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Adult Harder: Unlock the Secrets of Secret Menus That are Secret

Pssst. Hey, you. Do you like food? SHHHH! Not so loud! We're talking secret menus on the podcast this week...we're giving a whole rundown of who's who and what's what in the dark, seedy underbelly of black market foodstuffs, including a whole segment on calming yourself down because what you probably think is a secret menu isn't actually a secret menu. Then we open the kimono on a few honest-to-goodness secret menu items in Chicago, Los Angeles, and New York, and then we're joined by Austin, Texas food blogger Emily Teachout, who schools us real good on why people love secret menus, and who also gives us the lowdown on the best kept secrets of the Austin food scene!

Hungry for more? Of course you are! Check out Emily's Instagram and Twitter (though Emily made it very clear that her Instagram is VASTLY superior to her Twitter, so if you have to choose one, you know what to do), and her wonderful blog is available at A Time to Kale!

And hey, if you want to get down with the magic of Torchy's Tacos, click here for a shot of something absurdly delicious that isn't technically one of their secret menu items, but it's a monthly special that you can only get sometimes, and dios mio, is that a spicy Thai beef taco with crushed peanuts?!?!

And check out the rest of Torchy's goodness at

Adult Harder: Avoid the Emergency Room Like a Responsible Adult

Look, is it easy to keep yourself from sticking power drills through your palm flesh? No. But is it important to stop doing that? Heck yes! Emergency room visits are no treat, despite the fact that George Clooney was so dreamy in that one show about ERs, so this week, the Professors Smith are giving you some A+ tips on how to not injure the hell out of yourself, with a bit of help from Mandie Czarnecki, a Physician Assistant from St. Louis who has worked in the ER for almost a whole decade now. Wow, that's a long time! (Also, they discuss ass goblins.)

And if you're interested in checking out those selfie-related injuries on Wikipedia, click here, you macabrely curious brain, you!

Adult Harder: Contribute to Christmas Dinner Like a Champ

This week, the Smiths are going all in on this whole "family" thing by making the bold suggestion that it's time for you to adult up and bring some homemade goodness to your holiday party. What's that, you say? "I'm worse at cooking than I am at adulting"? No problem! The professors have some of their own family recipes for you to try, and because those are destined to probably fail, then they kick it over to a real expert, Rorie Raimondi!

You can find Rorie's good-as-hell recipes and food blog at, which is where you'll find the recipes for the delicious noms she shared on the show. You can also follow her on Instagram, where you'll find more good-looking photos like these:


Clayton's Grandma's Bourbon Slush


  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups bourbon (or, you know, a whole bottle, Grandma-style)
  • 6 1/2 cups water
  • 1 cup tea (prepared)
  • 2 6-ounce packages of lemonade concentrate
  • 1 6-ounce package of orange juice concentrate

Mix all ingredients together in a big ol' plastic container, then pop that sucker into the freezer 'til it gets all good and hard. Then take it out of the freezer and let people scoop away at it as it thaws. Mmmmmmmm.


Ryan's "Signature" Cocktail

This recipe is so dumb, it doesn't even warrant being included. 


Ryan's Mom's Friend's Filipino Mini Egg Rolls

Wrapper ingredients:

  • 1 pkg. Spring roll wrappers, cut in 4 squares
  • Peanut Oil

Filling ingredients:

  • 1lb. lean ground pork
  • 2 cups shredded or finely chopped carrots
  • 1 and 1/2 cups finely chopped white onion
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1 and 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp pepper and 
  • 1 tsp. Accent seasoning

Mix all filling ingredients together thoroughly. Set 1 spring roll wrapper in front of you like a diamond. Place 1 tsp of the mixture in the center of the spring roll wrapper. Begin by tucking both sides inward and begin rolling away from you, bottom to top. Pan fry in peanut oil until browned and crunchy.

Serve with plum sauce, sweet and sour, soyracha or, I don't know, whatever sauce you want. What is this, a dictatorship? 


Clayton's Aunt's Super-Good Sesame Pork Tenderloin


  • 4 pork tenderloins
  • 1/2 cup (or more!) soy sauce
  • 2 tsp. ground ginger
  • 3-4 Tbsp. brown sugar
  • A bit of honey (but NOT a Bit-O-Honey candy, totally different)
  • 1/2 tsp. black pepper
  • 4 cloves garlic, pressed
  • 1/4 cup sesame seeds

Combine the above ingredients, minus the tenderloins, and heat slightly on the stove or in the microwave, just to melt the brown sugar. Pour 3/4 of the marinade over the meat and marinate for 4-5 hours, turning occasionally. 

Discard marinade. Place marinated meat on a pan with edges and back, uncovered, at 350 degrees for 75 minutes. (That's one hour and fifteen minutes to those of you without calculators.) Turn the meat occasionally as it cooks, basting with the remaining marinade periodically.

Slice it all up, then eat it like crazy.


