Recap: Mrs. Garrett is gazing lovingly at her new pet parrot Basil, who's repeatedly squawking, "I love you, Edna." When Blair and Jo enter the room and are all, "Wha-at's happening here?", Mrs. Garrett explains that [her now off camera boyfriend] Ted sent Basil as a gift to let her know he's still thinking about her, then stares dreamily into space and calls the noisy parrot a romantic bird.
Andy drops by to inform everyone he's auditioning for the part of Riff in West Side Story. When Tootie warns him that Riff might be too much of an acting stretch for an amateur such as himself, he shrugs and says he really just wants to be close to Mary Beth Keener, who's been cast as Maria. As Blair and Jo coo about what a clever boy he is, Tootie asks him to read a scene so she can see what kind of acting chops he has...and he reads a paragraph in as robotic sounding a voice as possible. Tootie grimaces and gently says he could use some fine tuning, and offers to serve as his acting coach. Andy says he likes the sound of that and tells Tootie it's very nice of her.
After practicing for awhile, Andy's scene reading abilities show no sign of even slight improvement. A dismayed Tootie, who's decked herself out in fugly mannish '80s garb - a baggy man shirt and a loose yellow tie around her collar - tells him he's not remotely convincing as a gang leader, then musses up his hair and urges him to try to use his body to exude toughness. When he continues to deliver his lines in his usual stilted manner, Tootie says she's ready to throw in the towel on coaching him. Andy begs her to pleeeeeease help him be more Riff-like, so she decides to take him to see a Stallone movie and hopes to hell that something useful comes of that.
Mrs. Garrett is getting annoyed by Basil's continuous 'I love you, Edna' squawking and eventually becomes so fed up that she covers his cage with her apron. Tootie and an attitude-filled Andy return from whatever Stallone movie they just went to see, and Andy says he now fully grasps the concept of method acting. Tootie gushes about how proud of him she is for committing to the role, then leaves the room...and once she's out of earshot, Andy waxes on about what a talented, passionate, and emotion-filled gal Tootie is, then breathlessly declares, "I loooove her." Mrs. Garrett points out that there's a pretty significant age difference between them - but he looks unfazed and calls it "a plus" that Tootie brings wisdom to the relationship while he offers the enthusiasm of youth. When Mrs. Garrett tries to get across that he can't possibly expect an actual romantic relationship to develop between the two of them ['cause LOL and ick] - but Andy's like, "I can and I do" and says he has every intention of asking her to the upcoming seventh grade dinner/dance. As he scampers off camera, Blair, Jo, and Natalie lament how painful crushes can be, then assure each other than surely Tootie will let him down easy - just as Tootie breezes in and informs them that she said yes to Andy's invitation. LOL.
After the commercial break, Jo, Blair, and Natalie warn Tootie that Andy thinks she's his lady and that coupling with him, vis-à-vis attending a seventh grade dinner/dance is "a dangerous area". Tootie explains that her plan is to attend the dinner/dance and keep her fingers crossed that Andy has sense enough to realize how out of place a grown woman looks among a bunch of thirteen year olds, then insists that she's more than capable of handling this type of delicate situation.
Andy tries to get Jo interested in helping him choose an after-shave, but she tells him that Blair is much better at this stuff and beats a hasty retreat. Natalie enters the room to relive pleasant memories of past friendships by leafing through her address book (?) ... and while she's doing that, Andy asks her if Tootie has gabbed to her about their upcoming date. Natalie somehow manages to keep a straight face as she tells him that Tootie's definitely looking forward to it, and that she's said he's a great kid - er guy. Andy fishes for more intel by asking if Tootie has ever cracked any jokes about their age/size difference, then says they're always making jabs at each other 'bout that. Natalie takes the bait and is all, "As a matter of fact she has", and tells him that Tootie once cackled about riding her bicycle with him in the basket. A crushed, red-faced Andy heads for the door - just as Tootie enters the room and asks him where he's off to. He stares back at her accusingly and asks, "I'll ride in the basket?" then dejectedly shuffles off...and a sheepish Natalie apologizes to Tootie for unwittingly spilling the beans on her mocking of tiny Andy.
An old woman enters the store to buy some Over Our Heads crap and gushes about the lovely parrot. When she hears it squawk, "I love you, Edna" she gasps, "My name is Edna!" and asks if he's for sale. Mrs. Garrett says that since Basil was a gift from her long-distance boyfriend she'd rather not sell him...but somehow has no problem giving him away to a complete stranger.
Tootie tells Mrs. Garrett she feels shitty about the bicycle basket joke - just as Andy arrives at the store dressed up in a suit and is clutching a corsage. He tells Tootie he's decided to go the age appropriate route and take Mary Beth to the seventh grade dinner/dance, and that he got a part in West Side Story - not as Riff, but as random thug. Tootie congratulates him and wanks him about how he's one of the sweetest people she's ever met, how honoured she was to be his first crush, and flattered that he invited her to his grade's dinner/dance. Andy apologizes for not yearning for her in silence (as well he should have), then says he'd like her to have the corsage...in lieu of Mary Beth, who's apparently more into money than flowers. He pins it on Tootie's fugly man-shirt and shyly tells her she looks beautiful, and she gives him a cheek kiss as the audience coos, "Awwwww.."
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