“Pan, this weekend when we meet Wendi, make sure you compliment her. You know her little surgery on the lips, eye corners, and upper arms cost a pretty penny. I think she’s a little hurt you didn’t say anything last time. We are old friends and we want to be supportive.” Pammy says to her husband Pan.
“She looks the same to me.” Pan says.
“I think so too. Not much difference. But we can’t say that to her. Can you tell her she looks better? Just to make her feel good? You hardly looked at her last time as if you didn’t care one way or the other.” Pammy says.
“I really don’t understand you. Whenever I look at other women, you protest; now when I don’t look at other women, you complain too. I really don’t understand you or women in general.” Pan says, getting ready to go back to watch his soccer game.
“When you give Wendi a supportive look and a polite compliment, I can’t help but praise you. It’s the other kind of look that I complained about.” Pammy says.
“Now you start to sanction how I look at people. You sanction my food, sanction my TV program. You sanction everything–you are such a dictator.” Pan says.
“I am certainly not. You agreed that we are going to eat healthier food from now on and you are not going to get ESPN plus–ESPN is enough. I thought we’ve already talked about and agreed on those things.” Pammy says.
“That’s exactly what I am talking about. We both agreed to your ideas. You had your success on food and TV, and now you move on to control how I look at people. So how should I look at Wendi–at her face, her lips, the corner of her eyes, or at her arms–and how long should I look at her? You dictate the terms.” Pan raises his arm to reveal his wristwatch as if to practice counting the seconds.
“You deliberately try to misunderstand me, don’t you? I only want you to be polite to Wendi and say something appropriate, but you drag out all the food, TV, and your watch…”
“Oh, Pammy, come here. Don’t worry. I will go to Wendi when we meet this weekend and say the most appropriate things.”
“That’s my Pan. You are the nicest and cleverest…”
They embrace and calm down. A minute later, Pammy perks up again.
“I am not trying to sanction you, Pan, but sometimes you do look at girls with a flash of interest in your eyes…” Pammy says.
“Pammy, I’ve never said anything about you but you always pick on me.”
“What? What do you want to say about me? Tell me.”
“Pammy, whenever you go out, you dress in your newest outfit with designer bag and that expensive jade necklace. Whenever you come home, you dress in the ugliest waist-less cotton… I don’t want to call it a dress since it is just a bed-sheet with a hole in it. You have that for ten years and it’s from Walmart.” Pan says.
“I have to dress formally as a real estate agent…” Pammy says.