First, she gets rained on. Now this.

My wife called me at work on Wednesday morning, and bravely pretended to need to talk to me about a few items and errands she needed to run. Then she got down to business:

“I have some really bad news,” she says. “What’s the worst thing that could happen to you?”

Okay. In an instant, I run through the options in my head:

    • The kids are in the car; she’s standing on the front porch with her suitcases packed
    • A large brown envelope has come to the house addressed to my wife, documenting a period of my life in which I apparently (I will claim) suffered from amnesia
    • I’ve done or said something which I can’t remember at the moment, or I’ve forgotten to do or say something which I can’t remember at the moment, but for which I will most likely have to deeply and abjectly make an apology that I will never forget

“I don’t know,” I say. “Just tell me, okay?”

“Well, [graphic description of horrible, unspeakable act deleted].”


”[Expletive deleted],” I mutter. “You’re kidding me, right?

“Noooo,” she says. “[Equally nauseous variation of the horrible act omitted].”


”[Expletive deleted],” I mutter.

“You going to come home to look at it?”

“Why? I’m already having a bad day. Now I need to vomit in the front yard?”

Now, I appreciate my wife’s effort to overstate the life-and-death seriousness of the problem in the hope that breaking the news to me would allow me to immediately put it in perspective, but I’m still bummed. I’ve since understood, as I manage my grief, that others in this big world have had far more tragic and painful problems to cope with this week and that I remain, in spite of my grief, a lucky, lucky man.

But I’m still queasy. And [expletive deleted].

The bottom line: my buttercup needs some cosmetic surgery, but she’ll be just fine. Me? I hope to be taking nourishment sometime this weekend.

AuthorJoseph Fusco