shouldn’t get too cocky.

awkward1

The second kind of Christmas letter is my favorite. It’s the disaster letter. These are the people who make you feel so much better about yourself and your life.

“Hello everyone, it is with a heavy heart that we wish you Season’s Greetings. Sadly our twenty-seven year old cocker spaniel passed away last week. He was delicious.  In more upbeat news from our family it has been a year of triumphs! Little Johnny learned to poop indoors and that rash on Susie’s face cleared up. As soon as Obamacare kicks in we’ll get her lazy eye looked at. Home schooling is going well and they both are on track to graduate by the time they’re 21. We’re so proud! Once Trevor finds a job we’ll buy some train tickets and come visit! The best course of action with these relatives is to tell them you’re moving and you’ll forward them the address as soon as you get settled.

awkward-family-holiday-cards-06

I would just like to note that none of the pictures in this post are from my family. If I were to write a form Christmas letter to anyone reading this it might read:

Thank you to anyone who has read The Phil Factor even once. It’s been an amazing year for me thanks to all of you. Thank you to those who have read one of my books and those who clicked Like or shared my weekly Phil Factor as well as those that have helped by giving of their knowledge. Regardless of what religion or holiday you may or may not be celebrating this season, thank you for every little click you’ve directed at me in some way.

awkward-christmas-family-photos--large-msg-135455988475

As always, Happy Thursday, and if you enjoy #ThePhilFactor please feel free to share by hitting the Facebook or Twitter share buttons below.