BANTER BLENDER #100: Damian Holbrook on “Gotham,” “Scorpion,” and Trolling the iPhone in a Samsung Commercial

This week, we’re joined by Damian Holbrook (TV Guide Magazine) who recently gained notoriety after his snarky Twitter dig at the new iPhone wound up in a Samsung commercial. We talk about how that happened, what the response has been, and how Damian is dealing with the onslaught of iPhone fanboys.

Then it’s on to Fall TV. We discuss some of the most talked-about shows, starting with “Gotham,” then “Scorpion” and then of course “The Mysteries of Laura.”

Lots of fun stuff here. Come listen!

And follow the show at



I have great news — at least for people in Los Angeles (sorry, rest of the world). There’s a new ride sharing app that’s hurling itself into the marketplace, which means that when Über is on “Surge” mode and a Lyft is nowhere to be found, you have a whole brand new option! Introducing Opoli, which is sort of like Über meets Priceline meets Taxi Magic meets whatever. Basically, users looking to get somewhere fire up the app, enter in their location and destination, and then decide how much they want to pay for the voyage. Then various drivers bid for the job — so I guess it’s like TaskRabbit also… before TaskRabbit started doing hourly rates and became annoying. According to Opoli, this is what sets the app apart from the competition — the ability to name your fare and know exactly how much you’ll be paying for the ride (goodbye traffic anxiety).

Now, why am I sitting here writing what basically sounds like a commercial? Well, first of all, shame on you. It’s not a commercial. I am merely describing the purpose of the app. And why am I doing that? Because Opoli gave me a promo code to share with my readers. So it is a commercial after all! Yay! Kind of.

Okay, here’s the important stuff. If you enter in the promo code BSIDEBLOG, you get a $50 dollar credit. That’s $50! Now you can put that money towards booze instead of transport. (Don’t drink and drive, kids. Seriously).

Here’s the deal:

Download the Opoli app or visit Opoli online, click BOOK SERVICES. Then enter promo code BSIDEBLOG for a $50 credit. You must enter the promo code prior to accepting a bid.

Oh, and there is one catch — you knew it was coming, didn’t you? This code is good for only 20 first-time riders. So if you want to cash in on this, do it soon because if you’re the 21st person to use the code, you are out of luck. BOOYAH.


(For some reason I feel I should note that Opoli gave me a promo code to try out the service, but I haven’t used it yet; so I can’t vouch for anything. But I intend to try it out!)

Countess LuAnn Has An iPhone App

“Ladies and gentlemen: this is the Countess speaking. We have arrived. On your phone.”

That’s what I imagine LuAnn De Lesseps’ new iPhone app says when you start it up. Yes, you heard me correctly: LuAnn has a new iPhone app. Money can’t buy you class, but it can nab you “Countess LuAnn” for $0.99. The application offers many useful tools, such as a primer on etiquette, an “Ask the Countess” feature, and most importantly the ability to create images of you and LuAnn. That alone might be worth the dollar.

Additionally, users can take “Etiquette & Manner” polls and thumb through LuAnn’s bio, photos, and videos. There’s also much, much more, which only makes sense for someone enjoying the “Chic, C’est La Vie” mobile lifestyle. Features that don’t appear to be included:

  • Create your own dismissive insult.
  • A haughty laugh recording that allows you to punctuate any dig by pressing a button and hearing LuAnn’s guffaw.
  • A GPS feature that seethes, “THIS IS NOT THE PLAZA HOTEL. THIS IS Ralph’s Italian Ices of Syosset.”
  • A Groupon-esque feature that with every deal always reminds you, “See, I share my deals with you. I’m not like Ramona, who won’t share HER deals. That’s an awfully BITCHY thing to do.”
  • A camel safety video.
  • Push notifications for the app to occasionally ask you, “Would you believe she called me a snake? How nasty! The mouth on that one!”

To purchase the app, click here.

Via OK magazine

Missed Watson on Jeopardy? Check It Out Here

In case you’re like me and missed the much-hyped Watson appearance on Jeopardy last night, check out the video above which lets you see how it all went down. I believe tonight’s show features the Double and Final Jeopardy rounds, and Wednesday airs all the rounds together as a complete show. But don’t quote me on that.

Nevertheless, it’s pretty cool watching this computer at work, and I couldn’t help letting out a chuckle or two every time Watson messed up. It’s not that the computer erred, it’s just that it erred in such odd ways and with such conviction. It’s like the cat video of computers.


(Go humans!!)

Via Vulture

The First Annual B-Side Blog Holiday Gift Guide


Over the past year, various companies have sent me all sorts of cool swag, and in an effort to pay it forward, I’ve decided to compile a list of my favorite freebies (as well as a few that I did fork over some cold, hard cash for). For all you last minute shoppers out there, take heed: this might be the guidance you so desperately need.

My humble gift-giving suggestions after the jump…

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As part of my ongoing series of reviewing my free purchases from CSN Stores, I must now move on to my most needed addition to the kitchen: a citrus juicer. My friends and I often convene for what we like to call “Fresh Cocktail Hour,” in which we whip up a batch of beverages totally from scratch. We’ve made margaritas (classic, jalapeño, and Ina Garten varieties), mojitos, basil gimlets, and who knows what else. Many of the drinks require excessive amounts of lemon and lime juicing, and given that I only have a lowly reamer, it’s a process that can take a while. To make an average sized batch of cocktails, it can take twenty or twenty five minutes to go through the squeezing. Plus, with all the seeds and pulp, it can get a bit unwieldy. Therefore, buying a citrus juicer was a no-brainer for me. When it arrived, I was more than excited. I juiced an orange just for the hell of it. Heck, for the first few days, I juiced whatever I could, even if it was totally excessive. Truth be told: I didn’t need to bust out the machine for just one lowly lime, but I was excited and in the throes of citrus mania.

With those first humble juicing experiences, the machine seemed to fare well. It had an unfortunate habit of overloading my outlet; thus, requiring me to press the little reset button on an annoyingly regular basis, but this wasn’t a major problem. The real test was gonna be seeing if it could stand up to the rigorous juicing that a Fresh Cocktail Hour would require. Enter my friend Katherine. We decided to gather some friends for some afternoon libations this past weekend, and that could only mean one thing: it was time to enlist my juicer for service.

The chosen recipe: Victory Lemonade. This bombastically named cocktail called for a cup and a half of lemon juice (among other things). Would the juicer be up for it? Results after the jump.

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How To Use iOS4

If you’re like me, you just downloaded and installed the new iPhone operating system (iOS4) and nearly fainted at the prospect of all the new features. Multitasking! Folders! Wallpapers! Playlists! Threaded emails! There’s only one catch: it’s not clearly evident how to use all the new stuff. Switching wallpapers is pretty easy to figure out (just go to Settings), and the threaded email is pretty self-explanatory, but what of multi-tasking? And how do you make a folder?

Apple didn’t make tutorials easily available (at least as far as my researching skills proved), but I found the above nifty video that talked me through some of the finer points of the new OS. Check it out if you’re having similar issues or if you just want to learn some iOS4 tips.

Also, check out this article for further information on cool features. (Thanks IndianJones)