You know what we're already missing (besides Dustin's gray V-neck T-shirts)? The freedom to ask the Big Brother evictees whatever we want! Starting with Dustin Erikstrup, the 22-year-old shoe salesman from Chicago, who was sent packing Thursday night by a vote of 4 to 2, the ousted houseguests are now sequestered members of the jury that will decide the show's winner. That means we can't ask them about anything they did not witness for themselves in the house. Fighting the urge to tell Dustin that Jessica thought he had a secret alliance with Dick and Daniele ? and that Eric, whom he blames for his demise, only gunned for him because America told him to ? we managed to chat about his ex Joe, his upcoming trip to Barbados, and why Dick is pure evil.
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: You weren't exactly a Big Brother fan before entering the house. Why did you decide to come on the show as your ex Joe's enemy?
DUSTIN: I had just graduated college. It was kinda looking like a hum-drum summer. I had only a few things planned. I was working part-time at a relatively dead-end job. Two days after I graduated, this kind of fell into my lap, and so I decided to run with it.
EW: What was your strategy coming into the house?
Dustin: My strategy was actually to kinda play dumb. I was going to use the fact that I hadn't seen previous seasons to my advantage. People were trying to use me as putty in their hands, but I wasn't going to let them.
EW: When did it really become ''game on'' for you?
Dustin: I would say toward the end of Week 3, after Joe had left. I thought to myself, Okay, now I can really step up my game. It was after that that I became Head of Household and started directing people in the game as opposed to being a person who just let the game be played for them.
EW: Did you ever think that Joe would bring up the gonorrhea situation?
Dustin: You know, again, I can't say it enough: That's his issue. I'm not the one who ended up with some sort of sexually transmitted disease. If he wanted to sell himself out on national television, that's fine, because I had nothing to do with that.
EW: Zach mentioned in his goodbye video that your arrogance was a liability for you. Did you know that's how housemates perceived you?
Dustin: Absolutely. I'd become overconfident in the way I was playing the game, and I sort of lost a level-headedness about it. That's inevitably what led to my demise. I had done quite a few bold moves in the game. I took those prizes during the POV. I sent Nick home when he's America's favorite person in the house. I chose to keep Eric and go against Dick and Daniele's wishes in Week Five. And I almost beat Dick in his own Power of Veto competition. Those are all very bold moves, and then inevitably the boldest move of all was to go up as a pawn, and it got me out of the house.
EW: You volunteered to be the pawn, the week after the pawn you put up as HOH was sent home. I'm assuming that's a regret.
Dustin: Obviously, again, that was an overconfidence thing, suggesting to throw me up there as a big Ha Ha to Dick. Looking back, that's definitely the one regret I have in this game.
EW: What about the croquet match ? I can't believe Dick got the five points when he needed it.
Dustin: I know. Rrrr. That one gets me every time I think about it. That one point.
EW: Can you appreciate, on any level, what Dick pulled off last night by not going home?
Dustin: On a strategic level, I have to say I'm more disappointed in other people for following through with it. I don't want to give Dick any sort of respect because I don't think that his tactics in the game were respectful at all. I feel that his fear tactics are what drove people to do what they did. The fact that he had a very strong two-person alliance with his daughter, people tried to jump on that bandwagon.
EW: Dick calling you Princess ? how did you deal with that?
Dustin: Honestly, he was calling Carol a princess and Jessica a princess in Weeks One and Two for the way that they didn't do anything around the house. And he just decided to attack my sexuality in a low blow, and you know, I didn't really take it offensively. Him calling me a princess, I could have really cared less. Him attacking Jameka's religious beliefs and Amber's motherhood ? those are the attacks that I took personally.
When he started banging the pots and pans, did it seem out of the blue to you or like typical Dick?
DUSTIN: It seemed pretty typical of a six-year-old. Leave it to Dick to act his age, being a 44-year-old parent that he allegedly is, to upset the entire house and bang pots and pans. I don't respect his fear tactics. There's a huge difference between fear and respect. People in the house fear Dick, they don't respect him.
EW: We saw you in the hot tub refer to Dick as a ''washed-up, dead-beat, white-trash dad.'' I don't remember seeing what he did to elicit that comment from you at that moment. Was that pent-up anger?
Dustin: It was the way that Amber and Jameka had internalized his comments. I think women should be held in higher respect than men. For a man to attack a woman's motherhood or a woman's religious beliefs, or anybody's religious beliefs in that sense, it really hit me. I was really disappointed in myself for calling Dick the things that he is. [Slight chuckle]
EW: The POV competition with the prizes: Any regrets for taking them, or are you just planning your trip to Barbados?
Dustin: Honestly, I never saw myself winning this game. It was my goal to make it into the jury, and I did that. If I'm not gonna win the show, at least I'll walk out of here with something: That was my mentality walking into the house and snatching up those prizes at that moment. It was my Head of Household week. I will do with it what I please. And that's exactly what I did.
