One Lie at a Time is the eighth episode of Season One of One Day at a Time.
Penelope tells her family she has a date and Lydia says she's going to church, but each secretly go elsewhere. Meanwhile, Elena tests an attraction.
Elena Alvarez and Lydia Riera comment that Penelope Alvarez looks nice. She apparently has a date. Penelope asks what everyone else is doing and learns that Lydia is going to church, leaving Elena and Alex Alvarez alone. Elena tells them that she's asked someone to be her escort and that she'll know by the end of the day. Penelope leaves for her date but in reality, she is going to group with Jill Riley. Lydia leaves for church but in reality, she's going out with Doctor Berkowitz to the Opera. As they leave, Lydia trips over her feet and ends up hurting her ankle and breaking a shoe. Elena is watching Buffy and she tries to explain it to Alex when she gets a text from Josh who's going to be her escort. He says yes which leads to Elena freaking out. She'd asked a popular guy to be her escort and hadn't thought that he'd actually say yes. Josh texts her and tells her that she's cute. Alex asks if she's going to tell him that she doesn't like guys that way. Elena says she doesn't know that maybe she likes both guys and girls. She invites Josh to come over and Alex freaks out about what to wear. Elena tells Alex that he's not going to be here and sends him over to Schneiders. Penelope overshares at group and gets emotional because it felt so good to let it all out with the other woman who'd also been in the army. The women comfort her and give her a hug. Doctor Berkowitz takes Lydia to his office and examines her to make sure that she's okay. He asked her if she's eaten today and she says no. He scolds her and tells her that she needs to eat. He examines the foot that she tripped on and sees that she has a hammer toe. Lydia asks if she'll ever dance again and Doctor Berkowitz says that she'll be dancing in no time.
Penelope calls Elena and checks up on her. Elena lies and says that she's alone when really she's hanging out with Josh. She learns that Josh has liked her for most of the year. They start talking about Buffy and find out that they have that in common. Elena asks if she can kiss him and he lets her. They proceed to make out. Alex is at Schneiders when he asks if he can use the computer to look up info about lesbians. He wants to find out if they can like guys too. Schneider asks why he wants to know and he accidentally reveals to Schneider that Elena might be gay. Alex also tells him that Elena is with Josh alone so Schneider goes to interrupt them. He barges in and they break apart. Schneider says that Josh shouldn't be here without a parent around so he leaves. Elena is upset and Schneider tells her that the only reason he's up here is because Alex was confused that she suddenly liked a boy. Elena becomes even more upset because Alex told Schneider about her confused feelings. Lydia and Doctor Berkowitz arrive back at the apartment. Lydia asks what happened and Schneider lies for her but Lydia figures it out. Penelope walks in and tells Elena that she's grounded but before she can say more she gets distracted because Doctor Berkowitz is here. She realizes that Lydia and Doctor Berkowitz were on a date and can't believe that her mom lied to her. That's when Jill walks in and accidentally reveals that Penelope was in therapy. Suddenly, everyone is arguing about the other lying, especially after they learn that Lydia had a stroke 15 years ago, so Penelope tells Schneider and Doctor Berkowitz to leave. Penelope tells Elena that she can't believe she lied to her and Elena apologizes but she's still grounded. Penelope yells at her mom and asks that the next time she has a stroke to tell somebody. Penelope also tells them that she liked therapy because it made her happy. She asks if there are any more secrets that are being kept. Alex looks at Elena so Penelope sits down to talk with her. Penelope asks if anything happened between Elena and Josh. Elena tells her that they kissed and that it was okay. Penelope asks if she likes Josh and Elena says yes because he likes Buffy and has nice eyes. Although she admits that Alex might be more into him than she is. Alex walks out wearing Josh's letterman jacket.
- Justina Machado as Penelope Alvarez
- Todd Grinnell as Schneider
- Isabella Gomez as Elena Alvarez
- Marcel Ruiz as Alex Alvarez
- Stephen Tobolowsky as Leslie Berkowitz
- Rita Moreno as Lydia Riera
- Mackenzie Phillips as Pam Valentine
- Haneefah Wood as Jill Riley
- Judy Reyes as Ramona
- Froy Gutierrez as Josh Flores
- Sachie Alessio as Sachie
- Matisha Baldwin as Matisha
- Jennifer Candy as Jennifer
- Lauren Johansen as Lauren
- Virginia Pereira as Virginia
- Mackenzie Phillips, who played Julie Cooper on the original One Day at a Time, mentions having just watched a movie remake. She says it was nothing like the original but that she liked them both.
- The Alvarezes' apartment number is 402.
- Lydia had a stroke when Penelope was pregnant with Elena.