On William H. Phillips, Who is No Longer So Mysterious

I think I told y’all how I found a stray Phillips, little William Phillips, living with the Ernesbergers in 1880? Well, I finally found a birth/baptism record for him–born May 5, 1874, almost exactly 100 years older than me, to William and Hannah Phillips in Oakland County. Thanks to the internet, I have been in touch with some of the older William’s family from his second wife, but none of us knew he had any children with his first wife.

But it turns out William H.’s life looks something like this. His mom died and he went to live with his aunt and uncle. His father seemed to be close with them, and when he remarried, he remarried at their house. Since there aren’t any 1890s census records, I don’t know if he went to live with his dad or if he stayed with his aunt and uncle. He married a gal named May, worked first painting carriages, later building cars (not a surprising trajectory for a man living in Pontiac), and then, shockingly, he went to prison and that’s where the 1920 census finds him–in the prison in Jackson. By 1930, his wife was remarried and we haven’t been able to tell if he died or if they divorced. At least not yet.

Weirdly enough, my grandpa worked at the Jackson prison, but not until a little later. I wonder if it’s possible to get prison records.

Anyway, it’s satisfying to have that part worked out.

Some Vodka Soaked Tampon Observations

1. In reading all of the different places that have linked to my post, I’ve noticed that the pot-smokers and the libertarians (I’m making a distinction on the off-chance that libertarians aren’t wholly a subset of pot-smokers) seem best able to find my post funny and informative. Thank you pot-smokers, libertarians, and pot-smoking libertarians.

2. I’ve seen a lot of comments around the web that amount to “my alcoholic co-worker totally does this.” If this is true–ask them how they do it. Just the logistics of how they fill the tampon with alcohol, get it inside them without pain, and then keep the alcohol from dripping back out. I’ve noticed that the gender of people who have these alcoholic coworkers is overwhelmingly male (meaning I’ve seen no women making these claims) and I have to believe that anyone who’s ever looked down into her underwear with righteous fury an hour after sticking a super-absorbent tampon in her cooter would just never find it plausible that there’d be some way to keep the alcohol from making that same trip and more quickly, since it’s not as thick as blood.

3. That’s the other thing that has struck me about this. People–both male and female–who seem to have the most comfort with vaginas and assholes seem to be the ones that immediately realize this is implausible (I would not claim to be among that group. I am in the group that was in the bathroom when Mrs. Kent decided to show me and her daughter how a tampon worked by dropping it in a glass of water and thus scaring us away from even trying tampons for years.). I am frightened by how many people–again, both male and female–who appear to be adults and who appear to be at least modestly sexually aware who believe this is not just something some dumbass once somewhere tried but that this is a regular thing. Again, I ask, how is it inserted and, once inserted, how is the vodka kept in place? Because, believe me, if you can keep a shot’s worth of vodka in that tampon and not have it leak out while you are sitting and standing and dancing around, I will switch to that brand and I believe every other menstruating person in America who uses tampons would switch with me. It would be viral marketing like this nation has never seen.

Anyway, it’s been strange and nice watching the traffic on that post. I’d call my parents and tell them I made Forbes, but I don’t have the heart to tell them for what.