The Return of SuChin’s Ho-sband Mike Bender

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SuChin’s other half Mike Bender makes a triumphant return, just in time for Father’s Day. Forget the power tools and grilling accessories, he’s got gifts for the sensitive, introspective dad. He also responds to SuChin’s live show allegations about his ho days (does that make him…a ho-sband?) Plus, in anticipation of their road trip, Mike is hard at work figuring out how four people can live out of a van for a few weeks. But SuChin’s bathroom routine may present his biggest challenge yet.

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SuChin Pak, Kulap Vilaysack, Mike Bender

SuChin Pak  01:30

Welcome back kiddos to another episode of Add To Cart, I am SuChin Pak.


Kulap Vilaysack  01:35

And I’m Kulap Vilaysack. Carter’s Father’s Day is this Sunday, it is the annual opportunity to celebrate the dads in your life and the things that they’ve done for you. Like when they opened the unopened double pickle jars or remind you to get your oil changed.


SuChin Pak  01:52

Or open up your checks and pretend that they did it by mistake. And every time you say please don’t open up my checks, they still open them up. That’s very, very specific. And for example, for Father’s Day this year, you know, we wanted to make sure we acknowledge the dads that aren’t all about grilling and power tools. Some dads might not want another electric screwdriver or a pair of socks from Home Depot. You know, we’re here to amplify and uplift. What I’d like to say the the sensitive that , the more the more in tune dads out there. And we have a perfect guest today that is both sensitive and in tune always.


Kulap Vilaysack  02:42

He’s a New York Times best selling author, the screenwriter of the cult classic Not Another Teen Movie and the co founder of Awkward Family Photos. He’s a father of two, SuChin too specifically please add to cart and the return of, Mike Bender.


SuChin Pak  03:06

He’s in the ring. He’s back my oiled up. Ready to wrestle.


Mike Bender  03:11

Oh, I’m so so ready. Ready?


Kulap Vilaysack  03:14

I’m soaked.


Mike Bender  03:18

I wasn’t gonna say that. But now that you mentioned it still I am a little so fun.


Kulap Vilaysack  03:24

But Mike, I hate to start off like this. But you know now that we’re talking about Mike being soaked you haven’t been on the podcast for over a year but yet we speak of you and we spoke of you rather recently at our live show. Where at SuChin described your sexual prowess your your lady killer past your multiple partners before SuChin before the various beverages that you partake and ended up with our SuChin referred to herself a flat soda. Mike, would you like to speak on that? Do you have anything to say? Do you have a rebuttal?


Mike Bender  04:03

Oh, I’m glad Kulap, that you started this way. I thought this was going to be the elephant in the room. So I wanted to just I also wanted to begin with this. You didn’t mention the exact wording that was used. I believe that she called me H O which is a hoe for people that don’t know how to put those sounds together. And you know, I think it’s not I mean, she didn’t say slut but this is slut shaming. This is whole hating. And


Kulap Vilaysack  04:41

This episode is called hating guys. Sorry. It’s called hating already. Let’s call it now.


Mike Bender  04:46

And I wanted to set the record straight because SuChin’s been playing this role.


SuChin Pak  04:54

I don’t think you do. I no longer do.


Mike Bender  04:57

She’s been.


SuChin Pak  04:59

You tread lightly.


Mike Bender  05:00

Again, her favorite go to is that I am sloughed that I was at hoe. And the thing is, and I’m gonna say this for the record, and this last I’m gonna say this. She’s absolutely 100% Correct.


Kulap Vilaysack  05:14

Okay, okay, okay. Wow. Wow.


SuChin Pak  05:20

It only took about 15 years of us dating and married combined two children and about four house moves to finally get to this spot. And I wish I was in your lap. Holding you gently. Thank you so much. That’s how long it takes for a woman to be vindicated in this relationship. It’s been a struggle.


Mike Bender  05:41

You know, with the depth of my ego recently. I can I can look back.


Kulap Vilaysack  05:45

Oh, my goodness. All right. I wasn’t aware of your.


Mike Bender  05:47

Oh, yeah. You didn’t know. They didn’t pass away. You passed away. We didn’t do we didn’t make a big deal of it. But we, you know, I look back Yeah, there was there was there was I seem to be on some sort of a conquest back then. And I can say safely that that is not happening anymore. Mostly because I’m not sure that anybody would want that to happen. But you know, it was it was another time.


SuChin Pak  06:17

Oh, wow. Wow. So I thought he was gonna say you know, because he’s in a loving relationship, monogamous loving relationship, but it’s mostly because nobody wants that.


