People change people.

Girl Meets the Secret of Life is the third episode in season 2 of Girl Meets World and the 24th episode overall. It aired on May 13, 2015 to 2.6 million viewers.


Lucas' old friend from Texas transfers to John Quincy Adams Middle School, and Cory uses an unusual method to teach the kids about the meaning of life.


Just as Cory's class begins, a new student walks in to the classroom who turns out to be one of Lucas' old classmates from Texas.  Cory welcomes him to their class, and says that if he works out as well as Lucas has, they’re happy to have him. The new student, Isaiah "Zay" Babineaux, is surprised to see that Lucas is doing well at JQAMS, but Lucas is more perplexed than pleased to see Zay and insists they wait until after class to catch up with one another.


As Cory is about to start teaching again, Yogi contemplatingly asks aloud what the secret of life is. Always willing to change his lesson plan for a student in need, Cory takes up the question and asks Lucas his thoughts, at which point Maya chimes that Lucas should know, referring to him as the “moral compass” of the class, which causes Zay to laugh aloud in disbelief. Zay was under the impression that everyone there knew about Lucas' past, and then after blurting out that Lucas is a year older than the others, Zay presses Lucas to tell him what the others know, because he doesn't want to say anything he shouldn't. Riley and Maya begin to realize that Lucas was somebody quite different back in Texas, which is confirmed by Zay. Cory reveals that he knows all about Lucas’s past, which upsets Riley, and Lucas confesses that he transferred to New York to get a new start because of something he did in Texas that got him expelled from his school in Austin, but he does not tell what he did.

During lunch, Riley and Maya (who calls Lucas by name for the first time) beg Lucas to deny Zay's claims, but he cannot. Riley reveals that she's not so much troubled about what Lucas may have done in Texas as she is about the fact that he didn't tell her. She argues that friends are supposed to trust one another, and that it’s not right for Lucas to let her like him knowing he’s keeping something significant about his past from her. Lucas says that he just wanted a fresh start, and that he is not proud of what he did in Austin. Later at home, Riley angrily confronts Cory about the fact that he knew about Lucas' expulsion and didn't tell her; Topanga assures Riley that Cory knows what she needs to learn from it, but when Riley asks him what it is, he says nothing.

The next day, Cory gives the class a math problem to solve: "Al washes a car in six minutes while Fred washes the same car in eight minutes. How long does it take Al and Fred to wash the same car together?” Farkle quickly answers "three minutes, 25.7 seconds, but Cory says that is incorrect. Cory tells the class their assignment is to wash a car together; he pairs Riley with Lucas to wash the car, and if they do it right; they will uncover the secret of life.

Riley and Lucas wash the car in six minutes and eight seconds, but it takes nearly twenty minutes for Maya and Zay to wash the same car, so Farkle pressures Riley and Lucas to wash the car again, and to do it in the three minutes, 25.7 seconds just so they can show up Cory. Riley quickly attacks Lucas with the water hose demanding he tell her what he did to get expelled, but Lucas still refuses. She confronts him with the fact that he was the first boy she ever really liked, which is a big deal for her; she demands to know if he's worth her liking him, saying that she wants to believe him and will believe him if he says 'yes', which he does. Zay remarks to Maya that they're a close-knit group; when Maya asks Zay what Lucas did to get expelled, Zay declines to answer believing he has already said too much. He then walks back into the school alone.

Back in class, Cory reveals that except on paper, there is no answer to the math problem he gave them before. Lucas asks if there is an answer in life, and Cory says that they’ve now arrived at the secret; Riley thinks he’s referring to Lucas’ secret, but Cory is actually talking about something more ecumenical. Lucas tells Riley that his secret will come out when it’s meant to come out, and that he’s a different person now than he was when he lived in Texas. Cory reveals that this is the secret of life: people change people. When Cory asks Lucas where Zay is, he replies he doesn't know. Lucas admits he cares about his friends, including Zay, and marginally expounds on the reason for his expulsion: that Zay had a penchant for getting himself into trouble and Lucas took it upon himself to bail Zay out ("What was I supposed to do?").

Meanwhile, Zay, attempting to find his own circle of friends, is in the hallway glibly talking to Joey Ricciardella, the school punk, who promptly grabs him by his lapels and pins him against the lockers. When Zay calls out to Lucas for help, Cory allows him to go to Zay's rescue, but not before he tells the class that if he comes back without being expelled, they’ve changed him; Cory follows Lucas out to the hall with Riley, Maya and Farkle right behind.

Lucas and Joey in Girl Meets Secret of Life

"I'm going to be the one that walks away."

