PRACTICAL INTERIOR DESIGN
Britta, Annie and Shirley were walking side by side down one of Greendale's corridors.
"I'm glad we decided to pick this class in private. If Abed found out again, who knows what would have happened?" Annie said.
"Yeah, last time was a lucky escape," Shirley agreed.
"I really hope this class will help me be more careful with my money," Britta said.
"I think that's a different economics," Annie said in an unsure voice.
They stopped walking and waited at a class room door. Their new class.
"Oh. So what's home economics?" Britta asked.
"It's all about looking after a household. Cooking, cleaning-" Shirley started.
"Woah, slow down, Charlie Brown. I didn't sign up for a class that would just make me take up a misogynistic, out-dated gender role." Britta interrupted, working herself up.
"Yes you did," Annie objected.
"Okay, but I didn't sign up for it intentionally. I just wanted to learn how to not be so stupid with my money."
"Sounds like you should be taking an English class," Shirley teased.
Phoebe Younge stood by the door. A smart looking woman in her mid-thirties, waving hair flowing down to her shoulders. "Don't worry, finance management is covered in the course. And for your information there is more to this class than trying to turn young women into house wives."
"And you are?" Britta asked.
"Your professor," Younge replied.
Professor Younge unlocked the door and walked inside the class, her students following.
"Oh boy," Britta muttered to herself.
Professor Younge stood at the front of the class, writing "Home Economics" and her name on the board.
"Well I might as well drop the class now," Britta quietly said to her friends.
"Why?" Annie asked.
"Come on, you saw how she looked at me out there. She already hates me. I know her type and I have her number, and before I know it we're calling each other. Beep, beep, beep. Hello," she said, pretending to press buttons on an imaginary phone.
"Have you been doing drugs?" Shirley asked with a doubtful look.
Professor Younge turned around, staring at Britta with a cold sharp look. "You, blondie, what's your name?"
"M- Me?" Britta asked sheepishly.
"I'm sorry. I wasn't aware you have body dysmorphia or some other kind of perceptual disorder that means you can't properly judge your own appearance. Do you have blonde hair?"
"Yeah," Britta nervously answered, sinking into her seat.
"And was I looking at you?"
"Then yes I was talking to you! What is your name?" Phoebe yelled as she erupted in anger, her face going tight and red.
The entire class looked worried. Annie was close to tears as she gave her friend a flickering sympathetic look.
"Well, Ms. Perry, would you care to explain why you think it's okay to disrupt my class by talking?"
"It wasn't eve-" Britta started, stopping when Annie nudged her and shook her head. "I'm sorry," she continued as she turned her eyes to the floor.
"I didn't quite catch that. Why don't you stand up and repeat it to the class?"
Britta stood up and carried out the request, making sure to be loud and clear. She then returned to her seat where Shirley rubbed her arm in a comforting manner.
"Good. Now maybe I can get on with teaching this class without being interrupted. Is that okay with you, Britta?"
Britta replied with a smile, trying to sound happy but the façade faded as the short sentence goes on. "Be my guest." She stopped smiling and just looked extremely nervous and uncomfortable. Her eyes quickly flicked back and forth to Annie and Shirley to see if they noticed.
Professor Younge looked at her, disapproving. She moved her attention to the class as a whole. "For those of you who aren't able to read, my name is professor Phoebe Younge. You may call me professor Younge and professor Younge only. This is home economics 101. Over the coming months you will learn the most efficient and effective ways of living essentials. I know some of you will be thinking you already know them, otherwise you'd already be dead, but you are very wrong. And I won't lie, some of you won't make it to the end of the semester." She stopped to look at Garret, walking towards him until she reached his desk. She proceeded to slam her hands down on the desk, making Garrett jump in his seat with a squeal. "You might as well leave now because you don't stand a chance," she said in disgust. Garrett looked around with fear and confusion. "Get out now! You're infecting the rest of us!" she yelled.
Garrett screamed, packing up his books and running out of the room as fast as he could. Annie, Britta and Shirley all looked shocked.
"Your first assignment starts today," Younge continued. "Arrange yourselves into groups of no more than four. Your groups will each be given a room in this school and must decorate it. I will then judge your work and grade it accordingly. Let's see how much you already think you know. Any questions?"
Annie slowly raised her arm. Professor Younge looked at her and nodded. "Do our rooms have to be a specific theme, or can we choose?" Annie asked, scared of what the response would be.
Professor Younge smiled at Annie and answered in a surprisingly soft and calm voice. "Good question. No, you have complete freedom over your room. Supplies will be... supplied, by the school, but you are more than welcome to pick your own, at your own expense."
Annie smiled. Britta looked at her, stunned and wondering what just happened.
