Special note: Tom Magliozzi, one of public radio's most popular personalities, died on November 3, 2014, of complications from Alzheimer's disease. We will dearly miss him.
Don't worry if you're not into cars or the NPR show "Car Talk." Like many Car Talk episodes, this June 21, 2014 rebroadcast, "Wendy And The Boorish Bureaucrat," features terrific dating and relationship advice for women. If you ever need proof that men know the rules of dating—and that boorish behavior is not the result of cluelessness — just listen to the brothers, Tom and Ray Magliozzi, as they discuss this caller's boyfriend.
Here's the synopsis:
- A woman from Greenwich, CT calls in with a question about her car. In her introduction she mentions that each weekend she drives 5 hours each way to see her boyfriend in Washington, DC. (Red Flag #1: If the boyfriend loved her, he would drive the 5 hours to see her.)
- On her most recent visit, the caller's car smelled of burning rubber and started "billowing smoke" (her words). She told her boyfriend that she was concerned about the billowing smoke and she wasn't sure she should be driving 5 hours with the car in that condition. (Red Flag #2: The caller mentioned that her boyfriend was "crabby" and so she waited until Sunday to tell him about the car problem. Clearly, the boyfriend is not that into her, and her brain is temporarily scrambled by this non-relationship.)
- The boyfriend answers that it’s "ridiculous" to have the car fixed, because "it's probably nothing," and he sends her on her way to drive 5 hours with her car billowing smoke. She then has a harrowing drive home. (Red Flag #3: Her boyfriend is not at all concerned about her safety.)
The Car Talk brothers waste no time. They quickly dispatch with the car problem (air conditioning system) and move onto the real issue: the "bum" she's dating. Although the caller continues to insist that her boyfriend is "nice" here are the comments from Tom and Ray:
- "So are you looking for advice about your car or the bum you're dating?"
- "He had to get rid of you — he had his other girlfriend coming in the afternoon!"
- "We know the whole relationship is doomed to failure."
- "You gotta dump this guy."
- "Did he call to apologize or send flowers?" (Caller says no.)
- "It's unfortunate that you don't have good intuition about the bum you're dating."
- "Dump him! Just disappear. Don't call him. Just don't show up next weekend."
There you have it; straight-up relationship advice for women from a guy's perspective.
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