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'Parks and Recreation' recap, A proposition and a mild heart attack

So something happened and then something else happened but we don't care about all that because BEN PROPOSED TO LESLIE AND SHE SAID YES.

Ok, fine. In the rest of the show, Ben's campaign for the Congressman has been so successful that they wrap up early. And Jennifer Barkley convinces him to consider her offer of running a gubernatorial campaign in Florida. He does meet with the candidate, and even with his proposal to end the show, it's unclear if he takes the job or not.

After Leslie and Ann scare Jerry as he comes out of the bathroom (they meant to spook Tom) he suffers a mild heart attack. And for the rest of the episode the Parks and Rec people are almost actually nice to Jerry, even hosting a fundraiser to help pay his medical bills. The meanness toward Jerry is the one thing I'd always change about P&R so this makes me happy.

Meanwhile, Ron's still seeing Diane, and is having a difficult time spending time with her kids. It all comes to a head on Halloween -- while out trick or treating, Ron is left alone with the girls and one of them breaks the other one's tiara.

Ron is Solomon-like in his wisdom and promptly breaks the other girl's tiara. This does not go over well with the girls or their mother. Diane later confronts Ron about it and it looks like they might be over. But when Ron eventually goes to her house and she tells him straight up that the girls are part of the package, he assures her he can cope with that.

Catching up with our other players: Ann divests herself of all the things she owns only because of past boyfriends by selling it all at the fundraiser for Jerry. 

Andy is totally adorable with Diane's kids and we're reminded later of his plans to become a police officer. April is back in Pawnee, what with the congressional campaign being over, so our favorite newlyweds are back together.

Tom hits on the idea during the fundraiser of renting clothes, after a kid's mother won't buy one of Tom's old jackets because her son will grow out of it too quickly. And thus, Rent-a-Swag is born.

Chris is doing well in therapy and has a certificate (which he requested) to prove it. He also arranges a showing of "Death Canoe IV" which has Donna very excited. And there's a running gag throughout the show of Donna live tweeting things, which is a fun nod to Retta's actual live tweeting of "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" and other shows on her actual personal account.

But back to the proposal: Leslie is taking a last look at the place she'd planned to lease for her and Ben to move into. And then, all of a sudden, Ben shows up, a complete surprise to Leslie. (And to us!)

Now I'll admit, I noticed that he had his hands behind his back when he walked in and when they showed him from the back the first thing I did was look for a ring box. Because at heart I'm a sap.  Anyway.

Ben almost immediately drops to one knee and Leslie knows what's coming. He opens the box to display the engagement ring and when he starts to speak, Leslie makes him stop; she wants to pause and fix every detail of the moment so she can always remember it.

When it seems she's ready, Ben starts to talk again, but she cuts him off saying, "I need to remember every little detail about how perfect my life is right now at this moment." And then when he finally says, "Leslie, Will you" he's cut off right there with her exuberant "YES!" and enthusiastic kiss. When they pause the kissing to take a breath, he finishes, "Marry me?" And she says yes all over again.

I'm really glad they let Ben and Leslie have that proposal. There were no shenanigans, no mixed up communications, no wacky set-up. He was in his suit, she was in work clothes, so they both looked nice. They were in the room by themselves. It was sincere and sweet and wonderful. Thanks, "Parks and Rec."

Funny bits and stray thoughts:

- Watching Andy chase Diane's daughters around the office made me very happy for Chris Pratt and Anna Faris' son.

- Chris, speaking of his therapist: "He holds my life in the palm of his hand like a fragile little bird."

- When Chris shows up for Halloween, he is, at his therapist's suggestion, dressed as the thing he fears most. At first I can't tell what it is other than that it involves a Member's Only windbreaker. But then I notice the glasses and the powdered-to-gray hair and I think maybe he's supposed to be Jerry? Or his dad? (Because Jerry doesn't wear glasses.)

- Leslie telling us the Pawnee Municipal Employee insurance plan is kinda crappy: "One time I sprained my wrist and our insurance claimed that having a wrist was a pre-existing condition."

- Nice continuity nod with the "Ann adopts her boyfriend's personality and interests

- One of the items up for auction at the Jerry fundraiser is Perd Hapley's autobiography, "The Thing About Me Is, I'm Perd Hapley"

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
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