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‘The Van Buren Boys’ Quotes

Seinfeld: The Van Buren Boys

814. The Van Buren Boys

Aired February 6, 1997

When George goes to the high school to meet applicants for the Susan Ross scholarship, he meets a lackluster student who claims an interest in architecture. Elaine helps J. Peterman write his autobiography. Meanwhile, Jerry thinks he's met the perfect woman, but nobody else seems to agree.

Quote from George

George: Hey, I think I may have found someone for the scholarship.
Jerry: Yeah?
George: I'm interviewing all these annoying little overachievers, and finally, this kid walks in, Steven Koren, a regular guy, likes sports, watches TV.
Jerry: Is he smart?
George: He knows how to read. And he also knows finishing an entire book doesn't prove anything. And get this. He's into architecture.
Jerry: Hey, just like you pretend to be.
George: Yes. With a little guidance, Steven Koren is going to be everything I claim to be, only for real. That's my dream, Jerry.

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Quote from George

George: So, uh, Steven.. I see you're president of the chess club.
Steven: State champs.
George: Who's your favorite chess player?
Steven: [mumbles] Nastercoff?
George: Right. [mumbles] Nastercoff. What country is he from, again?
Steven: [sighs] I don't know. I made it up. [gets up to leave] I'm never gonna get this thing.
George: [gets up] Whoa, whoa, whoa. What are you telling me for? You really had me going, there! Come on, sit down. What do you want to do when you grow up?
Steven: I've been telling people that I'd like to be an architect.

Quote from J. Peterman

Elaine: Oh, what didn't you like about the first chapter?
J. Peterman: Well, it started out nicely. "I'm returning some pants." A very identifiable problem... "I set off down a train tunnel.". But that's where the story takes a most unappealing turn.
Elaine: Oh, no, no. That's where it gets interesting! Don't you see? The- The train is bearing down on you... You dive into a side tunnel and you run into a whole band of underground tunnel dwellers!
J. Peterman: It just seems so cliched, and obvious. It's not interesting writing.
Elaine: Yeah, yeah, I know. Um, how about if, instead of diving from the train, you... Uh, you, I don't know, you slip and, and fall in some mud, and ruin your pants?
J. Peterman: The very pants I was returning. That's perfect irony! Elaine, that is interesting writing!

Quote from J. Peterman

J. Peterman: [answers phone] Peterman, here.
Kramer: Mr. Peterson, you gotta sell me my stories back.
J. Peterman: You want to know something? I no longer need them.
Elaine: No, no. Mr. Peterman, why don't we keep them as a, as a reference?
J. Peterman: Nonsense. [to Kramer] I have Benes' wonderfully imaginative mind to spin my stories. You take back your tales, you vagabond!
Kramer: Yippie-yi-yay!
J. Peterman: [hangs up] There you are, Elaine. Go forth, and create. And, by the way, when you get to that chapter about my romantic escapades, feel free to toss yourself in the mix.

Quote from Jerry

Jerry: I'm not buying any of this.
Kramer: All right, so what are you saying? That we're wrong? Oh, everybody's wrong but you.
Jerry: You know, this is like that Twilight Zone where the guy wakes up, and he's the same but everyone else is different!
Kramer: Which one?
Jerry: They were all like that.

Quote from George

Jerry: Who is the last president to have a beard?
George: Nixon.
Jerry: No, I mean a real thick beard.
George: His was thick.
Jerry: No, I mean like a full, long beard, like Smith Brothers Cough Drops.
George: Falkmore.
Jerry: Who?
George: Artemis N. Falkmore.
Jerry: You made that up, right?
George: Yeah. But it sounds like a president name?
Jerry: Yeah. Why do presidents all have these bad names? Woodrow, Grover, Millard.
George: The presidency attracts the badly named. Their ambition is based on personal insecurities. It's classic male overcompensation.
Jerry: Are you wearing lifts in those shoes?
George: Cab!

Quote from Jerry

Ellen: So, they have this clock now, where you punch in your age, and all your risk factors. It actually counts down how much time you have left to live.
Jerry: So what's the great moment? You're on your death bed, they're pounding on your chest, and you're going 10, 9, 8... I told you this thing was good!

Quote from George

George: I gotta go down to the foundation. I'm interviewing high schoolers for the Susan Ross scholarship.
Jerry: Does it ever bother you that this organization-
George: Nope!
Jerry: ...is beating the bushes-
George: Nope.
Jerry: ...to basically give this money away-
George: No!
Jerry: ...to virtually anyone, as long as they're not you?
George: I'm fine with it! Fi-hi-hi-hine, I say! [exits]

Quote from Kramer

Kramer: All right, so there I am at Lorenzo's, loading up my slice of the fixin's bar, garlic and what-not... And I see this guy over at the pizza boxes giving me the stink-eye. So I give him the crook-eye back, you know. Then, I notice that he's not alone. I'm taking on the entire Van Buren Boys!
Jerry: The Van Buren Boys? There's a street gang named after President Martin Van Buren?
Kramer: Oh, yeah, and they're just as mean as he was. So, I make a move to the door, you know... they block it! So, I lunged for the bathroom. I grab the knob... Occupado! Then they back me up against the cartoon map of Italy, and all of the sudden, they just stop.
Elaine: What? What happened?
Kramer: Because I'm still holding the garlic shaker. Yeah, like this. I'm only showing eight fingers.
Jerry: Well, what does that mean?
Kramer: That's their secret sign! See, Van Buren, he was the eighth President. They thought I was a former Van B. Boy!
Jerry: Wow. How was the pizza?
Kramer: It was a little oily.

