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411 - A Pager, a Club and a Cranky Bag of Wrinkles

Aired Thursday, March 11, 2021
A Pager, a Club and a Cranky Bag of Wrinkles

Dr. Linkletter (Ed Begley, Jr.) has had enough of Sheldon hanging around all the time and urges him to make some friends on campus. Meemaw goes on a trip with Dale's ex-wife, June (Reba McEntire). Meanwhile, Georgie gets a pager.

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Episode Notes

  • Title Reference: "A Pager" refers to Georgie's second-hand device, "a Club" refers to Mary telling Sheldon to join a group on campus, and "a Cranky Bag of Wrinkles" was June's description of her ex-husband, Dale.
  • Opening Credits Sequence: Sheldon is dressed in his normal clothes as a cow approaches the family.
  • Missy mentions Star Trek: The Next Generation star Wil Wheaton as she reads a teen magazine. Sheldon would go on to declare Wil Wheaton one of his mortal enemies before they buried they hachet years later. Wil Wheaton was a recurring guest star on The Big Bang Theory, playing a fictionalized version of himself. [Wil Wheaton episodes]
  • Sheldon starts a fan club at the university for fans of Professor Proton's show.
  • Adult Sheldon refers to his winning a Nobel Prize in Physics, as established in the series finale of The Big Bang Theory. [1224]

> Sheldon's Knock

When Sheldon checks for Dr. Linkletter in the men's room, he knocks three times on a stall before asking for Linkletter, although he only does this once.

Quotes

Mary: I thought you were gonna join a club.
Sheldon: Too bad there isn't a Dr. Linkletter Haters Club. I would join that in a heartbeat. Maybe I should start one.
Mary: Starting your own club is an interesting idea. Maybe just not one based on, you know, hating someone.
Sheldon: You started that group at church for parents who hate The Simpsons.
Mary: It's not about hate. We just write letters to get it taken off the air. [chuckles] And it's gonna happen any day now.
Adult Sheldon: Ironically, the only Simpson she did like was O.J. Time's funny that way.

Sheldon: I'm hurt Dr. Linkletter doesn't want me as a friend.
Mary: Understandable.
Sheldon: I'm also angry. I don't like having two feelings at once. It's annoying. Great, annoyed. That's three.

[title: Sci-Fi Club:]
Sheldon: So, what kind of activities does the Science Fiction Club engage in?
Greg: Well, this Friday we're having a screening of Star Wars on laser disc.
Sheldon: I thought this was the Science Fiction Club.
Greg: It is.
Sheldon: Star Wars is science fantasy. The Force is basically magic. At that point, you might as well be watching The Hobbit.
Greg: That's next week.
Sheldon: This is madness.

Missy: Wil Wheaton's cute.
Sheldon: If you like him, then you should watch Star Trek with me.
Missy: He's not that cute.

Dr. Willard: The Moho lies between the mantle and the crust, and...
Sheldon: Excuse me, I'm looking for Dr. Linkletter.
Dr. Willard: He's not here.
Sheldon: Sorry for wasting your time. Oh, this is geology. You're already wasting your time.

Featured Music

  • Crazy
    Patsy Cline

    Crazy June sings along as the song plays on the radio as Meemaw drives them to the casino.

Episode Trivia

  • How old is Dr. Linkletter?
    • 68
    • 65
    • 63
    • 60
  • What song do Meemaw and June sing at karaoke?
    • Islands in the Stream
    • The Time of My Life
    • Endless Love
    • Don't Go Breaking My Heart

Episode Recap

Adult Sheldon explains that after his first few weeks at college, the transition had gone quite nicely. His classes were going well, he knew his way around campus, and he had a vibrant social life. When Dr. Linkletter unlocks his office door and walks in, he finds Sheldon waiting for him at the table. When Linkletter asks what he’s doing there, Sheldon replies lunch and says he didn’t start without him. After Linkletter wonders how he got in, Sheldon explains Janitor Jim let him in, saying Linkletter’s not his only friend around there.

As Dr. Linkletter begrudgingly eats lunch with Sheldon in his office, Sheldon offers to trade his apple slices for Linkletter’s pudding cup, arguing he’s too old to eat pudding cups. When Linkletter says there must be somewhere else Sheldon could eat lunch, Sheldon says lunchtime is a busy period for janitors. When Linkletter suggests Sheldon widen his social circle, Sheldon says he’s already up to two friends and that’s double where he was in high school.

As George watches TV, George Jr. arrives home. After a very brief conversation about each other’s days, George notices something on Georgie’s belt. Georgie explains it’s his new pager, but George can’t see why anybody would be in a rush to get in touch with him. When Georgie gets paged, he dials the number only for someone to ask for Bruce. George laughs as Georgie says he’s not Bruce and hangs up.

That night at Meemaw’s house, she checks her answer machine and finds a message from Dale’s ex-wife, June, apologizing for how they left things last time. Dale wonders why Meemaw’s getting an apology when he’s the one June was trying to piss off. Dale complains he never once got an apology from June in forty years of marriage, although Meemaw points out he’s not exactly the type to say sorry either. Dale says that’s not true, he spent years saying he was sorry he ever married June.

