Thursday, May 04, 2006

Polite conversation

I tend at times to be somewhat literal in my responses to people. I might be having a conversation with someone and a third party waltzes up and says 'may I join you?'. To which the only sane reply is 'why, am I coming apart?'. I love that moment of puzzlement that often stretches into incomprehension.

My wife might suggest it's time she fixed dinner; I reply 'why, what's wrong with it?'. Or she says she's going to straighten the house. 'Why, is it tilted?'. After more than three years of that she's become used to the idiot responses! :-)

One of the guys at the office has a habit of asking what's up. To which query I always look up and answer with whatever happens to be over our heads. The ceiling, the sky, treetops, you name it. He suggested the answer was getting a trifle tired. How little he knows me! Heino could tell him that, if he should have the misfortune to know me for 30 years, I'll still be making that reply.

Today he tried a new tack. 'How's it hanging?'.

I replied, 'all the way to the ground mate, and it's making furrows!'. He had no idea how to respond to that! :-)

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