Episode: Happy Birthday, Baby ...

Original Airdate: April 22, 2003

Rory and Lorelai are at the elder Gilmores' house, waiting for Richard to bring out their supper. He woke up that morning with a craving for a special dish that his grandma used to make him when he was feeling a little sad. It involves cream of mushroom soup, which doesn't sound good to Emily. But, she's happy that Richard's happy, so agrees to take three bites of it before throwing it out.

Once Richard serves it to everyone, Rory decides to make the big announcement about which college she has chosen. First she explains which ones she got into: Harvard, Princeton, and Yale; then tells everyone she's decided on Yale. At first Richard and Emily don't say much and continue eating, like Rory is playing a practical joke on them. Then, after much explanation by the two Lorelais, they finally see that Rory telling the truth, jump up, kiss her and run out of the room to get champagne and call their friends to brag.

At the Independence Inn where Lorelai works, there's an emergency staff meeting. Even Tobin, the night manager, is there. This doesn't make Michel very happy, though. Michel comes up with the idea that maybe until they get the inn up and running again, it could be a temporary Bed and Breakfast. Lorelai and Sookie don't like this idea, until Tobin agrees with Michel. Then they like the idea. Lorelai gets up, and Tobin gives her an early birthday present: a cappuccino candle. He also offers to help out at the Inn during the day.

Back at the Gilmore's house, Rory's writing a list that Lorelai is dictating about what Luke is going to do for his five hours of handyman work that he's giving Lorelai for her birthday. Rory thinks that Lorelai is exploiting the gift, but jumps on the bandwagon and decides to have Luke build her a new bookshelf.

Paris calls and tells Rory that she's finished all of the homework, but she has one more day before she has to go back to school, because her parents are coming home the next day, so Rory suggests she go out and do something wild and fun without thinking. After Rory hangs up, she goes into the kitchen and talks to Lorelai about Birthday Week. Here's how it works: Mudpack Monday, Double Feature Tuesday, Sephora Wednesday, Complimentary Make-over Thursday, and Big Fat Fabulous Friday. Lorelai asks about her party, but Rory tells her that she told everyone not to make a big deal out of her birthday. Lorelai still thinks that Rory is planning something.

Rory leaves, and Richard's secretary calls and tells Lorelai that Richard would like to meet her tomorrow for coffee. Lorelai hears Richard's voice in the background and demands to speak to him. She berates him for using his secretary when he's sitting two feet away from the phone, and asks him what this is about. Richard has something he wants to discuss with her, but refuses to go into it on the phone. She finally agrees to meet him at three the next day.

At Fran's Bakery, Rory is talking to Fran about the final details of Lorelai's birthday cake when Lane comes in and announces there's a glitch in the plan. The world's largest pizza was 122 feet, 8 inches, but the biggest one they can make is 12 feet, so they have to lie to her and tell her it's the biggest. Lane says that the music selection is coming fine, and Rory gives Lane some favors and things to hide at her house. They meet Jess coming out of the video store, and he and Rory argue over video and food choice. Lane leaves after calling them a sweet old couple. Rory tells Jess she's still going Yale because of it's many outstanding features. Jess says it's only 22.8 miles away. Rory thinks it's cute that he looked it up.

Inside Luke's, Taylor is talking to Nicole about a contract with a candy company. He wants to make it harsher. Luke comes over, and Nicole tells him to sit down. Nicole's parents are coming into town, and she wants him to meet them for lunch. It's obvious he doesn't really want to go, but he agrees anyway. Nicole leaves, and then Jess does too, saying he's going to school. Luke walks outside and watches him. Jess walks toward the school, then jogs to his car and drives off.

At Chilton, Madeline and Louise are discussing which colleges they got into when Paris walks in with a bandage on her nose. She got it pierced because Rory told her not to think, just do, and Paris had an allergic reaction to the hoop. Rory starts to apologize when her cell phone rings. It's Pete the pizza guy. There's been a design flaw and he wants to make a second crust as a retaining wall. Rory suggests that he just make the crust thicker. After thinking it over, he agrees. Meanwhile, Paris tells a boy who tried to buy a look at her nose to come back when he has a twenty.

Lorelai's at home when someone knocks on the kitchen door. On her way to answer it, she sees mallomars on the table, which spell out "Happy Birthday Lorelai." Luke comes in through the back door with his toolbox, ready for five hours of work. He mentions that he's meeting Nicole's parents tomorrow. Lorelai says she thinks it's great. As he's about to head upstairs, Luke tells Lorelai that she was right about Jess: he isn't going to school. After seeing him get into his car, Luke followed him in the truck to Wal-Mart. Luke is going to tell him that he knows what he's been doing.

Outside of Doose's market, Rory has all the sodas for Lorelai's birthday party on a cart which is taller than she is. Jackson comes up to her, and gets really mad that Rory didn't talk to Sookie about the pizza, or Jackson about the vegetables on the pizza. Rory apologizes and Jackson storms off.

Lorelai sitting at a table in a cute little restaurant. She's been waiting for twenty minutes, which equates to two pieces of pie. Richard comes in and sits down with her. He gets right to the point. Apparently, when Lorelai was born, Richard decided to celebrate and so made a real estate investment in her name. Since the government is now building a road right through her investment, he is now giving her $75,000. Lorelai is stunned and calculates that she can buy 150 pairs of Jimmy Choo shoes with it. She stops and asks him if this is some kind of birthday gift, because if it is, it's too much. Richard assures her that he's legally obligated to give her this money.

