01x07 - Call Me When You Get There

(Adult Adam) Back in the '80s, you had cars that could travel through time, cars that caught ghosts, and cars that could talk to David Hasselhoff.

So when my brother Barry got his license...

He was finally free!

(Starts engine)

Aah! Oh!

Unfortunately, with my mom, you're never free.

Tush inside. Now.

What the hell?

Are you just sitting back there waiting for me?

Yes. Tush!

Rule number seven...

Total focus on the road.

No eating, no passengers, no music.


No music.

Rule number eight...

Doors must be locked and windows rolled up at all times.

All times.

That's insane!

Which brings us to number nine... you only drive in safe areas.

That means...

Stay within the green zone.

You got a map with plastic overlays?

Who does that?

I do.

And rule number ten, and this is the most important rule...

Call me when you get there.

Always call me when you get there.

Why do I have to call you when I get there?

I'm there. I know I'm there.

But I don't know. For all I know, you could be stranded in the middle of nowhere, lying facedown in a ditch.

Do the dishes, damn it!

Ditches, okay?!

You're just blindly agreeing with her and have no idea what she's even talking about.

Oh, oh, I know what she's talking about.

Right there. Learn your state capitals.

But you're too much a a big shot to study.

Let me tell you somethin', mister.

College is right around the corner, and you need to shape up or ship out.

We're talking about her stupid driving rules, dad.

Can you stick up for me here? For once? Please?

And for the first time, my father actually took my brother's side.

(Bell dings) No.

(Laughs) No, wait. That never happened.

The amount of suck in this room is unreal!

I'm going to the movies.

Call me when you get there!

But out of principle, Barry did not call when he got there because he knew that out in the world, he was beyond my mother's reach.

(Man) Barry Goldberg?

Is there a Barry Goldberg here? (Movie playing indistinctly)

Barry Goldberg?

Shh! Um, yeah?

You need to call your mother and tell her you arrived here safely.

She's very worried, dude. Not cool.



(I fight dragons)

♪ I'm twisted up inside ♪
♪ but nonetheless I feel the need to say ♪
♪ I don't know the future ♪
♪ but the past keeps getting clearer every day ♪

It was October 18th, 1980-something, and my sister and I were watching the most entertaining thing we'd ever seen... my dad trying to work the VCR.

Every time it ended like this.

The damn thing's broken!

It's not broken. Just let me do it.


I'm tired of coming to you for this every single time I work late.

All right? Gotta do it myself.

"Teach a man to fish." You ever heard that saying?

You promised to teach me to fish two birthdays ago.

Stop aggravating me! This is important!

The Phillies are in the world series!

It might be another century before this happens again.

Dad, you've been messing with that for ten minutes.

Just let Adam do it.

No. Hey.

Just give me the remote. Give me the remote.

Here. Let me do this.

The hell?

It's covered in buttons! Covered!

Don't bother with the buttons. Use the voice command.

Right, Erica?

Right. Um, it's new.

Just hold the remote and speak into the top.


Record world series.


Get your lips closer, dad.

Oh, I see. R-right there.

(Loudly) Record.



It's not identifying your voice. You gotta say your name.

My name is...



(Adam and Erica laughing)

Like it understands him.

All right.

Just record the damn game.


(Panting) Where is she?

Where's the woman who gave me life and nothing more, huh?

Whoa, whoa, stop. I've been waiting for you, and we need to talk.

Busy. I gotta kill mom.

Um, no. You're coming with me.

Leave me alone, or so help me God... Ow! Ow! Ow! Ow! Ow!

Ow! Ow! Ow!

Why'd you have to purple my nurple?

This doesn't involve you.

Of course it does!

Mom was freaking out all day because you didn't call her when you got there.

And when she goes into worry mode, she tightens the clamps on me, too.

You almost blew my whole system.

What system?

The system where I ignore all of her driving rules and get away with it.


Last week, I went to study at Lainey's house two blocks away, and as always, I called when I got there.

I said, "I'm here, mom."

"We're playing def leppard records and making jiffy pop. Miss you."


So... I was at a def leppard concert...

In New Jersey.

Jersey? That's the red zone.

Damn right it is.

Studying with Lainey was my cover story.