Lucas quietly confronts Joey, admitting it would be easier for the two of them to start throwing punches at one another, but then Lucas warns him that if worse comes to the worst Joey will lose, so Lucas allows him to keep his reputation in exchange for letting Lucas keep his. After Joey leaves, Lucas asks Zay why he came to New York; Zay goes into a long-winded account about how he missed his best friend and that he convinced his entire family to pack up and move to New York, but it turns out that Zay's father got transferred to New York same as Lucas' father. While he admits he's glad Zay is there with him, Lucas says he doesn't want to have to be the same guy he was in Texas. Zay observes that he isn't anymore as the two walk back into class, and Riley echoes Cory's words, "people change people".


Main cast

Guest cast


Riley: You know what I like? Life. And I like it when it doesn't change
Farkle: Any thing gonna happen to you?
Riley: No changes. Loving life.
Farkle: Anything gonna happen to you.
Lucas: Nothing ever happens to me.
Farkle: Maya.
Maya: [snores]
Cory: In 1831, Belgium declared-
Yogi: What is the secret of life? [Farkle stares at Yogi.] I'm sorry Mr. Farkle. I know I'm not your daughter but I too have value in this world. What is the secret of life?
Farkle: Put the eraser down and nobody gets hurt.
Riley: You gave birth to a horse.
Cory: So, shall we actually finally learn what happened in Belgium in 1831?
Farkle: No!
Cory: No?
Farkle: I always get my hopes up and then something happens to hurt my little Farkle heart. Well, this time I refuse to believe.
Farkle: Three minutes, twenty-five seconds.
Cory: Wrong!
Farkle: I'm sorry. What did you just say?
Cory: You're wrong.
Farkle: I'm wrong? You're a history teacher teaching English, math, Science, whatever else you've got going on at home. You waltz your wife in here on career day.
Cory: She's a respected attorney.
Farkle: My father says she should have been my mother.
Riley: You told me you wanted to be a veterinarian. You told me you gave birth to a horse.
Maya: That had to hurt.
Maya: So, just between you and me, what did Ranger Rick do? Did he tip over a cow? Did he put eleven gallons in a ten gallon hat?
Farkle: Nineteen minutes and forty-two seconds. You are the worst carwasher in this class.
Maya: Ugh, you mean no one will ever ask me to wash a car for them? Say it.
Riley: You're a genius.
Maya: Oh, stop.
Zay: He thinks this is math class. Somebody stop him. You, what's your name?
Farkle: Farkle.
Zay: What'd you call me?
Farkle: My name is Farkle.
Zay: Who would do that to you?
Lucas: Mr. Matthews teaches a lot of things. He's open minded that way.
Riley: He can be open minded because he knows who we are.
Lucas: Ooh, she took us both out.
Riley: Were you thrown out of school?
Lucas: Yes.
Riley: For a whole year?
Lucas: Yes.
Maya: I finally like you!
Maya: It occurs to me you're trying to tell us Ranger Rick was a little different back in Texas.
Farkle: Don't do it. Put that eraser down and nobody gets hurt.
Farkle: Okay, new guy's all settled in and there's still class time left, so do it! Do it while I'm still tingling.
Maya: So you don't want anything to change?
Riley: No, don't like change. Changes fills my pockets with pennies of uncertainty.
Riley: We should sing our happy song.
Maya: We don't have a happy song.
Riley: We should have a happy song.
Maya: We will never have a happy song.
Riley: Not with that attitude.
Maya: Oh, Huckleberry, Huckleberry, whatever bad things you did at your old school, you are still such a Huckleberry.
Maya: You do. He does.
Cory: Thank you, Maya.
Cory: Yes, I did know that Lucas was expelled.
Topanga: What?
Cory: Topanga, you knew this. I told you all about this.
Topanga: Yeah, I know you told me all about this, but I want nothing to do with that.
Maya: Boy, are you gonna get yelled at, Matthews. Aw, I missed it. Do it again.
Riley: [storms in] YOU KNEW??!
Auggie: Well, I'm not gonna beat that.
Topanga: You know, normal people consider their home to be a sanctuary from the storm of the outside world. Why can't we be normal people?
Cory: Topanga! There could be a significant amount of drama heading in our general direction.
Maya: Look, we don't know the story yet. Let's know the story before you go to Riley Town.
Riley: I'm not going to Riley Town. I'm calm.
Maya: I like you better when you're not calm.
Riley: I can drive daddy crazy in eight seconds.
Auggie: I can drive mommy crazy in six seconds. How long does it take Auggie and Riley to drive mommy and daddy crazy together?
Cory: There's the secret of life. People change people. No matter what I teach you in here, learning from the people you care about is more important than the words on any page. That's why I let you talk in here sometimes. That's why it's interesting.
Farkle: I was wro-.
Cory: Excuse me?
Farkle: I was wro-.
Cory: Well, it takes a big man to admit when he was wro-.
Zay: Wow. Yours is really something.
Maya: She a lot of work.
Zay: What happens to her when you're home sick?
Maya: Oh, I can never get sick.
Farkle: The only two who washed the car in six minutes and eight minutes exactly were Riley and-
Maya: Lucas? Was it Lucas? Could it have been Lucas? Lucas?
Lucas: You know who I am. I'm Ranger Rick. We rode on a white horse. I asked your father permission just to go on a date with you. Who does that?
Cory: I teach this way because in my old school I had a very strict teacher.
Zay: He teach history, English or math?
Cory: I don't know. But in his class, there was no talking. No interruptions.
Zay: So, you didn't like him?
Cory: I loved him.
Farkle: So why don't you teach like him?
Cory: Because I would never try and be like him. I would only fail. I only succeed with you guys if I get my teaching across as effectively as he did.
Cory: Al washes a car in six minutes. Fred washes the same car in eight minutes.
Lucas: (confronting Joey) Yeah, I know it'd be simpler to just start takin' shots at each other, but I'm going to tell you something, and you really need to hear this: In the end, you're going to be the one on the floor. And I'm going to be the one who walks away.
Maya: (shuddering) Ooooooh..
Riley: He's going to be a veterinarian.
Lucas: (again to Joey) So, I'm going to do you a favor, and let you keep your reputation. Now I'd like you to let me keep mine, (backs up) otherwise we're going to be twenty and still be in middle school. You want that?
Joey: I am twenty.


