Last month my wife Aleen asked me to join her for an errand on the other side of town.
At first I was reluctant.
By which I mean, I refused categorically.
When I gave her the chip, I certainly didn’t mean to include Going With Her to an Antique Glass Artisan’s Shop in South Central L.A. But nor did I specifically exclude this activity.
So she used the damn chip to take me on an interior-décor mission.
I think I would rather mount a one-man assault on a Taliban safehouse in Kandahar than go on an interior-décor mission. But that’s beside the point.
Anyone who has passed this building knows the one I’m talking about – round façade, triangular spire of stained-glass on the side of the building. Not far from a Krispy Kreme donut shop.
As we drove past, Aleen asked breezily, “Is that Staples Center?”
I was delighted by the mix-up, since: a) it was absurd; and b) it gave me new material for my blog. Even better, whenever I drive past this particular house of worship, I now think of my wife’s innocent belief that 18,000 people were possibly inside cheering for the Lakers.
Sports were at the root of another mix-up, too.
At bedtime last night, she asked Jesse and me whether we were excited about ‘Ross Perot’s hat trick.’
Ross Perot, in my experience, doesn’t play hockey at all, let alone score three goals in a single game. To me, he is more of a crackpot billionaire who once ran for President of the United States.
Aleen said she was pretty sure Perot got a hat trick.
Later we realized she was talking about Mathieu Perreault, of the Washington Capitals, who did indeed score three goals against the Boston Bruins.
Apparently, Aleen has an application on her BlackBerry which sends news alerts about our favorite team, the Capitals.
This is why she occasionally asks random questions about recent transactions.
Guys, did you think Cody Eakin should have been re-assigned to Hershey?
Honey, can you believe the Caps gave Joel Ward $12 million?
(The answer to the second question is Hell No, by the way.)
Once we straightened out the Perreault-Perot confusion, we had to admit that she was being a good sport, trying so hard to learn about ice hockey.
But she does complain, from time to time.
I said ice hockey is good for our kids, both physically and emotionally.
I also pointed out that some travelers have been getting bed bugs lately, even at fancy hotels.
This gambit failed. Aleen gave a curt nod and sent me to the snack stand for hot cocoa.
“Next year we’re going to Maui,” she said.