Sweet Potatoes with Yogurt and Cilantro-Chile Sauce

This one comes from The New York Times, and while we could cut and paste it here, that seems like an intellectual property no-no, and plus, Clayton's too lazy to do that, so here's a link where you can find it yourself! Clayton also mentioned a recipe from The New York Times that he uses for sweet potatoes with yogurt and cilantro-chile sauce. He could copy and paste it here, but that would cut out of his nap time, you can find that goodness for yourself by clicking here!

Adult Harder: Decorate for the Holidays Like a Serious Real Person

Some people think decorating for the holidays is easy, and that's absolutely correct. Tape some Christmas lights to your couch, and you're all set! Well, that's what the Professors Smith thought, anyway. But then Hollis Scarborough of Silvercreek Creative came along and blew their minds to Christmas pieces. She shares her next-level holiday decorating tips this week, and the Smiths add a few of their own ideas, and, spoiler alert: They're amazing, and VERY smart.

During the show, Clayton mentioned his ever-growing list of absolutely amazing and ridiculous ornaments on Amazon. Check out the insanity here, and then buy your favorites and send them directly to the Media Empire Media offices, BECAUSE WE NEED THEM.

Oh, and here's Ivanka Trump's Thanksgiving hellscape--I MEAN TABLESCAPE. It's just the best.

Adult Harder: Communicate with Laser-Like Focus

Look, let's face it: Communication is hard. And it's not made any easier by the fact that digital platforms give us a pretty good GD excuse to say things to people without having to actually talk to them. But it's important to know how to communicate well, because poor communication is the root of fights, and of poor work evaluations, which is a VERY grown-up thing to be worried about. This week, author and teacher Ben Tanzer joins the Smiths and helps them crack the code on how to communicate like a serious person.

Click here to read the Axero article and here to read the Inc article, both of which we've decided are pretty ignorant as far as "ideas about millennials" go.

And check out Ben Tanzer's books on Amazon, 'cause the man is a genius. NO JOKE.

Adult Harder: De-Stress Already

Boy, stress is sure awful. Not only does it cause anxiety, but, as the Smiths learned this week, it can lead to sudden and nigh-inexplicable death. Just absolute, total death. So join the guys as they dive into the wonderful world of de-stressing and share some great tips on how to relax your mind with special guest Victor Mazzeo!

As part of the episode, Ryan asked Victor if he could share some resources with our listeners on how to de-stress. Victor went above and beyond, and here are some books that he recommends for anyone dealing with too much stress in their lives:

“Awaken the Giant Within” – Tony Robbins
“The Power of Now” – Eckhart Tolle
“A New Earth” – Eckhart Tolle
“Peace is Every Step” – Thich Nhat Hanh
“The Compound Effect” – Darren Hardy
“Eat That Frog” – Brian Tracy
“You are a Badass” – Jen Sincero
“10 Minute Mindfulness” – SJ Scott & Barrie Davenport
“10% Happier” – Dan Harris
“The Big Leap” – Gay Hendricks

Victor also sent along some great audio options for anyone who prefers not to read words with their eyes! In addition to TED Talks and any lectures by Dr. Wayne Dyer, you can check out the Calm app at!

And finally, if you're struggling with anxiety or depression, and you need additional resources or someone to talk to who can help guide you through it, here are some great national organizations that can help:

Suicide Prevention Lifeline

Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration:

Adult Harder: Handle Ghosts Like a GD Boss

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Neil Tobin


Ghosts are a part of a real adult's everyday life. Don't believe us? Give the Smiths a chance to change your mind. Don't believe them? Well, that's valid. But maybe Neil Tobin, Necromancer will help convince you. With Neil's help, Clayton and Ryan talk about their own experiences with ghosts (or not-ghosts, depending on where you fall on that issue), how to find ghosts, how to get rid of ghosts, and how to live with ghosts when you can't manage to make them leave.

If you want to connect with Neil Tobin, Necromancer, you can find him (and book him for private events) at his main website, Necromancer Events, and don't forget to check out his new show, Near Death Experience, winner of the Audience Choice Award at the 2017 Indianapolis Fringe Theatre Festival!

Adult Harder: Halloween Better

This week on the podcast, the Smiths tackled the tricky (-or-treaty) topic of Halloween costumes, and how to wear one like a GD adult. They were joined by Shannon Downey, who is just about the most famous person in the world since Vogue published that feature about her "Boys Will Be Boys" embroidery and her work at Badass Cross Stitch

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Shannon Downey

Social Justice Advocate and All-Around Badass

During the interview, Shannon cooked up a new slogan for dealing with Halloween costume decisions: "When in doubt, k(NO)w." It's pretty brilliant, and, as promised, we've designed a t-shirt with the slogan, which you can find in the MEM shop. 100% of the proceeds from the sale of this shirt will go to Asian Americans Advancing Justice - Chicago!

Proceeds go to Asian Americans Advancing Justice-Chicago!

