In life, there are a variety of pads. Shoulder pads. Elbow pads. Pads with wings.

Lord only knows why they have wings. Maybe these pads can fly. Maybe every time a bell rings a pad gets its wings. Who knows? I certainly do not. As a husband – as a man – there are just some things I do not even try to understand. Fear gets the better of me,  you see.

My wife brought home Pad Thai (another kind of “pad” to be sure) from Jade Garden, a local Asian restaurant, on New Year’s Eve. The serving size is always huge. Jesus could have easily divvied it up to feed the 5,000 in the Bible without any need for food multiplication miracles. That being the case, whenever Becki gets Pad Thai there is always a Styrofoam box in the fridge afterward.

Later in the evening Becki made an announcement: “You know what I’m craving?  Pad Thai on a cracker.”

That’s a new one, I thought. I began to imagine her carefully piling Pad Thai noodles onto a cracker and eating it as if it were some sort of Asian pâté.

“You want what again?” I inquired.

“Pad Thai. On a cracker.”

“You want me to put it on a cracker?”

“Yes, like I always do.”

“Pad Thai. On a cracker.”

“Yes! On a cracker!”

“You want me to somehow fit noodles and eggs and tofu and who knows what else on a cracker?”


“No. I want Pad Thai on a cracker. Pad Thai, Chad.  Pad Thai.”


We had gone grocery shopping earlier that day, and in a whirl of world-conscious New Year’s whimsy, Becki had purchased Braunschweiger.  Another name for it is (are you ready for this) pâté.  Imagine my wife speaking this word in Wisconsinese. Imagine my wife, who is slightly hearing impaired, who cannot tell the difference between “pal” and pail,” pronouncing “Pâté.”  In case you cannot imagine what this word would sound like coming out of her mouth, just know it sounds a lot like Pad Thai.

Pad Tie. Knee pads and neck-ties. Pads with wings and clip-on ties.  iPad. You pad. We all pad. The English language was invented to foil a fool like me.

Becki got her pâté on a cracker without incident. No Pad Thai was harmed during this semantic drill. I, on the other hand, was wounded deep in my psyche by this exchange. I half-expect to visit Jade Garden in the future and find a strange new item on the menu: Pâté. Or even better, Pad Thai with wings.