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Parks and Recreation

Episode 5.19 : Article Two

Parks and Recreation Poster

TV Info


Episode Premiere

April 18, 2013

Distributor

NBC

Genre

Comedy

Show Period

2009 - now

Production Company

Deedle-Dee Productions, Universal Media Studios

Cast and Crew


Director

Amy Poehler

Screenwriter

Matt Murray

Main Cast

Synopsis


It's "Ted Party Day" in Pawnee, when the town commemorates the great Tea Dump of 1817. Interestingly enough, when the Pawnee Charter was originally written, they misspelled Tea as "Ted," and ever since, the town has dumped a random guy named Ted into Ramset Lake to celebrate the occasion. This year, however, the Teds in town have had enough. They want all the old laws stricken from the record so the ridiculous injustices can end. But Garth Blunden, a historical apologist, hates the idea and decides to filibuster the hearing to overturn the old laws.

Meanwhile, Chris is forcing April to enroll in his "Chris Traeger Management Training Seminar," or CTMTS, since she now runs the Animal Control department. April begs Ron to get her out of the training program, and he's eager to help her get out of the work. But when Ron confronts Chris about his stupid program, he accidentally mentions how he's never had a "management training program" in the 12 years he's been heading up the Parks Department. Shocked by this revelation, Chris enrolls both Ron and April in his CTMTS program.

Leslie has anniversaries for everything, and Ann feels bad that Leslie keeps giving her amazing gifts on her own created holidays without receiving anything in return. With "Breakfast Day" on the horizon, Ann is desperate to win Leslie a waffle maker from JJ's Diner off of eBay, but someone keeps out-bidding her. Ann soon realizes that someone is Ben, who's trying to buy Leslie the perfect present for "Waffle Day." But as the two argue over ownership of the waffle iron, someone else swoops in and wins the auction. Now they're both up a creek.

Elsewhere, Leslie tries to talk Garth Blunden down from his anachronistic beliefs. Garth claims Leslie doesn't respect the town's history, which she takes great offense to; Leslie used to give tours for the Pawnee Historical Society! After Garth says Leslie couldn't survive two days in historical times, they agree to a wager. They'll both live in the Pawnee Historical Cabin together and see who can last longer in the primitive environment. If Leslie wins, her bill will go through. But if Garth wins, she'll redact her amendment.

In Chris' seminar, he asks Ron and April to write down and seal a statement of what they wish to gain from the experiment. They'll read them afterwards to see how much they've grown. Both Ron and April would rather be anywhere else. Chris believes people are motivated by positivity, encouragement and smiles, but Ron knows the only practical way to lead is through fear, money or food. April just wants them to agree on one of them so she can leave. Chris and Ron decide to test out both their theories to see which one is more effective.

Later, at the Pawnee Historical House, Leslie and Garth begin their challenge with Tom and Andy as objective referees. They put all modern devices in a pail and fully embrace the 19th century lifestyle. Leslie quickly realizes Garth is tougher than she thought - she imagined he'd give up in a few hours, but it seems like Garth is thriving in his role as a colonist. He planted an entire field of barley already! Leslie's convinced he's cheating, but when they check his phone and realize he just doesn't have any friends - or anything better to do - Leslie throws in the towel and admits defeat. She sympathetically offers Garth a position on the Pawnee Historical Commission. He agrees, on a trial basis.

Elsewhere, Ben tracks down the JJ's waffle iron at the Pawnee Pawnshop, only to find Ann - and Leslie's mailwoman - already in line to purchase it. Leslie's mailwoman is trying to secure a perfect gift for "Mail Day." The pawnshop owner offers the waffle iron to Ann if she goes on a date with him, but right before she agrees, Ben counters with $500 and wins the device. Later on, when Ben feels guilty for stealing Ann's gift, he asks her to go halfsies with him on the waffle iron with the idea of giving Leslie a "joint gift."

Chris asks Jerry to file a box of red folders for him in the most positive and uplifting way possible. Jerry is honored. Later, Ron orders Jerry to file his blue folders immediately and even steals his candy bar away, saying he can eat when he finishes. Later, when Donna relays the results to Ron and Chris, the outcome is inconclusive. Jerry filed more of Ron's folders, but they weren't done properly on account of his anxiety. When Ron and Chris open up April's pre-seminar statement, they find out April predicted she'd "pit Ron and Chris against each other, then she'd steal $20 from Chris for pizza and Ron's watch just for fun." She succeeded on all counts. Ron and Chris agree she'll make a fine manager.

When Ben and Ann present the waffle iron to Leslie, she's overjoyed. Ben and Ann seize the opportunity to let Leslie know they can't keep up with all the holidays - from now on, they just want one day a year where they can combine all the holidays in one. Leslie counters with a month, but they eventually settle on one week: Ann Week and Ben Week. Everybody wins, and to commemorate the first annual "Friend Day," in which Leslie's best friends became best friends, she gives both Ann and Ben pre-wrapped presents. How did she already have those on hand?!

Leslie loves history and is all for preserving it for future generations, but when it comes to government, they've had almost 200 years to advance and she thinks they ought to put it to good use. Most of the old laws are taken out of the books, but Leslie does let one remain, with a small caveat: Pawnee will continue to celebrate their beloved Ted Party Day with one volunteer "Ted" to be thrown into the lake on an annual basis. This year Garth volunteers, but a naked Andy can't resist and throws himself in the lake instead. Hooray Ted Party Day!

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