Last week Paul threw a surprise birthday party for Cathy and was more than surprised when she announced that she has not been happy for the last twenty years.
This episode starts with Cathy teaching Adam how to drive. When Paul pulls up and objects to her teaching him because he is only 14 years old.
At the doctor’s office, Cathy asks Dr. Todd when he is going to propose because she saw an engagement ring on his laptop. She tells him that Paul and she are separated and he feels that as soon as Paul heard the diagnosis, he ran off! She is interested in getting into a clinical trial but because she has had no prior treatment, she does not qualify. Now it seems that she really wants to live.
In her classroom, Cathy found a bottle of pills and asked if the class wanted to claim them. Lenny walks into her classroom and asks her where she got the ecstasy and if there were hers! She asks him if he ever took them and he tells her that is how he paints such beautiful murals.
Paul stops by and calls to Cathy, but she does not answer. He just got a promotion and needed another shirt and tie. As he is in the house, he sees Cathy and Lenny locked in an embrace on the patio chaise.
Sean fixes Marlene up with an eight-two year old friend who is the biggest whoremaster and all he talks about sex and even exposes himself to her in the restaurant. Sean is constantly reprimanding his friend and finally Marlene takes Sean aside and tells him that old people need love too and to stop cock blocking her.
At the dinner celebration with Paul’s colleagues, Paul gets drunk and starts talking out of his mind and tells his friends that he found his wife screwing a black guy. I wonder if he will still be getting that promotion.
At a party Adam has several altercations with both his friends and with Andrea who tries to stick up for him when his friends call him a virgin. She tries to let them know that he is not a virgin and then they ask if he had sex with that cow! He protests and she then gets mad at him. So Adam calls her for a ride home eleven times. She misses all his calls because she is still under the influence of ecstasy and having sex with Lenny. She finally realizes that Adam has been trying to call her and knows that she cannot be doing this.
Meanwhile Adam contacts Paul who is drunk and lets Adam drive. As luck would have it, he gets into an accident and hits a tree. Cathy is summoned to the hospital and calls Dr. Todd on the way. Dr. Todd sees Paul and is disgusted with him because “he left Cathy when she needed him most.” Then Dr. Todd sees Cathy and realizes that she never told him about her cancer. Cathy finds out that Adam will be fine and she sits next to Paul in the hospital waiting room ready to tell him the truth and he interjects with his “I want a divorce” statement and walks out.
Laura Linney as Cathy Jamison, a reserved schoolteacher who finds out she has cancer
Oliver Platt as Paul Jamison, her estranged husband
John Benjamin Hickey as Sean, her “eccentric” brother who chooses to be homeless
Phyllis Somerville as Marlene, Cathy’s grouchy neighbor
Gabriel Basso as Adam, Cathy’s bratty son
Gabourey Sidibe as Andrea, a mean-spirited student who Cathy sees as a challenge
Reid Scott as Dr. Todd, Cathy’s doctor and first cancer patient in his young life