Friday, July 18, 2008

Questions That Time Out

Question Timeout Default Answer
Do you want coffee this morning? 12 sec Yes
Anybody here? 10 sec No
Hey, how about we watch *this* movie? 7 sec No
(in a horror movie) Honey are you all right? 6 sec No, I'm dead
Need help with that? 5 sec Yes
Do you want the last piece of pie? 4.5 sec Yes
Are you going to eat that? 4.2 sec Yes, or No but I'm disgusted you want to eat after me, but by letting you know that I'm vaguely insulting myself
(after being struck by a car) Are you ok? 4 sec No
(from mother) Is there a new girl / boy in your life? 3.9 sec Yes but you would not approve of her / him, or No but I'm afraid you'll help, or Maybe except how to tell you it's a boy / girl
So, did you like my casserole? 3.8 sec No
(from mother) Are you happy in your life? 3.6 sec No but if I let you know I'll never get off the ph... Darn it.
Who farted?!? 3.5 sec Me
Are you choking? 3.2 sec Yes
You didn't eat the last piece of pie did you? 3.1 sec Yes
I didn't offend you, did I? 3 sec Yes
Do you like my new dress / haircut / nose job? 2.8 sec No
Do you love me? 2.5 sec No
Are you happy I'm pregnant? 2.2 sec No
Are you having an affair? 0.64 sec Yes
(implicit with all unconcluded email exchanges) Do you still like me, or foresee any advantage at all to association with me? 72 hours, or 3 times median response time No*
* or Yes, I'm still composing an eloquent, original, charming way to get it across
or No, I'm still composing a face-saving way to avoid saying so
or Yes, but not enough to notice your last email had a question in it
or No, and I can't believe you haven't picked up on it yet
or Maybe, but something more interesting is happening in my life
or Don't know either, but other neglected emails have scrolled yours out of view

4 comments:

Gwen said...

Is there a time limit padded in for trying to think of a funny response but coming up with nothing? If so, I hesitated 10 seconds while drafting this comment in my head.

Bob Stein said...

Why yes, dear Gwen, I do believe spouses should exercise more levity and patience during a fidelity check. And I expect most healthy adults could survive an extra ten seconds without oxygen.

I once had the chance to use Heimlich,
So I sat and composed this limerick.
I do the best rhyme,
When I haven't much time,
And guffawing improves the ballistic.

Will said...

This is a very funny post. I imagine myself waiting the specified time and the answer becoming more and more apparent by the millisecond.

Bob Stein said...

Hello again, Will from TheSatisfied. (Extraordinary project there!) I admire brevity. The ultimate is saying much by speaking not at all. I am in awe of that talent. I'm bad at it. I only aspire to communicate by silence when some other channel is open.