The show began with Howard telling this week's announcer and star of "Heroes," George Takei, that he was able to watch only half of his show last night, which George thought would create "a void" in Howard's life until he finished it.
George then said hello to Artie, who was back in the studio this morning following his absence yesterday due to his "illness." Artie went on to say friends he hadn't spoken to in a long time called him all day yesterday to make sure wasn't "dead" because of all the on-air speculation about why he was out, adding all he wanted to do was "take a Tylenol." Artie then acknowledged he had "a terrible sleep schedule," and Howard noted that that was one of the points he made yesterday while defending Artie's absence as being caused by sickness and not anything more sinister.
When Fred commented that he still felt Artie was back on drugs, Artie replied, "Well, Fred liked Dice's show" – referring to his new VH1 reality show, "Dice Undisputed" – a remark that got Fred laughing and threatening to play it for Dice the next time he was in the studio.
Artie then insisted he was "genuinely sick" and was not on heroin, calling his illness "a bad cold" that he'd had all winter.
Urine Over Your Head
Artie reported he got sick on Saturday and slept all day on Sunday. Artie added at 4 a.m. yesterday he decided he couldn't come into work, but, as he was saying that,
Howard told George to quickly cut off some of Artie's hair, as Dominic Barbara had suggested yesterday, so they could test it to see if Artie was back on drugs.
Artie then said he'd voluntarily give Howard the hair if he wanted it, although he also warned that it would reveal "all the drugs" he'd ever done.
Following clips from "The Tyra Banks Show," where the host and some of her guests talked about how they weren't able to lose weight, only to add "So what!" to the end of their stories, Jessica Hahn called in to say she knew how to cheat on drug tests, and Artie acknowledged he was familiar with those techniques as well.
Howard then claimed he had a source who knew Artie was back on drugs, but that, after some "investigation," he didn't think the person had much on Artie. Howard proceeded to ask Artie to "swear on Grandma Caprio" that he wasn't on drugs, and he did just that.
In fact, Artie added his Grandma Caprio was going through "a rough time" health wise as well, so he didn't think it'd be a good time to promise something on her life if he wasn't telling the truth. As Jessica continued to advise Howard to give Artie a drug test, Artie replied he'd submit to a urine test, but that he didn't want his entire drug history to be revealed, as he feared would happen with a hair test.
While Howard read e-mails, all of them accusing Artie of being back drugs, Robin said she felt Artie's diet was contributing to his ill health, noting, "I'm watching him chow down right now like there was no food in America yesterday."
Howard then asked Artie if he'd be willing to go to rehab for 28 days, and he replied he would, but only so he could "get more sleep."
More Accurate Than They Thought
A listener called in about last night's "Cousin Brucie's Dance Party," saying he couldn't stop laughing because all he could think about as Brucie talked was Howard's impression of him.
This led Howard to launch into his Brucie impersonation, which included remarks about "the fifth Beatle," Murray "the K," as well as how he knew Guglielmo Marconi, the man considered to be the inventor of radio. Robin then said she'd never heard Cousin Bruce prior to him working at SIRIUS, and acknowledged she didn't realize just how right-on Howard's impression of him was.