The Trailer Park Boys teach us how to hustle
If the Trailer Park Boys are masters of anything, it’s coming up with creative schemes to earn some cash.
In the documentary-style comedy series about the idiotic antics of three trailer park inhabitants, rather than wasting their days away in an office or working the 9-5 grind, Ricky, Julian and Bubbles make their living pulling off illicit scams like siphoning gas, selling dope, or stealing neighbors’ grills and lawn furniture. Every ploy is intended to elevate the fella’s status within the trashy Sunnyvale Trailer Park, although ironically, never intended to help them leave.
In an effort to quit our day jobs and learn how to hustle like the Trailer Park Boys, Rooster spoke with Ricky, Julian, and Bubbles about the best ways to make a quick buck. After all, why work as an accountant when we could make money stealing suitcases off the airport carousel?
During our enlightening conversation, The Trailer Park Boys revealed their favorite scams, best investments, and how to pull one over on the police when they inevitably come to break up the business.
[Left to right: Julian, Bubbles, Ricky]
“We once robbed a bank and became millionaires for 15 minutes,” Julian brags. “But the money got confiscated and we ended up going to jail, so we kinda got screwed on that one.”
Ricky, Julian and Bubbles will often get screwed on their half-baked scams. Without fail, their schemes will land them in jail at the end of every television season. The first episode of the next season, then, features the fellas being released from behind bars with a refreshed optimism for their next petty crime venture. While most efforts have been epic failures, however, some investments have actually proved worthwhile.
“I’ve never bought stocks in the stock market,” Bubbles says, “but my pizza sauce company is an investment that turned out pretty lucrative.” As a firm believer in the mantra, ‘you gotta spend money to make money,’ Bubbles has always thrown his heart, soul, and savings into his honest enterprises.
Before bottling delicious pizza sauce, Bubbles had opened ‘Kitty Land,’ an amusement park for kittens. “It was gonna be a pretty good business until Ricky destroyed it with Garbage Land,” Bubbles says. “Its not great when you open a business and someone opens one with a similar name like Garbage Land right next to it, selling garbage he finds out of the dumpster.”
[Season 6, Episode 3: High Definition Piss Jugs]
“We pulled off a pretty good deal with Snoop Dogg for my energy drink,” Ricky says. The beverage, called 5 Hour De-Energy, was a potent weed drink which Snoop ordered 30,000 bottles of.
“We were also stealing gas and selling it, and that worked out pretty well,” Ricky adds. “The gas doesn’t taste very good, but it’s a pretty good scam.” After siphoning the fuel from nearby cars, different types of gas can be divided into different containers based on the taste, Ricky explains. “Unleaded tastes a little tangy, supreme a little sour, and diesel tastes pretty good.”
[Season 3, Episode 3: If I Can't Smoke and Swear, I'm Fucked]
To keep their hands as clean as possible, the boys will often have someone else do their dirty work. Ricky has employed children in his scams, such as when he made his young daughter and her friends steal neighbors’ barbeques, reasoning that they can’t go to jail as minors.
To convince someone else to do your dirty work, Julian says, “Just tell them to do it. Or use a handgun.” For a lighter approach, Julian suggests, “I find if you pay people in dope it usually works pretty well, too.”
However, Julian, Ricky, and Bubbles won’t ordinarily pay anyone to do their bidding, because Cory and Trevor, the gang’s two dim-witted lackeys, will obediently follow orders free-of-charge.
[Season 2, Episode 3: I've Met Cats And Dogs Smarter Than Trevor And Cory]
When asked if cronies like Cory and Trevor ever help them earn cash, Ricky definitively responds, “No. They usually only screw things up.” After adding that Jacob Collins has since taken over for Trevor, Ricky continues, “They’re not very good at much and they’d probably be in jail or dead if we didn’t look after them and get them to help us. So no, they don’t give us much benefit whatsoever.”
Although the gang may insist on Cory and Trevor’s uselessness, when the police get involved, the lackeys often serve a valuable purpose — taking the fall for Ricky and Julian’s crimes. When it’s impossible to pin the blame on those dummies, though, there are other ways to take care of the police.
“Normal people are smarter than the police, so it’s always possible to keep the upper hand,” Ricky explains. “You just gotta listen to what they say, realize they don’t have anything on you, and get out of it. If you twist their words around and make them look stupid, then they get embarrassed and leave.”
Bubbles claims Ricky is pretty damn good at mentally manipulating the cops. “I’ve seen Ricky pull one over on the police at least 200 times in my life!” he yells excitedly.
[Season 9, Episode 1: Ricky rolls a joint on the hood of a cop car]
While making money may come naturally to the fellas, saving it certainly doesn’t. “I’ll have a piggy bank or I’ll try to put money in a lockbox, but I always end up cutting the lock off,” Ricky says. “I’m not very good at saving money. But I figure, I could be in jail or dead tomorrow so I might as well spend it.”
Besides, the boys admit, some things are worth spending a couple extra bucks on. “I like to spend a few extra dollars on a nice bottle of rum,” Julian says.
“I’ll spend a few extra bucks on underwear. Ladies love the nice underwear,” Ricky says, although his claim sparked a heated argument among the whole gang.
“Ricky, you’ve always stolen your underwear! You’ve never paid for one underpant!” Bubbles shouts.
[Bubbles, Ricky, and Julian]
Knowing how to earn, how to invest, and how to save isn’t easy — but The Trailer Park Boys have been around the block a few times, and have become a goldmine of knowledge on how to get rich quick. To learn how to hustle like Ricky, Julian and Bubbles, the trashy trio’s upcoming live tour, A Fucked Up Evening with the Trailer Park Boys, offers the perfect opportunity.
“People will learn how to hustle,” Bubbles promises. “Anything Julian’s involved in — just pay attention.”
The fellas’ financial scams, their schemes to become kings of Sunnyvale, and their ritual trips to jail are about much more than just money, though. Their misadventures are about friendship, community, and getting by even though the cops and the drunken trailer park supervisor only want to bring you down. As Julian puts it, “I don’t call it hustling, I call it survival.”