All havoc breaks loose when Shirley bays a cuckoo clock for $29 at Bartlet's Department Store. It seems Bartlet's has recently installed a computer to handle all their accounts. When Shirley receives her computerized bill for the clock, it reads $290 instead of $29. She goes down to the store to straighten things out with Mr. Atwater. Atwater apologizes and instructs the computer operator, Tom, to program the 1984-Z to move the decimal point and correct the bill to read $29. (Tom is quite impressed with Laurie.) The decimal point is moved -- the wrong way! Shirley's bill is now $2,900. The computer has sent bad-risk notices to other companies, ruining the Partridge's credit rating. It has also had a collection agency pick up the check from the family's last engagement. Shirley again goes to Bartlet's; things are quite out of hand, While she's seeing the manager, Laurie leads a picket line outside the store. When they arrive home, the collection agency has repossessed all their furniture. More promises from Atwater don't satisfy the kids. They form a conspiracy. While Laurie flirts with Tom and gets him to desert his post at the computer, Danny distracts Atwater and Keith tinkers with the computer. Shirley soon receives a check for $50,000! When Atwater rushes over to get the check back, the Partridges tease him a little but finally return it. When everything is straightened out, Shirley realizes that the cuckoo clock does not work.moreless
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