Sunday, February 14, 2016

Pheaturing Kate Brown

Hello, kids, and welcome to the Phile for a Sunday and Happy Valentine's Day! When your girl says I don't want anything for Valentine's Day...means you better surprise me, fool. If two people love each other nothing is impossible... except deciding where to eat. Valentine's Day is the perfect time to reflect on all your horrible dating choices since last Valentine's Day. Sorry that right now there's a 4th grader who has 29 more Valentine's than you do. Rest assured that however crappy your Valentine's Day is, Instagram can make it look romantic.
Okay, let's start off with a story about a high school senior who bought a Valentine's Day carnation for all 834 girls in his school, even though he has a girlfriend. Starting as a freshman, Hayden Godfrey began his tradition of one-upping all the other dudes at school by anonymously sending flowers to dozens of girls as part of the school's Valentine's Day flower exchange, KUTV reported. This year, the Utah senior Godfrey... who has a girlfriend... outdid himself and bought 900 carnations so he could give one to each of the 834 girls at his school. It's an act of kindness reminiscent of Max's proposal in "Gilmore Girls." Yes, I have been reading up on the "Gilmore Girls" for personal reasons.
"So I did a thing today," he wrote on Facebook. "Today I passed out 900 carnations, one to every girl at SVHS and it was totally worth it. I don't think anything can compare to seeing every girl in your life holding a flower as they walk through the halls." Making the story even sweeter, Hayden spent $450 of his own money that he earned working as a cook, dishwasher, and grocery bagger, ABC reported. 20 of his friends helped him pass out the flowers and execute this rom-com style feat. The recipients loved Hayden's deed. "Thank you so much!! It quite literally made my life this week," Emily Earl commented on Facebook. Hayden's mom told ABC, "He wanted every girl to feel joy." Every layer of this story is more impossibly endearing than the last.
Forty-eight years ago, Tomas Yudai moved to Winnipeg, Canada, and after a lonely first week where he saw snow for the first time, looked up Filipino names in the phone book just to find someone to socialize with... and ended up finding his wife, Carrie. Millennials like to complain about how difficult it is to date on Tinder, but swiping right sure beats guessing who in the white pages might be from your country (the first few people he called turned out to be Portuguese). The CBC's Teghan Baudette interviewed the couple, who have a lot of lessons from their 46-year marriage that young people could use today. Eventually, someone picked up Tomas' cold calls: his future wife's roommate. Tomas must have had a suave phone game, because, as he recalls, "She says, 'Come over, you know, we're having a party.' So I said, 'Great,' you know, 'Thank you,' and I got the address." He forgot to get the time, however, so he showed up early to find Carrie coming out of the bathroom in a towel. Meet cute? Check. The party involved "a lot of single nurses and doctors," and according to Carrie, Tomas immediately "started flirting with all of the nurses." Tomas claims not to recall that, but to be fair, he also admits to not really noticing Carrie for a while, despite their introduction. According to him, she "didn't even register," which is the kind of thing you can only get away with saying after 46 years of marriage (he also declined to give an opinion on what he originally thought of her appearance). Nevertheless, he registered with her. Carrie was dating a doctor at the time and working as a nurse, as many Filipino women did. In fact, she points out, there were many more Filipino women in the city than men (the Philippines is one of the world's leading producer of nurses). Tomas, who had gotten his degree in economics and agriculture in California after growing up in the Philippines, was a catch (no word on what happened to that other doctor). She kept calling him and inviting Tomas out to parties, and eventually he got the hint. On Dec. 26th, 1967, they shared their first kiss. "Well, you know, there's one man for 25 women so you kiss him and that's it," explained Carrie, who admitted to being quite possessive and jealous at times of Tomas. Lock it down, girl. Fast-forward half a century, and what do they credit for their long marriage? Their individuality. They keep their own hobbies (gardening for Carrie, computers for Tomas) and sometimes they even travel separately. "We have a strong sense of" Tomas said before Carrie finished for him "who we are." "Yeah," Tomas continued, "who you are as an individual rather than us together."
Trolls are passing around an image pretending to be a promotion from Apple that promises to give your iPhone a "retro" look if you set your phone's clock back to 1970. To be fair, since there were no cell phones in 1970, you'll feel pretty retro when you suddenly no longer have one, either.