Kulap Vilaysack  06:27

I can relate because like I stopped, I don’t act as much but I like to say that I’m offer only the offers don’t come but I.


SuChin Pak  06:39

Incoming call.


Kulap Vilaysack  06:40

None, zero. Very quiet and calm here.


SuChin Pak  06:45

So now he’s in his sensitive era. But you know what I mean?


Mike Bender  06:48

I think though even when we’re married, you know we’re out and about or in the world. You might be at the grocery store. And whereas before you might have felt Sometimes there was something going on just like a little innocent moment with somebody happen that much anymore.


SuChin Pak  07:06

Okay. Okay.


Mike Bender  07:06

That I have at least been aware of.


SuChin Pak  07:10

And boy, does he look you know what I mean? Mike Bender comes from a long line of, of people in his family, men and women that that look, you know, Angel,


Kulap Vilaysack  07:21

We’re talking about, Jules talking about Chris.


Mike Bender  07:24

We have we have the ogling gene. I think that’s what I noticed when I looked it up on WebMD 2323. Me I had the ogling.


SuChin Pak  07:36

So it you know the lines are being cast out? They’re just coming back empty.


Kulap Vilaysack  07:41

Let’s dive into your cart. Mike, let’s get let’s get into says what the sensitive dads want. Okay. Yes. And the first thing is something that I’m familiar with that I added card during the pandemic was a Jackery. Guys, it’s nothing to do with masturbation. Or is it? Well, no, it’s not. It’s not.


Mike Bender  08:04

We don’t know. We don’t know.


Kulap Vilaysack  08:06

Okay. Don’t know.


Mike Bender  08:07

Yeah, the same Jackery to our carts. As we mentioned, I’m not getting as much attention. So you got to you got to compensate in other ways Kulap, but I definitely added this one for a reason, because I think that dads in general, probably sensitive and even less sensitive dads. Always, you know, at least when I’ve gone out to dinner with a group of dads. The conversation is always around what kind of security systems you have guys always go to the same conversation. I don’t know why that.


Kulap Vilaysack  08:38

Insurance policies.


Mike Bender  08:39

Security what if things go wrong? What do we do in the disaster?


Kulap Vilaysack  08:43

But here’s the thing in my pairing with Scott, that’s me. That’s me.


SuChin Pak  08:50

I’m the one that has there always has.


Kulap Vilaysack  08:52

Yeah, I’m the one that yes, in part of our Eme baby proofing needs to remove my Rambo like knives collection around the house. That is what I have to do.


Mike Bender  09:04

That’s really interesting. Well, you should come to these dinners when I go. You were absolutely invited.


Kulap Vilaysack  09:11

Thank you for that invite.


Mike Bender  09:12

Yeah, no, I think that dads like to think about those genetic disaster scenarios and have a plan. And I like to know like, the power goes out. I’m just like thinking about that because those those are always very stressful times for me. I also have about $50,000 in frozen meat.


SuChin Pak  09:33

That’s not an exaggeration. Yes. Many commas and zeros of frozen meat.


Mike Bender  09:38

Yeah. Like some people have like a safe in their home with like gold in it with like gold, you know, blocks I have actually just bison. Yeah, it isn’t currency. And so


Kulap Vilaysack  09:50

it’s Mike’s red gold.


Mike Bender  09:54

It’s when the power goes out. I get nervous. So Jackery is is a company that really really focuses on that I ordered not the top top one kind of Kulap which one you ended up with. I wanted one that I could hope to solar up to, so that when the power goes out if I lose all that, then I have another way of of juicing that thing up. So I like Jackery I think that they’re they’re really focused on that one product only and then that’s what they do. And they do well.


Kulap Vilaysack  10:28

Yeah, so you got the solar generator. I got the Jackery Explorer 1000 portable power station.


Mike Bender  10:35

I got the 2000 Actually.


Kulap Vilaysack  10:38

Okay. Okay.


Mike Bender  10:39

1000 But it connects to the solar power so you can look in the solar panels to it, but yeah, it’s I wanted to get one mainly because it had a power our freezer a deep freezer. So you need a lot of charge to keep that thing going for like eight nine hours.


Kulap Vilaysack  10:58

So let’s talk about this deep freezer. Is it what we got a classic like garage situation?


SuChin Pak  11:03

Which one a lift? One? What does it look which deep freezer?


Kulap Vilaysack  11:07

Okay, I need to know how many freezers Do you?


