The Abstinence

The Abstinence

Infobox Television episode
Title = The Abstinence
Series = Seinfeld

Caption = George studies in the coffee shop.
Season = 8
Episode = 143
Airdate = November 21, 1996
Production =
Writer = Steve Koren
Director = Andy Ackerman
Guests = Bob Odenkirk, Derek Jeter, Bernie Williams, Brenda Strong, Debra Jo Rupp, Alex Trebek, Kyle Gass & David Letterman
Episode list = List of "Seinfeld" episodes
Season list = Infobox Seinfeld season 8 episode list
Prev =
Next =

"The Abstinence" is the 143rd episode of the American sitcom "Seinfeld". This was the 9th episode for the 8th season. It was originally broadcast on the NBC network on November 21, 1996.


George's girlfriend has mononucleosis and he can't have sex with her for six weeks. Elaine has met a doctor who has "almost" gotten his license to practice. Jerry agrees to appear at career day at his former junior high school, but he is bumped back because the children love the zoo worker, then when he is about to go on there is a fire drill. Kramer lights up a cigar in Monk's and is asked to leave. He meets others on the street who face his dilemma so he opens up his apartment as a smoking lounge.

Jerry's agent gets him a whole assembly at the school. George's lack of sex makes his mind sharper, he is learning new things quickly, he is now "smart". Elaine learns how much her doctor boyfriend doesn't know about medicine when he is unable to help a diner customer experiencing a medical emergency. She uses George's technique of abstinence to help him study to get his license, but in the process she becomes stupid. Later in the episode, she begs Jerry to have sex with her again, because she wants to clear her mind. When Jerry turns her down because the situation is "too weird", she then asks him if Kramer is home.

Kramer has had too much smoke, and his face becomes leathery and "hideous". Jerry struggles to figure out how to fill two hours in front of a junior high crowd. George however creates a presentation for Jerry's assembly. He uses his newfound intellect to give batting advice to New York Yankee players Derek Jeter and Bernie Williams, and to learn Portuguese. Kramer sees his lawyer Jackie Chiles about a case against the tobacco company for ruining his good looks, as his looks are his livelihood. He gets a settlement without Jackie's input, it turns out he gets a billboard with his face on it in Times Square.

George calculates the odds of having sex with a Portuguese waitress, he concludes that statistically, he has to do it. He arrives at the school and meets Jerry, behaving stupidly. Jerry realizes that George has had sex, so he can no longer go do his presentation, Jerry goes out and is greeted by boos. Elaine's boyfriend gets his license and dumps her, leaving her sexually frustrated.


*The working title for this episode was "The Portuguese Waitress."
*Out of all the episodes that he's appeared in, Phil Morris (Jackie Chiles) considers this episode his favorite.
*When Kramer gets kicked out of the restaurant, the man he talks to that also got kicked out is Kyle Gass, half of Tenacious D.

David Letterman makes a cameo at the epilogue of the episode. He bumps Jerry from his show after learning that Jerry was bumped from the school assembly.

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