Will and Helen are loading their bags into the car while the kids stand at the curb. Mom tells them to do their homework and get to school, adding, "And I think this goes without saying -- no parties." Kevin assures her, "I've already covered this -- they are very unpopular." Helen: "Oh, good. Uh, really?" Will urges her to get going so they can avoid traffic. She tells them Kevin's in charge. The kids wave, and Luke tells them to enjoy their body treatments as Helen gets in the car. Will closes her door and walks around to his side, saying, "No one's getting wrapped." Helen opens her door and says, "I might." They drive off as Kevin says, "They'll never make it the whole weekend." Luke and Joan exchange glances as Joan says, "Sure they will."
At work, Kevin's in the break room having some tea when Rebecca comes skulking up with an idea: "We take the research piece that you did, and turn it into an essay." I don't think a lot of newspapers really publish "essays" as much as they do "columns" and "pieces" and "articles." I see that word used for magazines much more than for newspapers. Whatever. Kevin wants to know why they would do that. Rebecca explains it's so she can lead with it in the Arts and Entertainment section next Sunday: "I want you to lead with the idea that a teenage boy's sneakers are equivalent to his first car." Kevin: "Whoa...you're talking about me writing a piece, with a byline and everything?" She nods enthusiastically. Kevin protests that he's not a writer. She insists he is. Kevin: "But essay writing? That's, like, the best job. You have staffers elbowing for that." He says he's a fact checker. She says she's offering him an opportunity, and advises him to take it: "I'll handle the infighting." Which should be even more fun once word of their "sexual tension" makes the rounds, if it hasn't already. Good luck with that. She offers to help him with it, and suggests Saturday night. He says it's basketball night. She looks annoyed. Kevin, catching on: "I could...cancel basketball?" Rebecca: "Thank you. We'll start around six when the day shift clocks out."
At school, Joan suggests to Luke that they should pass out fliers. Luke says, "Right, and then Price finds out and shuts us down." Joan doesn't think they can rely on word of mouth: "In case you haven't noticed, we're not cool." Man, your parents are out of town. That's all anybody is going to care about. Luke: "I thought you were cool." Joan says she's not. Luke: "Oh, we're in big trouble then." They're at her locker now, and Grace is at hers, asking, "Are you guys having a party?" They both turn and ask in unison, "What?" Grace says it's all over school: "Big party at the Girardis' house tomorrow night." I like the strip of poster in her locker that says, "Does this look infected to you?" Heh. Joan turns to Luke, who says, "I told Friedman and nobody listens to him." Grace, who's taken off her leather jacket and is wearing a cuter-than-usual shirt with black sleeves and a white torso with red graphics all over it, asks, "So am I invited or what?" Luke: "Of course!" Grace: "I hate parties." Luke says it's a different kind of party. Friedman breezes up and announces, "Latest head count's seventy-five." Joan's horrified: "Seventy-five people?" Friedman: "Were you expecting zoo animals?" Well, in your case...explain the difference. Glynis comes up and exults, "Twenty seniors are confirmed!" Joan's freaking a little and wondering what they're going to serve. Friedman says he heard there was going to be a keg. Glynis: "Possibly...two?" Joan looks at Luke, who says, "Every party needs a keg." The bells rings, and everyone disperses except for Joan and Grace, who's been standing there chomping licorice and listening to this. She asks, "Girardi, you do know what you're getting into?" Joan claims she does. Grace closes her locker and takes off. Joan goes the other way and runs into Adam: "Yo, Jane...you're having a party?" She laughs that hollow little laugh she has, and says, "Yeah, I guess I am." Adam wonders if he's invited. Joan: "Sure. I want you to come." Adam: "Am I coming as a guy who...knows the girl who's throwing the party...or...?" Joan says maybe they should talk about this later. Price comes wandering up and sticks his face into their space, asking, "Talk about what?" Adam: "Uh, chemistry, yo." He takes off without looking at Joan. Joan leaves, too. Heh -- "chemistry." Nice answer.