Pierce sat alone at the table in the study room. Jeff walked into the room and took his seat.
A few short moments of awkward silence passed before Jeff decided to strike up a conversation. "You're here early."
"Yeah, I started doing that. People keep trying to steal our table."
"Have a good morning?" Jeff asked, not really interested in the answer.
"Not bad. You?"
"Fine," Jeff answered.
The two returned to silence. Pierce looked discontent, he shook his head and leaned forward. "You're a well groomed, handsome man."
"Where is this going?" Jeff asked, quickly becoming uncomfortable.
"You ever shave your balls?"
"Wow. Please tell me I'm having a nightmare."
"I lied just now, I'm not fine. This morning I decide to give myself a trim... down there. Long story short I must have snagged something and bled for half an hour. I need tips."
"You need to seek medical help. And I am not talking to you about this."
"Come on! We're both grown men and comfortable with our sexuality- well I am. You should be able to talk about this kind of thing without it being weird. Hell, when you get to my age you need to drop your pants for a doctor at least once a year, and they do more than just talk about it I'll tell you that."
Jeff had never felt so relieved as when he saw Troy and Abed walk into the study room. They were different than usual, arguing instead of playing like children.
"How can you look me in the eye and say that? It's hilarious," Troy said as he walked into through the doorway.
"Oh thank God," Jeff said as they sat down at the table.
"Jeff, you're a cool guy. What do you think of The Big Bang Theory?" Troy asked.
"It's terrible. It's nothing more than pointless pop culture references, and most of the time they're not even correct. It's like Abed, if he had no idea what he was talking about."
"Thank you," Abed said. "And good job noticing the wrong references, I'm impressed."
"Why don't you ask me?" Pierce asked, clearly annoyed.
"We didn't think you'd know what it was," Abed answered.
"Nonsense. I am a huge fan of that show and would recommend it to anyone."
"See," Troy agreed.
Pierce continued with a smile. "That blonde chick is HOT. And that Indian guy..." he stopped to laugh. "He could say anything and it would make my sides hurt."
Troy looked disappointed. "Alright. We won't watch it any more."
"Abed you surprise me. I thought you of all people would watch probably the biggest sitcom of this time," Jeff said.
"I watch it every week, I just don't enjoy it. Sadly we're in a time when ratings no longer mean quality. Mindless shows like The Big Bang Theory and Two and a Half Men are ratings hits while fantastic shows go unnoticed and get cancelled. Firefly, Arrested Development, The Cape."
"...Yeah," Jeff slowly said, not even sure if The Cape is a real show.
"So what were you guys talking about?" Troy asked.
"I doubt you two would understand," Pierce replied. He then covered his mouth from Troy and spoke quietly to Jeff. "They probably don't even have any."
"I can still hear you. I'm sat right next to you. And any what?" Troy said.
"Puppies. Pierce wants to get a dog to keep him company," Jeff interrupted in a loud voice.
"Oh, what kind?" Abed asked.
"A living one," Pierce answered bluntly.
"Cool. Cool, cool, cool."
Pierce once again covered his mouth and spoke to Jeff. "We all know his kind eat them."
"We can still hear you." Troy said, slightly annoyed.
Annie, Britta and Shirley walked into the study room, clearly troubled.
"You guys saw it too right, it wasn't just in my head?" Britta asked.
"No, I can't believe she feels that's an okay way to behave. I bet the man in charge wouldn't like it," Shirley said as she sat down. Annie and Britta looked at her blankly. "I meant the dean."
"Ah," they both sighed.
"Maybe we should report her," Annie suggested.
"Who are you talking about?" Jeff asked.
"Our new home economics tutor," Britta answered, stopping as Pierce chuckled at home economics. "Professor Younge," she continued in a bitter tone.
"What did she do?" Troy asked, concerned at seeing his girlfriend so down.
"She hates me."
"Understandable," Pierce said, causing Troy to turn and frown at him.
The dean rushed into the room. "Oh good you're in here," he said trying to catch his breath.
"Do you want us for something?" Jeff asked.
"Sadly no, only Britta. I've just spoken to Professor Younge who has filed a complaint about your behaviour in her first lesson. Now, I've known you for three years and know the complaint isn't consistent with your personality so no further action will be taken-" The dean started.
"I didn't even do anything. She's a horrible teacher," Britta butted in.
"I'd be more than happy to formally confirm that statement," Annie said.
"There's no need, I know. After all I had to interview her. She made me cry," the dean replied.
"So you're going to get rid of her, right?" Shirley asked.
The dean started to laugh. "No, I couldn't do that. She scares me too much. But if you can get her to do something extreme then I'm sure the board would have to intervene. Well I'll leave you to your day. Chow!"
