Designing Women S4 E2 - Julia's Date with a High School Stalker
Updated: Jan 29
This week, we get some big news that a dying man’s last wish is for a date with one of the Sugarbaker sisters. But, not the one you’d expect. Spoiler alert: she goes on the date and *gasp* ENJOYS IT! (Not sure we can say the same for us…)
In the background, Suzanne’s raising money for charity and learning thar’s gold in them hills, when she realizes rich people can live in Arkansas, too, and Charlene knows them!
Come back for “Extra Sugar” later this week when we finally talk all things Dixie Carter.
Forbes’ 1988 list of richest Americans v. the 1989 list.
Sam Walton’s obituary for more information on his life.
At the risk of being accused of self-promotion, we encourage you to listen to “Sweet Tea & TV” S2 E18 to learn more about Fred Smith, who we covered in “Extra Sugar” that week.
There’s also more info about Fred Smith in this Forbes web feature.
Win Rockefellar’s obituary speaks to both his wealth and his entrepreneurial spirit and a nice tribute from his son explains a bit more about the looming legacy of being a Rockefellar, but how Win did things a little differently.
A full list of famous Arkansans.
Come on, let’s get into it!
Or listen on Apple Podcasts | Spotify | Google Podcasts | Amazon Music.
[0:00:16] Salina: Hey, Nikki.
[0:00:16] Nikki: Hey, Salina.
[0:00:17] Salina: And hello, everyone. Welcome to Sweet Tea & TV.
[0:00:19] Nikki: Hey, y'all!
[0:00:20] Salina: And before we jump into today's episode, we have news.
[0:00:29] Nikki: I wish I had a sound effect for that.
[0:00:34] Nikki: That's the news. Maybe needs a little work.
[0:00:35] Salina: Yeah, that's pretty good. So we have a new Patreon. Yay, Alyssa. So everybody gets a shout out. I like to do a song.
[0:00:49] Nikki: You're lucky I didn't start singing your song just then and take it from you.
[0:00:54] Salina: Oh, yeah. I mean, it's good. It is so good. You're going to love this. So, Alyssa, thanks for joining us and for signing up. I guess I can't pretend like you're not my friend. This feels a little awkward, but here's your song.
[0:01:11] Nikki: This one goes out to Patreon. Alyssa.
[0:01:21] Salina: You are now a Patreon. That means you get this terrible song. Now you can listen to Sweet Tea and TV all day long.
[0:01:45] Nikki: All right. Did you like my harmonizing?
[0:01:46] Salina: That was nice. It was probably better than singing.
[0:01:50] Nikki: I think. I missed some notes right there in the middle. Sorry about that, Alyssa. It's love. An attempt was made. We tried.
[0:01:58] Salina: Well, so I just see Alyssa taking it back now.
[0:02:03] Nikki: Don't cancel. Stay with us. Episode two. We're ready.
[0:02:09] Salina: I got no transition there except for to say thank you. Welcome to the family. You are already here in the family, but now you're also paying for it. That's what my entire family feels like.
[0:02:22] Nikki: We have the raw audio of that song, Alyssa, if you'd like it. And or if there are any record executives out there listening who are interested in signing Salina, happy to share.
[0:02:36] Salina: I'm always here.
[0:02:38] Nikki: So we are to designing women Season Four episode Two called One Night With You The description from Hulu and IMDb and I think it's been lost to the sands of time - Did you merge these two together?
[0:02:50] Salina: I don't remember.
[0:02:51] Nikki: Okay. I think Salina merged these two together. A terminally ill classmate of Julia's has one dying wish to spend the night with her.
[0:03:07] Salina: I don't know if that's right.
[0:03:11] Nikki: I'm looking at my sound effect bank, and I'm like, let's just see what we got here just real quick. Actually, this is the one I thought of. So, the air date on this one was September 25, 1989. We're calling this one Julia's Date with a High School Stalker because I got to title it and I didn't feel good about this one. It was written by LBT. And it was directed by David Trainer. Let's get into general reactions and stray observations. What you got, Salina?
[0:03:46] Salina: Well, I didn't share any of these with you beforehand, but I did a mercy.
[0:03:50] Nikki: Oh, Lord.
[0:03:51] Salina: They're all questions.
[0:03:53] Nikki: Okay.
[0:03:54] Salina: They're all discussions I feel like we have to have.
[0:03:57] Nikki: Hit me with your best shot.
[0:03:58] Salina: Okay. So if this happened to you, like someone's dying wish was this been one night with you, would it flatter you, scare you or both.
[0:04:11] Nikki: So we are on the same mark with these two, with back to back episodes, because my first general reaction, I think, is an answer to your question, which is, this is so freaking awkward. And, like, some of the women were putting it off. Like, it's so romantic, and it was sweet. I'd be so freaked out.
[0:04:27] Salina: I would be so freaked out. Because they followed her to the rest.
[0:04:30] Nikki: Charlene did. And Charlene just went along with the rest of them, even though she thought it was super romantical. Charlene, I would be super freaked out. And I cannot decide if that makes me a horrible person or not. So what's your answer to that question? Make me feel better?
[0:04:46] Salina: Well, both. Yeah. I mean, more than fear, like, probably alarming amounts of discomfort, as someone who never really enjoyed attention and still doesn't, the fear part would be intensified or neutralized, depending on whatever energy that person kind of gave off. I think it would just depend.
[0:05:09] Nikki: Okay.
[0:05:09] Salina: He seemed mainly harmless, which would lead me into my second kind of question that I wanted to ask you. But before we go there, what other general reactions have you had?
