You see, Jack LOVES throwing out impossible, ridiculous, and bizarre hypothetical situations to see what I'll answer. It seems this exercise can be prompted by any number of things, but usually is a result of me saying something absolute like "I will never eat meat ever again".
Enter Jack: "You'll never eat meat EVER again? What if the government imposed a law and you HAD to eat meat, and you could only choose 1 kind of commonly eaten animal to not eat. What would you pick?"Or sometimes I'll proclaim that I "hate" something - a real no-no in Jack's book - and I am berated with questions about hatred, even if I was just saying it willy-nilly. For example, if I say "I hate Paris Hilton and everything she stands for", Jack will create any number of scenarios in which perhaps I would NOT hate Paris Hilton.
"That would never happen."
"But what if it did?"
"But why would the government make me eat something I don't want to eat? That doesn't even make sense. Why do they care what I eat??"
"Come on! You only get to pick one that you don't have to eat. You'd pick pigs, right?"
"I suppose, but it's never going to happen so I don't have to make a decision, now do I?"
"Would you hate her if the two of you were the only two people left on earth and you HAD to be friends?"I think it drives him nuts when I won't just answer, but as Kenneth on 30 Rock says: "I don't do hypothetical situations - that's like lying to your brain." Plus, it's kind of fun making him re-define the hypothetical again and again until he gets so frustrated he just stops. It's not a quick process, but eventually he gives up.
"Who would make us be friends if there's no one else left on earth?"
"Well, I mean if you really got to know her I bet you'd find she's a nice girl. You shouldn't say you hate her."
"But I do, is the thing. And we're not going to be the last two humans on the planet, so I don't have to worry about her changing my mind on that."
"Well, what if Spot were drowning and Paris Hilton risked her life and jumped into the ocean to save him? THEN would you hate her?"
Jack's Two Cents: The people who now say "that would never happen" about mandated meat consumption are the same people who once said "that would never happen" when asked a hypothetical question involving a black president. Also, aren't you familiar with the importance of scenario planning, Jill? The first step in scenario planning is often to identify the worst or most unexpected scenario and then figure out how you'd respond in such a situation. When I ask you these hypothetical questions, you see, I'm really just helping prepare you to make the best decision when you actually find yourself stranded on an island with Paris Hilton. You will thank me one day.