How I Met Your Mother s03e15 Episode Script

The Chain of Screaming

Kids, the spring of 2008 was a pretty great time for me.
Stella and I had started dating, and I'd just gotten a big raise at work, so I decided to purchase something I knew it would be the envy of all my friends.
A new car! Ted, this is New York City, you're never gonna drive it.
This is a really, really stupid purchase, and, and I'm sorry, but none of us can support it.
Shotgun for eternity! - You can't call shotgun for eternity.
- I just called it.
You can't just call things, Barney.
I call that I can call things! Hey, baby.
Beer.
Are you okay? Beer.
Okay, what happened? They always told me that that working at a big law firm was like being at war.
You get out of law school, it's like getting out of boot camp.
That first day at work, you're storming the beaches, full of piss and vinegar - Dude, we're lawyers now.
- Totally.
We've got briefcases and everything.
Freakin' briefcases.
- You have anything in yours? - Totally empty.
You? Candy bars.
Then you get in the trenches side by side with your buddies and you feel a sense of camaraderie.
But before too long Hey, Marshall.
the shells start to fall.
Hello, Arthur.
Arthur Hobbes is one of the senior partners at my firm, and he's he's my boss.
He seems like a nice guy, but he's got a nickname Artillery Arthur.
How's your morning going? It's going fine, how is yours? Not too bad, not too bad.
Hey, is Ferguson in yet? He is, he's in, just in his office next door.
That's great.
Have a good one, buddy.
You, too.
You never know who's gonna get hit Hey, Ferguson! I read your report, and it's complete crap! No, you know what? That's an insult to crap.
If crap could eat and then crap stuff out, it's that! Your report is the crap that crap craps! If you last two more days here, I'll be shocked! Shocked! It was brutal, but the worst was a few minutes later.
Did you hear that? Yeah, sorry.
Can you believe he did that on Take Your Daughter to Work Day? So that brings us to today.
Oh, no.
A little background.
So I'm working on this report called "Using 23-b-3 Spurious Class Action Precedent to "Contest a Class Certification Order Based On A Lack of Commonality, Numerosity" Dude, you lost us.
Can't you just call it something cool like "the Ninja Report"? Okay.
Yeah, fine, whatever.
Um, so I'm supposed to turn in "the Ninja Report" yesterday.
- Awesome.
- Cool.
But I got insanely busy with other stuff, I didn't get a chance to finish it, and then this morning - Hey, Ferguson.
- Hey, Arthur.
- How's your day going? - I gotta go.
- Great.
How is yours? - Great, great.
Hey, is Marshall in yet? Oh, thank God.
Yeah, he's right in there.
Fantastic.
Have a good one, buddy.
And then He screamed at me.
Oh, baby, I'm so sorry.
What, that's it? You're upset because a guy talked loudly near you? Barney, I have never been screamed at like that in my life.
Come on, when's the last time you got screamed at at work? I got screamed at three times today.
Once in Korean.
This is corporate America, Marshall.
Screaming is a motivational tool, like christmas bonuses or sexual harassment.
It's just good business.
Oh, baby, it's just not fair.
You've been working so hard.
Late nights, weekends.
I never see you.
We've barely made love in weeks.
It's bad, guys.
Mama needs her sugar.
Look, Marshall, he screamed at you, you took it.
He probably respects you more for it.
Yeah, about that So Arthur's busy giving me the full screaming treatment Face turning red, vein in his forehead about to burst, spittle flying like shrapnel.
Everyone you work with walking by your office, peering in.
And suddenly, I just felt all of it.
All of what? All of it.
The fact that I became a lawyer to save the environment, end now I'm working for the bad guys instead.
The fact that I am stuck in this job because of a mortgage I can barely afford on an apartment that is crooked.
The fact that I am a grown man, and nobody, not even Artillery Arthur, has the right to talk to me like that! I begged my body not to do it.
But it was no use.