Mike Bender  11:10

I’ve got one that’s just outside this door behind me. That’s the second one that arrived. I have gotten a backup freezer just in case the first freezer fails.


SuChin Pak  11:20

Yeah. And then we have a third one arriving. Right? A smaller one.


Kulap Vilaysack  11:23



SuChin Pak  11:23

Go in the laundry room.


Kulap Vilaysack  11:25

So Mike Bender is not unlike our past guest, Jason Mantzoukas Zouks cubes. And he has an equation, which is one equals 0, 2 equals one and three equals two.


SuChin Pak  11:40

That is how we are with our deep freezers. There is no rhyme or reason.


Kulap Vilaysack  11:45

No, there’s a by the way, we all. That’s the reason really.


SuChin Pak  11:50

Right now, it’s a little Kuku, but we do have three deep freezers in rotation. I think we’ll settle down on two, correct?


Mike Bender  11:58

Well, yeah, I yeah, I think so. We’re just feeling this out. I don’t want to just immediately get rid of one of these freezers in this conversation. They all serve a purpose in sub zero that I have. It’s so small the amount of room I have. I know that sounds ridiculous because it’s sub zero. But the freezer side is tiny. I can’t I have I have bison liver that needs to get in there. These are big packages, folks. And so I have to make sure that I can jam all this stuff in there. And so I do have a couple of freezers in rotation.


Kulap Vilaysack  12:36

Because if you think about it, he’s like reforming the bison has been dissected by second he’s reforming the bison again, within his freezers. So you have to have that enough space for adult sized bison.


SuChin Pak  12:51

It’s God I love. I love this so much like God, I love this.


Mike Bender  12:56

It’s almost like a bison Voltron. Do you remember Voltron?


Kulap Vilaysack  13:04

What are what are the flux running shoes? And I didn’t know you were a runner, by the way.


Mike Bender  13:10

By the way, I just want to throw in a Jason Mantzoukas . And I went to college together. Jim has refused to mention to him for months and months, maybe or maybe years. I used to say hello to him. Jason, you may not remember me. I was the other guy that was a film major. That’s, that’s that’s about it. But I wanted to just get that out there because she would never do it. Jason, she won’t talk to you.


SuChin Pak  13:40

Wait, this goes back farther. It goes back to just same class.


Mike Bender  13:47

Also went to college with?


SuChin Pak  13:49

Yeah,that’s right. And every time I talk about Jess or Jason, he’s like, did you tell them that I went and I’m like, No, dude, you do not come up. I’m not telling them you went to call. I don’t. This isn’t about you. Anyway, and every single time I cannot believe you snuck that in very small every single time.


Mike Bender  14:09

Very small cool. Middle. Very, very small. Very small.


SuChin Pak  14:12

There. There. Can we never mention it again?


Mike Bender  14:14

Absolutely. I got it out. And Jason. Hello. Great to see you again. All right. So we were moving on to the flux shoes, right?


Kulap Vilaysack  14:24

Yes. These flux runners.


Mike Bender  14:27

Do you know about these Kulap, what about new to me? Oh, you’re gonna be in these things, too. Okay. So the reason that I got to the flux was I read a book. My brother had recommended this book Born to Run, which is a classic book and I wasn’t all that interested because I don’t I’m not a runner anymore. I used to run cross country that says a lot.


Kulap Vilaysack  14:53

I did cross country in high school as well.


Mike Bender  14:56

No way.


Kulap Vilaysack  14:56

Yeah, I wasn’t very good. I was always left of the middle.


Mike Bender  15:00

But I mean, it’s a brutal sport. Yeah. For people who can’t do team sports.


Kulap Vilaysack  15:05

That’s right.


Mike Bender  15:06

I read this book. And I absolutely fell in love with it. And I think this book is, is relevant for everyone. And this book is like, it’s a very, very famous book, Chris McDougal, he really went after the shoe industry in this book. And he does so in a very convincing way. He goes, and he follows this Mexican tariff, Mara, but I’ve been in Mexico for, you know, hundreds and hundreds of years. And they are natural runners, they run like 60, 70 miles into their 60s. And actually, as they get older, they get better. The younger ones, actually worse than the older ones, which is crazy, but he went to study them. And one of the things he learned was like, they run in these like little leather shoes, and they don’t really wear much. But in doing so he realized that, like the shoe industry, especially Nike has been aware of this for a long time. This is something that I think everybody walks around in their running shoes. And so with this whole concept of an arch support is absolute bullshit. You do not need an arch support, you have an arch for a reason. We know that arches are very strong, they use them in architecture for that reason. And so when you put the support there, you then put the pressure and other parts of your leg. And this is why so many people end up with knee injuries and back injuries is because of the shoes.


SuChin Pak  16:38

And I just want to put in here that he started to go into this, because he bought a pair of Hokas After hearing about our Hoka that’s recession.


Kulap Vilaysack  16:50

Yeah, yeah.


Mike Bender  16:50

And what happened.


SuChin Pak  16:51

He was wearing the hokas and he was like, this hurts like my knees are, this feels really off. And this started this whole journey for him. So I’m to Hokas.


Mike Bender  17:08

Hokas, and I thought, why is my It wasn’t even in my knees, my legs were hurting. Like just when I was wearing them, every time I’d wear my legs would hurt. Never something I felt before I got to have the Hokas is it I wasn’t feeling it, and flux and there’s another company called Zero shoes, which are also really good. Those are the ones that Chris McDougal wears. But they basically they have a wide toe box, they have no arch support, you can feel the ground below you. So you can actually feel as you’re walking over things you can feel it. It’s not it gives you some protection. But the idea is that your feet are still sensing things and especially that your front toes are not getting jammed together like in a running shoe everything gets jammed together.


Kulap Vilaysack  17:52

They look good they look much better than those those horrible running shoes that look like feet what are those called? I’ve seen those though they’re disturbing to me.


Mike Bender  18:01

That was Nikes response to when they kind of got called that he mentioned this in the book they develop those shoes to kind of say like Okay, now we got something for that. I think they’re I always think of the sarin live sketch Jack Johnson’s shoes that look like feet. I don’t know what those are called. But those are crazy. He’s actually look decent. really looking shoes.


Kulap Vilaysack  18:24

They are.


SuChin Pak  18:25

The  flux running shoes, which we all now have. But to get to the flux Mike ordered a bunch of he added to cart I don’t know zeros added to cart a bunch of these.


Kulap Vilaysack  18:36

He was doing research.


SuChin Pak  18:40

He wouldn’t be like What do you think? I mean, I was like, I mean they’re most of them. I’m like You look like you are going to preschool now. Now’s the time for your Baba and your binky. They had stripes they looked crazy. They were primary colors. He finally landed on these flux and I said fine. I will wear those because he was trying to convince me to wear these preschool shoes. And so these are actually beautiful shoes. They look like Converse right?


Mike Bender  19:08

I think like that company is the most like aesthetically pleasing of these types of shoes. There’s there’s a couple of them out there but I think flux does a great job and they also have this like this is where I’m gonna get you Kulap they have little like bumps on the inside the shoe that massage the bottom of your.


Kulap Vilaysack  19:27



Mike Bender  19:29

And it reminds me a little bit of like when we used to go to the Korean spa and we put on those sandals that would massage your feet and I have to tell you, it’s like addictive. I actually like crave getting into them. So that get that massage. It’s like somebody just like lightly itching down there. It’s really.


Kulap Vilaysack  19:48

That sounds amazing. Huh?


SuChin Pak  19:51

Yeah, that is what got me that is what got me my get the ones that aren’t the high tops that the regular because I have the high tops and they don’t have that added fee. shirt which I love. Because do I walk the dog on his last walk at night? In Mike’s shoes? Yes. Because they have that. That massage thing on the bottom. So.


Mike Bender  20:12

Lansley buys high tops for all their shoes. But then she doesn’t wear the high tops because high tops are notoriously hard to get into.


SuChin Pak  20:20

Yeah, yeah, they just wear your giant.


Mike Bender  20:23

Look of a high touch. Cool.


Kulap Vilaysack  20:25

I have noticed that she won’t wear sandals without socks. She likes a high top. This is like because when a high top is Mike Bender is a high collar. But for her ankle, it’s the same thing. It’s a Victorian Collar.


Mike Bender  20:39

Yeah, it’s the Dickey of the foot.


Kulap Vilaysack  20:41

That’s right. That’s right. Like.


SuChin Pak  20:45

I’m gonna be able to tuck a pant, you know, into a shoe, a sock, etc. At any moment in time, a draft.


Mike Bender  20:55

My standard. My standard for buying a shoe is one that I wear. And that’s what I wear. I don’t get it.


SuChin Pak  21:03

I love it because I wear your it’s a win win.


Mike Bender  21:06



Kulap Vilaysack  22:14

Oh gosh, this is this is to me the big headline. Mike Bender, let’s talk about van life. Let’s talk about Atlas vans, let’s talk about this major projects that you’re in charge of you’ve dove into.