"And the level of incompetence has reached a record breaking low," Jeff said as the dean left. He then turned his attention to Britta. "You'll be fine, you just need to find a way to get into her good books."
"I'm glad you just said that," Britta said with a smile.
"Uh-oh," Jeff immediately followed.
"What are you guys doing this weekend?" Britta continued.
"Troy and I were going to see the new Resident Evil movie, then we realised they're all terrible and used the money to book opening night tickets for Dredd 3D instead," Abed explained.
"We thought it'd be best to get them now instead of risking it later, that thing is going to sell out," Troy added. "Why'd you ask?"
"We were wondering if you guys would mind helping us decorate a class room," Annie replied.
"Can't you just do it yourselves?" Jeff asked.
"Don't be silly," Pierce quickly responded with a playful smile.
"We could, but with you three helping we can get it done faster, that way we won't be there all night," Annie said, ignoring Pierces comment as she'd learnt was usually the best option.
"What about me?" Pierce asked, once again feeling left out.
"Well no offense, but last time you tried to decorate you almost died."
"It wasn't the first time or the last," Pierce said like it was something to be proud of.
"Decorating or coming close to death?"
"Would you like to help?" Shirley asked him.
"Eh. I had plans, but since you insist, I'll just reschedule."
"And of course I'll help," Troy said.
"Sure, why not?" Abed agreed.
"Jeff?" Britta asked.
"Well I'd just look like a jerk if I said no now."
"Like that ever stopped you before," Pierce said.
"Shut up, Pierce! At least I'm happy to admit that I'd rather do something enjoyable than volunteer for anything just to slightly curb my desperate loneliness," Jeff said in anger.
"Touchy," Pierce said in fake surprise.
"So you're not helping?" Britta asked.
"Oh I'll be there, and I will hate every second of it. When is it?" Jeff said through his teeth.
"We'll start tonight at six and get it over with." Britta said.
"See you then," Jeff said before standing up and heading to the door.
"But what about..." Annie started, but Jeff was now gone. "Classes?"
"Pfft, amateur. He didn't even slam the door," Pierce said as he leaned back in his seat.
Annie and Shirley headed down a corridor. Annie looked into the window on the door of the dean's office as they passed. She stopped walking. "Hey, while we're here do you wanna pull a prank?" She asked, full of excitement.
Annie tried the door handle and discovered that the door was unlocked. They both crept into the room, turning the lights on as they entered.
"This prank is amazing. He's going to come in here tomorrow and have the creepy feeling that someone was in here. We should go before we get caught," Annie said.
"Aren't we going to do something now that we're here?"
"Do something?" Annie asked. Shirley nodded, looking around the room. "Alright. A prank on a prank. Ah, let's move everything on his desk over an inch, except his stapler."
"Or, how about we fill his drawers full of popcorn?" Shirley suggested.
"Ew. That sounds messy."
"That's kind of the point."
"Let's do it! I'll buy the popcorn later."
"No need, I have some in my car." Annie looked at Shirley with a confused expression. Shirley's face fell. "Don't you look at me like that." She said in a deep, serious voice.
Britta, Jeff, Pierce, Troy and Abed had already started the work. All furniture and equipment had been covered with sheets of transparent plastic. Pierce stood on a ladder.
"Be careful you don't fall," Jeff warned.
"I know how to operate a ladder, dummy. Why are we doing this again?" Pierce replied.
"It's an assignment for class," Britta said.
"Seems to me like they just want free labour," Pierce said.
Troy stood with Britta, opening paint cans. Abed was on the other side of the room, happily looking around as he finished covering the furniture.
"So what colour are we making it?" Troy asked.
"I was thinking about white. Plain and simple. Easy," Britta said.
"Because nothing shows off your creative skills like going with the most sterile colour there is," Jeff said.
"It's a class room, we're not exactly open to a lot of options," Britta replied.
"We could paint it Tron style," Abed suggested with hope.
"I might have a few spare neon lights at my house," Pierce added.
"No!" Britta and Jeff said at the same time.
"I can't believe Pierce has seen Tron," Troy said to himself.
Annie and Shirley walked into the room, giggling quietly.
"Oh good, you're here. How are we going to paint the room? I thought white but Jeff seems to think that's too bland." Britta said.
"I'm just saying, you're being graded on this. You might want to try something more elaborate," Jeff defended.
"I agree, we need to do something more sophisticated," Shirley said.
"Woah, I wouldn't go that far. This is Greendale, there's no sophistication involved," Jeff quickly replied.
"How about a nice, bright floral theme?" Annie asked.
"Ooh, that's nice," Shirley said.
