The Typical Marriage Conversation

We had just returned home from church on a Wednesday evening in early September. I was using the bathroom with the door open as most families with small children are likely to do as my wife stalked me in the hall waiting for me to take the baby so she could have her turn.

I asked my wife, “What is the thermostat set on?”
She replied, “I just turned it down.”
I smiled as it is one of my pet aggravations when questions are not answered. After a few seconds I asked again in a deliberately calmer tone, “What is the thermostat set on?”

“It’s set on 74, but I guess I’ll turn it down to 73. I’m sure you’re all sweaty from holding the baby along with your extra layer of fat.” The fat comment was not as biting as it might seem. To put it in context, we had recently been discussing how I was uncommonly and uncomfortably warm most of the time, and I had hypothesized that my weight gain was like the layer of blubber on a walrus or a man wearing a wet suit. Her next comment, no doubt in response to my repeat of the exact same question, actually made me laugh out loud. “I don’t know what you want me to say.” She spouted in frustration.

Once again attempting to be more congenial that the situation required, I finished saying, “I wanted to know what the thermostat was set on.”

The conversation continued with her explaining how she inferred the meaning of my question from my previous comments. I couldn’t stop laughing. By the way, Solo laughter is one of the worst things that can happen during a typical marriage conversation. The dilemma was clear. She had made the correct read, and reluctantly facilitated my desired result. However, my question was not answered, and the communication process had definitely broken down. I was to please with my observation to be the least bit upset, and she was soon distracted with her turn in the bathroom (with the door closed) so no harm was done in the making of this blog.  I am  a very blessed man. (see below)

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