Episode: Hammers and Veils ...
Original Airdate: October 9, 2001
Now that she's really getting married, Lorelai has to start making some decisions. (Like, what length should the veil be and where will she get her wedding dress?) In order to move along the process, Rory decides she will be the one who takes action. She will help her mom find the perfect dress.
At Chilton, Paris and Rory are still on bad terms over the whole Tristan thing. But you'd never know it because Paris is talking a whole lot, namely giving Rory a hard time over some volunteer gig this weekend that entails building a house. Rory can hardly believe that Paris is going to stay mad over such a silly thing, but that's Paris. Next, Rory bumps into Henry, the Korean boy who has the hots for Lane. He's looking for some info on Lane because he hasn't spoken with her in a while. He's called her house, a lot, but Mrs. Kim always answers the phone and you know how that goes. To fix this problem, Rory promises to give Lane Henry's number so that she can call him.
At the Friday night dinner, Rory wants to know when Lorelai is going to tell Emily and Richard about the engagement. Rory threatens that if Lorelai doesn't say anything in two weeks, then she will personally let the cat out of the bag. As for Emily, she's in a super bad mood over the whole not-being-informed-about-the-wedding thing. (She only knows because Sookie accidentally spilled the beans.) Emily insists on rushing everyone through dinner, but Richard interrupts everything so he can speak privately with Rory. Even though he already apologized, he wants her to know that he doesn't want to fight with her anymore.
Back at the table, Emily won't say a word and Lorelai has no idea why. Finally, Lorelai decides to tell her mom the truth. Emily has little to say about the wedding news and then gets up from the table. She clearly will not let Lorelai off the hook that easy. She is Lorelai's mother and deserved to be one of the first people told about such a life-changing event.
In Stars Hollow, Rory tries to make her mom feel better but it's no use. Lorelai regrets not telling her mom right away. The girls head to Luke's for a real meal, and when he hears more wedding news, he isn't exactly comforting because he's not thrilled about the Lorelai and Max wedding marriage in general.
In the morning, Rory heads off to help volunteer for Habitat for Humanity, but not before Lorelai gives her a homemade hammer. (It's not really homemade, but it has pink feathers and rhinestones on it, so Rory can build a really pretty house.) Before Rory can leave, Lane arrives to give Rory her precious belongings (CDs, books, posters, and makeup) for safekeeping until Lane comes back from Korea. She then gives Rory names and phone numbers of her relatives and a list of words spelled phonetically so Rory can rescue Lane if she gets trapped in a foreign land.
As Rory heads off to volunteer, Dean comes by and is totally disappointed that he can't spend the day with his her. She promises to make it up to him tonight, but right now, she's got to go.
At the job site, Rory immediately makes a mistake even before being given a task, a task that requires a hammer. Rory brings out her pretty pink hammer and gets an eyeful from the construction man. After a few seconds of instruction, Rory is put to work. Yet as soon as she starts hammering, Paris comes to tell Rory to vamoose to the cement section. The reason Paris is acting so uptight is because this house building deal is one of the things that will get her into Harvard. (Along with all the other extra-curricular activities that have consumed her life since the age of nine.) When Rory asks when Paris finds the time for fun, the anal-retentive girl explains that she will have plenty of fun after Harvard.
Paris's speech gives Rory a panic attack. Suddenly, being a good student isn't enough. So, when she gets home and Dean wants to have some fun, Rory refuses. She's got a lot to do and she's got to start now. This doesn't sit well with Dean, he's upset that his girlfriend doesn't want to spend time with him. To make things worse, Rory is upset that Dean doesn't understand how important Harvard is to her. So, it's just a few short days since they've gotten back together and they're already having their first big fight.
Back at home Rory is having a breakdown because she doesn't have the skills to be a camp counselor. And the retirement home doesn't need any extra helpers! How can get into Harvard if she can't volunteer anywhere? Lorelai tries to fix the situation and offers to stay home instead of going out with Max, but Rory insists that she's got to figure this out alone.
At dinner with Max, Lorelai doesn't have much of an appetite because there's so much stuff to think about for the wedding. Max tells her about how excited his folks were about the news. Which unfortunately just makes Lorelai feel even worse about her own parents. After another martini, Lorelai starts ranting about Emily and her absolutely ridiculous reaction. On the way home, Max apologizes for bringing up the whole parents thing. He doesn't help matters by trying to defend Emily and Richard or make sense of the whole thing. In fact, it doesn't really matter what Max has to say because Lorelai is on a mission. She directs Max to her parents' house and when he understands what she's doing, he tries desperately to stop her. Lorelai is just too emotional right now. She doesn't care.
When Emily answers the door, Lorelai demands to know why Emily isn't more enthusiastic about her wedding. Why doesn't Emily care about Lorelai? She bursts into tears but Emily isn't falling for it. This is because of the fact that Emily had to find out about the wedding from a complete stranger. Upon hearing that, Lorelai doesn't have much to say at all and just silently walks out. Max, on the other hand, tells Emily that his parents would like to have dinner with her and Richard sometime, and that it was really nice to finally meet her.
Feeling really lousy the next morning, Lorelai arrives at the inn only to find Sookie has created a veritable feast for her surprise-wedding shower. And it's all because there are so many people who want to celebrate this wonderful event with her. Suddenly, Lorelai understands just how Emily found out about the wedding. And she feels pretty bad about it.
At the shower, Lane is the resident DJ even though it's just a few short hours before she leaves for Korea. Max and Lorelai open their gifts and discuss the unfortunate fact that Max will be spending some time in Toronto for a job. She can't believe he's leaving, but she can't go with him either. Besides, doesn't absence make the heart grow fonder?
Meanwhile, Dean arrives at the shower and apologizes to Rory. She's sorry too. He knows he was acting crazy and he loves that she wants to go to Harvard, so he doesn't want to keep her from anything that helps her get in. Rory adds that she wants him to know how important he is to her and he says knows.
Suddenly, Lorelai feels the need to take some time alone. She leaves Max and heads to Luke's diner. It would mean a lot to her if Luke would make an appearance. It's a big night for Lorelai and it feels like Luke should be there.
The party ends as Rory sits in Dean's arms and waves goodbye to Lane as she drives off to the airport, while Lorelai and Max slow dance as Luke sits and watches from the sideline.
The next day, Lorelai stops by Emily's house to get some advice on the kind of veil she should wear. Emily won't budge until Lorelai apologizes. Basically, Lorelai is afraid to tell Emily things because she doesn't always know how her mom will react. Lorelai didn't want to feel bad about this decision, so she waited to reveal it. Emily finally thaws and suggests that Lorelai skip the whole veil thing and go for a tiara. After all, it's what Emily wore to her own wedding.
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