Dilbert (1999) s01e09 Episode Script

The Knack

We have a big problem here.
Drop everything you're doing and solve it.
I'm going to be late for work.
Oh, this is far more important than your career.
You always say that.
This time it's true.
The TV's not working.
I've been sitting here for nearly a minute without entertainment.
Change the battery in the remote.
The one on the left.
"The one on the left"? Well, that's just spooky.
Not really.
I have the knack.
The knack? For technology.
My mom says I always have.
I'm worried about little Dilbert.
He's not like other kids.
What do you mean? Yesterday, I left him alone for a minute and he disassembled the TV, our clock and the stereo.
That's perfectly normal.
Kids take things apart.
The part that worries me is he used the components to build a ham radio set.
Oh, dear.
Is that bad? Normally, I'd want to run an EEG on him, but the machine isn't working.
It's worse than I feared.
What is it? I'm afraid your son has the knack.
The knack? The knack.
It's a rare condition characterized by an extreme intuition about all things mechanical and electrical and utter social ineptitude.
Can he lead a normal life? No.
He'll be an engineer.
No! There, there, don't blame yourself.
Will it go away over time? It might, but pray it doesn't.
If an engineer loses the knack, the results can be devastating.
And in further news Thanks for filling in for our regular doctor on such short notice.
I was in the neighborhood.
Huh? Waah! Here.
I bought a Double-A yesterday because I sensed this coming.
You're freaking me out.
I don't know why.
I told you, I have the knack.
The knack.
Oh Oh Oh, yes.
As you know, humanity has pretty much destroyed the ecological balance of the planet.
It's not my fault! I recycle! No one's blaming you, Loud Howard.
I blame him.
Why do you blame me?! When you recycle your newspapers do you iron out the wrinkles first? No! Well, maybe you should, planet killer.
All right, then, that's settled.
The point is the earth is polluted beyond repair.
That leaves us one viable business strategy.
We're going to clean up the earth? Oh, gee No.
I should say not.
Clean up the No, we're going to start polluting outer space.
I didn't become an engineer so I could pollute the solar system.
Why did YOU BECOME AN ENGINEER? Isn't it obvious? She picked the one profession where she'd be surrounded by sexy men all day.
So, tell me more about this polluting- of-space idea.
Oh, no, no, no.
Shh We won't be calling it "polluting.
" Negative connotation.
We prefer the word "advertising.
" I'm talking billboards in space.
No one can read a billboard in space.
They can if we make them really big.
Do you have any idea how much that would cost? $1000? Maybe $50 billion.
Well, then, we'll just have to amortize the costs.
Amortize the costs? That doesn't even mean anything.
We'll find a way to get it done.
"Failure" isn't in my vocabulary.
Neither is "amortize," apparently.
Here we go again.
You're drinking out of my cup.
You have drunk from the cup of management.
Now you're infected! What are you talking about? That's ridiculous.
Soon, your technical skills will evaporate like the fine mist on a summer lawn.
They warned us about this in school.
There was management DNA in the backwash of that cup.
Now it's in you.
It's like a virus.
People I'd like to get the first space billboard launched in 30 days.
Does anyone see a problem with that? No way in hell.
That's the dumbest idea I've ever heard.
nincompoop who knows nothing.
A pointy-head idiot who stinks like old socks! Sounds like we have consensus.
I don't know what's wrong with this pen.
I'm going out on a limb here, but I'll say it's out of ink.
That management DNA must have infected you.
You've lost the knack.
I have not lost the knack.
I'll show you who's lost the knack.
I'll design this thing myself.
Out of my cubicle.
I need privacy.
This is my CUBICLE.
Sense of direction.
It's the first thing that goes when you lose the knack.
What's it mean when you get a system error number 53? Watch me solve this with intuition alone.
Error 53.
I haven't seen that one before, but I have a feeling it's your network interface card.
What should I do? Press "Control" and "F9.
