Cort Freeman Live(ish): E02 Cancel Culture

Every day it seems like someone new is being canceled. Are we in a cancel culture or are we just exposing jerks? I address it in Episode 02 of Cort Freeman Live(ish).

Cort Freeman Live(ish): E02

Follow on Twitter: @cortfreeman, IG: @cortfreem, and Twitch: twitch.tv/cortfreeman

Cort Freeman Live(ish): E01 Inaugural Episode

There has been so much happening in 2020, I decided it was a good time to start a video podcast. My goal is to discuss this, that, and nothing. You could say it’s the other show about nothing.

In the inaugural episode, I talk COVID, Black Lives Matter, Karen, and share some theories I think could impact the 2020 election. I hope to do one every week day, going live on Twitch (twitch.tv/cortfreeman) and then share on my social accounts and YouTube…and of course, here.

Cort Freeman Live(ish): E01

What It’s Like At A Trump Rally

Tonight, much of our attention will be on President Trump’s rally in Tulsa. Tension has been building for weeks, as the rally was originally scheduled on Juneteenth in the city where Black Wall Street took place. Not a good look. Was it planned this way on purpose? Or a mere coincidence? We may never know but thankfully, the date was changed to Saturday. In addition to the issue with the date of the rally, it’s important to remember we are still in a pandemic! Many states are just now seeing their highest daily counts for coronavirus cases, and this rally that’s being held indoors without social distancing with participants who refuse to wear masks coming in from all over the country to this, already, COVID hotspot is very likely to case more problems.

With so much focus on tonight’s rally, many people are wondering: what is it like inside one of these? Well, I’ve been there and the experience felt very cult-like. I was sent as a part of Mojo In The Morning, the Detroit radio show I was a featured player on at the time, and didn’t go as an official part of the media. I can’t recall what the big incident was around this time (March 2016) but it was when Trump was just starting to really focus on his point of the media being the enemy of the people. Several times throughout the evening Trump would later point out the media section in the back calling them “losers” and telling them how awful they are. The crowd would follow his lead and boo. That’s one of the things that really stands out looking back on the rally in 2016. These people were Loyal to their candidate. A theme that would continue for the next four years. I wasn’t really known on the show at the time, so I was able to go unrecognized at the rally. To note, I was also given a ridiculous Trump-insipired orange spray tan and Halloween wig and suit with a red tie and red Make Mojo Great Again hat. Before arriving I expected the crowd to take offense to the look as it was clearly over the top and mocking. However, they didn’t. They loved the get up. I took pictures with people and was treated like a VIP, even being invited to stand in the rafters directly behind Trump, where he would be giving his speech.

The crowd was more diverse than I had imagined. Mostly white, blue collar folk. But more diversity than I expected. A bulk of the crowd seemed to be made up of Young Republicans. High school aged kids with their red hats on and varsity jackets. I mingled with the crowd while we waited for the speeches and rally to start. I knew better than to introduce myself as media or from a radio show as that would clearly identify me as an enemy of the people. I chatted with people pretending to be a die hard fan, myself, so I could record some audio and get their thoughts on things. As a bit, I made up proposals that Candidate Trump wanted to accomplish if elected. Bogus, crazy proposals that nobody could believe. But they did. Listen on the SoundCloud link below.

