"The Real Paul Anka"
Written and directed by Daniel Palladino

Lorelai calls Rory at her and Logan’s apartment to tell her about a dream she had. In it, she took Paul Anka for a walk - only it wasn’t the dog, it was the real Paul Anka. The dog Paul Anka ran off after something, then wound up in Taylor’s market, where the real Paul Anka was working. Lorelai went to Luke’s apartment for help and found the dog there giving a concert. Back downstairs, the real Paul Anka was sitting on Babette’s lap. The two Paul Ankas went out to the street and faced off, but when they approached each other, there was an explosion, some barking, and then darkness. Of course, that was when Lorelai woke up. She asks if Rory’s heard anything about anything weird happening in a small Connecticut town, or about anything happening to the real Paul Anka. At the diner, Luke tells Cesar that he’ll be fine running the diner while Luke is in Philadelphia (see “I’m OK, You’re OK”). He tries not to jinx Cesar by saying that everything will be fine, but Cesar thinks that Luke is setting him up to fail. Luke asks Lorelai to tell Cesar he’ll do fine, but Lorelai doesn’t want to jinx things either. Kirk offers to run the place, but of course Luke doesn’t like that idea. Lorelai has brought a garment bag for Luke’s nice clothes, but Luke doesn’t think he’ll need any for a field trip with a bunch of 12-year-olds. Cesar starts panicking about the possibility of a flash flood, accusing Luke of not taking the situation seriously. Lorelai sees that Luke is taking Anna’s bag on the trip; she tries to talk him out of it by telling him it’s not sturdy enough, but he doesn’t see the big deal.

Outside the diner, Cesar reconfirms Luke’s itinerary, and Luke tells Lorelai that he’s planning to drop by and see Jess while they’re in Philadelphia. Lorelai tries to calm Cesar down by telling him he’s a great cook - his pancakes are even better than Luke’s. Luke and Lorelai say their goodbyes, Luke finally realizing that he’s about to spend ten days on a bus with a bunch of teenagers. Cesar promises he’ll be fine, and Luke sends him back inside to reclaim his turf, since Kirk has taken over coffee-pouring duties. Luke and April arrive at the meeting point for the field trip and Luke worries that he won’t be able to remember people’s names. April encourages him to use mnemonic devices. Luke meets the other chaperones, introducing himself as “April’s new father.” He gets a detailed itinerary and is happy to see that he can go to bed at 9. At Rory and Logan’s apartment, Rory tells Logan that she was late getting home the night before because she was out studying. He missed his class this morning because his alarm didn’t go off; she admits that she reset the alarm so she could get some extra sleep. She’s obviously still not that thrilled to be back together with him. On the bus, the students sing a song about the periodic elements and a kid named Frank recites the first 300 digits of pi. The others chat about their teachers, and Luke gets into a discussion about baseball with a kid named Freddy. April gets a little embarrassed by their quick connection.

Mrs. Kim brings her wedding dress to the inn, asking her to alter it so Lane can wear it for her wedding. Mrs. Kim even has all of Lane’s measurements written down so she doesn’t have to come see Lorelai for a fitting. After Mrs. Kim leaves, Lorelai looks inside the garment bag and gasps. At the Yale Daily News offices, Paris tells Rory that she needs a little more time to work on an interview she did with a professor (she deleted all the boring answers and now the piece is only 16 words long). Rory asks why she has a jar full of insects on her desk and Paris explains that they’re fruit flies she’s using for a paper on population genetics. Rory tells her to get rid of them but has to give her more time to work on her interview first. Logan shows up and tells Rory that it looks like someone’s already written a piece that he was supposed to have written. She tells him that she wrote it herself because she wasn’t sure he would get his piece in on time. He’s disappointed because he did a lot of work for the article, and she tells him she used that work for her piece. Rory says that she’ll give Logan the byline and that she thought she was doing him a favor by doing the piece for him. Logan complains that everyone knew he was assigned the piece, and now they know it’s been taken away from him. Rory apologizes and he says that they’ll move on. Logan then complains about the fruit flies and Rory tells him that they’re not hurting anyone, and he shouldn’t interrupt Paris while she’s working.

The field-trip participants stop for lunch, giving Luke a chance to practice his mnemonic devices as he passes out food. He chats with April about the math competition (which the group didn’t win) and she tells him she needs to talk to him. She admits that she really likes Freddy (though it takes Luke a little while to understand what she’s trying to say), and she’d like Luke to stop hanging out with him so much. Luke notes that April pays less attention to Freddy than to the other boys, which is, of course, because she likes him. She also spends a lot of time with a guy named Kevin, who she doesn’t actually like at all. Luke decides that he should sit with the other adults instead of with Freddy or April. Rory returns home to find Logan hanging out and drinking with Colin, Finn, and Robert. They’re also planning “the ultimate Life and Death Brigade” event since they’re about to graduate. They’ll be base jumping onto the banks of the San Juan River in Costa Rica, then white-water rafting to a big party. Rory is worried that they’re not being careful enough, and Logan asks if she came home just to ruin their fun. The other guys decide to leave so Rory and Logan can fight over whether or not Rory embarrassed Logan in front of his friends. Logan notes that they’re in the Life and Death Brigade, so their stunts aren’t exactly known for being safe. He chastises Rory for working so much at the paper instead of delegating and actually letting people write their own articles. “Even when we’re together, you’re someplace else,” Logan says, accusing Rory of not forgiving him for sleeping with Honor’s bridesmaids. She doesn’t deny it.