[0:05:21] Nikki: I'm going to go back to something we talked about in episode one, which is dumping on Suzanne when she's trying to do something good. I think it's terrible that she was trying to raise money for literacy and continued to find herself the butt of the jokes in this episode, they were just like, I don't know, like, ragging on her for wanting to do this. Now she brought some of it on herself by being so rude to Charlene, but she's trying to do a good thing. I just don't like it.
[0:05:48] Salina: You have a very interesting read.
[0:05:50] Nikki: Sometimes it's all super forgiving of Suzanne. Is that what I hear you saying?
[0:05:56] Salina: Yes, but also, I feel like with Suzanne, at least the character I love Suzanne. Okay. I really do. I love sure doesn't seem like all.
[0:06:07] Nikki: Of our characters as you make fun of her like the rest of the characters.
[0:06:11] Salina: I apologize, but I think she kind of strikes me as one of those people that is it really about the literacy, or is it like, I'm a rich person and we do these charities.
[0:06:28] Nikki: Because can't both things be true?
[0:06:33] Salina: Absolutely can. But you're seeing it as Suzanne's story. I'm seeing it as Charlene's story.
[0:06:41] Nikki: That's what I see.
[0:06:44] Salina: It's her moment to have to come out on top.
[0:06:49] Nikki: She sure did. She sure did. That part where they were in the restaurant and Suzanne did something, and she was, it's fine, just don't do it again. That was just such a funny delivery from Charlene, of all people. I just don't let it happen again. The other general that I wanted to mention, does that strike you that they keep envisioning Anthony as the muscle? So, like, in this one, they wanted him nearby and dinner, just like, in case Julia needed him. And that like there's just been other episodes where they call Anthony in and you're like like construction worker. Yeah. Like, what is he going to do?
[0:07:23] Salina: Yeah, he's Anthony, and I think he's made that very clear. I think that's just patriarchy.
[0:07:28] Nikki: Patriarchy, man.
[0:07:31] Salina: So reactions to Don, I wanted to know what yours were.
[0:07:42] Nikki: Creepy.
[0:07:43] Salina: Really? Yeah. Well, I guess I feel a little of two minds on it, but I wanted to say, like, first, just like, on paper, he's a super normal looking guy, which isn't on paper, by the way.
[0:07:59] Nikki: What is if it's a picture of.
[0:08:00] Salina: It by appearance alone, he is. And they kept making him out like.
[0:08:06] Nikki: He was some kind of major nerd alert.
[0:08:09] Salina: It's kind of weird. I actually thought he was kind of nice looking in a little bit of like a nerdy way.
[0:08:14] Nikki: And Julia did too.
[0:08:15] Salina: Well, he reminds me of, like, an older Dan Levy type.
[0:08:21] Nikki: Oh, interesting.
[0:08:22] Salina: I thought they kind of look similar. He's also on the show. This is the paper part.
[0:08:27] Nikki: Here we go.
[0:08:28] Salina: He's an astronomer, so I would think he's probably a little successful. I'm not sure I buy that he was someone who was still alone. I mean, I know he's portrayed as, like, just holding this eternal candle for Julia, but I don't know, I felt that was kind of weird. I feel like astronomers must spend a.
[0:08:48] Nikki: Lot of time alone at night outside. I don't know, I kind of see that he was still alone. Yeah, I just thought he was he seemed very sweet and he seemed very earnest. I think any adult man who tells a charitable organization that his one wish before he dies is to go on a date with someone he hasn't seen in 40 years, who didn't know he existed, who had no idea he existed, is a strange choice.
[0:09:26] Salina: It's a choice off putting.
[0:09:29] Nikki: Yes.
[0:09:30] Salina: Was what creepy a little bit more intense for you, but for me, it was part of the way he talked, too, once they got in the restaurant. So especially like, all I ever saw was you. Like, if someone said that to me, I would be like, weird. If Casey said that to me, I would be like, shut up, liar.
[0:09:53] Nikki: I would love to hear Kyle say that, to be honest. I want to hear that I'm the only person he sees in the room, despite my not wonderful dressing and messed up hair and lack of makeup most days these days. I would like to hear him say that, but a guy I haven't seen in 40 years that's different than all.
[0:10:09] Salina: I ever saw was you. Like, I don't know, there's something about that that would like to hear you say that. This feels like a huge red wear flag. Well, I'll remember that this next week, maybe.
[0:10:18] Nikki: I thought you're just so damn beautiful. What a weird line.
[0:10:23] Salina: Well, so later they're slow dancing. Then he's reading her poetry.
[0:10:28] Nikki: It's just too much for me.
[0:10:29] Salina: I think. It's just like that kind of traditional romance. It's just not for me. I understand. Some people probably really enjoy it, but what do you think about him compared to Reese?
[0:10:43] Nikki: Well, that's a good question. That's a real question. I don't know. Yeah. Reese calls her, like what does he call her? Like Tomcat Wildcatter.
[0:10:54] Salina: What is it he calls her regularly?
[0:10:56] Nikki: Yeah. I don't know. Saucy?
[0:10:59] Salina: Spicy?
[0:11:00] Nikki: Simmering? Sassy? He calls her sassy?
[0:11:03] Salina: Is she a lady or a student?
[0:11:07] Nikki: He calls her sassy. I don't know.
[0:11:11] Salina: Yeah. So the other thing is, too, that this raised for me was like, is this cheating?
[0:11:17] Nikki: Yes. The whole thing was so I will say bluffed. When they said, she said, I told Reese. I told him who was dying. And Reese said, we're all dying. I thought that was really, really funny. Yeah, I thought it was total cheating. This reminded me, actually, of that scene between Julia and Wynn Dollarhyde in the play that we saw. I wonder if she was thinking about.
[0:11:41] Salina: That when she wrote this.
[0:11:42] Nikki: Not quite as heated, obviously, but it was definitely as romantic. Staring at this spot on my eye, like one ray of sunshine right in my right eye. I just feel like that's all you're looking at.
