Expertise

Episode 13 – Expertise

Michael and Katherine get excited, impassioned even, to share their contrasting views on the crocktacular topic – Expertise.

 
 
 
 
 
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First Katherine comforts all those alleged “experts” out there with their fancy degrees, medals, and framed certificates. Nobody wants to take away these accolades! Relish them. Achievements are rad. That’s a given. Thing is, as cool as they are, such accomplishments only take you so far. In the constantly evolving world we all share, sometimes that expertise can calcify and get old fast if the “expert” doesn’t adjust as needed. But issues of expertise aren’t just the fault of stodgy old farts who are unwilling to learn new things and apply them to their wheelhouse. After all, our culture puts experts on pedestals only to abruptly knock them off for kicks.

Let the Expertise Debate Commence!

The debate between Katherine and Michael launches into full effect from this point forward in the expertise crockcast. Michael claims that experience is for losers, not experts and that he cares only about execution and accountability on the job. These matter much more to him than experience when he’s hiring. Michael even speculates that maybe office jobs shouldn’t require bachelor degrees as the standard minimum when hiring anymore.

While Katherine agrees about the BA becoming less crucial, she disagrees about experience. It’s not so lame, she claims. She cites elite athletes such a marathon runners, with many miles of experience behind them before they can compete at a level that qualifies as expertise. In fact, on the very day of this podcast recording, the world marathon record was broken in Berlin by Olympian, Eliud Kipchoge. This is a runner with true expertise AND lots of experience. He won the London marathon for the third time earlier this year, for instance.

Eliud Kipchoge breaks marathon world record!

Expertise Claims to Fame

Michael expresses skepticism at the notion of expertise without outcomes to show for it. He says “show me the money, baby!” But few can actually back up their claims for expertise in Michael’s experience. On this same note, Katherine chimes in that this is all the more reason to seek expertise, to get those accolades and then nobody can take them away. Do it for the markers, in other words.

Those same outcomes that prove to Michael some semblance of worthwhile ability also serve as self esteem boosters along the road of life. That way when someone like Michael says, “Show me what you can do,” you’ve got something tangible to show. Otherwise claiming expertise is just pissing in the wind. Michael thinks this particular brand of urination caused our culture’s current crisis of conscience when it comes to hiring and assessing resumes.

The Scientific Method & Replication

Katherine does a quick shtick on the Scientific Method and why it’s come more into question these days. She discusses the process thanks to this handy dandy chart below:

Thanks for the chart ScienceBuddies.org!

As illustrated in the method, a crucial element of science is the process of reproducing experiments again after they’re initially done. Thing is, this happens less and less these days because there’s nothing fun and sexy about redoing somebody else’s experiment. Thus, the process of science is in a static state. Katherine cites some tweets scientists passed back and forth on this topic were they bemoan the lack of replication studies. Fact is, without them, the whole notion of scientific expertise lies in peril.

How did the Dinosaurs Die?

Michael then waxes nostalgic for the days of dinosaurs and their sad sad demise. He talks about how the wholly accepted theory that an asteroid destroyed them may just be knocked out by an expert named Gerta. She’s a fascinating character all on her own.

In fact, she might just be the most interesting person in the world, according to MichaelJ. That’s namely because Gerta was the impetus for the nastiest fight in all of academia. Thanks to her expertise as a Paleontologist Princeton Prof she presented an alternate theory to the cause of dinosaur mass extinction in The Atlantic Monthly.

Heartfelt Wrap-up

Katherine quotes Paris Hilton and then summarizes with a passionate plea along the lines of a Jerry Springer “Final Thought”. Thus, the notion of expertise is put to bed for the podcast and it’s time to try something new. This week Michael presents Katherine with a tasty treat test. Luckily she passes the test AND gets some yumtacular goodness in the process.

We hope you’re having as much fun with Such a Crock as we are! To show your support and share the love, Subscribe at Such a Crock – Apple Podcasts then follow us on Instagram  and our fledgling Twitter could use a boost too! Thank you for supporting the CrockCast. We love you guys! Direct Download

Guilty Pleasures

Episode 12 – Guilty Pleasures

Guilty Pleasures, huh?

