Push, Nevada
Storybook Hero

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One Night in Prufrock and the World's Your Oyster

Taxman!

God, I love that song. But "Think for Yourself" is still better, over all.

The two men (we'll refer to them throughout this scene as "Mr. Wilson" and "Mr. Heath") continue eyeing Jim suspiciously, Mr. Heath finally asking, "You know how to play chess?" Pardon? Mr. Wilson explains, "Chess. Do you know how to play?" Oh. The words now make tons more sense in that slightly modified order. Jim responds, "Yes. I can play." Mr. Heath continues on that "sometimes, on these long drives, we'll start a match. We can finish it when we get back to the big house in Vegas. That cool?" Jim accepts the duel, and Mr. Wilson rationalizes my whole decision to detail the racial makeup of every character in this episode in such painstaking detail with the incendiary line, "White goes first." That's Jim. He announces, "E4." There's no board. They're all savants and it's quirky as all-get-out. Five hours of chess moves, until Jim stops the game for a bit of -- ahem -- color commentary. "Excuse me," he asks, aware that this scenario playing out is as likely as getting anally gang-raped in the weight room by Garry Kasparov and Anatoly Karpov, "You had an opportunity to put my king in jeopardy, but you didn't. You're going for my queen." Mr. Wilson explains that, once they're back in the big house, "we're much more interested in cornering the white bitch." Oh. My. But just as quickly as it dawns on me that ABBA would set the musical-theater world on fire were they only to come along and create from this material a lavish musical spectacular about love and war and chess, the: Truck Of Fire comes screeching to a halt. An armed and uniformed gentleman opens the door and announces, "Prufrock, you made bail." He did? He did. "C'mon, you can ride up front. Unless you'd rather stay back here." Jim looks back and forth at his two new friends, and remembers that, in the world of chess and love and war, maybe you're on nobody's side.

And just like that, we're back at Sheriff Relaxo's station. Why that whole tangent, I wonder? Renting trucks is much more expensive than just setting the camera on a tripod at the jail set and watching Prufrock sleep. Pawn slides Jim's belongings out of a manila envelope and tells him that his car has landed at "the impound lot across town." Jim asks after the handkerchief with writing on it, and Pawn cheerily (and I've had it up to my highest tax bracket with Vassey's delivery of this one-note material) intones, "If you got the sniffles, Jimbo, I can run and get you some tissues." Can it, Pawn. The sound of a ringing SPRINT PHONE -- so amazingly versatile it can sit in a manila envelope overnight without being charged and it rings on cue as soon as it's taken out -- reveals Not His Lawyer, calling Jim to ask, "Who paid your bail?" It wasn't the IRS. Jim asks, "Doesn't it say on the paperwork?" and Not His Lawyer not-at-all-suspiciously responds, "I'll look into it." That's not the kind of thoroughness I'd expect from an Ivy League man. On his way out, Jim notes a long, typed, legal-looking form at the very bottom of which is a line reading, "Phineas Cobb Bail Bonds - Reno, NV." Since Bail Bondsmen represent almost as interesting an area of character development as IRS Agents (unless you're the awesomely spectacular Robert Forster in Jackie Brown, and if you are, well, then, thanks for reading my recaps!), I'm really looking forward to where this thrilling new nugget could take us. But as Jim is one foot out the door, Sheriff Relaxo walks into the room carrying what looks like Astro Jetson's collar-of-the-not-too-distant-future, telling Jim, "You can't leave without your slipper." It's a tracking device, Sheriff Relaxo explains, adding, "We don't want you flying away like Tinkerbell." What a gay thing to say, big man. Sheriff Relaxo clamps it on, explaining, "You cross the county line, bling-bling, you've jumped." I don't think Sheriff Relaxo means "bling-bling" in the way one might usually mean it. By the way. Sheriff Relaxo proclaims Jim "free to go," in that way where he's got no money, got no car, got an animated dog collar around his ankle, and there you are. Told you there was nothing bling-bling about him.

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Push, Nevada

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