EW: Now that you've had a few hours to process the vote, do you look at how things went down any differently?
Dustin: No. There must have been some sort of flip. Eric obviously didn't like the way that the five of us were going and decided to go to the other side. His alliance with Jen was clearly still strong and he used that to his advantage to vote me out.
EW: You mentioned last night that you had an inclination that the tide was changing in Dick's favor. How did you know?
Dustin: It's funny, on Wednesday morning at 4:15, I woke up to go to the bathroom, and I heard whispers in the bathroom, and it was Eric and Jen. And it had been rumored the week before that the two of them had an alliance and that only solidified that fact. From that moment forward, the way things carried about on eviction day ? body language, conversations ? I could tell something had changed. Amber had told me she had witnessed a conversation with Eric and Dick that looked a little peculiar. That obviously turned out to be true.
EW: Did you have any deals that we'd find surprising?
Dustin: I did have some sort of sleeper alliance with Zach since Week One. I was holding it more as a fake, and apparently it got back to him that I wasn't too serious about that. He was able to vote me out without any sort of regret on his behalf.
EW: I interviewed Joe when he got evicted. I know that he used to talk to you about the show when you were together. Did you learn anything from him that you used in the game?
Dustin: [Thinks] No. Obviously, Joe's strategies in this game didn't get him very far. I never really heeded his advice in life or on this game. I did things in my own way. Overall, I'm relatively pleased with the way things turned out.
EW: How do you look at your position on the jury?
Dustin: Every person's gonna have their view of what transpires over the next four weeks, and I'll be the first person to really get every side of the story. I'll be sort of the sponge to absorb it all and believe who I chose to believe. I think that I'll be the most clear-headed person voting for the winner in the end.
EW: And who are you rooting for? Amber?
Dustin: I am. She plays with her heart. I hope that with me gone now she will be able to play with her head even more. That was my intention getting Nick out, that she would play with her head more than her heart.
interview courtesy of: http://www.ew.com/ew/article/0,,20040769_20040772_20052376_2,00.html
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No one knows for sure if they are authentic...but they are making the rounds, for the revealing images go here.
Rick Cox is a Jericho fan who is also a survivalist. I realize this article is longer than some but I felt you needed a good idea of his background. Someone said, "This is the type of guy who should represent a new era of "survivalism".
If you have questions after reading this please leave a comment and I will forward all questions to Rick for a response.
1. Can you explain a bit more about what a WMD
RC - In the Army, a NBC (Nuclear Biological Chemical) Specialist is trained in virtually all facets of WMDs. This is done for two reasons, partly to recognize when a NBC/WMD attack is taking place (or has taken place), and partly to know what must be done to protect the rest of the US forces in the area so they can continue their mission. These troops are trained in how to calculate fallout patterns, half-life of fallout (to know when it's safe to move into or through an area affected by fallout), types of nuclear detonations, the various types of chemical agents as well as how they attack humans, and how to decontaminate personnel, vehicles, and equipment. The only area that was largely neglected in my day was biological as most folks figured that bio weapons were not being worked on and thus not a significant threat.
2. When and why did you become survival oriented?
RC - When I left Active Duty I became aware of just how lax the US had gotten in the area of Civil Defense. I was shocked that so little was being done to protect US citizens. As I was married and had 2 young daughters at the time I figured it was up to me to use the knowledge I'd gained in the Army to do everything I could to protect them. Over the years this feeling has done nothing but increase as my interaction with First Responders (Police, Fire, and EMS) has intensified.
3. What are First Responders concerned about and why?
RC - First Responders, like most folks, seem to have cycles when it comes to their concerns and priorities. Most of us are aware of the Y2K scare, and thank goodness that was more fizzle then meltdown, that was the first concern of theirs that I became aware of. There have been several others since. These days my impression is that Pandemic Flu is the big concern out there. Every conference I attend for my "day job" in telecommunications, where I support the Public Sector, has some briefing or training (sometimes several) related to Pandemic Flu. There are, IMO, several reasons for this. 1) We're overdue for a Pandemic Influenza. Historically these happen 3 times each century. In the 20th Century they happened in 1918/1919, 1958, and 1969 if memory serves. Typically they happen every 30 years or so. We're at nearly 40 years since the last one. Now, the ones in 58 and 69 were fairly mild with very little global effect. The one of 1918/1919 was
far more deadly and effected nearly every part of the globe. Small villages in Alaska and the Amazon Valley were nearly wiped out by that one, in an age when it took days or weeks to get to these places. Today I can get to virtually anyplace on the globe in 1 or 2 days. 2) Back then most folks either farmed, or lived near others who did, today virtually everyone gets all their food at grocery stores. Back then there was no true global economy, today speedbumps anywhere in the world will probably have an effect on prices or availability of goods virtually everywhere else. 3) The only truly effective measure we're probably going to have to fight a pandemic is quarantine. If that's the case government has several problems a) how to enforce the quarantine, b) how to keep enough cops etc. on the job to do such enforcement, c) how to get food, fuel, meds, etc. to the people they're responsible for in a quarantine environment and d) how to keep something
resembling an economy going during a large scale quarantine. So you can see that in a pandemic these folks are going to have their hands full. The same concerns would apply to some types of biological warfare agents that might be released by terrorists or rogue governments, Smallpox for example.