Lane tracks Lorelai down on the street and begs her to destroy her mother’s wedding dress so she doesn’t have to wear it. Lorelai thinks that even though it’s obviously horrible, she’ll be able to alter it so that it’s acceptable. Lorelai suddenly spots her parents and runs off after them, but is interrupted when Lane offers her money to destroy the dress. She tells Lorelai that Richard and Emily have been walking all over town all morning, though she doesn’t know why. Lorelai tells her that in that case, she won’t be ruining the dress. Lane adds that she did see Kirk talking to Emily and Richard while wearing his real estate jacket. Logan packs for his trip, telling Rory that he’ll be out of cell phone range for a few days. She doesn’t seem to care. Lorelai finds Kirk in an old house, where he gives her a dust mask. The house, his first listing, has just about everything imaginable wrong with it, and was even “the recent site of a Wicca convention and a particularly grisly murder-suicide.” Lorelai asks where her parents are and he reluctantly tells her. As Rory finds an interesting piece of mail, Lorelai runs into her parents on the street and pretends to be surprised about their presence in Stars Hollow. They tell her they’re antiquing and she calls their bluff by offering to take them to a shop. They tell her they have an appointment (at an appointment-only shop), so she invites herself along. They finally have to give in, so Lorelai leads the way, telling them that traffic in Stars Hollow is horrible, they’re building a box store that will wipe out local businesses, and the whole town smells. Also, the public health department is always on strike and there’s a nearby meth lab.

In Philadelphia, Jess (last seen in “Let Your Balalaikas Ring Out”) discusses the store he runs with a couple of his coworkers, then sees that Luke has arrived. Jess tells him about the store, which puts out books and displays art. Luke is happy to finally get a copy of Jess’ book. He introduces April to her cousin and she notes that he’s about as talkative as Luke is. Luke confides in Jess that he likes April but feels like she just tolerates him. Lorelai continues leading her parents through town and telling them how horrible it is. Taylor isn’t too happy with her badmouthing his market and even threatens to cite her. Emily quickly takes off, pretending she needs to get something out of the car. In Philadelphia, a poet reads his work and Luke has to ask April if it’s any good. Jess is surprised to see Rory, who received his invitation to come visit and decided to come at the last minute. Rory is equally surprised to see Luke and April, who are about to leave. Rory and April meet for the first time, and Luke admits that Rory is his fiancée’s daughter. Jess gives Luke a copy of his book, which Luke wants to pay for. “It’s what’s owed,” Jess tells him, not allowing him to pay. Luke tells him he’s proud of everything Jess is doing, even if he doesn’t understand all of it. Lorelai takes Richard to the diner, where they find Emily playing cards with a little girl she thinks is April. “And here I was bonding with it!” Emily exclaims. Lorelai tells her she won’t be having any contact with April for a while, which Emily thinks is crazy, since eventually they’re going to be family.

In Philadelphia, Rory rereads Jess’ book, which he tells her he would change all of if he could. She tells him she loves it because it doesn’t remind her of anyone else’s work. She tells him about working at the Yale Daily News, which he’s sure she loves. He notes that she seems a lot happier than she was the last time he saw her, and she tells him she fixed things. He kisses her, but she pulls away and apologizes for coming to see him. “I couldn’t even cheat on him the way he cheated on me,” she laments. Jess gets angry when he realizes that Logan cheated on Rory, and he’s saddened to guess that they’re still together. He tells her he doesn’t deserve this, but she says that she can’t help still being in love with Logan, even after everything he’s done. Rory repeats that she’s sorry for coming, but Jess isn’t. He adds that if it makes her feel better, she can tell Logan she cheated on him with Jess. Back on the bus, Luke passes out pamphlets and gives April her sweater. “My dad’s ridiculously overprotective,” April tells a friend, making Luke smile. Lorelai drinks coffee, studying Lane’s hideous dress, and finally throws the coffee on the dress.

MEMORABLE QUOTES: Kirk: “I could run the place if you want, Luke.”
Luke: “Hmm, let me search down to the very depth of my being to see if there’s even the slightest inclination that I would want that. Nope.”

Cesar: “You know there was a flash flood in El Salvador last night?”
Luke: “No. My Salvadoran paper didn’t come today.”
Cesar: “They didn’t see it coming!”
Luke: “That’s the flash part of ‘flash flood.’”
Cesar: “So what do I do if I see a flash flood coming straight at the diner?”
Luke: “Make sure all the customers have settled up.”

Luke: “Are you old enough to like a boy?”
April: “I’m not sure.”
Luke: “I’ll have to look it up in a book, see whether you’re supposed to like boys yet or not.”

Finn: “Not only the ultimate, but the penultimate!”
Colin: “‘Penultimate’ means next-to-last, Finn. This is the last one.”
Finn: “I thought it meant super-ultimate.”
Robert: “How did you get into Yale?”
Finn: “Slept with a recruiter.”

“I’m sorry, that’s confidential information. In fact, the fact that I was with them was confidential. I’m going to have to ask you to pretend that I haven’t already confirmed that I was with them. Which I wasn’t.” - Kirk

“Don’t worry, when you spray for cockroaches, the bats die too. Usually. At the very least, it knocks the wind out of them so they wind up wobbling on the floor so you can just whack them with a hammer. Nothing we can’t work with.” - Kirk

April: “Your books are really easy to skim.”
Jess: “Thanks. That’ll make a nice blurb.”

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