Monday, January 22, 2018

Pheaturing Linda S. Godfrey

Hey there, welcome to the Phile for a Monday. How are you? The city of Philadelphia is a shit show right now. Because lighting fires in the middle of the streets, standing on top of moving cars driving through the city, and climbing up street lights is for amateurs, one Eagles fan brought out a dune buggy and drove it up the famous Rocky steps at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Eagles fans have outdone themselves once again. The NFC Championship sported two very important fans, Millie Wall and Phil Basser, both a remarkable 99-years-old, each hoping to see their team win the Super Bowl before their time was up. Though Grandma Millie will be at the Super Bowl, she won’t be rooting on her beloved Vikings thanks to Philly’s win over Minnesota Sunday night. Eagles fans stooped as low as to take shots at her during their post game celebration in the streets of Philadelphia.

Jeez, people.
I didn't mention this yesterday, but on Friday, the U.S. government entered a shutdown and because no one actually knows what that means, the White House sought to reassure the public of what it doesn't mean. It doesn't mean President Trump stops working. See? He's working...

The White House quickly released a photo series showing the president working, in the White House, to reiterate, definitely working. Holding phones, walking around, chatting with dudes. WORKING. The president is working. The idea began to float around that the photos of Trump working were slightly less than candid. That his staff had actually set up the pictures of Trump at a desk, doing president stuff, just so people get it in their minds that the Trump workday never stops, even when the government stops the work of all "nonessential" government employees. But if you think about it, a "photo op" is work, is it not? You have to set up the phone, frame the shot, position yourself so you're perfectly shadowed by the portrait of Andrew Jackson... you think that comes naturally? Nuh-uh. That's work. Checkmate, Democrats. A photo op is still work. Think of what’s missing here. No notes, no paper, no pen, no files, no laptop or iPad. He’s not even talking. I’m not sure he’s even on a real call. He’s not even a little serious about ending the government shutdown.
Kristen Bell was the host of last night's SAG Awards, which marked the first time the awards show had an actual host. Speaking to the audience, Bell pointed out that she was the both the first person and the first lady host. Making a joke about being "First Lady," Bell said she was going to use her platform to take on cyberbullying, since she hasn't seen "any progress made on that initiative yet." Although she didn't mention her by name, Bell was alluding to FLOTUS Melania Trump's promise to make ending cyberbullying her focus while her husband was in office. The irony, of course, is that Trump's own husband, President Donald Trump, is a notorious bully on Twitter, making up nicknames for people and attacking anyone who disagrees with him or his political positions. Bell joked that she was looking at Veep's Tony Hale, because he was "savage" on Twitter. On a more serious note, Bell told the audience, "We are living in a watershed moment and as we march forward with active momentum and open ears, let's make sure we are leading the charge with empathy and diligence. Because fear and anger never win the race."
During a speech at the Women's March in L.A. on Saturday, actress Scarlett Johansson called out James Franco for giving lip service to Time's Up despite his sexual misconduct allegations. She kicked off her fiery speech with a few pointed references that were suspected to be about Franco's hypocritical support of the #MeToo movement's legal defense fund for sexual harassment survivors. Later, a rep for Johansson confirmed to the "L.A. Times" that the comments were indeed about The Disaster Artist actor. "How could a person publicly stand by an organization that helps to provide support for victims of sexual assault while privately preying on people who have no power?” Johansson boomed at the beginning of her speech. She then poignantly added, "I want my pin back, by the way." After calling out Franco and other actors hiding behind the false guise of allyship, Johansson went on to reflect on the conditioning that manipulates women into staying submissive and silent during times of mistreatment. “I had many relationships both personal and professional where the power dynamic was so off that I had to create a narrative that I was the cool girl who could hang in and hang out, and that sometimes meant compromising what felt right for me," Johansson shared. The 33-year-old actress went on to conclude her speech by resolving to draw better boundaries for herself, and not apologize for making healthy emotional decisions for life. "No more pandering. No more feeling guilty about hurting someone’s feelings when something doesn’t feel right for me,” she said. “I have made a promise to myself to be responsible to myself, that in order to trust my instincts I must first respect them," Johansson promised. Despite being called out across social media, and by Johansson, Colbert, and others, Franco has publicly denied the sexual misconduct allegations.
TMZ is reporting that real life Manic Pixie Dream Girl Zooey Deschanel has just filed legal documents saying she doesn't have time to go to court, because "she is a well-known actress with an extremely extensive and complicated work schedule." Deschanel was sued back in 2013 by an equestrian who claims that she leased a horse from her, only to overwork it to the point that it became "lame." The horse owner is suing for vet bills and other damages. The case has been hanging around for years, but now is time for a "mandatory settlement conference," which means that both sides need to come up with agreement in order to avoid trial. Deschanel's lawyers filed a statement that said, "Court? Ain't nobody got time for that," in what I'm assuming were those exact words. Legal trouble with humans are difficult enough, but with horses? NEIGH.
Ever see an inanimate object and you think you are seeing a face? Happens to me all the time. Check it out...

