The Practice
Liar's Poker

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Who says lawyers are all liars?

Boston. Jimmy checks his watch and plods toward a diner. He enters the restaurant, looks around, and Jeffrey "Coach 'Spanky' Wenchell" Tambor, waves a newspaper at him. The Lump looks confused. He's not expecting a drunken gym teacher. Spanky says with his signature nice-guy smile, "You number 218?" Yes, says the Lump, but he thought he was meeting Freddy. Ah, not to worry, Freddy's got the day off. Spanky sticks his hand out and introduces himself: "I'm Sid Herman." They shake. Jimmy sits. Then, Sid starts in on the "my condolences" speech; apparently, what the Steelers did to Jimmy ought to be against the law, he quips: "Cruel and unusual punishment." Sid rambles on, "Did you see it?" He waves his hand in effacement: "Of course you saw it." Apparently, Jimmy bet five grand on this football game. Damn, that's a lot of money for someone who has never gambled before. Has never talked about gambling. Has remained the pseudo-moral-epicenter of the freaking show. Okay, blah some interception killed him blah. Jimmy holds out a plain yellow envelope with a whack of money inside. He's got seven of the twenty-seven grand he owes Sid. That's right, the bookie's into Jimmy for almost thirty grand. Jimmy'll get him the rest by the end of the week. Sid: "You're two weeks late now." Jimmy's got to get the money from his retirement account, and he's called a cousin to bum some cash from him. Sid interrupts his so-called client: "I've got another idea." Well, Jimmy is a lawyer, and Sid's got a legal problem, and if the Lump provides some legal services, his debt goes away. Ah, Spanky makes him an offer he can't refuse -- heh. Jimmy hesitates: "What sort of legal services?" Well, the bookie's ex-wife is trying to rob him. Will Jimmy take the case? Oh, you know he will; he's too far in over his head not to.

Credits. I would rather be stuck in the Arctic without a parka, about to be attacked by a polar bear and suffering from serious frostbite, than have to listen to this damn theme song.

The Firm Where They Are Flippant About Pain. Lindsay is complaining to Lady Lucy that the coffee is decaffeinated. She can tell when it's decaffeinated. Lucy insists the coffee is regular, and by the way, if Lindsay is complaining so much about it, why doesn't she just go out and buy her own damn coffee. Rebecca interjects some useless comment about trial days and not needing caffeine. So Lindsay calls her a coffee hog, and when Rebecca objects, Lindsay says they might as well hook up an IV. Rebecca insists she takes her share and no more. Who cares? Why bother with the everyday banter? It's just ridiculous. Lucy interrupts their useless conversation and says, "Lindsay, that was Martin Jinks's mother. She's still in Hartford. She couldn't get the day off." Lindsay bitches, "Excuse me? Her son goes on trial for attempted murder and she can't get the day off?" What she's really saying is, "What a self-centered witch, and she's a bad mother to boot." Eugene walks over toward Lindsay's desk: "I thought you were going to plead." Lindsay snaps that her client wouldn't let her. Ellenor chirps, "Don't tell me..." And The Firm has a rousing chorus of, "He's innocent." Really, the comedy has to stop. No, really, it does. Please. Now. Enough. Bobby comes out of his office, looking through some papers. Jimmy decides to show up for work, and Bobby makes some crack about him being late. Jimmy walks up to Rod and says, "Bobby, you got a minute?" Sure, Rod says, and walks back into his office.

The Very Same Office Where Rod Doles Out Advice About Pain. As Jimmy "In Too Deep" Berluti walks through the door, Bobby says, "What's up?" The Lump relates something about one of his cases, then sort of hesitates and looks really uncomfortable. Rod asks if that's all Jimmy wanted to talk to him about, which, of course, it isn't, and the Lump starts explaining that he's got some pro bono work that he really needs to do. Emperor Rod asks quietly, "What's wrong?" Jimmy muddles about the explanation for a bit, but Bobby's not buying it, and finally the Lump spits out that the guy is his bookie. Bobby, instead of screaming, or yelling, or throwing his arms up in anger, scrunches his eyebrows together. Throwing a fit using a facial expression is a new one for Bobby. Jimmy says, "I don't gamble anymore." He's definitely learned his lesson. The Symphony Of Gullible Gamblers rises to the occasion. Bobby asks how much Jimmy owes, and Jimmy tells him. Bobby does some more face acting, this time more of a gasp than anything else, and Jimmy gets up, explaining how the bookie's got him for a good chunk of change. Blah it started small, blah just to make the games more interesting, blah last season was okay, better than okay, blah he started thinking he knew what he was doing blah. Bobby ignores Jimmy's descriptive dance and gets right to the point: "What's the case?" The Lump sits back down and explains that Spanky's ex-wife is suing him for fraud. Spanky won the lottery, and his wife claims he never told her. Bobby: "Lottery? For how much?" Jimmy: "$100,000." Pause. "He says he bought the ticket with segregated funds, the lottery commission is holding all the money until the ownership issues are settled." And anything Jimmy can get for Spanky over seventy comes off of his tab. The Lump insists it's one day's work, two at the most, and Bobby just sits there, looking a mixture of perturbed and genuinely concerned.

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The Practice

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