My wife and I started watching DVDs of “24” last fall. Yeah, yeah, I know, it’s crack cocaine in handy disk format. In fact I’m right now in withdrawal waiting for the last season to get released at Blockbuster. Couldn’t watch it on TV with commercials and all that “waiting a week between episodes” crap–messes up my fix.
Halfway through Season Three I realized something. My wife thinks I’m her Chloe.
If you haven’t seen the show (perhaps you just recently thawed out of cryogenic hibernation) I’ll try to clue you in. Chloe is a Counter-Terrorism-Unit data analyst. Her usually renegade boss, Jack Bauer, frequent CTU field agent, is constantly getting data downloads from her on his PDA of building schematics, NSA data, satellite photos, ring tones, latest posts from BCC, that kind of thing. Say he’s with a SWAT team storming a warehouse stacked to the ceiling with terrorists and biological weapons, Chloe’s busy at the office emailing him everything about these jerks from their genealogical charts to their I-Pod play lists, anything Jack can use to break them under interrogation. She’s really good, except she’s got this personality disorder not yet listed in the DSM IV. For instance, she’s huffy with Jack and he says, “Nobody talks to me that way Chloe.” She sneers and says, “Well Jack, that’s odd, cause I just did. And Jack, don’t know if you’ve looked at your watch recently, but it’s about 5 minutes before the hour, so don’t be surprised if something unexpected happens in about 5 minutes.”
So one day I realize my wife’s like Jack running her crazy errands every day, and I’m at the office, supposed to be practicing law, while she keeps calling me up begging for data.
Her: I’m lost. I need you to tell me where I am.
Me: Don’t know. In a car maybe? Did you recently pass a street that had a name?
Her: Yeah, but I was going too fast to see it. I’m looking for a Wal-Mart. I’m near Buford. I think I’m going to have to pee.
Me: Okay, let me see. Here’s the address for a Wal-Mart in Buford. There’s Yahoo Maps. Okay …Buford. It’s near Hwy 31–have you passed that? I still think the car seat catheter would be a great invention.
Her: No. Yes. No. !#$%^&*@! I don’t know. Wait, there’s a Target. Where are the *&^%$$#@ street signs?
Me: Let me see–Target home page. Locations. You know, I really like their commercials. Did you ever notice that red circle trademark actually looks like a target? Here’s the address for a Target in Buford. It’s on the corner by Friendship Road. I’m clicking back to the map–that’s west of the Wal-Mart. Are you going west or east?
Her: &^%&^%%$#%@! I don’t know. You were too cheap to get the navigational system for the car!
Her: Okay I’m in Wal-Mart by the deodorant–I need a building layout. Hurry! Need to find the kid’s department for some socks, then the toy department for a motorized scooter, then go pee. Real bad.
Me: Roger that. Uh, got it. Go left past four aisles, turn right past the bras and you’ll run into the socks. Then go right down the same aisle a ways and the bikes and scooters are on the left after candies and cards.
Her: Where’s the toilet?
Me: Hold on …there are some adult diapers on aisle 9. Let’s see, there’s a toilet at the front, but I’ve got a surveillance camera feed now. Looks like it’s out-of-order. But wait, now I’m inside. No, it’s not out-of-order, but only one stall is working and someone’s in there–reading a newspaper! I thought you said women didn’t do that.
Me: Look, you’re not going to make it. I’m calling in the SWAT team right now with a Port-A-Potty.
Are you someone’s Chloe?
 My wife has reviewed this dialogue and had only 3 objections: (i) “I rarely swear … that much,” (ii) “Why do you keep on saying ‘toilet’–it’s ‘bathroom,’ or ‘restroom’–the toilet is the thing in the restroom” and (iii) “If you drank 8 glasses of water a day like you’re supposed to, you’d have to pee (at least you didn’t say ‘urinate’) a lot too, especially if you’ve birthed 3 children, make that your children.”