"Polk Defeats Truman"

Episode #2.06
Original Airdate 11/16/1999
Written by
Directed by James Burrows
Transcript by Rob Durfee

Eric McCormack (Will Truman)
Debra Messing (Grace Adler)
Sean Hayes (Jack McFarland)
Megan Mullally (Karen Walker)

Gary Grubbs (Harlin Polk)
Elaine Bromka (Shopper)

SCENE I: Will's Apartment
(JACK is in the kitchen cooking while GRACE waits at the table.)

JACK: [TO GRACE] Psst! I think I've done it. By adding just a pinch of boblano, I've taken my recipe for Garlic Jazz, brought it south of the border, thereby creating Baja Jazz! Shall we?


GRACE: This must be what bad breath tastes like.

JACK: Must be all that jazz.

WILL: [ENTERING] Everybody dance now! [DANCING AND SINGING] Dum duh dum duh dowt. Whoo!

GRACE: Those hips say someone had a good meeting with Harlin today.

JACK: That song says somebody hasn't been to a club in about 10 years.

WILL: I just closed the deal for Harlin to buy a cable company, which means, as his attorney, that I am now 10% of rolling in it!

GRACE: Wow! Congratulations! And I thought I was havin' a good day 'cause a shishlach vendor hit on me.

JACK: Grace, this isn't about you. Will and I are rich! [TO WILL] I think the first thing you're gonna buy me are colored contacts. I need new eyes for fall.

WILL: Come on, Jack. You know the old saying: give Jack a fish, he eats for a day. Teach Jack to fish, he brings home a fisherman. Is it warm in here, or what time is it? [HOLDS HIS WATCH IN FRONT OF GRACE'S FACE]

GRACE: Oh...my god.

WILL: Hmm?

GRACE: That's not a "folex." [NOTICING THE SWEATER] Oh, my god! This is not cashmere with a "k"!

WILL: No. That's cashmere with a "cash," as in, "I have tons of it!"

GRACE: Ok, Will, you know that I'm happy for you, but remember there is a line between being enthusiastic and being obnoxious. I call that line "Richard Simmons."

WILL: You're right. You're right. I've gotta stay true to myself and not let this go to my head. Speaking of which... [SINGING] Everybody dance now! [WILL AND JACK DANCE] Dum duh dum duh dowt.


SCENE II: Grace's Office
(KAREN is at her desk as GRACE enters.)

GRACE: Ok, so I'm at the ATM trying to get 20 bucks to get us some coffee, and it spits out this piece of paper that says, "Funds not available." So I'm, like, "I don't think so." And the guy who lives under the envelope table starts giggling at me. Anyway, I stick my card back in, and this time, it eats my card and tells me that I'm thousands of dollars overdrawn. Thousands!

KAREN: So... No coffee?

GRACE: No. No coffee. No ATM card. No money. And the worst part of it is the bank has me on video going like this... "What the..." [TO HERSELF] Think. How could this happen? There must be an explanation.

KAREN: Well, now, I just cashed all those little checks you've been givin' me. Could that be it?

GRACE: Your paychecks?


GRACE: You cashed your paychecks? [GRACE OPENS THE NOW EMPTY BOX ON KAREN'S DESK] What? Are you insane? I thought we had an understanding: you don't do any work, and in return, you don't cash your paychecks!

KAREN: Honey, I had to! Stan put me on a... budget. Ew! That word! I guess it was that hat that I bought last week that pushed him over.

GRACE: Wait. Stan got upset because you bought a hat?

KAREN: Well, the hat was in Geneva, and it wasn't really a hat. It was a ski lodge. Oops.

GRACE: Oh, my god. Oh, my god. Ok... Maybe we can help each other out here. How much does Stan want to give you?

KAREN: He actually expects me to live... on this! [KAREN GIVES GRACE A PIECE OF PAPER.]

GRACE: [SIGHS] Karen, I think you can learn to live on this. I mean, Spain does, so...