4. What kind of training does a First Responder get?
RC - Lots of variables here. Obviously police, fire, and EMS have different basic training for their jobs. Then there are specializations out there, SWAT for cops, EMT for the EMS folks, Haz-Mat for the fire folks, etc. These days there is a fair amount of training related to Pandemic Flu, distribution of meds, quarantine, etc. Again largely based on the job that each person would have in this situation, Ie cops for security, EMTs to distribute the meds, and fire/Haz-Mat to handle decontamination and such. I'm sure this sounds relatively simplistic, but this is in fact a very involved topic that we could discuss for quite some time. There are also variations based on one's location. In California they learn about earthquakes, mud slides, and forest fires. In Florida they learn about hurricanes. In Illinois they learn about tornados. In Rochester NY they learn about blizzards.
5. Is there a difference in being survival oriented as
opposed to believing in preparedness?
RC - Depends on who you ask I suppose. To me they can be used interchangably. Others get real nervous when the word "survival" is used, and some freak about "survivalist". In any event I figure it's all about mindset. Some folks, my darling wife included, don't want to think about what I call "What If?" So they don't dwell on what could happen during a natural disaster, a massive terror attack, a pandemic, or a global economic meltdown. Which, I humbly submit, is what leads to the horror stories that came out of New Orleans during and after Hurricane Katrina. Anytime we have people who are unable to deal with situations of delivery interruptions in food, fuel, and medicines we have a recipe for disaster. The more dependency a people has on the regular delivery of the items they need to survive the more at risk they are during any interruption. Being "survival oriented" or "prepared" means doing more to ensure that we are not at the mercy of some
supply chain to keep us alive with the necessities we all require. Some will say that having enough for 3 days is adequate. The current FEMA recommendation is 2 weeks if memory serves. Personally I try to keep at least 6 months of the basics on-hand at all times, and when I can manage it a full years worth.
6. What do we, in the United States, need most to
worry about when thinking about preparedness?
RC - Way too many variables for such a simple question. Different parts of the nation have different concerns, see question 4 for some examples of this. But there are other variables as well. Folks in a desert need more water and some way to keep things cool. Folks in Alaska have to deal with serious cold and lots of snow. So the needs of different areas will vary. For most people there are some decisions that must be made, and the sooner the better. What do they see as valid threats to themselves and their families? How long do they figure they may have to survive with little or no outside help? What skills and/or experience do they have? Are they planning for themselves, a nuclear family, an extended family, or a multi-family team? Are they in an urban, suburban, or rural environment? How good are the Emergency Management and First Responder folks in their area and/or state? All of these things will impact what folks need to do or plan for.
7. What do people not know about being prepared that
you think they should know?
RC - Another simple question with many possible answers. I've talked quite a bit about the threat of Pandemic Flu, so lets use that as an example for this question. I'd guess that most folks have some experience with the annual Flu viruses that we're at risk for every year. So most folks figure that a Pandemic Flu would behave in much the same way, you get sick, you rest, you feel like hell, you get better, you go on with your life. But a Pandemic like we saw nearly 100 years ago didn't act like that at all. It came in waves, 3 or 4 over a 2 year period. It affected as much as 40% of the population at any time. It killed young adults more than kids or old folks. It could kill in a day. And it went everywhere. Today it would spread like wildfire, so the % effected up front could be far greater. But more importantly from a survival perspective, we're far more at risk from what I call ripple effect. By that I mean the interruptions of critical
supplies. Knowing that quarantine is the only real tool we can use to slow this down I expect all ships to be barred from docking which will affect the delivery of food, fuel, etc. I expect trucks, trains, and planes to be locked down as well with similar if more widespread results. I expect companies to cease work as they can't get enough workers in to maintain productivity. For those companies that make things etc. they won't be able to get raw materials, nor will they be able to ship their completed products anywhere. So the economy will take a nose dive. Not only won't there be any food items in the stores, assuming people are able/allowed to shop anyway, there won't be any $$ coming in to buy anything. Which means the government will have to figure out how to get food etc. to the people. But, bear in mind that the Feds will be having problems of their own, with big chunks of people out sick or caring for others who are sick. They'll also
have folks who won't come to work due to fear of getting sick. They will have to find folks willing/able to drive the trucks and trains and planes to get the stuff delivered. Then they have to have folks (cops or National Guard) to protect this stuff and some means to get it distributed during a quarantine. Get the idea that might be tough to do? Now, my family and I, have no concerns with this ripple effect as we have ample food on hand, seeds to grow more, and the ability to hunt. Unless we get caught in that first wave of Pandemic Flu we should be just fine.
