"Ted Koppel’s Big Night Out"
Written by Amy Sherman-Palladino; directed by Jamie Babbit

Lorelai and Rory head to the diner, discussing Jessica Simpson’s latest dumb saying. They arrive to find the place packed and pick a couple of tables to hover over so they can get seats. Minutes later, they succeed, grabbing two small tables to push together. Rory thinks that Luke will be upset over this because he’s hated it every other time they’ve done it. Lorelai disagrees, saying that it was only once. Rory guesses that she’s going to have this argument with Luke until he gets dizzy. The girls make plans for various activities before Rory gets immersed in final exams. When Luke comes to take their orders, Lorelai tries to draw his attention to the fact that they put two tables together, but he doesn’t seem to notice. She finally tells him directly what they did, but he says he only got mad about it once. He says that he’s in a good mood because he finally got someone to help him out around the diner. After he leaves, Rory asks Lorelai for an update on Digger; she says there’s nothing to talk about. She’s still not sure if she wants to go out with him, considering that Richard would flip out and Emily would see it as a personal attack. Rory suddenly realizes that Luke’s new employee is a guy named Brennon, who she went to junior high with and thinks is dumb and gross. He apparently doesn’t remember her. “Your kids will be gorgeous,” Lorelai tells Rory.

Rory, Paris, and Richard eat together in the Yale cafeteria, discussing Richard’s college experiences. Richard brings up the Harvard-Yale game, which Paris already has tickets for, since she wants to create a lot of college memories. Richard invites Rory, since he and Emily always go. A professor named Asher Fleming (Michael York) stops by to chat with Richard; Paris is impressed that Richard knows him because she admires Asher a lot. She wonders if she can get an interview with him for the school paper. Richard introduces the girls to Asher and Paris immediately gushes about him and asks for an interview. He tells her he’ll check his schedule. After he leaves, Paris realized that she should have opened with, “I’m a fan.” Lorelai arrives at home to discover a message from Digger on her answering machine. He officially asks her to dinner and is surprised when she actually calls him back. He tries to woo her with reservations to a fancy restaurant, and she says that she’s tempted but can’t date him. “You find me repulsive,” Digger notes. “No, I don’t, and I wish I did,” Lorelai replies. She asks if he understands where she’s coming from, but he doesn’t. At Friday night dinner, Richard and Emily complain about neighbors who are annoying them with their holiday decorating. Lorelai learns of the plans for the Harvard-Yale game and asks if she can tag along. As Richard and Emily head off to uninvite a friend to make room for her, Rory tells Lorelai that she was trying to save her from having to go. Lorelai doesn’t think the game will last that long.

At the diner, Lorelai complains about football and chastises Rory for not trying harder to get her out of going to the game. They’re up early to head to Yale and Lorelai is so tired that she’s not even sure she put on underwear. She gripes about Brennon, telling Rory that he spilled food on her and how she hates him. Lorelai gives him a complicated order, which he doesn’t write down, and Rory smartly gives him a very simple one. “My odds are way better than yours,” she tells Lorelai. Lane is also unhappy with Brennon, who (not for the first time) has given her a box of donuts instead of bagels. She tells the girls that she wishes Luke had mentioned that he was looking for someone to work for him, since she would love to work there. Apparently the diner is one of the few places Mrs. Kim approves of in town, since there’s no alcohol and it’s near the church and the Kims’ house. Brennon brings Rory her toast and asks Lorelai, “You wanted, uh, something, right?” Lorelai tells Luke that they’re going to the Harvard-Yale game, which surprises him. She encourages him to fire Brennon, but Luke thinks she just needs to get used to him. He isn’t even convinced when Brennon disappears while Luke is giving him a task to do.

The girls head to Yale, still complaining about how early it is, and meet up with Richard and Emily. Emily is upset to see that Lorelai is wearing crimson, Harvard’s color. Lorelai argues that she’s not wearing crimson, she’s wearing red. Her parents ask her why can’t she be more like her Yale-color-clad daughter. Emily makes Lorelai put on her sweater. Richard and Emily are amused when they learn that Rory has brought Fig Newtons. Lorelai is unhappy to hear that the game doesn’t start until 1, but Richard and Emily tell her that there are lots of things to do beforehand. First, they have to visit Dan, Yale’s first mascot, then drink a toast. (Emily and Richard have brought a special, non-alcohol-filled flask for Rory to drink out of.) Lorelai is happy about the booze. Richard joins in with a school cheer, then informs the girls that they’ll be tailgating for lunch. Lorelai wonders if she misheard, thanks to the “fun flask.” In the parking lot, Lorelai tries to latch onto someone with an appealing barbeque. The Gilmores’ tailgate, however, is more elaborate and even more appealing. Later, Richard takes Rory to meet some people and Emily tells Lorelai that he’s really proud of his granddaughter. She asks if the girls have heard from Jess; Lorelai says that they haven’t and Rory seems to be handling things well. Emily asks if there’s anyone special in Lorelai’s life but Lorelai declines to fill her in.

