Cliff asks Donna to describe her efforts related to organizing documents pertinent to the investigation. She says, "Well, I had a plan! I was cute, and peppy, and I always passed my nineteenth-century English Literature midterm, and then this irresistible white-collar crime boy dragged my farm-girl ass away from the path of righteousness and into his web of Presidential fraud and intrigue! I had a plan!" Oh, I'm just being silly. She actually says a lot of dull stuff about what documents were in the boxes and what she did with the documents and who told her to do it and where the storage room was located (which was in the OEOB, and didn't she say at the time that Josh's office was about two hundred feet away? ["Yes." -- Wing Chun] Can that be right?) and that documents were from the campaign and the West Wing. Cliff asks her to clarify which campaign she's talking about; she says, "Bartlet for America." Shecky Greene is still trying to make her laugh: "And how'd you guys do?" Donna's not having it: "We won." Cliff says that others are going to ask her some questions, and then they'll get back to him. Donna says okay and kind of shifts in her seat, releasing some tension, or perhaps to brace for the onslaught. Another guy asks whether she keeps a photo album. She says she doesn't, but then clarifies that she keeps photos, just not in an album. She doesn't keep a scrapbook, either (though she strikes me as the type to do so). He asks whether she keeps letters, notes, or other correspondence. She indicates that she sometimes keep birthday cards, or letters from her father. He asks, "Do you keep a diary?" Without hesitation, she says she doesn't. The guy starts to ask her about gifts, as the camera focuses on Cliff, who interrupts, asking the person recording the deposition to read back the question and answer about whether Donna keeps a diary. As it's read, Cliff looks at Donna closely; she has no reaction. He says okay, and the other guy restates his question: "Do you receive gifts from anyone who is currently working at the White House?" As we go to commercial, I wonder whether she'll mention the book on alpine skiing Josh gave her for Christmas two years ago.
It's raining. It was a lovely day when the First Couple were out on the portico. Will Sawyer is sitting in C.J.'s empty office. Mind you, he's in C.J.'s chair, kind of casually glancing about the various items on her desk (one of which is the goldfish -- Gail lives). He handles a couple of things, the way you'd pick up something in a store that you were only half-interested in. He's not snooping, exactly, but wow...no small amount of chutzpah on this guy's part. Or maybe they have some history, if you know what I'm saying. Which, of course, everyone over the age of seven does. Know what I'm saying, that is. Anyway, C.J. arrives, and brightly says, "How you doing?" He says "Good." C.J.: "You're sitting in my chair." Will: "Didn't have a plaque on it." C.J. smiles. Well, if this guy makes C.J. smile, we like him. C.J. chuckles, "Aw, I've missed you." He gets out of the chair, saying, "Yeah," in that "Yeah, right" way. She says he's been gone three weeks. He says it's been two and half years. C.J.: "Really? So what happened? I thought you were our man in Myanmar." Which, despite my sucking at Geography, I do know was formerly known in the West as Burma. He says he got kicked out. He casually sits in a chair opposite her desk. Putting on some hand cream, C.J. asks, "Will, is there a Third World country you haven't been kicked out of?" He replies, "Hey, I've been kicked out of plenty of industrialized nations, too." C.J. asks why he got kicked out; he says he didn't get kicked out, exactly. Then why'd you say you did? He claims they love him in Myanmar. He also says they put a bounty on his head. C.J. laughs. Well, we like this guy more and more. Anything that elicits Allison Janney's laugh is okay by me. Will, with a complete lack of indignation: "It's not funny. The Myanmarese government is built on narcotic trafficking. Myanmar, Thailand, Laos: I was this close to the story. I had interviews with Peng Jiasheng, Pau Yiakung, Li Zuru...I was tight with narco barons..." C.J.: "Until...?" Will: "The Myanmarese Army..." C.J.: "Put a bounty on your head?" Will confirms her guess. He found out when the State Department came and got him. C.J.: "Wow, that had to be embarrassing in front of your narco baron friends." Hee. He says he's assigned to the White House Press Corps until they can find him a reporting job. C.J., with good humour: "No. No offense taken." She asks why he wanted to see her. He says, "Because you're gorgeous and brilliant and I missed you." No, no. But that would have been good. He's got a quote on which he thought she'd like to comment: "Toby Ziegler says, 'If the President wins re-election, it'll be on the Vice-President's coattails.'" C.J. incredulously repeats the quote, Will confirms it, and C.J. asks whether Toby said it to Will. He says he got it from the person to whom Toby said it. C.J. asks Will to do her a favour and give her a little time to check it out. He gets up to leave, and she asks, "You've been gone two and a half years?" He has. She says it seemed like less than that. He replies, "People lose all track of time and space when I'm not around." C.J. says, "Yeah," in this kind of odd, breathy way. He leaves her office, hesitating for a moment before he figures out which way to go. I just looked up Michael O'Keefe on the IMDb to figure out if I'd ever seen him in anything and was shocked to realize he was Fred on Roseanne! I completely did not recognize him without the longer hair and beard. I quite liked him as Fred. He's a good choice for this role. It's nice to have someone kind of laid-back on the show; most of the staff is always so hopped-up. That reminds me, I'd love to see Laurie Metcalf in a guest role on this show. I think she's really good and very underrated.
Sam's having a meeting with a Congressman's aide, in the Roosevelt Room. Sam is wearing a pale blue polo-neck sweater over a white t-shirt. He says, "It's $30 billion in School Modernization Bonds." Ginger brings in some doughnuts. Sam adds that they're interest-free for school districts: "We're estimating that it will help build and modernize seven thousand schools nationwide. There's another $1.5 billion for urgent repairs targeted to high-need districts." The guy asks, "Like roof repairs?" Sam indicates that it's for all kinds of building infrastructure repairs, and that they think they need the Congressman's vote to get it out of the Appropriations Committee and onto the floor. The aide says the Congressman is down with that, and that he'll be looking for the President's support on a bill he's sponsoring called the Legal Tender Modernization Act, which is aimed at getting rid of the penny. Sam's puzzled. The aide says it would permanently halt production of the penny. Sam would like to know why. It almost seems as if he's never heard of these sort of movements before, which seems unlikely for a big nerd like Sam. He should check out Americans for Common Cents. The aide says, "Last year, the U.S. Mint cut fourteen billion pennies, and shipped them off to the Federal Reserve, which dumped them in our laps. They're worthless." Sam points out, "Well, they're actually worth one cent." The aide replies, "The dollar has a buying power today that the quarter had thirty years ago. The penny's buying power has shrunk to nothing." Sam says that's not true: "You can get yourself a gumball." Is Sam old enough to remember penny candy? The aide says they cost a nickel. Sam: "Really?" I guess he doesn't buy a lot of gumballs. ["Nickel candy deficiency could be the root of a lot of his problems." -- Wing Chun] The aide says he'll need to give his boss a good reason why the White House won't support the bill, if, indeed, they won't s