Mike Bender  22:27

So after kind of undertaking, the renovation of our house, I started to do the same with with the van. I wanted to create a healthy human healthy van that we could travel in. But here’s the crazy thing about van life, it’s really hard to make it a healthy like indoor environment. As you can imagine, you’ve shrunk everything, your air quality, you just everything sort of gets progressively worse as you get into a smaller space.


Mike Bender  22:58

Condense. So it’s a challenge from a few places and one is electrical. Obviously you’re also on top of all your electrical equipment, like everyone’s beds are right on top of like all the things that power the van. So that was a lot of logistical work trying to figure out those pieces. But what’s interesting Kulap.


Kulap Vilaysack  22:58



Kulap Vilaysack  23:19

Yes, Mike.


Mike Bender  23:19

Is that with all the complexities of figuring out the electric, you know, the schematics and the electric and the air quality and making sure there’s no mold.


SuChin Pak  23:29

Freezers going.


Mike Bender  23:31

I realized that I ended up spending a majority of the time trying to figure out a toilet situation for my wife SuChin that was the most complex part of this. Not requiring the entire system around. You know, that had never been done, but trying to figure out with the amount of time she pees during the night. What kind of toilet can we rigor?


Kulap Vilaysack  24:01

Mike can I just I need to vent right now. I just need to vent she gives me so much shit about having you know a Japanese butane and and this is what she says with the Japanese station. She’s like, she’s always like, you’re not going to be able to survive like I I won’t in an apocalypse. Like I’m going to be so soft because I have heated seats. Okay, and here’s so then this lady here should be like, to me the way that she speaks about apocalypse. As if she isn’t afraid of drafts as if in speaking as if she’s this like Bear Gryllus who will take a jump in the woods. Now go ahead, Go ahead, Mike, please continue on. Continue on. Well.


Mike Bender  24:45

I mean, Kulap, nothing would make me happier and senior took a dump in the woods. But in this case, she wants every toilet I presented to her, you know, wasn’t good enough. But how it’s gonna work. Work How is what but what if I have to pee? This toilet it captures each individual pee. That’s no good because I have to pee five times it’s gonna use a lot of plastic bags. So I had to really do a digging. And I also had to figure out as his toilet, where does it live? How does it present itself? So I have.


SuChin Pak  25:25

So basically, basically, basically, he’s got a bungee cord to a smaller camper just pulls and I’m in that smaller bungee cord camper. Just peeing and shiting happy as can be.


Mike Bender  25:41

I have rigged up a toilet that slides out, slides out almost like you know, like a nice glide in the kitchen when you open a nice drawer slides so we don’t have to hear SuChin like rustling in the middle of the night as she pulls this thing out of some sort of cabinet this baby slides. Oh, and this is a Japanese disaster toilet.


Kulap Vilaysack  26:09

SuChin Pak.


SuChin Pak  26:11

If that isn’t merch material, Japanese disaster toilet, that’s not my gaming handle. Then what is go on?


Mike Bender  26:21

That shouldn’t be Japanese disaster. Amazing gaming. This toilet is designed for disasters. And so what better? Better toilet for my wife? Because this toilet has made it through some you know.


SuChin Pak  26:38

Since tsunamis.


Mike Bender  26:40

Yes, everything earthquakes, tsunamis. So this is the toilet so she can use this toilet, it will bag it and seal it right up right then in there.


SuChin Pak  26:52

Sorry. Because he presented some toilets where I had to dispose of the tray. I was like, Absolutely.


Mike Bender  27:01

This is the biggest question mark in our travels will be how all this pink sort of, you know, where will it ultimately come down? Like, are we going to sleep? We don’t know. Like, there’s so many question marks. It’s not even about me anymore. And all my sensitivities. It’s truly about it’s come down to a urine situation.


SuChin Pak  27:22

No aspect of my life has been untouched by urine. I mean, wherever, whatever. Whatever it is, be a travel, be it you know, food, anything transportation?


Kulap Vilaysack  27:39



SuChin Pak  27:40

It has to be on that list.


Mike Bender  27:43

And I who am so, you know, careful with the environmental situation and ban. Her urine has to factor into that.


SuChin Pak  27:52

Yeah, yeah.


Mike Bender  27:53

Right. We can’t be having so much of that. So I have to, I have to make sure that it’s quickly taken care of and removed from.


