56 minutes | Nov 17, 2019
#13 - The Big Time
Being drafted to the NFL, then coming back home to sell real estate, and the importance of following your heart. In this episode, Ryan reminisces about his college football experiences and how important playing several sports was to him in his early years. August talks about how sports served as a prime boredom-killer in his days growing up in Northern Ontario, and also tells the tale of his university water polo days (his team went 0-42, so it’s a short story). Our esteemed guest is former NFL player turned real estate agent Christo Bilukidi. He tells us what it was like to be drafted to the NFL, how it felt to be playing at such a high level surrounded by world-class athletes, and what made him walk away from it all to come back to Ottawa to become a real estate agent. In this episode’s Word Cocktail, August examines the word “mascot” and looks at why sports teams choose certain animals to represent them. Fact or False challenges our guest’s knowledge of some of the quirkiest events in the history of professional football. From bonding over old stories from the gridiron, to giving back to the community that helped you attain success, to pondering the existence of wire-eating rats, this episode of Cavalier Conversations is all about making it to the big time and then finding your way back home. Check out this episode’s sponsor, Amsterdam Brewing Company, at www.amsterdambeer.com
58 minutes | Nov 3, 2019
#12 - The Writer
Shapeshifting, from the desk to the cottage, from the daily grind to writing for the ages. In this episode, August talks about how having to teach writing pushed him to get some of his own work published so that he could pass that knowledge on to his students. Ryan discusses his ongoing struggles with using correct grammar, and August tells the tale of the first time he sent one of his books to an editor, which goes to show how there is always more to learn. Our esteemed guest is three-piece-suit financial advisor by day, writer by night, Shannon Boschy. He talks about how the passing of a relative and the opportunity to stay at an old family cottage gave him the opportunity to reflect on life and what lessons he has to pass on as he approaches age 50. He also discusses the process of trying to get a book published and how the marketing of a book can often be just as important as the actual content. In this episode’s Word Cocktail, August takes a look at the meaning of the word “enthusiast.” Fact or False challenges our guest to decipher the truth in tall tales of the too-wild-to-be-true life stories of two famous authors. From comma syntax, to stranger-than-fiction true stories, to getting away from daily attention demands to let your creativity flourish, this episode of Cavalier Conversations is all about writing. Check out this episode’s sponsor, Amsterdam Brewing Company, at amsterdambeer.com.
55 minutes | Oct 20, 2019
#11 - The Street Philosopher
This one’s for the homies. In this episode, August and Ryan talk about killing time and the misguided ways they’ve chosen to do so in the past. August reminisces about discovering Ottawa by accident on a mountain bike and Ryan tells tales of his high school Freestyle Friday exploits and the ways he and his buddies got caught up in the Jackass craze and did things they perhaps shouldn’t have. Our esteemed guest is photographer, filmmaker, skateboarder, and street philosopher Nick Harrison. He talks about what first pushed him to relocate to Japan and how he gradually became part of the local culture. He also touches on the hard-partying lifestyle he adopted that eventually led to a major spinal injury that prevented him from skating as much as he wanted to, and the different attitudes of the Japanese and Canadian healthcare systems. This episode’s Word Cocktail takes a look at the meaning of the word “leisure.” Fact or False puts our guest’s deductive abilities to the test with two tall tales about skateboarding. From balancing hard-working and hard-partying lifestyles, to learning how to walk again, to the importance of respecting Granny, this episode of Cavalier Conversations is pure street philosophy. Check out this episode’s sponsor, Amsterdam Brewing Company, at amsterdambeer.com
56 minutes | Oct 6, 2019
#10 - The Double Double
Major surgery is hard enough if you only have to do it once. In this episode, August and Ryan share stories of good deeds and kindness, and what motivated them to become—and continue to be—kind to the people around them. August rehashes childhood memories of his mother’s sticker system for teaching kindness, and how it instilled in him the value of doing good things for others early on—even something as small as picking up stray garbage in the street. Our esteemed guest is motivational speaker and two-time double lung transplant recipient Hélène Campbell. She talks about her “lung story” and the individuals and communities that helped her through her journey. She also touches on the importance of positivity and how she has turned her story into a career traveling the world advocating for organ donation. This episode’s Word Cocktail delves into what it means to be tenacious. Fact or False tests our guest’s knowledge of some of the last century’s most important philanthropists and how they strove to help the people around them. From well-practiced one-liners, to navigating the healthcare system, to the satisfaction of doing good things for others, this episode of Cavalier Conversations is a lung story. Ontario residents can register to be an organ and tissue donor today at beadonor.ca Check out this episode’s sponsor, Amsterdam Brewing Company, at amsterdambeer.com