Our intrepid duo seems somewhat divided on this week’s concept, at least to start. Katherine rejects the very concept of a guilty pleasure; while clueless Michael doesn’t seem to know what one is.

But one thing’s for certain…

Guilty Pleasures are SUCH A CROCK

Michael doesn’t seem to know what a guilty pleasure even is. It’s a “you know it when you see it” kinda thing to him.

So he decides to look up some “popular” guilty pleasures on the Internet to get more grounded. According to research cited by Hello! Magazine, 90% of Brits indulge in so-called guilty pleasures, up to four times per week.

He and K run through some of the Hello! hit list. Do they do these things? Often yes. K never seems to feel guilty about any of them, though 😉

Examples:

  • Ordering takeaway because you can’t be bothered to cook
  • Watching Disney films and cartoons as an adult
  • Falling asleep in front of the television, or at the cinema
  • Playing on the games console when the kids are not around
  • Dancing to Meghan Trainor

Napping is NOT a Guilty Pleasure!

Katherine has been a long advocate of an afternoon nap. For years, as a young — if overworked — ad exec, she was criticized for curling up for twenty minutes under her desk or whatever.

But scientists now say that a twenty minute power nap in the afternoon is just what the doctor ordered!

Now there are even napping businesses like recharj that validate her position. Something that makes you more productive is the opposite of guilty, right?

More from The Washington Post: Would you pay for a 20-minute nap? This studio is charging $15 for one.

The Simpsons: Guilty Pleasure Icon

Michael remembers way back when The Simpsons first started to air.

In those early years, the Simpson family drew all kinds of criticism. Bart was considered a bad influence. Even the POTUS seemed to have it in for them!

But over time critics have changed their position on The Simpsons. It has crushed countless records and won even more accolades and awards.

Read my lips: Can arguably the greatest achievement in television history be considered guilty, however pleasurable?

Why we NEED Guilty Pleasures

Simply: We can’t all just do what we love for work.

Katherine cites Do What You Love… and other lies about success and happiness by Miya Tokimitsu; that separation between work and play is a healthy thing.

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Espionage

Episode 11 – Espionage

Espionage is the coolest – we get it. But it also represents lots of crocktacular acts… things like stealing your boss’s computer or pretending to be something you aren’t. So, Michael and Katherine focus on the crocks while still keeping all the sexy fun parts in their spy stories.

Spy Turned Beat Cop

As sexy as espionage may seem, some spies can’t stand it. For instance, Michael shares the story of Patrick Skinner. As a CIA agent working in Afghanistan, Skinner threw it all away and came back home to become a beat cop. It’s likely the catalyst for this extreme lifestyle shift was a great loss he suffered when his dear friend, a fellow agent, died on the job in Afghanistan.

All the grieving etc. got Skinner thinking that beat cops contribute more to make the world a better place than a CIA agent on the other side the world. Some might say that’s the biggest crock of all… but it certainly helps Skinner sleep at night. So, who are we to judge? Just a coupla crocksters.

Espionage = Corporate Competitive Intelligence

Katherine shares a story from the mid-90s when she worked in advertising and got swept into shifty corporate shenanigans. Although KFlo has never been much of a “good girl” sometimes even the naughtiest of us have to do what’s right. After all, who better to unmask a heathen than a fellow barbarian? Ever wondered what happens when competitive intelligence wins and loses clients in a corporate environment? Listen to this part of the podcast… shhhhhhh.

The Culper Ring

Spying seems like a modern phenomenon but Michael shares the fascinating story of the Revolutionary War spy ring. Under orders from General George Washington, this batch of spies were the first American intelligence agents.

They did crucial work during the war including revealing Benedict Arnold. Surprisingly they not only had a female member but also Hercules Mulligan, owner of the coolest name in the those early American days of yore. The Culper Ring prevented assassinations and protected our beautiful country in her infancy. So, what’s the crock? Well, Michael’s attempt at rapping the Hamilton lyrics relevant to the Culper Ring probably counts as a crock.

