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Seinfeld: The Abstinence | Episode 143 Recap Podcast

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Rob Cesternino and Akiva Wienerkur continue their journey to watch every Seinfeld episode as they discuss Season 8, Episode 9, “The Abstinence”.

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Seinfeld Post Show Recaps: The Abstinence

Rob Cesternino and Akiva Wienerkur won’t turn into goblins as they bring you this week’s Seinfeld Post Show Recap. This time, they discussed “The Abstinence”, which first aired November 21, 1996 as part of season eight. The episode was written by Steven Koren, marking his first episode writing for the show.

Jerry’s Storyline - Jerry has a career day gig at his old school, but someone from the Bronx Zoo has exotic animals, so they bumped Jerry.  When his agent Katie hears of this, she concerned, and decides she’s going to fix it.  She gets the school to agree to a two hour assembly, having them bump singer Rick James.  He decides to let George spend some of his stage time with his newfound knowledge, but when George shows after having sex and all out of intelligence, Jerry is forced to go out and bomb in front of the kids. Grade: Akiva – B, Rob – B+

George’s Storyline - George’s new girlfriend Louise has developed mono, so they can’t be intimate for a few weeks.  At first he laments this, but soon notices that he’s thinking a lot clearer, even getting smarter since his brain realized sex was not an option.  He uses this newfound brainpower to read, study, and even give tips to the Yankees on the physics of baseball.  When his ability to speak Portuguese to a waitress at the diner in her language leads to him having a rendezvous with her, all the knowledge he gained in his abstinence went right out the window, leaving Jerry to fill the two hour time slot his agent booked for him at their old school. Grade: Akiva – A, Rob – A

Elaine’s Storyline - Elaine is dating a new man who’s studying to become a doctor, though struggling to pass the test.  When she notices how smart George is getting from his abstinence, she decides to withhold sex from Ben, hoping it will help him finally become a doctor.  The plan backfires though, as Elaine starts to become dumber from her abstinence.  Her bad luck further compounds when Ben finally becomes a doctor, then immediately dumps her, knowing he can do better than her since passing the test. Grade: Akiva – A, Rob – A-

Kramer’s storyline - Kramer faces the problem of being kicked out of every place he goes because they ban smoking.  When he is out shivering with the other outcasts smoking, he decides that he is going to turn his apartment into a smoking lounge.  The lounge is a success, as the revolving crowd stays pretty steady, but soon Kramer starts showing the effects of the extreme exposure to smoke.  Since the tobacco companies don’t have any warnings about the cosmetics of smoking, he enlists Jackie Child’s help.  The lawsuit is on, but soon Kramer ruins it again for Jackie, as he agrees to settle with the tobacco company by them making him the Marlboro Man.  Grade: Akiva – A-, Rob – B+

Episode Ranking – 23

Emails - Johnny De Silveira asked if either of them have remembered where they put something 25 years after losing it.  Matt wondered why Jerry didn’t fire his agent after the events of “The Diplomat Club”.  Caleb wondered if Rob had any cool Letterman stories.  Lindsay asked if either of them had any great career day guests throughout school.  Craig lauded the show for getting the newly minted world series champions in Derek Jeter and Bernie Williams.
April, a new emailer asked if either of them have been bumped in favor of someone else.  Mike commented how he likes to listen to the podcast in half speed, rather than double speed.  Dan the benefactor pointed out that George isn’t far off in his claim to be a part of the Yankees’ success.  Amir wondered why baseball wasn’t full of geniuses, given George’s success from using physics.  He also asked why Elaine wouldn’t take care of her situation by becoming master of her domain.  Lastly, Keev wanted to remind Jen Chester about Ben’s line about the dream of becoming a doctor.
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  • Lisa

    Off topic question to Akiva, any chance you and some other rhap podcasters might cover Royal Rumble or Wrestlemania this year? I really enjoyed last years Wrestlemania podcast with you, Alex and AC Mazzaro.

    • akiva wienerkur

      Yes, I think the Royal Rumble pod will happen.

      • David Piques

        Chris Jericho is going to be hanging from the shark cage the whole Rumble match and then come down at the end to win it!

  • Craig

    Another fine episode this week.

    I can tell you that smoking is still a thing in society. Kids pick it up from their parents, and likely start because of them. Smoking to me is one of the stupidest things any millennial can do. There is no benefit to it, it costs a lot of money, and you pretty much can’t do it anywhere.

    I feel so bad for Jackie Chiles in this episode. I mean he does deserve it, but right when you see his face perk up at the prospect of suing big tobacco, you just feel bad because you know it’s going to go badly.

    Question about Jerry’s garbage man theory. If sex is like the garbage pickup, then how does organic sorting come into play on this?

    I’ll close by saying I checked out Akiva and his frenemy Chester’s podcast for the first time. I did not think it was as big of an operation as it is. I’ll have to listen to some more often. The HOF podcast was ok, but it didn’t have enough Tim Raines talk. As a big Expos fan, I am extatic about him going into the Hall. If Gary Carter was the face of the Expos, Raines is the fabric that is the franchise. He will go in proudly as an Expo, and we as fans have another moment to celebrate that great team.

    Sorry that was a bit off topic, but I am still giddy about it.

    Won’t be sending in questions for next week because I just can’t think of anything good, but I’ll be excited to see what you two pull out of this episode.

  • Suzi!

    We know young people do still smoke by watching Big Brother. In BBOTT you had Jason & Scott smoking. Not sure if anybody else indulged. And I don’t think Scott was a regular smoker because of the strange way he had of doing it. Kind of Bette Davis circa 1945 style.

  • Hornacek

    Rob and Akiva said that Ben wouldn’t be working with dead bodies since he was training to be a doctor, not an undertaker/mortician. But medical students test on cadavers to learn how to perform operations and get used to cutting up bodies.

    Maybe the reason Dr. Ben doesn’t want to help the guy at Monk’s is because if he tries to help and the guy get worse (or dies) they (or his family) could sue him saying that he wasn’t a doctor but was acting like one.