KAREN: Grace, they wear tires on their feet! I wear Manolo Blahniks.

GRACE: Ok, I'll tell you what. Karen, my friend, you put that money back into my corporate account, and I will teach you how to live on a budget.

KAREN: [POINTING TO GRACE'S OUTFIT] If this is what it means to live on a budget, then... [BEAT] Oh, what the hell. Oh... But I'm tellin' ya right now, you start throwin' around words like "Thom McCann" and "Red Lobster," and the deal is off.



KAREN: Hey, if I'm not gettin' paid--

GRACE: [ANSWERING PHONE] Grace Adler Designs.


WILL: [INTO PHONE] Hey, I gotta cancel lunch.

GRACE: [INTO PHONE] Why? What are you gonna buy now, a goat?

WILL: [INTO PHONE] What? Why a goat?

GRACE: [INTO PHONE] It was a joke. I mean, it's like you already have everything else, so the only thing left would be...a goat.

WILL: [INTO PHONE] That isn't really a joke.

GRACE: [INTO PHONE] Ok, it was a bad joke, Will.

WILL: [INTO PHONE] No. I gotta say it isn't a joke at all. I mean, it doesn't fit any of the joke criteria. A--it doesn't make sense, and b--there's nothing funny about it.

GRACE: [INTO PHONE] Ok, we're done with this. Why are you blowing me off?

WILL: [INTO PHONE] I mean, maybe the word "goat" is funny.


WILL: [INTO PHONE] Well, I gotta let some clients go, and it may take a while.

GRACE: [INTO PHONE] Why are you doing that? 'Cause of the Harlin thing?

WILL: [INTO PHONE] Well, yeah. He's 90% of my business now, and I've gotta devote all my energy to him. So, you know, time to trim a little fat.

GRACE: [INTO PHONE] And by fat, you mean the people who took a chance on you when you were nobody and stuck by you through the good times and bad?

WILL: [INTO PHONE] Yeah, fat.

GRACE: [INTO PHONE] I think I liked you better when you were dissing my goat joke.

WILL: [INTO PHONE] It wasn't a joke. Good-baa-ye.


SCENE III: Will's Office
(WILL is having a chat with JACK)

WILL: I've gotta let some clients go today, and I figured since you've been fired more than anyone, it kinda makes you an expert.

JACK: Actually, I've been fired from any job I've ever had.

WILL: What I figure is, they come in and I--

JACK: No, no, no, uneducated Rita. No. Not here. You can't do it here. They'll start weeping and wailing, even spitting, and the next thing you know, security has to come remove me from the office.

WILL: You mean my client.

JACK: Yeah, that's what I said. Anyway, here's what you do: you call them up, ask them what their favorite lunch place is, ok? You're in public, so less chance of a scene. Then you sit them down, order them a happy meal, and can their ass. [DING] Whoo!

WILL: A McFiring. Favorite lunch place-- That's not a bad idea.

JACK: Yeah. That's how the library did it. And my boss at the Swiss Colony. [BEAT] And Nana... [WILL HANDS JACK A TISSUE]


SCENE IV: Wills Apartment
(WILL is lounging; GRACE enters)

GRACE: What have you done? Aunt Honey just called me in tears!

WILL: Hey, I'm not the one that named her Aunt Honey.

GRACE: You should have heard her. "Will won't be my lawyer anymore. I made him a cocoa fopurum, and he drops me like a hahachuam?"

WILL: A ha-hachu-what?

GRACE: She was crying so hard I didn't catch the last word. How could you?

WILL: Grace, you knew this was happening. I just don't have time for these kind of people anymore.

GRACE: "These kind of people"?

WILL: Grace, it's just business. When I'm trying to close a multimillion-dollar deal, I can't be fielding calls from a woman who wants to sue Entenmanns because she gained 6 pounds on their fat-free coffee cake.

GRACE: Ok, I get it now. If they don't bring in the cash, you just get rid of them, willy-nilly.

