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Designing Women S4 E26 - At the Finish Line & Going up in Flames

Updated: Jul 28, 2023

Graduating is stressful, y’all. There are the last-minute exams, family coming into town, your half-cocked boss accidentally shooting you in the leg whilst trying to cheat at a Jeopardy board game…the list goes on and on and on. But if anyone can make it make sense, it’s our Anthony. And if anyone can help us “best the stress” – it’s Nikki. She’ll sidebar us with some much-needed tips

Come back on Thursday for an all-new Extra Sugar where we’ll talk about some lesser-known, influential historical figures in Black history.

Here are some of the references we used for this week’s episode, if you want more!

Come on y’all, let’s get into it!



Salina: Hey, Nikki.

Nikki: Hey, Salina.

Salina: And hello, everyone, and welcome to Sweet Tea and TV.

Salina: Hey, y'all.

Salina: I realized something.

Nikki: Okay.

Nikki: Is it going to be like a milestone date I've forgotten or something?

Salina: No, I just realized we didn't actually loop back after our Southern trivia to talk about brunch.

Nikki: We didn't.

Nikki: That's true.

Salina: So I thought we should say, like, we lived up I shouldn't say we that you lived up to it.

Salina: You took me out to Brunch and I want to say thank you, like.

Nikki: In a very public forum.

Nikki: This is the first time she said thank you.

Salina: How strange that day I just got up and I was like, see?

Salina: You suck up.

Salina: No thank you, no nothing.

Salina: Just like, and next time, make it faster.

Nikki: I did feel on the note of fast record time that we pulled that sucker together.

Salina: It happened very quickly.

Nikki: It was the week after we recorded.

Nikki: Two weeks after we recorded something.

Nikki: Like very quickly after we recorded, I made it happen.

Nikki: Because you know what?

Nikki: When I commit to something, I see it through.

Salina: You sure do.

Salina: It's true.

Nikki: I told you, order whatever you want.

Nikki: It's on me.

Nikki: Because I want you to feel a little bit guilty at the end.

Nikki: Then you'll think twice before you try.

Salina: To beat me again, as you know.

Salina: Well, I don't try to beat anyone in a game.

Salina: In fact, one might say that I am the best at losing, which is winning in a way.

Salina: So we went to place up here where we live.

Salina: Cool.

Salina: In a Dekula.

Salina: So it's north of Atlanta.

Salina: Way north of Atlanta.

Nikki: It's far even from us.

Salina: Yeah.

Salina: Cute name.

Salina: Brunch Apothecary.

Salina: We've actually posted in stories from this place before because I tried it for the first time towards the end of last year, and it's in a really cute old house that's a little bit of a stick out because it's like right in front of a public, but I bet you what do you think?

Salina: It's like 8100 years old maybe?

Nikki: Yeah, for sure.

Nikki: Like 1920s, it seemed like.

Salina: Yeah, it's got some sort of fill to it.

Salina: Like the fireplace from that the fireplaces from that era have a certain way.

Salina: Like the molding around the doorways just looks different.

Salina: It just looks like that.

Nikki: It looks like a small farmhouse.

Salina: Yeah, it's got the cute wraparound porch and it's really cute.

Salina: It looks like I actually was thinking about how it kind of looks like Uncle Gertrude's on the like your grandma's house.

Salina: Like your quintessential grandma's house, which is what I think it's supposed to happen, but like, cool.

Salina: Like your grandma.

Salina: But she's a happening lady, so my grandma?

Salina: Yeah, all of our grandmas.

Salina: Everyone's grandmas are happening ladies.

Nikki: Yeah.

Nikki: It's definitely supposed to evoke some kind of, like, nostalgia coupled with you feel like you're in kind of a fresh take on the nostalgia.

Nikki: It's not dusty.

Nikki: It's not like good rusty or broken down.

Nikki: It's modern, but it's supposed to feel.

Salina: Old, which is good because you don't really want all that dust in your sticky bun.

Nikki: I do not love it.

Nikki: I'm not a fan.

Nikki: I did love the sticky bun.

Salina: Yeah.

Salina: So we just go ahead and walk you guys through it because you need to know.

Salina: And the sticky bun, for me, I think was my favorite.

Nikki: Yeah, it was very sticky.

Nikki: It was almost like I told Celine, it was almost like a praline on top of a cinnamon roll.

Salina: That's right.

Salina: Very bunnish, if you will.

Nikki: Very bunnish.

Salina: This is why I'll never get that job as a food cricket.

Salina: But it tasted like I think I mentioned this while we were eating it, but it tasted a little bit like they had taken the kind of biscuit dough or something and turned that into a sticky bun.

Salina: But it was the size of our face.

Salina: It was very large, which made me very excited.

Salina: Yeah, we were so good and finished the whole thing.

Nikki: Well, when I commit to a thing, you know, the worst part is my sense of taste was really off that day because I was so congested.

Nikki: I had, like, a weird allergy sinus thing that popped up at the end of that week.

Nikki: So when Salina and I got together, it was very nasally, and I don't actually know that I got to really, really taste it.

Salina: You need to go back, which is.

Nikki: A real shame, because yeah, now I'm going to have to go back or.

Salina: Take the kids back.

Nikki: Sticky bun.

Nikki: Yeah.

Salina: But bear in mind, I don't think they have that every day.

Nikki: Yeah, it's like a special that was a special that day.

Salina: Yeah.

Salina: And so if you find yourselves up in Tequila, as many of us know, you bear that in mind, too.

Nikki: Check their Facebook page.

Nikki: Salina told me that's where they have the specials.

Salina: And we got another special that was one of the I had to look it up because I was like, I kind of know what this is.

Salina: But not entirely.

Salina: But we got Southern chicken and waffle.

Nikki: Oh, that's right.

Salina: So it was a cornbread waffle topped with fried chicken chow chow pickle relish, which I thought it was coleslaw.

Nikki: Cool.

Salina: And then also a white barbecue sauce, which I don't remember that.

Salina: So I don't know if I looked at the wrong day or if we got the barbecue sauce.

Salina: I don't think we did.

Salina: I'm not sure.

Salina: But you know how we said this needs one more element?

Nikki: It would have been the barbecue.

Salina: That would have been the element.

Nikki: Oh, you're so right.

Salina: Yeah.

Salina: It just needed one more thing.

Salina: The other thing I would have done.

Salina: Anyways, I want to say that this was really delicious, but I love a pecan waffle.

Salina: That's all I'm saying.

Salina: So I probably would have thrown some pecan and cheese in there because I'm like, why just do one thing when you can do eight things, which is why I don't cook because I always do too much.

Salina: So I'm going to leave it to the professionals.

Salina: But a cheesy pecan waffle is really good.

Salina: Just saying.

Salina: We also had a southern monte cristo.

Salina: I thought the pimento cheese on there was really good.

Salina: So it's a house pimento cheese and ham.

Salina: And it had red pepper jelly on there, which I will say it might have been a little hard to tease apart from the pimento cheese.

Salina: But it makes perfect sense because pimento with the cheese and then it was also served with they weren't home fries.

Salina: They were just like a really nice fried potato situation.

Nikki: Almost like those thick steakhouse.

Nikki: Almost like steakhouse fries.

Salina: Right.

Nikki: Oh, god, I love a fry.

Nikki: I told you I had to tell you to eat one.

Salina: Yeah.

Nikki: I had to tell you to do.

Salina: Potatoes to the side because I want any other carb usually more than a potato.

Nikki: I get that.

Nikki: I had to at least know what it tasted like and it was very good.

Nikki: Yeah.

Salina: So just thank you.

Salina: You're welcome.

Nikki: You forgot about the cheesy grits.

Salina: Oh, and the cheesy grits.

Nikki: Yeah.

Nikki: They needed a little more seasoning.

Nikki: I think maybe it was the chow chow on top of the southern.

Salina: Biscuit.

Nikki: Waffle or chicken and waffle situation.

