Monday, May 23, 2016

Pheaturing Steve McCormick

Hey there, good morning and welcome to the Phile for a Monday, people. How are you? Let's start with a story about a couple who were arrested for having sex during Batman v. Superman... the only people who enjoyed the movie. A couple was arrested in Manchester, United Kingdom during a screening of Batman v Superman because the guy's little Man of Steel leaped into the woman's Batcave mid-movie. According to "The Mirror," movie theatre (it's the U.K.) staff confronted the pair, who were enjoying some superheroic sexy time as Lex Luthor orchestrated a showdown between Superman and Batman. Hopefully, they waited until after (yet another) sequence of Batman's parents dying. They were presumably turned on by all those longing stares between Supes and Bats. Or maybe they were bored by the movie and found a different way to entertain themselves. The couple, horny and drunk, did not take well to being interrupted mid-coitus, and the guy went and punched the employee. The woman was arrested for public indecency, and the man was arrested for both indecency and assault. This never would have happened at the much-better Captain America: Civil War.
Okay, did you people see that video of the woman in the Chewbacca mask? Here's a screen shot of the woman with her new favorite thing in the whole world.

The woman, Candace Payne, filmed herself with an item she just bought that is basically giving her an orgasm of happiness. Not a sex toy... a talking Chewbacca mask. SHE IS SO EXCITED ABOUT THIS MASK, Y'ALL. She doesn't even bother trying to hide her glee. It would be impossible to, anyway. The joy would just bubble up and escape from the seatbelt and flow under the car and float her home on an ever-rising wave of delight. Has anyone ever been this happy about anything? Probably not. Will anyone ever again? Doubtful. She's cornered the market on happiness. If you need happiness, you'll have to borrow it from her. She just cannot stop laughing and clapping. She's very clear that the talking Chewie mask isn't for her sons, it's absolutely, 100% for her. "When it's said and done, at the end of the day, this is MINE that I bought, and I'm gonna keep it for my own." Hey kids, cheer up... no, you don't get a toy, but you do get to see your mom in a state of cackling euphoria. Who is she making this video for, though? The answer is: for you. She made it for you. So you can see, for once in your pitiful life, what true jubilation looks like. And what does it look like? It looks like a hysterical, slightly unhinged woman in a talking Star Wars mask. Enjoy.
George Zimmerman continues to milk his infamous shooting of an unarmed teen for all the publicity it's worth, and now he's squeezed that rock so hard money actually came out. After trolls like "Racist McShootface" and "Weedlord Bonerhitler" caused the auction for the gun that killed Trayvon Martin to close early, the United Gun Group (ugg) has finally managed to keep it open long enough for the firearm to sell. It went at the shameful sum of over $120,000, according to TMZ. Not that $120,000 is a specifically shameful number, but anything above zero seems too much for the weapon that killed a kid and brought George Zimmerman into the public consciousness. Apparently a verification system is to thank (blame) for keeping the auction unmolested by fake users, and in the end only seven people ended up bidding. Zimmerman still must approve of the sale before it's final. Hopefully, this is the last you'll ever hear of him, but he's probably 2020's big political star to watch.
The O.J. Simpson verdict was one of the most-watched television events in history. Around 150 million people, that's 57% of the country, stopped everything they were doing at 10 am to watch what many believed to be a guilty man be declared free to go. Every part of the verdict was shocking, not the least of which was when O.J. leaned in to whisper to his council Robert Shapiro. Shapiro has never revealed what Simpson said in those first moments after the acquittal, until talking with FOX's Megyn Kelly Tuesday night. As Shapiro told Kelly, O.J.'s first words after being found not guilty were, "You had told me this would be the result from the beginning. You were right." If you take a look at Shapiro's reaction to O.J., he immediately checks the camera, terrified that someone might have heard. It's like he thought he'd been caught. When Kelly asked if he really believed Simpson was innocent, he gave what seems like resounding lawyer-speak for "no." "As far as moral justice," he told Kelly, "I haven't discussed it with anyone, including my wife." Yeah, you can't unburden yourself about how you probably got a double murderer off; it could really cause a rift in your marriage. Best to never speak of it again. Or until you're back on the news; whichever comes first.
You know how women are always saying, "Man, I wish a startup would climb inside my vagina?" Well finally, one is: my.Flow, the Bluetooth-enabled tampon, is here to bring startup culture to your vaginal canal. The idea is that my.Flow helps you avoid messy situations by sending you text updates on how full your tampon is and when you should change it. Technically, the tampon itself isn't Bluetooth-enabled. The only thing that's weird... I mean innovative about the actual tampon is that it has a super-long string that hooks directly into a "flow monitor." (It's sort of like when you make a telephone out of two cans and a string as a kid, except one of the cans is in your vajay.) Then, you walk around with the tampon-connected flow monitor on your waistband or underwear, which will surely look really cool next to the belt-mounted cellphone holster you already wear (Siri, take a note: lock down patent on duo cellphone/my.Flow holster). When it's not on your pants, my.Flow lives on your keychain, because as the old saying goes, "Keep your friends close, but your period monitor closer." In the company's video, Here's the company's video, which has a super awkward start with a record scratch and then a dude asking, "Wait, what? How did she know how full her tampon is?" because nothing puts ladies in the mood to learn about new menstrual products like cheesy video effects and men talking. (That said, this company is co-run by a man and a woman, which is much better gender equality that most start ups.) The app does track your period, which is cool. It gives you month-to-month stats on duration, heaviness of your flow, etc. But is it necessary? Somehow, miraculously, women have managed their periods without Bluetooth hooked up to their bits for thousands of years. And many accidents don't come from not knowing when to change your tampon, but rather from things like getting your period earlier than expected. So, my.Flow, here's the real question: how can you get Bluetooth all the way up into the uterus?
So, I don't know if you know anything about me, but one thing I will tell you is that I never break any rules. Haha. Really. Ummm... anyway. I don't. Unlike this guy...