WILL: I told you never to call me that.

GRACE: You know, you used to care about people now you're just like a bad lawyer joke, like, "How many lawyers does it take to screw in a light bulb? 2--one to screw it in, and the other to--" Wait. "3--" Wait. I mean-- Why can't I tell a joke today?

WILL: I'm sorry that you can't understand it, but this is the way business works.

GRACE: Not my business.

WILL: That's because your job is shopping for pillows and tassels. My God, a gay guy could do your job in his sleep.

GRACE: Whoa. You know, just because you are becoming the incarnation of pure evil does not give you permission to take it out on me.

WILL: I'm just trying to do whatever it takes to make my business go from here to here. [MOVING HIS HAND LOW TO HIGH]

GRACE: Yeah, and as a result, your morality has gone from here to here. [MOVING HER HAND FROM HIGH TO LOW]

WILL: It's funny. My interest in this conversation just went from here to here! [MOVING HIS HAND FROM HIGH TO THE FLOOR]

GRACE: And your lips can go from here to here. [MOVING HER HAND FROM WILL'S LIPS TO HER BUTT.]




GRACE: [INTO PHONE] Hey, Will, it's Harlin.

WILL: [INTO PHONE] Hey, Harlin.

HARLIN: [INTO PHONE] I was wonderin' if you got any free time tomorrow. I'd like to get together.

WILL: [INTO PHONE] Harlin, for my number-one client, I've got nothing but time.

HARLIN: [INTO PHONE] Good. Good. What's your favorite lunch place?



WILL: [INTO PHONE] And finally, Harlin, I just don't want to see you make a big mistake.

HARLIN: [INTO PHONE] Will, you know I like you, but I've moved on to a different level now. I need someone bigger. It's not personal. It's strictly business.

WILL: [INTO PHONE] I understand that, a-a-and I know you said your mind's made up--

HARLIN: [INTO PHONE] It is. My mind's made up.

WILL: [INTO PHONE] Right. Right. But imagine just for a second that it isn't.

HARLIN: [INTO PHONE] Well, in order to do that, I would have to use my mind, and my mind's made up.

WILL: [INTO PHONE] Well, I guess there's just no arguing with frontier logic. All right. That's-- That's your decision, and I have to respect it.

HARLIN: [INTO PHONE] Thank you, Will. I'm gonna have to send you a copy of Tuesdays with Morrie. Really makes you grateful for what you have. See ya, pardner.


JACK: [ENTERING, SINGING] We're in the money, we're in the money, we got a lot of-- [NOTICES WILL'S EXPRESSION AND SIGHS] What?


JACK: How could you let yourself get fired? Ohh!

WILL: Just breathe, Jack.

JACK: But where am I to go from here, Will? What's to become of me? I don't think I can handle this anymore!

WILL: Jack! I'm the one that just lost my biggest client. I'm the one that got fired. Me. Remember?

JACK: Oh, sure. It's always about you, isn't it? What am I supposed to do? Who's going to pay for my gym membership? I've got parachute pants on layaway. And the food, the food... God, I'm giddy from hunger!

GRACE: [ENTERING] And another thing. When you said a gay guy could do my job in his sleep, what I should have said was I know one gay guy. I don't know how he sleeps. Ha! Finally broke that joke jinx, huh?

WILL: Run along, Shecky. I've had a bad day. Ok?

GRACE: Aww, Will's had a bad day. What happened? Did you crush someone and they got stuck in your Gucci sandals? Aww!

WILL: Grace, I'm really not in the mood for this.

GRACE: I don't care. You're going to listen to me. You may be on top of the world right now, but there is a thing called karma, and one of these days, it's going to come back, and it's gonna bite you on the ass. And when it does, I'm going to be standing over you singing the told you so song. Oh, how's that go again? [SING-SONG] Told you so, told you so, told ya, told ya, told ya so.

JACK: Mother of God, make her stop.

