Wednesday, November 22, 2017

11.22.17 Hero of the Day: Patrick McNamara

Bee-otch of the Day honors are awarded Monday through Thursday, Bee-otch of the Week is awarded Friday on



Name: Patrick McNamara
Age: 50
Occupation: founder of
Last Seen: Hudsonville, MI
Awarded For: making cable affordable again

The year was 2011. It was a year after I was in a car wreck and almost a decade since my last raise at work. I bought a car that had so many issues that it was nickel and diming me to death.

In September that year, I made a decision that I didn't want to do, but I had to do it: I dumped cable.

Yep, no more wrestling, no more DVR-ing my favorite shows, none of that. I was reduced to simply my local channels. Thankfully, I did find a few websites where I could watch some of my favorite shows and sporting events on my laptop. I even bought a Chromecast stick for my TV.

But still, it wasn't the same.

As a cord cutter, I had to make sacrifices. I missed out on sporting events and so much more. I never even heard of Rick and Morty until I watched their couch gag from The Simpsons a few years ago.

Not long ago, my mom got Sling TV for her Roku and I liked it. I was considering getting one for myself since it was cheap. Then, I paid a visit to Rivertown Crossings Mall in Grandville. I decided to film the goings on that day and upload it to YouTube. While shooting, I passed a kiosk in the food court by DQ/Orange Julius where a guy was giving some people a sales spiel about some box that can replace cable and satellite. He had signs like "Ditch the dish and cut the cord" and "Make TV Great Again". I walked away since I had filming to do.

While watching my footage, I saw the kiosk again and one of the signs read "". So, I decided to go to the site and even go to their Facebook page. There was the owner, Patrick at another one of his kiosks showing off one of his units. I couldn't believe it. It looked too good to be true: free cable and it's all the major networks and then some. And all I needed was fast speed internet and a TV.

So a few days later, I went back to the kiosk to give one of the units a test. It was simply too fun and too good to be true. So for $350, I became a proud owner of a Freestream unit. I went home, hooked it up and it was awesome.... until the thing started to buffer all over the place.

I grabbed one of the cards at the kiosk advertising the business and called their number. Patrick was on the other line, telling me that it's my ISP's fault. Sadly, he was right. Usually, when my download speed is less than 10 mbps, it will buffer, but since I bitched at my ISP about their slow speeds, viola! They fixed it. Now, I can stream a crap ton of cable channels for free. Even more, Patrick created a Facebook support group for those who are having problems with their units and even makes Facebook Live videos and chats to help make the most out of their PowerStream experience. It's amazing that yes, the units aren't cheap (their cheapest is $150), but it's better than paying $100 per month on cable channels you don't watch.

To me, Patrick McNamara has created something that the cable and satellite companies don't want you to know about. And even more, it keeps getting better and better. Yes, it's not perfect, but then again, the satellite goes out when it rains. Plus, with their video on demand features, you'll never need Netflix ever again. Earlier, I watched last Sunday's Family Guy and am about to watch The Last Man on Earth. Two shows on way past my bedtime. And yes, the streaming quality ROCKS.

Sadly, Pat has shut down his kiosks due to rising rent, but the good news is that his website is alive and well, selling these awesome units. I've even told him that if my mom moves back to Michigan, I would buy her one. That'll be $30 per month Sling won't see and another $10/mo. or so on what Netflix charges these days (don't ask me; besides, I've never watched a single episode of Stranger Things). I recommend it to anybody in need of cutting the cord and using that extra money for better things, especially with Black Friday coming up.

Thanks to Mr. McNamara, he's giving the Comcasts and Charters of the world what they need: a humongous lump of coal.


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