8. How much are we at risk for a biological attack?
RC - In my opinion this is the most dangerous threat we face. Whether it's a bio agent released by a terrorist organization such as Smallpox or a natural event such as Pandemic Flu, this is my main concern these days. I've already talked at length about Pandemic Flu, but I'll add a couple of things. 1) There is no vaccine for this, and there won't be for roughly 6 months after it hits us. Why? Because it will be a new mutation, or possibly a newly combined virus. So any vaccine will have to be created from scratch. 2) It could take as much as 6 months longer for enough vaccine to be produced to make a difference after its created. That means roughly 1 year from the time the new virus is identified before we could have a vaccine and enough to do any good. The worst will be over long before then.
RC - For an actual biological agent attack there are other issues. Smallpox is the most likely, and the worst case, when talking about bio agents as far as we know. I say that because we know the Soviets were working on Chimera viruses (artificial combinations of viruses, such as Smallpox and Ebola) prior to the implosion of the Soviet Union. We don't know if they were ultimately successful or not. Thus Smallpox, possibly a weaponized and vaccine resistant version, remains our main threat. The US stopped vaccinating for Smallpox back in the early 70s. Since then only some First Responders, hospital personnel, and military folks have been immunized. The Smallpox vaccination is thought to be good for roughly 10 years, after that it's doubtful that most folks will have any resistance to the disease. Which means that today most of the US population has little or no resistance to Smallpox, a disease which has killed more people in the world than all
of our wars combined, averaging 30% lethality. Many of those who survive end up horribly scarred and/or blinded because of their infection. There is no treatment for this, once you get it you just have to ride it out and hope for the best. Smallpox is very contagious, it has traveled the world many times when it took weeks to get anywhere, it infected folks in virtually every village at a time when many folks never once traveled outside their village/surrounding area during their entire lives. There are many ways that terrorists could spread Smallpox, with subways being the biggest risk.
RC - Many folks don't see Smallpox as a serious threat. The WHO did after all mount a global campaign to eradicate this disease, and they did a good job. There is no natually occuring Smallpox anywhere on the planet today. However, the Soviets used to mass produce the stuff as part of their WMD package, to the tune of more than 20 TONS each and every year for many years. A few ounces smuggled out and sold to the bad guys would give them the seed stock they need to make as much as they want. Then it could be distributed in many ways and could devastate the entire world.
I was born in Chicago, grew up in the near-West burbs, and left for the
Army before I turned 18. I spent 8 years on Active Duty (Scout,
Tanker, Telephone Systems Technician), followed by 6 years in the Reserves
(Military Intelligence as a German and then Russian linguist, and Tank
Crewman Trainer), and finished my military career with 8 years in the
Illinois National Guard (NBC [aka WMD] specialist, and Forward Observer).
I was a NCO (Sergeant) for 19 of my 22 year military career.
When I left Active Duty I began my Telecommunications career. I
also participate in various training exercises and drills, including
a huge one in St, Louis (with the St. Louis Cardinals hosting it) last
year that had roughly 5,000 volunteers acting as victims of a chemical
As a volunteer I've been active with my county Emergency Management
Agency for several years now. I've been on the county Search And Rescue
team since it was formed more than 2 years ago. I've been CERT
(Community Emergency Response Team) certified for nearly a year and serve on
the local Citizen's Corps Council. I'm also exploring the Infragard
organization as another way to give something back to my community. All of
this involvement gives me frequent insight into what First Responders
plan for, train for, and are concerned about.
I've been survival oriented since I left Active Duty back in 85. I had
already been trained as a NBC NCO, the sergeant with the most
knowledge of WMDs in a company sized unit. So I was very aware of the nuclear
threat posed by the Soviets. Once the Soviet Union imploded I had
hoped that I could relax and not maintain such focus on "What If?" but that
was not to be. Y2K, terrorism, Pandemic Flu, etc. have all taken
their place as threats to be on the watch for. I received even more
training with a Chemical unit in the Illinois National Guard and have done
more than a little study on my own. As I mentioned previously I'm often
in attendance at various conferences etc. for First Responders. So I
hear about their concerns, I see what products get the most attention,
and I talk to them every chance I get.
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The latest in the mainstream media's bizarre and destructive campaign against Ron Paul and his supporters - actually, more ABC's than any other medium - comes from the WABC New York and nationally syndicated ABC radio talk host, Mark Levin.As you can see[...]
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Just a quick note about me talking about the media disenfranchising of Ron Paul:1. The podcast has been up for almost a week - you can look at the page here (and then play the podcast), or just play the direct MP3 here ... about 15 minutes...2. And I'll[...]
