When we began to talk seriously about me moving from San Francisco to rural Illinois, my partner expressed concern regarding how I would deal with the culture shock. "No problem!" I answered blithely. "I'll just ask myself, WWTGGD?"
#1 Volunteer For Everything Ever
Organize a rummage sale to save the bridge! Enter the dance marathon to raise money for a tarp to cover the bridge! Participate in a knitathon to raise money to rebuild the bridge! And if there isn't anything to volunteer for, make something up and encourage other people to volunteer for it.
SOOKIE: I mean, you're an upstanding citizen, you're an active part of the community.
RORY: Yeah, you made all of the donkey outfits for the Christmas festival last year.
SOOKIE: You organized the Save the Historic Oak Tree campaign.
RORY: And you played Tevye in the, uh, Stars Hollow Community Theater production of Fiddler on the Roof.
LORELAI: Yes, well, 5 1/2 stars from the Stars Hollow Gazette, unheard of 'til that time.
TAYLOR: You've always been the head pilgrim girl at the food drive table.
RORY: Yes, well, that's for charity.
TAYLOR: The third leprechaun at the St. Paddy's Day festival.
RORY: Yes, okay, but again, for charity.
TAYLOR: You man the ticket booth on Groundhog Day. You help organize the manger procession at Christmas, you play Esther every year at the Purim carnival.
#2 Support Local Businesses
Apparently, it's possible to walk around Star's Hollow and buy everything a young lady needs to take with her to college. Our tiny town doesn't have any of these establishments, and the nearest small towns only have the hardware store. (They do have Walmarts, but I don't think that counts.)
RORY: Okay, we got the sheets, towels, bathroom shower caddy, and the basic first aid accoutrement. We still need to hit the beauty supply, the hardware store, stationery store...
LORELAI: The mattress store.
RORY: You do know that they supply you with a mattress at the dorm.
LORELAI: Yeah. A mattress that decades of students in various states of cleanliness have slept on. Some without pajamas.
#3-#5 Have A Huge Food Budget, Have The World's Fastest Metabolism, and Have Zero Need For Nutrition
The key to a Gilmore Girls-style small town life is being a regular. If you're a regular at Luke's, Al's Pancake World, Teriyaki Joe's, Jojo's, Antonioli's Restaurant, and Westin's Bakery, you're bound to meet lots of people, befriend proprietors and other regulars, keep up on all local gossip, and simply be a part of the town. Unfortunately, most of us have neither the budget nor the constitution to get every single meal from a local restaurant. Our nearest small town has two restaurants, and we maybe eat at one per month.
#6 Befriend The Town Gossip(s)
This is key. The Town Gossip not only knows who's lying about their age and who's walking into the diner without pants on but can also give you a lead on a job and generally let you know what's what. So far, I've only found someone who knows all the hot construction gossip: who's building what where and for whom. He's no Eastside Tilly, but it's a start!
#7 Immerse Yourself In Small Town Theater
Watch the local chef and her produce supplier argue! Watch the diner owner and the soda shop owner argue! Watch the Town Selectman and the dance studio owner argue! Say goodbye to Old Man Twickham as many times as possible! There's a good chance that there's far more drama in your small town than in any soap opera or reality show.
#8 Look beyond your own age group for friends
Babette and Maury are crazy cool, Miss Patty is the ultimate broad, Lane is super-fun, and even April had some potential if she hadn't been stuck in such a terrible plot line. The point is, you're bound to find friends if you expand your search range a few decades (in either direction) beyond your own age.
#9 Take Entertainment Wherever You Can Get It
Watch your Roomba, invest in an oinking alarm clock, have a Cop Rock marathon, gamble on the mystery meals at Al's Pancake World International Grab-Bag Night—anything goes. If you can figure out a way to be entertained by it, it counts as entertainment.
LORELAI: So is this more or less fun than watching the same TV show at the same time?
RORY: I think it's more.
LORELAI: You know, if we died right now, and decomposed, it would vacuum us up and no one would ever know.
#10 Entertain Yourself Nonstop
Talk back to your television, your answering machine, and most of your other possessions. Make jokes to your dog, yourself, and the ether. There's nobody else around? No problem: you are smart, fascinating, hilarious, and more entertaining than most people out there.