Chatting Practice Episode 5: How Do You Eat a Banana?

Welcome to another edition of Chatting Practice: A Payday Podcast, where this week’s most important topic is how to eat a banana. You want fiscal cliff talk? Not here, my friends–only the nation’s most pressing issues are discussed during this podcast.

Before we jump into the rundown of this week’s podcast…some news:

The Padres announced that both Jose Valentin and Willie Blair will be returning to the Fort Wayne coaching staff for the 2013 season as manager and pitching coach, respectively. 2012 hitting coach Jacque Jones will be with the Double-A San Antonio Missions, and former major leaguer Morgan Burkhart will make his foray into professional baseball coaching as the TinCaps hitting coach in 2013. Burkhart, a St. Louis native, played for both the Red Sox and Royals during his major-league tenure. Most recently he was the manager of the Windy City Thunderbolts, an independent league team. For the second straight year, Fort Wayne will have a coaching staff with three former major leaguers, a rarity at this level of minor league baseball. I am certainly excited to have both Valentin and Blair back for next year, and look forward to getting to know Burkhart, too. Everyone at Parkview Field wishes Jones the best of luck as he moves on to Double-A.

Last week I found myself in Bryan, Ohio, as I was doing a speaking engagement as a part of the TinCaps Speakers Bureau. For those of you that followed the 2012 version of the TinCaps, you’ll know that star pitcher Matt Wisler is from Bryan. Well, I was headed out there on a Wednesday and Sunday night as I’m winding down my day I get a text message around 9PM and wonder, “Who could this be?” As it turned out, it was Matt Wisler. He and his parents attended the meeting of the Bryan Kiwanis club, and Matt even shared a few thoughts with those who were in attendance. It was great to catch up with Matt, who has been working out this winter and will be headed to the Padres spring training facility in Arizona once we get into January.


Onto the podcast!

We first went to the Vandelay Industries Hotline (TM) to talk to TinCaps Vice President of Finance, Brian Schackow, to talk about proper banana-eating etiquette. I had been eating a banana in Michael Limmer’s (my co-host) office, and I, as per usual, did not eat the last bite of my banana. I just don’t like having to get too close to the bottom of the fruit, and I don’t want to touch the actual banana itself. I think the peel serves as a nice wrapper. Michael disagrees, but I had seen Brian eating a banana in a fashion similar to my preferred method, so we brought him on the line to talk about that.

He joins us at the 2:08 mark.

At the 6:00 mark, we delve into the complicated world of how we prefer to eat an apple. Side to side or up and down? You won’t find this analysis anywhere else, folks.

At the 10:00 mark, Michael jumps into pronunciations of certain words. We’d like to know…how do you pronounce “coupon”? Que-pon or Coo-pon? How do your say Volvo? Vull-vo or Vahl-vo? We enlist the help of the online Merriam-Webster pronunciation guide for advice.

Things really got heated when we reached the word smorgasboard. Michael had always pronounced it “smorgas-borg”, while I had always used “smorgas-board”. Merriam took my side.

At 16:30, I describe how the conference realignment in the world of college sports has me entirely befuddled. 

At the 23:00 mark, Michael starts to talk about internet memes. (At points pronounced me-me, may-may and meh-may…it’s meem, by the way). We discuss the top 12 memes of 2012, which included:

An unimpressed McKayla Maroney:


Paul Ryan Gosling:


At the 32:00 mark, Michael challenges me in the Odd Food Challenge (TM) to eat a “Chex-mix-type” bag of “Wasabi Explosion”, which was not too spicy, despite what my face showed:



On a roll...

On a roll…

At the 37:30 mark, I debut my food item to Michael…and let me tell you, he was not enthusiastic about it:

300% HOTTER! (than what?)

300% HOTTER! (than what?)

The Tijuana Mama Pickled sausage is labeled as “300% Hotter”, although it doesn’t say what it’s hotter than…a bit of an important distinction, if you ask me. So I called the company that makes the product to find out. The woman who answered the phone had never eaten this version of the product,  but she said that on a scale of 1-17.5 (I supplied the rubric), the regular sausage was a 10. So that means this was a 30 out of 17.5…look out!

"It's a very dry meat...If you could imagine a dried out dog."

“It’s a very dry meat…If you could imagine a dried out dog.”

We later went down to Brian Schackow’s office to have him try a bite of the pickled sausage:

"Will I regret this?"

“Will I regret this?”



Thanks for listening, folks! If you have any suggestions, please send them to or tweet me @MikeCouzens.

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