Husbands: As you know, arguing is a humologargantuamegamondo part of being married.
The main thing to bear in mind about an argument with your wife is that you never, ever want to lose one. Losing an argument makes you look stupid.
Besides, would you ever even get into any argument with your wife if you didn't know, going in, that were 100% right about whatever it was you were arguing about? Of course you wouldn't. You're not stupid.
Remember: In an argument with your wife, you are right about the subject at hand. Don't let your wife's feminine wiles or disturbingly keen grasp of analytical logic distract you from this all-important fact.
You are right, you are right, you are right. All you have to do now is get her to acknowledge it. Here are three great ways to move her toward that excellent goal:
1. Don't talk. Never forget that silence is golden. If you're in an argument with your wife, it's unlikely that your case will be strengthened by you talking. If you clam up by reading or watching TV, chances are that your wife will eventually scream herself hoarse, and then give up the fight altogether. Score! Never forget that in a genuine argument a tie is as good as a win. Remember: one of the best strategies for proving victorious in an argument is to never really engage in that argument at all.
2. Change the subject. Oftentimes in an argument the wife will stubbornly insist on sticking to the subject. Don't let this dastardly strategy distract you from one of your key objectives in any argument with your wife, which is to as often and subtly as possible change the subject. As the darting fish avoiding the shark must be at one with the confusingly sparkling water, so you must learn to become the moving target that the arrow of your wife's reasoning can never quite reach or pierce.
As an example of how this strategy works, let us see what happens when Gary employs it during what might otherwise have become a sticky fight with his wife, Mary;
Mary: Gary, did you pick up the dry cleaning on your way home from work?
Gary: I wonder why they call it dry cleaning? Do they really not use water?
Mary: You forgot to pick up the dry cleaning, didn't you?
Gary: I'm sorry. I didn't.
Mary: Didn't what?
Gary: Didn't what you said.
Mary: What are you talking about?
Gary: What are you talking about?
Mary: The dry cleaning. I'm asking you if you picked up the dry cleaning on your way home from work.
Gary: I'm sorry. I did. But I forgot.
Gary: I didn't. Was I supposed to?
Mary: What are you talking about? Yes, you were supposed to pick up the dry cleaning. We talked about it on the phone right before you left the office! You were supposed to bring home the dress I was going to wear tonight!
Gary: That blue one, with the sleeves?
Mary: No. The red one. The strapless one. The really nice one?
Gary: Oh, is that one red? I like that. You look good in that. I like that fabric. You have another strapless dress in that blue sort of fabric, don't you?
Mary: What blue fabric? No. I only have one strapless dress. The red one!
Gary: That's not the only dress you have. Is that the only dress you have? You need to get some new dresses.
Mary: I have enough dresses. I just don't have the one I was going to wear right now, because, as usual, you didn't think it was important enough to remember ...
Gary: Are you hungry?
Mary: Oh, forget it.
See? Argument averted. And why? Because Gary stood firm in his resolution to never stay in one place for more than a second. Let that be a lesson to you.
3. Be conciliatory in a harsh tone. Women are extremely sensitive to tone. If in a harsh, argumentative tone you say things that are in fact conciliatory, you can oftentimes confuse your wife into not being sure whether she's winning or losing the argument. This can create a situation in which you can force the draw, or even go for the win. An arguing technique that can help turn the tide in any fight is to first say something conciliatory in a harsh tone, and to then respond to her questioning what exactly you meant with the classic, "Oh, great. So now what I actually say doesn't matter. The only thing that matters now is how I say it, right? Words have no meaning anymore. Great. Now we're in Crazytown." See how that works? First you concede just enough to let her think she's won something--and then you immediately regain the upper hand by accusing her of being too emotional to recognize when you've attempted a compromise. Perfect! You'll be back to having sex before you know it!
I could go on, but why? Using one or all of these strategic engagement techniques should be enough for you to win any argument with your wife. They've always worked for me, anyway.
Okay, fine. They've never worked for me. Ever. Not once. But I'm not going to let that stop me from continuing to use them in every fight I ever have with my wife. And I hope that you, my fellow men, will also never stop employing these venerable husband-arguing techniques, which I am sure you join me in feeling confident must one day, finally, if only one single stupid time EVER, prevail.
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This piece is included in HA!, a full-sized (36,000 words; 170 pages) collection of my humor writing. For this week only, HA! is ON SALE FOR 99 CENTS. (It's also FREE to borrow if you're a member of Amazon Prime.) Here's to starting 2012 with a laugh! (My friends: spread the word about HA!, if you would. I'd love it to make the revered Top 100 Kindle Books list. As I write, it's floating about in the 500's. One good push o' sharing/linking/Tweeting could do it! Thanks! Here's to the great gift of laughter!)