The Rhetorical Reason Why

My husband and I were reading in the evening. I would occasionally look up from my book and start an impromptu conversation with him over the day’s happenings. After one explanation of an exchange with someone that day, I wondered out loud over the meaning of the words in that conversation.

I looked over at him and realized he was just reading. Feeling a little silly just talking to myself, I stopped. He is probably uninterested, I thought. But still, I went searching for the reason why.

“Women talk about feelings,” I said. “Don’t men do that?”

“We do,” he said. “We just don’t give the play-by-play, blow-by-blow, minute-by-minute account.”

“Oh,” I said.

“Analyzing is a woman thing,” he said.

A few minutes elapsed. I looked up from my book, again, and on a different topic I randomly said, “Why does my body’s full sensor not register until an hour after I’ve overeaten?”

“I don’t know why,” he said.

Realizing I was setting myself up as an example of what he had just concluded, I said, “There I go analyzing something again. I didn’t mean you had to answer my question.”

“Why don’t you just say rwhy instead of why so I know you mean a rhetorical why?” he said.


  1. Ryan
    Jul 11, 2008

    The best is when I’m having a perfectly normal conversation with my wife, then there is a pause, I think it’s over, and then she says something totally off the wall, like, “I can’t believe she would do that!?” And I’m like, “We were just talking about what to have for dinner … What are you talking about?”

    Although a mystery to me, she had actually been having a conversation in her head … with me! … and decided to just vocalize that one part. And somehow, my confused look was a surprise to her.

  2. Minna Dyer
    Jul 11, 2008

    That made me laugh.
    My husband is always reminding me how we don’t think the same and how I need to be direct (that’s the key) when I am asking questions or making comments. I make too many assumptions.

  3. Julie
    Jul 14, 2008

    That’s funny 🙂 It’s funny how the differences between man and woman are somewhat universal. They totally transcend geographic location (in free societies anyway), language barriers, race, religion, age, etc.

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