GRACE: Look, all I'm saying, Will, is you better pray that Harlin never leaves you--

JACK: [CRYING] Oh, my god! Harlin!

WILL: [INTERRUPTING JACK] Jack! Jack, Jack. [TO GRACE] Look, Harlin is not going to leave me. Harlin loves me, and together, we're going to make a lot of money! Now, have I introduced you to my door?

GRACE: I hope you're right, Will. 'Cause you know that told you so song? It comes with a special dance. Here's a little preview. [WILL SLAMS THE DOOR IN HER FACE.]


SCENE V: Grace's Office
(GRACE is helping KAREN, off-screen, with her budget.)


GRACE: Ok, Karen, this is working. By consolidating all your credit cards and turning the remaining one into a travel card, you save on interest and travel expenses. And that works out to a savings of... [ADDING MACHINE TAPE RUNNING] Voilą! [LOOKS AROUND] Karen?

KAREN: [ENTERING, CARRYING SHOPPING BAGS] Oh, that felt good. Ohh, boy! Ahh!

GRACE: Where did you go?

KAREN: Well, all your yap-yap-yapping about budgets was bringing me down, so I popped into Irnez and told 'em to give me $5,000 worth of anything! Ha ha ha!

GRACE: Karen, I'm trying to help you. Look, I know-- I know it's scary, but I promise you, once you get into the swing of things, it's actually kind of fun.

KAREN: You know what else is kind of fun? Tuning you out.

GRACE: Ok, then. No one can say you didn't give it a good effort. So, uh, want to show me what you got?

KAREN: Sure! Look at this cute little sweater set. Ohh, isn't this just delicious? Ohh!


GRACE: Oh, gosh, the color is just yummy! Oh, my god, and the fabric, it's just-- [GRACE GRABS A PAIR OF SCISSORS AND HOLDS THEM UP TO THE SWEATER]


GRACE: You do the budget, or the kid gets it.

KAREN: [GASPING] Aah--! You wouldn't dare!

GRACE: Oh, wouldn't I?

KAREN: No! You kill one piece, and the whole ensemble dies!

GRACE: Maybe I'll just start with the label.

KAREN: No, honey! That's the best part! No!

GRACE: [HUMMING JAWS THEME] Da-da. Da-da. Da-na-na-na-na-na

KAREN: Ok, ok, ok, ok, ok! What do you want? What are you talking about? What are your terms?

GRACE: You sit down for 5 minutes and go over this budget with me.

KAREN: You're just lucky I let my kids take the pepper spray to school for show and tell.

GRACE: Thatagirl. Ok. Let's talk about clothes. You spent thousands of dollars in the Madison Avenue boutiques. Do you know how much you'd save if you just shopped at that outlet mall in Paramus?

KAREN: Hmm. Honey, do you know how many things are wrong with that sentence?

GRACE: I am serious. I mean it.

KAREN: No, no, no, no. Uh-uh! If you expect me to shop out of a bin with a bunch of mall-walking blue-hairs in "I Love Grandma" t-shirts, then you got another thing--

GRACE: You know what? This looks like it's my size. I think I'm going to go try it on.



SCENE VI: The Outlet Mall, Designer Markdowns
(GRACE and KAREN are shopping!)

KAREN: Lordy, lordy, look at all the freaks. Come on. Let's get out of here. There's nothing here I like.

GRACE: Uh-uh, uh-uh, uh-uh, no. You haven't even looked yet. Come on. You got to get in there and sort through the rack.

KAREN: The what?

GRACE: The rack. You heard the expression "off the rack."

KAREN: I know the expression "Stan, hands off the rack." Ha ha ha! Bang bang! Ohh. Even in the Midwest I'm funny.

GRACE: Come on, Karen, dig in. You look really hard, you can find some really great-- Ok, this one's got blood on it. Ok, why don't we just move on to the hemoglobin-free zone?

KAREN: Honey, the fabrics scare me!