[0:11:56] Salina: Nikki looks like a villain from the future.
[0:12:00] Nikki: But that reminded me of that Hurn wind scene. So to me, yes, it's cheating. It was very intimate. Well, and they turned off the porch light at one point.
[0:12:09] Salina: Yeah, they're having an incredibly romantic night. They're being really flirty. There's a kiss. He's staying the night. It is made clear they won't have sex.
[0:12:20] Nikki: I'm sorry. Real quick, what about this made you wonder? Is it cheating? Where is yours? You help me understand your moral compass on this.
[0:12:28] Salina: I don't know if there's, like, a dying loophole, but it is incredibly intimate. I think it's the thing, but it is imparted to us is not cheap.
[0:12:40] Nikki: I don't think there's a dying loophole if your partner is not the one dying. If Kyle is not dying and I have to continue living with him, but this other person is, I still don't want them to have a romantic night together.
[0:12:54] Salina: So if Reese was dying, then Julia or Reese can go and have no.
[0:13:00] Nikki: I was thinking if Julia was dying, then maybe there's a little bit of a loophole there where she's like but me and Zac Efron, we really had this thing. It's the dying loophole. And the those two things have to coexist, in my opinion.
[0:13:16] Salina: Well, I was, like, just trying so the way that I finally came around, though, it doesn't work for me, is like putting Casey in the scenario of Julia. Like he's meeting up with some girl from high school.
[0:13:25] Nikki: 100% no.
[0:13:28] Salina: I'm like, yeah, that's probably pretty questionable. I don't know that I would need to take a beat on that one.
[0:13:37] Nikki: Jeez yeah, that's a hard pass for me. And I don't think it's just insecurity. I just think that's, like, that shouldn't happen.
[0:13:45] Salina: Yeah.
[0:13:46] Nikki: Strays most of my reactions are that did you catch a reference to Tom Ketcherside, the guy from the nudist colony?
[0:13:55] Salina: I don't think so.
[0:13:58] Nikki: In season three, there's the episode where the Sugar Bakers are called in to decorate a nudist colony. When Suzanne is reporting back in this episode, reporting back on the latest gossip from Trish weddington, she says Nelda Catcher Side's husband has become, quote, a complete homosexual. How many people have the last name Ketcherside?
[0:14:15] Salina: I don't know. Because what's that other name that she likes, too? It's not cypher stone or something.
[0:14:21] Nikki: Like Regina Fallange and I had the wrong show. That's a friend's reference.
[0:14:27] Salina: Oopsie Poopsy. I don't know.
[0:14:30] Nikki: But I actually labeled it as a possible reference to Tom catcher side.
[0:14:35] Salina: Yeah.
[0:14:36] Nikki: And then I have a cut line that I was going to mention. Suzanne was telling Charlene and Mary Joe that she thought they were tricking her. In that discussion, she makes a reference to the movie Gaslight. I'm only bringing that up because gaslight as a word was recognized by Miriam Webster's Dictionary as the word of the year in 2022 because of its significant rise in popularity. The word comes from the 1944 movie Suzanne's referencing, which was based on the 1930s British play. I stand by the old movies being like, super twisted. They are crazy, this movie. So the one we talked about in episode one this season was like sisters having fights and paralyzing one another having a baby. Jane exactly. Gaslighting. This movie is where a man tries to trick his wife into believing she's delusional and psychotic, basically, so he can rob her because she's wealthy. So one tactic he uses is having the gas powered lights in the hallway dim occasionally. And then he tells her it's not real and it's all her imagination. He's gaslighting her so that she thinks she's crazy. So I saw that cut line and I was like, you're going to have to talk about this gas lighting thing.
[0:15:44] Nikki: But I couldn't talk about it in references because it wasn't actually in the episode.
[0:15:48] Salina: Fair enough.
[0:15:49] Nikki: See, that was my last stray.
[0:15:51] Salina: So mine is when Donald is describing Julia in high school and running into class with her black Spanish shawl.
[0:16:01] Nikki: What? I had to look up a Spanish shawl. That sounds so ridiculous. She's, what, 16? She's wearing a shawl, of all people.
[0:16:11] Salina: That's what I said, though. So she probably was wearing a shawl, brooch and elbow length gloves.
[0:16:17] Nikki: Probably.
[0:16:18] Salina: She also drove an Aston Martin, which I just an old one, but I just thought that was a little reminder about her and Suzanne coming from a fair amount of money.
[0:16:28] Nikki: I drove an eagle Towon.
[0:16:32] Salina: I drove a Cavalier. If that doesn't scream money, okay. My last stray did Sugar Bakers look different to you?
[0:16:44] Nikki: You know what? It's funny you say that I would have to rewatch this particular episode, but in pre watching this season, there have been a couple of times it occurred to me. So I wonder if this was one of those times.
[0:16:54] Salina: So the kitchen and the bar area looked different to me.
[0:16:58] Nikki: Okay.
[0:16:58] Salina: Although I couldn't put my finger on it. So it's like, hard to say exactly what it was, but I don't know if maybe they moved some stuff around or maybe they took something away. But it almost felt bigger. And then when they were dancing at night, it didn't look like the same place to me at all. I think they came in, like, looking at it through the window or something, and I was like, where's this they.
[0:17:22] Nikki: Wanted you to have that feeling of where Voyeur is on this romantic, intimate night. So we're going to go in through the window.
[0:17:31] Salina: It was wonderful.
[0:17:32] Nikki: I understood the stage direction there.
[0:17:35] Salina: Got it.
[0:17:36] Nikki: It added to my creeper vibe.
[0:17:38] Salina: Well, so what else did you like? I was kidding. What did you like about this episode?
