Not now Ben, I would like to introduce Derek's ass to my foot.
Leslie Knope

"Bowling for Votes" is the thirteenth episode of season 4 of the NBC television series Parks and Recreation. It originally premiered on January 26, 2012 to 3.49 million viewers.

Storyline Edit

Leslie Knope and her campaign team hold a focus group to gauge the public's view on her. One participant named Derek says he won't vote for Leslie because he feels she isn't the type of person he'd be able to go bowling with. An offended Leslie becomes determined to win Derek's vote by having her campaign hold a bowling night at Ricky's Rock N' Roll Bowling Alley, although Ben Wyatt tries to explain that there will be voters who simply won't like her. Meanwhile, Jerry Gergich organizes an all-night campaign fundraising event at Andy Dwyer and April Ludgate's house, with two movie tickets going to the person who raises the most money. Chris Traeger wants to win so he can take his girlfriend (Jerry's daughter) Milly out, while April wants to win in order dampen the overly optimistic Chris.

At the bowling night, Tom Haverford embarrasses Ron Swanson and Ann Perkins with his child-like bowling technique, but it proves very effective and he scores higher than Ron. Leslie challenges Derek to a game of bowling and lets him win while giving him free food and beer. He still refuses to vote for Leslie, angering her and challenging him to a rematch that she wins. An angry Derek calls Leslie a "bitch", resulting in Ben throwing a punch and knocking Derek to the ground. A smitten Leslie kisses Ben over a bloody Derek, of which a newspaper photographer takes a picture.

Chris, who is well in the fundraising lead, announces that he is going to ask Milly to move in with him, but Jerry privately reveals to everyone else that Milly is planning to end the relationship; she later shows up and does so, leaving Chris very sad. April wins the tickets, but feels guilty that her wish to see Chris sad came true. The next day, she buys a third ticket and offers a depressed Chris to join her and Andy at the movies, giving him a quick hug. Leslie refuses to accept Ben's resignation over the punch and holds a press conference to apologize to Derek, but she tells the reporters that she won't apologize because Derek was a jerk and Ben was right to defend her honor. At a focus group about the press conference, the participants give Leslie very favorable opinions.

Ron later returns to the bowling alley in disguise and tries out Tom's technique, bowling a perfect game.


Leslie: [on what the focus group is saying about her] All the things make me think a lot of feelings about myself.

Leslie: I've never been very good at letting things go. I can't tell you how many times a fun tug of a war with a dog over a chew toy turned contentious. One of us always gets mad.

Jerry: Is everybody feeling good?
April: Oh I don't know Jerry, it's Sunday night, I'm making phone calls to strangers, and you're in my house. My life couldn't be worse.

Ron: When I eat, it is the food that is scared.

April: I don't care about that prize, but I'm gonna win because I want his happiness to go away.

Ron: [on bowling] Straight down the middle, no hook, no spin, no fuss. Anything more and this becomes figure skating.

Ron: Tom, I'm asking you as a man to stop this immediately!

April: To the better place world, Fred.

April: I wished for his happiness to go away. I might be a wizard.

Bowling attendant: Hey, perfect game! What's your name? Put it up on a wall.
Ron: I was never here, and you will never speak of this again.

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