Famous & Fabulous False Fronts

Ya think you know someone… but do you? Not according to history. Even celebrities with lots of biographies and articles written about them have secret lives. Thus, Katherine discusses four examples from the WWII era when many famous people secretly worked as spies. These people were uber celebrities that kept their secret spy lives on the down low. Curious who they are? Check out the podcast to find out more. The stories might surprise you.

Best Part of all… Spying Creates Jobs, Baby

What’s the bright side to all this? Michael points out that there’s a major gap in our culture right now with a need for cybersecurity.  In fact, pretty much anyone with a certificate in cybersecurity can get a job in a flash these days. What feels better than being wanted? Well, here’s your ticket to being the MOST desirable candidate on the block. Get yourself an online certificate in cybersecurity and then watch your phone blow up and those emails come rolling in!

We love bringing you Such a Crock each week. So, if you’re having fun too please subscribe at Such a Crock – Apple Podcasts and follow us on Instagram. Thank you for supporting the CrockCast!

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worry

Episode 10 – Worry

You know what’s such a crock? WORRY!

Monday, August 27th Crock Cast at SuchACrock.com

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Did you know that worry can literally change your brain structure? According to Psychology Today and WebMD,  “Chronic Stress Can Damage Brain Structure and Connectivity”.

All about solutions, Katherine shares a couple of her favorite worry releasers. One of them can even reverse anxiety’s brain changes. Check out this Harvard University Gazette story to see how that works.

But you don’t have to go so far as brain renovation to get some relief from worry. Just take a look at human history! Katherine recommends checking out some Ken Burns for solace. From his Civil War documentary to the Oscar-winning piece he did on the Statue of Liberty, Burns uses narrative mastery and primary sources to bring history alive. History serves as our greatest teacher in times of turmoil. That’s because it shows predictable patterns in human behavior. This can thus help us better understand and accept the confusing and worrying events of today… at least Katherine thinks so.

What are you worried about anyway? At least we’re not getting hit by asteroids.

Did you know that asteroids are zipping by us on the reg?

In the last decade, we’ve had a visitor that flew by the earth at close range – closer than the moon. But what’s even more astonishing? In February of 2013, a meteor actually exploded over Chelyabinsk, Russia.

The Chelyabinsk Meteor

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Exploding with the force of approximately 30 Hiroshimas, the Chelyabinsk event injured hundreds… Albeit mostly from broken glass.

The Chelyabinsk asteroid was only a few paces across, but flew at almost 30 kilometers per second. A larger one could cause catastrophic damage… But it would take one maybe two kilometers across to have “worldwide effects”.

From NASA: “Five Years after the Chelyabinsk Meteor: NASA Leads Efforts in Planetary Defense”

Meditation Can Be a Cure for Worry

Katherine stays remarkably chilltacular even while raising a family and working in NYC. How does she do it? Her easiest and most effective method, meditation, alleviates worry and can work for pretty much anyone. Best part is, you don’t need to get a Netflix account or even break a sweat to get all the perks.

So, Katherine shares her years of experience with meditation, and in particular, the Headspace app. We get it if the notion makes you groan. But fact is, meditation WORKS. Want more evidence? Even skeptical articles can’t ignore the profound and positive impact meditation has on those who practice.

Worry is SUCH A CROCK. I mean, we could be getting invaded by a biblical pestilence or something

From Ars Technica: “US invaded by savage tick that sucks animals dry, spawns without mating”

So it turns out that several US states — including our home state of New York — are reporting infestation from the Asian Longhorned Tick.

Each female tick is essentially a clone-bomb of itself, dropping as many as 2,000 eggs. Attacking in swarms, these ticks exsanguinate their victims. Those victims are generally livestock or pets today, but the ticks do carry viruses that can be lethal to humans.

Between near-miss asteroid strikes and infestations of insatiable insects, there are just too many terrible things out of our control to waste our energy, worrying… Don’t you think? Michael does, anyway.

Even with Michael’s worrisome stories, our tenth crockcast still has some major laughs and a silly/fun taste test to boot. Show your support and share the love! Subscribe at Such a Crock – Apple Podcasts then follow us on Instagram  and check out our funky fresh Twitter.