Intern Jack Black (me) at the Trump Rally

While the crowd waited for Candidate Trump to come out music played over the loud speaker but it was tough to hear because the entire crowd was chanting “Built The Wall! Build The Wall! Build The Wall!” I felt like I was at church. That eery feeling when everyone is chanting in the same tone, lifeless, and robotic. They were all-in. We waited and waited as the chants continued. Maybe a lock her up thrown in there here and there as a curve ball. Candidate Trump was at least 30 minutes late. Then it happened. He walked out and the crowd erupted and out of the speakers they loudly played…Uptown Girl? That’s one of the main things I recall about that rally. Trump walked out to Uptown Girl. Surely, that couldn’t have been planned and was a result of him running late, but it stands out to me. Those around me didn’t find it as amusing when I pointed it out. It wasn’t long before he had his first person booted from the rally. Then another. A third shortly after. Is this my fate? Is there something I could yell? Is that what Mojo and crew are expecting me to do? No. I couldn’t get kicked out. I have perfect location directly behind Trump. Anybody looking at him sees me. Dressed as him. So, I started doing all the wild hand gestures he was doing. Mimicking him. I got some looks but the people never seemed to mind. This grew old after a little bit, so I took it further. I slowly started removing my suit. Layer by layer until I was standing behind him wearing nothing but my underwear, a blonde wig, and a red Make Mojo Great Again Hat. The entire crowd watching him, now saw me. It got noticed online and on the TV as it was being broadcast. I also noticed I now had the attention of two Secret Service agents at the end of our row. They were locked onto me. It became clear that they were waiting for me to streak. Ah streak! That’s what I could do! But, I didn’t want to get roughed up. So I stayed behind just stretching and mimicking him, nearly naked.

This was my experience in 2016. I am not in Tulsa. Thankfully. Be safe and careful out there and for the love of science please wear a mask.

Mingling with supporters at a Trump Rally in 2016

The Worst Episodes Of My Favorite Shows

This is a TV that likely doesn’t work because it is not plugged in. (Source: @sveninho)

It’s easy to name your favorite episodes of your favorite shows. It’s fun to share your thoughts with friends about the laughs that stand out and what makes that show superior to the others. But, have you ever challenged yourself to find your least favorite episode of your favorite program? Admittedly, it’s probably not as fun to talk about in your social circles (as much as I would enjoy it). So, today, I dove deep into my favorite shows and found my least favorite episodes.

The Office

Season 6 Episode 14 – “The Banker”

The Office is the show I never stop binging. I finish the Finale and then immediately restart with the Pilot, and the cycle continues. During these binges there’s only one episode I will skip past every time—The Banker (S06, E14).

Ugh, The Banker! The skid mark on an otherwise fantastic season complete with some of my favorite and classic episodes. This episode is basically just a clip show highlighting memories from previous seasons. Yes, it’s emotional and they did a good job with it, but it’s a major downer. It does brace you for the other major downers to follow (Nellie) but it’s completely skippable and I do every time. For the record: picking a least favorite episode after Season 7 is a cheap Busch League move.

Seinfeld

Season 9 Episode 20 – “The Puerto Rican Day”

Speaking of making a Busch League pick, I had to follow up with Seinfeld. Everybody loves to rip on the Seinfeld Finale, largely for reasons I explained previously about Clip Shows. I get nobody wants a clip show, but for a finale, as they did in Seinfeld, I have no issue. Well, minimum issue. I think it worked! I liked them bringing back all the characters from previous episodes. Karma, Jerry! Karma! However, to find my least favorite episode, you don’t have to go far from there—The Puerto Rican Day.

There are many things that make “The Puerto Rican Day“ my least favorite episode of one of my least favorite shows. It’s offensive to man, first off. But the bigger issue is it wasn’t that funny. Not a lot of laughs. If you’re going to choose to be offensive, you better get some laughs out of it at least! (Don’t be offensive though, I’m not condoning that). It just fell short of every mark for me. And then was followed by clip shows and that Finale! Rough stretch to end the greatest show ever.

A last note, I pulled up a list of all the episodes season by season to do this making notes of which ones could be the least favorite, but upon landing on The Puerto Rican Day I knew it had to be that one. Then, while checking my work because I have no idea what the general population thinks is the worst episode (outside of the finale) and Variety wrote an article ALSO calling it the worst. I feel validated! I didn’t pick it because they did. No conformity going on! No ads! All my boring opinion. Eat Fresh.

South Park

Season 3 Episode 4 – Jakovasaurs

It’s hard to get my to bad talk South Park. I love that show and everything Trey and Matt touch (Orgazmo, BASEketball, etc). So believe it pains me to come on here and talk about my least favorite episode but…man, is it bad. My least favorite episode can be none other than—Jakovasaurs.

