If an engineer goes out to the store with his non-engineer wife, there are a few things the wife has learned (hopefully) never to ask. They could be considering the purchase of a car or computer or a set of dish towels, it does not matter.

She likely has learned not to throw these questions out there from experience – long, slogging, arduous experience. Here are a few of the key questions not to ask. We will call them anti-questions.

Doesn’t that color look pretty?

What do you feel about this?

How about we splurge a little?

His wife might as well be speaking some Sumerian. The engineer will have no idea how to respond to the first two, and will easily respond to the last question with a resounding, “That would not be wise use of our funds.”

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