[0:17:44] Nikki: There's not a lot here for me. There's really not a lot. The whole episode was awkward to me, but there were a couple of really funny one liners or bits that I thought really made me laugh. Like, for instance, learning, obviously, all the influential rich people that Charlene knows, which.
[0:18:01] Salina: Never helped out with the business, by the way.
[0:18:05] Nikki: That's a good point. That's a good point.
[0:18:08] Salina: I didn't think about it until we started talking, to be fair. But there's been times where they're like, we're on the brink of bankruptcy.
[0:18:13] Nikki: And she's like, I could see Charlene not wanting to call those people for that, though. She felt like she was calling them for philanthropy. That's different. I also really loved when Suzanne got to hand that note over to Julia after getting, like, this whole lecture about how she should do this and then find out it's Julia, and she's like, oh, this can be. What did she say to the guy? He says, I'm so sorry for the mistake. And she's, no problem. It can be corrected. She hands the paper. That just must have been really gratifying. What about you? What did you like?
[0:18:48] Salina: I really loved the whole thing between her and Suzanne.
[0:18:51] Nikki: That was well done.
[0:18:52] Salina: Or Charlene and Suzanne. And I'm a sucker for a character subverting, some kind of stereotypical expectation. And so in this case, I think Suzanne has I mean, this has kind of been a season by season runner of Suzanne thinking. She thinks that Charlene is not as good as her. Right.
[0:19:16] Nikki: I mean, honestly.
[0:19:17] Salina: And so for her to be, like, coming in and kind of saving the.
[0:19:19] Nikki: Day, it was kind of cool. Yeah, that was good.
[0:19:22] Salina: I do agree that we kind of continue to see Suzanne become the butt of jokes. And I don't love that because I just really don't love anyone to become the butt of jokes. But if someone out of those group of women is going to be it really should be heard, Julia, because punching up, not punching down. I only like to punch up. And then you already talked about this. But I did really like the part where Suzanne comes in her line delivery, like relaying that story from being in the beauty salon or whatever with Julia's high school classmate. I just thought that the way that she talked about that, the way that she was, like, gossiping, it all seemed, like, really realistic, true to the character, and just the way that she said it was super funny. She also said she says Trisha is just a year behind you, but she's got a lot more lines through here. And she points at the laugh lines by her mouth. But I'll tell you right now, I'll give you $10 if you can tell me the technical name for the laugh lines.
[0:20:33] Nikki: You'll say it and I'll know it well.
[0:20:36] Salina: Yeah.
[0:20:37] Nikki: Are they like the eleven s or the tens?
[0:20:39] Salina: It's more technical than that. Oh, okay. Then?
[0:20:41] Nikki: No, I don't know.
[0:20:42] Salina: Okay.
[0:20:43] Nikki: These are eleven s okay. I look at these right here between your eyebrows.
[0:20:48] Salina: Man. Wrong. Full display. Oh, yeah, that's right. This is a podcast. They're called nasolabial fold.
[0:20:56] Nikki: I knew you'd love it.
[0:20:58] Salina: And we're going to put that on the list with moist crust and whatever else sounds terrible.
[0:21:05] Nikki: I have got to find out how I can work that into a meeting at work. I'm sorry. Hold on 1 second. I'm just going to rub my nasal labels. My nasalabials why does it sound so labels?
[0:21:25] Salina: Because it's a vaginal. But yes, it's like it being called the aerialas of your face.
[0:21:34] Nikki: Could you imagine going in and asking for Botox on your nasal labels and like the beauty spa lady even knowing what you're talking about, what they're like.
[0:21:43] Salina: Pull your pants down, because they do that, too.
[0:21:50] Nikki: All right.
[0:21:50] Salina: That's all I had. Oh, thank God.
[0:21:55] Nikki: I forgot that there were, like, a lot of really funny one liners. Another one that I really liked was Donald Trump. Couldn't even be Sam Walton's shoe shine boy was a highlight for me because for a lot of reasons, one of which I think is obvious. But also I just loved how it was sort of like this comparison of their finances. The other thing I really liked about it is that it leads me into a segment where I'm going to take over Salina's sidebar for a Nikki sidebar. Is that okay?
[0:22:25] Salina: I accept.
[0:22:29] Nikki: It's a sidebar - Nikki's sidebar - She got a keyboard looking for a reward. By diggin' deep, in the obscure. Whatcha got, Nikki? In Nikki's sidebar. It was a real joy to discover that one. I forgot about it.
[0:22:50] Salina: Can they hear you laughing all the way?
[0:22:52] Nikki: Yes, they can. Yeah. It's putting this one together. And you and I had been selena and I had been planning for this season, and she mentioned that I could take Salina's sidebar and make a Nikki's sidebar. I honestly had forgotten I had made this jingle at one point. And so something, like, rang in my head, and I was like, let me just double check all my sound files. And I found this one, and I listened to it, and I died laughing all over again. I don't know if it's actually funny or if it's just my sense of humor, but it makes me laugh. That's funny to me. Any whosies. That's what matters to me. So, in the beginning of the episode, we got this whole list of famous Arkansans. Okay, I looked it up. Okay, I was saying famous Arkansians, famous Arkansas people. I looked it up, and it sounds like there's, like, a little bit of debate, but our Arkansans is where we land most of the time.
[0:23:43] Salina: I can see that.
[0:23:44] Nikki: Okay, t'were it that we have any listeners from Arkansas who know the answer and want to change my mind, let me know, because that's what I'm going with. So I'm gonna go through the list of people she mentions, and I'm gonna share a little bit about them. I also specifically looked up their net worth, if I could, in 1989, when this episode aired, but in some instances, I think that wasn't possible. So I'll do the best I can. I'm doing the best I can. So, Mr. Sam refers to Sam Walton. Mr. Walton lived from 1918 to 1992. He was the founder of a little store called Walmart. Well done. Did you know that was interactive?
