It’s time for another write along with “Friends.” I’m in the mood for one. I’m about to watch episode two “The One Where No One’s Ready” from Season Three. This one first aired on September 26, 1996. I’m going to check my calendar to see what I was doing that day. Right off the bat I know I had just turned 30 about two months before this episode. Looks like I commuted in to Manhattan that day to work in the Marvel Comics Bullpen. I did the prepress on some comic book covers.

I also noted that I went to Pearl Paint that day. It must have been at lunch time. I got $40 worth of paper and $67 worth of gouache paint. I think I was just getting into using gouache right around that time. Coincidentally, just this week, I was just cutting open old dried out tubes of gouache to put them in plastic cubbies. Then I added water to them to revive the paint. I haven’t touched my gouache in decade. A few of those tubes were probably even from 1996.

Before I start the episode I think this is one that annoyed me. It annoyed me because I felt Ross’s pain. I hate it when people are late. I’m considerate enough to plan out my time so that I don’t inconvenience anyone by being late and I expect that in return. It’s basic human manners. It was bad enough when in the episode when Rachel was late by accident but when she started being late on purpose it annoyed me to no end. At least that’s how I remember it. I’ll start the episode now and see how my memory stacks up.

The opening scene is Chandler and Joey being late. The annoyance starts early. Rachel shows up fresh out the shower with her makeup done and Roos thinks she’s close to being ready but she lets him know she’s not. And here comes the theme song. There were some drinking a cup of chicken fat jokes in there too that weren’t particularly funny.

New scene and Ross is nervous about a speech he has to give. That’s right, he has to give a speech and still everyone is giving him a hard time. Phoebe shows up dressed and ready to go. Yay! Now Chandler and Joey fight about who gets to sit in a chair. This plot is going to last the whole episode and is the funniest thing in the show. Or at least it builds to be. Monica shows up and she’s running late. Now some phone answering machine gags. One of the messages is from Monica’s old boyfriend Richard and she falls apart. The boys get a humus stain on Phoebe’s dress ruining her being ready.

This is a long scene. All the friends are in it and it all takes place in the apartment. They’re coming in and out of different doors with different plots and problems. We’ve got Phoebe’s stain, Monica calling Richard and messing with his answering machine, the Joey and Chandler fighting over a seat, and Ross being tortured by it all. I think that’s the whole show. We even break for a commercial and come right back to the apartment.

Monica is now falling apart as she thinks Richard is seeing someone new. Chandler looks good in his tux. He’s ready to go. Except he’s still in a fight with Joey. They have twelve minutes to leave and still the girls aren’t ready. Joey doesn’t want to give up his seat so he takes the chair cushions with him as he goes to change. Ross can’t do anything right as he tries to get Rachel ready.

Joey barges in and he is still not dressed because Chandler took his underwear in retaliation for Joey taking the seat cushions. Joey needs new underwear to wear with his rented tux because at the moment he’s not wearing underwear. This is when the phrase “Going commando” (for going without underwear) entered pop culture. The phrase was everywhere after this episode. Joey says “You hid my clothes and I’m going to do the exact opposite to you” setting up one of the classic gags from this show. Ross and Chandler have no idea what he means and neither did I as a viewer.

Phoebe shoes up with a giant Christmas ribbon covering the stain on her dress. Phoebe’s plot really isn’t especially funny this episode. Ross’s watch stopped and he gets even more stressed. He blows up a little but at Rachel and she reacts by torturing him even more. Monica is still upset and digging herself into more trouble. It’s not funny but it is heartfelt. Chandler has a good Donald Duck observation.

Rachel show up out of her room with sweats on and tells Ross she’s not going to go. She is so high maintenance. Ross is trying to make things better but he can’t. I feel for him.

Joey walks in through the door and we get our payoff. He’s wearing all of Chandler’s clothes. Well, maybe just some of them. He’s got about six shirts on and a bunch of pairs of shorts. It’s a great visual and a classic gag. This episode may annoy me and cause me more stress than any other but this gag makes it worth it. Joey lets Chandler know that he’s going commando in Chandler’s clothes. Heh, heh…

Now we get the climax with Ross trying desperately to make up with Rachel. Joey suggests Ross eat the chicken fat. This is a solid gag but it still doesn’t make me less annoyed with Rachel. Monica is still messing with Richard’s answering machine and it doesn’t go well for her. She looks good in her red dress though. Rachel’s mint green dress looks nice too. But I’m still annoyed with her.

The final credit scene is a solid call back to Chandler’s “You’re sitting in my chair” gag.

Now I’ll hit up and see what was in these DVD episodes but was cut out of the episodes that are in syndication and streaming. They cut out Chandler yelling “Get up!” at Joey a bunch of times. Not missing much there. But they also cut out a good answering machine gag with Rachel’s sister calling. That was a funny moment. They also cut a “Does this match” scene. No great loss. Hey, they cut out Phoebe’s Crazy Straw joke. I liked that one. Then some small bits and bobs that don’t matter. The last thing the cut out was Ross’s Cro-Magnon PI joke from the final scene. I liked that.

So there you go. Another episode of “Friends.” It may be annoying but at least we got a classic Joey moment out of it.