He looks so happy! So, people think Twitter is brand new... it's not... it's been around for a long time. Take a look at this old Twitter ad...

Told you. Man, on Yelp Trump's Trump International Hotel Washington, D.C. is sure getting some bad reviews...

Speaking of Trump, some women at the Women's March in Washington D.c. this past weekend had some very creative signs...

Hahaha. Hey, there's a new flavor of Tide Pods that just came out...

I'm allergic to apples so I won't be trying it. Well, the Super Bowl is set, kids...

Hahaha. The Vikings now have a new logo for next season...

Awe. Poor Vikings. I really wanted them to win. So, this year is the Phile's 12 anniversary and I have been showing you how some celebrities have changed from then to now. For example in 2006 it was it's Britney, bitch...

And now in 2018...

Still Britney, bitch. Hahaha.

If you spot the Mindphuck let me know.

A temporary government shutdown started at midnight on Friday, and it took less than seven hours for Trump to blame Democrats. The shutdown took place after Senate Republicans failed to gather enough votes to put a 30-day funding bill in motion. The final vote on the procedural motion toppled at 50-49, but 60 votes were needed to advance the bill. While Republicans are the majority, five GOP Senators including Mitch McConell voted against the bill. Nonetheless, the president's blaming gaze has been firmly set up on Democrats, many of whom said they wouldn't vote for a bipartisan bill unless it fixed the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program (which Trump decided to end). Early in the morning on Saturday, Trump tweeted about how Democrats prioritize "illegal immigrants" over the military. He also claimed there need to be more seated Republicans, which is a bold assertion since the GOP currently holds the overall majority. Noting that it's the year anniversary of his presidency, Trump also claimed the government shutdown is a present from the Democrats. As with most of our present political realities, Trump has tweeted his feelings about government shutdowns in the past. Back when there was a shutdown during the Obama administration, Trump claimed it was good for the economy. Apparently, Trump is not alone in his shutdown feelings, the Office of Management and Budget director Mick Mulvaney said the shutdown was "kind of cool." Government shutdowns tend to last a few days or weeks tops. In this case, it will be whichever amount of time is needed for 60 Senators to agree on a budget plan.

Today is the second anniversary of a friend of the Phile being in the hospital and almost dying. He wanted to come on the Phile and say something about it. He's a singer, patriot and renaissance man. You know what time it is...

Good afternoon, phuckerz. Someone just reminded me it was 2 years ago today, that I was rushed to the hospital... I would then spend 8 days in a coma... wake up to find out I was seconds away from being given last rights... I spent just over a month in the hospital and would have probably died if it wasn’t for my brilliant cousin Melissa steering doctors in the right direction. Feels good to be alive. The list of those who came to visit me is far too numerous to mention here. You know who you are...

Once upon a time there was a non-conforming sparrow who decided not to fly south for the winter. However, soon the weather turned so cold that he reluctantly decided to fly south. In a short time ice began to form on his wings and he fell to Earth in a barnyard, nearly frozen solid. A cow passed by where he had fallen, and crapped on the little sparrow. The sparrow thought it was the end, but the manure warmed him and defrosted his wings! Warm and happy, able to breath, he started to sing. Just then a large cat came by, and hearing the chirping he investigated the sounds. The cat cleared away the manure, found the chirping bird, and promptly ate him. The moral of the story... Everyone who craps on you is not necessarily your enemy. Everyone who gets you out of crap is not necessarily your friend. And if you're warm and happy in a pile of crap, you might just want to keep your mouth shut.

Today's guest is the author of "Monsters Among Us: An Exploration of Otherworldly Bigfoots, Wolfmen, Portals, Phantoms, and Odd Phenomena," the 73rd book to be pheatured in the Phile's Book Club. Man, that's a long name for a book. Please welcome to the Phile...

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

Linda: I'm so glad to be here, thank you.

Me: Okay, your book "Monsters Among Us..." is the 73rd book to be pheatured in the Phile's Book Club. You wrote a lot of books on this subject, so what's new with this book? What inspired you to write it?

Linda: Well, I've been collecting these type of stories from people, the witnesses for 24 years, and over the past couple of years I realized there seem to be a larger percentage where they just couldn't be put off where they could be misrepresented as natural animals. They were connecting to them as UFO's, strange life, just odd psychic phenomena. So, I decided to put a book together where we really looked at the different creature sightings and possible anaglmolous phenomena with them.

Me: What do you think people are gonna think when they read this book, Linda?

Linda: Well, I think people will be surprised at the contents of this book.

Me: How did you get into this line of work? It's not exactly what most authors are doing.

Linda: No, that's right, and I never really even intended it. I was working as a newspaper reporter and just gotten that job as I wanted to be an editorial cartoonist. They made me a reporter and one of the first stories that came out came from hearing people from my own hometown of Elkhorn, Wisconsin saying they were seeing this thing on this country road called Bray Road that looked like a werewolf. I laughed but then I was working with an animal control officer on an expose he was working on puppy mills, and I asked him about it and he said, "Oh, yeah, people have been calling me." To my amazement he pulled a manila folder out from his desk and the file folder was marked "werewolf." The inside it was full of notes from people and contact information from people who have been calling him saying they saw this thing, they didn't know what it was but it looked like a werewolf if there was such a thing. Now, if you have a county official with a manila folder marked "werewolf," then that's news.

Me: Your life is like a real life "X-Files" episode. So, I take it you ran with this story, am I right? 

Linda: Exactly. I ran the story and dubbed it "The Beast of Bray Road" It went national much to our shock and surprise. This was back in '91 or '92 and it had never stopped.

Me: Yeah, here we are in 2018, and you are still investigating this. I take it you believe in these accounts. Why do you believe? They could be people's imaginations.

Linda: The thing is, at that time, and it still drives me, that people keep seeing these things. They have fairly consistent characteristics and the people, just like those very first witnesses, where I go talk to them, or interview them, they don't seem like they're making things up, trying to hoax, or don't have some sort of challenge mentally or anything like that. They seem like normal sober people who have been terrified or at the very least just sort of traumatized and upset about that what they saw. Most of them say, "I don't want to be known, I don't anything for this. I just want to tell this to someone who won't think I'm crazy." After so many years of that there cannot be that many people faking it.

Me: How often do you hear from people that say they saw something, Linda?

Linda: After all these years about one or two people a week. So you can do the math. That's a lot. Plus I had some of my own experiences and found tracks and evidence like that.

Me: In the book you tell a story of a human beast transformation. You struggled not knowing if you wanted to include the story, am I right? Why is that?

Linda: Well, I really tried to be sensitive, not only to the people who report their things to me. I give them a choice if they want to remain anonymous or have their names, but I'm also sensitive to my readers and to what sort of things I really should have in my books. This was such an unusual situation, very unlike anything I ever had reported to me that I just wanted to be sure that it belonged in the book.

Me: So, tell everyone what the story is, Linda.

Linda: This occurred a decade or so ago in a very small church in Illinois. A mother, father and two kids were sitting in the front row. It was a u-shaped pew directly facing the lady across from them in the front row. The sermon concluded and the minister began to step down and just as he did that lady stood up, kind of cripped her neck a little bit and let out this unearthly howl scream and almost instantaneously became this werewolf looking thing. She was covered in fur with ears and fangs but the only difference was she had hoofs instead of paws which I admit is really unusual.

Me: So, everybody in the church saw this happen and no one really talked about it?

Linda: Some of the people saw it and nobody wanted to talk about it later but several of the Elders who were up at the front of the church kind of jumped on her, flattened her down onto the pew and she very quickly returned back to her normal appearance then was taken out. With something like I like to be really sure and I have interviewed the people face to face several times, they were just salt to the earth type middle aged couple. There was absolute no reason for them to be making this up. They gave me a lot of names and places and things like that and I checked everything out and everything was exactly as they had said. So, as far as I cold tell it was a true experience. Its hard to say exactly what the creature was but since it had the church setting and seemed to be objecting the bible being there I think a lot of people would call that a demonic type manifestation.

Me: Ummm... you been had these people sign a formal statement that what they saw was factual which I think is crazy. Honestly, I think the whole story is bullshit. You actually think that wolf men, or wolf ladies exist? Let's face it, I'm probably not the only one who waves the bullshit flag on this. 

Linda: Well, Jason, as I said, people keep seeing them. I want to believe that most of the sightings of the upright canines as I prefer to call them, are probably the same thing as what the couples saw in the church. Because most of the ones that are seen are completely canine. The only difference is that they are running on their hind legs. They seem to have long paws which could be some sort of normal mutation. There's nothing supernatural about mammal running on its hind legs, they could all do it if they are sufficient motivated, trained, or sometimes because they have injured fore limbs and can't run on all fours anymore. But the things people see do have this uncanny sense about them. They will be driving along and something that looks like a werewolf will jump out of a ditch, run out in front of their car. Typically it will stop, looks at them in the eye, and they get this feeling that it could get them if it wanted to or that it was superior to them in some way. Then it just dashes off into the brush.

