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"Secretary's Day" is the twenty-second episode of the sixth season and the 122nd episode of The Office overall. It was written by Mindy Kaling and directed by Steve Carell. It aired on April 22, 2010. It was viewed by 6.30 million people.

Cold open

Most of the Scranton branch gather around Oscar's computer looking at a video Oscar made where voicemails left by Kevin are played over videos of Cookie Monster from Sesame Street. Kevin says that it isn't funny and he does not talk like that. Even Dwight is amused and asks Oscar to send him the link, as does the rest of the Scranton branch. Kevin asks Angela to step in, only for her to laugh and say that it is her favorite day.


It's Secretary's Day, and Andy tries to make Erin's special holiday a memorable one. He convinces a reluctant Michael to take her to lunch to a place of her choosing. While they are out, Michael accidentally reveals to Erin that Andy used to date, and was engaged to, fellow office worker Angela. However, Andy has not yet revealed this fact to Erin. She becomes visually disturbed after learning they had sex and were engaged, but tries to keep it in as best she can. Back at the office, during the main party, Andy begins to serenade her and she hurls a piece of cake at his face. She angrily reveals that she knows about Angela and Andy's relationship from Michael, and begins to accuse the other women in the office of sleeping with Andy. Despite numerous attempts from fellow office workers to help console and calm her, Erin ultimately decides to take some time away from Andy. At the end of the day, Andy looks on as it is Michael who makes her happy on Secretary's Day.

Meanwhile, Kevin finds the video Oscar made offensive rather than funny, as members of the office mock him for it and complains to Gabe about the video. In an effort to assert his authority, Gabe bans the office from talking about the video and about Cookie Monster. However, this doesn't stop Pam and Jim from sharing a laugh, while Kevin is at Erin's desk. In retaliation, Gabe suspends Pam without pay for contradicting his orders, then Jim for defending her, and eventually (and ironically) Dwight for applauding Gabe's actions. It all comes apart when Gabe calls corporate and finds out he has virtually no power or authority to make those decisions. He returns to the office to try to undo the damage and make everyone forget about the incident, but Toby tips off Pam about the mistake. Pam and Jim team up and reverse the situation, getting a "two day paid vacation," while Dwight apologizes and kisses Gabe's hand instead. After Jim and Pam leave, he decides to save face and mock Kevin as well, but does a poor impression. Kevin finally retaliates by doing an impression of Gabe, and the rest of the office joins in on mocking Gabe as he leaves the room humiliated.

At the end of the episode, Kevin tries to get Oscar back by making his own parody video by using Oscar's voice and comparing him to The Count. However, everyone finds it to be unamusing, with even Oscar wondering why Kevin did not choose Oscar the Grouch instead. Michael, however, tells Kevin he finds the video funny and congratulates him on it.

Deleted scenes

  • Dwight welcomes Pam back and asks if she spent her maternity leave wisely, "nursing your infant, exposing her to the natural world, but I suspect you squandered it doing watercolor painting." Pam admits that she did do some painting. In a talking head, Dwight says that you should only be able to paint the president, "or in a perfect world, the Kaiser."
  • In one drawer of her desk, Pam discovers fruit flies on a forgotten cupcake, and maggots in another which Dwight was harvesting.
  • Michael explains that his plan was to give Erin $15. That is what he did every Secretary's Day with Pam, since Pam always requested the cash equivalent of lunch, promising to go to Cooper's and have a sundae. In a talking head, Pam says, "I can't believe that worked."
  • In a talking head with Erin, she shares her excitement and her admiration for Michael. She says that he's even more awesome than Sully Sullenberger because Michael would have said something funny as they landed. She attempts to recreate the scene, but admits that her version wasn't funny, but that's why she's not the boss.
  • In a talking head, Erin explains that she prepared for their lunch by going to a web site and collecting conversation starters. "Because bosses like women who can talk at length about things."
  • In the car, Erin tries out her conversation starters, but Michael gives brief answers and asks to listen to his book on tape. As the tape plays, Michael closes his eyes, even though he is driving.
  • A much longer and far more awkward version of Erin's lunch with Michael:
    • Erin talks about a previous job as the only Caucasian hostess at The Golden Palace, immediately before talking about her job at Taco Bell Express.
    • Michael interrupts Erin's discussion of Taco Bell Express to try to excuse himself to go check out the pennysavers in the restaurant lobby.
    • Erin talks at length about not having a desk. She realizes she's talking too much and tries to explain why she's talking so much, which makes her talk even more. Michael is desperate for the lunch to end. This leads Erin to asking if Michael has a favorite age.
    • Erin says that she doesn't have a favorite month any more.
  • In the car on the ride back to the office, Erin stews as Michael listens to the audio book. The book reaches the end, and Michael tries to cheer her up. He tries to give relationship advice and tell jokes, but Erin is unresponsive.
  • Pam, Jim, and Dwight wait impatiently as Toby talks. Toby is disappointed to learn that they just want him to check whether Gabe has the authority to suspend them. The three refuse to leave until they get an answer, so Toby stops eating his banana and looks it up.
  • Ryan consoles Erin in an attempt to get her to join him and Kelly in a threesome, a goal Ryan shared with the documentary crew in The Mentor: BFFs?. For more information, see Ryan-Erin Relationship. Kelly comes in, hugs Erin, and invites her over to have some vodka-infused watermelon, party, and "take crazy photos on our camera phones." Kelly and Ryan simultaneous hug Erin. Erin leaves. Ryan is frustrated that his plan didn't work. He tells Kelly, "I can't tonight either."
  • Joint talking head with Jim and Pam. Pam says the first day back at work wasn't so bad. She then adds, in a Cookie Monster voice, "Me want suspension every day!" She does other Cookie Monster impressions, which cracks up Jim.

