47-year-old amateur astronomy hound Lyle Meeks is on his way south to Arkansas to collect a $1,500 debt from a shady character who conned him two summers ago at a salesmen’s convention in Elk City.

13-year-old, gun-toting Jo-Jo Bibbs is heading in the same direction on the heels of his 25-year-old girlfriend, who ran off to Ponca City, Oklahoma, with a pimp who stands 4-foot-9 in boots. When Bibbs overhears Meeks’ plans at a bar, he figures he’ll just carjack him—all the way to Oklahoma.

Problems arise when Meeks’ IOU is a bust and the two fall prey to a notorious quack about to be run out of town by his patients.

The other obstacles: Meeks’ cheap, Chinese tires, his will-obsessed mother in nearby Missouri, and lost love Nora, who wants back in Meeks’ life; a Ponca City boarding house full of grifters and oddballs; a knife-throwing midget in spurs; and a tornado blowing in from Kansas that threatens to suck up the whole Panhandle.