The Second Impeachment Trial. Will it be about democracy and truth, or a made-for-TV reality show?

BANTER BITE BACKSTORY: If ever our respective Banter Bite bubbles reflected who we are, it's this one ...

First, there's Red, the warm and fuzzy mom who, although she earned a theater degree from a prestigious school, never put it to use (unless you count being theatrical and critiquing movies). Her favorite part of going to the movies (it was how she escaped life before the pandemic) was to get the largest bucket of popcorn, which she'd refuse to share with anyone, including her own children. Yes, you read that right! She'd be happy to buy them their own, but not share, as Red admits having an obsession with movie theater popcorn. At the same time, she's become a bit of a news junkie since the 2016 presidential election, not because she's enthralled with politics, but due to the theatrics of it.

And then, there's Black. Loaded with an M.B.A. in International Finance (jointly issued by two prestigious schools), she climbed the corporate ladder in the oil and gas industry, becoming a corporate vice president when few women were even in the industry. (Oh, the stories she has!) She's always been "all business" but if it hadn't been for our mom insisting she'd make a great lawyer (Black's always loved to debate, and Red has been known to compare Black's brain to a computer processor), she'd probably be a very successful trial attorney. Instead, she dug in her heels (her shoes are also the basis of many stories) and decided that was the last thing she'd become.

Of course, combine our personal interests and backgrounds with the impeachment trial and we're sure there'll be some "interesting" conversations we'll try to capture in Banter Bites. Meanwhile, Black's preparing herself to have Red, the frustrated theater major, utter the phrase "This should be a podcast" countless times.

This definitely falls under truth is stranger than fiction. And thinking about it cracks us up.

BANTER BITE BACKSTORY: It's one of those stories where you don't know if it's true or false, but either way, the puns just keep on coming with no end in sight.

It all started when Red received an email from Black and the subject line was "Bear Butt". Since Red had been cooking a lot of pork butt roasts lately (in her new, and now favorite, Dutch oven) she initially wondered if Black was sending her something about some sort of new exotic meat. But then realized Black thinks "cook" is one of those four-letter words you shouldn't use.

But then she opened the email and clicked on the link to Alaska woman using outhouse attacked by bear, from below, and was first horrified and then, realizing it had a "happy ending", knew that it was going to be a source of bathroom humor and plenty of play on words.

Black couldn't resist referencing the comment from the women's brother who said, "I opened the toilet seat and there's just a bear face just right there at the level of the toilet seat, just looking right back up through the hole, right at me." You know his immediate reaction was, "Hole-y shit!"

Red wondered what did the bear make of the situation. Was it as scared as the woman, or did it barely make its radar? And will they ever get to the bottom of how this happened? We know that we'd all like the bare (or it is bear) facts and nothing else.

Sorry, it's just a very punny story … and continues to crack us up.

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Even if you observed a moment of silence on Monday for those who died in this tragedy – do it again today before the flags are raised at sunset.

BANTER BITE BACKSTORY: It's a grim milestone, 500,000 lives lost to COVID-19 – alone, scared, typically away from family and friends with their only comfort coming from healthcare workers covered by protective gear.

Yes, it's a staggering number, half a million, but it's made even more shocking when you realize it's more than the number of American soldiers who died in World War I, World War II, and the Vietnam War -- combined. And, if that isn't enough, think about the fact this "war" has only been raging for about a year. It's almost incomprehensible – 500,000 lives lost in a single year. And at what point does the number start getting so big that we become numb?

Until you hear on the news tributes to individuals or you read heart-wrenching articles with images that capture the loss. Or, you personally mourn the loss of family members and friends. Because it's not just the 500,000 who died – it's the ripple effect of these lives lost. And it's important that we all remember,

It isn't about charts and graphs. It isn't about comparisons. It isn't even about what we should've done differently – or better. It's about losing loves ones. It's about lives lost. Full stop.

Forget about being in the dark, it's like going back to the Dark Ages.

BANTER BITE BACKSTORY: In the midst of the unprecedented winter storm that hit Texas last week, it's coming to light (pun intended) that power outages leaving millions in the dark could have been much worse as the power grid had come dangerously close (as in minutes) to crashing.

Last week, when Red first heard that the Texas power grid had come very close to total collapse, she thought it might have been yet another guest making a dramatic claim, as what he described seemed more like a scene from a Hollywood movie than a nightly news show. Meanwhile, as Black read about the situation, she could only imagine the assorted lawsuits that would be filed – both legitimate and "creative".

But now that official investigations into the situation have begun, the reports are even scarier than a Hollywood blockbuster – millions went without electricity, heat, and water – not to mention thousands who went without medicine and food – all while enduring frigid temperatures. And, people, including children, died.

As the investigations continue, it's becoming more obvious what happened … and what happened is unforgivable. Especially as much of it was avoidable. We get no comfort in knowing it could have been even worse. But at this point, what would be even worse would be not to do everything possible to prevent this from ever happening again.