Holy annoying, Batman. I can’t sit through this episode, that alien dinosaur thing is way too obnoxious to handle. I can’t. Even thinking about this episode hurts my head. Why!? Why do that to us!?!

Family Guy

Season 12 Episode 02 – Vestigial Peter

Speaking of annoying, let’s talk about Peter’s little neck twin, Chip. Just when I was thinking no character on TV could be more annoying than the damn Jakovasaurs in comes motherloving Chip saying “hold my beer.” Ugh. I can’t make it through the episode! Too annoying. There are still laughs in the episode, granted, but I can’t voluntarily sit through that. Shut up, Meg? No, shut up, Chip.

That ‘70s Show

Season 4 Episode 24 – That ‘70s Musical

Finally, we’ve reached the ‘70s. This show has brought me many a laughs over the years. This could have been the hardest to pick a least favorite for. Of course, there’s the episode where Randy is introduced and all things go south from there. But I figured picking that would be cheap, as would any episode without Eric or Kelso so I had to make my final decision—That ‘70s Musical.

Personally, I wish they never did this. It’s cringeworthy. Feels like it goes on forever and ever with no end in sight. That moment could truly be worse than when we get introduced to Randy. As Red would put it “I wish I had a dozen feet so I could shove them in all the writers asses!”

That does it! Those are my least favorite episodes of my favorite shows. What are yours? Let me know on Twitter @CortFreeman

Mojo’s Flight to the North Pole

Over the holidays, Mojo in the Morning flew more than 60 ill children from local area hospitals to the ‘North Pole.’

It was an amazing experience to be a part of.  There aren’t many feelings like that of witnessing someone experience the best day of their life.  I am thankful I got to tag along and make this video for the event.

Thank You For Kickin’ It

 

Embed from Getty Images

 

We are years away from another World Cup, but tonight, soccer has America’s attention. Millions will tune in to watch USWNT take on China in what will be captain Abby Wambach’s final game before retirement.  At age 35, and after 250 international caps, the superstar will take the field one last time, in front of a home crowd, at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans.

After a heartbreaking loss, in penalty kicks, to Japan in the 2011 World Cup final, Wambach got her redemption this year when the U.S. Women’s National Team defeated Japan to win it all.   It was the storybook ending to her already illustrious career.

From Mia Hamm to President Obama, it seems as though everybody is heading to Twitter to express their admiration of the athlete, whom many consider to be the greatest of all time (GOAT):

Gatorade and Nike both released EMOTIONAL videos (Warning: have tissues handy) to honor Abby’s career and accomplishments.

 

You can watch Wambach put on her red, white, and blues for the final time tonight at 8:00pm ET on Fox Sports One or stream online using FoxSportsGo. (with proper subscription). Thank you for all you have done for the sport, and congratulations on everything that you have accomplished, Abby!  I believe that we will win.

 

 

 

How To Make Alabama White Sauce

Homemade Alabama White Sauce.

Homemade Alabama White Sauce.

As the four of you who actually read these writings are aware: I am a big fan of the Union Woodshop.  Their pork is on point and the beef is ballin’ out. However, quality meats aren’t the only must-have to run a successful BBQ joint, like the Woodshop.  As G. Love put it, “my baby’s got sauce.”  You need some diverse sauces to really bring out the best in your BBQ servings.  The Woodshop allows your tastebuds to travel the country with their sauce samples.  Traditional Memphis sauce (for that true Beale Street BBQ flavor), a Chinatown inspired New York BBQ, mustardy South Carolina, chipotle Texas, mayo based Bama white sauce, and two off the menu favorites–Hell Sauce (ghost pepper infused, but not overpowering) and North Carolina (a vinegar sauce perfect for pulled pork–but that’s just me).

