Heartland Radio 2.0 Ep. 34 – “Soaking The Boys”

On today’s show, the guys chat a little bit more about Bird Box and the absurdity of 45,000,000+ accounts viewing it, Bill Murray being an incredible human being, whether or not actors and actresses read their terrible reviews, a Dutch astronaut accidentally calling 911 from the International Space Station, and discuss what people have been eating for the weight loss challenge. Todd wants to know if the guys could change the ending of any movie, what they would change and how. They also answer some listener questions including what guilty pleasures they would give up which sends the conversation off the rails a bit, and if they could play for any NFL team, which they would choose. As always, the guys each send in some Friday Bangerz to help send you into the weekend. It’s a wild one, come and have a good time with us.

This episode features @toddmccomas, @PatMcAfeeShow, @Digz, @nickmaraldo, @tyschmit, @BostonConnr, @HeyGorman, @VivalaZito, and @evanfoxy.

The First Reviews Are In.. True Detective is BACK

IndieWire“Let’s get this out of the way: “True Detective” Season 3 is good. Whether or not you believe the first season to be an untouchable classic or an overrated but well-acted cop show, Nic Pizzolatto’s new episodes are a big step up from a second season as muddled and meaningless as that water stain above Vince Vaughn’s bed. With strong performances all-around — and a flat-out remarkable turn from Mahershala Ali — HBO’s third season benefits from reliable genre elements, a compelling central story, and aesthetics as lush as they are eerie.”


YES. “Engaging without being enraging, and solid if not spectacular.” Granted, this is only a single review, and I didn’t do much digging to see if any other critics received any screeners, but this is promising. The teaser trailer for season 3 was great, looking more in line with the aesthetics and story structure of season 1, and getting as far away from the muddled mess that many thought season 2 was. Nic Pizzolatto probably bit off more than he could chew with season 2; super convoluted, so many storylines, an odd “mystery,” and a reluctance to let anyone else into the writers room. For season 3, he/HBO brought in David Milch (the creator of Deadwood) to help pen the season and four different directors with other HBO credits under their belts will be helming two episodes each. But the best move, in my humble opinion, was using this season as a star vehicle for Mahershala Ali. He’s one of the hottest, most accomplished stars working in Hollywood right now, and outside of his Oscar winning turn in Moonlight, this looks like it’s going to give him the kind of exposure his career surely deserves. Multiple timelines with a story spanning over three decades, an unsolved murder, and years and years of deep seated guilt, True Detective appears to be getting back to the basics.

The best part about this, is it stands alone. You don’t need any previous viewing history to jump in. Every season is an anthology and stands alone on it’s own legs. No head nods to previous seasons, no loose threads that connects everything. Starting January 13th, everyone is going to be on the same page. We’re heading into the doldrums of January here, and there’s a lot of dogshit that’s going to be on your TV for the next few months until it starts to get warmer. Be thankful that we’re getting a bonafide prestige drama right out of the gates in 2019. 

The best part: If this sucks (highly unlikely), after eight weeks, we just move on and wait until Thrones returns for its final season. No matter which way you slice it, True Detective season 3 is going to be the best TV show available in January. It’ll blow every network TV show out of the water, and likely will be the best show on premium cable to start the new year. If these early critic reviews are any indication (I checked a couple more, glowing reviews from everyone that’s seen it so far), we’re in for one hell of a season that should restore the good name of True Detective and wipe out the bad taste that season 2 left in most people’s mouths, and I for one, couldn’t be more excited. Let me know if youse guys are as excited for this as I am. Buckle up, it’s gonna be a good’un.


Heartland Radio 2.0 Ep. 33 – Happy New Year

On today’s show, the guys discuss what they did on New Year’s Eve, chat about the weight loss competition that is finally here and how all the participants are feeling now that plumping season is over, and question why “A Christmas Story,” gets the 24 hour marathon treatment on Christmas. They also dive into some world news including TSA getting rid of dogs with pointy ears because they scare kids, a Louisiana police chief posting on Facebook that his department had seized meth infected with the Zika virus, and an Indianapolis woman being wounded by a celebratory gun shot on New Year’s Eve. Todd wants to know who in the office the guys would choose if they were to be in a buddy cop movie and what the name and premise would be, and the guys answer some listener questions including whether they would want to live in the Bird Box, World War Z, or A Quiet Place universe, and make their selections for the 2019 death pool. Happy New Year everybody, come and have a good time with us.

