Hey, kids, welcome to the Phile for a Monday. How are you? Ben Affleck and Jennifer Garner's divorce might not happen, but not because they're reconciling; it's because, on a relatable note, they've procrastinated to the point of (potentially) no return. Celebrities: they're just like us! Ben and Jen got married in 2005, separated in 2015, and officially filed for divorce last year. Though they're publicly leading separate lives... Ben has been dating "Saturday Night Live" producer Lindsay Shookus since 2017... they've also been dragging out the legal proceedings necessary to sever ties. The Blast obtained a recent document in which the Los Angeles Superior Court advised the actors that their case was still incomplete because the final judgment had not yet been filed and entered. The court explained in no uncertain terms that their case might be thrown out, saying, "If you fail to take the appropriate steps in your case, [we] may dismiss [it] for delay in prosecution." Don't get your hopes up for a glorious reunion, however. Sources apparently close to the former couple say that the divorce is close to being made official, but the cause of these ongoing legal delays is unclear. RIP Bennifer 2.0, 2005 - 2018 (?).
If you’ve ever dealt with an inconsiderate house guest or hosted rude relatives, you know how irritating it can be when someone disrespects your space. A "Bible group" who overran an Airbnb property they’d rented upped the ante when they trashed the place and refused to leave until the owner and his girlfriend confronted them. The Airbnb host's girlfriend, Mary Numair, documented the whole ordeal on Twitter... including security cam footage and photos to confirm her claims. Only four people total were supposed to rent the house, but about twenty-five showed up. Mary's boyfriend, Ben Newman, saw the horde of "Christians" on his Nest camera and called the man who'd booked the space, she explained on Twitter. When Ben pointed out that ~25 >>> 4, the contact said they'd stay for a "quick Bible study" and then leave. Out of the goodness of his heart, Ben acquiesced. But once he checked his CCTV camera and realized that even MORE people had arrived, he called Airbnb and filled them in on the situation. They pushed back and asked if Ben could accommodate the growing party, and when he said no they finally contacted the booker. When the company explained that six times the agreed-upon number of people in the rental wasn't kosher, the customer responded that a "verbal agreement" had been made ensuring 25 people could stay there, according to Mary. The non-twist? No such agreement existed. Airbnb finally told the guest that everyone needed to vacate the premises... but they did not go quietly. The group's "leader" reportedly put his pillow in the car and came back. Ben and Mary then personally showed up to get everyone out, as Airbnb had instructed them. When they arrived, no one demonstrated any urgency to vacate the house, or any respect for the space they'd overrun. Once everyone finally left, Ben and Mary discovered that they'd stolen all the toiletries, including shampoo, conditioner, and pricey body wash. Following this mind-blowing display of rudeness, Airbnb rectified the situation by reimbursing Ben for the toiletries and paying out the reservation fee... which the guests never paid after their messy mass exodus. Hundreds of Twitter users following the rage-inducing story had to know: was there any fallout? How's the rural property's delicate septic system?! Though no long-term damage was sustained in the ordeal, I have a feeling Mary and Ben won't be hosting anyone through Airbnb again anytime soon.
For whatever reason, breastfeeding in public is a hot-button issue. It seems like everyone has an opinion on when, where, and how mothers should be feeding their babies. Often times, women who breastfeed in public are ridiculed, shamed, or told to "cover up," as if the sight of a boob could scandalize everyone within a 5-mile radius. But there are women fighting the stigma around breastfeeding in public, and they are doing it in witty, hilarious, and badass ways. Facebook user Carol Lockwood shared this photo of her friend's daughter-in-law and her genius response to a man who asked her to 'cover up' while breastfeeding in the 90 degree heat...
Many people applauded the woman's clever response. "There is a time and a place for breastfeeding," wrote one commenter. "Whenever your baby is hungry and wherever you happen to be." Another said, "'Covering breasts while feeding is simply respectful of others'. Surely looking elsewhere whilst a mother FEEDS her child is the more respectful thing to do. No one asks you to eat a meal with a cloth over your head in the summer heat so why should an innocent child have to suffer. People should mind their own business. This society is all for bashing women for being a god damn woman. Covering up or not she’s doing an incredible thing. People aren’t gonna feed that baby with opinions." But not everyone was on board... "Sex and childbirth is natural but would you want to experience them in public with people looking? Cover your breast while feeding good grief. Your breast is for the baby not the rest of us to see," said one woman. "Give the flip a dance pole. Maybe she can earn a few bucks while she is nursing. She certainly has problems exposing herself to public at large," added another commenter. What do you think?
