BANTER BLENDER #102: Halloween Candy Roundup, Ebola Nurse, and Pumpkin Spice Mania

This week on “The Banter Blender,” Angie Thomas (“All The Way” podcast) and David Clark join Ben Mandelker ( to rehash the Halloween weekend that was. This means bantering extensively about candy and costumes (and a little Annie Lennox, for some reason).

Then it’s on to more pressing topics: should “the Ebola nurse” quarantine herself? Should people shop at Trader Joe’s? And when will pumpkin spice madness ever stop?

It’s a super fun, super-sized episode. Come listen!

BANTER WITH BEN AND LISA #73: Kanye’s Confederate Flag, Revisiting Gravity, and a Major Operation Seduction Update

This week on “Banter with Ben and Lisa,” we revisit “Gravity” as Lisa weighs in on the space thriller. Spirited debate ensues. Then it’s on to Halloween and tales of Ben’s costume woes. This leads to a major update on Operation: Seduction (a.k.a. Ben’s continued efforts to seduce NBA player Jason Collins).

Next Lisa discusses her very close call with the LAX shooter, and then it’s on to Kanye West and his adoption of the confederate flag as part of his new personal style.

Finally, it’s a new segment: Can We Banter It? Ben and Lisa attempt to banter on subjects that are highly foreign to them. This week: drone strikes in Yemen and Pakistan as well as the discovery of art stolen by the Nazis. Fun!

Come listen!

BANTER WITH BEN AND LISA #72: Halloween Banter Spook-tacular! With Special Guests Ronnie Karam and Marcos Luevanos

It’s Halloween, and this week’s “Banter with Ben and Lisa” is chock full of spooky topics: Patricia Arquette, Nicolas Cage, American Horror Story, The Walking Dead, and of course, Guy Fieri. And that’s just the tip.

Making things even more fun is that Lisa and Ben are joined by special guests Ronnie Karam (Watch What Crappens) and Marcos Luevanos (writer for The Game).

Listen to the foursome get drunk off wine and jump into the Banter Blender!

BANTER WITH BEN AND LISA #71: Scary Halloween Mazes, Childhood Pets, ‘Bridegroom’

Lisa Timmons is back in LA, y’all! And to celebrate, we’ve got a brand new episode of “Banter with Ben and Lisa” for you. This week, Ben Mandelker ( and Lisa ( get into the Halloween spirit by talking about all sorts of scary things. For Lisa, that means going to Halloween Horror Nights at Universal Studios. For Ben, it means telling stories of Yiddish ghosts in his childhood home.

There’s also a tear-inducing tale of Ben’s beleaguered hamster Snowflake, and talk of fall movies including “All Is Lost” and “Bridegroom.” Plus, Ben and Lisa go way back to 1986 with “The Great Mouse Detective.”

Oh, and there’s an impassioned discussion about mayonaise and other sundry condiments. Just another day in the Banter Blender! Come listen!

BANTER WITH BEN AND LISA #66: Wentworth Miller, Fall Television, and Halloween

This week on “Banter with Ben and Lisa,” Ben Mandelker ( and Lisa Timmons ( discuss some of the fall television they’re excited for. Plus, it’s an update on “Operation Seduction” with talk of Wentworth Miller’s recent coming out of the closet. The two also discuss Ben’s internship experiences at “Late Night with Conan O’Brien,” the WWE, and “Strangers with Candy.” As a bonus, there’s talk of Yom Kippur and Halloween, naturally. Come listen!

And remember that if you use the promo code “banter” at, you can nab a .com for only $2! That’s like the cost of a king-sized pack of m&ms. But so much more useful!

Lock down that domain before anyone else does!

So I Made a Taylor Armstrong Jack-O’-Lantern…


Classify this as creepy but fun. I decided to make a jack-o’-lantern out of Taylor Armstrong’s face, and I must say that I’m very happy with the results. I really wanted to do some pop culture themed pumpkin, and what better place to look for inspiration but The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills? Clearly, I had to pumkin-ify Taylor as she has one of the most distinct faces on Bravo. I’m not saying she necessarily looks like a jack-o’-lantern, but I just knew those famous lips would translate particularly well to a gourd.

After successfully creating Taylor in pumpkin form, I have to say that I’m a little obsessed with doing more. Ideally, it would be great to make pumpkins of the entire Beverly Hills cast, but I’m not sure I have the stamina for such an endeavor (not to mention the time). Next year…

Pics of the pumpkin party after the jump… Continue reading

Ep. 11: Banter With Ben and Lisa

Hey everyone, Lisa and I are back with yet another podcast, and once again we went mobile to Starbucks so we could people watch AND banter at the same time! On this episode, we talk about the joys of Halloween as well as The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills and The Real Housewives of Atlanta. We had a fun time. Hope you have one too!


And remember, you can subscribe to the podcast on iTunes for free! Click here.

THE QUAFF: Green Tea Mojito Edition


When I think about Halloween, the first word that jumps into my head is “mojito.” Actually, no. That’s not the case at all. And yet for some reason, my friends Sly, IndianJones, and I decided to make a batch of mojitos before hitting the town Sunday night (it should be noted that Sly retired to her spider-ridden domicile instead of joining us out and about).

Anyway, in an effort to change things up from the typical mojito experience, we once again turned to Paul Abercrombie’s awesome book Organic, Shaken, and Stirred and set our eyes on a green tea mojito recipe. It seemed like an intriguing twist on the classic Cuban cocktail. So what if it was perhaps vastly out of season? (to be fair, Los Angeles has been in the throes of 90 degree weather; so it wasn’t totally bizarre to opt for a Halloween mojito).

After the jump, a very special cocktail of the week — a feature I’ve renamed “The Quaff” because it sounds at once very fancy and simultaneously slightly dirty. Spoiler alert: I’m in my costume…

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Epic Halloween Weekend Leads To Annual Batch of Embarrassing Photos


People might not realize this, but Halloween in Los Angeles can be a crazy, crazy experience, and this past weekend was no exception. Luckily, my friends and I always seem to have a camera on hand, which means much of the ridiculousness can be documented. Sadly, we did miss some vital pics — such as the annual onslaught of sexy iterations of generally non-sexy things: sexy Waldo, sexy Freddy Krueger, sexy Chilean miners, etc. I even think I saw a sexy version of Max from Where the Wild Things Are.

Pictures (of slutty and non-slutty costumes alike) after the jump…

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