[0:24:26] Salina: No.
[0:24:27] Nikki: And also, there's two Sam's club. Oh, the club. Oh, Sam.
[0:24:33] Salina: Okay.
[0:24:34] Nikki: He was actually born in Oklahoma, but for a time, he lived in Missouri. And ultimately, after college and serving military time, he settled in Newport, Arkansas. When he got there, he used his military savings to buy a Ben Franklin variety store. It sounds like an old fashioned version of walmart. They had, like, a little bit of everything. Turns out he was really successful there, which super threatened his landlord, and he refused to renew his lease, so he had to go find a new location so, he found a new location in downtown Bentonville, Arkansas, which is today the headquarters of Walmart, I believe. Not in my notes, but I think I know that I trust you. He had to negotiate for that spot. Like seven times he tried to get this spot, and there was this little anecdote about, like, his father in law went in and did one last ditch effort and actually, like, one over the landlord. So he got this space where he opened another Ben Franklin's franchise. And then that was let me see. Oh, I didn't write down the year. By 1962 is when he opened the first walmart. So he ran these Ben Franklin franchises for a little while and opened Walmart in 1962 in Rogers, Arkansas. So this episode says that Sam was Forbes's richest man in America in 1988 with an estimated net worth of 6000 700 million.
[0:25:56] Nikki: There's so many commas, I can't read it. In 1989, when this episode actually aired, he had fallen to number 20. His net worth at that time was 1000, 800 million. For what it's worth, I don't think Walmart actually lost value during this time. Actually, I think it gained value during this time. I think he just shifted the reins as he got a little bit older. So his net worth shifted along with it. Does that make sense?
[0:26:21] Salina: Yeah, well, he wasn't that long for the world.
[0:26:25] Nikki: Okay. The episode says, and I'm not sure I was super clear about this the episode says he's, like the richest man in America. He was in 1988. He was not by 1989 when this episode aired. Does that make sense? Second guy. Second person they mentioned was Fred Smith. Longtime listeners may remember we've talked about him before he was the founder of FedEx. And that whole ragstorriches story we talked about in season two, Episode 18. The Cliff's Note version is that with just $5,000 left to his name, he pit stopped in Vegas, put the money down on a game of blackjack and walked away with $27,000, which he put back into the business and got them back on the right track. He was born in Marks, Mississippi, into a business oriented family. His dad was the founder of the Toddle House restaurant chain. Do you remember tottlehouse?
[0:27:13] Salina: I've never heard of that before.
[0:27:15] Nikki: It was around until about 1988.
[0:27:18] Salina: Fun fact, before my time, the founder.
[0:27:22] Nikki: Of Waffle House, Joe Rogers, was a regional manager of Toddle House before he founded Waffle House. Like, Toddle and it's like a bread. It sounds like Waffle House. Honestly. His father had bought out the Toddle House chain when he was looking for a new investment because the Smith Motor Coach Company, which he started, was bought out by Greyhound. So Fred Smith's dad was pretty successful. Unfortunately, his dad died when he was four, leaving his mother and his uncles to raise them. So he grew up more or less in Memphis, Tennessee, and then attended Yale University. While he was there, he actually pitched the idea for FedEx in an econ class, but his teacher didn't think it was feasible, so he gave him a C. Two more fun facts. I loved this. It has nothing to do with his net worth. He was a member of the Skull and Bone secret society. Do you remember that movie? The Skulls?
[0:28:11] Salina: Of course.
[0:28:12] Nikki: That was a good one. He was also a friend and fraternity brother of George W. Bush. So after college, Fred joined the Marines. He served.
[0:28:20] Salina: I don't know why I said it like that. Like, I know I'm like I remember when they were besties.
[0:28:27] Nikki: After college, he joined the Marines he served two stunts in Vietnam before he was honorably discharged. He earned a silver star, a bronze Star, and two purple Hearts for his service. Those are all really big deals if people don't know. He founded FedEx in 1971 using his $4 million inheritance. Wikipedia notes that would be about 23 million in $2,013.
[0:28:50] Salina: Not exactly a rack stretches store, right?
[0:28:53] Nikki: I think $4 million is probably more money than I'll ever have in my life, but it doesn't feel like that much to me when I think of people who went on to be like most rich people in America, 23 million feels like a lot more.
[0:29:06] Salina: Yeah, 23 feels significant.
[0:29:08] Nikki: So after the Vegas incident, more or less, he continued building his wealth. He really only very recently, in 2022, stepped down as CEO and chairman of FedEx. He opted instead for the title of executive chairman. Today he's worth about $4.1 billion. Two things stuck out to me while reading about him. He doesn't actually appear on either the 1988 or the 1989 Forbes wealthiest Americans list. Also, the tie to Arkansas is like really skimpy and it was really old even for when this episode aired. So he originally founded FedEx in Arkansas in 1971, but had moved operations to Memphis within just like a couple of years because of lack of support from the airport in Little Rock.
[0:29:52] Salina: Do you think it's because I grew up in a small town and if someone famous like Walk breeze through, they were probably going to put a plaque up? They're like, oh, this person came through and they touched this wall, so here's a plaque. Now maybe that because of that tie to a place like Arkansas. That is like it's middle America. There's a lot of rural areas. I'm not saying it's all rural. And I know there's some really cool places in Arkansas, too. So I'm not trying to poo poo on Arkansas. I'm just saying when you are from a small place and you're not hustling and bustling and having famous people walk through every day, any tie feels extra special, just like it did for my small town, if that makes sense. That's why she continues to kind of go back to that or the husband. Harry Thomas says that's really his husband. That man.
