This week on the Cripescast Charlie is joined by Dan Egan, author of the New York Times best-selling book “The Death and Life of the Great Lakes”. Charlie and Dan discuss many environmental issues including the history of the St. Lawrence Seaway, the positive and negative effects of phosphorus, agriculture and more. Be sure to pick up a copy of his latest book “Devil’s Element: Phosphorus and a World Out of Balance” which is available now.
Episode 136 - Laura Ramsey
Joining Charlie on the Cripescast this week is actress and fellow Wisconsinite Laura Ramsey. Laura shares stories from when she moved to LA at 19 years old including landing her first acting gig, the culture shock she experienced upon arrival, and what she missed most about Wisconsin. The two brainstorm some Midwest-inspired flavors for her new botanical lolly company Nias Arc, including Old Fashioned and Brat-flavored popsicles.
Episode 135- Katherine Blanford
Comedian and co-host of the comedy podcast “Cheaties” Katherine Blanford joins Charlie on the Cripescast this week. She shares stories from her career including when she got called to be on the Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon. Katherine talks about growing up as a horse girl, being a cleaning lady at the London Olympics, and how she balanced being a full-time nanny and stand-up comedian for eight years. The two bond over attending private Catholic schools growing up which leads to Katherine remembering her best confessions from second grade.
Episode 134 - Donald Driver
Former Green Bay Packers wide receiver Donald Driver joins Charlie on the Cripescast this week. He shares stories from his time as a Packer including going through his first training camp, how former GM Ron Wolf bought him his first jacket, and what it felt like to win the Super Bowl. Having had a rough childhood in Houston and growing up in poverty, Donald explains that his “hardships have allowed him to be the person he is today.”
Episode 133 - Jill & James Iverson
Manitowoc couple Jill and James Iverson join Charlie on the Cripescast this week to talk about their recent sailing trip on America’s Great Loop. Jim explains that while it isn’t as rigorous as climbing Mount Everest, being a “looper” is a rarer accomplishment. Traveling over 6,000 miles, the Iverson’s recount their trip that started in Lake Michigan, went down the Mississippi River, through the Gulf of Mexico, back up the East Coast and through Canada to return home in just over a year. Having spent their 40th wedding anniversary aboard their boat, Jill and James give advice for those who wish to set sail and tie the knot. Jill, being a birder and a fisher, allowed Charlie to geek out about both of her hobbies, and the two compared their Walleye fishing techniques.
Episode 132 - Danny Jolles
Actor and comedian Danny Jolles joins Charlie on the Cripescast this week. You may recognize him from his role in the new Brad Pitt and Margot Robbie movie “Babylon” or from his recurring role as George on The CW’s “Crazy Ex Girlfriend”. He and Charlie discuss touring, social media’s impact on stand up, and Danny’s new interactive comedy special on YouTube called “You Choose”. They bond over their deep love for the 1991 movie “Hook”, trade airport conspiracy theories and Danny even shares a few stories from his time as a floor walker at Blockbuster. Be sure to check out Danny’s special "You Choose" on YouTube and follow him on all the platforms @dannyjolles or check out his website dannyjolles.com.
Episode 131 - Berens Sisters (Part 1)
This week Charlie is joined by half of his sisters Betsy, Maggie, Mary Kate and Bridget, for a special episode of the Cripescast. They start the episode by opening a bottle of wine with a screw and hammer and share stories about growing up with 12 siblings. Highlights include Maggie’s story about Charlie getting picked up by the cops at 17, voting games that pin sibling against sibling, and Charlie getting advice on his upcoming commencement speech.
Episode 130 - Paul Virzi
Stand up comedian Paul Virzi joins Charlie on the Cripescast this week. You may recognize him from his podcasts “The Virzi Effect” or “Anything Better” that he co-hosts with Bill Burr, or from his most recent comedy special “Paul Virzi: Nocturnal Admissions” on Netflix. Paul shares the story of how he got into stand up and how having a family has changed his outlook on life and comedy. He and Charlie get into the specifics about shooting a comedy special and the importance of setting long and short term goals. They also talk about their first jobs, Paul as a pizza delivery man and Charlie a pretzel roller.
Episode 129 - Ian Bagg
Comedian Ian Bagg joins Charlie on the Cripescast this week. They compare the Midwest to Canada and pond hockey to river hockey. From working for a traveling carnival in Australia to mining gold in Canada, Ian walks us through his journey to comedy and his love of crowd work. Ian and Charlie trade some regional sayings, winter advice, and Ian shares about the time he accidentally got someone fired.