" Thanks.
Hey, Dilbert.
Do you know how to subnet an IP address? It's been a while, but I think this will work.
I haven't lost my engineering knack just because a few things go wrong.
Even great athletes have dry spells.
Like the great Olympian, Emil Gartanamo.
World record holder in both the javelin and the 100-yard dash.
Only person who ever died by throwing a spear into his own back.
Did you just make that up? Clever, wasn't it? Can we talk about me instead of made-up people? Sure.
Pass the bread.
Okay, tell me about your day.
I've got to design a low-Earth-orbit advertising satellite as big as New Zealand and get it launched in 30 days for under $1000.
That is so sad and pathetic.
And then what? Well, that's kind of the whole story.
They're not laughing at YOU.
They're laughing with YOU.
I didn't say anyone was laughing at me.
You're only ugly on the outside.
What are you talking about? They say swimming is the best exercise.
Well, I've always agreed with that, but Hey! A light sail.
Well, you still need a huge ground-based laser to push it.
We can borrow the one at the particle accelerator lab.
We only need it for a few minutes.
Are you done yet? Good lord, man, you're working me to the bone.
Has it been tough? Well, this coffee cup doesn't carry itself around.
Get some rest, Wally.
You two, start pulling your weight.
The components are all off the shelf.
We can put this thing together in a week.
It looks good on paper, but how do we know you haven't lost the knack? I haven't lost the knack.
There's something wrong with it.
Let me have a look.
It should be fine.
Thanks, Dilbert.
Smart men are so sexy.
Do you think we could go out sometime? Attention all workers: Has anybody seen my pen? The one that writes in four colors? It's not worth a lot of money or anything, but my mom gave it to me This is a terrible program.
What else is on? Hey, where's the clicker? Why aren't I sitting in my recliner? Oh, for crying out loud.
For the last time, this is not a TV show.
You're telling me.
Look at this guy.
He hasn't moved the whole time I've been watching.
Although it does build suspense.
You know what? Leave this on.
Oh, what the hell.
I can't take it.
Tell me the ending.
the ship will achieve orbit.
At that time, the tissue-thin balloon material will unfurl, creating an advertising banner over five miles wide.
Ten seconds Seven Four, three, two, one.
All systems are green.
The laser should kick in in 15 seconds and put our baby on target.
Are you sure you gave the right coordinates to the laser operator? You've been off your game lately.
Me? Off my game? Ha! Uh-oh.
What should we do? Party.
music I'll sharpen your knives You simple housewives music music I'll sharpen you knives! music music I've got raisins Shriveled and brown! music music Who wants raisins The finest in town?! music music Bow and arrows Kill some birds music music Then you shove 'em In a pie music Hi, Dilbert.
Do I know you? What do you mean? We're your neighbors.
I'm Arnie from across the street.
The insurance salesman? What happened to you? Well, ever since that satellite got knocked out That was yesterday.
Yeah, well, things fell apart pretty fast without power and communications.
Luckily, Denise over there, she went to a Renaissance festival last summer so she knew what to do.
So you want to be a blacksmith? We also need a guy to sweep little piles of dung into big piles of dung.
I'll get back to you.
We have to realign the satellites and restore power and communications.
Oh, forget it.
Stop being a stick-in-the-mud.
Everybody's having a great time.
No more multitasking, no more fax modems, e- mail, voicemail, videoconferencing, teleconferencing, pointing, clicking and all that other stuff I never did anyway.
Where's Alice? Just follow the sounds of tambourines and drunken laughter.
Alice! Hey, buddy, you're going to have to wait your turn like the rest of us.
Quiet, knave.
What the hell is going on? We're celebrating the return to simpler times.
You mean, the downfall of civilization? No.
I mean, the rebirth of the human heart.
With technology gone, we're free to enjoy our true nature.
To release the animal within and let it live wild and untamed! So you're not going back to work? I am at work.
This is my job now.