[0:30:50] Nikki: Yeah, that could be true. Next up was Wynn Rockefeller, the son of Winthrop. This one is definitely more on the nose in terms of an Arkansas tie than Fred was. So Wynn, as noted in the episode, is the son of Winthrop Rockefeller. He was the 17th lieutenant governor of Arkansas from 1996 to his death in 2006. His father before him was the governor of Arkansas. His mother was an actress. He was born in New York City, then educated in the US. And in Switzerland. He went to Texas Christian University where he majored in ranch management as a Rockefeller does.
[0:31:32] Salina: Well, see, and for me, I don't think it blew my mind. Because obviously he's like, what, the great great grandson of the Rockefeller? And I don't picture them in Arkansas, I picture them in New York.
[0:31:49] Nikki: I'll get into some of this here in a second. There is a whole thing about the Arkansas Rockefellers and how they spent their entire life trying to lead a life of philanthropy and public service, almost in a way to make up for having been so wealthy from being an oil tycoon, in a sense. So back to win. When Charlene knew him, he would have been on the Arkansas State Policy Commission, a role in which he served from 1981 to 1985. He started his political career in 1991, eventually rising to lieutenant governor in 1994. Of note, he served under Mike Huckabee for many years. I think Mike says a name you hear a lot when you're talking about politics. His Wikipedia says he was a big proponent of the economic interests of Arkansas and that he often sought out potential foreign investors traveling on his own dime and also donating his government salary to the charity or to charity. Obviously. That's pretty cool. He also put his college degree to work as a rancher, which is actually where he made his income. And I guess partly what made it possible for him to donate his government salary was that he had this other.
[0:33:00] Salina: It was very strange compared to his net worth.
[0:33:03] Nikki: Yes, that's accurate. He was married twice. He had a total of seven kids. I think if I did all my math right, he and his second wife started the Academy at Riverdale in Little Rock, a school for children with learning disabilities. Winthrop was on that 1988 Forbes list with a wealth of $800 million and 850,000,000 in 1989. At his death in 2006, he was number 286 with a wealth of 1.2 billion branches.
[0:33:37] Salina: How is that so low on the list?
[0:33:39] Nikki: That's wild, right? That's wild, right?
[0:33:43] Salina: People have some people not the people right here necessarily, but some people have just like, a mind boggling amount of money.
[0:33:51] Nikki: It's wild. So one thing that stuck out to me, which I sort of alluded to a second ago, was that he's not what I would have expected of a billionaire. And I think it's really realistic. He and Charlene were charlene, a real person would really have hit it off and that he would have donated to Suzanne's really small charitable effort. He tried really hard to use his fortune to make the world better. I'm going to link to an article I found about his son, and his son shares a few anecdotes. So his son is like 40, ish now, and has inherited his dad's money and his business and all those things. And so he was being profiled about a cancer research wing at hospitals of rich people, things that they were dedicating in his dad's name because his dad died of cancer, like, sadly and shockingly, in 2006. It sounds like it really did. But his son told a couple little anecdotes about growing up in the family and basically, like for the longest time until his friends told him he didn't know they were wealthy, his parents had a one pair limit and a $50 cap on Nike shoes that he could buy. So they would say, you can have $50 and you can buy one pair and that's it. So a kid with a dad with a billion dollars probably could have afforded more, but I think his parents wanted to keep him grounded. That's nice. It's really nice. The article.
[0:35:10] Nikki: You should look at it because it was really interesting how it talks about going because you're interested in things like this, going back to how did they end up in Arkansas? Why did they end up in Arkansas? It's fascinating. Cool. And so last but definitely not least was Bill Clinton. I feel like he really both needs no introduction and also a segment all his own. Bill is definitely the most famous person on this list, but he appears nowhere on the Forbes wealthiest people list. Just spoiler alert. A quick Google search tells me his wealth is estimated about $80 million. Poor guy. He's awful. It's really terrible.
[0:35:47] Salina: How does it feel to be in the poor house?
[0:35:49] Nikki: It's got to be tough. So I'm sure we're going to come back to Bill at some point in more detail. I know we've talked about him before when we talked about the Thomasins I'll share at this time in his life where Designing Women aired, he was the governor of Arkansas. We know he was a friend of the Thomasins, and he was gearing up for a presidential run and educational reform was his platform. So all of that checks out with the episode. And so just for kicks and giggles, I'm also going to include a link to other famous Arkansas, which include actor Mary Steenbergen, author Maya Angelou, and legendary college football coach Bear Bryant.
[0:36:29] Salina: All right.
[0:36:31] Nikki: Things we didn't like in this episode. I think I've been clear about mine.
[0:36:35] Salina: The episode.
[0:36:36] Nikki: Yes. Correct.
[0:36:40] Salina: I think the set up at the beginning dragged on a little too long.
[0:36:43] Nikki: Like, we could be making fun of Suzanne.
[0:36:46] Salina: Yeah. But just like we were with the make a wish guy, like half the.
[0:36:53] Nikki: Episodes, that could have been a phone call.
[0:36:54] Salina: Yeah.
[0:36:55] Nikki: We could have just couldn't this have been an email?
[0:36:57] Salina: I mean, you honestly we honestly could have come in and Julia could have been talking about the fact that she's going on this date because blah, blah.
[0:37:05] Nikki: But we wouldn't have gotten that gratifying Suzanne moment.
[0:37:07] Salina: That's true, and I like that. But as someone who doesn't write TV.
[0:37:14] Nikki: I would do it so differently.
[0:37:16] Salina: I think we could have gotten there faster. But I do agree that that was a gratifying moment and it was a cute twist. But the reason I would have tightened that up is because it would have given us more space to do something I think could have been really interesting, and that's more space with the rest of the ladies in Anthony as they're.
