Third Times a Charm

RORY: You’ve met him [Todd] twice.
LANE: But the third time’s a charm.

Third times a charm is the American version of the old saying, Third time lucky. It means that if you have failed in your first two attempts, you will probably succeed on the next one.

The origins of the proverb may be ancient, as the sacred power of things in threes is older than the Trinity, and can be found in Celtic magic and even fairy tales; it is a common idea in many cultures around the world.

“Riding a bike”

SOOKIE: What on earth were you thinking?
LORELAI: That I could still skate.
SOOKIE: It’s not like riding a bike you know.

Sookie is referring to the common phrase that a skill that is once learned and never forgotten is “just like riding a bike”.

Opinions vary as to whether ice skating is just like riding a bike – some people say they easily picked it up after decades off the ice, just a little wobbly to begin with. Others find that after a long break from skating, they have no idea how to balance any more and have gone back to beginner status. Sore legs and feet are common, just as Lorelai is experiencing.

“Of the manor born”

LOUISE: Who’s the dish? … He’s not of the manor born, that’s for sure.

Of the manor born means that someone is from an upper class or wealthy family. It is a common mishearing or deliberate pun on To the manner born, which means that someone is familiar from birth with a particular set of customs or behaviours.

The phrase is a quote from William Shakespeare’s Hamlet, which says, “But to my mind, though I am native here / And to the manner born, it is a custom / More honour’d in the breach than the observance.”

Louise likes to make literary quotes to show her intelligence, but she only chooses the most hackneyed, and in this case doesn’t even use it correctly.

Love and War and Snow

The episode’s title is a play on the phrase, “All’s fair in love and war”. It can be found as early as 1579, in the novel Euphues: The Anatomy of Wit by English poet John Lyly, where it states: The rules of fair play do not apply in love and war.

The episode title adds the words “and snow”, to suggest that the usual rules do not apply whenever it snows. As the title suggests, Lorelai will be changing the rules in this episode due to a snowfall.

“How the mighty have fallen”

LORELAI: You’re comparing me to my mother? … I’m Emily Gilmore? My, how the mighty have fallen.

A common expression meaning that those who were once powerful have now been reduced to a lowly status. The idiom comes from the King James version of the Bible, and is first found in Samuel 2 1:19, where it laments, The beauty of Israel is slain upon thy high places: how are the mighty fallen!

Lorelai always prided herself on being a “cool mom”, and now she discovers she’s actually a mother. A mother just like her own mother, Emily. Rory could hardly have said anything more hurtful to her. Bring on the tourniquet, her heart is bleeding.