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Argument Clinic / Hitting on the Head Lessons

The cast:

MAN
Michael Palin
RECEPTIONIST
Rita Davies
MR. BARNARD
Graham Chapman
MR. VIBRATING
John Cleese
COMPLAINER
Eric Idle
SPREADERS
Terry Jones

The sketch:

Man: Ah. I'd like to have an argument, please.

Receptionist: Certainly sir. Have you been here before?

Man: No, I haven't, this is my first time.

Receptionist: I see. Well, do you want to have just one argument, or were you thinking of taking a course?

Man: Well, what is the cost?

Receptionist: Well, It's one pound for a five minute argument, but only eight pounds for a course of ten.

Man: Well, I think it would be best if I perhaps started off with just the one and then see how it goes.

Receptionist: Fine. Well, I'll see who's free at the moment.

(Pause)

Receptionist: Mr. DeBakey's free, but he's a little bit conciliatory. Ahh yes, Try Mr. Barnard; room 12.

Man: Thank you.

(Walks down the hall. Opens door.)

Mr. Barnard: WHAT DO YOU WANT?

Man: Well, I was told outside that...

Mr. Barnard: Don't give me that, you snotty-faced heap of parrot droppings!

Man: What?

Mr. Barnard: Shut your festering gob, you tit! Your type really makes me puke, you vacuous, coffee-nosed, malodorous, pervert!!!

Man: Look, I CAME HERE FOR AN ARGUMENT, I'm not going to just stand...!!

Mr. Barnard: OH, oh I'm sorry, but this is abuse.

Man: Oh, I see, well, that explains it.

Mr. Barnard: Ah yes, you want room 12A, Just along the corridor.

Man: Oh, Thank you very much. Sorry.

Mr. Barnard: Not at all.

Man: Thank You. (Under his breath) Stupid git!!

(Walk down the corridor)

Man: (Knock)

Mr. Vibrating: Come in.

Man: Ah, Is this the right room for an argument?

Mr. Vibrating: I told you once.

Man: No you haven't.

Mr. Vibrating: Yes I have.

Man: When?

Mr. Vibrating: Just now.

Man: No you didn't.

Mr. Vibrating: Yes I did.

Man: You didn't

Mr. Vibrating: I did!

Man: You didn't!

Mr. Vibrating: I'm telling you I did!

Man: You did not!!

Mr. Vibrating: Oh, I'm sorry, just one moment. Is this a five minute argument or the full half hour?

Man: Oh, just the five minutes.

Mr. Vibrating: Ah, thank you. Anyway, I did.

Man: You most certainly did not.

Mr. Vibrating: Look, let's get this thing clear; I quite definitely told you.

Man: No you did not.

Mr. Vibrating: Yes I did.

Man: No you didn't.

Mr. Vibrating: Yes I did.

Man: No you didn't.

Mr. Vibrating: Yes I did.

Man: No you didn't.

Mr. Vibrating: Yes I did.

Man: You didn't.

Mr. Vibrating: Did.

Man: Oh look, this isn't an argument.

Mr. Vibrating: Yes it is.

Man: No it isn't. It's just contradiction.

Mr. Vibrating: No it isn't.

Man: It is!

Mr. Vibrating: It is not.

Man: Look, you just contradicted me.

Mr. Vibrating: I did not.

Man: Oh you did!!

Mr. Vibrating: No, no, no.

Man: You did just then.

Mr. Vibrating: Nonsense!

Man: Oh, this is futile!

Mr. Vibrating: No it isn't.

Man: I came here for a good argument.

Mr. Vibrating: No you didn't; no, you came here for an argument.

Man: An argument isn't just contradiction.

Mr. Vibrating: It can be.

Man: No it can't. An argument is a connected series of statements intended to establish a proposition.

Mr. Vibrating: No it isn't.

Man: Yes it is! It's not just contradiction.

Mr. Vibrating: Look, if I argue with you, I must take up a contrary position.

Man: Yes, but that's not just saying 'No it isn't.'

Mr. Vibrating: Yes it is!

Man: No it isn't!

Man: Argument is an intellectual process. Contradiction is just the automatic gainsaying of any statement the other person makes.

(short pause)

Mr. Vibrating: No it isn't.

Man: It is.

Mr. Vibrating: Not at all.

Man: Now look.

Mr. Vibrating: (Rings bell) Good Morning.

Man: What?

Mr. Vibrating: That's it. Good morning.

Man: I was just getting interested.

Mr. Vibrating: Sorry, the five minutes is up.

Man: That was never five minutes!

Mr. Vibrating: I'm afraid it was.

Man: It wasn't.

(Pause)

Mr. Vibrating: I'm sorry, but I'm not allowed to argue anymore.

Man: What?!

Mr. Vibrating: If you want me to go on arguing, you'll have to pay for another five minutes.

Man: Yes, but that was never five minutes, just now. Oh come on!

Mr. Vibrating: (Hums)

Man: Look, this is ridiculous.

Mr. Vibrating: I'm sorry, but I'm not allowed to argue unless you've paid!

Man: Oh, all right.

(pays money)

Mr. Vibrating: Thank you. (short pause)

Man: Well?

Mr. Vibrating: Well what?

Man: That wasn't really five minutes, just now.

Mr. Vibrating: I told you, I'm not allowed to argue unless you've paid.

Man: I just paid!

Mr. Vibrating: No you didn't.

Man: I DID!

Mr. Vibrating: No you didn't.

Man: Look, I don't want to argue about that.

Mr. Vibrating: Well, you didn't pay.

Man: Aha. If I didn't pay, why are you arguing? I Got you!

Mr. Vibrating: No you haven't.

Man: Yes I have. If you're arguing, I must have paid.

Mr. Vibrating: Not necessarily. I could be arguing in my spare time.

Man: Oh I've had enough of this.

Mr. Vibrating: No you haven't.

Man: Oh Shut up.

(Walks down the stairs. Opens door.)

Man: I want to complain.

Complainer: You want to complain! Look at these shoes. I've only had them three weeks and the heels are worn right through.

Man: No, I want to complain about...

Complainer: If you complain nothing happens, you might as well not bother.

Man: Oh!

Complainer: Oh my back hurts, it's not a very fine day and I'm sick and tired of this office.

(Slams door. walks down corridor, opens next door.)

Man: Hello, I want to... Ooooh!

Spreaders: No, no, no. Hold your head like this, then go Waaah. Try it again.

Man: uuuwwhh!!

Spreaders: Better, Better, but Waah, Waah! Put your hand there.

Man: No.

Spreaders: Now..

Man: Waaaaah!!!

Spreaders: Good, Good! That's it.

Man: Stop hitting me!!

Spreaders: What?

Man: Stop hitting me!!

Spreaders: Stop hitting you?

Man: Yes!

Spreaders: Why did you come in here then?

Man: I wanted to complain.

Spreaders: Oh no, that's next door. It's being-hit-on-the-head lessons in here.

Man: What a stupid concept.

(Detective Inspector Fox enters.)

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