Holy cats, I would totally not blame Trina if she decided never to talk to Susan or Bruce again. In two separate scenes, both of them used her as their crying towel, and then basically said, "Well, it's so easy for you -- you like being a childless whore!" Except Trina's not technically a childless whore -- she's pregnant, and hasn't told Tom yet. She does tell Janet, who is thrilled for her and, thank goodness, the one person who says, "Is it Tom's, isn't it?" Haaaaa. And also, the answer is yes. As Trina says, it looks like they closed their marriage at the right time.
Also in this episode, everything is going well for Janet -- she's kicking ass at work (i.e. telling everyone what to do and loving every minute of it), so Henry recruits her to take over for a drying-out advice columnist. Janet writes up her responses, but balks until later that evening, when she handles a drunken Ricky (more on that below) and Trina's "I'm pregnant" news. Then, she figures she might as well throw her beret in the ring for the job.
And Janet may well need a better-paying job, because her husband's A) considering a job in Cincinati and B) considering an affair with Susan. And by "considering," I mean "spending a lot of time hanging around Susan and beseeching her to have an affair with him." However, Susan takes the high road because she realizes that "bros before hos" works when you, um, reverse the sexes. Alas, Bruce is not taking any high road: when he's faced with the prospect of work-girlfriend Melinda leaving for another firm and Melinda's answer to Bruce is, "Talk me out of this tonight, or lose me forever," Bruce is like, "Let me lie to my wife about why I had to head back into the office." And Susan knows he's lying.
Also, Trina's a little conflicted about being pregnant. It doesn't help when she brings up the topic in a purely hypothetical context with Tom and he's all, "Oh, ho ho! You sure do love your little jokes."
Finally, I thought of the children: Laurie and Doug continue their tedious yet logic-defying romance. This week's inexplicable development is that unemployed philosopher Doug is going to turn down a job at Laurie's school because he values their relationship too much. BJ and Rick have a falling out thanks to Rick's jealousy over Sam. When Rick's agita leads him to tie one on at his mom's party, Janet dispenses some awesome mothering advice and thus gives Ricky what he needs to in order to make nice with BJ. Namely, he gives Sam a CB radio, so that she and BJ can communicate once Sam's shipped off to live with a sober aunt in Naperville. It seems so unfair that the one sweet teen summer romance on this show has to end like this, while Laurie's dull assignation continues indefinitely.
The episode opens with Susan wrapping Janet's birthday present and breaking the news to Bruce that there's a birthday dinner that evening. Displaying his usual graciousness when it comes to the Thompsons, Bruce complains that Janet's a witch for having an annual birthday, and Roger's a mope for being unemployed and unhappy about it. Susan chides Bruce and tells him he and Roger will have plenty to talk about: "Bowling ... the White Sox." Bruce nearly spits out his OJ as he reminds Susan he's a Cubs fan. I find it hard to believe that Susan would not know that. First of all, she's been married to Bruce for a while, and unless she had checked out for all of 1969, she would have probably witnessed him shrieking, crying and mourning as the Cubs collapsed in the back half of the season. Second, Susan lives in Chicago, not San Francisco. Here, any idiot can wear a hat that has the A's logo on one side and the Giants logo on the other, and nobody screams at them to take a side. In Chicago, my mother and her brother got into it at my cousin's wedding reception when Uncle Wrenchy mentioned his love for the White Sox. It was harrowing -- those two can paper over nearly sixty years of political and religious differences, but one mention of the White Sox and my mom's snapping, "What is wrong with you? We grew up on the north side of Chicago!"
Bruce rightfully rebukes Susan that indeed it wouldn't kill her after eighteen years of marriage to remember which team he likes, and he heads out the door.
Speaking of people getting ready for work ... Janet's looking foxy with her work hair and makeup, and in her suit with the paisley blouse. I like it -- I remember reading an interview with the Swingtown costume designer about how Janet's plaids were meant to reflect her love of order and her tendency to see things in black-and-white, and I think the shift toward more organic patterns is a great reflection of the character's arc over this series. Anyway. Janet's oohing over the smiley face Ricky made on some pancakes in honor of her birthday, but alas, her commute's going to be a bitch if she doesn't hop to, so she can't eat his culinary masterpiece. Ricky protests, "It's your birthday. Shouldn't they give you a day off or something?" Oh, how I wish that were workplace law, my lad. Roger shoos Janet away from the mess and tells her it'll be a few weeks before he can get her a present. Janet tells him, "Just land this job today. That'll be present enough for me." We find out that Roger's interviewing to be a safety assessor with a commercial construction firm. Both Ricky and Roger think this job sounds cool; Janet thinks it's cool only so long as Roger gets it, and if he doesn't, "it's time to start pursuing work that's a little more realistic. It's been over a month." Roger only tells her, "I know how long it's been." And I get that he's feeling stifled and unhappy and everything, but jeebus wept, he could avoid conversations like this if he'd just tell Janet what's he's really thinking Anyway.