"I should just bury myself in work, like Jenny." Jenny busily works, works, works, and there's a neat moment: "I like working for Eleanor. I don't need a guy to make me feel fulfilled. Especially when he's unavailable..." And off that ellipse, Eric perfectly says in ref to his internetting, "Oh, poor Nate..."
Which is hilarious, because poor Nate indeed, but also for Jenny's reaction ("WHAAAT?"), and the chemistry and great line-readings from the two of them. We miss Eric when he's gone. So the real reason for Poor Nate is the email Eric just got from S, reminding everybody to blow off N's birthday -- Rufus is shocked -- so they can do their surprise party Chez Waldorf. Jenny, Nate-seeking missile that she is, immediately begins plotting: "What's Nate supposed to do all day? Just sit at home and think everyone forgot his birthday? And let me blow him? And spend five whole hours thinking his girlfriend is a bitch? And then we get married? And I have to go to the fabric store! Immediately!" She runs off, and Eric's too focused on the scary pictures of quickly unfriended Denjuro to notice what a total fakeout that was. Thank you, Mood!
Within seconds Vanessa has 1) Questioned Dan's environmentalism, vis-à-vis the amount of paper he's gone through, which 1a) Yes, Dan's on a typewriter; and 2) mentioned his killer morning breath. Where's that toothbrush. Ugh. So he's writing a one-act rather than a short story (like he got published in The New Yorker and would clearly be his pitch piece) for the Tisch Writing Program, and it's due in two days. She needles him relentlessly and they are awful, and she reminds him that their SOP has always been to show each other things as fresh as possible so they don't end up in this place. Which is very, very good advice. The second you start editing, not that I know from experience obviously, for an audience is when the words go dead -- and his words are zombies to start with. So he fusses and finally hands it over, and she 3) Tells him about his body odor, and we're done.
Jenny has aimed herself like a rocket at Nate's face, locating him by sheer psycho magic after finding him unreachable (or Latitudable) on phone. She tells him she wanted to take him to lunch, but then of course Serena is such a good girlfriend that he's probs on his way to FAO right now, and he's like, "Just me and Grandfather," and she's like, "Sad but fine," and then turns back at the door and says, "Remember my gang rape? I sure do." He sure do too. And the sick sad face she makes when he crumbles is just the scariest. Who does that?!