"It's a bit tacky don't you think? We're painting a class room, not a hospital ward," Britta replied.
"I have an idea. I'll get a some paper and sketch it out," Pierce said, scrambling down the ladder and rushing over to a set of drawers.
"This should be good," Jeff said sarcastically. When Pierce returned with a pen and some paper, the group gathered around a table and watched as pierce sketched his idea. "That's actually pretty good," Jeff said in shock.
"Pierce, why have you never mentioned you had skills like this?" Britta asked him.
"Well you know me, too modest for my own good," Pierce answered in complete seriousness.
"Well let's get to it," Annie chirped.
The study group were busy at work. Troy and Abed were stood next to each other painting one of the walls. Music played from one of their iPods that has been connected to speakers.
"Troy and Abed decorating," they both sang.
They stopped painting to do their special handshake.
"Oops, sorry man I just got paint on you," Troy said.
The study group danced around the room to the music.
Shortly after, the study group were in chaos. Panicking and rushing around the room.
"Pierce, I already told you to be careful on that ladder!" Jeff yelled.
A disgruntled Pierce quietly replied in a groaning voice. "I think I'm dying."
Troy and Pierce - now with a bandage around his head - looked in amazement directly at their newly painted wall.
"That's the best thing I've ever seen," Troy said.
"Thanks, I told you it'd be good."
Jeff walked over to them and looked at the wall. "Oh for- Go and look at the plans, and tell me where it says to include a naked woman on the wall. Get rid of it!"
Jeff then went back to his part of the room. Pierce looked at Troy.
"Some people have no appreciation for art," Pierce said.
"Tell me about it," Troy agreed.
Britta walked up and looked at it. "Troy!" she said in an angry voice.
"I'm getting rid of it, I swear," Troy said, scared.
The study group stood in the middle of the room, looking on is awe. They were all covered in paint. The room was now fully transformed. The ceiling and top portion of the wall were pure white. A dark wooden beam going around the room separates it from a light green paint that filled the rest of the walls. The board at the front of the class also has a new frame around it.
"Wow. I can't believe we did this," Troy said.
"Neither can I. You guys are the best, thank you. We're going to pass for sure," Annie said.
"Don't mention it," Pierce said, again completely serious.
"You owe us one. Now I'm going to go home so I can get a good..." Jeff said to the girls as he checked his watch. "Three hours sleep. Wow, I might as well not even bother going home."
"My old dorm room might still be free, you can try that," Abed suggested.
Shirley, Annie, Britta stood in the room, watching nervously as Professor Younge walked around the room, inspecting it and making notes on a clipboard.
Pierce hid outside, occasionally looking in through the window on the door before dropping away again.
"Well?" Annie asked anxiously.
"Impressive. And you did this by yourselves?"
"Of course," Britta said with a smile, trying to hide her fear.
"Then why is "P. Hawethorne" engraved in that border?"
Annie thought for a short moment. "That's our friend, he gave us the wood. That's why his name might be on some of it."
"You said we could get our own supplies," Shirley said.
"Very well. In that case I give the three of you a D."
"What!" Annie asked in horror.
"Minus," Professor Younge continued.
"But you said our work was impressive," Shirley said in confusion.
"On a technical level it is, but there's more to decorating than just putting colour on walls. This is a community college class room, and your style doesn't reflect that."
Pierce burst into the room. "Now listen here, lady. We spent all night busting our balls – figuratively, and possibly literally in my case – to get this finished for what I will just say outright is a ridiculous deadline, and these ladies did a great job. And just because this is a community college doesn't mean the rooms can't look respectable. So go ahead and give them a D, I just want you to know that you get an A in being a bitch, and if you don't start treating people with more respect and kindness, you will grow old and lonely and even more bitter. Good day."
Pierce walked back out of the room. Annie gave him a sweet smile as he walked past them. Professor Younge looked at them in silence.
"As it has now become clear you had outside help, you now fail the assignment," Younge said. They looked shocked and angry. Professor Younge walked up to Britta. "You can expect a word from the dean."
The dean walked into his office humming Daybreak. He put his coat on the rack and sat at his desk. He quickly glanced at his desk before focusing his attention to some papers. He opened his drawer and gasped as he happily took out some popcorn and started eating it. Slowly he stops and his smile turns to confusion as he realises something.
"Did someone move my stapler? I have got to start locking my door."
A man stood at a gas station, filling up his tank with fuel, minding his own business. He was distracted when an almost naked Asian man – Chang, emerged from some bushes, his mouth open and tongue ever so slightly sticking out.
Chang slowly approached the man and handed him a piece of paper reading "My name is Kevin and I have changnesia." The man looked confused while Chang smiles at him innocently.