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A Conversation With "She" of That's What She Said

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John
Did you ever imagine you'd become such a pop culture phenomenon?

She
I really can't believe it. I have no idea how it even started--I mean, I'm a suburban wife and mother from Livingston, New Jersey. My husband thinks it's a hoot!

John
Right, a hoot. You know, some people aren't laughing at all--did you hear about that middle school kid who got detention for making a reference to you in his class?

She
Yes, I did. I've never met him and have no idea why he'd even suggest that he'd overheard me say such thing. I think it's shameful. That's no kind of talk for school. In my opinion, he should have been expelled. The school system has gone soft.

John
You think the punishment should have been...?

She
Harder, definitely harder. I like it hard--the harder the better. If you're not going to give it good and hard, then why bother at all?

John
You, a...you mean the punishment?

She
Obviously. What else would I be talking about?

John
Right. Of course you were talking about punishment. So tell me, do you work?

She
Yes, once the kids headed off to school, I went back to my career. I'm a Reference Librarian--I just love it!

John
Let me guess--it's a hoot?

She
Oh, it is! But sometimes it can be challenging. Recently one of the academic journals we carry had gotten too extensive.

John
You don't say?

She
Yes, it just won't fit. No matter how I try...it's just too tight. I mean, no one likes 'em big more than I do--ask around! But when it's that big--no matter how exciting I am to get my hands on it--when it doesn't fit, I get frustrated.

John
I...um, it's just that. Ahem, you know, what I think you're trying to say must be...

She
What's the matter with you--why are you turning red? I mean, it's the Oxford Literary Review--what library wouldn't want a full set of bound copies in their stacks? The depth and breadth of the collection is spectacular. Unfortunately, space becomes an issue, so instead we simply subscribe to the online version.

John
I see. Hey--are you familiar with the show Three's Company?

She
Sure--why do you ask?

John
Just curious. Anyway, you say your kids are at school?

She
Oh yes, my husband and I couldn't be prouder. Jim Jr. is studying Criminal Justice at Fordham, and our youngest, Peter, is at the Culinary Institute of America.

John
That's wonderful--maybe he'll be the next Bobby Flay?

She
He's better already! During the summer he loves to fire up the grill--his steaks are to die for!

John
I'm sure they are.

She
Sometimes I can't help but yell, "Hey Petey--hurry up and give me some of your meat, and make it juicy 'cause mama's hungry." I may be biased because he's my son, but when I get his meat in my mouth, I just can't gobble it down fast enough!

John
...

She
Hello?

John
How can you not see what you're doing?

She
What?

John
This whole time--everything you're saying..."you love it hard, you like 'em big, you can't get enough of Petey's juicy meat." My God, you're like Andrew Dice Clay in an outfit from Talbots!


She
First off Mr. Fancy Writer, how do you know about Talbots? Isn't that kind of an odd reference for a "man" to make? And secondly, get your mind out of the gutter! Haven't you ever heard of context?

John
OK, I heard you put quotes around "man." Not cool. And look--I can see that what you're saying isn't a big deal in context, but what if someone happened to walk by...what would they think?

She
They might think, "Wow, Wayne Coyne looks fatter in person."

John
Oh, so I can't make a Talbots joke but you can slide in a Flaming Lips reference? How dare you! The bottom line is, I'm just surprised you don't exercise a bit more discretion, especially considering the reputation you've acquired.

She
Reputation? I'm a 53 year-old library professional!

John
You're 53...really?

She
Yes, 54 in May.

John
Well, you really don't look it.

She
I do Tae Bo three times a week.

John
It shows.

She
Thanks. And I'm sorry about that fat joke--you look fine.

John
That's sweet. Well, I guess I should let you get back to your family.

She
Actually, my husband is away for work. I've got the house to myself.

John
The whole house...all to yourself?

She
Yup. Wanna' come nail me like a loose floorboard?

John
That's what she said!

She
I know--it was me that said it.

John
Oh, right. Whatever--you want to drive or should I?

She
That's what I said!

John
Clever. Will you just stuff a sock in it?

She
That's what I said!

John
Oh screw this--I've going home to watch Glee on TiVo.

She
That's what I said!

John
That doesn't even make sense. Now you're just embarrassing yourself.