Quote from J. Peterman

Elaine: Mr. Peterman, thanks for having me over. Your place isn't quite what I imagined.
J. Peterman: Oh, it's just a place to flop.
Elaine: Well, what part of your life do you want to start with? Foreign intrigue? Exotic romances?
J. Peterman: Oh, Elaine, we've covered all of that in the catalog ad nauseum. No, I would like this book to be about my day-to-day life.
Elaine: Oh.
J. Peterman: [turns on TV] Oh, damn. They changed the cable stations again. Just when I finally memorized them.

Quote from J. Peterman

Elaine: Well, I- I got to tell you, Mr. Peterman. I don't think I see a whole book here.
J. Peterman: Well, I'm sure we'll come up with something. What do you say you and I order ourselves a pie? Do you like Lorenzo's?
Elaine: You know, a friend of mine almost got beat up at that place by the Van Buren Boys?
J. Peterman: You don't say.
Elaine: Yeah. The only think that saved him is that he accidentally flashed their secret gang sign.
J. Peterman: Well, that's pretty exciting. Let's put that in the book.
Elaine: But, that didn't happen to you.
J. Peterman: Well, so we pay off your friend, and it becomes a Peterman.
Elaine: No, I- I really don't think you can do that.
J. Peterman: Oh, damn. I forgot to buy plant food again. I'll bet I got a coupon for it.
Elaine: You know what? Maybe I better talk to my friend.

Quote from Jerry

Jerry: Is that the same outfit you were wearing yesterday?
Ellen: No, this is brand new. Do you like it?
Jerry: Actually, yeah. [pause] Wait a second! Is that the fork that fell on the floor?! Are you using the fork that fell on the floor?!
Ellen: No, Jerry, the waitress game be another one.
Jerry: I guess that's all right.
Ellen: Is something wrong, Jerry?
Jerry: No, absolutely nothing. [they get up to leave] You're fantastic.

Quote from George

George: Ladies and gentlemen, I am happy to introduce you to the first Susan Ross scholar. This is Steven Koren. His G.P.A. is a solid 2.0. Right in that meaty part of the curve. Not showing off, not falling behind.
Wyck: George, the qualifications for this scholarship were supposed to be largely academic.
George: I'm sure we're all aware of the flaws and biases of standardized tests.
Wyck: These aren't standardized tests. These are his grades.

Quote from George

George: Besides, Steven Koren has the highest of aspirations. He wants to be... an architect.
Wyck: Is that right?
Steven: Actually, maybe I could set my sights a little bit higher.
George: [laughs] Steven, nothing is higher than an architect.
Steven: I think I'd really like to be a city planner. [sits down] Why limit myself to just one building, when I can design a whole city?
Wyck: Well, that's a good point.
George: No, it's not.
Steven: Well, isn't an architect just an art school drop-out with a tilty desk, and a big ruler? [laughs]
George: It's called a T-square.

Quote from Kramer

Kramer: And they made it their sign, because Van Buren, our 8th President, was the man they most admired.
J. Peterman: [laughs] Kramer, my friend, that is one ripping good yarn. [hands Kramer a check]
Kramer: You know, if you like that one, I got more. What are you looking for? Romance? Comedy? Adventure? .. Erotica? [clicks tongue]
Elaine: No, uh, Kramer. I don't think-
J. Peterman: How much would you take for the whole lot?
Kramer: My whole lot?
J. Peterman: Name your price, man!
Kramer: $1500.
J. Peterman: I'll give you half that.
Kramer: Done!
J. Peterman: Kramer, my friend, consider Elaine at your disposal.
Kramer: Okay. [to Elaine] Well, I, uh.. I like to work in the evenings.

Quote from Kramer

Elaine: Would you please just get on with the stupid Bob Saccamano story?!
Kramer: Well, I'm on the phone with Bob, and I realize right then and there that I need to return this pair of pants. So, I'm off to the store.
Elaine: What happened to Bob Saccamano?
Kramer: Well, nothing. His part of the story is done. So I'm waiting for the subway, It's not coming, so I decided to hoof it through the tunnel.
Elaine: All right, well, now that's something..
Kramer: Well, I don't know if I lost track of time or what, but the next thing I knew..
Elaine: A train is bearing down on you?!
Kramer: No, I slipped and fell in the mud. Ruining the very pants I was about to return.
Elaine: I don't understand. You were wearing the pants you were returning?
Kramer: Well, I guess I was.
Elaine: What were you gonna wear on the way back?
Kramer: Elaine, are you listening?! I didn't even get there!

Quote from George

Jerry: So you're denying him the scholarship just because he wants to be a city planner?
George: I was betrayed. That kid was like a son to me. And if there's one person you should be able to hold down, it's your own flesh and blood. Like my father and my father's father before him.
Jerry: You know, maybe philanthropy is not your field.


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