58 minutes | Sep 22, 2019
#9 - The Music
Some people are just born with the beat. In this episode, August shares stories from his early forays into playing music (well, his instrument was the spoons, but anyway...) and his unique take on techno music. Ryan shares his shower-singing habits and the diverse playlists that get him through his work days. Our esteemed guest is prolific local musician Jeff Rogers. He talks about how his relatives discovered his musical talent at a Christmas party when he was young, how he quickly got his start as a professional musician, and how he engages (or not) with the crowd at shows. He also tells us what his version of “making it” might look like and how lucky he feels to have a job where he gets free wine. This episode’s Word Cocktail examines the Greek roots of the word “muse” and how it attained its current meaning. Fact or False tests our guest’s knowledge of the humble beginnings of some of history’s most renowned musicians. From soulful tunes, to pondering the pitfalls of fame, to a unique approach to skin care, this episode of Cavalier Conversations is all about the music. Check out this episode’s sponsor, Amsterdam Brewing Company, at http://www.amsterdambeer.com
52 minutes | Sep 8, 2019
#8 - The Great Escape
You don’t have to be in jail to stage a great escape. In this episode, August and Ryan share stories of their greatest escapes, from leaving home to start their own lives and struggling to acclimatize to new surroundings, to more worldly adventures and how to stay safe by being aware of your surroundings. Our esteemed guest is current police officer and former corrections officer Valentino Possi. He shares what it was like to finally escape his home of Sault Ste. Marie—ironically, by becoming a corrections officer, tasked with preventing a great escape. He also shares how he uses motorcycle road racing as a form of escape, despite the frequent injuries associated with the sport. This episode’s Word Cocktail looks at what it means to be “on the lam.” Fact or False challenges our guest’s deductive abilities with two epic escape stories. From starting a new life in a new city, to finding “the rhythm,” to esoteric knowledge about the mating patterns of grizzly bears (seriously), this episode of Cavalier Conversations is all about escaping to freedom. Check out this episode’s sponsor, Amsterdam Brewing Company, at http://www.amsterdambeer.com
60 minutes | Aug 25, 2019
#7 - The News
What’s in the news? And should you even care? In this episode, August tells the story of the 48 hours in which he tried to be a news junkie—and how that experiment came to an abrupt end because of how depressed it made him. Ryan talks about trying to be more engaged with the news as he gets older. Our esteemed guest is local morning radio host Amal Wahab. She tells us what it’s like to wake up at 3:30 a.m. to go to work, how she keeps up with the most up-to-the-minute news for her job, and why she takes one day every week to turn off her phone and shut it all out. She also shares the nostalgic feelings that keep her using a BlackBerry. This episode’s Word Cocktail delves into the origins of the word “news” and how it took on its current meaning. Fact or False challenges our guest to tell the fake news apart from the truth with two tall tales of newsworthy disasters that each have a particular Cavalier Conversations twist. From seeing 9/11 through the eyes of a high school student, to finding out about tsunamis days after the fact, to the great debate over whether it’s better to tune in or tune out, this episode of Cavalier Conversations is all about the news. Check out this episode’s sponsor, Amsterdam Brewing Company, at http://www.amsterdambeer.com.
57 minutes | Aug 11, 2019
#6 - The Freedom of Discipline
A disciplined lifestyle can sometimes be the most freeing. In this episode, August recounts some absolutely insane stories from his time working in a group home, and Ryan recounts his teenage tale of tenacity in pursuing different sports despite his father’s wishes to the contrary. Our esteemed guest is RCMP officer, crossfitter, and weightlifter Megan Apostoleris. She talks about her training for Fight for the Cure and how its challenges push her outside her comfort zone. She also talks about her approach to de-escalating violent situations, how to be authentic, and how to fuel your passion. This episode’s law-themed Fact or False featured tales of murderous statues and illegal flowers. In The Word Cocktail, August examines what it means to “stay the course.” From dodging airborne TVs, to the small-town feel of Ottawa, to inspiring by accident, this episode of Cavalier Conversations will get you motivated to reach your goals. Donate to the Ottawa Regional Cancer Foundation Fight for the Cure at https://bit.ly/2Z11Ua2. Check out this episode’s sponsor, Amsterdam Brewing Company, at https://www.amsterdambeer.com/.