The image, and many trolls leaving comments across the Internet are claiming that if you set your phone's clock back to January 1st, 1970, your phone will get an exciting throwback theme. This ignores the fact that if you truly had a retro PC look, you'd suddenly have to learn basic programming just to access your texts from the command line. More importantly, it bricks your phone (makes it basically unusable) and you'll have to go to the Genius Bar to fix it, which won't be fun or free if your warranty is up. The reason this happens is that 1/1/1970 reads as a zero in UNIX (perhaps due to the chronology of when the computer language was invented). It's sort of like Jesus' birthday, but for computer language... and it was probably put in place by a skinny, long-haired dude with a beard. This brings back memories of how the world almost came to an end because 70s-era programmers only used two digits to express the year, resulting in the "Y2K" crisis when they suddenly realized that computers would think the year 2000 was 1900. Bank accounts would revert to zero, and planes would fall out of the sky, because there were no planes in 1900 (not really, but that would be a funny reason, right?). This affects all new iPhones from the iPhone 5S onwards, as well as newer iPads and iPods. Anyway, don't do this. Don't listen to images on the Internet. Unless I tell you to on the Phile.
Alanis Morissette is pregnant with her second child, and you, you, you, oughta know. Alanis Morissette revealed a few days ago that she's expecting her second child with husband Mario "Souleye" Treadway. The couple already has a 4-year-old son named Ever, because celebrities are required to give their children unique names. Each year, Alanis makes a short animated video to recap and reflect on the events in her life, and this year, she used the video as a chance to let everyone know that she's expecting. Maybe they can name this kid "After," so their children are Ever and After. Or they could name it "More." Whatever they choose, congrats to the happy family. Sounds like this was a planned pregnancy and not a result of her forgetting to take a jagged little pill.
Sometimes people need a little help from Google to find that perfect Valentine's Day gift, and Estately discovered that what they search for varies a great deal from state to state. By running "hundreds of possible gift-related search queries through Google Trends," Estately did their best to calculate the most popular gift queries by state. Some searches are wholesome, some are sexual, and some are surprising. Kentucky is really committed to couples tattoos, while Tennessee is on the hunt for cheap sex toys. Here's the map...

Looks like these states are getting romantic or sexual with the exception of Delaware, which searches for gift cards. No sex for you, Delaware. Iowa wins the WTF award with tandem bicycle, while South Dakota is keeping it repressed with JCPenney portraits. Shout-out to New Mexico for searching how to give a hickey. Alabama is keeping it classic and classy with British poetry, while Mississippians somehow still listen to mixtapes. Now that you know how weird South Dakota gets on the most romantic day of the year, go find out what all the other states Google when they're wondering about South Dakota.
Alright, so, with the Panters lost a week ago today they decided to change their logo, and the Phile has the exclusive.

Soft kitties, sacked kitties, matted balls of fur, crying kitties, pouting kitties, grrr, grrr, grrr! Haha. So, I was so excited thinking there was a Star Wars: The Force Awakens Blu-Ray was coming out today, and then I saw this...

Hahahaha. Daisy Ridley is so cute. Did you guys see this pic of her?

You're welcome, gentlemen. I loved the new Star Wars movie, but there's one scene that didn't make sense...

WTF, right? So, as it's the Phile's 10th anniversary I am showing you what people look like when they read the Phile. It's a stupid premise, but here you go...

What a cute couple, and they look impressed... or surprised. I am also showing you some pics showing why some candidates shouldn't pose with kids.

"Is that an exit? I'll never make it." I have to mention this... on Thursday's "Late Show With Stephen Colbert" they did this...

How freaking cool that was. Go to and get yourself a bottle of wine. Alright, and now from the home office in Port Jefferson, New York, here is...

Top Phive Candy Hearts For Modern Lovers
And the number one candy heart for modern lovers is...

Antonin Scalia
March 11th, 1936 — February 13th, 2016
The court has ruled 8-1 in favor of the plaintiff in the matter of Grim Reaper v. Antonin Scalia.

That's a really lame Mindphuck I have to admit. If you spot it, let me know. Here's a clue, it's a stretch. Hahaha. I'm so stupid. Okay, so, this is the 10th anniversary of the Phile and you would think in 2006 not much else happened. Well, a lot happened so I thought I'll show you with a new pheature called...

Walmart officially stops selling VHS tapes.

DVDs will last forever! Right? Right...?

Stacey Dash played Dionne in Clueless, but these days she's better recognized as that actress who was in Clueless and says questionable things on "Fox News." Dash's most recent claims were regards to the heated topic of the very white Oscar nominations. Take a deep breath before continuing, because it's a mess. Between Dash and interviewer Steve Doocy, there's enough absurd "Fox News" fodder to feast on for days. Stacey's comments that "if we don't want segregation, then we need to get rid of channels like BET" and that "there shouldn't be a Black History Month" because there's no White History Month have baffled a number of people. "The good news is there's attention brought to it now," Dash says about the lack of diversity in the Oscars nominations, shortly after calling the backlash against them "ludicrous." In between all that, Dash responded to the notion that the upper echelon of Hollywood is as white as a snow-covered mountain by saying, "That's not necessarily true, and if it is it needs to change." Given her all-over-the-place statements, there is a chance Dash has little to no idea what she's talking about.

