Panel 2: Is he retired now? Without monthly letters, Lynn is reduced to showing story development in the strip! Anyway, the reason John never used to do the dishes is that Elly flipped out on him if he didn't do everything just. so.
Panel 3: Is this dragging it out until he announces his retirement, or is Elly unable to let a compliment stand, and instead jab at him for all the times he DIDN'T do the dishes?
Panel 4: Yep.
Panel 5: Huh. Well, this is rather sympathetic towards John. Perhaps Rod is being forgiven. ETA: Or perhaps we're going to get a week, or two weeks of "John was an insensitive pig in 1979" strips.