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Deep Thoughts

Episode 9 – Deep Thoughts

Monday, August 20th. Our best crock yet!

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Are all deep thoughts “Such a Crock”? We hope not… Otherwise we might not have much of a podcast.

BUT! There are many excesses of “mental masturbation” that make philosophical and academic thinking seem distant from common sense. This week we look at some of them with a delightful mix of pragmatism and humor.

Antinatalism is Such a Crock

Michael starts off this week with a hoot he found in The New Yorker.

David Benetar is possibly the world’s most pessimistic philosopher. Benetar advocates for antinatalism, a philosophy imagining that we would all be better off if we had never been born. While Benetar would say death, like life, is problematic; we can collectively avoid a great deal of suffering by simply not having any more children.

Example excerpt:

We’re almost always hungry or thirsty. When we’re not, we must go to the bathroom. We often experience “thermal discomfort” —- we are too hot or too cold -— or are tired and unable to nap. We suffer from itches, allergies, and colds, menstrual pains or hot flashes. Life is a procession of “frustrations and irritations” —- waiting in traffic, standing in line, filling out forms. Forced to work, we often find our jobs exhausting; even those who enjoy their work may have professional aspirations that remain unfulfilled. Many lonely people remain single, while those who marry fight and divorce. People want to be, look, and feel younger, and yet they age relentlessly.

Cheery, huh?

“The Case for Not Being Born” at The New Yorker

“Fake Academia” is Such a Crock!

While Katherine’s own stories from her years as an academic are crock enough, at least her experience was real.

Unfortunately a new trend in academia is FAKE. People can buy their ways into academic journals or speaking positions at conferences for about six hundred bucks. As a test, a professor submitted a paper to a “fake academic” conference using the auto-complete feature of his smartphone.

Why might academics lower themselves to this kind of behavior? “Publish or perish.”

Professors-to-be need to publish their work and raise their profiles. Academic journals and conferences thus help them realize their ambitions… But are meant to be rigorous and lined with experts; not pay-to-play.

Learn more from “A Peek Inside the Strange World of Fake Academia” at The New York Times

“Teaching the Conflicts” is Such a Crock

In a sad turn, Michael talks about an academic model that focuses on the conflicts between different professors, rather than coming to any useful conclusions. The best example might be the student who aces an economics test and a poli sci test… By providing two wholly incompatible answers.

Michael first learned about the philosophy in a book about Pooh Bear; but the concept has since been appropriated by anti-evolution pseudoscientists an their “teaching the controversies” movement. Equal time, right?

Some basics about this from the University of Alberta

… What Makes Your Deep Thoughts so Special Anyway?

Thing is, deep thoughts are not really so precious – even children express them effectively. It could be argued that deep thoughts are best expressed in the most accessible way possible – as simple expressions about everyday stuff.

And even sometimes from the mouths of children…

Katherine points out how deep thoughts happen in our everyday life to bring us laughter even as we ponder their meaning. Then she wraps it up with some gems from the eminent Jack Handy and his SNL genius from the days of yore.

We love bringing you Such a Crock each week. So, if you dig it too please subscribe at Such a Crock – Apple Podcasts and follow us on Instagram. Thank you for supporting the CrockCast!

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Cults

Episode 8 – Cults

Cults are SUCH A CROCK

Monday, August 13th…

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Michael and Katherine explore the crock of Cults with a variety of insights. K kicks it off with the Merriam Webster definition and both agree it’s too vague to be helpful.

So, what would be helpful? Katherine has asked herself, “Am I in a cult?” at least a few times… and not just in spinning class. She offers a list of ways to use as a guide when faced with that crucial question.

Many are drawn from a CBS News online article which interviews cult expert, Steve Echoil, head of the International Cultic Studies Association. As Katherine ponders the list, the duo discuss examples of each item as it applies to their own experiences.

In fact, Michael joins the cult discussion with a fond memory from childhood – the world of Dungeons and Dragons. Turns out it was Such a Crock when propaganda pamphlets in his small town pointed to his beloved D&D as a training ground for occult practices.

Check out this cartoon at Chick Publications

But as Katherine and Michael point out, the 80s were rife with accusations of cult practices and devil worship. Such fears were as common in 80s pop culture as parachute pants and Annie perms.

