Episode: A-Tisket, A-Tasket ...
Original Airdate: February 5, 2002
Stars Hollow is in the middle of their annual ďBid-a-BasketĒ fundraiser. The way it works is this: women make baskets and men bid on them. Lorelai thinks itís a completely sexist idea, but Rory is totally into it. Thatís because sheís got a cute boy, aka Dean, who will be the highest bidder. Lorelai, on the other hand, might not have any bidders, or one she wants anyway. While Lorelai shops for baskets, she runs into Patty and discovers that Patty carries a picture of Lorelai in her wallet so that she can flash it around to potential men. Lorelai is horrified at this notion, scolds Patty and promptly takes back the picture. Meanwhile, Rory visits Dean at the store and has a little make-out session in one of the aisles. They are rudely interrupted by Jess, who clearly takes much joy in teasing the happy couple. Dean just canít stand the sight of Jess, but Rory thinks Dean should try not to hate him. Dean, however, just canít bring himself to give Jess a second chance.
At the inn, Lorelai is busy working when she gets a package with papers in it handed to her. The papers are, to her horror, pictures and resumes of three men who Patty believes Lorelai should go out with. Lorelai is mortified, especially since one of them has seen Ghostbusters 124 times. While Lorelai leaves to give Patty forty lashes, Jackson is asking Sookie whether or not he should renew his lease. This question is really just code for ďletís move in together.Ē However, Sookie is totally clueless. She thinks Jackson is speaking literally. So, she tells him to renew his lease. Jackson is utterly disappointed and it shows on his sad, sad face.
At the big Bid-a-Basket day, Lane is totally psyched because sheís arranged to have her very first date with Henry. Of course, sheís lying to her mom but itís all going to be worth it. As Laneís elaborate plan is put into motion (which involves using her cousin as a decoy), Roryís basket is put on the auction block. While Rory assumes that Dean will be the highest bidder, a sudden war breaks out between Dean and Jess. They are going head to head to have lunch with Rory. Jess drives the price up to $90 and Dean is totally pissed because he doesnít have any more money.
Rory is totally flabbergasted and runs to Dean to calm him down. Off in the distance, Jess holds the basket and watches the lovebirds bicker in public. Dean believes that Jess is just doing this to drive him crazy and heís right. Whatís worse is that Jess fully expects to have lunch with Rory. While Dean thinks this idea is preposterous, Rory is ready to do it. She tells Dean that she has to follow the rules and the rules state that whoever buys your basket gets to have lunch with you as well. Dean can hardly believe what heís hearing. He practically begs Rory not to go. But she does and Dean walks away helpless and hurt.
Speaking of hurt feelings, Sookie is dumbfounded when Jackson doesnít bid on her basket at all. Well, he didnít bid on it because she told him to renew his lease. Youíd think Jackson would be straight with Sookie about how he feels and what he wants. He finally comes clean about the fact that he wants to live with Sookie, and she admits that, while sheís thought about it, the whole idea scares the crap out of her. She doesnít want Jackson to get sick of her. He swears it will never happen. And then Jackson gives her a big kiss and goes to reclaim Sookieís basket from Kirk, who bought it for $35.
Now itís time for Lorelaiís basket to go on the block. When she spies three different men bidding on her basket, she knows immediately that Patty is behind it. Thereís only one thing to do now. Grab Luke and make him bid on her basket. Luke is reluctant to even participate in this silly tradition, but Lorelai begs and begs. So Luke relents and buys the basket for $52.50. Thatís pretty darn expensive, considering Lorelai has packed a Pop Tart and Slim Jim lunch. Lorelai doesnít really expect Luke to eat it, does she?
Meanwhile, Rory and Jess stand side by side watching Dean walk away. Jess asks her if sheís going after him. She says no. So the only thing to do now is have lunch.
When Jackson goes to collect Sookieís basket from Kirk, he discovers itís going to be a lot harder than he expected. See, Kirk bought the basket so heís keeping it. Itís that simple. Jackson offers to pay him for it, but still nothing. Kirk refuses to give it up and feels bullied by Jackson. After all, Kirk doesnít have a girlfriend to make him a basket. Itís quite sad. The only thing to make Kirk feel better is if Jackson pays $250 for it. Jackson agrees. Now, thatís what we call love.
Speaking of love, Laneís date is becoming a disaster because the pay phone that Henry was supposed to call on doesnít work. So, she runs to borrow Lorelaiís cell. She dials his digits and finds Henry on the first ring. Unfortunately, it may be too late to have lunch. Lane tries to make it happen, but ultimately itís just too much work. Henry wants to have a normal relationship, one where he can call her and pick her up and have dates without having to sneak around. Besides, prom is coming up, and Henry wants to go with someone and have a normal time. So, he asked someone else. Lane is so upset, she starts crying immediately. When she gets home, Mrs. Kim is furious because she knows something is fishy with Laneís story about lunch. But Lane is pretty upset too. She lost a great guy because her mother is too controlling. Mrs. Kim sends Lane to her room for the rest of the night.