He's so rude as well. So, have you seen Trump's new look? I have no idea what happened to him.

He looks like Sanders now. Almost. No tan and no wig. Hahaha. Speaking of Trump, you know there's a new Trump movie, right. Here's the poster for it...

Hmmm. Budweiser just announced that, through November, their beer would be renamed “America.”  Here on the Phile, I got a chance to see the new label. Check it out, kids...

I have no idea what to think. Okay, and now form the home office in Port Jefferson, New York, here is...

Top Phive Phacts About The New Burger King Spa
5. Ripping quest beef-farts in the sauna isn't just tolerated... it's expected.
4. The sauna-steam is activated by pouring ice-cold Dr. Pepper onto piping-hot hash browns.
3. Relaxing ambient music mixes pleasingly with the sound of cooks screaming at each tier to hurry up with the damn sausage biscuits.
2. It's perfect for patrons who are used to sweating excessively while they eat.
and the number one phact about the new Burger King Spa...
1. For many, this won't be the first time they've ever been naked in a Burger King.

If you spot the Mindphuck let me know. Okay, so, ever hear the saying "zero fucks different"? I hear that quite a bit in my personal life, and never really knew what it meant... until now. So, here's a new pheature simply called...

Yup. And now for some sad news...

Morley Safer 
November 8th, 1931 — May 19th, 2016
Tick, tick, tick, tick, tick, tick.

Alan Young 
November 19th, 1919 — May 19th, 2016
A corpse is a corpse, of course, of course, and no one can talk to a corpse of course.

The 48th book to be pheatured in the Phile's Book Club is...

Laura will be a guest on the Phile in a few weeks.

Today's guest is a British singer whose album "Lowlights and Footnotes" is available at and the British version of iTunes. Please welcome to the Phile... Steve McCormick.

Me: Hi there, Steve, welcome to the Phile. So, how are you?

Steve: Rubbish! Very sore throat and my glands are up, so I've been better!

Me: I have to say I purchased "Lowlights & Footnotes" from Amazon and really, really liked it. Good job. Did you produce it yourself?

Steve: I'm glad you enjoyed it. I wrote, recorded, played every instrument and produced the album single-handedly, other than pedal steel and the mastering. It wasn't because I was trying to be a smart-arse, it was down to the fact that I didn't have a live band (I do now) and I have a home studio. I should clarify the home studio comment though... it's a room that is about 6ft x 7ft, hence the reference to Spare Room Studios in the sleeve notes.

Me: So, what's wrong about being another English cowboy? I love that opening track by the way.