Speaking of the 80s, Katherine just finished watching the wondrous TV show The Americans, a 1980s period piece about Russian spies in the USA. She mentions it because the organization EST, oft called a cult, plays a major role in the show. Turns out EST actually helped lots of people and doesn’t really qualify as a cult.

Michael then brings the cult talk to the finish line with an actual real life cult currently in the news.  Nxivm, pronounced (Nex-ee-um) has been around for about a decade and makes headlines on the reg. That’s not just because they brand their members but also because they have some celebrities all up in there. In fact, that’s exactly what piqued Michael’s interest – a certain Smallville actress who is currently out on bail for Nxivm naughtiness.

Learn lots more with a listen to our podcast this week. It’s a crock that’s chock full of silliness and cult-like experiences. You might learn something but it’s fun to listen along either way.

As always, we’d love you to subscribe at Such a Crock – Apple Podcasts or followed us on Instagram. Thanks for listening!

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Milk

Episode 7 – Milk

Didn’t we all grow up drinking milk? Well, we grew up doing LOTS of things that are a crock! Indeed, the list is infinite…

Monday, August 6th

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Milk is SUCH A CROCK! (or at least lots of stuff around it is)

Eating only chicken nuggets is SUCH A CROCK

Michael starts this episode off in kind of a weird way. In the UK, Stacey Irvine collapsed back in 2012 due to eating — reportedly — a diet of only chicken nuggets.

Wait a minute… Shouldn’t this be a story for back in Episode 3?

It turns out that a diet of only chicken nuggets isn’t so unique in its lack of nourishment. There’s almost no food you can subsist entirely on… Almost!

Mother’s milk sustains little babies, and can theoretically keep an adult human being alive, too. Good luck finding a woman to supply a sufficient amount, though.

Katherine is incredulous about the existence of a girl who ate nothing but chicken nuggets for fifteen years, but Irvine’s story has been widely reported, including by CBS News: British teen Stacey Irvine hospitalized after eating nothing but chicken nuggets for 15 years

Plus: What If I Ate Only One Type of Food? at LiveScience.

Raw Milk is SUCH A CROCK

Wondering what it is? Namely, it’s not pasteurized.

Today, it’s more difficult to get raw milk than conventional pasteurized, but it still sells due to health claims not necessarily supported by federal regulators.

While raw advocates claim that it helps with lactose intolerance or allergies, Katherine’s research indicates that this is not the case… And anyway, the societal benefits of pasteurization (i.e. the prevention of widespread disease) outweigh such claims.

Interested in learning more? Check out these links to raw milk studies.

NCBI Study   CDC Food Safety Report  FDA Weighs In

Reducing Milk Fat is SUCH A CROCK

Michael starts his second segment out with a 2007 press release from Starbucks. You might not know this, but Starbucks defaults to 2% for espresso drinks if customers don’t specify a type of milk in their order.

Starbucks Moves to Reduced Fat Milk

It turns out that whatever kind you’re drinking — whole, 2%, or skim — milk is likely contributing to weight gain.

That’s because, while milk ranks low in glycemic index, your body probably treats it like eating white bread. So why does Michael — crazy over carbs as Katherine is wont to claim — drink whole milk? Maybe he should stick to his goofy nut milk alternatives.

Further on glycemic index: Glycemic index for 60+ foods at Harvard Medical School

Milking “everything” is SUCH A CROCK

Katherine closes out our milk melee with a list of the BEST milk alternatives from Food & Wine magazine: Non-Dairy Milk, Taste-Tested and Ranked

First she tries to trick Michael into drinking “pea” milk (NOT ‘pee’). Katherine then shares her thoughts on the many flavors and consistencies of the various milk alternatives. At last, she wraps up the ranking to the horror, and eventually winner’s circle of her podcast partner in the end.

Find out why in the podcast!

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Auto Updates

Episode 6 – Computer & Phone Updates

Automatic updates are such a crock! In today’s podcast, Michael and Katherine discuss how computer and phone updates bedevil on a near-biblical basis.

