The Exilarch had a kind of (outdoor) banqueting hall in his orchard. ‘Will the Master’, he said to R. Huna b. Hinena, ‘make some provision whereby we might be enabled to dine there tomorrow’
Acceding to the rather polite request, R. Huna b. Hinena begins to construct an eruv by putting up a reed-fence with posts less than 3 handbreadths apart all around. This will define the space as “private” and allow the carrying of objects and utensils, essential for a lovely outdoor feast.
But the good times don’t last.
Raba, however, (who did not think the fence was necessary since he saw the courtyard as an extension) went there and pulled them out and R. Papa and R. Huna son of R. Joshua followed him and picked them up (so that R. Huna b. Hinena couldn’t put them back again)
Then the rabbis begin squabbling with each other, all making arguments about the status of the banqueting hall. Meanwhile nothing gets done and the party is ruined.
And the Exilarch gets the great comeback line, by quoting scripture (!):
They are wise to do evil, but to do good they have no knowledge. (Jer. 4: 22)
But the fun part is: it’s the rabbis (who get the Exilarch’s smackdown) who put this story in the Talmud!