This episode features @toddmccomas, @PatMcAfeeShow, @Digz, @nickmaraldo, @tyschmit, @BostonConnr, @HeyGorman, @VivalaZito, and @evanfoxy, and closes with “Hook,” by Blues Traveler.

Bird Box Is The Most Watched Netflix Original Ever


(That’s a high concept Bird Box joke)

That’s a lot of fucking streams over a one week period. Granted, those 45,000,000+ streams probably came from about 1,500 Netflix accounts, but those are still startling numbers. It’s taken over the cultural zeitgeist, and chances are you’ve seen several memes related to Bird Box. The first hour/hour fifteen or so are incredible. Straight balls to the walls intensity that you can’t take your eyes off of (that’s another Bird Box joke). In my personal opinion, it loses quite a bit of steam after that. That’s not to say this isn’t a must watch. It’s on Netflix, it’s probably better than half the bullshit you have saved in your queue, and Sandy Bullock brings THE NOISE. She’s incredible in this. The nonlinear storyline kind of diminishes some of the potential surprises in the movie, and bouncing back and forth between timelines ends up telegraphing the ending quite a bit.


I have a feeling quite a few people will share this sentiment. Again, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t watch it. You probably should, it’s well worth the two hours, again there’s a lot of bullshit out there. The best thing about Bird Box has undoubtedly been the influx of memes it has created. Everyone knows I love my memes. Big time meme guy. And I will be forever thankful to Bird Box for bringing us this treasure trove of memes.

Let me know what you thought of Bird Box, and whether or not you enjoyed the way it ended, and don’t be afraid to send me your best Bird Box memes.


Who’s On Your Christmas Mount Rushmore?


The sweatshirt above is something that we cooked up and that is still available now. That’s a very solid Mount Rushmore, no question about it. Several OG’s of the Christmas season resting up there, but I think there are a few glaring omissions that need to be addressed and added here. 

The Wet/Sticky Bandits

Obviously it’s damn near impossible to condense the best moments of Harry and Marv into one video. It simply can’t be done. Joe Pesci and Daniel Stern carry this fucking movie every step of the way. I’ve seen Home Alone 1 and 2 no less than 5,000 times each. To the point where I can very nearly recite both films front and back. I’ll go to my grave saying that the “SUCK BRICK KID,” scene is one of the top 10 milestones of cinema in the last 100 years.

Couple this with Joe Pesci having to record 100’s of takes each time they were on set because he couldn’t stop saying fuck, and you have two of the cultural foundations of Christmas.

Clark Griswold

Same deal, I’ve watched Christmas Vacation too many times to count, laugh just as hard at the same scenes each and every time. Chevy Chase’s personal actions aside (he’s been a raging dickhead for the last 10-15 years give or take), you simply can’t replace Clark Griswold with anyone else and have the same movie. The rants, the sarcasm, the situations he finds himself in.. I imagine this is what Christmas is like for a lot of families that have relatives come out of town and have to host everyone at their home.

Clark also nails the pervasive feeling you have towards your coworkers when working in a cube or office setting. Get the fuck out of my face, get me the fuck out of here, I don’t need to deal with anymore of your bullshit for a week or two.

Also, big shoutout to Brian Doyle-Murray for playing a pitch perfect asshole in this movie and being the reason we get one of the best Christmas rants in the history of the holiday.

I want go too far into this, but Cousin Eddie is simply a bonus. More caricature than character, but everyone can find a small piece of someone in their family through him. That one person who drives everyone batshit insane and they’re such a good time that you can’t really complain too much, but you can’t wait to get them the fuck out of your hair.

Christmas Vacation hasn’t aged in 20+ years, and Clark Griswold is the straw that stirs the drink, so he’s got to be here.

