Tuesday, September 6, 2011


If your first thought that came to mind when you read "Prego!" was spaghetti sauce I know roughly how old you are. If you were wondering who was pregnant, well then...

My husband and I went to Italy this summer for our thirtieth wedding anniversary. Yes, we succumbed to 'vacation pressure'-- the need to have something sparkling to say at the next dinner party, or a casual opener at an informal business meeting i.e., 'When I was in Italy...'
Also, we really, really wanted to see Italy.

Anyway, my husband likes to fully immerse himself in a foreign country when he travels and by that I mean he selects one word that he offers back to the hotel concierge or taxi driver that makes him feel like a native despite his New York accent.

Prego is a great catchall word that means 'thanks,' 'you're welcome,' 'do you think the Yankees wil make the playoffs this year...' It became something of an obsession with him. In deference to the time zone issue, I would update my kids, nieces, parents, etc. about our time abroad via email. I put Prego! in the subject line.

This prompted the one and only phone call from my seventeen year-old son, who apparently had forgotten he even had parents until that email popped up on his Droid.

"Is my sister pregnant?" was the imperious question from many miles away. Mind you he has two married sisters but one already had a toddler. Of course he was referring to his recently married one.

"What?" my husband asked numbly, handing me the phone. 
"What are you talking about?" I asked stupidly, making no connection whatsoever to my subject line of the email...I was thinking spaghetti sauce.

He took that for a No. "Don't ever tease me like that again. I have to go now." Click. My son loooves being an uncle.

It seems that both my sons thought my few-months-married daughter was pregnant. I was stymied. I remembered we used to use the word 'preggers' when we'd eye our teacher's stomach, fervently wishing for the inevitable substitute we could lord over when maternity leave rolled around.  

From then on I was careful to leave the subject line blank on my emails.

When I got home, the daughter in question came to visit and see our 8,000 pictures. Another thing my husband enjoys about vacation.

"Can you believe your brothers thought you were pregnant? They thought I would leave to Italy and then share special news like this in an email." I looked at her hopefully.

"Actually," she admitted. "I thought you were pregnant."

Did I mention we went to celebrate our thirtieth anniversary?

"But then I realized you'd never say something like in an email."
Not that she didn't think my eggs had finally fried up at fifty, only that I wouldn't share that info in an email.
She had always been the logical one. Up until now.


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