Carter straightens up at the water fountain and asks a passing Lily whether any of the charts in her arms is "anything good." She starts to tell him about a chest pain case, but Weaver snatches away the paper Lily had been proffering to Carter and tells Lily that Mark is free, and tells Carter, "In order to facilitate your return, we need to implement a few rules...You're to do only minor medical: no trauma, no suturing, no needles, no narcotics, and absolutely no surgical procedures." Carter whines, "Uh, that leaves me with...?" "The chance to practice medicine again," Weaver crisply concludes. Just then, Doris and assorted other paramedics wheel in a Mr. Di Batista, who's strapped to a bed and flailing his arms about, freaking out. Weaver and Luka rush over (uh oh -- say goodnight, Mr. Di Batista...forever), as does Frank the flat-topped desk clerk, who informs Luka, "I know this guy." Luka calls out to the room at large to "stabilize his leg," and Mr. Di Batista strains against his...well, restraints to snarl at Weaver, "Leave me alone, bitch!" "All right, that's it," Weaver snaps, pushing him back down so that a paramedic can secure the patient's head to the bed, using tape. Heh. Weaver nonchalantly crutches back over to Carter at the desk and picks up where she left off: "Once you get back in the swing of things, you can resume a normal schedule and do procedures again, but until then, it's baby steps." She hands him a chart and suggests that he start with Mr. Griffis, who has a gluteal rash. You know, there's nothing -- oh, hold on, there's Robert "Rocket" Romano, who notes, "You know, there's nothing worse than a chapped ass, or so I'm told." Dude, quit stepping on my lines. Romano gracelessly asks Carter, "When did you get out?" Carter says it was a couple of weeks ago. Romano stares at Carter in stony silence for...yep, four full seconds. I don't know why, but I thought that was kind of funny. Carter breaks the deadlock by saying he has a patient, and as he departs, Romano asks Weaver, "So, who's watching the Drugstore Cowboy?" DAMMIT. Again with the stealing my jokes. Weaver reminds Romano that she's the head of the ER, and that Carter is therefore her responsibility. Romano starts to ask her rhetorically whether Carter didn't "develop his addiction under [her] watchful eye," but she cuts him off by asking whether there's something that he needs, and he pretends he just came down to shoot the shit, adding, "Now that I'm down here, perhaps you can tell me what genius replaced all the candy bars in the vending machine with raisins and rice cakes?" "Genius"? More like "devil," if you ask me, and the only devil I've seen around the hospital lately is Rex the Wonder Preemie from last week's episode. Okay, some people have emailed me and others have posted on the boards that they were offended by what they perceived as my insensitivity toward Rex and his mother Regina, a.k.a. "Screamy Mom." But that robot baby was fucking creepy and Regina was fucking annoying, and, lest there was any confusion on the matter, she was a fictional character and "he" was an appliance made to look somewhat like a baby. Follow Carter's example of last season and take a PILL, people. Anyway, Weaver finds it funny that Romano's sole reason for making this visit to the ER was to satisfy a sugar jones, and explains that, as a hospital, County should set a good example by offering healthy snacks. "Healthy snacks"? I know both those words, but that phrase makes no sense to me. ["Nor to me. The words are in English, and yet..." -- Sars] Romano calls her a Nutrition Nazi. She asks if he even took the Hippocratic Oath, and he replies that he had his fingers crossed. Ha. Ha. [crickets] Weaver crutches off, and Chen waylays Romano. He registers her pregnancy and snarks, "Well. I guess I don't have to ask what you've been up to." She lets that go by and says she needs to ask him a favour. He interrupts her, "If it's about taking time off, talk to Weaver. Maternity leave is a topic for those bearing ovaries." Fair enough. But no, she says it's about her parents: "I figured you'd run into them today at the surgical conference --" "I'll say hello," he interrupts (again). (And since he did, I'll take this break to note that this episode is directed by Paris Barclay, the City of Angels co-creator who left that show at the end of its first season in a storm of controversy.) Chen explains, "I haven't told them that I'm pregnant yet, and I'd really appreciate your not saying anything. I want to surprise them." They've arrived at the elevator, where Romano pushes the button and cracks, "How? By going into labour at Sunday dinner?" Ha. Ha. [cough] The elevator dings, and Romano smiles phonily and promises, "Mom's the word." I know the expression is "mum." But he said "mom." I know the difference. Don't send me any emails about it.
Carter is promising Mr. "Ass Rash" Griffis that he won't be much longer (and Mr. Griffis is complaining that he's already been there three hours) when Abby "Lisa" Lockhart wanders in. Carter asks her what she's doing, and she says she's looking for Weaver: "She seems to be under the impression that I'm her own personal temp." Carter tells Lisa that Weaver's next door, and Mr. Griffis sits up and crabs, "Hey, is somebody going to dig this wood out of my butt before it sprouts roots, or what?" Yeah, you'd hate to have him grow a flowering ass (Fraxinus anus) right there in front of you. Although the blue ass (F. buttoculata) is more common in the Midwest. Anyway, Carter asks her to help Mr. Griffis with his fundamental problem (heh), and she is naturally not terribly anxious to get on it and asks why Carter can't do it himself, so he explains that Weaver won't let him use any instruments. Oh, come on. Tweezers? And anyway, unless Mr. Griffis is actually giving birth to splinters through his ass, this really isn't a task within her purview as an OB NURSE. (This paragraph was a special shout-out to any etymologists and/or botanists who might read my recaps. Hi!)