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Computer & Phone Updates

Automatic Windows Updates are SUCH A CROCK

Michael shares the story of his “$1,500 paperweight” … aka Alienware PC.

An automatic Windows update knocked out his computer. That was bad enough. But then the good people at Microsoft sent him a link to fix it. Things got even worse from there. Turns out, Microsoft Help sent him a broken link. You can’t make this up.

Thus, an automatic Windows update killed our hero’s computer. He brought it to the local Microsoft Store. There, Michael learned that automatic update knockouts are common killers. The Microsoft Store volunteered to fix the computer “for free”. But even after that, it’s still pretty darn dead. Had the update been a choice, he might still have a working PC. But like many computer and phone updates these days, it was automatic. The kiss of death.

What you THINK about these updates is SUCH A CROCK

Katherine shares the truth behind automatic updates… And it’s fascinating.

“A common perception is that updates merely fix defects. However, one study indicates over 80% of maintenance effort is used for non-corrective actions. This perception is perpetuated by users submitting problem reports that in reality are functionality enhancements to the system. More recent studies put the bug-fixing proportion closer to 21%.

“Sometimes called a patch, an update is a set of changes to a computer program or its supporting data designed to update, fix, or improve it. This includes fixing security vulnerabilities and other bugs, with such patches usually being called bug fixes, and improving the usability or performance. Although meant to fix problems, poorly designed patches can sometimes introduce new problems sometimes called software regressions. In some cases updates even break the functionality or disable a device.”

Learn more at The Balance: The Difference Between Software Updates and Upgrades

Planned Obsolescence with Computer and Phone Updates is SUCH A CROCK

Michael finds Apple just as annoying for computer and phone updates.

For instance, in a different new laptop tribulation, he rants and raves about the new MacBook Pro’s lack of USB ports.

USB ports are universal necessities for most people. Do you charge your phone? How about record with a mic? Pulling these ports deprives you of access to these common computer needs.

We wrapped up the podcast with an ode to last week’s serving size discussion. Specifically, Michael tried a 100 calorie serving size packet of tasty cashews. Turns out that’s about a handful of yummy.

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Serving Size

Episode 5 – Serving Size

Today Michael and Katherine tackle the not-only-food topic of:

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Serving size? Like “suggested” serving size? Because he often has food on the brain, Michael jumped, mentally, to calories. To get a baseline, Michael consulted Google about just how many calories someone should eat per day. This is what he “learned”:

The 2,000 calorie per day guideline is SUCH A CROCK

The Google guideline — which to be fair isn’t so much “from” Google as “reported by” Google — is such a crock!

Unfortunately, many people live and eat believing that 2,000 calories is the proper baseline number of calories they should be eating. This thinking is problematic in multiple ways, but can most easily be summed up by the idea that all calories are not created equal, or “beef calories do not equal bourbon calories”.

Michael quotes The 4-Hour Body by Tim Ferriss, or rather, a study by Kekwick and Pawan comparing three groups put “on calorically equal semistarvation diets”:

  • 1,000 calories at 90% fat: lose 0.9 lbs. per day,
  • 1,000 calories at 90% protein: lose 0.6 lbs. per day,
  • But 1,000 calories at 90% carbohydrate? GAIN — motherloving gain — 0.24 lbs. per day!

Even if we consider “a calorie a calorie” (which, based on Kekwick and Pawan’s work, above, we shouldn’t), and the 2,000 calorie per day guideline…

Well, MichaelJ has some fun with the nutritional guidelines from one of America’s favorite chain restaurants. We’ll let you listen and draw your own conclusions there around Serving Size.

But “serving size” isn’t just about food. For instance, many things have a regulated or at least advertised time frames. Just like people who are obsessed with getting their money’s worth, Katherine personally seeks a life where she gets the most out her time.

A “week” of camp might just be SUCH A CROCK

One might think sending your child to the alleged “#1, World’s Best Computer Camp” would be worth… something. But one would be wrong. What makes it less than the alleged best? Time spent is falsely advertised! When you’re paying for “a week” of camp you are not expecting a half-day Friday, and certainly not expecting to spend it yourself looking a pictures of other kids in front of computer screens.