Nikki: Maybe it was the chow chow was the strongest flavor I tasted that day.

Nikki: And I am so turned off by chow chow.

Nikki: I cannot explain to you how much the thought of chow chow grosses me out.

Nikki: I could tell you why, but it's pretty gross.

Salina: Oh, then don't tell me.

Nikki: But the thought of chow chow is very disgusting to me.

Nikki: But that was very good.

Salina: Well, it was slaw because chow chow is fine, but it looked like slaw.

Nikki: Now I feel ripped off.

Nikki: We didn't get the barbecue sauce because I think you're right.

Salina: But what we're saying is sticky buns.

Salina: But anyway, so thank you.

Salina: It was delicious and it was a good time.

Salina: We just got to go out and have fun.

Salina: And then Nikki came back over and we just sat on my back patio.

Nikki: And had very long time.

Salina: I enjoyed it.

Salina: It was great.

Salina: That was fun.

Nikki: It was lovely.

Salina: But you know what, I really just to say I really appreciate it is like I think you and I are both the kind of people who always feel like we have to be on a schedule.

Salina: And the fact that both of us were willing to sit there and just chill out for a minute was the highlight of my week.

Salina: It was really nice because I'm always like, no, I got to get to the next thing.

Salina: But when you were like, yeah, I'll come and have a cup of coffee, I was like, okay, well, I'm going to lean into this.

Salina: Let's do it.

Salina: Let's do that.

Salina: But I spook very sound fun.

Nikki: I know you do.

Salina: That's why I didn't offer you a.

Nikki: Drink for a really long time.

Salina: I was like the second I offered a refresher drink, she will be out the store and you know what happened?

Nikki: You were do you want some water or something?

Nikki: I think I'll just go home and drink water.

Salina: I don't know what that's drinking.

Nikki: I don't know what that's about.

Nikki: I don't know.

Nikki: But you're welcome.

Nikki: It's very fun.

Nikki: Thank you for making us have steaks that were so delicious.

Salina: I mean, there's nothing like a delicious steak.

Salina: Which really ruined my transition because what I was going to say, all good.

Nikki: Things come to an end.

Salina: And for Anthony, what came to an end for him this week in Designing Women was school.

Nikki: Because he's graduating, I would have gotten the answer right.

Salina: Terrible transition.

Salina: But here we are.

Nikki: Here we are.

Nikki: Anyway, it's Anthony's graduation.

Nikki: So IMDb's description is anthony overcomes a visit by family members, writer's block hysteria, and getting shot in the leg in time to make it to his college graduation.

Nikki: That is such a great summary.

Nikki: Thank you.

Nikki: That's a really good summary.

Salina: Yeah.

Nikki: From well, maybe it helps explain I mean, I've read the summary before, but I don't spend a lot of time reading them because I already know what happened in the episode.

Nikki: But maybe it's going to be relevant to one of my general reactions.

Nikki: No, one of my reactions to this episode.

Nikki: I think it's the thing I didn't like, actually.

Nikki: Anyway.

Nikki: Air date May 14, 1990 very close to your birthday.

Salina: Very close.

Nikki: We're calling this one at the finish line and going up in flames, which is how poor Anthony was feeling.

Nikki: It's written by LBT and directed by David Trainor So on the general reaction front, Salina, what you got?

Salina: So I love that we have an episode where what's happening in Anthony's life is driving the know he's graduating.

Salina: This feels like the culmination of everything he's been building to since we first met him back in season one.

Salina: And it does feel special know, he was only supposed to be on the show for like five.

Salina: And so to me this kind of speaks to how beloved Meshach Taylor made this character because he's so magnetic and energetic and really brought a lot to it.

Salina: And so I think that just makes it all the more of a special experience to see that happen, knowing that background.

Salina: How about you?

Nikki: I get very sensitive about graduations, like even for people I don't know.

Nikki: So during graduation season, like when I'm driving through neighborhoods and people have their graduate signs out, I get very emotional.

Nikki: Graduation is just such a major life event and we talk a lot about how there aren't as many happy celebrations in life.

Nikki: Like, you have birthdays and you have the holidays, but I wish there was a celebration every single day and I think graduation is such a moment to celebrate.

Nikki: Very weepy.

Nikki: So I completely identified with Julia and Charlene getting choked up about Anthony, who we've grown to know and love, and he's overcome so many things, and he's just gonna graduate, and he just worked so hard.

Nikki: It was just very emotional for yeah, yeah.

Nikki: I'm getting weepy again.

Salina: You are.

Salina: Her eyes are welling with tears.

Nikki: It's the end of a chapter, Salina.

Nikki: That's what I'm trying to say.

Salina: Meanwhile, I'm over here dry and emotional.

Nikki: She's not having any reaction to all.

Salina: Of I was both angry at Suzanne for shooting Anthony, but also happy when.

Nikki: She said she loved my that's my other one was that her real feelings finally came out.

Salina: Yeah, she finally because remember, we've talked about it.

Salina: LBT.

Salina: Said if things went on long enough, she would have married them off.

Nikki: Oh, I love you, Anthony.

Salina: I have one more general reaction, which is that I think that we should consider this week's Jeopardy game pitting the ladies against each other.

Salina: Suzanne and Charlene on one hand, you got Mary Jo and Julia on the other side.

Salina: It's really a companion and a lead in to what we're going to see in the finale.

Salina: And taken together, I think it helps us better understand some of the emotions we're going to get from the ladies next week.

Salina: Okay.

Salina: Because I think if we forget that this happened when time went by and we were preparing for episodes, I was like, why are they so upset with one another in the last episode?

Salina: And then seeing this one again through fresh eyes and again this morning, I was like, oh, yeah, this has sort of been building.

Salina: So we've got some buildup.

Nikki: Okay.

Salina: Yeah.

Nikki: Okay.

Nikki: I can follow that.

Nikki: I was really bummed that Suzanne and Charlene lost it.

Nikki: Jeopardy.

Nikki: So we hear oftentimes.

Nikki: Charlene says she has a thirst for knowledge and she knows all kinds of random things.

Nikki: So I don't think it's not to be believed that Julia would be really good.

Nikki: And Mary Jo always seems to know random references, so it's not unbelievable.

Nikki: It just sucks.

Salina: You wanted a Bernice moment.

Nikki: I wanted a Bernice moment.

Nikki: I wanted Charlene to really go into the zone, and it would have been funny to have Suzanne pull a couple out of her b*** that you were just sort of like, how do you know that?

Nikki: And then she has, like she did in earlier episodes of the show, random reasons for knowing random things.

Nikki: Not because she's a book reader or highly educated, but just because it's related to that rich man she dated one time or something.

Salina: Well, and they did that in this one, too, with the bill of know because she had just helped someone cheat.

Nikki: To keep them in the.

Salina: Strays.

Nikki: Suzanne is back on rice cakes and aggressively.

Salina: Yeah.

Salina: Yeah.

Salina: Okay.

Salina: Because now rice cakes have returned more than many of the boyfriends.

Salina: We've you know, they've made more reappearances.

Salina: That's kind of interesting.

Salina: I also am wondering on that front, has she single handedly invented, which look, let me be very clear.

Salina: I totally identify with it.

Salina: I'm a almost I am on the verge of hanger.

Nikki: I was just about to say that.

Nikki: But I have good news for you, Salina.

Nikki: I brought some rice cake treats today because I do think there's a world in which rice cakes can fit into a nutritious diet.

Nikki: And I have found a couple of recipes that maybe aren't the peak of nutrition and whatever, but they are relatively healthy upgrades to a rice cake.

Nikki: So we should drop some of those into stories or on social media some way because I think you're going to like them.

Salina: Okay, so you're saying it's better than a few little pieces of crumbled rice stuck together by some tasteless locale fish saliva?

Nikki: I am saying that there are delicious ingredients on top of a couple of pieces of rice stabled together with fish saliva.

Nikki: I'm saying get down there.