Maya Angelou
Maya Angelou was an African-American author and poet whose collected works can be accessed by clicking on the #inspiration hashtag on Instagram.

The 45th book to be pheatured in the Phile's Book Club is...

Richard will be a guest on the Phile a week from today.

Today's guest is a singer-songwriter whose new single "Bring Me Doen Dixie" is available on iTunes. Please welcome to the Phile.. Kate Brown.

Me: Hello, Kate, welcome to the Phile. How are you? 

Kate: I’m so good, thanks! I’m so glad to be here.

Me: I have to tell you I really like your single "Bring Me Down Dixie" which we will talk about in a minute. This is not your first release, is it? You had two releases before... "Ghostman" in 2003 and "New Skin" in 2013. Why was there a ten-year gap between both releases?

Kate: Haha, it’s true, I took a really long break! Really, I think I got a little burnt out and felt really stuck in my life back then… I just developed this horrible case of writer’s block and I just couldn’t shake it… so when I ended up moving to Chicago I hung up my guitar, so to speak, and focused my creative energy on acting. I started playing and writing again in 2010 or 2011. For a while I was afraid to take it seriously, ‘cause I was honestly worried the writer’s block would come back. But, so far so good, fingers crossed.

Me: Your music has changed quite a bit since your first release, Kate. Did you learn something from your old releases?

Kate: Sure, tons. I learn something every time I put something out into the world, even with this new stuff. But, I was so much younger when "Ghostman" came out… Such a different version of myself.  I hear those songs and it’s like the feeling you get when you see photos of yourself from junior high school… sometimes I cringe, sometimes I think ‘well that was okay.'

Me: So, I have to ask, who is Ghostman?

Kate: Hmm… Ghostman is like that terrible devil that hides out inside us all… That makes us feel ashamed and scared. That make you want to hide who you are.

Me: One of your parents was a musician as well, am I right? Which one was it?

Kate: Actually they are both really great singers… but my mom played guitar and wrote songs and was in a little band.

Me: My dad was a musician... he was Lonesome Dave from Foghat. You heard of Foghat, right?   

Kate: Amazing! Of course. "I Just Want To Make Love To You.” That is so cool.

Me: Anyway, I never picked up any musical talent but I play the kazoo... it's harder than it looks. Haha. Did you become a musician because your mom was?

Kate: Haha, yeah, we’ve actually been looking for a good kazooist! No, not really… my whole family is very musical and we are always singing and there were always instruments around at parties and stuff. So it was pretty natural for me to be interested and comfortable singing. I was always really good at picking up instruments and just playing around on them. But when I learned to play guitar and realized I could get my own ideas out writing songs… that was a special thing.

Me: How old were you when you first picked up the guitar?

Kate: I think 15 or 16.

Me: How old were you when you started to write your own songs, Kate?

Kate: Haha. I think I learned one song… and then started writing my own! I’m still not great at learning covers I know like 5.

Me: Where are you from and where do you live now?

Kate: I’m from a small town in southeast Iowa called Mount Pleasant. I gotta say, I’m so proud to be from there. It’s an amazing place. Now we live in South Pasadena, CA.

Me: You traveled across the country when you started out, playing music, right? What did your parents think of that?

Kate: My parents have always been and continue to be amazingly supportive. They really encouraged me to explore and have adventures.

Me: Do any stories from your travels appear in your songs?

Kate: Oh sure. Traveling a lot provides a great opportunity to meet and connect with so many different, interesting people. I love people, I love new stories, and new perspectives. 

Me: Is that how you ended up in California?

Kate: We moved here from Oregon actually and, well my wife’s folks live out here and it’s nice for the kids to be near one set of grandparents, that was a draw. But mostly I ended up in California because I wanted to work as a musician and also an actor. There are so many great creative things going on here and I wanted to be part of it.

Me: Okay, so, when I read your bio I thought I misread something... but this is 2016, and not 1996 or 2006. I am talking about you have a wife. Back in the day people would never talk about this kinda thing, but people are more open now which is a good thing. Do you agree that people are more used to it, and more liberal about that kinda thing?

