The Universe of Discourse

Wed, 08 Feb 2023

Misinterpretation of ‘my’

A couple of years back I complained about this stupid interaction I had once had:

I was once harangued by someone for using the phrase "my girlfriend." "She is not 'your' girlfriend," said this knucklehead. "She does not belong to you."

Sometimes you can't think of the right thing to say at the right time, but this time I did think of the right thing. "My father," I said. "My brother. My husband. My doctor. My boss. My congressman."

"Oh yeah."

I was thinking about this today (not for any reason, it doesn't keep happening, fortunately) and I thought of a new variation. You wait for your opportunity, and before long it will go like this:

Knucklehead: (blah blah blah) … I'll check when I get back to my house.

You: You own a house? In this market? Wow, where'd you get the money?

Knucklehead (now annoyed by your quibbling): I rent a house. It belongs to my landlord.

You: You own a landlord?

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