Oh, God, I just I just Just because you weren't around for this, I called shotgun for all eternity in Ted's car.
Dude, I can't believe you cried in front of your boss.
I don't know what happened.
There's just something about being yelled at like that, like I was being scolded by my dad.
Suddenly suddenly I was a little boy.
Is "boy" the right word? I felt absolutely powerless.
Flaccid.
Hell, I I felt castrated.
God, you're hot right now.
And the worst thing is, tomorrow morning I have to walk into Arthur's office and give him the Ninja Report.
- Ooh.
ooh.
- Ninjas are cool.
How the hell am I supposed to face this guy again? Here's what I would do if I were you.
Hi, Arthur.
Hello, Marshall.
Have you finally finished the Ninja Report? Yeah, I got it.
Right here.
I think it's gonna blow you away.
Please, I have a family.
So we good? We're so good.
Then why are you still in my office? Okay, gun violence might be the answer to everything up in Canada, Robin, but here in America, we solve our problems with words.
Marshall, you go in and you dazzle this guy with a big eloquent speech defending human dignity.
Like Abraham Lincoln.
Yeah, because it's so easy just to bust out a big, eloquent speech off the top of your head.
Observe.
- Arthur? - What do you want, Marshall? Justice, sir.
You see, we are all born with certain incontrovertible rights, the most fundamentally paramount of which is the right Wait, you can't be fundamentally paramount.
One means highest, one means lowest.
You are nailing this.
Human beings have rights, and those rights are, um You got me hooked, reel me in.
There are certain justices that cannot or will not be inalienable as such for the future.
Stuck the landing Bravo! Thank you.
Security's gonna rough you up a bit on the way out.
Guys, guys, this is not helping, okay? I can't have some big confrontation with Arthur.
I need this job, I I need the money.
Yeah, but how good would it feel to walk in there tomorrow, - tell him off and then quit? - It's great to fantasize about, but nobody ever actually does it.
Gary Blauman did it.
Guy I used to work with, the guy's a legend now.
We were at the morning meeting and old Blauman was getting reamed out but good.
Pretty much routine at the morning meeting, but then, on this particular day, something amazing happened.
You made yourself look bad, you made this company look bad, and quite frankly, you made our friends, the North Koreans, look bad! And I'll tell you something else, Blauman, if you think for one You know what, Bilson? You can kiss my ass.
Oh, snap.
- What? - You heard me.
I don't need to take your crap anymore.
My cousin's website went public today, and I made a pile of money on the IPO, so you know what I think of this whole damn company? - Oh, my God.
- He peed on the conference table? Come on, come on, come on, come on, come on, come on, come on Uh, look, could you guys just look away for a second till I get started? Come on.
Does this help? Eventually, he just gave up and left.
And then his cousin's website tanked.
And then he became a janitor at an old folks' home and moved into a one-room apartment above a bowling alley.
That's it? That's the end of the story? No, no, of course not.
He died.
How does that help me? How does any of this help me? Can somebody, for God's sakes, please give me one piece of useful advice? Lily, control your woman.
The lesson of Blauman is that when your boss screams at you, you never scream back.
That's why there's a little thing in corporate America I like to call the Chain of Screaming.
- Chain of Screaming? - Yes.
The Chain of Screaming starts at the top.
Arthur's boss's boss screams at Arthur's boss.
Arthur's boss screams at Arthur.
Arthur screams at you.
You go home and scream at Lily.
Lily screams at one of the kids in her kindergarten class.
Then that kid screams at her dad, Arthur's boss's boss.
And the whole thing starts all over again, thus completing the Circle of Screaming.
I thought it was a Chain of Screaming.
It's a circle, Ted, I called it a circle.
I don't scream at Lily.
And I don't scream at my kids, none of whom have parents who work at Marshall's firm.
So it's not a circle.
Fine.
You want it to be a Chain of Screaming, it's a chain of screaming.