GRACE: Come on. Karen, you got to get into the spirit of it. I've found some really cute outfits here. I wear them to work, and you tell me how much you hate them. [IMITATING KAREN] Honey, what's going on? What's happening? What's all this about?

KAREN: Honey, what's this? What are you doing? Who's that supposed to be?

GRACE: Come on. We're not leaving till you try something on.

KAREN: [TOUCHING A BLOUSE] Ow! Oh, it's-- [TO A WOMAN PASSING BY] Oh, hey, honey! Can we get a couple of shirr dahi salads with honey mustard on the side?

WOMAN: I don't work here.

KAREN: That wasn't my question, was it? Was it?

GRACE: [TO KAREN] Ok. Ok, here we go. Here we go. This is perfect for you. [HOLDING UP A BLOUSE TO KAREN] It's your color, it's your size, and it's only $28. Hmm?

KAREN: Yeah. That's a great price. Uh, would just excuse me for one second, Grace? [DIALING HER CELL PHONE] Stan. Hi, honey, it's me. Yes, I'm at Designer Markdowns in Paramus, uh-huh. Oh, the budget thing's fine. Yeah, I'm just about to buy a rhinestone-studded track suit. I thought I'd wear it when we go boating with the Bronfmans. Mm-hmm. Ok. Ok. Bye-bye. [HANGS UP; TO GRACE] Stan's sending the helicopter. Budget crisis over. Ok, Grace, buy yourself a little ugly for work tomorrow. I'll be on the roof.


HARLIN: Grace?!

GRACE: Harlin! Hi.

HARLIN: Hello.

GRACE: What are you doing here?

HARLIN: Buying something for the missus.

GRACE: See, Harlin, that's what I love about you. No matter how much money you have, you're still humble enough to appreciate a good bargain.

HARLIN: Oh, not this piece of crap. I'm buying her the whole damn mall! So, uh, how is Will doing?

GRACE: I think you'd know better than anyone.

HARLIN: Yeah. Yeah, I do.

GRACE: But don't worry, I'm on him. I'm giving him a really hard time.

HARLIN: Whoa! You're a cold-hearted little thing, aren't you?

GRACE: Well, you know, I mean, if he's going to let work get to him like that, it-- it's--it's just so unattractive. I mean, even I don't want to be around him.

HARLIN: You know, Grace, I don't presume to understand the very modern relationship you two got going, but in the great state of Texas, you'd be considered a bitch.

GRACE: Ha! Excuse me?

HARLIN: I just think a person ought to show a little more compassion when a friend gets fired.

GRACE: What?


SCENE VII: Will's Apartment
(WILL is sitting around as GRACE enters.)


WILL: Hey!

GRACE: How was work?

WILL: Oh, it's good. It's always good.

GRACE: Busy?

WILL: Oh, you know, you can't imagine. Harlin is working me to the bones. Meetings with investors, conference calls, contracts. At one point, it got so crazy, I said herewith when I meant notwithstanding. I don't know how much longer I can keep up this pace. What?

GRACE: I ran into Harlin today.

WILL: Oh? He's still not pulling that practical joke where he pretends like he's fired me? Did he? He's so funny with that.

GRACE: Will.

WILL: Ok. You were right. It came back to bite me in the ass. I'm a jerk, ok? I got too full of myself, I got too hung up on the money, so go ahead, Grace, give me the whole thing. Give me the whole told you so song and dance. [GRACE HUGS WILL] Not even a told ya? Huh. Starting over. I'm a little bit scared here.

GRACE: I'm not. Sit down. I've got a joke for you.

WILL: Oh, no. No.

GRACE: Come on! Come on! Come on. Come on. Sit down. Ready? How many gay lawyers does it take to win a case?

WILL: How many?

GRACE: 37. One to win the case and 36 to go out to brunch and trash him. Ahh! Ahh! I see a little smile! I see a little smile! That counts! That makes it official. Joke!