The Substandard Goes (Wood) Shopping

In which your intrepid hosts brave their own personal Vietnam to make houses for birds.  Well, one house, and we’re not entirely sure if it is suitable for birds.  At least JVL isn’t.  “What, you’re just going to build one giant room for the birds?  You don’t think birds want a parlor, breakfast nook, a formal dining room, a smoking room, a study, a library…” I’m sure you can picture the rant JVL went on when he saw the plans for the birdhouse.  Yeah, at this point we’re pretty much phoning it in here on the Sitcom.  We’re making you use your own imagination.

We recently discovered that JVL keeps a spare (or two…or three) pairs of shoes, belt – pretty much everything – in his van.  We also discovered that the Last family vehicle was a replica of the A-Team van because “JVL loves it when a plan comes together.”  JVL, Vic, and Vic’s son have just pulled up to Sonny’s house to pick him up to carpool to the Saturday morning, paid for by your tax dollars, wood shop class.  Why are Sonny and JVL coming?  JVL wants to check in on the quality of craftsmanship, and Sonny is terrified that Vic’s son will lose an eye with Vic’s lax supervision.  He also hopes to be a one man heckler’s gallery.  He is carrying not one but two travel mugs to the car. Vic throws open the van door and beckons Sonny to come in. 

Sonny: I’m not riding back there with you, Vic.  Just…no.

Sonny gets in the front seat and looks over at JVL who has just cued up the A-Team theme song on his Bose PXKRS-X598430BRS system (don’t bother Googling it, it’s not available to the public). 

Sonny: (groaning) Maybe I do want to sit in the back.

JVL: No, stay up here.  I’ve got a great playlist cued up for the ride.

Sonny: It’s like ten minutes.

JVL: No, we’ve gotta make a stop first.

Vic: Where?

JVL: There’s a safety glasses store we need to stop by to outfit the Matus family.

Sonny: Do you mean a hardware store?

JVL: (guffaws) Do you think I would buy safety glasses at a hardware store?  (scoffs)

Sonny: Well, that’s what normal people would do, so no.

JVL: Exactly.  It’ll only take us a few hours.  There’s one in Bucks County that has a great selection…

Sonny: (interrupting) Bucks county?  Pennsylvania?  No, we’re not going to Pennsylvania today.  No way.

Vic’s son: Do they have XXXL goggles for my dad? (breaks out laughing)

Sonny: You better be careful.  You realize you have half his DNA.  I’d say you’re already in the 99th percentile for head size as it is.

Vic: Easy, Sonny.  Could you limit your teasing to the adults?  (to JVL) I could actually use an XXXL pair of goggles.

JVL: How many times do I…?  They’re not goggles.  They’re safety glasses.  They do not merely protect the eye.  They are a stylish, self-venting piece of eyewear that actually increases the level of precision in carpentry.  You see, the slight yellow tint allows one to see his marks much better.  But Vic, you can’t jump straight into the FLW-42s (chortles).  No, no, no, one cannot merely jump straight into the FLW class of eyewear.  We’ll ease you in with a nice set of TQJ-class glasses.

Sonny pretends to fall asleep and emits a loud fake snore which Vic’s son finds extremely funny.

JVL: (dripping with scorn) I’m sorry, do you want to merely protect your eyes?  I suppose you’ll just grab a pair of (shudders) goggles from the communal pile.

Sonny: If you haven’t noticed, I already wear glasses.  I don’t need goggles.  By the way, is it really necessary that you wear your pretty-boy, designer goggles while you drive?

JVL: (lets out a terrifying growl) They aren’t goggles.  I’m sorry, do you want me to drive you somewhere without wearing driving glasses? Yeah, that’s a great idea.  That sounds really safe.

Sonny: Driving glasses?  What’s that you’re drinking?  Driving juice?

JVL looks at Sonny out of the corner of his eyes with simmering rage, something he has an enhanced ability to do due to his high-quality eyewear. 

Vic (trying to ease the tension): Speaking of drinking, why do you need two coffees today, Sonny?

Sonny: Oh, I have only one coffee.

Vic: Then what’s in the other one?

Sonny: Bourbon.

Vic nods approvingly

Sonny (to JVL):  I’m sure if you drank real man drinks you’d disapprove of me drinking bourbon out of a coffee mug.

JVL: You think I need to drink bourbon to disapprove of the vessel you choose to drink bourbon out of?  How long have we known each other?

Vic (relieved): We’re here.  Let’s go inside and put on our best faces for everyone.  JVL, stop letting Sonny get to you.

They walk inside.  JVL excuses himself to change out of his driving clothes and into his wood shop clothes.

Vic and his son start setting up the materials they’ll need for the birdhouse.  Sonny wanders over to the band saw and reaches out to touch the blade.

Vic: Sonny, do me a favor and just have a seat.  Please don’t touch anything.  I’d hate to see you lose a finger.  And above all, do not touch the belt sander.

Sonny: (head swiveling) Which one is the belt sander?

Vic: The one you’ll be tempted to touch while it’s running.  Trust me, that’s a bad idea.

Sonny (spotting it): Oh boy, I bet I could file my fingernails on that.

Vic: No, that’s a really bad idea.  Just stay where you are.

Cut to ten minutes later.  Everyone is crowded around Sonny as EMTs are wrapping Sonny’s hand in gauze and medical tape.  One of the lenses of his glasses is shattered.  JVL walks into the shop freshly changed into his wood shop clothes.

JVL sighs and rolls his eyes.

JVL: I guess I’m changing back into my driving clothes.

To be continued…

3 thoughts on “The Substandard Goes (Wood) Shopping

    1. Ouch. Harsh grader. Let it be known that there is language in my contract that prevents me from going to watch jokes too frequently. The legalese is something like “phoning it in” which I have already confessed to. I guess my version of phoning it in and phoning it in according to my contract are two different things.


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