The gang has just found out that Barney doesn’t own nor know how to use a screwdriver when Barney’s long-lost dad (played by John Lithgow) shows up at his door, Barney’s letter in hand. Later, Barney regales the gang with tales of his daddy being just like him — he drinks, he womanizes, he likes fine Italian neckwear — he’s the Legendaddy. Then he tells them he’s joining his dad on a rock tour he’s managing in Asia. But when Dad turns up at the bar, the gang finds out he’s a timid driving instructor from White Plains with a family of his own, and that Barney won’t return his calls. They stage an Intervention at Ted’s dream house, which is near White Plains, apparently, and send Barney over for dinner with the fam. Barney is sickened by the suburban life, and immediately gets into a competitive streak with his 11-year-old half-brother J.J. Realizing it stands for Jerome Junior, he throws a hissy fit and tries to steal their basketball hoop. When Dad realizes that Barney is mad that he couldn’t be a suburban dad for Barney, he teaches Barney how to use a screwdriver and take down the basketball hoop. Barney then brings it over to Ted’s house and gives it to him for his future kids.
In the B-plot, Barney’s limited use of the word “tool” brings out everyone else’s gaps in knowledge — Ted didn’t know how to pronounce “chameleon” (shocker!), Robin didn’t know that the North Pole was an actual place (even though she’s a Canadian journalist?), Lily can’t throw accurately to save her life (or pee straight, apparently), and no one says anything about Marshall, since his dad just died. When he calls them on it, pointing out his many tests — liking The Phantom Menace, growing a soul patch, adopting a possum, etc. — the gang finally open the floodgates. Marshall apparently cannot wink, nor swallow pills, which seem more like physical disabilities than knowledge gaps. But it’s all good.