Artie claims he NEVER PHYSICALLY had Gary's check. He claims his mother had the check. Yet early in this whole conversation Artie tells Gary: "Listen man...I'm, I'm ashamed I even opened it up thinking it was my mail." Artie later claims he knew the amount of the check because, "I went over [his mother's house] and looked at it" which of course means Artie did physically have the check at some point. Then once again Artie loses track of his previous lies and states his mother opened the check (previously he said he regretted that he had opened the check) , "We were talking on the phone...mom it's me and you...what does Gary make? I had to grill her for a half an hour and finally she told me." So to summarize: *Artie never physically had the check *Artie physically had the check and opened it by mistake. *Artie learned what Gary makes because he went over to see the check at his mother's house. *Artie learned what Gary makes because he forced his mother to tell him over the phone 10 minutes before the Christmas party. See how an addict works?