Kate: Haha, I’m not sure that people weren’t talking about it, I just think that the mainstream wasn’t ready to be aware of it, or acknowledge it until more recently… I mean, let’s be serious, queer folks have been around forever. But it’s easy to ignore something when it’s perceived as "scary" or "wrong," when you’re told that in so many ways. It takes people talking about it and fighting hard to be heard to make good change happen. So, yes, I am glad people are getting used to hearing it and that it’s not perceived as so strange these days. Am I happy that I can say “my wife” and be pretty sure nothing bad is gonna happen to me, and that most people are cool, heck yes I am, it’s awesome.  Good job people. Haha!

Me: You have two children as well, which is cool. What does your family think of your music?

Kate: My kids are super little. My oldest is 2 1/2 and the new one is just 14 months, so I have to take their opinions in stride. They don’t come to too many bar shows, ‘cause I’m trying to be a respectable parent. But they love sitting in on the garage rehearsals. Tony and I live next door to each other so we jam and the kids all dance, it’s great! Mostly they like when we make up songs and act silly… As for my wife, all I can say is, she’s amazing, my biggest fan. I can’t imagine doing anything if she wasn't behind it, and she’s totally behind it.

Me: Does your wife sing and play as well?

Kate: No. It’s really hard for her to even sing happy birthday in public, but she has a good voice, so I don’t know what that’s about, haha!

Me: There's promo pics of you and a guy, which is your drummer... Tony Sancho. Here is one...

Me: How did you two meet?

Kate: Tony is my musical husband. I couldn’t love or appreciate him more. We met at the School at Steppenwolf in 2007.

Me: Do you have anybody else in the band or is it just you two?

Kate: We have been lucky to find amazing players. Michael Patzia plays bass for us and Phillip Kim is on lead guitar.

Me: Okay, I have to talk about your single "Bring Me Down Dixie." Is Dixie a place or a person in the song?

Kate: Such a great question! Dixie is like the idea of the thing you want and just can’t quite touch…or get to. You gotta embrace the failure of the thing. And you have to pay homage to the "hard" that went before you…

Me: You wrote the song, right, Kate? What is the inspiration behind it?

Kate: Yes, I did. This a big song for me emotionally. It really is about wearing your heart on your sleeve about doing the thing you love. The people who really make an impact seem compelled in a way… Like I said that’s why I talk about Johnny (Cash) and Patsy (Cline) and Janis (Joplin). Those were some hard musical lives. So important and revolutionary. Our world, especially musically wouldn’t be the same if they hadn't just gone for it.

Me: Will you be making a video for it?

Kate: I don’t know…

Me: So, now you're making music again are you coming out with a full-length release?

Kate: Right now we are planning on an EP release in the spring.

Me: I said you did some acting as well... what kinda acting did you do and why did you give it up? 

Kate: Oh gosh, I’ve done so much. Mostly theater, but also some movies, commercials and television. I wouldn’t say I’ve given it up exactly… just refocused.

Me: Do you think you'll ever go back to acting?

Kate: Music is definitely my focus right now. Maybe someday that will shift again… but I’m really fulfilled doing what I’m doing now. I can never fully leave it behind, it’s such a part of who I am.

Me: Oh, I mentioned Foghat... but you went to the School of Steppenwolf? That's not Steppenwolf the band, right?

Kate: No, haha, way different.

Me: What and where is that school and what did you study?

Kate: It’s a short but very intense conservatory program for actors in Chicago. It’s a really amazing place for acting training. That’s where I met my band mate, Tony.

Me: I have a stupid question for you... I saw a pic of you in a Robin outfit that I have to show...

Me: I am taking it that was for Halloween but I am a comic book reader and a geek so I have to ask... are you a comic book reader as well? How did you pick Robin? I have to admit you look very good. 

Kate: Oh gosh, haha!  I hate to say it, but I don’t think I’ve ever read a comic book. I used to go to Goodwill and put on funny outfits and take pictures for fun. What a weirdo, right? Haha... so much fun!

Me: Alright, Kate, go ahead and mention your website.

Kate: It’s

Me: I love your music, so will you come back when your next release comes out? I hope this was fun.

Kate: That’s so sweet! Thank you, really. Yes, for sure! It was great to meet you. SO much fun!

Me: All the best, and next time I'll interview Tony as well. Take care.

Kate: Yes, yes, next time, he’s great. You too. Thanks again.

That about does it for the entry of the Phile. Thanks to Kate Brown for a great interview. The Phile will be back tomorrow with Joey Bunick from the punk band Original Sharks. Spread the word, not the turd. Don't let snakes and alligators bite you. Bye, love you, bye. Have a good Valentine's Day and remember... hold hands with the hands not holding phones.

Not if it pleases me. No, you can't stop me, not if it pleases me. - Graham Parker

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