Salina: There's going to be like, a pizza on top of a rice cake.

Nikki: It's going to be this is what I told Salina.

Nikki: She said she was going to make a salad today to go with my rice cake snacks, and she wanted to know if that was too much.

Nikki: And I said, Salina, like, you could put half of a cow on a rice cake and I'm still going to need a little something some on the side.

Salina: That's true.

Salina: But what did that salad look like?

Salina: It's like a steak dinner on top of a romaine lettuce.

Nikki: She's making a Cobb salad and it's like the most Cobby Cobb salad.

Salina: We wanted to give you the full cob.

Nikki: So yeah, Suzanne, if she ate my version of rice cake, she would have enjoyed it.

Nikki: But going back to that thing about Charlene, there was a cut line where Charlene repeats that she knows all the world's capitals in order, which I think we learned in the citizenship episode, incidentally, in another cut line.

Nikki: So she just has this random knowledge of the world that I really feel like would work to her benefit in.

Salina: Oh, yeah.

Salina: I'm just saying, could they just give Anthony a week's paid vacation as part of his gift?

Salina: That's all I could think during all of this is like, we just care about him so much.

Salina: And they're like, can you deliver these pillows?

Salina: And I'm like, okay.

Salina: He's running around like crazy.

Salina: He's stressed to the gills.

Salina: I mean, they seem concerned, but it feels like we're missing something a little obvious here.

Salina: Bernice gets it.

Salina: She took a cab instead of asking him to pick her up because she knows he's stressed this week.

Salina: Bernice is like, off in La La Land all the time, but she got it.

Salina: So I'm just saying, what's going on?

Nikki: I wasn't going to transition here, but you just led me to stress.

Nikki: I have a Nikki sidebar on stress.

Nikki: Is it okay to transition to it now and we can come back and finish straight.

Salina: Absolutely.

Nikki: Okay.

Nikki: It's a sidebar.

Nikki: Nikki sidebar.

Nikki: She's got a keyboard looking for a reward by digging deep in the obscure, taking us on a detour.

Nikki: What you got, Nikki?

Nikki: Nikki sidebar.

Nikki: Forget about that stupid thing.

Salina: Every time.

Salina: Good.

Salina: Every time.

Nikki: Well, I wasn't planning to transition yet.

Nikki: And I can tell that I caused maybe some stress for you by transitioning so quickly.

Salina: No, you're keeping me nimble.

Nikki: Let's do a sidebar called Best the Stress.

Nikki: Because, like you said, Anthony is going through it in this episode as he tells Charlene he's not nervous.

Nikki: He blew right past nervousness three days ago.

Nikki: He's on to night sweats and hyperventilation.

Nikki: This piece of this episode really resonated with me.

Nikki: I feel like I'm a fellow member of the Nerves of Rubber Bands group.

Nikki: That's akin to nerves of steel.

Nikki: I'm the opposite of that.

Nikki: I'm nerves of, I don't know, water.

Salina: I don't think of you that way.

Nikki: But, yeah, stress really gets me down.

Nikki: And anxiety really gets me down.

Nikki: So I think we both felt like maybe there was something that needed to be said here about stress.

Nikki: And so who better to give you tips on stress but the stressed person?

Salina: I think there's something to that.

Salina: Go ahead.

Nikki: So, first of all, who, the World Health Organization defines stress as a state of worry or moral tension.

Nikki: Sorry, not moral tension.

Nikki: Mental tension caused by a difficult situation.

Nikki: Their definition underscores that stress is a natural human response that prompts us to address challenges and threats in our lives, which everyone experiences.

Nikki: Almost every article you read notes that our bodies are designed to respond to stress.

Nikki: The whole fight or flight thing.

Nikki: What's not intended, though, is that we live in a state of distress, which is the version of stress that negatively affects our health and well being.

Salina: No, everybody always says that's Salina, she's just go with the flow.

Salina: So the way we were you don't have to laugh.

Salina: That heartily go with the flow.

Nikki: I suggested transitioning early and your eyes went the size of plates and I'm pretty sure your hands might still be shaking a little bit.

Salina: Jazz hands.

Nikki: The way we respond to stress is an important component of whether it's considered distress, which is sort of like I think of as the bad stress or you stress, which is that positive.

Nikki: Your body's reacting to save you from something.

Nikki: As who noted, there's probably a good chance you've experienced stress in your life, but it's possible you haven't.

Nikki: I almost don't want to list the symptoms in case you have them but don't identify them as stress.

Salina: Rip the bandaid off.

Nikki: The thought of a listener stressing stresses me.

Nikki: No, I can't list the symptoms because I don't have them for okay.

Nikki: But what I will do is I'm going to link in the show notes just look at me to the who.

Nikki: I mean, I could probably list them off.

Nikki: You shake a lot, you're a little bit sweaty.

Nikki: You always feel that pit in your stomach that feels like butterflies are just floating around in there.

Salina: But it's like not enjoyable.

Nikki: It's not fun.

Nikki: Not the love butterfly roller coaster of butterflies.

Nikki: It's like the whole world is about to fall on my head.

Salina: Right?

Salina: It's like you're in h***.

Salina: The flies.

Nikki: Yeah.

Nikki: So I'm going to put that who page in the show notes that will mention symptoms on symptoms.

Nikki: I will say that the symptoms of stress can exacerbate existing mental conditions like depression and anxiety.

Nikki: So I specifically looked up the difference between stress and anxiety because I talk about both of them interchangeably and I think other people do.

Nikki: They're actually not interchangeable.

Nikki: Stress can be thought of as sort of a short term thing.

Nikki: You're stressed about that meeting next week, or you're stressed about your kids performance on a test tomorrow.

Nikki: A stressed and upcoming vacation won't go as planned.

Nikki: Can you tell these were all things top of mind for me?

Salina: Not for you specifically.

Nikki: Anxiety is persistent, so it's not that meeting next week you're stressed about.

Nikki: It's constant anxiety about all the meetings and all the things going badly.

Nikki: An important distinction is that stress is usually caused by something external.

Nikki: Anxiety is self inflicted because I love.

Salina: Myself inflicting pain on myself, that is.

Nikki: I use them interchangeably because I experience them both at the same time often.

Salina: But I who says you can't?

Nikki: They can't have both hands.

Nikki: I bring that up because stress is totally normal.

Nikki: If it's something you experience once in a while, it actually can be helpful.

Nikki: Anxiety, on the other hand, may need some medical intervention.

Nikki: Beyond mental health, stress can also exacerbate physical health conditions like hypertension, diabetes, and skin conditions.

Nikki: You'd be surprised at some of the physical manifestations of what feels like a very mental condition.

Nikki: Your body turns on you when you're stressed persistently, and when you're anxious, persistently.

Salina: According to a web 35 whatever.

Nikki: Who's counting?

Salina: Yeah.

Nikki: According to a WebMD article I found, 43% of American adults report adverse health effects from stress.

Nikki: Is that high or low to you?

Nikki: 43% adverse health effects.

Salina: Well, I was over here nodding my head, so I'm going to say that sounds about right.

Nikki: Sounds about right, yeah.

Salina: And then I'd say there's probably a good chunk in there that probably aren't really that in tune with their body.

Nikki: I think that is probably it seemed low to me, and I think because of that, there's a lot of times that I'll be talking to someone.

Nikki: I know I've had conversations with you before where I'll say, like, I've just had a splitting headache for like a week now, and it just must be pressure changes in the air.

Nikki: And you're like, but could it be stress?

Nikki: And I'm like, oh, yeah, could be stress.

Nikki: Right now.

Nikki: I have my thumb.

Nikki: I'm a skin picker.

Nikki: When I get stressed.

Nikki: And that's right there.

Salina: Yes.

Nikki: Stress costs American industry about $300 million a year.

Nikki: So if I've adequately stressed, you out with facts and figures.

Salina: How about we probably all right, moving on.

Salina: Have fun.

Salina: How do we fix it?

Nikki: So when I did my working parent segment, I told you that I really struggle with silly tips and tricks.

Nikki: Like, if it were that simple, would I really be in this mess?

Nikki: Put it in your journal.

Nikki: That doesn't help me.

Nikki: Or if it's not, doable.

Nikki: One of the tips I keep reading about stress is, like, if you find yourself anxious or stressed throughout the workday, take a break whenever you need it, just take a bath.

Nikki: Right?

Salina: Take a bubble bath.

Nikki: Just take a nap.

Salina: You should use that next time.

Salina: Sorry, I'd love to attend this last minute meeting, but I have to go take a soap.

Nikki: I have my stress bath.

Salina: Yes.

Nikki: Those things really annoy me, because if I could step away from my desk every time someone annoyed me or stressed me out, I would wouldn't be at the desk.

Nikki: Right.

Nikki: But I wanted to focus on some tips that actually work for me personally or that I think have a lot of promise.

Nikki: So first up is gratitude.

Nikki: This one and the next one are a little hokey for some people, but stick with me because I'm not really a super hokey person.

Nikki: But gratitude is really important.

Nikki: When I had my daughter a few years ago, she was my first child, I really struggled mentally.

Nikki: I had a lot of trouble calibrating to this life where you're just stuck at home in four walls all the time, a slave to a small child who screams a lot.

Nikki: I struggled with that so much, and it became almost impossible to move past that, even before I had her.

Nikki: When you spent 90% of your day at work in four beige walls, and you're sort of like, what's the point of all of this?

Nikki: Why am I here?

Salina: I know, because I didn't want to minimize that struggle.

Salina: But at the same time, what you described at first also sounded like work.

Nikki: Yeah, it's very similar, and that's why I'm bringing up my personal examples, because this is how I felt it.

Nikki: But I think everyone feels it differently.

Nikki: But I think gratitude can be really helpful, because for me, I started a journal, and every day I would write just one thing I was grateful for.

Nikki: And super mundane things are the things that come to mind for me.

Nikki: So it's not like an exotic trip somewhere, necessarily, although certainly it is when I first come back from that trip.

Nikki: But it's not like, I am grateful that I have a billion dollars in the bank.

Nikki: It's things like, I'm grateful that we got that really good cup of coffee from the bag of beans we got at the farmers market.

Nikki: Or I'm grateful for our family conversations at dinner where my son said something really funny because it reminds me that his little brain is working overtime and all these things I'm overthinking is all so new to him and he's not even very mundane things, but are probably deeper than I give them credit for.

Nikki: My husband I recently wrote down I was grateful my husband made it home from a business trip safely.

Nikki: Really mundane things.

Nikki: But when I look back on that journal or look back on the prompts, it really helps me realize that there's so much in my everyday life to be grateful for that if I'm stressed about a presentation at work I think in 2 hours I'll be having dinner with my family and having that funny conversation.

Nikki: Or if I'm worried about something, anything.

Nikki: And I can think.

Nikki: But in two weeks we're going to be on vacation in Florida and I've planned a really fun bike excursion.

Nikki: Things like that just help me get through the day.

Nikki: And if you are present and thinking about it and jotting it down, it keeps it top of mind for you so everything else doesn't feel quite so serious.

Nikki: The cousin to gratitude in my mind is meditation.

Nikki: So if you want to graduate from writing down what you're grateful for, you could graduate into meditating on the things you're grateful for or meditating on some sort of internal piece.

Nikki: So this is one that I think when I say it, I feel very like, okay, I'll just meditate.

Nikki: I don't do it in like a 60 minutes of enlightened state sort of meditation.

Nikki: What I'll do is I'll finish my workout in the morning and sit down for five minutes and turn on a peloton guided meditation where they have you do a body scan, where you think about how you're really feeling today, or they have you think on something you're really grateful for.

Nikki: Or they have you imagine your heart and what is in your heart that forces you to be present for five minutes.

Nikki: And when you can be present for five minutes, you can tap back into that feeling later in the day when you're feeling anxious or stressed.

Salina: Yeah, that makes sense.

Nikki: So I think that's a really good one.

Nikki: And I also have found myself sometimes, on occasion not as often as it used to be, I'll wake up in the middle of the night stressed about something and I can tap back into the breathing that I did and the thinking that I did and fall right back to sleep.

Salina: That's nice.

Nikki: Very powerful.

Nikki: Doesn't always work.

Salina: Nothing worse than anxiety, waking up in the middle.

Nikki: It's horrible.

Salina: Obviously there are worse things, but it's really bad.

Nikki: It's really bad and it doesn't always work.

Nikki: There are still times I have trouble sleeping, but it's very helpful.

Nikki: Taking care of your body is another one that I think will probably lose people because at face value it's like okay, if it were that.

Nikki: Easy, wouldn't I just be doing it?

Nikki: And I think the answer is yes, I'd hope so.

Nikki: But also maybe not.

Nikki: But also it doesn't have to be that hard.

Nikki: So rather than stressing about something you can't control, what if you refocus that time on identifying one change you could make every day that would make your life better or your health better?

Nikki: So one of the examples that I read about is how caffeine really fuels anxiety and it makes you more anxious.

Nikki: You know, on sweet tea and TV, we're very big coffee fans.

Salina: Pry it out of my dead hand.

Nikki: There are days when I can tell I'm over caffeinated because my heart is literally pounding.

Salina: Sure.

Nikki: And when you're already anxious about something and then you fuel it more everything in moderation.

Nikki: In moderation and everything exactly.

Nikki: So this is an example of where maybe instead of focusing on what might happen tomorrow, you thought about, god, I'm really over caffeinated today.

Nikki: Maybe instead of drinking a triple espresso first thing in the morning, I should wait 30 minutes and then try like a double espresso.

Nikki: Or just come up with something that you can focus on and you can control that's actually better for you than just worrying in that time.

Nikki: Do you know what I mean?

Salina: Sure.

Nikki: Let's see.

Nikki: I'm going to talk about sleep is another one that really is divisive for people, because people are like, I just can't sleep.

Nikki: I have sleep issues, I can't sleep.

Nikki: And yes, some people definitely have diagnosed sleep issues, which I hope they're getting care for.

Nikki: Other people don't take their sleep hygiene seriously enough.

Nikki: It's just not as easy in today's world to put your head on a pillow and fall asleep at any time.

Nikki: Yeah, it's not that easy.

Nikki: I am militant about this one, I am obsessive about this one, but if I'm tired, it's not because I'm not well rested.

Salina: Can you say a little I assume you're going to say a little bit more about what you mean by sleep hygiene, right?

Salina: Yeah, I have an idea, but I'd like to hear.

Nikki: So I actually think having kids helped me understand this, because babies, newborn babies, can fall asleep anywhere.

Nikki: As they get older, they get more particular about where they can sleep and you want them to sleep longer.

Nikki: So I did blackout curtains in their rooms.

Nikki: So then I got darkening curtains in my room.

Nikki: I actually sleep with darkening curtains.

Nikki: A face mask, sometimes earplugs, if I'm feeling like there's just a lot going on and I can't sleep through it.

Nikki: We all sleep with a white noise machine and I have a nightguard because I grind my teeth on my sleep and I have a pillow that's really comfortable for me and I do every single one of those things every single night.

Nikki: And I make sure that I am in bed with my eyes closed, usually by 10:00 p.m., because I get up at five or 530.

Nikki: And that gets me right at about 8 hours of sleep, and I am militant about it.

Nikki: And the nights where I don't get enough sleep, the nights where I stay up late and treat myself to a movie, I feel it the next day.

Nikki: And when you're tired, you're stressed.

Salina: Oh, yeah.

Nikki: Because then you end up stressed about being tired.

Nikki: So I'm really, really militant about sleep.

Nikki: And the last one I wanted to offer, this was actually kind of interesting to me.

Nikki: So reframing your stress.

Nikki: So, again, I'm parsing out stress here.