SuChin Pak  28:03

So I just want to say to everyone, you know, we wanted to have you on because we wanted to talk about like all the things that we are thinking about as a family as we approach summer van life, right. And everything Mike has been working on this for I mean, at least a year. And he’ll come back at the end of summer and let us know what Van life actually was like. So the hope is is that all the things that you’ve researched will give us a happy summer van life. I think one of the things that we did come to the conclusion of is is that I may not be sleeping in this van.


Mike Bender  28:42

That’s true. What like our fallback plan is I pull the van up to what is known as a hotel SuChin goes in a hotel and drives away from Hotel, park somewhere in nature. Sleep wake up. Return to hotel pickup SuChin.


SuChin Pak  29:02

Not too early. Not too early.


Mike Bender  29:04

Never too early.


Kulap Vilaysack  29:05

Wow. Wow.


SuChin Pak  29:08

Okay, we decided that that may be that’s more realistic. Yeah, than me pulling out a drawer at times in the middle of the night while everyone’s like SHUT THE FUCKING drawer. You know, like, that may be the thing that saves us but we shall see.


Mike Bender  29:24

Because when you pull out the toilet, you can’t actually pull the fridge out. Because that pulls out underneath. We have to use the toilet sparingly. And so again, it’s like you look at the four members of our family. One doesn’t quite fit if we if we have to boot somebody from the van. It’s gonna have to be SuChin and we even talked about getting a little tent that we just set up like if we’re somewhere where we’re not near a hotel, and we just you know we put on it we put.


SuChin Pak  29:50

And I’ll be in the tent.


Kulap Vilaysack  29:51

You put Nana on the side tent.


SuChin Pak  29:53



Kulap Vilaysack  29:54

That makes right.


SuChin Pak  29:57

I want to be bungee cord so you guys don’t drive off cuz you’re so frustrated, but but we will be.


Kulap Vilaysack  30:03

Yeah. What’s the what is the plan? What’s the first adventure? Where are we headed towards?


Mike Bender  30:10

I think we’ve kind of like honed in on national parks. So I think we’re gonna do like some national parks I don’t know that we’ve figured out exactly the first one but Utah is very interesting to us we’re gonna go like not too far at first just in case it’s a disaster we have to come back so we’re we’re gonna like take baby steps, baby steps .Yeah, we might be starting solving we might be solving that’d be a first or first trip.


Kulap Vilaysack  30:39

On Tik Tok. I follow a lot of people who have do van life they do. You know, this is a different, a different vibe. And I think people would want to see and a lot of your followers will want to see these adventures. So I really hope you guys take a lot of pics and videos.


Mike Bender  30:56

I think we will and and I’m really, you know, sincerely very much looking forward to it because for me it is an opportunity to get out. I have been in Santa Barbara for over 30 years. And no that’s a joke, but I’m three years actually is the real I’ve been in Santa Barbara really for three years. I can’t go that far because of some of the limitations for this van is my freedom.


Kulap Vilaysack  31:18



Mike Bender  31:18

So I’m excited about that.


Kulap Vilaysack  31:46

Very exciting setting.


Kulap Vilaysack  32:22

Before we let you go, we would be foolish not to ask you about something. Mike Bender, because you came before you revealed a lot about SuChin’s dishwashing ability is tough to say. You’ve talked to us about meat that she’s left upon her pan. I’m so curious, what’s up with her cutting board Mike, what’s going on with SuChin’s cutting board.


Mike Bender  32:52

Glad that you fit this one in a while back, we ordered cutting boards. And one of the issues that SuChin and I find ourselves having is that like she just breaks all the cutting board rules she’ll like cut raw meat and throw some vegetables on it. And then like put like the kids like sandwich make like turkey sandwiches. And I’m like, Yeah, you can’t do that you have to like have cutting boards for certain things. So we decided, you know, to stay together in our marriage but to separate our cutting boards. And so that became sort of like like a you have your cutting boards. I have my cutting boards. But what I started to notice was SuChin is she was like using her cutting board to just like cord. Everything that was here is like instead of cleaning up, it’s a little bit goes back to our pans. Remember, she would like leave the food in there. So now she just it’s like she leaves everything. But within the borders of the cutting board and for her. That’s because it’s your cutting board. Right? Like that’s her sovereign territory. She’s like okay to leave it here. But what this is, it’s gotten wacky over time. So I started taking photos. And the photos document the insanity of like things hanging off the side of it reminds me a bit of like, Titanic when people were trying to get into the lifeboats. And like too many people were trying to get into a lifeboat. That’s what these cutting boards are like. It’s a too much is trying to happen on these cuttings. This is not a cutting board that’s supposed to hold the amount of things that SuChin is using a four and it’s really come just a waystation versus a cutting board. She’ll leave that stuff, you know, overnight, she’ll just leave it on the cutting board and just sort of like all dress cutting board in the morning.


