Wednesday, July 21, 2010


It had been a long and tiring day at work. The temperature in the shade was over 100º because of the humidity and the air conditioning in her office building had quit working around noon. The afternoon had been almost unbearable, made even worse by her manager’s demand that everybody needed to work a little faster. It was outside the realm of possibility because without air conditioning, the computers had slowed to a snail’s pace and no matter how loudly he yelled, working faster just wasn’t going to work.

She was looking so forward to getting home and taking a cool shower, sipping on an iced tea, and sitting in front of a fan with the air conditioner on high.

She walked into the apartment and looked around. Slowly. She couldn’t believe it.

“Not today,” she thought. “He can’t be hurt today.”

She called her husband’s cell phone, but there was no answer. She tried again in five minutes, but still, no answer. “He should be home in about an hour,” she thought.

She hoped it wouldn’t be bad, but knew she’d just have to wait to find out.

She took her cool shower, poured a tall iced tea and sat in the cool living room, trying hard not to worry.

She heard the ping of the elevator as it announced it had arrived at the top floor. A minute later, she heard the familiar jangle of her husband’s keys as he fiddled to unlock their door.

He walked in and exclaimed, “Oh beautiful, sweet, cool air. I think I’ve arrived in heaven.”

She jumped up from the sofa and rushed over to him. “Are you okay, baby?” she asked.

“What?” he said, a deeply puzzled look creased his face. “What do you mean?”

“Well, you’re hurt aren’t you?” she asked, looking him up and down.

“Why would I be hurt?” he asked her, the puzzled look managing to twist into an even more puzzled look.

“Well, when I walked into the kitchen and saw what had happened, I naturally assumed you had been hurt.”

“What happened in the kitchen?” he asked, and headed toward it, not knowing exactly what he was going to find. He looked around. Slowly. “What the heck was she talking about?” he thought.

“What’s wrong with the kitchen?” he asked.

“Oh my God,” she said. “Your eyes were hurt? What happened to your eyes?”

“Nothing. There’s nothing wrong with my eyes. What are you talking about?”

“Well, if there’s nothing wrong with your eyes, and you don’t have any broken bones, then why the heck didn’t you do the dishes?”

“The dishes? You’re talking about the dirty dishes? That’s what this is about?”

“When I was leaving this morning,” she said, “you said you didn’t have to get to your office for another hour and that you would do the dishes and clean the counter. They weren’t done so I had to assume you were hurt somehow.”

“And you’ve been worrying about me since you got home?”

“You can’t be that stupid,” she said, with an obvious hint of sarcasm.

“If I am, am I in less trouble?”

If you have to ask, it’s already too late for you. But to make sure you understand …

Yes, you are that stupid, and no, you’re not in less trouble.

And maybe you should seriously consider turning in your Man Card until you can truly fit in your big pants.

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