That evening, Lorelai and Rory are wearing paper Happy Birthday tiaras and eating out of a huge bowl of macaroni and cheese while they discuss what they could do with the money. The phone rings, and Lorelai starts to go get it, but Rory won't let her. Lorelai is convinced the phone call is about her.

Rory takes the phone into her room. It's Pete the pizza guy. They did a Trial run with the pizza, and Kirk has severe cheese burns. He suggests that they elimate the cheese and the sauce from the pizza, because otherwise it's a hazard. Rory tells him that the problem is not the pizza, but Kirk. Pete says fine, he'll include the cheese and the sauce, but Rory will have to provide her own transportation. Lorelai opens Rory's door and asks who was on the phone. Rory tells her that it was Astrid from school.

In Luke's apartment, Jess gets home late. Luke is waiting for him at the table. Luke offers to give him a raise at the diner and help pay for car insurance, so Jess can quit his Wal-Mart job and spend more time on Rory and school. Jess refuses, and Luke tells him he knows what Jess has been doing, or, rather, not doing. Jess is angry that Luke spied on him, and Luke is angry that Jess lied to him. Jess tells Luke that he's going to school enough to get by. Luke reminds Jess of their deal: Jess goes to school and graduates, or he's gone.

Lorelai is at the Inn where Tobin is full of all kinds of good ideas. He's made votive candleholders out of chipped teacups and made a picture frame from the fragments that were too far-gone. Michel is feeling jealous and approaches Lorelai with her birthday present; a journal imported from Spain. Lorelai is amazed because Michel has never given her a birthday present. Tobin then gives Lorelai another present: Joe Strummer's jacket that he wore during the 1979 Pearl Harbor tour. Lorelai is so thrilled that she has a dead band member's jacket that she gives Tobin a big hug, making Michel even angrier. He leaves to run an errand and tells Lorelai to be there when he gets back.

At lunch with Nicole's parents, Nicole and her dad are arguing about surrogate motherhood. Nicole's mother explains to Luke that every time they see each other, they choose a subject and argue until dinner, then call a truce. To involve him in the conversation, Nicole's mother asks Luke about marriage and children. Mr. and Mrs. Leahy gush about how wonderful children are. Luke is so mad at Jess for skipping school that he brings up how Jess broke their agreement, which is a total violation of everything they talked about, and Jess must think he's a moron, but he's not. Mr. and Mrs. Leahy have no idea what he's talking about.

At Pete's Pizzeria, Rory meets Pete, Kirk, and Joe, the pizza delivery guy. Pete has another idea that instead of one huge pizza, they could do a bunch of little pizzas and put pepperonis over the holes, or cheese slices, so it would look like one big pizza. Rory doesn't like this idea, and tells them to get back to the concept of one huge pizza.

Behind the counter at Luke's, Luke is talking to Nicole on the phone. Her parents now think he's insane. But Luke promises that the next time her parents come to town, he will do better. She tells him that they won't be back in town for several months; Luke says that's fine and go ahead and make another lunch date with them right now. Jess tells Luke that he's going to school and leaves. Nicole and Luke are saying goodbye when Jess comes running back in and tells him to get off the phone -- he has to call the police; his car has been stolen. Luke doesn't look too surprised at this news and tells Jess to go to school; he'll take care of the car situation.

It's Friday dinner. Emily, Richard, Rory, and the maids sing "Happy Birthday" to Lorelai. Emily instructs the maid to take the cake back to the kitchen before Lorelai can blow out her candles. As they move into the living room for dessert, Lorelai and Rory whisper about how much time they have left before they have to leave for Lorelai's party. They agree that they have time for cake.

Richard makes a toast to Lorelai on her 36th birthday. She corrects him; it's her 35th. She thanks them for the dinner and the toast and gives Emily an envelope. She tells her that it's what she owes them for Rory's school. Emily is offended. She thinks this is Lorelai's way of getting Emily and Richard out of her life and avoid coming over for Friday dinners. To make matters worse, Richard never told Emily about the investment. Richard is mad that Lorelai told Emily about it, even though he never told her not to. Now everyone is mad at Lorelai, and Emily is mad at Richard. Lorelai tells her that they'll still come over for the occasional Friday night dinner, but Emily says that she doesn't need anyone doing her favors and goes upstairs to bed. Richard follows.

Rory and Lorelai walk through the town square of Stars Hollow. Rory has been quiet and Lorelai tries to reassure her, but turns out Rory is a little mad at Lorelai too. She thinks she could have given them back the money in a better way, if at all. She doesn't know how Lorelai could have done it better, but she's still upset. Lorelai tries to make Rory understand how hard it has been for her to be indebted to her parents for the past three years. She tells Rory not to judge her for repaying a loan that she had told them from the beginning she'd repay, and she will not let Richard, Emily, or even Rory make her feel guilty for doing so. Rory apologizes.

They walk down the street. Lorelai sees a large group of people gathered for her birthday party at Miss Patty's. A crane is lowering the huge pizza onto a table. Rory tells Lorelai that it's the world's biggest pizza. Almost. Lorelai loves it.
Credit: GilmoreGirls.org

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