The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

February 11, 2013

Mike Pound: Wife doesn’t ‘get’ sacred T-shirts

By Mike Pound

— Sometimes I think my wife isn’t even trying to understand me.

I don’t really ask for much, and, to be honest, I don’t actually expect her to understand me. But she could at least try.

I try to understand her.

For example, I try to understand why my wife sets two alarm clocks to go off an hour before she needs to get up, and then hits the snooze button every five or 10 minutes.

On Sunday afternoon, I was trying out a new shrimp etouffee recipe when my wife came home from the gym. When she walked into the kitchen, I noticed that she was wearing my Stan Musial shirt.

I know!

“You wore my Stan Musial shirt to work out?” I asked in my I-can’t-believe-you-did-that voice. I don’t use that voice very often because — since I live with my wife and our 15-year-old daughter, Emma — I would probably have to use it all the time. But when I saw my wife in my Stan Musial shirt, I couldn’t help myself.

My wife, hearing the voice, looked at me and very slowly said, “Nooooooo.”

My wife likes to wear oversized shirts when she goes to the gym, and my T-shirts, at least on her, qualify as oversized. I really don’t mind that my wife wears my T-shirts to the gym, but I don’t know what possessed her to think that my Stan Musial T-shirt was workout material.

Seriously, who thinks like that?

It would be like me wearing a pair of my wife’s Prada shoes on a float trip, even though I wouldn’t even know if my wife had a pair of Prada shoes since I don’t know what Prada shoes are.

When I first heard about Prada shoes, I thought they were made out of Russian newspapers, but then someone told me I was thinking of Pravda shoes.

Even if my wife did have Prada shoes, they wouldn’t fit me. And, to be honest, I probably wouldn’t want to wear them on a float trip anyway, so maybe the whole Prada comparison is wrong.

Except it isn’t.

See, it clearly wouldn’t make sense, on several levels, for me to wear a pair of my wife’s Prada shoes, and it doesn’t make sense for my wife to wear my Stan Musial T-shirt to the gym.

I tried to explain to my wife that the Stan Musial T-shirt is special. I tried to explain to my wife that the Stan Musial T-shirt is not a workout T-shirt.

“I only wear it on special occasions,” I said.

“Holy cow. Relax, grouch. It’s just a T-shirt,” my wife said.

For the second time: I know!

That’s right, my wife said my Stan Musial shirt is “just a T-shirt.” That’s like saying the Mona Lisa is just a painting or that the Grand Canyon is just a hole in the ground.

I was particularly taken aback by my wife’s lack of understanding given that Musial recently passed away. My wife doesn’t get things like that. One time, many years ago, my wife and I were having lunch in the Billy Goat Tavern in Chicago when the late, great newspaper columnist Mike Royko walked into the bar with his family and sat in a booth not far from us.

I told my wife who Mike Royko was and how much I liked his work.

“Well, go say ‘hi’ to him,” she said.

Yeah, right. So anyway, I didn’t say “hi” to Mike, and unfortunately he passed away a few months later.

OK, maybe that time my wife was right ... but still.

I told my wife that my Stan Musial shirt is special. I told her that it must not be worn to the gym.

“Fine,” my wife said. “Next time, I’ll wear one of your Jimmy Buffett shirts.”

For the third time: I know!

DO YOU HAVE AN IDEA for Mike Pound’s column? Call him at 417-623-3480, ext. 7259, or email him at Follow him on Twitter @mikepoundglobe.