We rejoined the gang on an average day at the apartment as Schmidt tried to foist a giant sushi platter on his roommates: “You know you want in on this, man! A little fatty tune, yellow-T, Cali roll, Samurai snack. So scrummy!” Nick wasn’t interested in Schmidt’s random $80 of sushistravaganza, but Schmidt thought Winston would be now that he had a “serious J-O-B,” by which we mean a temp job that apparently involved putting one different size envelope into another.
Indeed, it was a thrilling vocation (“I sometimes touch the frayed end of the power cord just to feel something”) that he had for about 10 seconds until Jess welcomed a gaggle of youths into their home to play hand bells. Their other option, it turns out, was early morning detention. (And one of them was Raven Goodwin! Did this thrill anyone else? Bueller, Bueller?) “I know hand bells aren’t the coolest instrument in the world,” Jess admitted. “They may not even be the fifth coolest,” but it was enough to convince Winston. Add to that Jess’s geektastic ecstasy at his willingness to join the bell choir, which was worth a whole paragraph — and that’s without mentioning her impromptu song: “Winston and me are playing bells every day!” Who’s that girl? It’s Jess!
And so Winston set his sights on the Ensembell with a focus not unlike a cat chasing a laser, though he did wonder, “So why do you do this bell thing, Jess? How do you win?” Jess explained that you won the chance to help these kids, but Winston had already set his eyes on the prize — an all-bell rendition of “Eye of the Tiger”. Jess preferred more traditional fare including “Camptown Races,” but it was Survivor for Winston or nothing at all. After only a few hours, he had named a bell maneuver (formerly known as the “three in hand”) after himself. Jess never stood a chance, what with her homespun bell dancing that resembled a sexless Tawny Kitaen infused with a dash of middle school cheerleader and a touch of broken robot arm.
Long story short, Winston got way too serious about the Ensembell. His attempt to criticize the kids’ poor performance by sounding out “Eye of the Tiger” was particularly amazing: “Pah! Rest. Pah pah-pah! Rest…” And that’s before he downgraded one of the players to Highlights magazines instead of hand bells, insulted another by calling her “WNBA” and saying her playing looked like “she [was] fighting off a shark,” and complimented another by saying, “You didn’t make me want to throw up.” Lamorne Morris’s physical comedy this episode was beyond description, and he even managed to surpass Schmidt with the one-liners. This was his night to shine.
NEXT: Mr. Un-Fix It