Casa di Soprano. Meadow and AJ are at the breakfast table, bickering about syrup. When Meadow spots an ad in the paper, she suggests a shopping spree with Carmela. Like she really needs more clothes to lug home every weekend. AJ, however, needs underwear, which I mention for no particular reason. Unfortunately, Carmela is too busy doing Meadow's laundry to go shopping. And then the Meadow we all know and hate reappears as she waves her glass imperiously above her head, signaling for a refill. Carmela gives her the stink-eye, and Meadow finally gets up to get it herself. You know, say what you want about the girl, but for me, this scene was the crux of the entire episode. Meadow's a snot, and she's spoiled rotten, but what separates her from Tracee and Caitlin is that she has a family that, whatever their sins may be, truly cares for her. She has support, affection, protection, and even occasionally discipline. She's also been forced to grow up fast with the knowledge of her father's occupation. The life lessons she learned in "College" in season one now serve her well in season three's "University." Our little Meadow is now officially all grown up.
Back at the dorms, Caitlin shows up at Noah's room. He's writing a paper for political-science class, but she begs to be allowed to hang out. She even promises to just study silently, and he finally relents reluctantly.
Fade to the Bing, where we'll soon break some hearts and break some heads. The strippers are out onstage again. I just recently read in an article that David Chase also shoots a watered-down, network-TV friendly version of each show for when syndication rolls around. I seriously doubt you'll ever be watching this episode on TBS, though. It's only forty-eight minutes to begin with, and if you cut the nudity alone you'd be down to half an hour. Maybe he can do a shortened version, like Ally. Silvio comes over to Bouncer Bob, who's sporting an eye-patch, and asks why they're a dancer short. Bob reports that Tracee called in sick three days ago and hasn't been seen since.
Columbia. Caitlin enters their room and sits down across from Meadow. She happily announces that she's going to Vermont for the weekend, to stay at the horse farm of a family friend who also happens to be a psychiatrist. They're going to "ride and talk," and Caitlin thinks everything will be really great if she can "just not get freaked out by the sound of the pine trees at night." Meadow barely lets her finish that sentence before jumping up and running off to Noah's room.