It's fairly common for people to use another demographic's experience as a bargaining chip during political discourse. Claiming you're defending the experience of someone else without ever listening to their perspective may seem well-meaning inside your head, but it often comes off deeply flippant. So, when The Times columnist Iain Martin tweeted about how burkas are disrespectful to deaf people (because they create difficulties for lip reading), people were none too happy.
Shortly after his tweet was posted, a handful of deaf people chimed in, requesting that he not deign to speak for them. He responded by claiming he wasn't intending to speak for them, which didn't go over well. Suffice it to say, his tweet and then subsequent refusal to listen to people from the actual deaf community got him fully dragged. His dragging truly reached a peak when the Oscar-winning actress Marlee Matlin quote-tweeted to call him a racist. Hopefully, the thread will teach Martin to abstain from speaking for full people groups in the future. As well as the rest of us watching.
In this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death, taxes, and ignorant tweets from Tomi Lahren. When she's not writing short stories about people doing cocaine off the street in San Francisco or calling the border patrol agents separating families "humanitarians," Toga Lockdown is writing her own version of American history. Her latest chapter is on the futility of marches and rallies.
That's right, you attention-seeking weenies! Why are you bothering to scream in the streets? It's not like the First Amendment of the Constitution made a point to affirm "the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances"!!! People on Twitter are pointing out that Tilly wouldn't be able to march to the voting booth if women hadn't marched before her. There are more effective ways to be an attention-seeker, like becoming a Fox News talking head! The take is extremely ignorant, and quite disrespectful to the many people who have suffered in the streets exercising their Constitutional rights. It's not just women and black people who have made change through "attention-seeking foolishness." This stupidity is getting boring, Tasha. Start Googling stuff.
Alright, instead of doing this blog thing I should be listening to...
Nah, maybe not. Did you ever have to explain a really stupid thing to an adult? This person did...
A few weeks ago when Trump was in England Londoners sure had some witty anti-Trump signs.
I like it. Believe it or not I suck at new technology, and baby boomers everywhere are the same. I mean sometimes they confuse texting for using a search engine. How? I am not certain. I mean, they are both things you type into...
Hahahaha. We’ve hit the midpoint of summer of 2018. A season so hot that Death Valley in California... one of the hottest places this side of Venus... just had its hottest month ever. And, guess what, 2019 will be even worse because of global change or climate warming or whatever. So, I've decided to hook you up with some deals that’ll help you stay cool from now until we get this ecological disaster sorted out. How about the original, undefeated beater of heat: the Snoopy snow cone machine?
What inspired America’s favorite beagle to get into the shave-ice business? No one knows, but no one’s questioning it, because this product has been a mainstay in every American home since the Carter Administration. You can get yours on Amazon for just $20. Alright, so, one of the best things about the Internet is you can look at porn so easily. The problem though is that you might decide to stop reading the Phile and go straight to porn. So I thought if I showed a porn pic here you might not leave the Phile and continue reading. But then I thought if you were at work or school you might get in trouble. So then I came up with a solution...
That's not me by the way. Haha. Now from the home office in Port Jefferson, New York, here is...
Top Phive Things Overheard At The Space Force Announcement
5. Space Force: 1) Is dumb, 2) Is illegal according to multiple treaties we wrote, 3) Is already within the Air Force's jurisdiction, 4) On the plus side, will probably allow Mar-A-Lago members to become the first humans to embezzle outside of earth's gravity.
4. Am I excited about Space Force? I'm over the moon.
3. He says "Space Force!"... I hear "let's throw money down the drain that could be spent replacing lead pipes, providing insurance for those without it, helping pay off insane levels of college debt, or addressing the threat of global climate change." Potato, potahto.
2. Here’s hoping Space Force finds a distant planet with a civilization that has quality medical care for all and excellent public schools and affordable housing and humane immigration policies and gun control and clean water.
And the number one thing overheard at the Space Force announcement is...