You got a good cover story, and you can do anything you want.

I've even been to Manhattan.

The black zone.

And tomorrow night, guess where I'm going.

Kegger in the woods.

Whoa! That's supposed to be the best party of the year.

And my cover story...

(Singsongy) Band practice.

(Normal voice) I haven't played violin since eighth grade, but she doesn't know that.

No way. Can I join your band?

I have an electric keyboard in my closet.

Get your own thing, idiot.

Pfft. Your loss. It has over 70 rhythm settings.

Has samba, bossa nova, rap, has rock 1, has rock 2...

Stop! It's not a real band, and even if it was, you suck at keyboard.

You suck at everything!

But thanks for the help.

(Gasps) There are my boys!

(Door closes) How was tennis?

Excellent. Once again, the lad and I trounced the ferguson sisters.

Well, I 40-love you both. (Laughs)


Ah. Please don't.

Well, come sit. You've earned yourselves a victory dinner.

I can only stay a few minutes.

I got a date with one of the sisters.

Which one again?


She's the sexy one, right?

I don't know. I don't see what you see.

Oh, dad, before you go, I bought you something life alert... "As seen on TV"

Back in the day, commercials were simple and to the point, especially this classic.

I've fallen, and I can't get up.

Why is no one helping her?

Help her!!

We're sending help immediately, Mrs. Fletcher.

Oh, good, they're coming.

Are you kidding me?

Why don't you get me a sweatshirt which says "I'm old" and send me out to the duck pond to feed the ducks?

Dad, you live alone.

What happens if you fall and you can't get up?

In my whole life, I've never once tripped, slipped, or fallen.

Yeah! This is an insult!

I'm rock solid. Go ahead.

Sock me in the kidney. Do it.

Go ahead, mom. Hit grandpa.

Do it.

I'm not punching you in the kidney, dad.

You don't want it? Fine. Be a burden on your family.

I will.

He will.

(Adult Adam) While my mom had her own strategy to get her way, Barry was gonna use Erica's strategy to get his.

(Lowered voice) Just say what I told you to say.

Don't add anything and don't embellish.

Hey, ma. Listen, I've been thinking, and I wanted to say how sorry I am for not calling you from the theater.

Well, thank you. That's very mature of you.

I appreciate it.

And I appreciate you.

I know I don't say it enough, but... I love you, girl.

(Mouthing words)


Mwah. I'll tell you what.

You're gonna get some extra stir-fry tonight.

Oh, I almost forgot.

Can I go to Roger McFadden's house tomorrow night?

I love Roger McFadden.

I know you do. That's why I chose him...

To teach me Spanish.

We have a quiz.

(Mouths words)

I'll be home at 10:00, which is rule four, if I recall.

And don't worry.

I'll follow all the other rules, too.

That sounds muy bueno.

Roger will cover that with you.

(Engine starts)

(Run-d.M.C.'S "it's tricky" playing)

(Rapping along) ♪ this speech is my recital ♪
♪ I think it's very vital ♪
♪ to rock a rhyme, that's right on time ♪

♪ "It's tricky" is the... ♪

here we go

♪ it's tricky to rock a rhyme, to rock a rhyme ♪
♪ That's right on time, it's tricky ♪
♪ It's tricky, tricky, tricky, oh ♪
♪ It's tricky to rock a rhyme, to rock a rhyme ♪
♪ That's right on time, it's tricky ♪
♪ Tricky, tricky, tricky, tricky ♪

♪ In New York, the people talk and try to make us rhyme ♪
♪ they really hawk but we just walk ♪
♪ because we have no time


♪ And in the city...


My God. Look who made it out of the green zone.

All thanks to you.


Now point me to the phone and we're good to go.

What are you talking about?

Gotta call mom, tell her I arrived safely at "Roger McFadden's house."

There's no phone here.

It's the kegger in the woods. The woods?

Well... there's gotta be a house here somewhere.

I mean, a lumberjack's camp. A ranger's station.

A secret army base.

How deep in the woods do you think we are?

I don't know. This is the orange zone.

I've never gone this far.

Calm down.

You told Roger McFadden all about this, right?

No. Roger went down the shore with his family.

You need him to cover for you in case mom calls his house.

What do you think "Cover story" means?

