We pan up from the steaming hood of a funky old Volvo that's all broken down by the side of the road. Jake stands nearby, in a coat and tie, hollering into his cell phone that he has to miss the important meeting since his car caught on fire. Yes, "flames of fire" were in his car. Oh, poor dear. This reminds me of the time, years ago, before cell phones or Friendster.com, when I met a b.f. for the first time. It was late at night, and a strange man ran toward me. The street was deserted, and I got very nervous. He asked me if I lived nearby, and I asked why. He pointed and said, "Because that car is on fire." I followed the direction his arm pointed toward, and saw that yes, a car was in fact on fire. We called the fire department and made sure they put out the flames. We dated for a little while. I still see him from time to time. It was a great way to meet someone. This concludes this week's installment of Tales From Alex's Harem; back to the show.
Jake can barely get reception on his "crappy phone," and after parroting the line from that damned commercial (we can ALL hear you now, good), finds a better spot for cell-phoning next to a screaming red penis-mobile, a.k.a. a Porsche. A Porsche 355 Spider, to be exact. I only know this because Jake tells a woman who walks up to him and says, "Hi, nice car," the name and all the nerd spec details. You know, I watch All Things Rock on MTV every week, to see what "the kids" are "listening" to. I learn a lot from the hosts, Joel and Benji. One thing I've learned via their lyrics (they're in the band Good Charlotte, if you didn't know) is that "girls don't like boys/girls like cars and money." Which I guess those kids from Maryland found out firsthand, since they are huge now and must have loads of both cars and cash. And since Jake has said again and again that he got no play in college, it really surprises me that he lies to the digger and says yes, his red penis-mobile is really phat, and he'd looove to take her for a drive sometime. Of course, he knows how the engine was built and how the leather upholstery was stitched ("by hand!") and she's all, "What's not to like?" And also of course, the tow truck guy shows up and busts Jake's fake game by asking where he wants the battered, smoking Volvo to be towed to. "Straight to the junkyard?" Jake swivels around and sees that the girl has already walked off. She don't want no junker Volvo man! She wants -- nay, needs -- the man with the red penis-mobile. Jake then does a funny little frustrated Tae Bo-style dance, punching the air and grunting. He didn't know some girls were like that? Sigh. Come here, baby. I don't want no penis-mobile.
Establishing shots of D.C. flash by. Inside the grim, gray, blocky Federal Reserve, the usual tedium is shattered by dramatic music and a computer monitor that reveals a "secure transfer in progress." The Federal Reserve is being hacked into and robbed! For $2 million! The guards at the screen are flummoxed. Another suit stammers, "H-how? This is a secure system!" Because hackers are smart and can house you, dude. The four cyber-thugs have never met IRL, or "in real life" to you non-nerds reading along at home. They're going to rendezvous in Berlin, Germany. Leader of the Pack is amazed that the geek brigade would risk a meeting so soon after the robbery. Jake's mouth parts a little bit when she says she plans to send someone undercover to infiltrate the ring. They have all the background info on Hacker -- he got a PhD at fifteen, went to work for a software company, Banatech, then quit six months in after he accused them of stealing his ideas. He's been underground ever since. And probably more bitter, isolated, and paranoid to boot. Leader of the Pack is all, make a list of who is available to go over to Berlin, and Jake is all, "Uhhh...if ever an assignment screamed Agent Foley..." Leader of the Pack doesn't think so. "Agents train for years to do this kind of thing." Jake disagrees. "They aren't drug dealers, they aren't terrorists! They're nerds! They're nerds gone wild! These are my people." God, that's brilliant. It's the same reason I got so excited over a Turbonegro sticker, or why Keckler is obsessed with this show: Finding your people is rare. When it happens, you have to run toward it quickly. The question is, will Jake be lured away to run with the geeks that live outside of the law? We shall see.