Prologue: Barney posts the squad's pistol range qualifications. Everyone passes except Fish, who now can't use a gun until he goes back. Barney tells him to practice, which Fish hates because of the cost of bullets. Chano takes a call from someone looking for a Gardeno; Barney says that he's a new detective transferring in from Narcotics. Fish asks to come back later from lunch. Barney asks if he's okay, and he says yes. Wojo complains about no hot water in the building. The detectives ask about Gardeno; Barney tells them that he's a good cop but a loner. Wojo says that they need a plumber more than a new cop; Barney says, 'Maybe he's handy around the house.' A scruffy, sloppily dressed man wearing an earring comes in and introduces himself as Gardeno. Barney introduces himself and the other detectives, who are incredulous over Gardeno's appearance.
Part One: Chano offers to share his desk with Gardeno. He says he has not stuff because Narcotics travels light. Barney tells Nick to get him a locker. Wojo is particularly upset over his appearance. He asks about his earring and Fish says it's an alarm you pull if his beard catches on fire. Barney tells the detectives to give Gardeno some time to adjust. Chano and Fish leave to go on a call. After Wojo gives Gardeno a hard time about his appearance, he goes into Barney's office to ask for a transfer back to Narcotics. Barney tells him that the squad is a team and that teams do the same thing. Gardeno resists, telling Barney that he doesn't want to shave; when Barney asks about the earring, Gardeno says that it's because he's engaged. Barney tells him to shave, put on good clothes, 'break the engagement and report back to me.' Gardeno leaves slamming doors. Later, Liz and Bernice come in to visit their husbands and give them plants. Liz tells Barney that Bernice has decided that Fish doesn't love her anymore. Fish hasn't returned from his call with Chano, so Bernice waits. Chano comes in with a stoner he arrested with posession of a joint, but Fish isn't with him. Bernice asks where Fish is and he says that he was going 'shopping or something.' Bernice starts to worry and Liz offers to take her to lunch to calm her down. The stoner calls Bernice his mother and tells her not to leave. Wojo takes a call about a fight in a bar and leaves with Harris. Gardeno then comes in shaved, dressed in a suit and with no earring; he looks young, which is why he had the beard and sloppy appearance. He says that now when he would try to stop a perp, they would laugh. Barney insists that wouldn't happen, but when Gardeno demonstrates, Yemana laughs.
Part Two: Wojo and Harris bring in Lyman Cooper for drunk and disorderly. He says that a blonde offered to buy him a drink, he says 'How dare you?', then a big man comes over and swings at him and the blonde knocked him off the barstool; he does say that it might have been the other way around. Chano takes a call about a man shooting at his wife; Barney tells him to take Gardeno. As Wojo takes Cooper to the cell, Barney asks about Fish, who hasn't come back. He tells Harris to call Dispatch to see if he called in. Cooper and the stoner talk about different things in the cell. Bernice and Liz come back and find out that Fish hasn't returned. Bernice starts crying thinking about what could have happened to her husband. Fish then comes in smiling. Bernice hugs him, but then she smells perfume and feels oil on him. Fish says he got a massage at the Garden of Eden massage parlor. Bernice asks what kind of a massage he could get there and Wojo says they've busted it three times. Fish asks to use Barney's office, then glares at Wojo. Harris chides him and Wojo says he thought he was there on official business. Liz asks Barney if he sent Fish there; Barney says no, that 'Fish has initiative.' Fish insists that it isn't what Bernice is thinking. He tells he, though, that he can't remember what was masssaged because he fell asleep on the table. When Bernice asks why he didn't ask her to give him a massage, Fish says. 'Haven't I always told you that you rub me the wrong way?' When they come out of the office, she says that things couldn't be better. Fish takes her to the door. Liz asks Barney when he'll be home for dinner; he says the usual time, unless he goes to the Garden of Eden first. Wojo then takes a call from a nearby hospital saying that Chano and Gardeno are both there after a shooting. Everyone starts to leave; Barney tells Harris and Yemana to stay behind. At the hopsital Chano, with his left arm in a sling, tells the others that the woman came out of the apartment screaming and the man had his gun. He says that Gardeno pushed him out of the way(breaking his arm as he fell down the stairs) and took a bullet for him. He says that the bullet went in his hip and out through his backside. He says that if that hadn't happened, he would have gotten the bullet in his forehead and out the back of his head. He then tells Wojo he was wrong about Gardeno. He then wakes up and the other detectives tell him he did good. Wojo says he wants to take him out for a beer 'if he's old enough.' Fish offers him the plant Bernice gave him. After they leave, Gardeno stops Barney and tells him that he still wants the transfer--not because of his appearance, but because he pushed Chano out of the way to get out of there. He says that it was because of a lack of confidence because he didn't have his appearance to fall back on. Barney says that the bullet went in the front; Gardeno tells him that's where it came out. Barney tells him 'Results are what's important, not direction.' He then offers to give Gardeno the plant Liz gave him.
Epilogue: Barney tells Fish that he passed the pistol range test. He says that it was the massage that did it. Barney then tells the others that Gardeno is being transferred back to Narcotics. Chano says he will be happy to hear that because he has a four-day growth of beard and 'he's polished his earring.' Wojo says he doesn't understand why he needs gimmicks because he's good enough without them. Barney asks about his Marine dog tags; he says he wears them for luck. Barney asks about Harris's slave bracelet; he says it belonged to his great-grandfather. Chano says he has a good-luck tattoo under his cast. Fish says he has lucky teeth--because his dentist died before they were half paid for. Barney says that everyone is superstitious but him...then he knocks wood on the desk.