I came up with the circle idea halfway through, cause I thought it was a more elegant metaphor, but fine, ruin it! You guys always undermine me when I'm trying to make a point, and I'm sick of it! God, I'm surrounded by idiots! Idiots! See, doesn't everyone feel better now? Lily, I need your take on this.
What what should I do? Well, what I teach my kids in kindergarten Oh, God.
is, when dealing with a bully, the most important thing is to be constructive and positive.
- Hello, Arthur.
- Hello, Marshall.
I have the Ninja Report right here.
But Arthur, in the future, if you want someone to do their best work, try to motivate them, not with fear and intimidation, but through encouragement, inspiration and respect.
Well said, Marshall, I I needed to hear that.
By the way, I saw your wife's picture in your office.
That is one tasty slice.
Oh, you're damn right.
You know what I'm gonna do when I get home? Oh, yeah.
I'm gonna rip that girl's clothes off That's it.
just throw her on the bed That's where she belongs.
and drive her home like a pack of sled dogs! It's bad, guys.
Mama needs it bad.
You're right, baby, it's about respect.
That is the first useful thing anyone's said to me tonight.
Can you give me that speech again? I'm gonna drive her home like a pack of No, the other part, please.
I have the Ninja Report right here, but And it seemed like that was the end of it, but it wasn't, because the next night Which of these carpets would look better in the new apartment? I like the color of this one, but this one's so soft.
It would feel great on your bare feet or your bare back, a bead of eager sweat rolling down your trembling bosom.
Lily, didn't we just go through this with bathroom tiles? Shh, don't say my name.
Lily can't know it's me.
Just pretend you're talking to Stella.
Be all lovey dovey.
Hey, Stella.
Sweetie, how's it going? Not good, not good at all.
Where are you right now? Right downstairs, come find me.
Without Lily.
Okay, I'll see you soon.
I love you.
I love you, too.
Wow, you two are already saying the "L" word, huh? Apparently.
You hitting that? - Oh, oh.
- I'm in trouble, Ted.
Ted, I'm freakin' out, man.
It's a new car, so just be careful I did something stupid can we just drive somewhere? I need to get away, just drive, man.
Please just drive.
It's just, this is a really good parking spot.
Dude! Look, just tell me what happened first.
Remember how I said I was gonna give that big speech that Lily told me to give, be firm but respectful? Well, it didn't totally go that way.
There is a lot of ketchup on that burger.
Sorry what happened? After we all finished talking last night, I went to the diner to finish working on the Ninja Report.
Hey, Marshall.
How long have you been sitting there? If you go in there with Lily's kindergarten nonsense, you're gonna get torn apart.
I'm here to save your life.
You hungry? - Yeah, I was just about to order.
- What do you want ? A BLT and gravy fries.
Okay, friends, what do you like? A green tea with lemon for me, and for my friend here, - the meatloaf, please.
- Very good.
- No, I didn't want meatloaf.
- Marshall, the Chain of Screaming is a real thing.
Arthur screamed at you, now you have to scream at someone else.
- No, I don't.
- Yes, you do, or else that anger is gonna eat you alive.
Who would I even scream at? I don't know.
How about somebody who's disappointed you? Someone who's let you down.
Someone who's gonna bring you meatloaf when you explicitly ordered a BLT and gravy fries.
No.
I was just heading to the bar.
What are you guys doing here ? I was just telling Ted a story.
I like stories.
You want a lick? What? Is that ice cream cone big enough? Uh, it's delicious enough.
Okay, so Then I say to barney I'm not gonna scream at the waiter, Barney.
Yes, you are.
That waiter is every boss and every bully who ever embarrassed or belittled you.
And how dare he deny you the one thing that you want, that would make you happy at this moment.
A BLT and gravy fries.
One green tea with lemon, one meatloaf.
Enjoy, my friends.
Marshall.
Excuse me? Yes? This is not what I ordered.
