Whoosh. "Granny, it's [Heath]," murmurs Heath lovingly, while gentle and tender music-box-like tunes punctuate the swift cut. "Granny, it was my birthday last week and I still didn't receive my birthday check." Here, my grandmother would hang up and go spend my birthday money on a large cheesecake, eat the whole thing, and send me the empty box. But Heath's granny is a sucker -- she cries. "Oh, no, don't cry, Granny," Heath sweetly coos, as Ron paces frenetically in the background and barks out orders. "I know you forget sometimes. It's okay. There's always next year," Heath says comfortingly. Ron grimaces, pained, and screams, "What are we gonna do?" Heath tenses and hisses, "Dude, I will punch you in the eye!" Ron throws up his hands and groans, "She's worth more to us dead." Heath takes off after him, waving a brandished fist of justice aching to be employed.
Ye Olde Cheating Shoppe. Outside, Lizzie moans that perhaps her bad grade was just punishment for cheating. "Yeah," Rachel agrees. "I can stop whenever I want to. This is just recreation." Inside, Dave is glued to a PlayStation controller. "This move, I call Farewell My Concubine," he says. "I pause, and then I bludgeon. That's what I do! All right!" A knock on the door reveals that he is, in fact, alone and explaining this to no one but the little green men in his head and the Santa in his kitchen. He warmly invites Steve inside to have a pumpkin muffin, but does it without looking away from the television. "Hey, did we rock the Karamazov brothers, or what?" he grins. Uncomfortably, the kids reveal they all got Ds on their papers -- although Lizzie brightly notes she received a C. "Whatever," Rachel dismisses her. "The point is, we paid you $75! We should be getting at least Bs! That's what you promise!" I just noticed Dave has a Macintosh Plus on his coffee table, a primitive Mac that cost $2,000 when my sister started college -- in 1987. Now he could barter it for beef jerky. Dave wants to see his lousy papers. "Redundant, illogical, shallow. God! Horowitz is so tough! He's so tough, he's haunting me," Dave whispers, massaging his cheek. Defiant, he decides, "We're going to fight this. We're going to fight this all the way to the administration." Rachel interrupts that she read the paper he scripted on Jackson Pollock, and it was absolutely terrible. Dave admits he was about to reach level twenty-four on the game, which never happens, so he blew off the papers and made sweet love to his PlayStation controller. I think that, every year, the Sony vs Nintendo battle for console supremacy singlehandedly lowers the national GPA by at least one point. Lizzie demands a refund, but Dave informs her that it's been invested in his gaming system. Just as their protests get louder, Dave agrees to write one paper each free of charge. Lizzie decides to refuse, but weak, weak Rachel muses, "Know what, though, I do have a paper due..." Dave speeds, "Just feed me the rock, and I will put it through the hoop, swoosh, count it, go to the locker room, take a shower. Thumbs up, huh? Can I see it across the board? Thumbs up? Ahh!" Reluctantly, the trio half-heartedly raises some thumbs and resists the urge to shove them somewhere indecent on Dave's body.