Nikki: That like one time or every now and then thing.

Nikki: Not that persistent anxiety.

Nikki: If you're persistently anxious, that's different.

Nikki: Temporary stress, like presenting to a large group of people like Anthony was trying to do in this episode, or stress about how you will perform in an upcoming meeting, you could actually turn the stress of that into a good thing.

Nikki: So I listened to a ted talk called how to make stress your friend by Kelly McGonagall.

Nikki: So Kelly uses that talk to argue that are you ready?

Salina: I think so.

Nikki: It's not actually stress itself that's bad for you.

Nikki: It's the thought that stress is bad for you that's bad for you.

Nikki: So throughout her presentation, she offers compelling statistics that show deaths among people who reported stress were actually much higher among those who thought the stress was bad.

Nikki: So people might say they might say, like, are you stressed?

Nikki: And people are like, yeah.

Nikki: And they're like, do you think that's bad for you?

Nikki: The people who said, yes, it's bad for me.

Nikki: We're more likely to die than the people who are like, no, I mean, I'm not stressed that much.

Nikki: It's just every now and then I feel stressed.

Nikki: It's not that bad.

Nikki: Like, if you think it's not a big deal, then your body doesn't think it's a big deal.

Salina: Okay.

Salina: Yeah, I follow that.

Nikki: So her takeaway is that when you choose to view your stress response as helpful, you create the biology of courage.

Nikki: So if you tell yourself, like she did in an interview on NPR with Guy Raz, he asked her if she was feeling stressed and then what the symptoms were.

Nikki: She said she wouldn't describe them as symptoms.

Nikki: She said, I would describe them as changes that are taking place in my brain and body to help me rise to the moment that matters.

Nikki: So I'm feeling alert.

Nikki: I'm feeling a little bit more raw and vulnerable as I'm more open to the world around me.

Nikki: But I definitely feel I sense this type of stress as a surge of energy that's encouraging me to engage.

Salina: Yeah, I definitely feel that in, like, a presentation situation, I try and use that because I do get a jolted energy, and I try and use that to my advantage.

Salina: That's kind of rates like turning yourself on.

Nikki: I can assure you that thought had never occurred to me.

Salina: I mean, it doesn't mean I don't need a turtleneck because I splotch.

Salina: It's just I don't mean to I really get a surge of adrenaline.

Salina: I think I might even have an adrenaline issue.

Salina: And so it just comes all out on my body.

Salina: You can see it, but other than that, it just catapults you and you can kind of leverage it to work for you.

Nikki: That has never occurred to me.

Nikki: Yeah, I always think of it as a bad thing where I'm like, oh, my God, I look like such an idiot right now because I'm shaking so bad everyone can see I'm shaking.

Nikki: Oh, my hands are so sweaty.

Nikki: Everyone knows.

Nikki: She doesn't even know what she's doing.

Nikki: She's such an idiot.

Nikki: Look at everybody looking at me like, she's such an idiot.

Nikki: It's never once occurred to me to be like, you're excited, be excited, lean into it.

Salina: Yeah.

Nikki: Never occurred.

Salina: Well, you can't say that now.

Nikki: Well, I probably still can, but I'm going to try this one instead.

Nikki: I was going to say, I'm going to try.

Salina: That's all we can ever do is try.

Salina: Right?

Nikki: The best I know how to do.

Salina: Yeah.

Nikki: So that's all I got on stress.

Salina: Well, can I add one tip?

Salina: Please.

Salina: Midday dance party.

Nikki: Tried that.

Nikki: I tried that a couple of weeks ago because I was feeling so down.

Salina: Yeah, it did help.

Salina: I think for me, it really is like, I don't know, it will work for everyone.

Salina: I'm a really high energy person and I just always have like I'm like a hummingbird.

Salina: It's just like all the time.

Salina: So sometimes I have to go almost, like, shed that off.

Salina: And one way to do that for me is just I literally go just go play one or two songs real quickly.

Salina: And I realize I want to make sure that sounds very sometimes it's at the end of the day, I can't always go like, oh, it's 02:00.

Salina: I think I'll go dance my 02:00 dance party.

Salina: Put on a couple of songs that I really enjoy and I just dance around.

Salina: It's silly.

Salina: I wouldn't want anyone to see me do it.

Salina: Also, singing relieves stress for me too, but everybody's got to kind of find the thing that works for them.

Salina: And that's tough because that right there is a lifelong journey.

Salina: It is.

Nikki: And I think so much of it in everything that I read.

Nikki: I think you can focus on a lot of little things.

Nikki: So, like, you can focus on cortisol levels and how your caffeine is fueling your cortisol level or how when you don't get enough sleep, it triggers certain biological reactions in your body.

Nikki: You can focus on that stuff.

Nikki: But to me, for the issues that I have, the root cause is worrying about things I have no control over, because that is my way of controlling the uncontrollable.

Nikki: If I can't control the situation, at least I can predict and control my own reaction or I can predict and control how I'm going to react to you reacting.

Nikki: And then I find myself persistently in fight or flight because I am persistently trying to figure out how I'm going to defend myself against this invisible opponent, whatever the situation is.

Salina: I also think part of the secret sauce not that I'm good at this, and I think this is what some of that Ted Talk was sort of is like maybe a little bit is like care less, and that some people need to care more.

Salina: But if you're someone who cares a lot, maybe you need to care less.

Salina: And I'm saying that to myself.

Salina: There are just some situations where you just sort of like in terms of prioritizing, I do feel like I'm at least able to see it more now.

Salina: And prioritizing yourself.

Salina: Let yourself be in that mix or it's going to feel real crappy.

Salina: Yeah.

Nikki: You cannot give everything the same amount of attention and worry and energy.

Nikki: Right.

Nikki: And so there do need to be certain things in your life that you're just like, this is the thing, I'm going to let go and you're not.

Salina: Always going to get it right.

Nikki: Yeah.

Salina: And I think if you're like a perfectionist, I think that's the number one hard thing to let go of, right?

Salina: Because you want to hold all the things and you want it all to be good and it's okay if everybody else is crappy, but by God, I'm not going to be crappy.

Salina: And you only need one coach to tell you that.

Salina: Actually, that's a really stinking thinking to be like, oh, that is a terrible thing to think.

Salina: You shouldn't hold people to high standards.

Salina: You shouldn't hold people to low standards either.

Salina: And every day I'm just falling short.

Nikki: It's so hard.

Nikki: And then even when you do, your hand is forced a little bit sometimes at certain points of your life.

Nikki: So having kids forced my hand a little bit.

Nikki: I can't do all the things all the time for everybody.

Nikki: I just physically and mentally cannot.

Nikki: I am just one person.

Nikki: But then when you start letting things go and you start letting I think of it as letting my standards slip and I'm like, I'm going to let this go.

Nikki: It's just not that important that the sink is clean.

Salina: Nick you know what's crazy?

Salina: I can see that for you.

Salina: I can't always see it for me.

Salina: For you, I'm like, you just go easy on yourself.

Salina: For me, I'm like, you good, it together.

Nikki: And the flip of that is same here.

Nikki: In my head, it's the negative self talk is really the problem.

Nikki: It's whatever's happening in here, we've got to reframe.

Nikki: And I have certainly had a few times in the last few weeks where I've told myself, just be kind to yourself.

Nikki: What if you were thinking about my daughter?

Nikki: Because she's sometimes like the mirror for me.

Nikki: I think would you say that to her?

Nikki: Would you do that to her?

Salina: Exactly.

Nikki: Would you really?

Nikki: And I'm like, no.

Nikki: God, no.

Nikki: She should sleep in.

Nikki: She's tired.

Nikki: Why would she get up to work out today?

Nikki: Just to check a box?

Nikki: She's tired.

Nikki: Right.

Nikki: So I tell myself, you're tired, just sleep.

Nikki: It's not going to hurt anybody.

Salina: Right.

Nikki: You're going to be fine.