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Yes, the new Rilo Kiley album comes out on Tuesday, so I could just wait until then to listen to it. But why should I spend my weekend in Jenny Lewis deprivation if I can stream Under the Blacklight right now? (It is, after all, one of my most-anticipated releases for August.) Thanks to Stereogum, I just discovered that you can now listen to the whole album on the band's MySpace page.
Of course, I was already loving "Silver Lining", and after just a few listens, I'm pretty giddy about the rest of the album too. It's incredibly energetic and eclectic, especially compared with past Rilo Kiley releases. I recommend the soulful '70s vibe of "Breakin' Up," as well as the title track. The only complaint I have so far is the lack of a good, moody ballad, but I need a few more listens to really make a judgment.
This week, Top Chef taught us that the best chef in the world isn't the Kentucky Fried Chicken man, Men's Warehouse suits don't breathe easily, and there are no winners in WAR.
Bunny Foo Foo stands alone on the balcony of the Fountainbleau looking at the ocean and trying to recover from the misogynistic disrespect she was shown in the last challenge. She had to cook in high heels with her cleavage almost kinda showing! Like some kind of cheap whore! As she tries to get through the post traumatic stress, the boy chefs convene in the kitchen and ignore Howie because he was such a dick to Saran. He pretends he doesn't notice.
Holy connoli! My tits are getting huge!
He tells us that he doesn't give a rats ass if no one likes him. He's willing to go home if he was the one who screwed up...Like the time you didn't finish plating before the buzzer? Or the time you lumped everything together before freezing? Or the time you....damn. We'll be here all day. Point is, you've boned it on almost every single challenge, and you were not once willing to go home. Just saying. He says he's worked really fucking hard and really fucking slowly to get to this fucking point in his life and fuck fuck asshole fuck. Classy.
Sara M is depressed about Saran, or as she calls her, her little "bunda", getting the axe. According to Wikipedia, a bunda is a butt. Sara M misses her little butt. Hmmm. Me thinks there was a hidden showmance here. The editors are concentrating on the wrong things this season. Like the cooking. Anyhoo, Sara is depressed, so she deals with it like every other heart broken girl in the world. She eats a bag of Doritos.
No reason to take it out on your big bunda.
Time for the Quickfire Challege! Todays Guest Judge is Daniel Boulud, who is most famous for his Manhattan restaurant, Daniel. He's also famous because he was slapped with a discrimination suit for not ever promoting anyone but white French men in his restaurant. There was a rally staged outside Daniel in NYC with minority workers holding up signs with cockroaches on them while singing "We Shall Overcome". There's no better way to repair a damaged reputation than by shilling your book on national TV. God bless America! Well except the part that's filled with Bangladeshis and Latin Americans. I am a horrible person who believes people never change, so I'm betting here and now he chooses three white men as his favorites in this challenge.
Alleged racism aside, the contestants wet themselves like Chef Boyardee himself was standing before them. Boulud's the best chef EVER!!! Hung is the only one who keeps his calm. He bows subserviently and asks if Daniel and Scar would like a table or if they'd like to sit at the sushi bar. Arigato!
I am excited to find out what today's product placement challenge will be. So far this season we've been given dog and pony shows for Coldstone Creamery, Rocco's Frozen Dinners, Bombay Gin, the Elk's Lodge, and of course, Not Kenmore. Lee Anne has to be running out of businesses to build challenges around by now. I've been wondering when the McDonald's Happy Meal Challenge would rear it's ugly head, and it looks like we're in luck! Well, McDonald's doesn't need the press, so instead we get what looks like the Canadian version of Fuddruckers, Red Robin Burgers! Dammit! I wanted to see what kind of toy Howie would have come up with.
Kids get a free packet of Cave Man Back Wax with every meal! It's never too early to start!
Howie's psyched for this challenge because Boulud was the first Chef to make a hundred twenty dollar burger. Damn you, France, and your market inflation! What are you gonna attack next, the HoHo? Hands off my binge food, ya stinkin Nellies! Scar tells them that every Happy Meal counts today, because no one will be getting immunity. Yaaaay! That means the people with the obvious edge here (Howie) will still have a chance of getting the boot. I am gonna celebrate with a Happy Meal of my own. Or five. Hell, I won't stop til I have every Legion of Heroes Action Figure there is! BRB.
OK, I'm back. And just to let you know, the lady at the drivethru window asked me if I wanted to sub my fries for apples. No, not apple pie. Apples. I threw one of my Cokes back through the window at her and sped off. What the hell is this world coming to?
Back to the show. Turns out they are making gourmet burgers, which from the looks of it means nasty nasty nasty shit. Dung, never one to miss an opportunity to abuse a sea creature, pounds shrimp into a sick looking goo while Troll Patch (of course) repeats his fish sausage that won him the BBQ Challenge. Sara M is going with crab, and CJ's blending up scallops. Bunny Foo Foo has the same reaction to her fellow chefs as I do. Who the hell wants to eat a gooey mashed fish burger? That kitchen must smell like a birthing room right now.
