• Image about Shahin Takes Off 11-01-2006
Driven to Distraction

THE GREAT THING about taking my wife to the airport is that we get an opportunity to have one last argument before she leaves town.

It's raining. The windshield wipers slap back and forth.

"I don't know why you're upset," I say. "I thought you'd consider this a favor."

"It just makes me rethink everything."

I glance over at her.

"Everything?" I ask cautiously. "What is everything?"

"I like the time to myself," she says. "It gives me a chance to transition, to think about the trip, what I need to do."

Good. She didn't mean everything everything. For a second there, I thought I might have to seek a note of sympathetic accord.

"So, you're saying you would rather drive around in the rain, search for a parking spot, and take the shuttle from the long-term lot than have a nice ride with your loving husband who will drop you off right in front of the terminal?"

"I'm saying I would rather have some time to myself."

"Time to yourself? When you can be having this lovely conversation instead?"

She doesn't laugh.

She looks out her window as if somewhere in the rain exists someone who would understand. As if maybe she missed her opportunity for "everything" to mean everything.

Okay. So maybe I wasn't doing her such a favor. Maybe she could have done without the barbed humor on the way to the airport. And the arguing. And the tension.

"Well, why didn't you just say you didn't want me to drive you?"

I've got her. If she didn't want a ride, she didn't have to have a ride.