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Gilmore Guilt: The Story of My Frail Male Ego and Its Trip to ‘Stars Hollow’



I may not always seem proud of it and sometimes I get a little bit embarrassed when I decide to come clean with people, but regardless, I can’t hide it…I like the show Gilmore Girls.

Previously, over the first few years of my 7 year relationship, Gilmore Girls was nothing more than a mild irritant; A show that my girlfriend would try and bait me into watching regularly as she would bat her lashes and make me half-hearted promises like “you will like it” or “you will like all the pop culture references” in an effort to get me to shut off whatever sporting event I was glued to at the moment.

In an effort to “try” I appeased her a couple of times, attempting to sit through the first episode without any real effort given towards paying attention or absorbing the plot, hoping I could simply coast through one gruesome hour of programming, tell her how much I hated it and never hear about it again.

As usual, I was wrong and knowing my lady as well as I do, I should’ve known she would never let it go. Every so often she would attempt to throw the show into the fold, promising I would give it rave reviews as I met her with eye rolls and excuses for why I didn’t like it, knowing full well I hadn’t even really given it a fair shake. I was like a four-year-old sticking his tongue out at the prospect of having to eat broccoli, sometimes getting frustrated enough to raise my voice and declare that getting me to watch it just wasn’t going to happen and just like every other time I say that, she somehow found a way.

One night as we sat in the living room and my attention was halfway on something else, she put the show on without saying a word to me. As I continued to tinker around on the computer, I noticed the show was on the screen and figured “screw it, I have the internet at my fingertips and don’t even have to pay much attention.” As I watched the “Jess-Dean-Rory” love triangle unfolding, I found a common bond in characters like Luke and Lorelai, two characters that belonged together, yet seemingly tried to self-sabotage anything more than a friendship (in a subconscious sense) believing the other didn’t feel same, as they never seemed to find the right “time and place” with one another.

Much like Luke, I am a grumpy individual who doesn’t understand where the world is heading. I too wish public places would omit “free wi-fi” and promote conversation and I am easily frustrated by the little quirks of others as they go about their day-to-day routine.

Like Lorelai, I drink endless amounts of coffee and constantly babble at great length, half of which is simply pop culture jokes and movie lines my brain chose to retain over the years of math classes or school work I shunned in the process. I was sucked into the show, unknowingly at first, but two weeks later, after days and days of binge watching the series on Netflix, I was completely enamored with the series and looked forward to getting off work, going home and watching 4-5 episodes late into the night as I shunned sleep in exchange for Babette’s sexual innuendos and Paris Gellar’s anal retentive nature.

Stars Hollow seemed to be a picture perfect postcard community at first glance, but deep beneath the surface it was much like everywhere else in the world with a more polished finished. The characters were real and you can’t help but feel connected to them, even if it’s someone you dislike and wish would go away. We all know a guy who jumps from job to job like Kirk, We all know an obnoxious Taylor Doose type or had a friend in school with strict, religious parents like Lane. In a small community, it felt like everyone was accounted for. As the series ended, I couldn’t help but feel like the finale was a premature way to end it. Rory gets a job and Luke and Lorelai end up back together, though they never really tell you how it all wraps up. That is why I was super excited when my girlfriend gave me the news that there would be a mini-series to attempt to wrap it all up.

Fast forward to “Black Friday” of this past December; as the rest of the world lined up at big box stores across the country going elbow to elbow over discount televisions and “made in china” stocking stuffers, I was home in my pajamas, sipping coffee, binge watching “Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life” like a teenage girl at a slumber party.

As I sat there pointing in glee at the characters being reintroduced after years away from their “stars hollow” existence, I couldn’t help but wonder what in the hell happened to me. How was this possible? If my friends could see me they would surely be quick to rib me and tear me into pieces. If I had made this compromise what would be next? Scented candles? Flavored lip gloss?  An inevitable trip to an Adele concert? I felt so emasculated that I considered chugging a Bud Light “tallboy” and binge watching the “Lethal Weapon” series instead.

As I looked up at my girlfriend sipping her coffee with a big smile on her face, relishing the time we were spending together, I remembered all of the things I had imparted on her that make me who I am that she tried simply because they are part of me. Things like sporting events and spending hours at the record store both came to mind and I came to the realization that this show (her favorite show) was a part of her, therefore, the fact that I loved it so much made more sense in that moment than I had ever realized.

As you grow older, stupid things like your pride go by the wayside, and just as “Luke Danes”, a grumpy, fictional character fixated on burying his feelings until it was no longer possible, I realized that when it came “Her and I”, I too, was “all in” and it was perfectly okay for me to enjoy the show along with the quality time it allowed us to spend together.

With that in mind, I sipped my coffee, smiled back, and continued enjoying my trip to Stars Hollow and for those of you that are curious… that Adele…Well, she isn’t half bad either.

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