All of the sauces are, as Guy Fieri would put it, DYNAMITE.  Take a finger and try them all, see what you like.  Through many sessions of trial and error, I have discovered that BBQ sauce is like wine.  For each meat, there is a sauce that you should pair it with.  Nothing shows this correlation better than the Alabama White Sauce and chicken.  Ooo baby.  This sauce can turn bland chicken into a cocky rooster.  They should call it Foghorn Leghorn Chicken.  It’s got attitude.  I usually don’t go to BBQ places for the chicken, but this sauce, alone, changes my mind every time.  Now, I’m proud to say, I’ve learned how to make it.  Well…not theirs…theirs is definitely still better than mine…but I’m close!  It’s super easy, too.  You most likely have all the ingredients you need in your fridge in pantry already.  Here’s what you need (to make enough for a group, or save some for later):

  • 1 cup mayo (light works, if you’re worried about that)
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon hot chili paste
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire
  • 1/2 teaspoon celery seeds
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • dash (or two) of salt and ground black pepper
  • tiny bit of garlic, because it belongs in everything

Wrap it up with some foil, let it chill for a little bit and enjoy with some chicken.  Time to grow up, no more Hidden Valley!

Campus Chowdown Ep. 4: Tios Mexican Cafe (University of Michigan)

We wanted to spice our new episode of Campus Chowdown up, so we invited Guy Fieri to come host the episode.  In the fourth installment of Campus Chowdown, the boys attempt to conquer Mt. Nacheesmo, a five-pound nacho platter, at Tios Mexican Cafe in Ann Arbor.

This was the first challenge that we have featured that was also showcased by Adam Richman on Man v. Food.  He was able to put it down, but will we?

Thai Hard: A Burger Experiment

Them's some fresh greens.

Them’s some fresh greens.

Anybody who’s been around a kitchen enough knows it’s never wrong to cook with wine. Pour some in the pan, and some in the glass (then repeat as needed). As important as wine is to the process of cooking, I think it’s imperative to cook with good herbs. Now, hold on—don’t go there. Spices, I’m talking spice, girls. What’s a fish taco without cilantro? Bruschetta without basil? Nothing that tickles my fancy, that’s for sure. Herbs provide food with that extra refreshing kick, taking any dish to the next level. It also helps the food taste authentic, giving it the taste of the region. Down in Mexico they love their cilantro, so adding it to tacos creates the nostalgia of cuisine they may have had while vacationing south of the border. Same goes with the cayenne and flavor of Texas barbeque rub, with the right combination of spices, you can create that signature bite.

There’s no denying, I’m totally hooked on food shows like Triple D, Man v Food, and the many adventures of Anthony Bourdain. I credit these shows for getting me passionate, not only about eating unique foods, but preparing them myself. The episodes are like video cookbooks—they literally show you how to create amazing dishes step by step. The other day I saw an episode where Guy Fieri was showcasing a Thai food truck and the chef put together a mouth-watering lamb burger—and put mint and cilantro in with the meat. She then topped the sandwich with some traditional slaw that you often see on Vietnamese and Thai sandwiches. I needed it. The crunch of the slaw, coupled with a refreshing minty burger, set against hot Thai peppers—yes, please. Before I could begin creating an Asian burger of my own, I was judo-chopped with more inspiration after a visit to Detroit’s Green Dot Stables and sampling their Korean slider. It’s a one of a kind burger, the likes of which I have never seen: topped with mild kim chi and peanut butter on the bottom. Somehow this combination of complete opposite flavors comes together perfectly. The hot(ish) kim chi cooled by the peanut butter to create what can only be described as harmony. There was no need to wait; I was ready to get started on my Thai Burger experiment.

Green Dot Stables' Korean Slider (Detroit)

Green Dot Stables’ Korean Slider (Detroit)

When I think of Thai flavors, peanut comes to mind first. Maybe that’s just because Pad Thai comes with peanuts? But I feel like it’s common there, so I was for sure going to follow the Green Dot’s lead and incorporate it into the burger. After doing some research, I had a list of ingredients put together and went out to the market. For the slaw topping, I gathered red peppers, broccoli slaw, garlic, cucumbers, basil, cilantro, ginger (great taste, but a lot of work to peel/grate), and a sweet red chili Thai sauce to marinate it all in for that extra hi-ya. You mix all of that together, add some salt and olive oil then set aside to cool.

