Driftwood (Groucho): All right, fine. Now here are the contracts. You just put his name at the top and you sign at the bottom. There’s no need of you reading that because these are duplicates.
Fiorello (Chico): Yeah, they’s a duplicates.
Driftwood: I say they’re duplicates.
Fiorello: Why sure they’s a duplicates…
Driftwood: Don’t you know what duplicates are?
Fiorello: Sure. There’s five kids up in Canada.

I spent a great deal of time when I was a kid watching black and white comedies–Laurel and Hardy, Charlie Chaplin, the Marx Brothers.  With the exception of the Three Stooges (a lesser Marx Brothers) and Abbott and Costello (a much lesser Laurel and Hardy), I loved all of them.  What’s stuck with me most though, and what sprung into my head as I was walking across the Brooklyn Bridge on my way to work this morning, was the dialogue of the Marx Brothers.

Perhaps its because we’re closing on a seriously confusing financing instrument this week at work, but this scene from “A Night at the Opera” won’t leave me alone.  Now this is how you negotiate a contract!  Watch and learn, people.  Watch; and learn.

Advertisements