Salina: Right.

Salina: Or be able to tell yourself that thing that I know.

Salina: I've looked at you and I've said it and I've said it to a few other friends recently, which is I wish that you could see what I see.

Nikki: Yeah, that's tough.

Salina: It sure is.

Salina: A lifelong journey is really distorted.

Salina: It is.

Salina: But luckily, we've solved stress.

Salina: But those are some good tips.

Salina: I'm going to incorporate some of those this week.

Nikki: And a stress about you're going to.

Salina: See a whole new Salina.

Salina: Salina this next week.

Salina: It's going to be crazy.

Salina: You just get ready.

Nikki: You're going to start drinking again.

Salina: Well, you would see a new Salina.

Nikki: Then just let it go.

Salina: Just whatever.

Nikki: Did you have other strays that I cut off?

Salina: Well, there are stray.

Nikki: Strays.

Nikki: Oh, I like stray.

Nikki: Strays.

Salina: I know.

Salina: We love a stray.

Nikki: Strays.

Nikki: I do.

Nikki: Stray.

Salina: Well, I'm drinking already.

Salina: So they're both related to Anthony.

Salina: Just that we've rewritten the history on where Anthony's grandma is from.

Salina: I had to go look at some of this.

Salina: It doesn't matter.

Salina: It doesn't matter.

Salina: But I already looked it up.

Salina: I'm going to share it.

Salina: Which is at first, like, back in season two, she was from Macon, and then in season three, she is in Memphis.

Salina: And so I'm not sure where the discrepancy happened.

Salina: It's very clear that this is the grandmother in his it doesn't it seems like she's been in Memphis for a long time.

Salina: There was never any explanation between one and the other.

Salina: The show bible, man, they just keep your show bible.

Nikki: Two cities in Georgia and Tennessee for people who are not from Georgia or Tennessee.

Nikki: That's right.

Nikki: Cities that start with an M.

Nikki: That's right.

Nikki: They're the same.

Nikki: Right.

Salina: And then the other thing is just distance.

Salina: The distance between hearts and minds.

Salina: No, it's the distance between Atlanta and Memphis.

Salina: Back in season three, we had the same problem.

Salina: They said it was 700 miles between Atlanta and Graceland.

Salina: That's just not true.

Salina: And then Anthony says his grandma in this episode is over 600 miles.

Salina: Like, that's how long it's going to take her to get down here to get to graduation.

Salina: It's 391 miles.

Salina: I'm splitting hairs.

Salina: But I mean, 200 miles, that's twice as long.

Salina: 200 miles means something.

Salina: Yeah, but maybe they're tacking on some extra trips.

Salina: Maybe they go to the buckies.

Nikki: Maybe they didn't have the same highway system then.

Nikki: Maybe they didn't have as much.

Nikki: They had to take more back roads, I guess.

Salina: Well, she had to get in her.

Nikki: Horse and buggy, get to the interstate where she was picked up by an automobile and then driven down.

Salina: Right.

Salina: She wanted to hand deliver that letter.

Salina: She wrote them.

Nikki: Right.

Salina: It's tough.

Salina: So we want to talk about things we liked about the episode.

Nikki: I will say the fact that it never occurred to charlene and Suzanne to just go buy another version of the board game which keys us up for the next episode, as you said earlier, I have to just say that never would have occurred to me because I also like to take the path of most resistance.

Nikki: So I want to make sure that work for the cheat doing the most right.

Salina: Yeah.

Salina: If you're going to cheat, work for it.

Salina: So I'm okay with that.

Nikki: That was so funny.

Nikki: I really liked that because I was like, holy crap.

Nikki: I would not have thought of that.

Nikki: But my absolute favorite part of the episode, only very briefly, alluded to potential bribery on the part of Anthony in the hospital room when Suzanne asked if he was going to press charges and he was sort of like, not if you play your cards right.

Nikki: Then we get the reveal that he secured a really big check from her at the end.

Nikki: I loved that.

Salina: Oh, I thought it was great.

Nikki: So good.

Salina: Yeah.

Salina: I really like charlene's ramblings about nicknames, which is quite southern.

Salina: So she says, like, there's this guy in poplar bluff named know.

Nikki: There's no reason for it.

Salina: He doesn't play pool or anything.

Salina: And there's another guy named deacon, but he never goes to church.

Salina: Matter of fact, there's a guy named booger and that's where they cut her off.

Salina: And that is really true.

Salina: Like, we've talked about that before.

Salina: She is from the midwest, but there are some crazy nicknames in the south that have nothing to do with nothing.

Nikki: It's true.

Salina: And I liked it.

Salina: What else did you like about this one?

Nikki: Suzanne was really hot in this episode and really snappy.

Nikki: And she had a couple of lines that I thought were really funny.

Salina: I thought you meant like hot.

Nikki: No.

Nikki: Oh, gosh.

Salina: Oh, okay.

Salina: That's very unfair to her.

Nikki: Nippy snappy.

Nikki: I mean, yeah, sure.

Nikki: But I wasn't thinking that.

Nikki: I was thinking about she just had hot takes, like her hot take on computers.

Nikki: Why would you spend money, good money to buy something that's not even alive but can still get sick?

Nikki: I'm a fellow slow adopter, so that line really hit me.

Salina: You're a real luddite.

Nikki: That's me.

Salina: I don't really think of you that.

Nikki: Way, but I always say I'm a luddite.

Salina: Maybe in your house with Kyle.

Nikki: Yes.

Salina: Okay.

Nikki: Yeah.

Salina: Because he's on the trends.

Nikki: He's on everything.

Nikki: He needs to be connected.

Nikki: Right.

Nikki: She commented on Anthony's nervousness.

Nikki: Good lord.

Nikki: Why'd they even pick you?

Nikki: She said about his writer's block, if I didn't have one word on paper 48 hours before the ceremony and was just going to get up there in front of hundreds of people and laugh like a hyena, I'd be worried too.

Nikki: Yeah, that was just really funny.

Nikki: And then the other two things I really liked their Jeopardy game was really relatable to me as a competitor.

Nikki: And Anthony's speech was just really lovely.

Nikki: Especially when he talks about what his grandmother told him about the crayola box.

Nikki: That just really got me.

Salina: Yep, that was it.

Salina: Well, you got all so but what that means is strength of the episode, man.

Salina: What about things you didn't like?

Nikki: So mine is sort of the structure of the episode.

Nikki: So one of the general reactions I didn't really mention was that sometime thinking about these episodes back, I forget which lines were together.

Nikki: So the Jeopardy game being paired with Anthony's graduation, I'm likely to forget those two were together because there's no obvious through line.

Nikki: They're just sort of paired together.

Salina: Right.

Nikki: And it makes it really hard for me, one, to remember episodes and then two, to remember the narrative that we were supposed to have in mind because these things were together.

Nikki: Right.

Nikki: So that's one piece of what I didn't like.

Nikki: The other thing I didn't like is I thought this would have better season ender spoiler alert than the last episode is.

Nikki: So I hated that this episode didn't end the season because I feel like it's just such a nice bow.

Salina: Yeah, that's fair.

Salina: So mine is actually that for an episode named Anthony's graduation, it fell in name mean, he wasn't even really in the episode that much.

Salina: Just long enough to get shot, give his graduation speech, which was amazing.

Salina: And I'm not taking away from that at all.

Salina: That was really good.

Salina: But I actually might argue, though, if you poll people, would they think of this as the graduation episode or would this be the episode where Suzanne shot Anthony and who that really feels unfair to is Meshach Taylor.

Salina: And don't mess with me, you know.

Nikki: And quite frankly, when I think about the episode again, I focused on the Jeopardy thing.

Nikki: The shooting Anthony thing is a whole.

Salina: Other thing, like very long.

Salina: Not that I didn't enjoy it, right, because I agree with you.

Salina: I don't know, it's just fun.

Salina: And I think everybody enjoys trivia.