[0:37:37] Nikki: What would you call it?
[0:37:39] Salina: Chaperoning the date from a nice distance. I think we could have had more fun with that. It almost felt like maybe some things got cut from that area, too, but I think I would have rather have had more of that, less of the upfront space, certainly less of the poetry reading. But that's pretty much it for me. I mean, I think it was an.
[0:38:01] Nikki: Okay episode, which good for you, gets.
[0:38:04] Salina: Us right into the rating.
[0:38:06] Nikki: Go right there.
[0:38:08] Salina: How would you like to rate this one, Nicki? A five. You want to go higher than a five?
[0:38:12] Nikki: Can we so my rating scale is corny pickup lines. I'm giving this one a two out of five, and I will choose to never watch it again.
[0:38:21] Salina: She didn't like it.
[0:38:24] Nikki: Mama did not.
[0:38:25] Salina: We don't get to watch things just one time around here. Did you just get to watch it once?
[0:38:29] Nikki: No, I had to watch it twice. But I made the most of that second viewing.
[0:38:34] Salina: I gave it a 3.8 out of five.
[0:38:37] Nikki: Good lord. Didn't you give the last episode a three? Yeah. Selena. Oh, sorry. What was your rating scale? I interrupted you.
[0:38:45] Salina: 3.8 out of five. Nasalavial fold.
[0:38:52] Nikki: I'm so glad we got to come back to that.
[0:38:56] Salina: I don't know. I think Julia's plot, I think it had a lot of heart, even though I get it. And yes, it is like a little whatever. But also, it is really kind to do something for someone that even if it does, because I don't think she wanted to do it. I think maybe she did. By the time she was there, I think she wanted to spend more time with him. But I do think that some of that was out of graciousness and just a read on the situation, no matter how weird it was. Who cares? He's dying. If that's what he wants, just give it to him. I know it would have been different if he was like and sleep with me.
[0:39:40] Nikki: What if he also didn't die? What if he hung on for another two decades?
[0:39:45] Salina: Really awkward meeting at the grocery store. I don't know. I think you're just building up good karma, I guess. But I thought the rest of the cast brought some much needed humor because it is kind of a serious episode. It sort of put it in the tone of like the Elvis episode where she was with the truck driver.
[0:40:04] Nikki: Oh, yeah.
[0:40:06] Salina: Julia just everybody falls in love with her.
[0:40:08] Nikki: I was going to say she automatically happens.
[0:40:12] Salina: So for me, that's why I thought those things made it a little bit above average for me.
[0:40:17] Nikki: Fair enough.
[0:40:18] Salina: But also, I did not score any higher than that because I've seen what this show can do when it's firing on all cylinders. And this one wasn't quite at that level. 80s things.
[0:40:33] Nikki: I only have between 80s things, southern things and references we need to talk about. I only have this one, which is Jennifer Jones and Veronica from the Archie comics. So that's how he describes Julia. So Jennifer was an American actress born in 1919. She died in 1990. She was nominated for an Oscar five times over her 50 year career. A Farewell to Arms was the only movie in her filmography that I recognized. I didn't know any of the other ones. Worth noting, she was a passionate mental health advocate, having attempted to kill herself once and having lost a daughter to suicide. And also worth noting, Dixie Carter does kind of look like her. Veronica is a brunette character who's in the Archie comics. I could kind of see a resemblance. I'm sure there was something in, like, the way she carried herself or something that I don't get from not having seen them. She's sassy. Yeah.
[0:41:22] Salina: Yeah, I think so. I I wonder jennifer Jones must be like a favorite of LBTS or something because I feel like she's come up before, but we haven't talked about her. I think it's like she's been in the litany kind of list before where I'm like, no, it's one too many. We just named 18,000 movie stars. But there's also a joke at some point about Suzanne and the Farewell to Arms or something.
[0:41:47] Nikki: I feel like in this episode no.
[0:41:50] Salina: Sometime over the course of the show. So it makes me wonder, like, if she's a big fan or something.
[0:41:55] Nikki: Maybe.
[0:41:57] Salina: So. 80s things. I had old school sonogram pictures because Charlene comes in with her sonogram, just the very idea of it's not make a wish. They're calling it make a Dream Come True because him coming in person to find Julia, that whole thing would never happen today. That would be an email. That would be a phone call. So Suzanne's car phone, that was a nice little 80s run.
[0:42:32] Nikki: Oh, you're right.
[0:42:34] Salina: You went through all the Southern things. So if you guys didn't pick up on those and you'll Nicky's sidebar, you're.
[0:42:41] Nikki: Not listening in the sidebar. I was like, when did I talk about where am I?
[0:42:49] Salina: He and Julia are going to the most expensive restaurant in Atlanta.
[0:42:53] Nikki: He being holding.
[0:42:55] Salina: And so I got curious, like, what would that have been then and what would it be now? And so I did a little digging. It was really annoying. Sometimes they do these outside shots and I guess they're setting them up where you really can't see. I was like, does it say the Immaculate Twill club? I was like, trying to find all these things, and I couldn't find that. But I did wind up asking my mom, like, what she thought some contenders could have been. And she mentioned the mansion that closed in 2000 in Atlanta after a fire. It's subsequently bought by SCAD, and it's known as the Edward C. Peters House or Ivy Hall. If you look it up, you'll know what it is. Okay. Anthony's Fine dining. This closed in 2011. I think it was only catering towards the end, but that was like a prom spot, like in my mom's day.
[0:43:45] Salina: And then there was the Abbey. I wish this one was still open because I just think the whole concept is really cool. But it was a real Abbey that they turned into the restaurant. Back in, the waiters wore robes like priest ribs. So people were like, this is the.
[0:44:09] Nikki: 60S - super sacrilegious in Atlanta.