  • First appearance of Zay.
  • George Feeny and Stuart Minkus are mentioned.
  • References from Girl Meets Boy and Girl Meets First Date are used.
  • First time a non-studio set scene was used in the series.
  • Back of the class Brenda makes a second appearance.
  • There are references to previous episodes Girl Meets First Date, Girl Meets Friendship, Girl Meets Boy and Girl Meets Maya's Mother.
  • Maya jokes about "Rileytown," which comes into existence in Girl Meets Rules.
  • This is the fourth time the lesson on Belgium 1831 is interrupted.
  • Maya repeats Lucas' name in the same way Cory and Shawn used to repeat Minkus' name.
  • The character of Joey Ricciardella (named after GMW staff member Geralyn Riciardella) is reminiscent of Harley Keiner, and is a more menacing version of "Dump Truck", the character Shak Ghacha portrays on the Disney Channel series Liv And Maddie.
  • The same Car Washing question from the Boy Meets World Season 1 episode "Once In Love With Amy" is used.
  • Riley and Lucas have a water fight.
  • When Lucas told Joey that he'd be the on the floor and Lucas would be the one that walks away, Maya seemed intrigued and interested; she emits a more quiet shudder similar to previous times when she fails to aggravate Lucas with her playful cattiness.
  • First time Farkle is wrong (he also admits it). Stuart Minkus, Farkle's father, also gets the question wrong, even though they get the right "textbook" answer.
  • Riley references Girl Meets Boy in this episode. She talks about Lucas by saying "He's going to be a veterinarian", which is what he claimed he wanted to be in Girl Meets Boy.
  • Cory is the only one that knew about Lucas' bad past.
  • Maya calls Lucas by his name, and acknowledges the fact.
  • At one point non-related to the scene mentioned above, she says Lucas' name in a sentence similar to the way Cory and Shawn did to Minkus in Killer Bees (Boy Meets World).

International premieres

  • June 19, 2015 (Canada)
  • September 20, 2015 (Latin America and Brazil)
  • November 21, 2015 (Hungary)
  • November 29, 2015 (Poland)
  • December 12, 2015 (Romania)
  • January 4, 2016 (Israel)
  • January 24, 2016 (Italy)
  • September 20, 2016 (Philippines)


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The image gallery for Girl Meets the Secret of Life may be viewed here.


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To view the Girl Meets the Secret of Life transcript, click here.


Girl Meets World "Girl Meets the Secret of Life" Tonight! Sneak Peek

Girl Meets World "Girl Meets the Secret of Life" Tonight! Sneak Peek

Girl Meets World Girl Meets the Secret of Life Water Fight Clip 1

Girl Meets World Girl Meets the Secret of Life Water Fight Clip 1

Girl Meets World Girl Meets the Secret of Life Fight! Clip 6

Girl Meets World Girl Meets the Secret of Life Fight! Clip 6