Let’s Start at the Very Beginning…

Hi…today I want to talk about the process I go through every day, to create the amazing and brilliant cards for Phil In The Box Cards.

First job is tea with two sugars (make that three). There have been comprehensive studies that prove tea not only increases your ability to concentrate,  but also makes you much funnier,  especially if the drinker (i.e. me) did not make said tea.  (All studies carried out by me, under working from home conditions,  on one test subject,  also me. 99.9% of the subject agreed).

Once the tea is in hand,  my first job and probably the most important, is turn on the computer. This could take a while to start up because I have so much rubbish on there, stuff I should have deleted years ago. For instance, a series of photos I accidentally took of my shin, left foot and right eyebrow from when I first tried to work out how to use my new camera (now my old camera…my shin, foot and eyebrow looked much younger then).

“I am a man so why would  I need  help from a manual on this complicated piece of cutting edge technology”. The irony is that the word manual come from phrase “Man, you’ll need this”. That was written on the top of the parchment for the original designs of the pyramids, then was eventually shorted to manyou’ll then manual. Well,  that’s what I heard anyway.

After the computer has finished its long, slow process of starting up,  it’s time for a toilet break. “That’s a stupid use of your time, you could have gone to the toilet while it was starting up” I hear you mutter under your breath, while doing what you think is an accurate impression of me.
One –  I don’t sound like that and two – my computer only goes wrong behind
my back, it’s a devious bastard.

Now comes the magic. Well, once I’ve checked my emails and after looking at what Amazon suggest I should buy (because you bought a USB desk fan we thought you might be interested in this £35 book on wind surfing). £35!!!  I then have to check how much cheaper I could get it elsewhere. After an hour of searching,  I find it for £30 plus £5 P&P . I consider this a moral victory and almost buy it out of spite, sticking it to the corporate Amazon man.

My victory over Amazon,  I think deserves another cup of tea,  maybe with a biscuit. I make the tea and go to fetch the milk from the fridge. Bacon!! Now that’s a game changer! But do I have time took cook bacon? I should be writing the first of many side splitting birthday type jokes. But who works well on a empty stomach?  I decide it would be foolish and foolhardy to resist.

Thirty minutes later and full of sliced pig in white bread with tomato sauce, the magic I call greeting card design can commence. Well…it could if I had a single idea in my stupid head. I need inspiration . Sometimes a situation or a line you hear on a comedy or a phrase or juxtaposition you get from a stand-up can lead you to come up with something new and different to say about getting old.

So who do I turn to? Classics like Tony Hancock, Tommy Cooper & Spike Milligan or modern observational comics like Dara Ò Brien, Chris Rock & Stewart Lee.  I run my fingers over my DVD collection and find just the thing … Pulp Fiction!!

Ok, ok  it’s not exactly a comedy, but it has a few funny bits inbetween the drugs and  violence, rubber-clad gimp and the gay rape.
I’m pretty sure that Samuel L Jackson says something funny at the beginning, ending with his amusing catch phase of “Motherfucker”.

After 154 minutes of pure  “Brilliantly written and unfathomably cool…the most  quotable crime movie of all time- ***** Empire” I decide not to watch the “over 6 hours of bonus content”  but instead go back to the joke writing. I feel I must write a Pulp Fiction Samuel L Jackson birthday related joke (To justify my 154 minutes of research). Trouble is, I’m finding it hard to form a joke with his catch phrase of “mother fucker” in it, even if I could,  who would you give it to?

After some consideration I work out the only person you that could give that card to without a suggestion of incest, is your  father on the grounds that he fucked your mum at least once. Not sure how my Dad would’ve reacted to a card saying Happy 50th Motherfucker! However true that was. But that’s just my Dad,  other dads are available.


My dad wouldn’t get a film based card anyway unless it had been an ancient war film or  an old western…a Clint Eastwood perhapsThe Good the Bad and the Elderly maybe. My Mum on the other hand would have only got a romantic or a musical film related card – a cow throwing up on a Swiss mountain pasture  – the hills are alive with the sound of moo sick!




But anyway writing cards for my dead Mum and Dad is a very niche market. Back to SLJ, as I call him.  I’m guessing that I will just go with a line from the film with a birthday reference, as the time is getting on and I have not got anything to show for it. Most days,  it’s just a matter of getting that first one done,  just to get into the flow and your head in the game. But before that,  I think I need a cup of tea. Ooohhh I think I still have some biscuits………

If you would like to buy these or any others from our extensive range of cards for all occasions (listen, we even have cards for people you don’t actually like but are obliged to buy a card for!), please visit our Etsy store and buy, buy, buy!


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