Salina: You could throw trivia just about anywhere and I'm like wrinkle on my brain.

Salina: But I also thought a lot about it was a lot of real estate.

Salina: I have one other thing that I didn't particularly care for, which was in the speech, and only because it seemed weird to me.

Salina: Okay.

Salina: I know he cares a lot about the ladies, but I felt like the way the writers included them in his speech didn't ring true for me.

Salina: Taught him style and elegance.

Salina: It just kind of felt weird for a speech about going out into the world.

Salina: There was just some aspects of it that I was like, I did get the part because I rewatched it this morning where he talks about if I didn't have those people, that trusted circle of people both before I went into jail and afterwards, I wouldn't be who I'm today.

Salina: Great.

Salina: That makes perfect sense.

Salina: But, yeah, I think it was really the style they taught me about style and elegant.

Salina: I'm like, really?

Salina: That's what they okay, not that that's not a nice thing to say.

Salina: It just felt weird for this particular speech.

Salina: Other than that, I was all in on that speech.

Salina: Okay.

Salina: You want to rate this sucker?

Salina: Yes.

Nikki: My rating scale is graduation hyperventilation paper bags.

Salina: Got to have one with you at all times.

Nikki: At all times.

Nikki: I am going to give this one a four out of five.

Nikki: I had 4.5 out of five, but I'm taking it down a smidge.

Nikki: And really, the more I think about it, the more the structure of the episode is really kind of hard to overcome.

Salina: Yeah.

Nikki: Usually that stuff I don't think too much about that stuff, but I think so.

Salina: You're asked to sit down and talk about it for 35 to 45 to an hour.

Nikki: I've been in a frame of mind recently of trying to even as we end up this season, as we're wrapping things up and trying to remember where we've even been this season, I'm trying to think about what were the high point episodes for me and this, that and the other.

Nikki: And sometimes when we talk about things and you'll mention something, I'm like, oh, that was this season, or oh, that was this episode.

Nikki: And part and Parcel is how long the seasons are.

Nikki: But I think the other part is these things just get thrown together in such a wonky way sometimes that I'm like, Was that the episode Anthony got shot?

Nikki: Or was that the episode he graduated?

Nikki: Or is that the same thing?

Nikki: Did we shoot him and graduate him in the same episode?

Salina: Yes.

Salina: Madness.

Nikki: What about you?

Salina: I also give it a four out of five.

Salina: Not at all.

Salina: Guilt ridden donations was my rating scale.

Salina: And despite the things that I didn't love about it, it's an enjoyable episode, especially as we close in on the end of the season.

Salina: I can see your take on not making it the final episode.

Salina: I'm going to raise a counterpoint, though, which is I don't necessarily agree with this when showrunners do this, but I feel like often they do a better job in the penultimate than they do in the finale.

Salina: I wonder if sometimes that's because we have so many expectations around a finale.

Salina: And a lot of times, not in this show, but a lot of times you're like planting seeds.

Salina: And so sometimes you spend it's almost more like an opener.

Salina: You're planting seeds in the opener, you're planting seeds.

Salina: You know what I'm saying?

Salina: And so a lot of times you'll get, like, big reveals and that kind of stuff.

Salina: And then penultimates.

Nikki: Right?

Nikki: That makes sense.

Nikki: I don't agree with it, but it makes sense.

Nikki: I'm not a cliffhanger person.

Salina: You don't like it because it gets me every time.

Nikki: I don't care for it because I'm an anxious person and I'm thinking about what's happening in the future.

Nikki: So I spend so much time trying to like I think about Game of Thrones because I thought that's probably 42 weeks.

Nikki: The toughest watch that I've ever stuck with the longest.

Nikki: And you would get to the end and they were just known for their cliffhangers.

Nikki: And you'd get to the end and I'd be like, well, what's going to happen?

Salina: And some of the biggest ones were like, the Red Wedding.

Salina: And these kinds of things were the penultimate.

Nikki: And so that leaves me if they were going to do that in the episode before the end, right.

Nikki: What seeds are they planting here?

Nikki: That's going to happen next season.

Nikki: And I spend so much time thinking, like, what am I waiting for next season, watching this?

Nikki: So it becomes a whole thing for me, for sure.

Nikki: Almost as if I take my TV too seriously.

Salina: Life's hard, isn't it hard, man.

Salina: See?

Salina: Stress tips.

Salina: So I did think it was meaningful to see this mile marker for a character we love so much and to meet his grandma.

Salina: That's another reason I rated it so high.

Salina: And then there were some actual stakes injected into the episode.

Salina: They were weird.

Salina: She shot them.

Salina: But it was also like, you can see that they've sort of been lacing this in since whenever she first got a gun.

Salina: We've been lacing this in, getting shot.

Salina: Now we're there.

Salina: Now she's got to pay up.

Salina: So all that sort of comes together in this episode.

Salina: And that was another reason I rated it as high as a four.

Salina: Would you like to talk about 90s things?

Salina: Yeah.

Nikki: So an operator interrupting a phone call, which is what Charlene pretended to do.

Salina: At the top of the episode.

Salina: I had a lot of questions.

Nikki: This is not a thing that would happen now.

Salina: Yeah.

Nikki: Pink wallpaper is what Mary Jo said the client Rhonda Faye loved at the top of the episode.

Nikki: Wallpaper is having a moment again, but it is the entire computer discussion.

Nikki: That entire five minutes of my life felt very 90s.

Salina: It also felt like we'd experienced it before.

Salina: And I don't remember, maybe you and I had, like, an offline conversation where we were like, that is weird, like, even for them, that they wouldn't understand what viruses are.

Salina: I went back in my notes, like, trying to look for where that was a joke that I had seen before or something, and I never tracked it back.

Salina: So I might be having a deja vu moment.

Nikki: Or maybe we were talking about this episode.

Salina: Maybe we've been here before, who knows?

Salina: There's infinite possibilities, according to string theory.

Salina: So I don't know.

Salina: But it just felt so familiar to me.

Salina: I couldn't shake it.

Nikki: The last 90s thing I had was Bernice's disgusting taxi ride.

Nikki: So she just talks about how the car was really dirty.

Nikki: It smelled like cigarettes.

Nikki: There were birth control devices on the floor.

Nikki: I bring that up only because Uber has at least spoiled me, because I don't think I've ever been in a dirty Uber.

Nikki: I've definitely smelt cigarette smoke in them before, but I've never been in a downright dirty one smoke.

Nikki: Yes, but they're usually really clean.

Salina: Yeah, or like although sometimes, like, the air fresheners just an annoying amount so much where it's like your eyes just sort of glue to the eyebrow.

Salina: Yeah, but we're all trying.

Nikki: That was my last 90s thing, so.

Salina: I've got two more.

Salina: Anthony's grandma refuses to talk long distance.

Salina: That's how we get the whole letter thing.

Salina: But the other one is and this is interesting, so it was a cut line.

Salina: You mentioned the Donald Trump reference in the last one.

Salina: We get another Donald Trump reference in this one for the scandal category.

Salina: And I just wanted to say, in thinking of that know, I just assumed because at this mean, I was five, I knew all of the like, I I'm familiar enough with what was going on.

Salina: This is when he and Ivana were divorcing, and it was a very messy divorce.

Salina: So if you think about when this was airing and when it was probably being written, I just assumed that it was in the tabloids, like, all the time.

Salina: And I think it was pretty much tabloid fodder for all of 1990.

Salina: They actually didn't officially settle until 1992.

Salina: So infamous is their divorce that she winds up making a funny cameo in the 1996 movie The First Wives Club, which I do literally remember having to turn to my mom and being like, I don't get it.

Salina: And she had to sit there and explain it to me.

Salina: And then along with just other recent passings that have just fallen out of my brain, ivana did actually pass away last year around this time, actually, at age 73.

Salina: Not to bring it down, but anyways, Southern things.

Salina: I don't have anything you mentioned the pink wallpaper, Rhonda.

Salina: Faye.