It means someone to cover for you!

You wanted other people involved?

This is too complicated for me!

You should have just let me join your band!

Dumbass, you're gonna ruin this for the both of us!

Get in your car and drive to a phone now.

(Exhales deeply)

Gotta call my mom, gotta call mom.

Oh, no, no, no.

Damn it! (Starts engine)

I gotta call my mom!

Erica! Help me!

Let's go over there.

Damn it.

Uhh! Why?!

I gotta call my mom! I gotta call my mom!

I gotta call my mom!

I'm home!

Back before e-mails, texts, and tweets, you could go a whole day without spoilers or knowing the score of a game, and now my dad was finally gonna get to watch the most important Phillies game of his lifetime.

(Sighs) All right.

Howard Cosell, give me the sweet stuff. (Remote control clicks)

(Beverly) Murray, turn that TV off!

Or not.

Oh, God.

Barry hasn't called. He's been gone almost an hour.

I called Roger McFadden's house.

No one's answering.

How many times have you called?


When you hit 15, then we'll talk.

So you're just gonna sit here and watch a baseball game when our son might be laying facedown in a ditch somewhere.

Might be. But might not be.

The only thing we know for sure is I'm watching the world series.

How do you sleep at night?

Not as good as I do during the day, but not bad.

Relax. Kid's gonna be fine.

But he wasn't.

It's okay. I can fix this.


Oh! Oh! (Panting)

Okay. All right.

(Continues panting)

(Coins drop)



(Sobbing) I'm at Roger's house!

I got here safely!

(Coins dropping) I love...

While Barry's night was off and running, my grandfather's was just winding down.

Yeah, I'd love for you to stay the night, but, uh...

(Laughs) Turns out I got a meeting first thing in the morning.

Well, I thought you retired ten years ago.

Yeah, well, I still do part-time consulting and the occasional... do you need money for a cab?

What's this?


This is one of those things from the commercial.

Well, you don't wear one of these?

No, no. This is just, uh, it's a gag gift from some of the guys down at the boxing club, and...


Well, this has been fun. I'll call you.

Uh... no.

I'll call you. I-I do the calling.


(Crack) Oh!


Son of a bitch!

Yes, I'm calling to see if my son might have been brought into your emergency room earlier tonight.

Uh, he is 5'8", dark hair, fair skin, beautiful brown eyes.

(Voice breaks) Oh, he was just the sweetest little baby you've ever seen.

(Normal voice) What? No.

Okay, thank you.

(Baseball game playing on TV) Oh!

What is that pitch?! That's garbage!

I hate you, Dickie Noles!

Okay. He's not in the emergency room or the police station or the roller rink or the batting cages or any of the four ice cream shops in the green zone, and I have failed as a mother.

You're good at other things.

(Telephone rings)



No, it's... it's just me, darling.

Your line's been busy for quite a while now, and I... can't talk now!

Damn it!

(Dial tone)

I can't take it anymore. Go out and find our baby, Murray.

Please! If I go out, I'll find out what happened in the game!

Enough with the baseball. What is wrong with you?

Why aren't you worried? He's out there.

He could be injured or cold or hungry.

What if he has to make? He doesn't use public bathrooms!

Bevy, calm down, okay?

Every time our kids leave the house, you assume that they're dead until they prove otherwise.

Know that they're smart, responsible kids.

Assume that they're alive.

That's the stupidest thing you've ever said!

I'll see you in a bit.

(Telephone rings)




No, it's not Barry. It's me. Put Adam on the phone.

Adam, get in here, talk to your grandfather so he'll stop tying up the line! (Door opens)

Make it quick.

Yeah, pops?

While pops was looking for a little help, my dad was out looking for Barry, and he was growing increasingly worried that he'd find out what happened in the game.


(Man on radio) Quite an emotional night for Phillies fans...

Whoa, whoa, whoa!

Whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa!

(Turns radio off)

(Adult Adam) If my dad didn't find Barry soon, my brother was gonna pay.

Excuse me, officer.

Did you see a high school kid driving around here?

Curly hair, kind of lumpy?

No, but there's a party in the woods down by alverthorpe park.


Hey, Phillies! Man, how about... (Horn blaring)

No, no, no!

