Director: Lights, Cue Applause, Recording....
Marshall: (Monologue) People love to make a mountain out of a mole hill. They just can't leave well enough alone! Remember Y2K? Or how about the flesh-eating virus? I'm starting to believe the Rocky Mountains aren't a natural phenomenon but were born out of the interminable bitching and whining of Los Angeleans.
Today's mole hill is "the billable hour."
To give us better perspective on this raging controversy, I've invited a very special guest to our show. Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome Mrs. Billable Hour.
Marshall: First let me say that I would've liked to have had your husband on the show. I understand, however, that he was forcibly removed by security from Cravath Swaine and Moore and chased home by a torch-wielding mob which is currently holding vigil on your front lawn.
Mrs. Billable Hour: (Crying) That's right, Marshall. It's despicable. My husband is such a good guy. He has always been straight-forward and fair. Unfortunately, he became very popular, very fast. People always hate the popular guy. Suddenly, this economic crisis hit and he's become the scapegoat for problems that were truly created by the policies of the partners at the big law firms. Everyone's turned on him. It's heartbreaking.
Marshall: Sounds like what happened to Sarah Palin. The GOP cherry-picked her for her charm and simplicity. They dolled her up, put her on display and now that Obama's in, they're pointing the finger at her for losing the election.
Mrs. Billable Hour: Precisely.
Marshall: So what do you believe lead to your husband's downfall?
Mrs. Billable Hour: It's hard to say. It was probably that Judas, Scott Turow. His article in the 2007 ABA Journal created quite a stir. Whatever comes out of a celebrity's mouth is gospel. Tom Cruise says the earth was created by Xenu, ruler of the Galactic Confederacy, and suddenly everyone in Beverly Hills is a Scientologist.
Marshall: Have you overheard any rumors about who is on the short-list to replace your husband?
Mrs. Billable Hour: I've heard that Success-Based Fees has thrown his hat in the ring. Project Billing is another likely candidate.
Marshall: What are your thoughts on those two?
Mrs. Billable Hour: I can't imagine either of them working out. Neither has an ounce of experience. Governor Patterson's selection of Caroline Kennedy for Senate would have been a safer bet.
Marshall: Well, what do you know about them?
Mrs. Billable Hour: Even though he denies it, everyone knows that Success-Based Fees has a gambling problem.
Mrs. Billable Hour: He'll convert all the managing partners into bookies. I envision meetings sounding something like this, "Word on the street is the spread against our Client is up from $1 million to 3.5, we should move to be relieved before we lose the farm!....Settle? Are you crazy? We drew a five and six! We've got to double-down!"
Marshall: And what about Project-Based?
Mrs. Billable Hour: She's such a bitch! I've tried to reach out to her but she doesn't return my calls.
Marshall: That's probably because she can't bill for phone calls!
Mrs. Billable: I suppose.
Marshall: Any predictions as to what will happen to your husband?
Mrs. Billable: Oh, he's not going anywhere. He'll continue to work for responsible attorneys like yourself who offer reasonable hourly fees, who don't charge to hear themselves speak on the phone and who forego purchasing mansions and yachts in favor of keeping hard-working associates employed.
Marshall: That's very kind of you. Anyway, my Real Law Practice is signaling that we're out of time. It was great having you on our show today, Mrs. Billable. Hopefully this hysteria will die down soon and lawyers and clients will recognize that your husband's the best man for the job even though he's not always perfect.
Marshall: Please join us for next week's topic: "Higher retention rates at the accident scene: Conscious versus unconscious." Auf wiedersehen!
(Fade to black)