Baldhawk is also gonna go against the grain with a breakfast burger, and Tre is putting together a surf and turf burger. Guest Judge Boulud tastes Dung's shrimp burger with tempura flakes first, and when he calls it juicy, Hung giggles like a pre-op finally getting the go ahead to make the change. Ugh. Shut up, Dung.
Memories of a Gaysha
Boulud wasn't as into Troll Patch's scallop, shrimp and sea bass burger because it had too much bread, but Sara M evened out his palate by using no bread at all. Lettuce is not a bun, woman! I don't care how depressed you are! Her little buns are gone, and she's paying Saran some respect. Awwwww, little bunda! Come back!
He loved CJ's salmon mousse and shrimp burger, but when he got to Foo Foo's white trashy ground chuck patty melt, he was like WTF? Bet you wish you were cooking in high heels and a wonderbra now. Tre is smiling like he's got this thing in the bag with his surf and turf burger, but it's really just a steak and shrimp sandwich, so I am psyched at the prospect of seeing the smile wiped off his face. GOTTAHAVEGROUNDPROTEIN.
I almost lost my Maccy D's when Baldhawk presented a tuna burger topped with an egg (???), but Boulud seemed to like it. It's official. French people will eat anything. Howie has decided that he will try to flatter the best chef EVER by making a truffle burger just like Boulud did at Daniel. Ah, stroking the ego. Please don't let him get away with this. The best possible outcome will be a slap in the face and a shouted "ARROGANT AMERICAN PIG!" I am hopeful when Boulud gives Howie this look as he chews...
Are you warm?
...but no dice. He loves it! To seal the deal, Howie spews racial slurs at Hung. I smell a promotion! The bottom two are Tre, because he just made a plain ole sandwich, and Sara M, because she was bundaless.
His top three are Howie, Baldhawk, and CJ, who made a "firework of flavor". Yay white men! Oh wait, to prove he's no racist, he gives Dung the fourth place pity prize. Yay white men and Asian trannies! CJ wins! Scar tells him that he may not be getting immunity, but he'll be getting a really useful advantage. Height! Congrats!
The Elimination Challenge will be the infamous Restaurant Wars Challenge. Oh, man. This is awesome. I love when they compete to see who sucks less! CJ gets to pick his team first because he won the Quickfire, and he chooses Foo Foo, Troll Patch, and Tre. This leaves Howie, Sara M, Hung and Baldhawk together. HAHA! This could very well turn out to be my favorite episode ever. Hung tells us that he's worried, because he doesn't think that Howie and Sara M can be good team players. When did this fool grow up? Not buyin' it.
This year, the chefs are given two identical Top Design like spaces right next to each other, and they also have to choose positions this time. Head chef, front of house, DESIGN (this was a really bad dub. Could Scar not master the word?), and sous chef. Troll Patch holds a pen and paper, but doesn't write anything down. Goody two shoes. And camera men, could you please at least make an effort to get CJ in the shots?
They will get seven hundred bucks for food and a whopping twenty five hundred for tableware and decor. It seems a little unfair that one person from each team could go home for having a hideous sense of style, and I am worried for Baldhawk. Sure enough, he volunteers for front of house with Hung. Sara and Howie will be working in the kitchen, and when BH asks who wants to be head chef, Sara snaps it up. Howie says he's ok with it. The only way they are gonna get ahead is to get along. Riiight. You can do this, Cave Man. Don't sweat it, kid. No really. Stop.
The next morning, the chefs are abuzz with nervous energy. Troll Patch is gonna wear a suit! In the Miami heat! He sneaks it under his uniform so the other team can't see how seriously he's taking this. OY. He says he's gonna bring out the big guns and surprise everyone! You know what would be really surprising? If you served lots and lots of fish.
Everyone knows Dung's team is screwed, including them, so they do their best to listen to each other. By talking over each other a lot. Whatever works. CJ's team is naming their restaurant April, after his sister (AWWW!), and ole One Nut describes it as "new American cuisine with a contemporary vibe". New and contemporary in one sentence! You go, pioneer!
Team Dung's restaurant will be called The Garage, and they are going for a "contemporary American bistro". Wow. Contemporary is the new Modern. The chefs scurry around the fresh market and call each other on cell phones that the camera men are sure to get as many closeups of as possible. Hey, you think Red Robin's gonna spring for two restaurant remodels?
Talk to Hung as long as you'd like for free! T MOBILE MYFAVES!! (sound of me stomping on my Sidekick)
Team Garage will be preparing tuna tartare, mushroom risotto, and braised lamb shank which I guess is contemporary, but Team April will be making crusted beef tenderloin, grouper, shellfish with artichoke hearts and corn and truffle custard with sea scallops, which is new and contemporary. See the difference?