Steve: There are two things to this... the first being fake Americana accents, wearing Stetsons and trying to be American. There are few things as cringeworthy as hearing somebody singing in a full-on yee-haw accent, then speaking between songs in a regional English accent. Also, if you have ever visited a traditional C&W club in the U.K., you might well have witnessed the peculiar phenomenon of grown men dressing up as cowboys and having cap gun fights. I'd advise any Americans visiting the U.K. to try and get to a C&W night in a social club and see it for themselves. It's an experience.

Me: Speaking of England, you're from Carlisle, right? That's in Cumbria if I believe. For those that don't know, in relation to London, where is Carlisle?

Steve: Carlisle is pretty much as close to Scotland as you can get, just a few miles before the border, and well-known historically for exchanging hands between England and Scotland. Despite it's history, it's a cultural backwater. It's just before Gretna Green, which I a well-known tourist spot.

Me: I was born in London but lived in Oxford for a few years. Do you get out to Oxford to play much?

Steve: I've never played Oxford but it's a beautiful city. Hopefully within the next year we'll make it there with the band.

Me: Speaking of playing, Steve. You played a number of festivals in the U.K., including the Cockermouth Rock Festival. What kind of festival is that? I would be careful to play in places with names like that. Haha.

Steve: Haha. Cockermouth is indeed an amusingly named town. Its festival sadly turned out to be populated mostly by cover bands, playing the latest Killers, etc. Not my idea of a great day out.

Me: I checked out your influences and two names stuck out... Ron Sexsmith and Squeeze. I interviewed Ron and John Bentley from Squeeze on the Phile, y'know...

Steve: A little name dropping there. Ha.

Me: Yeah. Guilty. Anyway, have you ever met any of your influences or even better opened for any of them?

Steve: I met Ron a few years back but just after a gig as a paying punter, and also Robbie Fulks. I felt like a total tit on both counts really, as I felt quite nervous. I've since sent Robbie a copy of my album and he gave me some very kind feedback. I'd love to open for him on tour.

Me: I was surprised in your list on your bio you didn't mention Graham Parker, but you did mention Randy Newman. Is there a reason for this?

Steve: Totally honestly, I've never heard him. I'll open up Spotify now!

Me: Speaking of Robbie Fulks, his tribute album to Michael Jackson is great.

Steve: Yeah. "Billie Jean" is a cracker.

Me: Steve, apart from doing your own thing, you are working with a singer named Annette Stubbs, right? How did you two meet and what does your collaboration consist of?

Steve: Annette and I met at work, through her boyfriend, Rob Millican, who is also our live drummer and all-round top bloke. Annette has a really beautiful voice and a great ear for harmony and she sings harmony and plays some keyboards. Her voice adds a whole new texture to the sound and I've now written my first duet.

Me: Steve, did you know there's a singer in Nashville with the same as you. I bet you can take him in a fight.

Steve: Haha, he's a big guy! He'd probably kick my arse from Nashville back to Carlisle! Seriously though, he's a lovely guy, we've corresponded via email on and off for a few years, simply because I was amused by the same name thing and the fact we both performed as singer/songwriters. There are at least two others I am aware of... one in L.A. who also makes his own microphones or something and one in Middlesborough in England. It's one reason to add the distinction of a band to the name, hence Steve McCormick and the Half Moons.

Me: Well, as I said I really enjoyed "Lowlights & Footnotes", Steve. Are you working on a follow up? When it comes out I would love to have you back. And Annette if she would like to.

Steve: I'm sure she'd love to. The second album is pretty much written now, so some of the songs will get a bit of a road test, or at least be fleshed out in rehearsal with the band. Whenever I write a new song, I recorded demos at home but I want at least the band demos to be done by the end of the year. Ideally, I'll find a label to work with on this one.

Me: Go ahead and plug your websites and anything else you wanna tell the readers. I hope to see you in the states someday, Steve. Thanks again and good luck with everything.

Steve: Thanks for having me, I appreciate it. The best place to go is where you can download a 4-track sampler from "Lowlights and Footnotes," read the lyrics, reviews, there are links to iTunes, etc. and you can buy a, gasp, real compact disc directly from me! Closing comment: thanks for the introduction to Graham Parker, he's bloody good! Not quite sure how he's stayed off my radar for so long!

Me: Yeah, Graham is my favorite! Take care, Steve. Come back again soon!

That about does it for this entry of the Phile. Thanks to Steve for a great interview. Well, today would of been my mum's birthday. So, happy birthday, mum. The Phile will be back next Sunday with musician Mike Bloom. So, 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

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