[0:44:11] Salina: They were not happy. And I found, like, a 1962 news segment about it where the guy trying to defend himself about, man, we're just having fun.
[0:44:21] Nikki: Religion is not fun.
[0:44:23] Salina: You tell them. But anyways, this was a little harder for me to pinpoint, like, when the Abbey went away. But I think it's been close for maybe 17 years or so now, and I think it's actually back to being a real Abbey again.
[0:44:42] Nikki: What is the most expensive restaurant you've been to in Atlanta?
[0:44:47] Salina: They're all expensive now, I feel like. I think I would have to give that some thought.
[0:44:54] Nikki: Okay, I'm thinking of two very expensive so Fogo de Chao is really expensive. We've only done that, like, one time. That's a Brazilian steakhouse. It's in buckhead - bones is right across the street. Like American steakhouse. Very expensive, incidentally. Like the best steak I've ever had in a restaurant. But have I ever told you my Pricci story no, tell me now. Pricci is where we went for our prom my senior year.
[0:45:22] Salina: I'm thinking P-R-E-A-C-H-Y not Pricci.
[0:45:27] Nikki: Yeah, I think it's an Italian restaurant.
[0:45:29] Salina: You're right. Southern.
[0:45:31] Nikki: It's so expensive. Or at least in my 16 year old mind it was. So then fast forward a couple of years later, I'm working for this company, and they take us there for a Christmas party. And it's me and Kyle. I convinced him to go with me. This might have even been before we were married. I think it had to have been. So we went to this christmas is a very small, intimate Christmas party, and they are trying to get me to buy drinks. They are trying to get me to get an appetizer for dinner. And Kyle and I were so broke that we were like, no, we're fine. This is like my first fancy dinner ever out for work. And it never occurred to me that they would pay for dinner, and they never said they would. So for the entire dinner at this fancy Italian restaurant, kyle and I had water. We shared a salad, and I think we shared an entree. And we were just like, oh, we're just not hungry.
[0:46:21] Nikki: We're going out later, or whatever. And they brought the check around and they were like, we would love to honor you guys for such a great year at work. And so they paid for it, and Kyle and I only got salad and an entree to share. And I couldn't even tell you now. I mean, that was probably 2009, maybe. I couldn't even tell you how much Pricci costs. I just know it felt really expensive from my prom experience and my working experience.
[0:46:49] Salina: Yeah, there's been a couple, but this was also something that was like a work event, and so I had to pay for it. But like, Chops, which is an Atlanta.
[0:47:01] Nikki: Staple.
[0:47:04] Salina: We went to Baconalia last year, and we did, like, a tasting there. And that place was very delicious, as they all are a little bit more pricey than McDonald's. No, two for ones.
[0:47:22] Nikki: I feel like Kyle would have, like, three other examples of really expensive meals we've had. I feel like there are more restaurants we've been to that I just am like, what?
[0:47:31] Salina: But I just feel like everything is, like, right now expensive right now, so it's a little difficult. And then I feel like depending on I think some people like what they consider expensive, other people don't. So once you're at, like, $30 from an entree, I'm like, yeah, right.
[0:47:49] Nikki: Well, that's why I was curious, because that, to me, also same. That's expensive. Like, an expensive dinner for me and Kyle is like $120, maybe $150. But I know that you were kind of enmeshed in the Atlanta restaurant industry, so I just imagine that you probably had a couple of run ins, at least experientially, with restaurants that were way more expensive than that, because I respect that. That's not even true.
[0:48:16] Salina: It's like a crappy downtown convention, like, got you. It's really hard to get around Atlanta.
[0:48:25] Nikki: Now you're stuck here.
[0:48:29] Salina: Which is incidentally, closed, but also across from some pretty expensive places in Atlanta. But we weren't one of them, although we were priced higher. Because one of the reasons why some of those restaurants are so expensive, it's not just the quality of the food, it's the place where they're located.
[0:48:46] Nikki: Right.
[0:48:46] Salina: And the fact that rent is just like I mean, when you hear some of these prices, sometimes you're like, I don't even know how you like, how do you sell enough food to make that work?
[0:48:55] Nikki: Yeah, that's true. So that's kind of crazy.
[0:48:57] Salina: So restaurants, guys, stay tuned for our restaurant podcast.
[0:49:01] Nikki: I'm like, I would love to have it.
[0:49:03] Salina: I would love to have it. So I did not realize in my silliness that you were going to cover Win Rockefellers. So that was my references to talk about. That's why I was like, oh, yeah, like, I actually knew things about him.
[0:49:16] Nikki: This is a well oiled machine.
[0:49:18] Salina: This thing is we are well, what it means now is saving time. That's true. Do you have any references that you had on your list? No, because you already told me that. And that's why we're a well oiled machine. I also have food on my shirt, incidentally.
[0:49:34] Nikki: You done?
[0:49:36] Salina: Am I ever.
[0:49:39] Nikki: So, next up, season four, episode three. There she is. We'd love everyone to follow along with us and engage instagram and Facebook @sweetteaandtv. Email SweetTeaTVPod@gmail.com. You're licking your shirt, Salina www.sweettv.com there are also several ways to support the show. Please tell your friends and family about us. Please leave us a rating or a review wherever you listen. You can also visit the support us page on our website for additional ways to support the show. And come back later this week for extra sugar. What do you cover in Salina?
[0:50:16] Salina: Well, we're finally going to do a proper deep dive on the one, the only, ms. Dixie Carter. Just so you know, what was on my shirt was delicious. .
[0:50:26] Nikki: Thanks for reporting back.
[0:50:31] Salina: Welcome. And you know what that means.
[0:50:34] Nikki: Nikki what does it mean, Salina?
[0:50:35] Salina: Means we'll see you around the bend.