Paris arrives and asks Rory to take a couple of photos of her to remember the day by - one of Yale wins and one if they lose. Rory suggests that she wait until the game’s outcome, but Paris is already so bored, she’s thinking of transferring to Princeton. She wants Rory to take the picture so she can just go home. Rory takes the photos and Paris thanks Richard for introducing her to Asher. A woman named Pennilyn Lott (mentioned in “Let the Games Begin”) approaches and Lorelai realizes that she was Richard’s college sweetheart. She calls Pennilyn her “almost mommy” and asks if she would have let her get a pony. After Pennilyn leaves, Emily blasts Lorelai for speaking to Pennilyn. “Okay, seriously, time for the fun flask,” Lorelai says. Back in Stars Hollow, Luke spots a crowd outside Weston’s Bakery and wonders why everyone is there instead of at the diner. Miss Patty, Kirk, and Gypsy admit that they hate Brennon (Kirk thinks he might be Satan). Luke is upset that after all these years coming to the diner, everyone is stopping just because he’s giving a local kid a chance to make some money. He points out that when he was a kid, Stars Hollow gave him a chance and he turned out fine. He yells that everyone can just stop coming to his place, then heads back to the diner. However, he spots Brennon singing and dancing inside and tells everyone, “Just give me ten minutes.”

Back at Yale, Emily accuses Lorelai of stealing the fun flask and the family gets to see the current Dan. Marty approaches and Rory introduces him to Lorelai (who knows him as naked guy - see “The Hobbit, the Sofa, and Digger Stiles”) and her grandparents. Richard is unimpressed with the story and reveals that he was naked for an entire month his sophomore year. Rory heads off with Marty, who Richard likes. Emily drags Lorelai to the restroom, where Lorelai runs into Pennilyn. Pennilyn mentions that she’s heard that Lorelai is opening an inn. When Lorelai and Emily return to their tailgate and Richard heads off to sing with some Whiffenpoofs, Lorelai notes that Emily is acting like something is wrong. Richard returns and Emily asks him how Pennilyn knew about Lorelai’s inn, since she and Richard only talk to her briefly once a year. Richard admits that he had lunch with her a few months earlier. In fact, they’ve been having lunch once a year since Richard and Emily got married. “So you’ve lied to me for the last 39 years,” Emily notes. Richard tries to convince her that they’re just friends having lunch, but Emily is upset and tells him to leave. Lorelai tries to calm Emily down; Emily blasts her for talking to Pennilyn after Emily told her not to. Emily would rather have stayed in the dark about everything. “You weren’t even supposed to come,” she tells Lorelai. Lorelai calls Digger and tells him she’ll go out to dinner with him.

Lorelai and Digger head to a fancy restaurant, where they spot Ted Koppel. They wind up in a private room, which Lorelai learns that Digger requested. She would like to be out in the regular atmosphere of the restaurant and also feels a little awkward alone with him. Digger suggests that they just leave, so they do. In the car, Lorelai says that she’s not hungry, so Digger says that they’ll try the date another time. She admits that she is hungry and directs Digger to get off at the next exit. They wind up at Taco Barn, but Lorelai doesn’t want to order food if Digger isn’t going to eat. They head to a grocery store, where Digger starts looking for razors until Lorelai tells him that they’re just getting food. They wind up running errands anyway and talking about various foods, including Sno Balls, which Digger has never had. Digger gets them into the back so Lorelai can get a smaller size of chips. They eat outside the store and Lorelai brings out the fun flash. Digger wonders why Lorelai changed her mind about the date, but Lorelai doesn’t really have a reason. Lorelai gets a call from Rory, who tells her that Richard and Emily aren’t talking to each other. She asks for details after the date is over. As Rory heads back to her room, she spots Paris and Asher kissing.

WELCOME TO STARS HOLLOW: Asher

MEMORABLE QUOTES: “You are a honey-tongued devil, aren’t you, Dick?” - Paris to Richard

Paris: “You’re stealing my interview.”
Rory: “No, I’m just making you crazy.”
Paris: “Like that’s hard.”

Brennon: “What would you like?”
Rory: “Rye toast.”
Brennon: “You want that toasted?”
Rory: “Sure, why not?”

Kirk: “Excuse me, can I get a napkin?”
Brennon: “Yeah, sure.” (he pulls one from his pocket and drops it on the table)
Kirk: “Excuse me, can I get a napkin to put my napkin on?”

Luke: “You’re going to the Harvard-Yale game? You know what they do at the Harvard-Yale game?”
Lorelai: “They make babies?”

Lorelai: “Where are they all going? It’s Saturday morning, they should be in bed.”
Rory: “They’re excited about life. It’s a college thing.”
Lorelai: “How come you’re not excited about life?”
Rory: “I find nothing exciting before 11.”

Marty: “I, uh, had an unfortunate experience with a keg and a party and a need to take my clothes off and fall asleep in a hallway.”
Emily: “Oh, my goodness.”
Richard: “I was naked an entire month my sophomore year.”
Rory: “What?”
Lorelai: “Welcome to tonight’s episode of ‘Things I Never Needed to Know About My Father.’”
Richard: “I and a group of like-minded young men decided to protest the new dress code by wearing silk ties and nothing else. We were written up by the dean of admissions and threatened with expulsion. We were also suddenly very popular with the ladies.”
Emily: “Ah, yes. This is exactly the kind of conversation I had hoped we would have with our granddaughter and her friend.”
Richard: “One night in the hallway does not a true naked guy make, my friend.”

Lorelai: “Ooh, I feel so powerful.”
Digger: “Well, you’re holding a knife. Being armed does that to people.”

Rory: “So how was it?”
Lorelai: “It’s still going on.”
Rory: “Really, how dirty.”
Lorelai: “We’re at the West Hills Market drinking booze out of paper cups.”
Rory: “Really, how pathetic.”
Lorelai: “He made sure I got my potato chips.”
Rory: “Really, how confusing.”


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