1. Can I get out of serving in the Space Force because of bone spurs or are they not an issue in zero gravity?
If you spot the Mindphuck let me know. Okay, so, you know we can't all be winners all the time. The road to self-actualization is filled with embarrassment and shade, and sometimes we have to bask in our own failure.
Hahaha. Okay, so, recently there has been a big controversy about who the new James Bond is gonna be. Well, there's one name that keeps coming up and a friend wanted to come on here and give his opinions. So, please welcome to the Phile for the very first time...
LETS TALK ABOUT IT!: James Bond is Wakandian now. I have seen people get massively upset about this way before we even had an actor announced. People need to get the hell over themselves because in what rule book does it say a black guy can't be Bond? Why because all the previous ones was white? So does that mean the next trilogy for Star Wars can't have a black main lead because all main protags was white? Everyone who has an issue with it can shut up, go to the nearest exit, and shut the door on the way out because until I have a better reason why the man can't do Bond then there isn't an issue! Mic drop.
The most successful pirate in history was a Chinese prostitute. Cheng I Sao had an unbeatable fleet with 80,000 sailors, which was bigger than most countries', navies, and the government eventually had to give up and offer her a truce. She retired with her loot, opened a gambling house, and later died, peacefully, a 69-year-old grandmother.
Margaret Kerry will be on the Phile in a few weeks.
Phact 1. Winston Churchill found so much enjoyment and relaxation in laying bricks that he even joined and paid dues in the Bricklayer’s Union. He even inquired in a letter “is there is a rule regulating the number of bricks which a man may lay a day?… and what are the restrictions on overtime?”
Phact 2. Eight of the top ten cities with the highest unemployment rates in America are in California.
Phact 3. Psilocybe tampanensis, a psychedelic mushroom species, was found once and never again in Tampa, Florida in 1977, and all of today’s widely circulating tampanensis mushrooms are the descendants of that original specimen.
Phact 4. Alien: Resurrection: Sigourney Weaver really did make that no look, over the shoulder basketball shot. It was one of the first takes as well and she wasn’t even supposed to make the shot. They were going to use CGI. That look of “oh wow” from everyone is 100% legit. Ron Perlman almost blew the take because he was so surprised.
Phact 5. Peter Tatchell, a British gay rights activist, attempted a citizen’s arrest on Zimbabwean president Robert Mugabe in 1999. Tatchell walked up to Mugabe’s motorcade, grabbed the stunned dictator by the arm, and stated calmly, “President Mugabe, you are under arrest for torture.”
Today's pheatured guest is a guitarist in the is an English-American rock band Foreigner, whose latest CD "Foreigner with the 21st Century Symphony Orchestra & Chorus" is available on iTunes, Amazon and Spotify. Please welcome to the Phile... Bruce Watson.
Me: Hey, Bruce, welcome to the Phile, sir. How are you?
Bruce: I'm doing great.
Me: Cool. Bruce, where are you from?
Bruce: Los Angeles, California.
Me: Apart from the last live CD with the 21st Century Symphony you guys released the two CD set "40" which has forty songs... pretty cool. When you do a show you can't possibly do all 40 songs... so, how do you guy's pick which songs to do?
Bruce: It all varies.
Me: You do full rock shows and some acoustic shows as well... how are those different apart from one being electric and the other being acoustic?
Bruce: As far as the acoustic shows we have some orchestral dates we play, which is another separate thing, but when we do the acoustic shows we often slip in some some major hit list stuff, it's fun, we get to introduce songs the band hasn't played in a long time. Songs the fans might have forgotten about and we put a different spin on them and do them acoustically. As far as electric stuff I think it's safe to say when fan's come they wanna hear the hits and we have no desire to disappoint them. It's a 90 minute set usually and it's all hits and a couple more in the bag that everyone would know so it's a very fortunate situation.
Me: Foreigner has had soooo many hits... and you can't possibly do them all in one show. So, do you do the same set every night or do you guys switch it up?
Bruce: There's definitely a set of core songs we do every night. It's about 85% of the set that is songs that we have to do. But what we did do last year and I'm not sure if we are gonna continue it this year is something that is fun... we chose a section of the set where where we let the audience chose... we give three songs that we would usually play and the audience would vote by sheer volume and select which song they want to hear. It wasn't rigged... we actually did the song they wanted to hear. That was fun for us because we didn't know what we were going to play, with the crew we wold watch the scramble and figure out what guitar is to be played. We might do something like that again to keep it fun and fresh.
