She: If you don’t move that pair of pants off the dresser, I’m going to set them on fire.
Z: Is this a liar-liar joke? Because if it’s not, then that would be very dangerous.
She: It’s not. But why wouldn’t fire be dangerous if it was a liar-liar joke?
Z: There’s no such thing as a joke that’s too dangerous. But, why are you threatening to set my pants on fire? And, more important, I have pants on top of the dresser?
She: Only for the past eight months.
Z: Oh, that explains it. Anything that’s been sitting on top of the dresser for longer than a month disappears. It’s dead to me. I develop a familiarity blind spot, and it just goes away.
She: I see. And apparently, you don’t.
Z: I don’t know about you, but I live in a very clean room.
She: That explains the slippers that are sitting next to the pants. Every time I see my mom, she asks if you’ve exchanged them yet.
Z: I have slippers?
She: Next to the pants. My mom bought them for you for Christmas, but they’re a size too big.
Z: Don’t set those on fire. When it gets cold again, I could use those.
She: Which is why you should go exchange them. Now. Before there’s arson.
Z: But I don’t need slippers right now. It’s very warm out. And I have enough pants, so I’m not really racing to get my mom to hem them for me.
She: But they’re cluttering up the dresser.
Z: I don’t see a thing.
She: Oh for the good old days, when hearing seemed to be your biggest problem.
She: Why do you hate errands so much?
Z: I don’t hate errands.
She: You hate errands so much that when our friend A gave you his old Civic this week (Thanks, A!), he actually left his credit-card number with his mechanic so that it would force you to take the car in to get it checked out and tuned up.
Z: That’s different. That’s a car, which I need right now. I very probably would have done that anyhow.
She: And have you?
Z: Tomorrow. Definitely.
She: With your own credit card?
Z: Thursday at the latest.
She: Look, I don’t love errands either. But I still do them. They’re kind of a part of being a functioning human being. Otherwise, you run out of stuff or things fall apart.
Z: But only for a month. And then they disappear.
She: Actually most errands reappear at least once a month, unless of course you have a wife or a mother to take care of them for you.
Z: Funny, I was thinking about that today while I was getting your mother’s car washed and lubed.
She: Errands that you actually did. Which was good, because my mother would have been angry if I’d set her car on fire.
Z: I was trying to decide whether I would hire someone else to do these things for me if I had a ton of money.
She: I know I just said I have no problem doing errands, but if I didn’t have to do them and could hire someone else to do them, I’d hire them in a second.
Z: I don’t think I would. I think if I had a ton of money, I’d be more likely to go to the car wash and the mechanic. Then I could be the rich guy who says, “Oh, no. I do all those things by myself. I’m not one of those rich guys who hire people to take his car to a place where you hire people to wash it. I’m a man of the people.”
She: So live rich. Hem your pants and exchange your slippers.
Z: If I did that now, I’d just be a poser.
She: Hem them. Exchange them.
Z: What pants?
She: The ones on fire.
Z: Yes, dear.