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The Acupuncturist is the sixth episode of Season 2 of Curb Your Enthusiasm. It is the 16th overall episode.


Larry makes a bet with his acupuncturist, the confident Kazu Muriyama, that if he cures Larry's neck problems, he will pay him $5,000, and if Muriyama fails, he will waive his fee. Subsequently, Larry lends $5,000 to his old friend and former co-writer of SNL, the poor and struggling Barry Weiner, who promises to pay him back after his dad (who has a heart condition) dies. He explains that though his father is wealthy and aware of his struggles, he refuses to bail him out financially.

At home, Larry receives a delivery of orchids from Muriyama. At a Japanese restaurant, Larry discusses Barry's misfortune with Jeff and tells him about the orchids. Jeff suggests that the acupuncturist could be gay, and Larry decides to stop seeing him. Larry inadvertently offends a waiter by asking if men sending each other orchids is a Japanese custom, and then angers him even more by throwing water on his sleeve when it catches fire while the waiter is flambeing a dessert.

That night, Larry, Cheryl and Jeff attend a surprise party for Barry's wife Carol. They accidentally ruin the surprise when they arrive late, due to Larry putting on the wrong clothes, and having to change. At the party, Barry's father develops a crush on Cheryl. Larry tells Barry's dad that he was only able to get started on Seinfeld because his father gave him an advance on his inheritance, hoping to convince him to give Barry some money so that Larry can get his money back. The next day, Barry is furious at Larry, saying his dad is convinced he put Larry up to persuading him to give him money, and in retaliation is rewriting his will to disinherit Barry and give all of his money to the environmental fund that Cheryl belongs to. Larry meets up with Barry's dad again, and tells him that Barry did not put Larry up to their talk. Naturally, Barry's dad does not believe him. The waiter Larry angered recognizes Larry and throws water at him. Larry ducks and the water lands on Barry's dad, causing him a fatal heart attack. Barry gives Larry a $5,000 check at the funeral and thanks him for causing his father's death. Unfortunately, Carol (having not taken kindly to Larry ruining her surprise party) sells Larry out to Barry's family on the deal between Larry and Barry, causing Barry's relatives to mistakenly assume that it was Larry who killed Barry's dad. Barry's cousin Doug, not knowing about Larry's neck problems, grabs Larry in a headlock, forcing Larry to go back to the acupuncturist. Larry is forced to pay Muriyama the $5,000 from Barry, since Larry was feeling slightly better when Muriyama's receptionist called him a few days earlier. When Larry asks Muriyama if he sends all his patients orchids, the acupuncturist replies that it is indeed an ancient Japanese custom.


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