Retail clerks, recovering accountants, and others who hold me in low esteem have begun to wish me "a good one." They say, 'êHave a good one'ê instead of 'êHave a good day.'ê
Perhaps they ceased wishing me a 'êgood day'ê to avoid my devastating rejoinders:
- Great idea. Why didn'êt I think of it first?
- I'êve already had mine this month.
- Not today, but Friday might work.
- Thanks, but I'êm married.
- I have other plans.
- The probing: 'êOne What?'ê
- The confrontational: 'êAnd then what?'ê
- The non-committal: 'êI will consider it.'ê
- The avaricious: 'êWhat not a good two, or even a good eight?'ê
- The retributive: 'êThe same to you if you'êre a Yankee fan.'ê
I am befuddled by 'êhave a good one.'ê Exactly what are they suggesting: A good day? A good quadruple bypass? A good soup and salad lunch? A good religious epiphany? A good tea party? A good bowel movement? A good Zen koan? The possibilities are endless.
I could reply politely with, 'êHave a good one yourself.'ê But what if the recovering accountant meant, 'êHave a good attack of shingles?'ê I would not wish shingles on anyone other than a Yankee fan.
I am currently testing five responses to 'êhave a good one'ê:
Thus far, the above rejoinders have elicited remarkably similar responses — 'êasshole,'ê 'êjerk,'ê and 'êI discern that you are not a native Seattleite.'ê
Results of my research will be published in Tenure: The Journal of Academic Academics.