Chapter 17

Need a lawyer :-)

Tom and Ray Magliozzi were a couple of car mechanics born in Cambridge, Massachusetts, who achieved fame in life for a radio show called Car Talk. Although I never listened to it or was even aware of it for that matter, their show apparently ran on National Public Radio in the United States for many years and had a cult following.

From what I gather, people would call in from all over the country while the show was on the air and ask the brothers for help in diagnosing and repairing problems they were having with their cars; or ask about how to maintain their vehicles in good running order if they weren’t having problems.

The brothers would use those calls to offer a running commentary on whatever happened to be on their minds at the moment, usually a mixture of advice and jokes directed at their callers and themselves.

Like I said, Car Talk had a devoted following and ran on the radio for many years. Eventually the brothers retired although original episodes are apparently still in syndication in various places. There’s also still an official web site devoted to the program. Tom, the older of the two brothers, died in 2014, but Ray is still alive, at least as of this writing.

The reason I mention this is that the brothers named their business corporation Dewey, Cheetham & Howe, which is also traditionally the name of a crooked but fictional American law firm. There are a number of variants of the name, all of which sum up traditional American views about lawyers. It’s a long-running gag that’s been used in many different books, shows, movies, and jokes.

More to the point, the brothers housed their corporate offices in a third-floor office at the corner of Brattle and JFK Streets in Cambridge and over the years it’s become something of a legendary local landmark. If you ever get to Harvard Square, look up, literally, and you’ll see the name of this mythical law firm above you. You’ll also find a reference to it in tonight’s chapter.

Last week, after spending the weekend together and discussing the problems Sean was having with the men he works for, the boys visited Professor Jeffords’ office. Sean was delighted with all the Red Sox memorabilia, but the real purpose of the visit was to give the Professor a chance to persuade Sean to apply to Harvard.

That caught Sean by surprise. But after Professor Jeffords was able to address a bunch of his concerns, Sean decided to fill out the necessary paperwork, which Holden then returned to Professor Jeffords the following morning.

Having done so, Holden was on his way back to Wigglesworth when he ran into Roger and spilled the beans about what was afoot. Roger seemed delighted with the good news, but the comments suggest you’re not buying that so we’ll have to see.

We’re moving into the final stages of the story and that means tying up all the loose ends still outstanding. We’ll do some of that tonight in Chapter 17, which is now up. Have fun reading and be sure to come back on Thursday for the final serving of Stuffed.

By the way, I’m going to try to schedule that for an earlier appearance on Thanksgiving Day, perhaps around noon, as I’ll be celebrating the day with friends. I hope the day is a happy one for my American friends and that everyone will take a few moments to reflect on what you have to thankful for after finishing the story.


2 thoughts on “Chapter 17

  1. Kit, I love Car Talk every weekend, so I know well “Dewey, Cheatham and Howe”. But the fun thing today is your tie-in to Harvard Square. Who knew?

    If I ever get back there again, I’ll look for that sign and chuckle.

    Now that I’m stuffed and yawning, I’m going to enjoy two chapters tonight – a little Sean and a little Landon. And just a little tequila and grapefruit juice.

    All good things to you this day, my friend.


    1. Never having listened to the show, you probably know more about Dewey, Cheatham and Howe than I do, Dean. But it’s a great name for a law firm.

      I had a good day and got home late. I’m taking Friday off as well so I guess I should be off to make the most of it.

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