Jess brings Rory to one of his favorite spots in Stars Hollow to have lunch. Before they chow down, Rory wants to know why Jess did what he did. Jess says he didnít intend to do it, but he couldnít help himself. It was just funny. Well, not to Rory. She doesnít want to fight with her boyfriend. Jess goes to eat Roryís lunch and itís completely inedible. Rory tells Jess that Dean wouldíve eaten it. So, Jess takes a bite of something totally gross. As heís chewing, Rory smiles and says Dean never wouldíve fallen for that.
Meanwhile, Jackson and Sookie share her gourmet basket and talk about their recent decision. Suddenly, Jackson has a change of heart. He decides that living together isnít good enough for him. He wants to get married. Sookie can hardly believe here ears. She is totally shocked but says yes immediately.
Lorelai and Luke are now eating burgers and fries because her lunch is so bad. Luke asks Lorelai who she wanted to buy her basket and she responds by saying nobody in particular. Just someone who might be able to give her some home improvements. Thatís not very romantic, now is it? But Luke assures Lorelai that someday sheíll have some great guy buy her basket. Itís a sweet moment that is interrupted by Dean. Heís freaking out over the Rory/Jess thing. Lorelai tries to tell Dean that heís got to trust Rory, but itís not Rory he doesnít trust. Itís Jess. The guy is bad news. He gets in fights at school and thatís when he bothers to show up at all. And itís in Roryís nature to be nice to everyone, thatís who she is. Dean thinks Jess will get Rory in trouble. Ultimately, Lorelai tells Dean that he has to back off and trust that Rory wonít do anything to hurt him. But thatís easier said than done.
Speaking of the unlikely couple, Rory and Jess have abandoned food for books. She thinks he should give Ayn Rand another try while he urges her to cut Ernest Hemingway some slack. Then, Rory wants to know why Jess is so nice to her. He fumbles and tries to avoid the question, suggesting that they go grab a pizza. After a few more tries at getting to the bottom of this lunch, Rory gives up and gets up to go. Jess goes to follow her, but finds a piece of jewelry on the ground (is it the bracelet Dean gave Rory?) and keeps it. Talk about trouble!
When she gets home, Rory is carrying a bag of new books. Lorelai wants to know why she is home so late and who she was with. When she finds out it was Jess, Lorelai looks worried. Why did she get pizza and go book shopping with Jess? Rory defends Jess, saying that Lorelai shouldnít be so quick to judge. Rory is then upset to learn that Lorelai has been talking about this stuff with Dean. She feels like Dean is being totally lame for talking to her mom. And she feels like Lorelai is being unreasonable, especially when Lorelai tells her daughter that sheís young and naÔve. All of the sudden it seems that Rory has become a stupid girl who will let Jess ruin her life. Rory doesnít any part of this conversation and bails, even though Dean is about to arrive to make peace. Rory doesnít care. If Dean comes by, then he can talk to Lorelai, because he seems to prefer that anyway.
At the Friday night dinner, Emily is forced to chatter on and on by herself because Lorelai and Rory arenít talking. Itís totally awkward, and Emily demands to know whatís wrong. Suddenly, Roryís cell rings and Lorelai demands to know who it is. She thinks itís Jess, but itís not. It was Dean. With Jess and Deanís names being bantered about, Emily has no idea whatís really going on. Rory, annoyed, goes into the library to be by herself. She uses Richardís phone and calls Lane. But Lane doesnít want to talk because sheís so upset about Henry. Mrs. Kim tries to talk to her daughter but Lane doesnít want to talk. Too bad. Mrs. Kim busts in and explains that she wants to protect Lane from white boys because they will only hurt her in the end. But Lane reveals that the boy who hurt her is a Korean boy who wants to be a doctor. Mrs. Kim can hardly believe her ears. She wouldíve totally let Lane date Henry if she knew he was Korean. Oh, the humanity!
Meanwhile, Emily thinks Lorelai is doing the right thing by being worried about Rory. She doesnít think Lorelai should back down at all. After all, Roryís judgment canít be trusted. Sheís a young girl who knows nothing. All of the sudden, Lorelai doesnít like what sheís hearing. She doesnít want to be Emily. She trusts Roryís judgment. So, she apologizes for getting a bit spooked. She is still concerned about Jess, but will trust Roryís decision in this matter. She will respect her judgment, as long as Rory promises to be really careful. Fight over.
At home, Rory takes the phone and makes a call in her room. We assume sheís calling Dean, but sheís not. She calls Jess instead. And heís glad she called because heís reading The Fountainhead and needs help figuring it out. Rory promises that if he sticks it out, she will reward him. He likes that idea and heís going to hold her to that promise.
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