Thai Slaw. Red pepper, ginger, cilantro, basil, broccoli slaw, garlic, and cucumber.

Thai Slaw. Red pepper, ginger, cilantro, basil, broccoli slaw, garlic, and cucumber.

Ordinary mayo wasn’t going to cut it with this theme, so something funky had to be created. That’s where the magic of cilantro comes into play. I’m a big supporter of cilantro. If cilantro cologne were a thing, I’d probably buy it. For this mayo concoction, there wasn’t a lot of creativity needed. Just add some cilantro and basil to the mayo, a squeeze of limejuice, light olive oil and throw that bad lad in the fridge—don’t serve warm mayo, homie (cc: Michael Scott).

Ooo white death.

Ooo white death.

The meat is where things start to really get interesting. Following the recipe of the food truck lady, you start by adding some mint to the ground meat. Not much is needed; mint can be pretty strong (although recommended on dates). Green onions then get added to the party, along with some crumbled Sriracha kettle chips for flavor and to use as a binding agent within the meat. Finish by adding some additional sweet red chili sauce to the equation, mix it all together, and get the grill a-going. When ready, apply peanut butter to the bottom bun, grill the top bun and add your cilantro mayo, then place the burger and top with the slaw mix. If you listen closely, you can hear your taste buds thanking you after each bite.

Finished product.

Finished product.

As Guy would say, these burgers were bomb-dot-com, on point, and approved by the Mayor of Flavortown. You almost forget that you’re eating a burger, because the unique flavors combine to create an entirely different eating experience. You now have all the ingredients needed to make it happen, or I encourage you to watch an episode to get inspired to re-create something on your own.

Union Woodshop: A BBQ Smoke Session

Woodshop

When you tell somebody that you’re from Clarkston (Michigan), you’ll likely receive one of two responses: something about Pine Knob (or as the suits would call it ,“DTE Energy Music Theatre”) or something about The Union’s mac and cheese. It may be a small town, but it’s got spotlight eats. The Union’s mac and cheese is so good that you can’t take your eyes off of it to notice Kid Rock at the table next to you. (he’s a regular, the dude’s got good taste for…good taste). It’s so good that the competition is desperate to get their hands on the recipe—having been caught literally trying to get their hands on the recipe. The Union’s grub, interesting ambience (being built inside an old church) and friendly staff led to such great success that the team was able to open a second restaurant (and later a third, and a fourth) next door, the Union Woodshop. The Woodshop offers a different menu than its sister restaurant, focusing on my favorite of all the foods; and since Valentine’s Day is meant to be spent surrounded by what you love, I got some BBQ.

If the Woodshop was a dude, he’d be bearded, sporting a button-up plaid shirt, half-rim glasses, a beanie, but also, like, really good at fixing cars. If that imagery doesn’t work for you, it’s a hipster’s log cabin, with great craft brews, wood-fire pizzas, and mouth-watering, Guy Fieri endorsed smoked ‘que. Like Guy demonstrates on Triple D, my go-to order is the Porker—because what goes better with pork, than more pork? Ground pork patty, house-made hot link, and maple smoked bacon combined with explosive pickled chilies, smoked cheddar, and some South Carolina mayo spread. With all that pig no wonder Porky had a stutter. Poor guy was scared s***less.

A poor phone photo of the Porker.

A poor phone photo of the Porker.

If all of that pork makes you feel like a pig, the wood-fire pizzas are always on point. I’d recommend the Woodshop pizza, their version of the BBQ chicken pizza. In addition to the smoked chicken, you get pulled pork, brisket, onions, and a tangy Memphis sauce. The other pizzas are good, too; but I have a hard time going to a BBQ joint and not getting BBQ. It’s a sin, certainly a regret (for the secular).

tea jar

Food isn’t the only highlight of the place, however. Upstairs is also, in my opinion, the “hottest” bar in town. Now, that’s not saying much because there are only, like, three or four bars in town—but it’s still really cool! The music is hip, the feng shui is peaceful, and I fall in love with every server, but that’s just me. There are so many reasons to go to the Woodshop, make it happen.