As part of my first year of marital education I have learnt there are questions that when asked to either a husband or wife may elicit the same answer, but the meaning of which is anything but similar.
“Are you ready to go out?” is a good example of this. When I answer “Yes” I really do mean it, and this is further implied by the fact that I’ll be stood outside the house, front door key in hand, car unlocked, raring to go.
When Kate replies “Yes” what she actually means is “No, give me another 10 minutes to decide what shoes to wear, find my handbag, get my coat, perhaps an umbrella, etc”. And this is a potentially dangerous situation because you will be asked “What shoes should I wear? Where we going?” It doesn’t matter what answer you give here, you will be ignored, so, my stock answer now is “Trainers, we’re going rock climbing”.
This then leaves you with 10 minutes to burn. There isn’t really anything useful you can do in this time. You can perhaps further perfect your arse crease in the sofa, or flick through a magazine, but really, you’re just waiting. If you go out and sit in the car and wait, you’ll be in a world of pain. Same goes for the turning the TV back on. Just. Don’t. Do. It! I find that loitering round the house checking the back door is locked about 20 times is fairly effective method of hurrying Kate up.
Still, in the scheme of things “Are you ready to go out?” is a rather tame question. There are some that can really put in your trouble, such as “Do I look fat in this?”
Here there is no right answer. If you say no, you will be ignored because the correct answer is yes because if it wasn’t, the question wouldn’t have been asked in the first place. But for the love of God, don’t answer yes; this will incur a long list of penalties one of which will be a lack of certain privileges ;).
In this case I find it’s best to ignore saying anything sensible and instead go for “I’m going for dump” and then sit on the toilet making farting noises whilst complaining that something in yesterday’s tea gave me an upset stomach. This usually stops any further queries and allows me to slope off and play a bit of Xbox, World of Warcraft or PSP.
So, as you can see, I’m learning, but there is still a long way to go!