Sara M and Howie are being very nice to each other, which is kinda freaking me out. Howie is too busy concentrating on his risotto to be a jerk. He has been making risotto for a decade, and he makes it different than every other chef makes it. Uh-oh. Tre is concentrating hard too, and it's pretty cool to see some life in the guy. He actually RUNS through the kitchen and his facial expressions change a couple of times.
Who are you?
Daddy Tom comes around to check on progress. He warns Howie that it's easy to screw up risotto, but he has the most confidence in Garage because the members of that team have the most restaurant experience. There's a reason they're more bitter and worn down. He thinks that April should be carving their tenderloin tableside instead of cooking each piece separately, but there is no clear front runner. The real shit's gonna go down when they have to present. As time nears, Dung starts freaking out and slamming dishes away and running like a madman. Sara tells him to calm down, and he slams some more stuff. There's the boygirl we all know and love!
The Judges visit April first, which of course freaks the team out. Troll Patch, in his shocking suit and a face full of Howie sweat, welcomes them and then almost drops a deuce when three two tops walk in at the same time. Dude. The busses have arrived. Brace yourself. He starts them off by presenting the amuse douche, which is an oyster with ginger and watermelon grantia. Daddy Tom and Boulud agree that the oyster has no flavor, and to make it worse, Scar's bread plate is dusty. Oh, man, if I ever had to wait on Scar I would quit. She is notorious for being a pain in the ass.
The first course is the seared scallop over corn and black truffle custard, which would be awesome if custard was supposed to look like scrambled eggs.
Add a side of bacon for a dollar more!
Tom and Boulud aren't buyin' it. Next up is the seared grouper and shellfish with basil pistou and artichoke hearts. It looks pretty, but the Judges can't eat it because they don't have silverware. Ouch. This is already getting painful to watch. Troll Patch comes into the kitchen dripping sweat and nervously cleaning his ear with his finger. EW! I dare you to serve Scar with that hand. He's freaking out, so Tre sends Bunny Foo Foo out to swing her pony tail back and forth and serve the third course.
She presents the gorgonzola crusted tenderloin with the pizazz of a Junior Leaguer selling jam at a Christmas Fair, and Ted Allen just looks happy he doesn't have to stare at Troll Patch's Men's Warehouse suit again. The Judges seem to buy it, until they taste Tre's burnt potatoes. Cut to a "real person" dissing the potatoes. Oh, man. Everyone's going home.
The mango lemongrass and sake sorbet and the apple tart tartin go over well, but me thinks it's a little late. Over at The Garage, Baldhawk is kissing ass out front and being a total bitch in the back. He tells the waiters they're too slow and snaps his fingers while he derides them. Oh no he didn't! Waiters REVOLT!
Troll Patch warned Bunny Foo Foo that scented candles would annoy the guests, but unfortunately Baldhawk didn't overhear that conversation. A bitchy "real person" queen takes his off the table and covers it with a napkin on the floor and Ted Allen immediately starts griping about that awful smell. Daddy Tom asks for the candle on the table to be removed. Why is the Restaurant War always a disaster? First up is Hung's tuna tartare, and it looks like a boyle.
The Neosporin Challenge
The Judges love it! Fifteen minutes later, Scar is eating her arm. This woman needs to stop smoking before judging every single challenge. She barely let Boulud have a bite of any of the burgers. Daddy Tom's getting impatient. What the hell's taking so long? You guessed it, Howie!! He said he cooks risotto different than any other chef, and he wasn't kidding. He's stewing it in huge pots like he's making mashed potatoes, and even I know that's wrong. Dung tells us that Howie's a big fat sweaty idiot. Agreed.
None of the Judges are impressed by the mushroom risotto, but no one points out that it is a mushy mess. Seriously, ew. Take a look at the "risotto" and then below it look at the mashed potatoes under the tenderloin.
My Happy Meals are sounding pretty good right now. Admit it.
The lamb shank isn't too popular either. Too overly rich dishes in a row. Woops. Baldhawk makes the mistake of asking the stupid bitchy queen "real person" his opinion, and he says the lamb tastes like metal and "if that's a vegetable medley, I'm a monkey."
Ick. Monkeys are cute. Get this real person uggo off my tv.
Have I mentioned that I HATE "real people"? The Judges liked that Baldhawk was doing tableside service, but the crepe was yet another dish that was way too rich. Man. How are they gonna pick a looza? Team April chills with a bottle of wine when all is said and done. That's the right idea, team! Get a buzz on before Judge's Table! The Garage is not as relaxed, mostly due to Baldhawk queening out about getting fucked over by the waitstaff. Yeah, that was your problem. The food was served, dude. It just sucked. He is afraid he will get sent home for not cooking one single thing, but in this case, I think that might just save his ass.
The Judges have their work cut out for them tonight. Scar starts by telling us that there was an "undercover blogger" in the crowd of diners. My guess is Snotty Uggo Monkey Man, because bloggers are horrible, horrible people. I'm wrong (about the primate). It was his quiet, pretty friend, which makes me hate Uggo even more. This jerk was totally brought along for a free meal and was the nastiest brat of the entire night. I'll bet he asked for a doggie bag. Cheap bastard. The blog was written by Andrea Strong. Check it out, it's a pretty interesting read.