Episode 128 - Pete Lee
Stand-up comedian Pete Lee joins Charlie on the Cripescast this week and the two get lost on tangents about hotel and public restroom etiquette. He talks about growing up in Wisconsin, coming up in the Twin Cities’ comedy scene, and the time he almost opened for Bobcat Goldthwait. Pete’s dog Diesel makes an appearance as he opens up about his cursed streak of TV shows being cancelled right after he’s made a guest appearance including “The Days of our Lives,” along with many other funny stories.
Episode 127 - Lara Beitz
Comedian Lara Beitz joins Charlie on the Cripescast this week to discuss her stand up career and growing up in the Midwest. Lara talks about coming up in the Milwaukee stand up scene, touring with Joe Rogan and Marc Maron, and, of course, bird watching. Lara indulges Charlie’s obsession with birds by sharing a few stories of her own fowl entanglements. Let’s just say they follow a goose down the rabbit hole.
Episode 126 - Center for Veterans Issues
On a special Veterans Day episode of the Cripescast, Charlie is joined by Ed Garza, CEO and President for the Center for Veterans Issues (CVI), Dr. Berdie Cowser, Director of Development and Housing for CVI, and Jason Johns, V.P. of Corporate and Community Relations for CVI. The Center for Veterans Issues is a nonprofit based in Milwaukee that helps veterans across Wisconsin. Along with two returning guests, Ed and Jason, Dr. Berdie makes her debut on the Cripescast and talks about her career with CVI, the challenges female veterans face, and what it means to be named Milwaukee County’s 2023 Veteran of the Year. They share updates on current projects happening at CVI, ways to give back, what Veterans Day means to them, and provide advice on how to thank a veteran for their service. Interested in learning more about CVI or want to donate? Head to cvivet.org to read about what they’re doing, how you can help, and more.
Episode 125 - Voting in Wisconsin
Investigative journalist and state government reporter for Wisconsin Watch, Jacob Resneck, joins Charlie on the Cripescast this week. Jacob outlines how to register to vote in the state of Wisconsin, he highlights some important seats that are up for election this year, and he debunks some common misconceptions that circulate during election season. Be sure to head over to myvote.wi.gov to register online, locate your polling place, and find any other information for this election season.
Episode 124 - Hansel Canady
From giving his first hair cut at 10 years old in the projects of South Side Chicago to becoming the official barber of the Green Bay Packers, Hansel Canady has seen and cut it all. In fact, during this week’s interview you’ll be able to hear him give Charlie a fresh new haircut at Hancan Barbershop in Green Bay. He and Charlie talk about how he became the Packers’ barber, his transition from Chicago to Green Bay, and the racism he faced during that time. “What happens in the barber shop, stays in the barber shop” is the motto Hansel lives by. It’s even on the wall as soon as you walk in. As an advocate for counseling and therapy, Hansel loves offering his chair as a safe space for his clients to open up. From AJ Dillon to Matt LeFleur to Charlie Berens, he enjoys making his clients to look and feel great. Make sure to book your appointment with Hansel or his team at Hancan Barbershop in Green Bay at hancanbarber.com and make sure to follow Hansel on social @hancanbarbershop. Follow the Cripescast at @cripescast and Charlie @charlieberens and make sure to find us on Patreon patreon.com/charlieberens for exclusive content and behind the scenes footage. The music behind the advertisements is "Manic Polka" by Kevin McLeod.
Episode 123 - Alannah Vellacott
Alannah Vellacott, a coral restoration specialist, marine ecologist, and ocean advocate, joins Charlie on the Cripescast this week.From playing in a mangrove ecosystem while growing up in the Bahamas to having a career in coral reef rehabilitation today, Alannah’s life has been closely intertwined with the ocean. Alannah also recounts her experience working on Samuel L. Jackson’s documentary series “Enslaved” as a diver helping map shipwrecks from the Atlantic Slave Trade. She discusses the importance of representation of Black women in her industry and how her social media aims to bring lessons from the ocean to all.