George Bailey

May take some heat from this, but I don’t give a shit. I watch It’s A Wonderful Life every year on Christmas. It’s a tale as old as time, one that I won’t rehash here. Just know that George Bailey is the GOAT. Jimmy Stewart flexes nuts so hard in this film it’s almost sickening. Getting pissed on by Mr. Potter constantly, contemplating suicide until Clarence Odbody, Angel 2nd Class, decides to mosey on down from heaven to save his sorry ass. It’s truly a rags-to-riches feel good story that’s sure to warm your black heart around the holiday season. Not to ruin anything, but it also spawned one of my favorite SNL skits of all time.

Also, the film is out there remastered in color.. don’t be a schmuck, watch it in black and white the way it was intended to seen.

Willie T. Soke

Billy Bob Thornton playing a boozed up, scumbag mall Santa Claus is pure gold. I don’t know if I could act like this big of a prick if I tried, and William Robert Thornton gives everyone a master class in how to do so. I could repost damn near every clip from this movie, because they’re all an absolute hoot, but the real gut busters are coming from Willie’s interaction with his pal Thurman Merman.

Hilarious. Absolutely hilarious.

There are obviously quite a few more that can be added on here, guys like Yukon Cornelius, Hermey the Elf, anyone who wants to make the most tired argument on the internet and throw John McClane in there, go ahead. But for my money, these guys above are the cream of the crop. Let me know who your Christmas Mount Rushmore consists of @tyschmit

And have a Merry Christmas, you filthy animals.

Saints Legend Steve Gleason To Receive Congressional Gold Medal


Really cool stuff here. Steve Gleason, who’s story has been highly publicized as he’s been battling ALS since 2011, will be the first NFL player to recieve the Congressional Gold Medal, the highest honor a civilian can be awarded. The amount of work his foundation has done for ALS research has been truly staggering, and seeing his battle and the positive outlook he has maintained throughout this arduous process is incredibly inspiring. I got a chance to see Steve Gleason come on stage at a Pearl Jam concert in Chicago, and the message he delivered really helped put some things in perspective for me.

ALS is absolutely fucking terrible. It’s heart wrenching seeing this disease takes away virtually everything from the people who suffer from it. Steve Gleason was an incredible two sport athlete at Washington State, and he’s obviously a shell of his former self physically. After Katrina, Gleason helped put the city of New Orleans on his back to start the healing process.

Although very sad and heart wrenching, Gleason’s story is as inspirational as they come. Frequently, stories like these don’t have a happy ending, so it’s refreshing to see that Steve Gleason will be honored and recognized not just by New Orleans, but by the entire country. If you’re looking for a feel good story to watch this weekend before the holidays, look no further than Gleason’s documentary, Gleason. It’s well worth the hour and a half time investment.. just make sure you have a couple boxes of Kleenex at arm’s reach.


Heartland Radio 2.0 Ep. 31 – Dark Waters

On today’s show, the guys chat about Gorman’s illustrious film career from Super Bowl commercials to major blockbusters, and he gives a few stories about his time on film sets and out in Hollywood. They also discuss a couple of the shows that they’ve been interested in on Netflix, and cover some news stories from around the globe including a Russian Santa having a fatal heart attack in front of some kids, the Brazilian version of Sweeney Todd, and doppelgangers causing wrongful convictions. Todd wants to know what the best Christmas present each of the guys ever got was, and they answer some listener questions including what each of them would choose to be the world champion of and what their championship belt would look like, and what one song they’d sing the lyrics to if they had a gun pointed at their heads. To close out the show, the guys pick a few more holiday themed Bangerz to help send you into the weekend. It’s a fun one, come and have a good time with us.

This episode features @toddmccomas, @PatMcAfeeShow, @Digz, @nickmaraldo, @tyschmit, @BostonConnr, @HeyGorman, @VivalaZito, and @evanfoxy.

Block Dad Has Already Won The Weight Loss Competition

If you were unaware who Block Dad was, this is the block pull heard ’round the world. Does someone who can defy physics like that look like a loser to you? Tim McAfee is a champion. A hard hat, lunch pail, grit guy through and through, 242 pounds of twisted steel and sex appeal.. and he will be your 2019 Weight Loss Competition Champion.