Shannon also promised us a photo of her flower costume from sixth grade. She and her mom both did a LOT of digging to find the picture, but unfortunately, they couldn't find instead, Shannon sent us some shots of a few of her other favorite costumes from Halloweens past-Daryl from The Walking Dead, Smurfette, and Michaelangelo (the Ninja Turtle, not the artist)--plus a bonus photo of her dog Maggie dressed as Banksy.

And finally, because Shannon is the best person in the world, she also offered to serve as your own personal Jiminy Cricket when it comes to your costume conscience, so if you're not sure if your Halloween costume is all adult and responsible and shit, tweet her a photo @shannondowney and she'll let you know if you get the green light.

Now get out there, Halloween better, and be adult AF.

Adult Harder: Throw a Swanky Cocktail Party


Percy Rodriguez

Beverage Director, The Vine NYC

This week, we bring on a surprisingly high-end guest, Percy Rodriguez, who has worked in wine, cocktails, and mixology with some pretty impressive chefs, including Mario Batali and Laurent Tourondel. With Percy’s cocktail guidance, we dive into the grown-up world of luxurious liquors and talk about the finer points of hosting a real swanky-ass cocktail party. This ain’t your college kegger, folks...this is the adult AF version of drinks with your friends, and there’s a lot to consider if you want to cocktail right.

  • Get some friends
  • Pick a date and time
  • Send invites to those friends you supposedly got in Step 1
  • Have some foodstuffs on hand
  • Make a playlist
  • Clean your house
  • Dress like a grown-up
  • Learn how to make some killer cocktails

To help us with that last part, we ask Percy for his take on the top three cocktails every adult should offer at a cocktail party, and the recipes are below!

Percy also recommended we check out the Savoy Cocktail Book, so click the link and check it out on Amazon!

He also discusses the importance of some supremely impressive ice cubes, and we found a couple molds we thought you might like, here and here.

Oh! And before we forget, here's Ryan's Spotify playlist, as promised!

Ryan's Not-As-Good-As-Percy's Cocktail


  • 2 oz El Jimador or Milagro tequila
  • 2 oz fresh lime juice
  • 1 oz Cointreau
  • 1/2 oz agave nectar

Combine all ingredients in a shaker with some ice and just shake the shit out of it for about 20 seconds. Strain the cocktail into a new glass with new ice, because this isn't fucking amateur hour, and throw a little slice of lime in that motherfucker. Also, if you want salt on the rim, go for it, but do that shit before you pour in the margarita, unless you like drinking your booze off the floor.


Percy's Cocktails

Aperol Spritz

  • Aperol
  • Prosecco
  • 1 orange
  • Club soda

Fill a wine glass with ice. Pour 1 to 1 1/2 inches of Aperol into the glass. Follow it with some tasty-ass Prosecco until the glass is 3/4 full. Squeeze an orange into the glass, and drop in an orange slice. Then top that motherfucker off with club soda and enjoy the hell out of it.


Rum Punch

  • 2 oz aged rum
  • 2 oz pineapple juice
  • 1 oz grapefruit juice
  • Splash of lime juice
  • 1/2 oz simple syrup
  • Fresh nutmeg
  • Peychaud's bitters

Add the rum, pineapple juice, grapefruit juice, and lime juice into a shaker with some ice. You know what? Throw that simple syrup in there, too. Give it a good shake. Shake it like you fucking mean it. Then open the shaker and grate in some fresh nutmeg, and pour the whole damn thing into a tall glass. Sprinkle four or five dashes of Peychaud's bitters on top, and just love your life so much.



  • 2 oz of Rittenhouse or Michter's rye
  • 1 oz Antica sweet vermouth
  • 3-5 dashes of orange bitters

Add rye, vermouth, and bitters into a glass with ice. Stir for about 20 seconds, until that glass is frosty as hell. Then put some fresh ice into a rocks glass and strain the cocktail into it. Boom. You did it.

Adult Harder: Curse with Some F'ing Gravitas

On the pilot episode of Adult Harder, college professors Clayton Smith and Ryan Smith dissect the finer points of cursing. But not cursing like you’ve been doing. Cursing like adults curse. Because when you’re a real adult, you follow some classy-ass guidelines, like:

  • Don’t just fucking curse fucking constantly.
  • Don’t just use the same curse word(s) all the time. Mix it up. And don’t be afraid to make up your own curse words.
  • Don’t be a dick about it.
  • Use curse words to emphasize a point, but, again, don’t be a dick about it..
  • Practice using the C-bomb well.
  • Do NOT use the N-word. Ever. EVERRRRRRRR.
  • Broaden your vocabulary. Try new words! They’re fun!

We also spoke with fellow college professor Cara Dehnert Huffman about her favorite curse words, and we played a game with a title we’re not sure we should spell out here on the Internet. It is very explicit.

Research materials for this episode included Holy Sh*t: A Brief History of Swearing by Melissa Mohr. It is one hell of a fun read.

BONUS: We also found this cursing game called Creative Cursing, and it looks like a lot of GD fun!