At the college, Janitor Jim once again lets Sheldon into Dr. Linkletter’s office. After sitting down with his lunch, Sheldon checks his watch and wonders where Linkletter could be. He goes to check the men’s room. Sheldon knocks three times on a bathroom stall and asks if it’s Dr. Linkletter, but the man responds no. Sheldon interrupts a lecture to say he’s looking for Dr. Linkletter, but the professor says he’s not there. Sheldon apologizes for wasting his time, before noticing he’s a geology professor and says he’s wasting his own time. Eventually, Sheldon finds Dr. Linkletter eating lunch in his car. Linkletter admits he wanted a little privacy. Smart, Sheldon says, as he climbs into the car to eat his lunch.

When Georgie phones the number following another page, a woman asks if Bruce is there. After Georgie once again says he’s not Bruce, the woman explains she was trying to find her grandson so he can take her to the pharmacy. Georgie says good luck. After the woman explains she took her last heart pill this morning, Georgie says he is sorry to hear that. The woman reasons she could walk to the pharmacy if she takes it slow. Later, the woman, Mildred, tells Georgie he’s a life saver as he gives her a ride in his car. She says they’ll be passing by the farmer’s market and wonders if he’s ever had the peaches. Georgie doesn’t think he has, so Mildred says they’ll stop by and she’ll buy him one. Georgie says that’s not necessary, but she insists. They’ll also swing by Braum’s and pick up some whipped cream to go with the peaches.

Back home, after Mary gets off the phone, she tells George it was Linkletter saying Sheldon is spending too much time with him. Better him than us, George jokes. Mary says Linkletter thinks Sheldon should make friends at the college, but Mary is worried he’ll be hanging out with people who are drinking and going to parties. George scoffs at the notion Sheldon will befriend the cool kids.

Over at Meemaw’s, Meemaw asks June if she’s still dating the young guy. June confirms she is, saying it wasn’t just to piss off Dale, Justin’s hot and they don’t eat at 5:00. Meemaw asks June if she’s available that weekend for a trip to the Royale Casino, since she has a coupon for a free room. Meemaw explains that if you lose enough money, those places start giving you all kinds of crap.

As Sheldon works on his computer, Missy is reading a teen magazine and remarks that Wil Wheaton is cute. Sheldon suggests she watch Star Trek with him, but Missy says he’s not that cute. When Mary comes into the twins’ bedroom to talk to Sheldon, she mentions she’s been looking through the college catalog and there’s a lot of clubs that he could join. Mary suggests the science fiction club, but Sheldon says he prefers science fact. When Mary mentions the astronomy club, Missy jokes that he might meet someone from his home planet. When Sheldon questions why it’s so important to his mother that he join a club, Mary says she wants to make sure he gets the full college experience. Sheldon admits that other people might benefit from his presence. Mary says he might benefit too, but Sheldon says he doesn’t spread his sunshine for selfish reasons, and asks to look at the catalog.

Sheldon finds Dr. Linkletter in his office at lunch time, and says hi to his “lunch friend”. When Sheldon breaks the bad news that he’ll be joining a club and will no longer be joining him for lunch, Dr. Linkletter can barely contain his glee. After Linkletter pretends to be sad about the development, Sheldon consoles him by saying he’ll still be eating lunch with him today as Linkletter will be helping him find a club to join.

Adult Sheldon says the interview process was harder than he expected. At the chess club, Sheldon asks why he should join them. Chris explains there’s cool people, good chess players, and when the weather’s nice they meet in the quad. Outside? Yes. Under trees? Yes. Where birds live? Yes. “I think we’re done here,” says Sheldon. At the science fiction club, Sheldon is disappointed to hear they’re screening Star Wars, which he describes as science fantasy, saying the Force is basically magic. Finally, at the debate club, Sheldon proposes that the newest member of Debate Club should be Sheldon Cooper. Sheldon takes the side that he should not join as his time is too valuable. When Patricia asks whether he wants to join or not, Sheldon remarks that that’s the debate, isn’t it. Sheldon says if she’s thrown for a loop, just wait for his rebuttal: Sheldon Cooper should not join the debate club because her leadership is clearly questionable. When Patricia tells him he’s not in the club, Sheldon says “Ha! I win”, before realizing what he’s done.

As Missy and Georgie watch TV, his pager beeps. When Missy asks if he’s gonna call them back, Georgie says no, explaining it’s an old woman who keeps getting him to do her chores. Missy says she’s not his grandma, so why doesn’t he just phone her back and say no? Georgie agrees and picks up the phone to do just that. Later, Georgie drives Mildred back from the garden center with a bunch of plants in the back of his car. When he asks what she’s going to do with them all, Mildred says plant them in her garden. After Georgie comments that that sounds like a lot of hard work, Mildred smiles at him. Aw, man.