I know what you may be thinking. “Tim’s too old, he’s at a major disadvantage when he’s competing against these young pups who can manipulate their weight leading up to the competition.” That may be true, but what you don’t know is that Tim has quietly been going full steam ahead into bulking season as we approach the start date. He hasn’t been flashy, hasn’t been in your face about it, but he’s been packing on pounds.


We’ve got one hell of a plan moving forward. Obviously, I can’t divulge too much information on said plan, in an effort to keep Zeet, Todd, and Digs at bay, but what I can tell you is that we have quite the ace in the hole. We’re doing this for the kids, trying to put as many kids whose parents are in the military through college, and we will not fail. Curious what kids we’re trying to help here or maybe how you can support Tim, and in turn, the kids? Look no further.


Look for some videos and pictures to come out in the following weeks that will detail Tim’s journey to getting the strap. There’s a good chance we’ll have a couple special guests coming in to keep Tim motivated (not that he needs it), because we will not lose sight that we have one mission and one mission only… to do this for the kids. The weight loss is just an added bonus here.

We’re not worried about Zeet, Todd, or Digs. These guys are all involved in this weight loss competition for selfish reasons. They’re thinking solely about their bank accounts and the personal gains that would come from winning the Weight Loss Belt. We won’t rest, we won’t sleep, we won’t go quietly into the night, until every military kid out there has a scholarship. That’s the goal. If you’re betting on the Weight Loss Competition (www.mybookie.ag), bet on the correct horse. Odds haven’t been released yet, but Tim McAfee is who the sharp bettors are on.


Zeet has gained about 40 pounds in the last two weeks and I don’t know if he’s got enough juice left in the tank to get down to a winning weight. Zeetski may stay in the 280-300 range for the rest of his life after this.

Todd has bulked up for sure, but I don’t know if he’s putting on enough weight. Typically you’ll have to get a bigger pair of jeans to slide into if you’re gaining weight. Todd, on the other hand, can’t seem to keep his pants up.


And although I love Digs, he’s been struggling thus far. Says he feels like shit, looks like shit right now (kind of), and I think everyone is assuming he will throw in the towel at some point during the month of January. I love him, but the guy quits.. it’s just what he does.

(He quit after a season and spring ball. And he loves football. You think he loves starving himself? Me neither.)

So again, if you’re wondering who to put your chips on in this competition, do you want to put that money on someone who’s doing it for selfish reasons and personal gain, or someone who’s trying to change the world. Make the right decision. Let’s do this for the kids, for chrissakes.


Heartland Radio 2.0 Ep. 30 – Sweet Dreams

On today’s show, the guys discuss whether or not NFL players wear cups, if anyone in the room could go an entire year using email only to communicate for $100,000 tax free, and Pat chats a little bit about his new three-legged cat, Scootsie, and the contract he had his lady sign to ensure they won’t have anymore pets for the next 5 years, and everyone breaks down their weekends. The guys also discuss some of the biggest news stories sweeping the world including a police standoff with a man with a sword in Philadelphia, a man in Australia fleecing a bar ATM for over 1.6 million dollars over the course of four months, a viral video of police using stop sticks to blow out a criminals tires and potentially a couple of civilians’ as well, and a man who was sent to the hospital after smelling his socks each night after taking them off and getting a fungal infection. Todd also wants to know what position each guy in the room is playing if they were to attempt an Ocean’s 11 type heist, and who they’re going after. They also play some fact or fiction, answer some listener questions including which TV show group of friends they would like to be apart of, and what one rule they could change in any of the major sports. They close out the show by chatting a little bit about their dreams and dive into their phones to read a couple of their vitamin thoughts. It’s a fun one, come and have a good time with us.

This episode features @toddmccomas, @PatMcAfeeShow, @Digz, @nickmaraldo, @tyschmit, @BostonConnr, @BroBroBroBets, @VivalaZito, and @evanfoxy, and ends with the song “Beer Run,” by Todd Snider.

It’s Been A Good Year (Jason Wheatley Guest Blog)

It has been a good year for yours truly. In this past year, I had the opportunity to do some pretty cool things and met, and became friends with, some incredible humans whom have done amazing things for me that I couldn’t be more grateful for.

