Spice Girls, Jonas Salk

LORELAI: No, see, Alex and I talked about everything we plan to do and how he expected to dress and how I expected to dress, and we coordinated to the point where I knew each piece of clothing I had to bring, down to the Spice Girls necklace I plan to wear Saturday morning for breakfast because we agreed to keep it a little whimsical.
RORY: So, not your Jonas Salk necklace?

Spice Girls, previously discussed. [Necklace pictured].

Jonas Salk (1914-1995), virologist and medical researcher who developed one of the first polio vaccines.

Biology Terms

TEACHER: The multi-layered membrane systems of the cytoplasm are the smooth endoplasmic reticulum, the rough endoplasmic reticulum, and the Golgi body. Now, the smooth endoplasmic reticulum is concerned with the manufacture of lipid molecules.

Cytoplasm: all of the material within a cell, enclosed by the cell membrane, except for the cell nucleus.

Endoplasmic reticulum: the transportation system of the cell, and has many other important functions. It is made up of the rough endoplasmic reticulum and smooth endoplasmic reticulum.

Golgi body (or Golgi apparatus): a sub-unit of most cells, particularly important in processing proteins.

Lipid: a broad group of molecules which includes fats, fatty acids, cholesterol, and fat-soluble vitamins (such as A, D, E, and K).

Alpha Male

LORELAI: Because I’m the leader of the clan, the provider of the household, the alpha male, and the one whose feet just fell asleep so there’s absolutely no chance of movement.

In biology, a dominant high-ranking member of an animal social group is known as an alpha. Alpha male is used as a pseudoscientific slang term for a dominant male. It is has been sharply criticised by scientists as incorrect, and by others for perpetuating damaging stereotypes about masculinity. It has been in use since the early 1990s.


LORELAI: He continued talking and I just sat there thinking about Peter Cutler. How was Peter Cutler? Where was Peter Cutler? Was there any chance that Peter Cutler would appear and kill the man sitting across from me talking about torque?

Torque is the rotational equivalent of linear force in physics an mechanics, and is also known as rotational force. Torque forms part of the basic specification of an engine: the power output of an engine is expressed as its torque multiplied by its rotational speed of the axis.

The fact that torque is a homophone of the word “talk” has led to it often being chosen as the title of columns, blogs, magazines, and TV programs about motoring, or for car enthusiasts.


RORY: [starts applying the purple dye] So have you mentioned dyeing your hair to the band yet? LANE: No, but they’ll be cool with it. They’ve all got tattoos. Dave and Zach have musical themes and Brian’s got Snoopy.

RORY: Poor guy.

LANE: Yeah, but he’s a slamming bass player.

Snoopy, Charlie Brown’s dog in the Peanuts comic strip, previously discussed and frequently mentioned. He is a black and white beagle. Comic strip creator Charles M. Schulz based him on his childhood dog Spike, who was a pointer crossed with an unknown hound – presumed to be a beagle, as Spike looked very beagle-like. The name came from Schulz’s mother, who had said if they ever got another dog, she would have named him Snoopy. In the comic strip, Snoopy has an older brother named Spike who lives in the Californian desert. Snoopy has his own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, and is a mascot of the NASA space program.

Note how quick Lane is to defend Brian when Rory says something pitying about him. Lane may have only been in the band for a week or so, but she already feels protective of her band mates.

7 Up, Salad Water

RORY: Oh, a girl told me once that if your scalp is hurting from bleach, drink a 7 Up. It’s something to do with the bubbles.

LANE: The Kim household does not have soft drinks.

RORY: Well, what do you got?

LANE: Something called Salad Water imported from Korea. Believe me, it’s nothing like 7 Up.

7 Up, a lemon-lime flavoured soft drink owned by Dr Pepper, and distributed by Pepsi. It was created by Charles Leiper Grigg in St Louis in 1929, two weeks before the Wall Street stock market crash of that year. Originally called Bib-Label Lithiated Lemon-Lime Soda, it contained lithium citrate, a mood stabiliser used to treat manic states and bipolar disorder. It became 7 Up in 1936, and nobody really knows why that name was chosen – some say that it refers to the seven original ingredients, some that it’s a coded reference to lithium, which has an atomic mass around 7.

7 Up won’t do anything to stop your scalp hurting after bleach (and if it’s the bubbles, wouldn’t any soft drink do the same thing?), but I’ve seen it recommended for stomach ache and the common cold, so there seems to be a lot of belief in it as a folk remedy. I suspect Rory is saying anything to distract Lane, and possibly hoping for a placebo effect.

Salad Water, or Water Salad [pictured], is water flavoured with green salad, produced by Coca-Cola in Japan. I’m not sure why the Kims have imported it from Korea when it’s a Japanese product – perhaps the Korean import-export company imports it from Japan, then exports it to the US.

Quantum Physics, Sanskrit

LANE: So I have to figure out a way to rehearse in Hartford two or three nights a week … And maybe at the same time I’ll attempt to master quantum physics, and throw Sanskrit in there, too.

Quantum Physics: quantum mechanics, a fundamental theory in physics that provides a description of the physical properties of nature at the scale of atom and subatomic particles.

Sanskrit: a classical language of South Asia belonging to the Indo-Aryan branch of languages. It is the sacred language of Hinduism, the language of Hindu philosophy, and of historical texts for Buddhism and Jainism. The word literally means “well-made, perfectly formed”, to suggest pure, carefully prepared sacred texts.

[Picture shows a passage from the Bhagavad Gita in Sanskrit]

Mesozoic Era

DARREN: Jennifer, can you give me the three sub-classes of the Mesozoic Era?

JENNIFER: Triassic, Jurassic, and Cretaceous … Follow-up – what preceded the Mesozoic Era?

DARREN: Paleozoic.

The Mesozoic Era is the second-last era of Earth’s geological history, lasting from 252 to 66 million years ago, and comprising the Triassic, Jurassic, and Cretaceous periods. It is sometimes called the Age of Reptiles of the Age of Conifers, and is characterised by the dominance of dinosaurs, an abundance of conifers and ferns, a hot greenhouse climate, and the tectonic breakup of the supercontinent Pangaea. The name Mesozoic means “middle life” in ancient Greek.

The Paleozoic Era came before the Mesozoic Era, the earliest of the three eras of geological history, with a name meaning “ancient life”. It was a time of dramatic geological, climatic, and evolutionary change, seeing an explosion of new species emerging, and life beginning in the ocean, but transitioning to the land.