Episode 122 - Shapel Lacey
This week stand up comedian Shapel Lacey joins Charlie on the Cripescast. Even though his comedy career started on a dare, he eventually wound up at the Just For Laughs New Faces showcases in 2019. He explains how being adopted into a white family at the age of 15 affected his life, his comedy, and ignited his passion for competitive cheering. Use promo code CRIPES at milwuaukeeimprov.com for free tickets to Shapel's shows on October 21 and 22 and be sure to find more dates to see Shapel at shapellacey.com. Find him on Instagram @shapellacey. Find the Cripescast on all platforms @cripescast and find us on Patreon for exclusive content, extended cuts, behind the scenes and more at patreon.com/charlieberens. The music behind the advertisements are "Double Polka" and "Manic Polka" by Kevin McLeod
Episode 121 - White House Conference on Hunger and Nutrition
Live from Washington DC, Charlie sits down with a variety of guests from the White House Conference on Hunger, Nutrition and Health. Guests include: Suzy Delong, Chef, Executive Director and Founder of LaSoupe in Cincinnati; Carrie Mess, a Wisconsin Farmer and agricultural influencer; Sherri Tussler, Executive Director at the Hunger Task Force in Milwaukee; Dr. Dave Nayak, a Chicago-based doctor turned farmer; Avani Rai, 4-H member and 17-year-old student; Tara Roberts Turner, a Waupaca farmer and General Manager of the Wisconsin Food Hub Cooperative.
Episode 120 – Chris Distefano
Stand up comedian and host of the “Chrissy Chaos” and “Hey Babe!” podcasts Chris Distefano joins Charlie this week. Chris talks about his first job as a court attendant at the U.S. Open and how he smuggled in Gatorade for star tennis players like Roger Federer and the Williams sisters. He also shares how he quit being a physical therapist to pursue a career in comedy and the weird things that he’s encountered while doing stand up in the Midwest. Chris and Charlie discuss how they were both bad altar boys back in the day, their trip to London and how Chris is going to stay in Charlie’s cheese room in Milwaukee.
Episode 119 - Michael Yo
This week comedian Michael Yo joins Charlie on the Cripescast where the two talk about Michael’s career, stand up and his new special “I Never Thought” on YouTube. Michael shares stories of being on “Chelsea Lately” and how his kids have changed his comedy. The two compare their time as red carpet hosts and Michael gives his best advice for anyone wanting to break into the entertainment industry. Find Michael’s special “I Never Thought” on YouTube and find him on all social platforms @michaelyo. Find us on Patreon at patreon.com/charlieberens and on all social platforms @cripescast and @charlieberens. The music for the Cripescast is “Double Polka” by Kevin McLeod and “Old Wisconsin Jubilee” by Berens and Greuel.
Episode 118 - TJ Therrien
This week Charlie is joined by content creator TJ Therrien. TJ talks about growing up in Minnesota, his goals to break into different areas of comedy and how birth order and his kids inspire his content. The two discuss how TJ started making online videos, how he made it onto Sports Center’s top 10 plays as a ball boy for the Minnesota Twins and whether Wisconsin or Minnesota has more lakes.
Episode 117 - Nick Colletti
This week, comedian and content creator Nick Colletti joins Charlie on the Cripescast. Nick talks about starting out on Vine and his ambitions on the big screen and on stage. The two discuss social media’s role in their comedy and whether Pittsburgh is in the Midwest or not. Follow Nick @nick_colletti and for more info in his shows head to nickcolletti.com. Use code CRIPES at milwaukeeimprov.com to get $5 tickets to his show TONIGHT!
Episode 116 - Charlie Fan Q&A
This week Charlie answers fan-submitted questions! Find us on Patreon patreon.com/charlieberens
Episode 115 - Tracey Ashley
Emmy-nominated screenwriter and comedian Tracey Ashley joins Charlie on the Cripescast this week. Tracey is the head writer for “The Neighborhood”, she's written on “The Last O.G.” and “A Black Lady Sketch Show” and she's gone on tour with Dave Chapelle, Tracy Morgan and many more comics. She talks about her career path, her time in a variety of writers rooms and her comedic influences. Tracey also shares about her experience being in an interracial marriage and how society’s reactions has changed over time.
Episode 114 - Bill Doucette
This week Charlie is joined by musician and comedian Bill Doucette. The two talk about Bill’s time on the East Coast, performing at the State Fair as well as his ties to Wisconsin. Bill explains how he and Charlie met and the work they’ve done together in recent years.
Episode 113 - Tumua Tuinei
This week Charlie is joined by comedian Tumua Tuinei. The two talk about their similar career paths and how they use comedy to honor where they're from. Tumua explains the comedy scene in Hawaii, his start in stand-up and how he’s used social media to help his career take off. They exchange common phrases in Hawaii and the Midwest and Tumua teaches Charlie how to properly do the shaka.