Me: Bruce, you are not an original member of Foreigner... so before you were in the band were you a fan of the band?
Bruce: Most definitely. Age wise I'm right in the strike zone and so I know what it's like to be on both sides of that.
Me: So, what is it like to be in the band now?
Bruce: As a young guitar player I thought about the dreams I had, of course being Led Zeppelin or the Beatles, but to play with Foreigner and be that guy it's a great feeling. Not a great feeling that Mick wasn't there but musically for me to be able to fantasize with those songs, it was great.
Me: So, how did you get to be in the band in the first place, Bruce?
Bruce: Um, working backwards was led me into it was when Mick fell ill, the drummer at the time was Mark Schulman, who now played with Pink... it was an emergency situation and I have known Mark for quite awhile and had recently done some recording sessions with him, so I was sort of fresh in his brain. He really put me forward strongly and I really appreciate him doing that. It was really the result of his opinion that I got thrown into it. That's how I came into the band.
Me: What were you doing before you were in Foreigner?
Bruce: I was touring for years but I was doing mostly studio stuff for quite awhile since the early 90s. I just met a lot of musicians and got to play with some amazing musicians for years.
Me: I never seen Foreigner in concert, but read that the band had two guitars in it and now have three. I know when my dad was on the road with Lonesome Dave's Foghat Rod Price joined for a tour and Foghat then had three guitars so had to rearrange the songs. Did you guys have to do the same thing?
Bruce: Yeah, and I think 95% of it was done unspoken. I don't think Tom doesn't change his guitar parts very much, and when Mick's there which is the majority of the time I just come up with my own parts and play around in support, and just do what's right for the song. Three or more guitars at a time is one or two too many. I don't know how Foghat did it. I just played the song and stayed out of Mick's way. Of course he has been very gracious and gave me a lot of solo's. He doesn't try to sideline me, he wants me to be fully present.
Me: Do you think being a veteran guitar player helped?
Bruce: I think spending so much time in the studio probably helped me chose some parts that were appropriate. The job there is to play the right thing, not too much, just enough, so it became natural to me just to stay out the way.
Me: You sing as well, so did that help you get the Foreigner job? Are you comfortable with that?
Bruce: Honestly, I'm really comfortable. I love doing it, I love singing those great background vocals. There was definitely not a need for me because everyone else sings, and they definitely have it covered. I know it's helpful to have another voice in there. There's no samples, it's all human voices and we do a great job so it's fun to be a part of that.
Me: So, you did a lot of touring in the past before Foreigner?
Bruce: I've done enough of it to where it's just playing live. If I'm playing a club or a theater or whatever, whatever the size of the venue I still do what I do. I've done a little bit of touring here and there but I've never been in a band like this where I've been in this many years consecutively. I did maybe a summer here, maybe a year and a half, but I do love to be able to project great songs. It's a great feeling.
Me: So, your latest CD is "Foreigner With The 21st Century Symphony Orchestra & Chorus." What can you tell us about it?
Bruce: It's really cool and was recorded last year in Switzerland. We worked with Dave Eggar who arranged these great arrangements with a giant orchestra and huge choir. It's really cool, it's a full rock band but it's tastefully arranged and tastefully mixed.
Me: Any new studio album in the works?
Bruce: No new studio album to my knowledge.
Me: Well, you guys had enough hits. Haha. Has the band changed or improved since you have been in the band? Any changed you noticed?
Bruce: The business has been increasing since I've been in the band, it's been a steady climb since I have been in the band to the top. It's extraordinary.
Me: Bruce, thanks so much for being on the Phile. Continued success and I hope to see Foreigner in concert soon... I hope you stay with the band for a while. Take care and come back again soon.
Bruce: It's a pleasure, Jason, and maybe I will see you soon.
That about does it for this entry of the Phile. Thanks to my guests Cadence Hall and of course Bruce Watson. The Phile will be back next Sunday with Paul Fusco, creator and voice of ALF. Ha! Spread the word, not the turd. Don't let snakes and alligators bite you. Bye, love you, bye.
Not if it pleases me. No, you can't stop me, not if it pleases me. - Graham Parker