Nathan says cockily, "Yeah, and I'm looking to top that this week." And just like that, Dan crushes the dreams of his sixteen-year-old son: "No, you won't." Nathan's face falls like a hundred-year-old tree in the rainforest -- a pointless kind of destruction. Dan continues, "You want to know why? 'Cause you're not tough enough inside. I got garbage buckets you'll never get 'cause you won't bang down low like I did." Nathan sighs; his air feels heavy because he's doesn't have any more trees protecting him from Dan's pollution. But Dan doesn't notice. He's too busy making his point: "That and your conditioning's for crap." Deb comes in to the kitchen. "I never left the floor during a game." Deb says tiredly, "Hey you guys." Nathan stands up and deadpans, "I'm happy, Mom. Dad loves me." And then he leaves. Deb asks what that was all about, and Dan has the absolute audacity to say, "He was wondering where his mother was." Deb whines, "Aw, don't start, Dan. I'm tired and I'm hungry." He bitches, "Oh, how about we eat first and then we argue." Deb: "How about we just don't argue." Dan says, "How about we just don't eat," and then walks out of the kitchen. Okay, so Dan treats his kid like he's a punching bag, then blames Deb when she's just walked in the door for Nathan's bad mood, and then proceeds to take his frustrations out on her -- wow, Dan's so well-adjusted, if he were a car, I'd drive him around the world. Not.
Nathan's got some very loud punk-like music playing in his bedroom. He tosses a stress ball into the air. He's on the phone with Dim, who answers with a strange, "What's up, holler!" Or something of that nature, to which Nathan replies, "You do know you're white, right?" Heh. Dim whines, "What's wrong with you?" Nathan wants to know if Dim's brother's still dealing because he needs to "tear it up" against Cove City. Dim asks, "So how is getting high going to help?" Nathan's exasperated: "Not weed, performance enhancers." Dim's not convinced it's a good idea, but Nathan pushes him -- he's sure he needs to do this. After he's off the phone, Nathan pitches the stress ball at high speed into a picture sitting amongst his numerous trophies. What's the picture of, you ask? Well, of course, Nathan and his father. I'm disappointed that Nathan feels so much pressure that he's turning to drugs, but then again, he's never been one for making the right choice yet, has he?
Keith and Luke are out having the bachelor's dinner of champions: pizza. Ah, fond memories of my youth growing up without a mom. Keith asks, "So what? Are you going to avoid the café for the next six weeks?" Luke jokes, "Why, you don't like pizza?" Oh, Keith loves pizza, but that's not the parental point. Luke insists, "Don't you find it a bit strange, having Nathan's mom running the café?" Keith admits that yes, it is strange, but he also thinks it's really gutsy of Deb too, because she must be catching a heck of a lot of flack from Dan. He continues, "You know, Luke, you really ought to give her a chance, Deb's okay." Pause. "When she got pregnant in college, her life changed a lot like your mom's did." But why does she stay with Dan? Keith believes it's because she's protecting Nathan. Luke grabs a slice of pizza and puts it on his plate. And that's the end of that conversation. That poor pizza looks like it's been sitting out for about three days; it's so hard, it actually cracked Luke's plate. In the worst contrived way, Brooke seems to also be hanging out at the pizza parlour tonight. She sidles over to Lucas, leans in, and flirts, "Hey handsome, three more chapters and you're all mine." Then she smiles at Keith -- she doesn't say hello or introduce herself to him or anything like that. Man, in terms of manners, these kids need a lesson or two in how to be polite to their elders. ["That seems to be a network-wide thing. If I'd smarted off to 'grown-ups' like WB kids do, I'd be dead now." -- Sars] Keith smiles and asks, "What was that all about?" Luke replies, "Nothing." If Saint Luke weren't "acting," he'd actually be blushing. Keith chides him, "Now I disagree, that was definitely something." Heh. Brooke's a tropical storm that has just been upgraded to a hurricane -- she's a whole lot of power wrapped up in a relatively small package.
Dim's got Nathan's stash all ready for him, except there's no exchanging of money, so I guess they're free? Which is the first time I've ever seen anyone giving away drugs for free anywhere, but whatever -- maybe it means that Dim paid for them so he could insert himself even further up Nathan's ass. Dim hands Nathan a small baggie full of little white bennies. Nathan's wearing a red sweater. Everyone's wearing red this week. Again Dim asks Nathan if he's sure. Again Nathan responds, "Have you met my dad?" You know, the way Dan treats Nathan is really terrible, even approaching This Boy's Life kind of tough, but the kid should also take responsibility for his actions every now and again -- he's a man, he's got balls, he should use them every now again, and I don't mean just dribbling them. Dim explains, "Here's the deal, they're basically amphetamines, steroids on speed or speed on steroids, anyway, you got to be careful, Nate." Whatever gets him "jacked" for Cove City. Dim: "These'll definitely do that." Dim closes his locker: "If you grow breasts, I get first peek." Um, yeah -- good to see that your best friend, your comrade in b-ball arms, is more concerned about the freak of nature side effects of the damn drugs than the fact that Nathan's feeling pressured from his jackass of a father into taking the enhancers in the first place. Holy crap, Dim's an idiot. Nathan opens his own locker, hides the package of pills behind the door, takes out one of the pills, and pops it into his mouth. Let the games begin.