And in this season's final The Children, Won't Someone Think of the Children? plotline ... BJ rescues a few lobsters from the Deckers' stash because he's the one Miller child who spends time trying to be the change he wants to see in the world, as opposed to jawboning about how other people should change the world to meet his or her specifications, LAURIE. (There is a truly funny moment when Ricky, trying to be supportive of BJ's new pets, reads aloud, "Lobsters can grow a pound a year ... and they can live to be 40." You just know he's imagining a grown-up BJ hauling around a tank of giant mutant lobsters.) Then there's a sweet goodbye scene between Sam and BJ, where she asks him to hold on to the pendant with her dad's wedding ring, then she kisses him. "I want you to have the pendant," she says. "As long as you promise to come back for it," BJ replies. Where did that boy get his game? Lord knows it wasn't from Bruce. Unfortunately, those CB radios don't actually reach to Naperville, so BJ and Samantha lose touch. And to add insult to injury, Gail has proven herself to be like so many other addicts -- capable of lying to anyone so long as it gets them off her back and leaves her alone to pursue her fix. The final shot in that plotline is of Gail resuming her coke-whore ways, while BJ watches from his room in dismay. A sympathetic Ricky pats BJ on the shoulder when he sees this. Hurrah for Ricky's personal growth!
Back in grown-up plotlines we care about, we see Susan wandering into the one bar in Chicago where all the traders like to hang out. She manages to catch Melinda's eye, and she wanders over. Sensing trouble, the two male traders who were sitting with Melinda flee like rats, and Melinda says, "Why don't I get us a drink?" Susan looks around the bar and we see what she sees -- boisterous traders swapping stories at the top of their lungs and knocking back drinks. When Melinda comes back, she's careful to peel off the blazer so it appears that it's just two ladies having their vodka-and-sodas. Susan opens with, "It's a different world down here, isn't it? All this testosterone and bravado." Melinda concedes that it's sort of a unique subculture. Susan continues, "Not many women get to see men the way you see them -- in their element like this, away from their families." Melinda says, "I suppose you're right." Susan says, "Do you remember, the night we met, you called my husband 'one of the good ones?'" Melinda nods, "I meant it." Susan continues, "You also told me you didn't mind doing certain things to get ahead. Is that what you're doing with my husband -- using him to get ahead?" Melinda seems almost insulted on Bruce's behalf: "Bruce is a smart guy. If that were the case, he'd see right through me." Susan asks, "So it's just something you're doing for fun?" Melinda reveals that she hasn't slept with Bruce, Susan asks, "Then what are you doing?" Melinda sighs a little before explaining, "We're a lot alike, Bruce and I. Both ambitious, analytical -- we like a quick read. We like to take risks --" "With one key difference: Bruce is married. We have children. We have ... history," Susan says. Melinda knows. Susan snaps, "Do you?" Melinda concedes, "Maybe not fully." Susan says, "I hope you do, one day. I hope you know, exactly. Are you in love with him?" Melinda says slowly, "In love? No. But we definitely have a connection. Do you?" "Do I what?" Susan asks. "Do you feel connected to Bruce?" "Did you guys spend a lot of time in the 1970s talking about whether you felt connected to people?" I ask Mabell and Sparky. "I spent a lot of time in the 1970s watching Sesame Street and waiting for your father to come home from sea," Mabell answers as Sparky says, "Oh, yes." Anyway, back on screen, Susan witheringly tells Melinda it's none of her business whether Susan feels connected to Bruce. Melinda says, "I'm sorry. It's just that Bruce told me he doesn't feel like you get him lately." Susan decides she has to go. Melinda looks like she's finally rethinking that whole getting-involved-with-a-married-man thing.