You're a? Free spirit.
A child of nature.
I live for the moment and follow my whims wherever they guide me! How's the pay? I'm paid in joy.
And my hours are from yesterday until forever.
And if you don't like it, I'll kick the crap out of you! Terrific.
Where's the boss? He's over there fulfilling his role in the natural order of things.
music A dialogue about maximizing Quality, productivity music music Would bring about a consensus Within the time parameters music music Of our earlier Proactive assessments music And to think, Dilbert, we have you to thank for all of this! No, don't thank me.
This is awful.
Let's raise a glass of mead to Dilbert.
To Dilbert! Yuck! Ugh! What's MEAD? What's wrong with you people? Don't you see what's happened? Yeah! Fine.
If I have to repair those satellites single-handedly, then that's what I'll do.
Who's with me? None of us! If only I hadn't drunk the boss's coffee, I would still have my knack for technology.
I'm afraid your son has the knack.
Can he lead a normal life? You're drinking out of my cup.
Now you're infected! You've lost the knack.
That management DNA must have infected you.
You're only ugly on the outside.
I've got it.
I know how to get my knack back.
Hello? Hello?! Somebody answer me! There's got to be someone out there! I'll pay any roaming charges! I'll accept a collect international call! What did I tell you about trying to contact the outside world? music To facilitate The implementation music music Of our business system Transition strategy music music We must maximize our talent Base and thereby determine music music Our propensities For consensus building music Here, drink this.
Oh, kind sir, you offer me a tipple to slake mine thirst.
Alas, I have but recently imbibed a goblet of ale.
Just a sip then.
A sip? A sip you say? To wet one's whistle.
Why, what harm could it do? But verily, I am already quenched.
Drink it! Oh, good sir, your generosity will not be circumvented.
Ooh, whew! I salute you.
I don't feel any different.
I hope you washed your cup.
Dirty rags for sale.
Who buys dirty rags? You'd be surprised.
I don't need any rags.
What I need is to find my knack.
Yes, the knack.
It's like trying to find the one good rag in a huge pile of bad ones.
How is that the same? Sometimes the harder you look, the better it hides.
When you stop looking for the knack, it will find you.
You look familiar.
You know, if you shorten the axle about eight inches, you'll reduce the stress and you won't have this problem.
Looks like you found your rag.
I know you've grown accustomed to the new ways, the authenticity and the relationship with nature, but it's a lie.
We live in a cold, mechanistic technocracy.
We have to make that work.
I know life is unfair.
You'll get no argument from me.
I know it's not fun and it's not novel, but it's real.
To that end, I've turned this silo into a rocket by loading it with 20 tons of match heads.
It's going to reorient the satellites and give us back our technology.
Thank God.
I am tired of sleeping in dung.
And wearing these unflattering clothes.
I miss TV.
Yes, me too.
I need my shows.
Don't you miss it? I need it.
Ooh! It didn't work.
Everything is still ruined.
But now it's worse, because for a few moments, we had hope.
Time for a human sacrifice! Just let me get this.
Hmm, too bad.
I was beginning to enjoy the simple life.
Everyone likes the simple life, until it gets complicated.
Where's Dad tonight? He's still at the all-you-can-eat buffet place in the mall.
How long has he been there? Since 1979.
You got to hand it to him.
He doesn't give up.
For him, it's the principle.
He's not coming home until he's sure it's all HE CAN EAT.
It was a mistake for them to put bathrooms in that place.
You remind me so much of him.
What little I can remember.
How can they say it's the world's favorite snack? I'd like to see the evidence that supports that.
Maybe you should write to them and demand proof.
Now you've done it.
And how do they know this is 30% of my daily recommended fat? Isn't everyone a different size to begin with? Let's go in the living room.
He'll be a while.
Are they telling me a jockey needs the same amount of cookie protein as a professional weight lifter? They must think we're idiots or something.
Without a weight chart, this is completely unhelpful.