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Tonight’s episode of The Office was reminiscent of “Booze Cruise” in some ways as Andy attempted to inspire the staff by taking them on a day-trip in the hopes of squeezing a lot of work-related metaphors into a setting that didn’t really fit. Meanwhile, Kevin managed to do the opposite... sort of.
Just like Michael once forced the staff to go on a booze cruise in an effort to motivate them and make a lot of ship analogies back during the series’ second season, Andy (who wasn’t around back then) took part of the staff to Gettysburg. Not everyone wanted to go and Andy didn’t make the “corporate retreat” mandatory. We’ll get to what the rest of the staff was up to later.
The highlight of the trip, from the point of the staff, was likely the part where they got to watch (People Magazine’s sexiest man alive 2011) Bradley Cooper in Limitless on the ride down. Andy’s attempts to compare their jobs to war failed and in the end, Jim had to explain to Andy that he’s doing find as Regional Manager and that he has the support of the staff... and that he’s pretty sure people think the neon-pink hats that he made them where, which said “DM does GB,” might mean something “kinda sexual.”
As for who had the worst time in Gettysburg, that’s probably a toss-up between Dwight and Gabe. Gabe was mistaken for an Abraham Lincoln impersonator, which apparently happens quite a bit. He ended up putting on a lengthy (and seemingly rehearsed) Lincoln presentation/performance, which he almost looked like he was enjoying in the end.
Dwight spent the whole trip arguing with Oscar over his claim that Schrute Farms is the most northern battle of the Civil War. This led to a historian schooling Dwight on the battle, which did exist but was actually a code, not a battle. As it turns out, during the Civil War, Schrute Farms was known for being a place for “dandies and dreamers.” The video revealed that it was sort of the underground railroad for the sensitive and fabulous. Some people would probably be proud to know their land was a haven for creative-types and those too fragile for war, but Dwight is most definitely not “some people.”
Back at the office...
Robert California showed up unexpectedly and decided that the people who chose not to go to Gettysburg were the free-minded people of the group. In truth, they were all just the people who had no interest in spending hours wandering around museums and battlefields all day. In defense of Gettysburg, a place I’ve never actually visited, it’s one of my sister and brother-in-law’s favorite places to visit. Were it not for their enthusiasm about the historical place, I might be inclined to agree with those Dunder Mifflin staff members who decided not to go.
Robert tasked the remaining staff-members to come up with clever ideas. So while the rest of the staff was off not being inspired by Andy, Robert California was at the Scranton branch mostly not being inspired by a handful of people. He didn’t love Ryan’s “Origami is the sushi of paper” pitch, or Stanley’s “Papyr - Paper for women” idea. And Pam gave up on her coupon suggestion not long after she started to explain it. It was Kevin’s rambling about the arrangement of cookies in the vending machine that got Robert’s interest.
It took Robert the rest of the episode to realize that Kevin’s comments about the vending machine wasn’t an analogy about underselling the top performing items at the company, but really, just a complaint about where stuff goes in the vending machine. This revelation came after Kevin explained his Big Mac idea. Technically, saving one ingredient from a Big Mac and setting it aside each day would result in having a free Big Mac at the end of the week, but... gross, Kevin. Unless maybe if you save the burger for last...
Other notable moments
Was it me, or did Andy sound exactly like Michael when he said, “Obviously, we all want to die... but we have to get through this.” His comment in response to Gabe’s boring presentation seemed like the kind of thing Michael would have said during one of Toby’s boring speeches.
“Phyllis, think fast!” - Andy, before throwing a hat at Phyllis and hitting Gabe in the face.
“Apparently, I bear a passing resemblance to Abraham Lincoln. Makes it hard for me to go to places like museums, historical monuments, elementary schools. I don’t see it,” Gabe. Then he puts on the hat.
Pam is still pregnant, though we saw in the cold open that she isn’t above faking going into labor if it gets her and Jim out of boring or uncomfortable situations. This included faking her water breaking with a water bottle.
Kevin’s original list of ideas included combining objects, like a stapler-marker and, according to his list, a marker-phone, a phone-marker, a “stairs-man,” and something that started with “human-lady-something.”