Salina: She said she was annoyed by her accent, and it's just like Southern on Southern accent annoyance.

Nikki: Yeah.

Salina: It happens, though.

Nikki: Her impression of Rhonda.

Nikki: Faye's accent to me was less about her accent and more about her tone of voice and the way that she says things.

Salina: I think that's fair.

Salina: Although I also kind of know that accent.

Salina: Kind of know that I well, I was also wondering if anybody bumped on the fact that Mary Jo also has a thick accent.

Salina: So if you're not not everyone loves a Southern accent, so if you don't love it, you might have been like, really?

Nikki: Yeah.

Salina: I don't know.

Salina: I like her accent a lot.

Salina: Memphis is another Southern thing that was on mine, and then the nickname.

Salina: Thing, again, was very Southern, even though Charlene is from the Midwest.

Salina: References we need to Talk About I.

Nikki: Think there were probably a lot in that Jeopardy game, and I'm taking a gamble that you probably caught a lot of them.

Nikki: So I'm taking the easy way out to say that it was tedious for me to go through them.

Nikki: So I don't have them.

Nikki: One that I do have is getting in a tower and hurting some people, which was Suzanne's reference about her anger over rice cakes.

Nikki: Do you think she was talking about Diehard?

Nikki: Or do you know what that means?

Nikki: Because Diehard came out in 88 maybe.

Salina: But I think she's just talking about people who got up in a tower and shot a bunch of people.

Nikki: Is it a specific thing?

Salina: I did not think of it as specifically tracked to either something in the current conversation or anything like that.

Salina: I think that is just almost like I don't want to say a trope of the time, but have you ever seen the original?

Salina: Mm hmm.

Salina: Okay.

Salina: In that movie, Steve Martin has flashbacks, or like, they're flash forwards, actually, where he's picturing how his son might grow up based on what he does now.

Salina: And then sometimes in these visions that he has, he's like seeing Kevin go on to do these amazing things, but then something bad will happen that day.

Salina: And then he has this horrible thing, and there's one where he goes up.

Salina: He's like, he should be graduating that day, but he didn't graduate, and so he's picking off people with a shotgun from the top of a tower.

Salina: And I think that was something that was just sort of like in the culture that was almost handled in a very light way.

Nikki: There was definitely because I was trying to figure it out, like, LBT does things for a reason.

Nikki: So I sort of just thought maybe there was some huge terrorist attack in the late 80s or early ninety s, and I just couldn't I mean, I found several.

Nikki: So, to your point, yes, it seems like it happened a lot, but it just felt very specific.

Nikki: But also the virgin and volcano thing threw me, too, so I don't know what to tell you.

Salina: I think maybe at some point in time, in different references, maybe I found where someone really did go up in a tower.

Salina: But I think I might have even decided not to talk about it because it just got real sad.

Salina: Yeah, but anyways, I don't think we get that reference today for sure.

Nikki: I mean, it has a totally different which I think is why it caught my ear.

Nikki: I was like, Whoa.

Nikki: What?

Salina: Right.

Nikki: So I think that's exactly why I was like, this must be about something specific, because surely we wouldn't be making this joke and understanding this didn't happen today.

Nikki: But it just rings differently, I think, in a millennial's ear.

Salina: Well, I'm going to tell you something?

Salina: Yes, I did look up some of the references.

Salina: But you know what?

Salina: I'm not going to share them.

Salina: You know why?

Salina: Because I'm looking at them and they're pretty boring.

Salina: Except for this one.

Nikki: Okay.

Salina: Parker house rolls.

Nikki: Oh, yeah.

Salina: You love a Parker house.

Nikki: I love a Parker house.

Nikki: I love all kinds of rolls.

Salina: They're buttery, soft and slightly sweet with a crispy shell.

Salina: I had some when we were on our yeast rolls.

Nikki: Right.

Salina: Essentially, yeah.

Salina: I think the only thing that really makes them stand out is they're kind of dented looking.

Salina: And there's apparently, like, a lot of different iterations of the story of how they came to be, but it basically involves an angry pastry chef growing unfinished rolls into the oven, which results in their dented appearance.

Salina: And they first went to the Parker House hotel in Boston in the 1870s.

Salina: They've been around a long time.

Nikki: Yeah.

Nikki: Do you think brown and serve rolls are the same thing as Parker House rolls?

Salina: I was having a lot of this thought when I was overthinking rolls, but that deserves all of the overthinking in the world.

Salina: And I wonder if a lot of are like carbon copies, whether it's Sister Hubert's or whatever, because they definitely there's a lot of rolls that have that dented appearance, right?

Salina: Yeah.

Nikki: We used to eat brown and serve rolls.

Nikki: That was just part of the staple of meatloaf night in my house growing up, and they are my favorite.

Salina: Have you ever finished off a pan of rolls before?

Nikki: I have not.

Nikki: But I learned from a friend a few years ago that you can get a pan of rolls from Texas Roadhouse.

Salina: Okay.

Nikki: You can just get the rolls, and it is not unheard of for people to finish that entire pan in one sitting.

Nikki: It's like a dozen Krispy Kreme donuts that are warm.

Salina: You know, like someone has a tapeworm, and then they can eat as much as they want.

Salina: I have this for rolls.

Salina: I can eat so many rolls.

Salina: I don't feel good about myself at the end.

Salina: But if you have one and it's delicious, and suddenly they're just going down like water.

Salina: I don't know.

Nikki: Anyway, I always get rolls, man, during big meals.

Nikki: I get one roll on my first set, and then I eat, like, the whole plate.

Nikki: And then I will wait before I get another roll because they go down really fast, but they expand really fast.

Nikki: Not for you.

Salina: No.

Salina: And then I have it as, like, a little dessert at the end.

Salina: Yeah.

Salina: And then I have dessert.

Salina: Well, yeah, I like to think of it as my dinner plate dessert.

Nikki: Right.

Salina: And then pie.

Nikki: Yes.

Salina: Okay.

Nikki: I do get that.

Salina: It's all very healthy.

Salina: Actually, I did have one more, but this isn't from the Jeopardy game.

Salina: This is from Anthony's speech.

Nikki: Okay.

Salina: He said something that I just needed to know, and he references a famous commencement speech where basically the person says, I've got one piece of advice for you today.

Salina: Don't go.

Salina: And that person was Bob Hope.

Salina: So there you go.

Salina: And I'm done.

Nikki: He's a wise man, Bob Hope.

Salina: You thought you were going to get a bunch of references.

Nikki: No, I didn't think I was going to.

Nikki: I knew I was going to, and I was like, I am not going to sit here and go through every one of these because she's going to know exactly what she wants to say about them and I'm just going to let her have it.

Salina: I just want the role.

Nikki: So next Episode season four, episode 27.

Nikki: We've alluded to it.

Nikki: The time is now.

Nikki: It is the season finale.

Nikki: LaPlace Sansucci.

Salina: Yeah, that's what I said.

Salina: LaPlace Sansucci.

Salina: Sansucci.

Nikki: Sansucci.

Nikki: So we'd love everyone to follow along with us and engage Instagram and Facebook at Sweet tea and TV TikTok at sweettvpod.

Nikki: Search for us on YouTube.

Nikki: Our email address is sweettvpod at gmail and our website is WW

Nikki: You can find several ways to support the show from our website.

Nikki: And also please tell your family and friends about us and rate and review the podcast wherever you listen.

Nikki: And then come back Thursday for extra sugar.

Nikki: Because we're going to talk about we're.

Salina: Going to talk about some lesser known parts of black history.

Nikki: Sounds?

Salina: Oh, I guess educational.

Salina: It's my role.

Nikki: It's your role.

Nikki: It's your Parker house.

Salina: It's my Parker House role.

Salina: And you know what that means.

Nikki: Nikki what does it mean?

Nikki: Salina.

Salina: It means I'm hungry.

Salina: And it means we'll see you around the bend.

Salina: Bye.


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