As Meemaw drives June to the casino, June wonders why she was invited instead of Dale. Meemaw says the last time she and Dale went to a casino didn’t work out so well. Because he proposed and she said no? Meemaw can’t believe Dale told her that. June says the joke’s on her as she actually said yes to Dale’s proposal. When “Crazy” by Patsy Cline comes on the radio, June asks Meemaw to turn it up as she loves this song. As June sings along, Meemaw mentions there’s karaoke at the resort.

When Dr. Linkletter arrives at the college, he notices his office door is open. Linkletter finds Sheldon at his desk working on his computer. Sheldon explains he prefers Linkletter’s keyboard to the clacky ones in the library. When Linkletter says he thought Sheldon was joining a club, Sheldon says he tried but they each had their own problems. After Linkletter questions whether any of the problems were him. Sheldon says he’s funny, he’s missed this. When Sheldon asks if he wants his chair, Linkletter says he does and he’d also like his office back. Sheldon doesn’t understand. Linkletter tells Sheldon he can’t just hang out there whenever he wants. Sheldon wonders why not since they’re friends. Linkletter says no, he’s a professor and Sheldon’s a student. Linkletter tells Sheldon he’s tried to be nice about this but he just isn’t taking the hint. Linkletter tells Sheldon that if he has questions about class, he is there for him, otherwise please leave him alone. A crestfallen Sheldon says he understands and walks out.

As Mary drives Sheldon home from college, he says he’s upset that Linkletter didn’t want to be his friend. Mary thinks that’s understandable. Sheldon says he’s also angry, and he hates having more than one emotion at once. He’s also annoyed. Great, that’s three emotions. When Mary mentions him joining a club, Sheldon says it’s too bad there wasn’t a Dr. Linkletter Haters Club, he’d join that in a heartbeat. Sheldon ponders whether he should start one. Mary says starting his own club isn’t a bad idea, just maybe not one based on hating someone. Sheldon reminds her she started a church group for parents who hate The Simpsons. Mary insists it’s not about hate, they just write letters to have it taken off the air, which is gonna happen any day now. Adult Sheldon says ironically the only Simpson that Mary did like was O.J.

At the casino, June remarks that whoever decided to put video poker in the bar is a genius. Meemaw says if the chairs were toilets they’d never have to move. When Meemaw asks June what else Dale told her about their relationship, June is surprised she’s still hung up on that. June says she doesn’t think Dale meant to tell her; they were having a drink and it just slipped out. Meemaw didn’t realize they were still close. June wonders if she’s jealous, but  Meemaw insists not. When Meemaw asks if June has slept with Dale since the divorce, June says “gross”, describing Dale as a “cranky bag of wrinkles”. Since they’re being honest, June asks Meemaw whether she regrets saying no to Dale. Meemaw says no, but June detects a moment’s hesitation in her answer.

When Sheldon takes a break from the computer to ask Missy if her social experience in middle school has been going well, Missy says yes. After Sheldon asks if she’s a member of any clubs, Missy says they call their lunch table “Heather M. and the Funky Lunch Bunch”. Sheldon doesn’t understand why people say the social aspect of education is so important. Missy wonders if it’s because the education aspect’s so boring. Sheldon says that's the whole point of school, but Missy decides she’ll stick with being popular. Adult Sheldon points out that one of them has a Nobel Prize, while all the other just has is a loving family and friends. Which he also has. “Boy, did I win!”

When Georgie arrives at Mildred’s house with a bag of groceries, he gives himself a pep talk and says this is it. After an attractive girl his age answers the door, she thanks him for being so sweet to her grandmother. Georgie says Mildred’s the sweet one. When Ashley calls Mildred to say Georgie’s here, she asks if he wants to stay for dinner. Georgie says he’s free and rushes inside. Elsewhere, Meemaw and June sing “Islands in the Stream” at the karaoke bar.

The next day at school, Sheldon sets out to start his own club. Sheldon puts up a flier for the Professor Proton Appreciation Club. Later, Sheldon waits in an otherwise empty classroom. When a young man enters, Sheldon welcomes his fellow Professor Proton fan. After he says he thought this room was empty, Sheldon explains it’s not. The guy says he was just looking for some place quiet. Sheldon says since it doesn’t seem like anyone else is going to show up, he’s free to sit down. As the guy sits down, Sheldon explains the idea to start a club came from his mother and Dr. Linkletter. As the young man tries to read, he asks if Sheldon’s going to keep talking. Sheldon mentions he’s got a book he could be reading. Adult Sheldon explains the “Read in Silence Club” was founded that day, and its members were him and his new friend… Sheldon asks the guy what his name is, but the only response he gets is a shush.

The next morning, a hungover June and Meemaw are woken by the phone ringing. After Meemaw answers it, Dale says “Good morning, sunshine”, before mentioning that it’s actually 2:00 in the afternoon. Dale knows they had a wild night singing and everything. After Meemaw wonders how he knows, Dale explains they phoned him at 3:00. Meemaw doesn’t remember that and wonders what she said. Dale mentions Meemaw talking about the all-you-can-eat seafood buffet, but Meemaw gathers there’s more and wonders if he’s going to tell her what she said or not. Hell no, he’s having too much fun. As she goes to hang up the phone, Meemaw says she hates him. Dale says he can live with that.

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