Comedy Stories


“O Woman That I Used To Love, what should we get for dinner tonight?’’

“Honestly, my Greatest Disappointment? I don’t care.”

“You do care. You want me to suggest a place to eat so you can shoot it down. Whatever I say, you will wrinkle your little nose like I decided that we should eat out of the cat’s litter box.”

“You could not be more wrong, but you usually are.”

“Perhaps you could stop on the way home and pick up some takeout.”

“I could, but I won’t. Our nightly conversation about dinner is the only authentic communication we will have all day, so I’m going to stretch it out as long as possible. It’s the only way I can exert control over you in an as passive-aggressive way as possible since I know you are hungry and short-tempered.”

“All true. Hey, I’ll order Pad Thai. Not that you are satisfied with anything, but you usually don’t hate that. I won’t order spring rolls because you like them. Instead, I’ll get the crispy ones I like—just to piss you off. When you complain, I’ll counter with the idea of your picking up dinner next time. Then you will sulk in the bedroom and I can watch TV peacefully without your talking during the interesting parts.”

“Eh, I don’t really want Thai food.”

“Of course not. What do you want?”

“I want you to treat me like you did when we were dating.”

“I want you to look like you did when we were dating. How about Taco Bell?”

“How about someplace that doesn’t have paper napkins or E. coli outbreaks?”

“How fancy do you want to get on a Wednesday? And why do you agonize over every meal like it’s going to be your last? It’s just food, not a commitment—like the one you roped me into. You weren’t really pregnant, were you?”

“Of course not. But I thought I could have been.”

“Ah, yes. We’ve never really talked about your duplicity at the beginning, but we’ll just sweep that under the rug and not worry about it for another few years until we’re forced into marriage counseling.”

“Agreed. But for tonight, I want to sit down and order off a menu. I don’t want to get take out, drive-thru, fast casual, pick a number, or a microwave burrito at 7-11. Let’s go to a restaurant with actual waiters and waitresses. You do remember waitresses? I believe the last affair you had was with the blonde waitress at the diner by your work.”

“Hardly an affair. More like a two-month fling. She went back to college in the fall. So, how about we save sit-down restaurants for special occasions? Like the weekend? I can’t remember eating out every night as a kid. My mother cooked three meals a day!”

“Your mother didn’t have to work. If we could afford it, I’d like to sit home, stir a box of Rice-A-Roni, overcook pork chops, and dish out a side order of childhood trauma—just like your mother.”

“You are nothing like my mother. Sometimes I wish I could conjure up enough emotion to hate you. As it is, you’re an annoyance. A mosquito in the room. Hair on a bar of soap. Gum on my shoe.”



“Or some other mid-price family restaurant. Just pick one. Texas Roadhouse. Olive Garden. Outback Steakhouse.”

“Perfect. We’ll go to a full-service restaurant and get a $7.99 Molten Lava Chocolate Cake for you to take one bite out of. Then you can sit on your bottom while women half your age scurry around to bring you as many Diet Cokes as you wish—along with a platter of limes! In the entire 19th century, the British Navy consumed fewer limes than you do.”

“I. Can’t. Wait. Let’s go to a restaurant where you will reject the first three seatings we are offered, embarrassing me in front of the waitstaff. What do you have against sitting in a booth, anyway? You will ask the waiter what’s on draft, order Miller Lite regardless, and eat the entire bread basket. After looking at the menu for ten seconds, you will order the least healthy thing—stuffed, battered, buttered, fried, creamy, glazed, supersized, or chocolate-encrusted. And yes, you do want fries with that. A double order!”

“And you . . . after fifteen minutes of reading the menu like an Egyptologist seeing the Rosetta Stone for the first time, you will order what you always do: a grilled chicken breast. $17.99 for a bland slab of frozen chicken you could microwave at home.”

“You want me to cook at home? Gordon Ramsay couldn’t conjure up beans on toast on those ancient appliances.”

“Here we go.”

“You promised me we’d move into a larger house when the kids got bigger. Well, they got bigger and left for college. Now it’s just you and me in the same 2000-square-foot shack.”

“That shack is almost paid for. I’m sick of house hunting. There is no need to move. Why do you want to double our mortgage? Stop watching HGTV. If you’re lucky, maybe Joanna and Chip Gaines will feature our shack on Fixer Upper.”

“If only you were half the man Chip Gaines is.”

“If only you were half as good-looking as Joanna.”

“You don’t lift a finger to help around the house.”

“You haven’t lifted a pot or pan since the kids left for college. Why have appliances if you aren’t going to use them?”

“The same reason you have a gym membership.”

“Oh my god, I am not going to sit across any restaurant table—or booth for that matter—and look at your face for forty-five minutes. I don’t want to hear you complain about who didn’t unjam the copier at work. I don’t want to hear about your father’s recent medical appointment and what was lanced. All I can stomach right now is making a decision about what we want to eat. I will buy it, see you shove it down your gullet, and pat myself on the back for not loading up the car and leaving you tonight.”

“Oh, please leave tonight. I will help you pack. I’ll try not to miss the long evenings when you talk to the dog more than me, the clothes you can’t quite get into the hamper, and the half dozen glasses you leave around the house for the dishwashing fairy.”

“So, pizza?”

“Pizza’s always good.”

🜋 🜋 🜋

“Darling, what should we get for dinner tonight?”

“Honestly, babe? I don’t care.”

“So, pizza?”

“Pizza’s always good.”

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