Kulap Vilaysack  34:43

And are things being cut on the board at all. Are they just being stacked?


Mike Bender  34:47

They’re being cut and stacked and left I mean it’s it’s, I’m telling you, Kulap these cutting boards are like it’s storage. It’s it’s everything. She’s using them for so much.


SuChin Pak  35:00

SuChin what do you have to say about this?


SuChin Pak  35:02

I want to start off by saying that freedom, you know, do we like it? Do we think everybody should have it? Do we think it’s a principle and a value that this country was founded on, that we as human beings want. And so for me, those cutting boards are our free rein. It’s America by categories in America, the West. And to be fair, because Mike likes a very tidy kitchen. I, I just contain it to the cutting board. And I think that that’s fair. I don’t I try not to go outside of the cutting board. So if I, you know, want to leave something open, or if I’m coming back to it, because you know, I come back to it. I just put it on the cutting board. And I know that that little board is freedom.


Mike Bender  35:50

But there’ll be like, like old whipped eggs like like 9pm night, like the morning that have like, hardened and, and become petrified and you’re like, When is she going to get this? Like, when is she going to clear some of that away. And what I ended up doing Kulap, It’s so pathetic, is like, I grabbed all of the things off the cutting board, I washed the cutting board, and then I put her crab back on it. Because I don’t want to like disturb. I don’t want to disturb the sort of collection of things that she’s put on there.


SuChin Pak  36:21

Because it’s freedom. Well, I’m glad because there have been a few times I’ve come out and I’m like, Oh, I’m ready to eat the other half of that gluten free blueberry muffin, and it’s not there. And so it’s good to know that in principle, you understand that sometimes I come back to it. And sometimes I don’t.


Kulap Vilaysack  36:42

I need to see. Let me look. So I need to see these photos right now. We have two slices of an avocado one. I guess there’s a little tiny sliver of avocado. The tiniest sliver left. We’ve got.


SuChin Pak  37:00

Oh yeah.


Kulap Vilaysack  37:01

We got a number of drinks. I guess I’m not surprised by that.


SuChin Pak  37:05

Things are hanging off, but they are technically touching the cutting board.


Kulap Vilaysack  37:11

Yeah, it’s kind of like they’re they we’ve caught them sliding into homebase. So there definitely is a catcher. There’s definitely one item is definitely your catcher but everything else is sort of oddly merging. Like you were racing to just slightly put it on.


Mike Bender  37:31

Kind of artistic.


SuChin Pak  37:32

I look at these. I look at these. And by the way, I fully stand behind every single cutting board. I could tell you exactly my thinking behind every I.


Kulap Vilaysack  37:42



SuChin Pak  37:42

On every photo.


Kulap Vilaysack  37:43

I’m gonna call. There’s some cheating here. Okay, I’m looking at the cutting board. it is a type of art. I’m looking at the one that has the organic butter flavor popcorn. That’s cheating to you’re extending the cutting board, right like that. You’re trying.


SuChin Pak  38:01

And it’s touching it? No, once it touches, if it’s any part of it touching the cutting board. It’s cutting board territory. Listen, if this was a floating raft in the middle of the river, okay, and you had one hand on it on the raft, you would still be floating. It’s just like your life is saved.


Kulap Vilaysack  38:19

And she’s like 1/4 on the rack.


SuChin Pak  38:23



Mike Bender  38:23

Hey Kulap, you made the best metaphor because it’s like homebase if you’re just touching it, right? Like just your foot. You’re still safe. And that’s the ways you can use this.


SuChin Pak  38:34

Okay, all right, okay.


Mike Bender  38:36

Basically, it’s like when you move someone off a one addiction, they just find another like, we got her to clean the pans. You know, I think enough people spoke up and I want to thank the community for speaking up and how disturbing especially the woman that was like I worked for the government. And I tell you, she’s like that is totally unsafe, bacteria grows so fast. Now I want them to look at these cutting boards, please. People speak up. This is what makes a difference. I my voice has been lost in this house.


Kulap Vilaysack  39:05

If you see something, do something.


Mike Bender  39:08

Absolutely, thank you.


Kulap Vilaysack  39:10

And that and I’m looking at the picture with the compostable bags that again are just hanging off, but there’s just a slice of gluten free bread. That’s just did you have two slices? Is it that you changed your mind about that one slice and saving it for later?


