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Friesen Point Podcast 121: Dan Drees (and Brackets!)

Today, I sit down with long-distant regular guest Dan Drees for a riveting chat about Asher Roth, geopolitics, and of course The Side Dish Bracket.

Also, the voting is now open for all match-ups in the Edible 8! Leave your votes for all 4 contests in the comments, and as always, don’t forget to Season Your Reasons.

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18 thoughts on “Friesen Point Podcast 121: Dan Drees (and Brackets!)”

  1. Da Bar over Breads on the backs of variety and the ability to add meats.

    ‘Tater Salad, just because you called it Ron White and it took me an extra 2 seconds to figure out why a Blue Collar comic was on the bracket.

    Fries, just based on what I’d prefer at the moment. When you put potatoes against themselves it’s hard to pick.

    Mac & Cheese, again as a personal preference, and it has the best chance of knocking off fries in the semi-finals.

  2. Salad Bar, Chips and salsa, Fries (but in a near upset, au gratin is a strong competitor, but tater tots and curly fries would not be denied,) and mac and cheese.

    A few notes:

    1. The bread and pasta salad match up was seeded completely backwards, bread should have been the three seed, bread over pasta salad is no upset, and I say that as a man that loves his pasta salad.

    2. Potato salad never stood a chance against Chips and Salsa, I’m personally not a fan to begin with, but they’re a strong competitor, and, like rice, which I would have said was the prohibitive favorite going into this tournament, you have to think they’ll be looking for a better draw next time.

    3. I took mac and cheese in what should, in most years, be a rout, but I have a sneaking suspicion that this winter’s weather will play a factor in this match-up. Even the most adamant supporters of mac and cheese have to admit it’s been a great year for soup.

    4. Look for fries to make easy work of whomever it meets in the next round, but don’t sleep on the cold side in the final, salad bar is an especially tough match-up for fries these days. Those are two sides with a lot of different looks to throw at you.

    5. I’d like to see an international division of this competition in the near future. I feel like the pacific division would have something to say about the outcome of this tournament.

    1. Nick, I gotta say, I love this level of analysis. Here are my thoughts on your thoughts:

      1) The methodology used by the Selection committee are a well-guarded secret that will not be revealed, even under threat of a Freedom of Information Act request. Just trust that appropriate deliberation occurred.

      2) I think you and I both made the mistake of overestimating Potato Salad. Looking back, they didn’t have that difficult a schedule this season, and were probably made to look better than they were based on shitty opponents. The public was quite clear that they were very unimpressed with PS, even to the point of it just making the Edible 8 because it was “not as shitty as Cole Slaw.”

      3) A great year for Soup? Very much so, but really what is Mac and Cheese but a slightly improved Soup that doesn’t suffer from the problem of being associated with Vegetables? Plus, M&C doesn’t have to wrestle with the question of what to do with all the excess broth. M&C’s broth immediately becomes Cheese Dip.

      4) You are probably right that Salad Bar is the contender in the Cold Division that has the best chance of taking down whatever Hot throws out, but I think the season comes into play again. The middle of February is not the time when the public is rallying behind cold items. I think this is going to be a heavy factor.

      5) You underestimate my disrespect for international foods. I could theoretically put together this bracket, but it would not be a pleasant jaunt for me. Don’t expect it any time soon.

  3. 1. Salad bar over bread. I use my bread to sop up the delicious goodness that my salad leaves behind on my plate, therefore bread is like the side of a side.

    2. Here’s where my Midwest bias plays into the equation. Potato salad over chips and dip. Once again I feel like chips plays the role of bread here again, where it’s not an ideal side item for things. While chips have a deep bench, potato salad have the big men under center and that’s where it really counts in crunch time. Shaq and his three rings would agree with me.

    3. Fries wins by an astounding 23 points over non fried potatoes, as they were too soft on defense, pun intended.

    4. Lastly Soup over Mac and cheese in controversial fashion. I have contention with the selection committee over the time of year of the tournament, as it is still cold outside so soup has the advantage. Much like Peyton Manning, Mac and cheese performs better in warm weather, and I feel they may have been out in a compromising position based on bracketing.

    1. I agree with all of what you’re throwing out here, except for one point. I can’t, in good conscience, sit here and allow you to say that Mac and Cheese performs better in warm weather. M&C has the range to be satisfying in either warm or cold temps, and in fact, I think what you’re really trying to say is that “Soup is not very good in warm weather, while M&C is.”

      1. Good point, but I see your liberal cheese bias is trying to change my vote. I suppose if I were building a franchise Mac and cheese would be a better cornerstone for the future, however it’s a one and done bracket and you have to play the hot hand. The quicker more immediately satisfying side. I’m sticking with soup.

  4. Now on to business.

    Salad v Bread: Actually one of the hardest ones I’ve had to deliberate. If I have any control over the situation, I need not make this decision, as they pair so well together. I now grasp the idea of two brothers fighting against each other in the civil war. However, there is a distinction I must make. When I have a salad, I always want bread. When I have bread, I don’t always feel the need to pair it with a salad. If I could put some grilled chicken on a salad I’d go the other way, but as it stands, Bread wins.

    Chips v. Potato Salad: Something I have never looked at as a side vs something I admittedly have never tasted. Gonna cast a spite vote for Potato Salad. Fruits are delicious you plebeians.

    Soup v. Mac: I have organized my life in such a way that twice a week I have soup for lunch. I do this to ensure at least some regularity of vegetables in my diet, plus its easy on the wallet. I love soup. But not as a side. I cannot go against my childhood. I got the blues. Mac.

    Fries v. Potatoes: I’m gonna be real clear about this, and parents are encouraged to take their children out the room for what I’m about to say. Fuck fries. Mashed fucking potatoes are the consummate side dish. No doubt in my mind. I challenge anybody leaning fries to think about what their favorite meal is. For me it’s a goddamn tbone steak, and if you’re eating fries and not mashed potatoes with a goddamn tbone steak, you need science. Mashed potatoes over fries, Mashed potatoes over all other potatoes. MFKING taters. Far out.

    1. This appeared to be an amazingly powerful and emotional voting session for you. I applaud your openness and fairness, for example not just voting for Soup out of your admitted closeness with it.

      1. I had to take a moment to consider the ramifications of my words, but I thought WWMSD? and promptly had sex with a man.

  5. Now that I am properly whelmed, here are my choices. Chips/Dip (Begrudgingly–still think this is overrated), Salad Bar (trying to drop some poundz), Fries (trying to maintain weight), Mac N Cheese (my namesake)

  6. Chips and Dip, despite my enjoyment of Tater Salad’s WTF episode last week. Fries may be upset down the road, but not on this day. Soup over Mac and Cheese, just a personal preference, but I’m not upset by the fact that Mac will likely move on. I’m a big fan of bread, but Salad HAS to win this matchup because nobody says at the end of a meal, “Damn, I wish I hadn’t filled up on that salad bar.” But people say that about the bread all the time. Bread can’t advance when it creates this kind of disappointment in your decision making as often as it does.

  7. I stand with potato salad but will also throw my support for bread, mac and cheese, and non fried potatoes

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