Yes, it is.
I beg your pardon, sir, but I ordered a BLT and gravy fries, And as the customer, I'm always right, so No, no, I am not going to stand here and take this! I am at the end of a triple shift, that's 18 hours! And then I have to take two trains and a bus to Astoria to have my wife scream at me because I'm never home.
No, no, you eat your damn meatloaf! Hey, what are you guys doing out here? Oh sweet, can I get a toot? Against car rules, this is against car rules! Oh, Ted, relax, it's Cuban.
People pay to have their car smell like this.
Well, that's just not true.
Oh, Marshall, switch seats with me.
- I called shotgun for all eternity.
- You can't call shotgun for eternity.
- Well, that's funny, cause I did! - It's case by case.
Guys, I'm telling a life-altering story here! A 20% tip, really, for that waiter? I don't know, Barney, he worked a triple - it just - I can't believe you know what ? If you're not gonna yell at the waiter, Yell at me.
- What? - Yell at me.
I'm not gonna yell at you, Barney.
What, you think you're gonna upset me? Please, give me your best shot.
Okay, fine, what, you want me to yell at you? This is me yelling at you, Barney.
I'm sorry, I couldn't hear you over the sound of a butterfly landing on a leaf about three blocks away.
This is me yelling at you, Barney! Okay, you got some volume, now give me some content.
Make it hurt.
You don't look as good in suits as you think you do! No, something that's true.
Come on.
The man made you cry.
Make me cry.
Your mom's a slut! Yes.
Your mom's a slut, and I'm sorry, Barney, but you and your brother clearly have different fathers, And you know why? It's probably because your mom is a slutty slut! - Keep going.
- I don't care what you say.
Bob Barker is not your father! Okay, now, well, that's just not cool.
Oh my Bod, Barney, I'm so sorry No, I'm kidding Keep going.
Bob Barker's not your father! You've concocted this delusional idea that a game show host Is your real father, and he's not! You were abandoned, Barney! You were abandoned, and you never dealt with it, and so now you never allow yourself to feel anything, and that's how you survive in this corporate world, and if I keep heading down this path, I'm gonna turn into you! And I don't want that! I don't want any of this! This is not why I became a lawyer.
This is not the person that I wanted to be.
I quit, Arthur! I quit! Well, thank you, Eriksen, I needed to hear that.
Really, 'cause I didn't mean to attack you personally, it's just that I No, no, no, the part where you said, "I quit.
" Now we don't have to pay you a severance package.
Uh, security's gonna rough you up a bit on the way out.
Robin, you dropped a little ice cream Dude! I'm sorry.
Don't blame this on me, Marshall.
I told you to yell at someone beneath you.
The Circle of Screaming is The Chain of Scr Pyramid, the Pyramid of Screaming! The Pyramid of Screaming.
How am I supposed to tell Lily? She supported me through three years of law school, and now is the time when I'm supposed to pay her back.
Now we're gonna lose the apartment.
The place where we were gonna raise our children.
How am I supposed to tell the person who I love more than anything in this world that I've just thrown away our future? Everybody out, everybody out of the new car! Out of the new car! Ted, screaming never solves anything.
And so Marshall finally had to tell Lily what happened.
I'm so sorry.
I just lost it.
But I can fix it.
First thing tomorrow, I'm gonna go in there on my hands and knees and and beg for my job back.
No, you're not.
What? Marshall, our future isn't money or an apartment.
And it's definitely not you being miserable at that horrible job.
I'm just happy to have my husband back.
We'll figure the rest out.
I love you.
I love you, too.
Ultimately, they were able to make ends meet without going bust on the apartment.
- You sure about this? - Yeah.
Who needs a car in New York City, right? - Ted, I don't think I can accept - Marshall, don't make me scream at you.
Thanks a lot, buddy.
- You guys did it in the car, didn't - Oh yeah! Definitely this one