Me: Linda, can any of these sightings be contributed to mental illness? I think people are lying or get confused.

Linda: There's an actual psychosis where people look into the mirror at themselves and actually see what they see is a werwolf, but if somebody looks at them they just see the human being, There have been instances of people that have this psychosis who run and jump naked onto the hoods of cars while they are driving but all the people see in the report is a naked person in those cases. There are also people who have a thing called generalized hypertrichosis, where their whole body, faces, everything is covered with a thick layer of fur. It's fairly rare, there's a large family in Mexico, a lot of them have the surname of Gomez, and many of them are infiltrated with a circus. These people are still completely human and if you look at them you know they are human. These explanations can't really explain why some many of these dog like creatures, which are obviously canine because they are running on their toe pads, they have very different structured bodies and limbs. They have the tall pointed ears on their heads and long fangs. They are seeing something different.

Me: So, do you think a lot of people are just hoaxers? What if they were just people dressed up in a werewolf costume? People are assholes and would do that, Linda.

Linda: They are hoaxers out there, I'm always very mindful of those and I think they need to be reported and admitted so that people can be aware that it might be a hoaxer or someone in a mask, and then ask themselves to kind of distinguish. People will say to me something like, "I looked at it really closely and it wasn't a mask because I could see the tongue inside its mouth and the fangs were working and the eyes were glowing back light." They are always quite sure it's not a person in a suit. 

Me: Okay, so, what happened to you when you were in Michigan?

Linda: In Michigan I was on sight with a History Channel cameraman and we were there with a couple of witnesses on this very remote gravel road. There were nothing around but foliage and it was three in the morning and probably 95 degrees, and fixing to rain and something kept running around. We could hear footsteps, we could see yellow eyes in the bushes, and all of a sudden something ran across the road just outside the arc of spotlight that was set up on the road. Of course the cameraman was facing the other way but I saw it, a part of it. What I saw was the spine of something, a vertical spine, covered in gray fur, and as it passed in front of a reflective road sign it was seven feet tall and blocked the road sign out. That was exactly what the witnesses had reported. So, I think I saw the hairy spine of a man wolf, or dog man, whatever you want to call it.

Me: Wow. Okay, and in Wisconsin you saw Bigfoot? What the hell, Linda?

Linda: Yes. I was in the Kettle Moraine State Forest, and for some reason that day I was out walking by myself and I thought just for fun I'm going to bang on this tree and see if anything is down in the kettles. These kettles are scooped out deep depressions left from the last glacier. Most people don't go in them as they are full of brambles and are treacherous. I banged on the tree and to my surprise I got a couple knocks back from a very close by tree, about 150 feet away. I tried it again, got more knocks, there was something huge rustling around, staying behind the foliage and I couldn't see it. It probably was about forty feet up in the tree and I gave one more knock and it was answered by a 35 foot long, 8 inch in diameter, fresh new living oak tree branch. It was twisted off, first of all it was twisted in one motion, and in the next motion it was torn free from the tree and dropped to the floor of the kettle. This was a nice summer's evening, we hadn't had any storms, I could see the wood was new. I went down later with some friends and checked it out. There was no woodpecker holes, saw marks or anything, there was no reason for that branch to twist itself. Oak is one of the strongest wood then to be thrown to the floor. It had rub marks like something that had huge hands had rubbed the bark away. I still have one of those pieces of bark. We also smelt it, my friends and I, definitely and one of my friends daughter saw it running behind some foliage in the next kettle. It had removed itself from our presence and then it growled at us. It was the kind of growl that you knew this thing was so huge we felt like this tiny mammal that was about to be eaten, and we just said okay, it was time to leave. I think it was up in that tree which was next to a huge deer path, and it was waiting for supper to pounce upon and I spoilt its dinner.

Me: It's a good thing it didn't eat you. I have pics of this to show from your blog.

Linda: You can read the whole story and see more pics on my website under "July 2012."

Me: Were you really scared, Linda?

Linda: I was terrified and couldn't sleep that night. I knew exactly what it was, I had no doubt in my mind, especially after my friends daughter saw it and I have seen some around there since and have witnesses in my neighborhood as well.

Me: Linda, your life is a lot more exciting than mine. Thanks so much for being on the Phile. I hope I wasn't as ass and I hope you'll come back again soon when your next book comes out. Mention your website and good luck out there.

Linda: Thanks, Jason, and thanks to your readers. This was fun.

Me: I'm glad. Thanks, Linda.

Well, that does it for this entry of the Phile. Thanks to my guests Laird Jim and Linda S. Godfrey. What a crazy interview. I don't really believe any of those stories but it is a good book. The Phile will be back on Thursday with Field Music. 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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