Previously on The Real World: We learned that Irulan has a boyfriend named Gabe. They have an open relationship, except that he doesn't want her to hook up with any of her roommates. So, Irulan promptly hooked up with Alton, who has a tremendous crush on her. Alton worried that he's going to get his heart broken. Steven was worried about that too, and told Alton as much, because Steven thinks of himself as very, very wise.
Irulan opens some birthday presents from her mother. One present is a black thong. Irulan's friend Mikey, who is visiting, can't believe that her mother gave her some thongs (the underwear, not the shoes). In an interview, Irulan says that she's known Mikey since they were teenagers, and he also knows Gabe and the whole situation. Mikey says that if women are really wearing thongs these days, he needs to get laid more often. When was the last time he got laid, 1995? Women have been wearing thongs for years. Alton checks out the gifts and puts his dirty mitts all over Irulan's underwear. I'm sure that's not the first time he's had his hands there, but still. I wouldn't want people pawing through my underwear, even if I knew I was going to wash before wearing. In a confessional, Irulan talks about how excited she is about her birthday.
Irulan calls Alton over to see what else her mother sent. I was sure it was going to be some trashy lingerie, but in fact, her mother sent her some roller blades. Alton is excited, because now he has someone to skate with. Later, Alton and Irulan skate into the elevator and through the casino. Can you skate in a casino? That doesn't seem legal, really. In an interview, Alton says that he and Irulan have a much greater connection than a typical hook-up. They skate in the parking garage, and Irulan does that annoying girly thing where she flails her arms and screeches and begs Alton to help her, like, if she's that inexperienced a skater, maybe she should be wearing pads and a helmet. They skate through a parking lot, holding hands. In an interview, Alton says that his feelings for Irulan are growing. The stupid background song is about roller-skating, like, what an imaginative choice.
Back at the suite, Irulan and Alton discuss the difference between sex and love. Irulan says that she doesn't see sex as casual. See, I totally think that Alton and Irulan had sex in the tent (because, apparently, it pretty much says as much in the book about the season) and so this is Irulan's coded way of telling Alton that she has feelings for him. Think about it. She says she can't have sex with someone without having feelings for that person. She had sex with Alton. Therefore, she has feelings for him. Can you blame him for thinking they might have a relationship? In an interview, Alton says that his talks with Irulan are "really fulfilling" and that they are "emotionally very intimate." I think it's because Irulan likes to talk about herself and no one can understand what Alton is saying anyway, so she just blathers on and so does he. Irulan says that since she already has a relationship with Gabe, she wouldn't risk it just to kiss Alton unless she thinks he's really special. But not special enough for her to break up with Gabe. Isn't that the subtext here? Irulan claims she is grossed out by casual sex. Alton claims that he's never had casual sex, because it would compromise his integrity. Hello? Am I the only one who remembers the girl in the bathtub? Maybe they didn't have intercourse, but they might as well have. Alton says he's glad Irulan is there. In an interview, Irulan says she feels connected to Alton, and she knows that he's supposed to be in her life. Because he totally kisses her ass and makes her feel wanted on a daily basis, and since her boyfriend's not around, that's what she needs. At least that's my interpretation. Irulan trots over and plops down in Alton's lap, and they snuggle.