It all began back in February. I knew that Pat McAfee had his own radio show on SiriusXM but had never gotten to listen to it because I wasn’t a subscriber. I was a fan of Pat’s podcast from Day 1 so I wondered what his live radio show was like, so I signed up for a free trial of SiriusXM. I listened to the show for the first time and was instantly hooked. After listening to the show a few times, I decided to call in and introduce myself and ask him a wrestling question. Little did I know, this wouldn’t be my first and only call, but I would become a regular caller.

I called into the show on March 20th and this call would be life changing. I called in to ask Pat and Todd if they would be interested in a friendly little wager on the Chicago Cubs vs. Cincinnati Reds season series. To make a long story short, they accepted the bet and unintentionally learned my story and what my daily life was like being bedridden. After learning my story, Pat said he wanted to come and do a show from my room.

I called in again on March 23rd to thank the crew for the merch they sent and the folks that followed me on Twitter from the previous call. After getting off of the phone and the show came back from a break, the crew continued to talk about me a bit. Pat said that Nick had a great idea. Pat was doing a Swear Jar because he was preparing to do his first WWE NXT Preshow Panel where swearing is forbidden. Nick said that Pat should donate the Swear Jar money to me. Pat thought it was a great idea and that the money should go to a room renovation for the room that I live in while being completely bedridden. Pat set a $10,000 minimum for the Swear Jar. In the end, the Swear Jar, along with a GoFundMe for listeners that wanted to contribute to the cause, raised a total of about $13,000!


Fast forward to the month of May. A few of my firefighter friends and a nurse friend wanted to do something special for me. Chris, one of the firefighter friends, happens to be a member of the IndyCar Safety Team and has some connections. With the help of Heather Carpenter (the wife of IndyCar driver Ed Carpenter), arranged for an ambulance to pick me up on May 16th and take me to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway to watch a practice session for the Indianapolis 500. Once we arrived, I was taken on a tour of the track, I got to meet Ed and his teammate Spencer Pigot, and then I was taken to the 8th floor of the Pagoda to watch practice. It was an incredible day that I won’t forget. We all had so much fun that we are planning on doing it again next year.

June 6th: Pat and some of the crew in the office came to record the podcast and present me with the Swear Jar money. All of us greeted each other and chit-chatted while Ty set up all of the recording equipment. The recording was a great time and it was surreal to me. Here I was, Pat McAfee (and his friends) in my house and talking to me face-to-face, eye-to-eye. The fact that I was in the presence of one of my favorite Colts was absolutely unreal and a dream come true. The podcast dropped on June 8th.

July 19th: A few firefighter friends from one of the local fire departments stopped by for a visit and to conduct a bit of official business. That official business involved me. I was made an official member of the department and was presented with a firefighting helmet with my own department number on the shield and my own uniform shirt complete with a nameplate with my name and badge. My brothers and sisters of the department say I am an official member but I still consider myself an honorary member. This accolade is one of the greatest honors of my life and means so much to me.

July 24th: Construction began on the Room Renovation sponsored by Pat McAfee. The renovation took three weeks to complete, and my family and I are very satisfied with the results. The room was opened up and gave my family ample space to move around while tending to my needs.

August 26: I had some friends that I made from Pat’s radio show come to visit. Brian from Champaign, his wife Kelly, and British Will came to watch the Cubs-Reds game with me and hang out. It was really cool getting to meet and hang out with a few fellow regular callers and friends from Pat’s radio show. All of us had a great time and are now lifelong friends and it’s all thanks to Pat McAfee. We will be getting together many more times in the future.

October 12th: Another friend that I made through Pat’s radio show, Nick and his friend Brody, are graphic designers and when they heard that Pat was having my room renovated, they wanted to do something for the room as well. Nick redesigned my Hoosier Fire Buff logo and put it on a sweet ass background. Nick and Brody came to visit and put the graphic up to ensure it was done right. A cool graphic from two cool cuzzies.

All said and done, it’s been a good…no, GREAT year, and one I will never forget!