A Substandard Road Trip

Boy, where to start this episode? Well, I think it is most appropriate to start by wishing you all a happy Prime Day.  I hope your city didn’t feature riots when Amazon.com temporarily went down and somehow knew which dog breed was your favorite and showed you a picture of that very specific dog breed to soothe you during your brief hell on earth without access to the fruits of Lord Bezos’ warehouses (praise be upon him).  I don’t mean to be the Grinch here, but I’m just glad that we can finally take down our Prime Day decorations.  The kids have been getting into the tinsel and frankly these Prime Day carols are getting old.  And then you have those obnoxious friends who are so on the ball it’s sickening.  You get their Prime Day cards ONE FULL MONTH BEFORE PRIME DAY with pictures of their beautiful children smiling of their own accord and not because they’re being yelled at to smile because their children are perfect and never ever poop in the tub forcing you to poopify your Apple Watch Nike+ Series 3 Edition – for athletes.

Anyway, while you have been scoring great deals on the latest tech, the Last household has been in chaos over dishwashers.  Let’s get a quick rundown of the dishwasher situation:

  • The old Bosch breaks.
  • It costs so much to repair the old Bosch that CTO Jonathan decides it’s time to buy a new Bosch.
  • He heads to Lowe’s to check out their selection.
  • He finds a 42 decibel Bosch dishwasher that costs far more than anyone should ever spend on a dishwasher.
  • He finds a 39 decibel Bosch dishwasher that costs $200 more.
  • He finds a rebate at Lowe’s for $50.
  • Who are we kidding?  He didn’t need the rebate to justify the 39 decibel Bosch.  With or without the rebate he decides that the 39 decibel dishwasher is what he must have. What is he, a farmer?
  • He orders it from Lowe’s.
  • Lowe’s says they will deliver it on a particular day. JVL works from home that day.  You read that right.  He worked from his house.  Which is filled with children.  Like a savage.
  • Lowe’s does not show up to deliver it on that day.
  • JVL calls Lowe’s. They make empty promises to call him back.
  • JVL gets hangry. He makes a promise on the podcast to buy a 39 decibel dishwasher from Lord Bezos and refuse the delivery of the dishwasher from Lowe’s.
  • JVL shoves some murder meat down his gullet and is less hangry. The dishwasher arrives.
  • The dishwasher sits in the kitchen for a few days.  Shannon uses it to fold laundry.
  • The new dishwasher is installed.
  • The old water bottles don’t fit in the new dishwasher, so new water bottles are required.
  • JVL leaves the protective covering on the dishwasher. Shannon trolls him about it in classic fashion.
  • Does the new dishwasher sound loud to you? It sounds loud to JVL and he shares this on the Twitter.
  • Twitter user and SSEU member Lara Mason tweets a picture of her Bosch that’s magnetic.
  • JVL openly lusts for Lara’s Bosch (no, that’s not a euphemism), but doesn’t admit fault in the selection of a noisy dishwasher from Lowe’s. But Twitter user ADL wonders if JVL’s days as CTO are over.
  • Shannon acknowledges that JVL is working on acquiring Lara’s dishwasher in an even swap.

And you all know what this means: a Substandard road trip.  That’s right, JVL’s going to get the band together to drive to Texas to swap dishwashers with Lara.  But all this seems like a JVL problem.  How does Jonathan get Vic and Sonny to go along on this road trip?  It turns out Vic isn’t all that hard to convince.  Before Vic was an editor he had always wanted to be a truck driver.  Lo, many a Friday afternoons Vic would gaze out the classroom windows at Georgetown pining for the open road, a thermos of coffee, and the hope of a gluttonous truck stop meal at the end of the day.  In his fantasy he’s got a few days’ stubble on his chin, a sleeveless flannel shirt showing his guns, and a Confederate flag strewn across the grill of his truck.  I mean this was the 90s – years before people started toppling Confederate monuments. It was a different time.

Yes, Vic always wanted to be a trucker.  When his friends thought he was at the library studying he was often cruising the beltway in his Nissan Stanza with a CB radio saying “breaker, breaker” far more often than a real trucker would.

Vic always wanted to be a trucker, but his doctor father said he must go to college and have a respectable career. Vic obeyed his father and went to college but after graduation rebelled and did not get a respectable job, opting instead to work for the failing, never-Trump rag, The Weekly Standard.

Nevertheless, when JVL called Vic and asked if he wanted to go on a road trip to Texas to pick up a dishwasher, Vic perked up. Usually JVL is all about going over the top and would have been game to rent a semi for the drive. But JVL’s savings have been depleted by the purchase of the expensive but loud dishwasher as well as all the murder meat his no carb diet requires.

Thankfully, Captain Bill Dwyer — the studly firefighting brother-in-law of Vic who all men want to be and all women want to be with — came through in the clutch. He had a firefighter friend who owns a delivery truck with a lift gate.  Because the Captain is just cool like that.

This scene opens at the Dwyer compound in rural Virginia.  Vic and JVL pull up in JVL’s car.  Vic’s already in trucker form, with his window rolled down and his arm hanging out the window.  He hasn’t yet donned his sleeveless flannel shirt because he didn’t feel he had the credibility to wear it around Captain Bill Dwyer.

Bill has just finished smoking some brisket and has baked some killer rolls as well.  His house smells amazing.  He’s in the middle of giving one of his beautiful children a cello lesson and while she plays he is doing one-armed pushups. 

Jonathan and Vic approach the screen door and overhear the lesson.

Bill: Wonderful, dear, but remember, this piece is in B minor, not B major.  If you’re playing a D sharp it should be only if it’s an…[his delightful child interrupts]

Delightful Child: accidental.

Bill: That’s right!  Oh, hey Vic! JVL!  Great to see you guys!

JVL freezes, transfixed by Captain Bill’s cut arms. I mean, his triceps appear to have been sculpted by the gods.

Captain Bill is such a gentleman that he covers for any awkwardness in a room.  Instead of exacerbating the awkwardness he coolly says: Let’s check out the cargo truck.

They walk outside and JVL eyes the lift gate.

JVL: Is that a Palfinger-MBB C 1000 E?

Bill raises an eyebrow, showing he’s impressed.

Bill: No, this is a Maxon GPSLR.  But it does resemble the Palfinger, because of its [JVL interrups]

JVL: dual hydraulic quad compensating lift.

Captain Bill: That’s right!

Vic: Bill, thanks again for making that call to the judge in Nassau.

The Captain: Oh, Vic, it was nothing.  He owed me a favor.  I saved his life.  Twice.

Vic: Yeah, but without you I’d still be stuck in jail there.  I swear, I must have missed the sign that said it was a teen only section.  I noticed all the beautiful women but I didn’t see any signs.

JVL: Girls.  You noticed all the young girls.  Not women.  Girls.

Vic: Women.  They looked like women.  They didn’t look a year younger than Emma Watson.

JVL: (his tone getting accusatory) In which movie, Vic?  Beauty and the Beast or Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone?

Vic opens his mouth but doesn’t answer.  He can’t say the words.

The Captain: (on point as always) Gentlemen, I’m guessing you need to hit the road.

Vic: Yes (a little too enthusiastically)!  We need to be going.  We still need to pick up Sonny.

To be continued

What’s in store for our beloved podcast hosts?  How did they talk Sonny into this trip?  Who will have control of the music?  Check back soon for our next episode.

2 thoughts on “A Substandard Road Trip

  1. In the bullet about “ADL wonders if JVL’s days as CTO are over” you incorrectly linked to her tweet, instead of mine, where I publicly called for Shannon to fire him. She even replied that she would have most of the board with her all weekend and could probably get the votes.


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