Amusing details

  • Writer Mindy Kaling explains Erin's Secretary's Day gifts:[1]
    • Ryan and Stanley give her boxes of chocolates.
    • Creed gives her a Beanie Baby teddy bear, presumably stolen from a local gas station.
    • Meredith gives her a $5 Amazon gift certificate.
    • Dwight gives her a crate of beets, with reminder emails to "make sure to return the crate as soon as possible."
  • Ryan, continuing to experiment with fashion, wears an untied bow-tie. Ever since Ryan has become 'sober', his fashion sense has become more and more 'hipster'-esque.
  • Angela is once again head of the Party Planning Committee, a development which is not explained.
  • This is again another time an exact date is mentioned, because Secretary's Day (or Administrative Professional's Day), which would be on the last Wednesday of April every year, which would be April 21st in 2010, the day before the episode aired. This would also mean Andy and Erin started dating around April 1.
  • Michael doesn't want to go to the restaurant because "they always screw up your order". We discover that the screw-up is that they put "only" five or six pickles on his burger, which is way too many already. The waiter then sarcastically agrees to bring him an entire bowl of pickles.
  • Michael takes Erin to lunch even though in "Café Disco" he says there is a strict no lunch with the boss policy at Dunder Mifflin-Sabre.
  • Michael's lunch scene with Erin is unusual in that Erin is driving the scene with her antics and Michael is reacting to it. Usually Michael is the primary force in a scene, with others reacting to him.
  • Erin asks Andy if he slept with Phyllis, Kelly or Pam. The first two vigorously shake their heads "no" in horror, while Pam is heard saying "No, No, Never."
  • The stage Andy stands on during the party is made from boxes of paper.
  • Kevin thinks the word suspension begins with the letter C.
  • Andy has no argument when Michael says that everyone knows he can't and won't keep a secret, acknowledging it as true.
  • The web site that Erin visits in a deleted scene to collect conversation starters is covered in pop-up ads that she has to keep closing. Its gaudy style dates from the late 1990's.

Connections to other episodes

  • Kevin wishes Darryl a happy bird-day, a callback to "The Alliance".
  • The first time we saw Pam's plant alive was in "Michael Scott Paper Company".
  • Dwight keeps hand sanitizer in his desk, despite his "perfect immune system" ("Health Care"). Spoiler: In "Christening", Dwight rejects the idea of hand sanitizer and believes there should be hand de-sanitization stations.


  • Andy's suit shows no trace of cake stains at the end of the episode.
  • Michael is reluctant to go to lunch with Erin, obviously getting very annoyed, not wanting to be there and not liking her very much. This is odd, considering at the end of the episode Scott's Tots, Michael says he has a good feeling about her, and the two seem to start the positive "father-daughter type" relationship that continues throughout the series.
  • Kevin tells Erin that if he had been engaged that he would have told her, however Kevin was engaged to Stacy up until Season 5. (Not necessarily a goof - Seeing as Kevin is meant to have told Erin, if the two of them were dating, he would have told her about Stacy.)
  • When Angela and Erin are at Reception, talking about Angela's past with Andy, Toby suddenly appears and laments that his fax isn't going through. He wasn't there when Angela walked over and it doesn't seem like there's time for him to sneak in and fail to send a fax between cuts. However, the lack of awareness of Toby's presence by the characters and audience does play on the idea of his blandness and forgetability.
  • Andy says, "If it wasn't for secretaries, I wouldn't have a stepmom," but in a previous episode states that his parents are married.

