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Friday Mailbag & Open Thread: Chop Chop

Ruben discusses the Red Stars’ playoff berth, kitchen adventures, and more

Photo via Chicago Red Stars

Congratulations to the Chicago Red Stars for making the playoffs for the fourth year in a row. After a start plagued with injuries and international call-ups, you scrapped, clawed, and scammed your way to the post season. Sam Kerr is the best woman in the game, and arguably one of the best regardless of gender, and I’m glad she gets to represent our city week in and week out. Mazeltov and good luck in the playoffs.

I feel like now is a good time, while I’m talking about the Red Stars, to eat some crow. Rory Dames, you should not be fired. You are a good manager, and while the football you coach may sometimes not be the most aesthetically pleasing to watch, your players clearly love playing for you, and the rally you guys put on in the second half of the season was great to see. I’ve been critical of you and your tactical style for a while, but the four playoff appearances in a row show that it does work, and works well. Let’s hope you can get over the hump this year and bring home a trophy.

Things are looking less good on the other side of Toyota Park at the moment. Still in the middle of their post-Bavarian Vacation, the Chicago Fire have been quiet of late, and that’s probably the best thing for them at the moment. We can all take a breath, relax, and catch up on things we like to do but must be put aside for the Men In Red. For example, I’m building a PC, It would have been done already, but I ended up with a faulty GPU, I need to return it and get a new one.

However, some members of the Fire Community are doing something much cooler. Former HTIOT contributor Jake Payne designed this African Heritage scarf, which was approved for sale and distribution at the Section 8 Chicago board meeting this past week.

It looks cool and celebrates a part of the Fire community that doesn’t get the kind of attention and solidarity it deserves. Black players are part of the backbone of the Fire’s history, from DeMarcus Beasley to David Accam, and it’s cool to see them and the community of black Fire supporters being celebrated. Plus the design is super rad.


And now for this week’s Mailbag questions. You can send me questions every week on Twitter using the hashtag #AskHotTime.

This is a real interesting question, because the only way I can think of how to answer this question is through logic, because I’ve never actually eaten anything cooked by any of the players.

I assume, as a general statement, that it would be a veteran. They just have more life experience and the knowledge base to be able to improvise well in the kitchen. Good cooking is all about improvisation. I’d imagine the best cooks have a family as well, cooking for other people is much more enjoyable and rewarding than cooking for just yourself, and the best way to do that is to have a family, or at least a stable relationship. But at the same time, the inspiration and creativity of youth cannot be underestimated.

So, with all that said, I think the best cook on the Fire is Matt Polster. He has both youth and experience, as well as (unfortunately) a lot of free time to get gud.

As for the Red Stars, it’s probably just Sam Kerr. She’s good at everything. Besides her, I’d say either Yuki Nagasato or Casey short. Both strike me as passionate people, and that translates well into the kitchen. (Plus I love Japanese food. so there’s a bit of bias there.)

(If this gets back to any of the players on either roster, and you want to fight about it, DM me and I’ll give you my address so you cans send me samples. I’m allergic to fish and nuts.)