It's Ross's birthday and they should all do something nice. Nice requires money, which half of the group just doesn't have. They start to feel low because they don't make as much money as the other half of the group. They don't want to bring it up, but couldn't help but doin so after they went to a fancy restaurant. Joey, Pheobe, and Rachel order the cheapest things they can since they cannot afford alot. Then when Ross wants to split the check 6 ways, and then 5, the "charity cases" refuse to pay for the little stuff that they got.
As feeling like a charity case, they refuse to go to a Hooty and the Blowfish concert that Monica, Ross, and Chandler were willing to pay for. Instead, they sit at home and "guess Joey's hands". At the end, Monica get's fired and they forget about their money troubles...except for Joey who asks Chandler for five bucks.