Behind the scenes

  • The employees huddle around Oscar's computer to watch the Cookie Monster video. In the story, this is because Oscar made the video, but in real life, Oscar's computer was the only one with working sound.[2]:45:20

Cultural references

  • Secretary's Day (more generally Administrative Professionals' Day) is a day which recognizes the efforts of secretaries, receptionists, assistants, and similar professionals.
  • Sesame Street is an award-winning children's television program. It is set on an urban street with a variety of human and Muppet residents.
    • Dwight identifies it as a show set in the barrio, a derogatory term for a lower-class Hispanic neighborhood. Many of the characters on Sesame Street are bilingual in English and Spanish.
    • Cookie Monster is a character with a gravelly voice. He is known for his craving for cookies (which he eats with the sound om nom nom) and his signature song "C is for Cookie". Cookie Monster habitually substitutes the word "me" for "I", as in the sentence "Me eat cookie" used in the episode.
    • The Count is a vampire who loves to count.
    • Oscar the Grouch is a character who lives in a trash can and enjoys complaining and being unhappy.
  • Girl Scout cookies have been sold by Girl Scouts (an organization for girls) as a fundraiser since 1917.
  • Chimichanga, chalupa and tostada are different types of Mexican foods.
  • Kevin asks that Oscar call him back ASAP, short for as soon as possible.
  • Ryan asks Oscar to CC me. CC originally stood for carbon copy and refers to someone other than the addressee who receives a message.
  • Hayworth's is a fictitious restaurant in Scranton.
  • M&M's are a popular candy, Kevin's favorite.
  • Precious: Based on the Novel "Push" by Sapphire (usually shortened to Precious) is a 2009 movie which won two Academy Awards in 2010. (The joke is that Michael is listening to a novelization of a movie that was itself based on a book. Why not just listen to the original book?)
  • Taco Bell is a chain of fast-food restaurants serving Mexican-style food. Taco Bell Express is a version of Taco Bell with a more limited menu. (The joke is that the expanded menu was too stressful for Erin, even though it's still a fast-food restaurant.)
  • At the restaurant, Michael announces, "I'll have what she's having," the punch line to the deli scene in the movie When Harry Met Sally, another scene in which a character creates a disturbance in a restaurant.
  • Cadillac is a brand of luxury cars. It is common to describe something as "the Cadillac of X" to mean that it is the most luxurious X in the world.
  • Mrs. Fields is a national chain of stores which sell freshly-baked cookies and other snacks.
  • Gabe suggests that people leave the impressions to the pros at MADtv, a sketch comedy show which ran from 1995 to 2009.
  • Mr. & Mrs. Smith is a romantic, action, comedy film about a married couple, both of whom work as assassins for competing agencies, jobs kept secret from each other, who discover that they have been assigned to kill each other.
  • Cooper's Seafood is a seafood restaurant in Scranton, frequently referenced by the show.
  • Andy's song, "Secretary of Love," is a play on Lou Reed's "Satellite of Love."

From the deleted scenes:

  • Sully Sullenberger is the pilot who safely landed a passenger jet in the Hudson River in 2009 after suffering engine failure. He became widely lauded for his bravery and calm, and his autobiography was made into a movie Sully starring Tom Hanks.
  • The Golden Palace is a real Chinese restaurant in nearby Wilkes-Barre. (The joke is that, as the only white person, Erin was mocked for her round eyes, reversing the usual racist gesture of Westerners mocking east Asians for their narrow eyes.)
  • Michael makes an excuse to look at the pennysavers near the restaurant entrance. A pennysaver is a free newspaper consisting of advertisements and coupons. They are frequently stocked in restaurant waiting areas.
  • Erin forgot to eat her LUNA bar, a nutritional bar aimed at women.
  • Chewbacca is a character from the Star Wars fictional universe. Michael uses the name as a pun on "chew".


Main cast

Supporting cast

Recurring cast

Guest cast