I just wanna watch the world series!

I'm gonna kill that kid!

Pops? Pops!

Over here!

What happened?

I have fallen...

And I... cannot get up.

There you go.

Easy. Little more.

Whoa! Pull your robe down.

It's a kimono.

Pull your kimono down.

It's designed to be showy.

Well, it's working.

Just don't look down!

What did I just see? It was like a Robin's nest!

It's an unflattering angle.

What's going on down there?

Stop looking down and get me to the couch already!

Oh! Oh! Okay.

You good?

Yeah, okay. I'm... I'm good now.

Thanks for dropping by, kid.

Are you sure you're good?

Of course. Like you even need to ask.

It's just that you said that you never fell before.

I threw my back out. It could happen to anyone.


So what do you wanna do with this?

Chuck it!

I get it. This thing might be embarrassing, but... no more embarrassing than that robe.

For the second time that night, I saw a part of my grandfather.

I'd never seen before... the part that was actually vulnerable.

Stop! Stop! Please!

(Horn honking) Stop! Sto... uhh!

Stop! Stop!

I need your CB radio to call my mom so she knows I'm safe!

(Horn blaring) No, no, no, no!


(Horn continues blaring)


My dad had spent the last hour driving all over town.

(Engine turns off) Just as he was starting to think my mom's craziness may not have been so crazy, he spotted a familiar jacket...

Oh. Hi.

And a familiar jackass.

You couldn't have been sitting up in a ditch?

Or reclining comfortably in a ditch?

No, you had to be facedown, exactly like she said!

And to think I told your mom you could be trusted, mostly 'cause I wanted to watch the game.

But you know what? A small part of me actually thought, "Hey, he's not a complete moron."

Only some of this happened 'cause I'm a complete moron.

The rest is 'cause of mom's stupid rules.

Hey, her rules are there to protect you.

I almost died when I saw your jacket in the road.

You worry about me, too?

Oh, don't put words in my mouth.

Of course I do.

Your mom can't know anything about this.

What? You're gonna lie to mom?

Absolutely! She finds out about this, you're not gonna be allowed to leave the house until you're 40, and then my life is ruined, too!

Nice! I'm off the hook, then.

You are so grounded. Secretly, though.

You will choose to stay in every weekend for the next three months, and for the love of God, when I do let you back out in the world, you will call me when you get there.

I will. I promise.

(Indistinct conversations)

(Horn honks)

(Girl screams in distance)

I was throwing that for a friend.

And tell your stupid sister that she's secretly grounded, too.

Thanks for being so cool about this.

I thought you'd be in the worst mood after the Phillies lost.

Get out.

Lie down.

I'm gonna run you over.

("It's tricky" resumes playing)

♪ It's tricky to rock around, to rock around ♪

And so my brother crammed three months of partying into one epic night of awesome.

As for pops, he was starting to realize it wasn't so bad to give up a piece of his freedom for his family's peace of mind.

Still got it.

So he's waiting for the tow truck, he stays in the car, rule number three...

Ultimately it wasn't my mom's elaborate rules that put her at ease...

And listen to this.

He's over at Roger McFadden's studying right now...

It was my dad's elaborate lies.

He is such a great kid.

Knowing it was their last night of freedom, Barry and Erica made every moment count...

♪ It's tricky to rock around ♪

and it was glorious... until the cops raided the place five minutes later.

♪ Tr-tr-tr-tr-tr ♪

That's a new "Knight Rider" on tonight. Mind if I tape it?

No! Um, as a matter of fact, why don't you use, uh, the new voice command?

For real?

Yeah, for real. Tell it your name.

Hi. I'm Barry Goldberg.

Now, uh, tell it to do something.

Remote, turn to "Knight Rider."

(Tires screech)

Huh. That's pretty cool.

Wait a minute. Did it? Give it to me a second here.

Uh... go back to "TJ Hooker."

No, wrong way!

"TJ Hooker"! Tell it to go back to "TJ Hooker."

No, you tell it.

All right, remote, this is Murray... Goldberg.

Please go back to "TJ Hooker."

(Channel changes) No!

Wrong way!

You know "TJ Hooker," with William shatner.

(Under breath) And he fell for it again.

Hooker! TJ!