“You run directly for president”

LANE: We’ll tell her [Lorelai] that we’re meeting Dean for a movie, and then we go to the movie, and then somebody who just happens to be a friend of Dean’s just happens to be there for the same movie, and so we figure that it would be completely rude for us to not ask said person to come sit with us.
RORY: I say to hell with governor, you run directly for president.
LANE: It’s not that bad.

Many US Presidents have been Governor of their state before making the run for the White House, including George W. Bush, former Governor of Texas, who had only recently (from Rory’s perspective) been sworn in as President, on January 20 2001.

In 2001, the last US President to run for President without standing as a state Governor was George Bush Sr. [pictured], who was a Congressman, Ambassador to the UN, Ambassador to China, then Director of Central Intelligence before his successful presidential campaign in 1988 (sworn in 1989).

Rory is saying that Lane’s lying is on a scale that only a politician at the highest level could come up with. Lane understandably tries to downplay that one.

Baked Alaska

LORELAI: Oh! Meringue.
SOOKIE: Yeah, I thought I’d do a variation on a baked Alaska for dessert tonight.

Baked Alaska is a classic American dessert consisting of ice cream in a dish or baking tray which is lined with cake, then the whole thing covered in meringue and quickly browned in the oven. The ice cream won’t melt as the meringue protects it, and the oven is very hot so that cooking time is brief.

According to legend President Thomas Jefferson, earlier mentioned, was the first person to serve Baked Alaska, in 1802. He served a dessert which was warm ice cream in a pastry shell, so not really the same, but shows that the idea of baking ice cream had been around a fair while – and a presidential connection is always a cool thing to have.

The famous Delmenico’s Restaurant in New York City claimed that their chef Charles Ranhofer named the dessert to mark America’s purchase of Alaska from Russia in 1867. The actual dish was probably created some time after the purchase, and Ranhofer called his dessert “Alaska, Florida” to indicate the extremes of heat and cold in the dessert. He published the recipe in 1893.

The first known published recipe for something resembling Baked Alaska is in Mary J.B. Lincoln’s Frozen Dainties in 1888. It seems to be much the same as the modern dish and she calls the dessert Ice-cream en Deguiser (“ice cream dressed up”). Lincoln was the first principal of the Boston Cooking School, so the dish has a distinguished pedigree.

Jefferson Suite

LORELAI: OK, put them [the Ruckers] in the Jefferson suite tonight, move them back to their previously booked room tomorrow, and offer them dinner on the house for the inconvenience.

The suite is named after American statesman Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826), one of the Founding Fathers of the United States, and principal author of The Declaration of Independence. He served as the third President of the United States (1801-1809), and was the second Vice-President under John Adams (1797-1801). It is an appropriate name for a suite at the Independence Inn.

Iran-Contra

LORELAI: I kept information from you … Information that would have come out eventually. Like the Iran-Contra scandal.

The Iran-Contra affair was a political scandal in the United States which took place during the second term of the Reagan Administration. Senior administration officials secretly facilitated the sale of arms to Iran, which was the subject of an arms embargo. They planned to fund the Contras in Nicaragua  through the arms sale, while at the same time negotiating the release of several US hostages held in Lebanon.

Lieutenant Colonel Oliver North [pictured] devised the scheme to fund the Contras, and was convicted in the Iran-Contra scandal in the late 1980s; however all charges against him were dismissed in 1991. Fawn Hall was North’s secretary who testified against him in court and was given immunity from prosecution in exchange for her testimony.