Michael's compulsive need to give people good news has led him to make a promise to pay the college tuition for a group of third-graders if they graduate from high school. This is bad enough, but the even worse news is that that was ten years ago, and now it's their senior year. So Michael has to go to the school and confess it's not going to happen. It's painful and embarrassing and he ends up footing the bill for one kid's books, in a painful and embarrassing way. But at least he learns that his promise, empty though it was, helped raise the graduation rate. And this in turn helps him appreciate Erin, who apparently he's been hating for a while, unbeknownst to anyone.
Meanwhile, back at the office, Dwight's latest scheme to sabotage Jim is an Employee of the Month program, which Dwight engineers to recognize first Jim and then Pam, triggering a rebellion. It fails to get Jim fired, but it's not a total loss; Dwight ends up scoring a silent partner in his diabolical plan: Ryan Howard. Okay, so it's a total loss. [Still, it's only a matter of time before Toby makes it a trio. An awesome, inept trio. - Zach]
Michael calls Andy into his office to take him to task for his reported pattern of lapsing into baby-talk around the office. Andy protests at first, but then turns it around by saying that some people think Michael's Elvis voice is equally annoying. Not Andy, though, who thinks it's great. "Thank you," Michael drawls in an Elvis voice that makes a liar of Andy. "Thank you a lot." He even returns the compliment with regard to Andy's baby voice. "Thank you, Mistew Ewvis," Andy baby-talks. "You're welcome, behbeh," Michael Elvises. And they didn't even need Toby.
On a different day (you can tell because Andy's wearing a different preppie outfit), Andy bursts into Jim's office to dramatically report that the whole office has a case of the Mondays, calling for an immediate morale transplant. Andy's idea? Employee of the Month. "Every awesome place I've worked had one," he tells Jim, and than talking-heads, "Bear Stearns, Lehman Brothers, AIG, my summer at Enron." Jim says that's not such a bad idea.
Michael has Erin cleaning out his e-mail, and they're both learning something. She's learning that "sent mail" shows what mail has been sent, and he's "learning" that "hackers" have been sending him a lot of "nip slip" alerts. Jim enters, and Michael asks if Jim would still want to be his friend if he did the worst thing ever. "Did you murder someone?" Jim asks. Michael says it's worse than that, and rudely dismisses Erin when she gasps in horror. "I miss Pam," Michael complains. Jim floats the employee of the month idea, and Michael seems to only like the idea inasmuch as he would be eligible for it. Which Jim says neither of them would be, what with being co-managers and all.
In the elevator lobby, Andy and Dwight high-five about what is actually Dwight's idea taking flight. "I just need Andy to think it's his idea so it won't get traced back to me," Dwight THs. "In approximately six hours, Jim will get a phone call from David Wallace. He will be fired."A much larger Pam is asked by Erin to look over an itinerary by Erin. Michael comes in, asking for more inbox help, and Phyllis, looking over Pam's shoulder, asks, "What's Scott's Tots?" Behind them, Stanley cracks up. "Has it really been ten years?" he asks, and in a TH, holds up a news article with the headline, "Local Businessman Pledges College Tuition to Third Graders." The "local businessman" being Michael. Byline: Randy Shemanski, who either actually exists or the prop department has gone even more above and beyond than they did in mocking up this slightly yellowed ten-year-old news article. Sample paragraph: