Daddy and Mommy love each other very much. It’s super important that you understand that. But sometimes we have adult-caliber conversations that might sound like we’re mad at each other and like maybe Daddy wants to do a backflip three-quarter facelock falling inverted DDT off the turnbuckle on Mommy. That’s a wrestling move invented by Naomichi Marufuji. We can talk about that later. Daddy doesn’t want to complicate the issue. The point Daddy is trying to make is that he loves Mommy. And Mommy almost certainly loves Daddy. 

This whole thing is kind of silly, really. You know that Mommy’s office moved to the West End, right? Mommy can’t get any covered parking in the West End, so she has been using the city of Dallas’ meters, which have a new feature called PayByPhone that allows people to do just what the name suggests. Once you have the app installed and an account set up, it’s easy and convenient. Even you could probably figure it out. 

When Mommy brought home her first $35 parking ticket, Daddy was not happy. But these things do happen to adults from time to time, and, anyway, Mommy swore that the parking people had made a mistake, that she’d actually paid the meter, and she promised to dispute the ticket in the allotted 15-day period. Daddy put it out of his mind.

But then Mommy brought home another $35 ticket. And due to Mommy’s negligence, that first ticket, left uncontested, increased to $65. Daddy doesn’t want to bore you with all the details. Just know that over the course of many weeks, warnings arrived in the mail with some regularity, and Daddy continued to remind Mommy to attend to her tickets, and each time Mommy promised she would. Nevertheless, Mommy wound up with three $95 parking tickets. If you times $95 by 3, that equals $285.

Mommy finally explained to Daddy that she’d figured out why the parking people kept giving her tickets even though she’d paid the meter. It was because she had set up her account such that PayByPhone thought she lived in Montreal. That’s a city in Canada, which is a totally different country from the United States! Well, not totally different. It’s like the United States, only colder and with fewer handguns. 

Anyway, Daddy read the fine print on the tickets and learned that the Montreal mix-up didn’t matter because Mommy had waited too long to contest the tickets. We have to pay the $285. That’s when Daddy lost his mind a little.

Daddy had to explain that he and Mommy run a small business together. It is called our household. Daddy posed a hypothetical question to Mommy: if you had a business partner who you trusted, and you warned this partner about a problem that, if left unaddressed, would needlessly cost the company money, and that partner ignored the problem for many weeks, until it was too late, how would you feel? Because Mommy apparently thought Daddy’s hypothetical question was also a rhetorical one, he answered it for her. You would be mad!

And, no, Daddy wasn’t yelling. Daddy has to remind Mommy frequently that there is a difference between yelling and speaking emphatically. If you want to hear Daddy yell, then Daddy can yell for you. 

Did you notice how Mommy responded? First she said she was very busy—and not just from 9 to 5. She also coordinates carpool every week, and she organizes the wine-pull fundraiser, and she figured out why your brother’s e-textbook wasn’t working, and so on. When Daddy explained that he, too, is busy but that doesn’t stop him from being a good business partner, then Mommy changed tactics. Please tell Daddy you noticed this. Mommy said, “Clearly you just want to keep being mad at me.” 

Are you frickin’ kidding Daddy?

So there’s a time limit on being mad, and the business partner who screwed up gets to determine how long it is. Is that how it works? Well, as Daddy told Mommy, if he goes out with his friends next Friday and spends $285 and doesn’t come home until, like, noon the next day, without ever once calling to tell Mommy where he is, then Mommy has exactly six minutes to be mad.  

Oh, man. Daddy needs to take a deep breath. Maybe he should go to his happy place for a while. All his love for Mommy has gotten him a little worked up.