Further, you may have heard that there are 24 hours in each day. Some might even call that a fact! Fine. But don’t layer on the info that Beyonce’s 24 hours are the same 24 hours as anybody else’s. Some people have resources that can boost what they accomplish during that supposedly same 24 hours. If you’re Mariah Carey, and thus somebody holds your straw while you sip, that frees up both hands to multitask in ways the rest of us can only imagine.

Should travel time be included in a charitable work time sheet? It’s time you gave… But is it worthy of record keeping and thus credit toward time-served?

The Soda Ban was SUCH A CROCK

Back in 2013 then-NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg attempted what was colloquially called the “soda ban”.

It didn’t ban soda so much as try to limit serving sizes. Under Bloomberg’s attempt, you could not buy drinks larger than 16 ounces at “food-service establishments” in New York City. Michael thinks the soda ban came from a good place, but its implementation was horrendously flawed.

  • 7-Eleven was excluded, so you could still get a Big Gulp
  • You might not be able to buy a drink of greater than 16 ounces, but you could just buy another drink
  • Fruit juice was excluded. Michael maintains there is no conceptual difference between fruit juice and soda for the purposes of this ban
  • Diet soda was excluded; how would that have even worked?
  • Milk drinks, including milkshakes, were exempt. No one knew what to do about Starbucks Frappucinos

Such. A. Crock.

Read more at The Washington Post: The New York City soda ban explained

We finish the episode with a wonderful sweet treat inspired by Somebody Feed Phil on Netflix. Here’s a preview:

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The Most Important Meal

Episode 4 – The Most Important Meal

The most important meal… What is it? Is breakfast the most important meal? What about one’s last meal? And are folks who Instagram every bespoke artisanal gluten-free waffle mentally ill? Such a Crock investigates:

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Breakfast is Such a Crock!

Okay, okay… Breakfast is probably okay.

But the idea that breakfast is the “most important meal” of the day is a crock.

It turns out a talented PR man by the name of Edward Bernays working for the Beech-Nut company used a combination of preacher-style moralization and marketing to create the idea of the American breakfast… To sell product! Bernays got about 5,000 doctors to co-sign his very un-scientific letter pushing breakfast food, and our culture today is largely an extension of that. I mean… balls?

Read more in The Guardian: How lobbyists made breakfast ‘the most important meal of the day’

Is the Notion of a Last Meal Becoming a Crock?

The “last meal” is a tradition among condemned prisoners. It’s thought to have started in 1924 in Texas.

In some places, a prison warden will share the last meal with a prisoner. In others there are strict limitations on how much can be spent on a last meal.

Michael shares some famous last meals, from a single communion wafer to a surprising amount of KFC.

But it’s the lavish request of Laurence Russell Brewer that gets last meals knocked off the Texas tradition list… And Michael thinks that is a crock. Brewer ordered a ton of food, but didn’t eat any of it. His bad behavior has had lasting impact for condemned Texans.

My San Antonio: Last-meal requests off death row menu

Food Porn is Such a Crock!

Is documenting all your food on Instagram a sign of mental illness?

Some folks at the CBC seem to think so: Posting pictures of meals online? You may have health problems

… But Michael certainly hopes not!

That doesn’t mean that every meal you eat is worthy of Instagram commemoration. That said, Katherine comes up with some [hopefully] reasonable reasons to document your dinner.

Was Eating the Ortolan Such a Crock?

Michael was curious about Bobby Axelrod’s quasi-last meal on Billions this past season. The Ortolan bunting is illegal to eat; but it’s supposedly the most sublime dining experience possible.

So heavy was the language around the forbidden ortolan, from celebrity chef Wylie Dufresne to the now-departed Tony Bourdain that Michael just had to follow up.

Is the ortolan real? Yes.

Do you really wear a napkin over your head to hide your shame while eating it? Apparently.

But is crunching on songbird bones whole, and scalding your mouth and throat with hot fat possibly the apex of meals? Give us a listen and judge for yourself!

More from CNBC: The illegal delicacy Axe ate on ‘Billions’ is a real thing — here’s the story behind it

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