54 minutes | Jul 28, 2019
#5 - The Joke Gypsy
Making people laugh can be a tough business. In this episode, August and Ryan ask a very important question: what does it mean to be funny, and if you’re not, how do you become funny? They discuss how to use humour to alleviate tension and stress, and also how to accidentally become the centre of attention. Our esteemed guest is comedian Nick Burden, who splits his time between traveling the world as a stand-up comic, lying in bed in his underwear until 3 o’clock in the afternoon, and indulging in his pursuit of single moms. Nick discusses the life of a traveling stand-up comic, how he suddenly jumped from bartending to comedy because of a $100 bet, and how he deals with hecklers on stage. This episode’s Fact or False pairs the culinary origin stories of the ever-popular Buffalo chicken wing and the ubiquitous “Newman’s Own” brand of dressings and sauces. In The Word Cocktail, August looks at the history of “checkmate.” From the dream of dating a flight attendant (purely for the standby ticket discounts), to ruining a birthday party, to how to keep your funny when you’re having an off day, this episode of Cavalier Conversations is all about getting the laughs. Check out this episode’s sponsor, Amsterdam Brewing Company, at https://www.amsterdambeer.com/.
54 minutes | Jul 14, 2019
#4 - The Mulligan Consigliere
Living the dream can often mean working more than ever. In this episode, August and Ryan delve into tales of their time in the restaurant industry, from barbacking, to bouncing, to being a busboy for over six years. Our esteemed guest is Andrew “Gracey” Grace, owner and general manager of Mulligans Golf Bar in Ottawa. After years in a wide range of positions at various food establishments, he made the big leap to starting his own bar—in a location right in the middle of a massive, multi-year construction project. Aggressively negotiated lease in hand, he and his team took on the challenge of building a loyal client base for their open-pit-adjacent bar. This episode’s Word Cocktail examines the origins of the word “bachelor” and its use in both the dating and academic worlds. Fact or False pairs two origin stories: the first use of the term “mulligan” in golf and the creation of a popular soft drink. From training barbacks to “think small,” to keeping a growing business afloat, to making the age-aided transition from “play hard” to “sleep hard,” this episode of Cavalier Conversations is a celebration of life in the restaurant industry. Check out this episode’s sponsor, Amsterdam Brewing Company, at https://www.amsterdambeer.com/.
57 minutes | Jun 30, 2019
#3 - The Network
It’s all about who you know. In this episode, August and Ryan reflect on their first experiences with networking, and how they use those skills today in all areas of life. Our esteemed guest is businesswoman Nik Lemieux. She tells us about popularity in the community, how to be social and stave off boredom through multitasking, and the ups and downs of the world of networking. Also: this episode’s Word Cocktail will help you learn the origins of the word “charisma.” Fact or False brings together tales of two renowned (but unrelated) men named Carnegie who both made important contributions to business and education. From unbelievable work hours, to growing businesses, and how to break the ice and become a masterful conversationalist, this episode of Cavalier Conversations is about bringing together great minds and sharing great ideas. Check out this episode’s sponsor, Amsterdam Brewing Company, at https://www.amsterdambeer.com/.
71 minutes | Jun 16, 2019
#2 - The Grind
Think you’ve had some crazy jobs? In this episode, August and Ryan recount their first forays into the world of gainful employment—which coincidentally both have to do with cleaning up bodily fluids. Our esteemed guest is multi-talented artist Lewis Hill. Before building a career that fuels his creative passions for film, music, and combat sports, he held down wild jobs ranging from stripping paint off airplanes at age 12 to training hunting dogs to retrieve dead ducks in a lightning storm. Yup, you read that right. Also: did George Washington really give up the presidency to go back to being a farmer? Take a stab at unraveling our web of deceit in this episode’s work-themed Fact or False! Find out the origin of the popular expression “putting your nose to the grindstone” in The Word Cocktail! From hay fever, to alligator doctors, to quite possibly the most outrageous excuse ever deployed for quitting a job, this episode of Cavalier Conversations is all about The Grind. Check out this episode’s sponsor, Amsterdam Brewing Company, at https://www.amsterdambeer.com/.
59 minutes | Jun 2, 2019
#1 - The Diesel
This inaugural episode is all about Dam Good Beer! August and Ryan reminisce about beer-related stories from days gone by, and how the bar industry brought them together. Our esteemed guest is Crafty Rob from Amsterdam Brewing Company. He shares stories from the life of a beer rep, recollections about growing up in Germany and being initiated to beer at a young age, and introduces our hosts and crew to a mysterious drink known as a "Diesel." Also in this episode: Ever wonder where the word "carouse" comes from? Find out in The Word Cocktail! Test your knowledge of centuries-old beer history in Fact or False, and discover what happens when we give Crafty Rob (a non-coffee drinker) a shot of espresso in the Espresso Epilogue! Don't miss a second!