SuChin Pak  39:25

Yeah, sometimes I take out too because I’m like, wow, I’m really hungry. I eat one and I’m like, Ah, that was enough. But I may want that for a snack. So let me just save myself a trip to the freezer and leave it hanging out here.


Mike Bender  39:38

Every morning SuChin, makes toast and tea. She takes a bite of the toast. She leaves the rest of the toast on the cutting board. Tea I don’t even know I think she takes a sip. And then this tea just like hangs out for like so long. She never comes back to the tea. Why are we making so much tea, I  always been throwing away this tea or I’m knocking it over because they don’t realize she’s leaving Tirana. There’s so much tea. We rented a place where tea all over the carpet. This is a real problem.


SuChin Pak  40:15

I have a problem with tea i It’s a security blanket. I have to have.


Mike Bender  40:20

You don’t drink. You don’t drink it.


SuChin Pak  40:22

Everywhere? Well, because I’ve got tea sources, you know, along the way. You know, to me, it’s like a relay. I’ve got tea stations. I got one next to my bed. You know, I have one in my office. I have one there. So at any moment, if I feel like tea, I need to know that there’s a tea ready to go. You know, I don’t like the idea of not having tea available.


Kulap Vilaysack  40:45

Wow. Wow. Much like Mike’s bison. Tea is SuChin’s amber gold.


Mike Bender  40:53

Yep. Except I eat the bison. That’s the only difference.


Kulap Vilaysack  40:56

Okay, fair, fair there.


SuChin Pak  41:00

Mike has a beautiful children’s book that is so perfect for this time of year. Like you want to tell people about it.


Mike Bender  41:07

I like that I like that lead into a book called The Most Serious Fart. Which is is about a fart. That takes itself too seriously. And I challenged myself to write a sophisticated children’s book about a farm that was a challenge. And so this isn’t just any part. There’s a fart that listens to Beethoven. in case and sets out to change everything that a fart is sound, the smell everything. Very serious fart. And, and I won’t give away the ending. But I’ve been working on this. And I’m actually I’m very excited. Never thought I’d be writing book about farts. But there you go.


Kulap Vilaysack  41:48

And that’s coming out soon.


Mike Bender  41:49

It’s coming out in October.


Kulap Vilaysack  41:52

And this is your second children’s book.


Mike Bender  41:53

This is actually my this will be my fifth children’s book.


Kulap Vilaysack  41:58

I did not know that. Name them.


Mike Bender  42:00

Oh, damn, Kulap, good. Everything is awkward. The Book About Nothing. The End Is Just The Beginning, Word Panda, which is also in the works at Random House. And then this book, which is The Most Serious Fart. That’s fine.


Kulap Vilaysack  42:14

That’s amazing. Well, Mike, thank you so much for returning. It was cathartic. It was informative. It was just everything that I hoped it would be Mike, honestly. So thank you and thank you, SuChin. Thank you SuChin. I would be remiss.


SuChin Pak  42:31

Listen, yes, we are just here to serve. And I guess I’m open for comments. So we’ll see about this cutting board business.


Kulap Vilaysack  42:39

Yeah. How do we find you on the internet?


Mike Bender  42:41

Yeah. Okay, so here’s the you find me, Jason. Jess. I am Mike Bender on Instagram. Let’s talk again Jesus.


SuChin Pak  42:54

Do you see why you see why can’t mention it to Jason or to Jessica? Who knows what they think about this guy? I don’t know what he was like in college because he is desperate now. Alright, that’s it. Bye everyone.


Kulap Vilaysack  43:07



CREDITS  43:12

Well that’s it there’s more add to cart with Lemonada Premium subscribers get exclusive access to bonus content like where we give you an unfiltered look at the actual last thing we bought subscribe now in Apple podcasts. There’s more ADD TO CART with Lemonada Premium. Subscribers get exclusive access to bonus content like where we tell you about the last item we bought or returned and why. Subscribe now in Apple podcasts. Add To Cart is a production of Lemonada Media. Our producers are Kegan Zema and Tiffany Bouy. Brian Castillo is our engineer. Theme music is by Wasahhbii and produced by La Made It and Oh So Familiar with additional music by APM music. Executive producers or Kulap Vilaysack, SuChin Pak, Jessica Cordova Kramer, and Stephanie Wittels Wachs. Be sure to check out all the items we mentioned today on our Instagram at @AddToCartPod. Follow Add to Cart wherever you get your podcasts or listen at free on Amazon music with your Prime membership.

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