The Judges all agree that April wins hands down in the decor department. What chef in his right mind puts scented candles in a restaurant? Then the editors cut to Baldhawk. LOL, editors. Love ya. Hung's tartare beat Howie's overcooked, heavy risotto. Ted Allen said after taking two bites of the mush and getting banged by a waiter, he could barely walk. TMI, Queer Eye.
They rag on Tre's burnt potatoes for a bit before moving on to service. Troll Patch was a nervous wreck in a cheap suit, and Baldhawk wears highwaters. Case closed. Back in the holding room, BH is nervously repeating that he served his ass off over and over again. He's still red in the face and stroking the hand he cut off one of the slow ass waiters isn't soothing him. Scar calls in Team April, but she starts by telling them that they didn't win. Suckas!
Scar focuses her eyes as much as possible and reads from the Strong review. "April's decor was lovely..." Troll Patch tells her to stop right there and it's a great review! Hardy har. She continues"... but the host had a sweating problem. Get thee some Right Guard." LOL, mystery blogger! CJ guffaws. Troll Patch is not amused, but takes full responsibility for the front of the house. Strong went on to write that the oyster was topped with a watermelon slurpee, and CJ agrees and takes the fall. He also agrees that Troll Patch has a sweating problem. HAHAHAAAA. Troll Patch: way not amused.
Tre's smoked potatoes were "overly aggressive", which I think means BURNT and CHARRED. Where's Gail Simmons when you need her? Daddy Tom tries to get them to turn on each other by asking if Troll Patch should go home, but they all defend him and refuse to act like children. Nice work, Team April! CJ finishes by saying the only perfect restaurant is Boulud's. Ok, that's enough, asslick. Leave now.
I'll be here all week!
Team Garage is brought to the guillotine, and Sara M proudly cops to volunteering herself for Head Chef. Daddy Tom snarks "that was brave." Ha. Who chose those stank ass vanilla candles? Baldhawk admits it, but says that there were hardly any candles in the store that weren't scented and besides, he has a week sense of smell. God this guy is such a wuss. Ted Allen points out that the other team shopped at the same store, and Baldhawk stays silent and raises his eyebrows like he's about to beat a waiter to death.
Mystery Blogger wrote that the black table cloths were "very Billy Idol. And I don't want to eat off Billy Idol". OMG I am so bookmarking this woman. Baldhawk doesn't answer. He just gives a snotty look. Daddy Tom claps his hands and tells him that designs an important part of a restaurant, ya bitchy priss. They give Hung props for his tartare, which of course makes him giggle and bow, but then they say it wasn't perfect and he immediately looks like he wants to cry. Love it.
Howie's risotto was mushy and gummy, "like mac and cheese with rice". The Cave Man stays true to form and shouts that he's made risotto for plenty of chefs! He lists cream as one of his ingredients, and Tom says that you're not even supposed to use cream. Howie shouts and sweats and says he didn't taste anything gummy or crappy. Sorry, you suck. Thanks for yelling, though.
Queer Eye asks why they would make so much heavy food on a hot night, and Baldhawk raises those brows.
Don't blame me. I didn't cook anything.
Sara said she was worried about the heaviness. Really? Then why did you make a braised lamb shank? Howie says that he doesn't give a crap what season it is. If he sees something heavy on the menu, he's gonna eat it, cuz that's what turns him on. Gross, ew, and LOL. Queer Eye thinks that they were only thinking about their own dishes and not the overall flow of the meal, and Sara snaps "I disagree with you." This is her response to everything, and it's starting to grate on my nerves. You not agreeing doesn't make it less true, a hole. Hung keeps his mouth shut and bows a lot. Who's been coaching her? I'm impressed.
The Judges are left alone, and they have some trouble picking the suckiest playa. Baldhawk is tacky and made excuses, Howies gummy risotto bit it, and Tre's burnt potatoes were the worst of all. Then you have Troll Patch, who's just....gross. Tom says that he thinks the final eight chefs are waaaay more talented than this. Scar looks at him as asks "reeeealy?" Hilarious.
Baldhawk and Troll Patch are both brought back to the table. They both boned it and...NO ONE'S GOING HOME!! PSYCH! Wow. They pulled this old trick out of the bag again, huh? The restaurants will be open again tomorrow night, and they will get another chance. ARGH. That better not mean we have to put up with this caca for another hour! Come on, Lee Anne! This is bullshit!
Ah well, as Tre puts it, "this is deflating, but you live to fight another day." Uh, thanks, Grasshopper. Since all the chefs lose, they are forced to take home Boulud's book: "Letters to a Young Chef: Don't be a Minority". Better luck next time.
This disaster has been brought to you by Red Robin Burgers.