A few weeks ago I passed a friend at work,  and he looked rather sad, so stopped to check on him and said, “Hey, you doing OK?”

He looked down at me (he’s a goddamn giant), and replied, “You know, I’ve had better.”

“What’s wrong?”

“I put my wife on standby,” and half shrugged his shoulders. “You know all these years I’d go home and just be miserable. I thought it was my job. I thought it was so many different things, but it’s my home-life.”

“What do you mean?” I asked. “What’s wrong with your home-life?”

“My wife, I can’t get her to do anything. She won’t get a job, she won’t do anything for herself.” I thought about the fact that his wife had just been laid off from her job, and that she was taking care of their two children, but I didn’t bring it up. “I’m serious, if she doesn’t get it together, I’m out–I’m getting a divorce.”

“I’m sorry it’s that bad.” I said. And it must be terrible because two years ago when I told him I was considering divorce he shot me a look like I was the world’s biggest wimp, and bragged about how he’d never do it.

“Well, it’s not just that. A lot of my friends are pretty upset with me too.”

“Why?”

“Well, I kinda started seeing this other woman and…I don’t know. We met, we like each other, and she just does it for me. Makes me feel like I used to.”

“Does your wife know?”

“Yeah, everyone knows, that’s why they’re mad.”

“Well, I’m not mad at you.”

“Thank you.”

I checked my watch and said, “Well, break-time’s over, I gotta get to it.” And we parted ways.

Later that week we met again. After the usual introductions he said, “So I was hanging out with my girlfriend the other day when she gets the bright idea to barbeque. And I told her I couldn’t, I had to go home and cook for the family. And she was like, why don’t you just bring your family over? So we packed up, and had a barbeque in her backyard.”

“Seriously?” I asked.

“Yeah, it was great. Two wives!”

“Look, I know a new girlfriend makes you feel good now, but that shit wears off after the first few years. Plus, you’re cheating.

“Cheating?”

“Yeah, you’re cheating the goddamn system. You’re supposed to fuck around like everyone else, and keep a terrible secret that ultimately culminates into a heart-attack.”

“I’m already on meds for high blood pressure. How’s that any better?”

“Fair, but don’t come to me when both these women are driving you fucking crazy.”

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