One day my wife, Erin, and I were driving from Springfield, Missouri, to Nashville, Tennessee, to attend a conference. In the days leading up to the trip Erin had asked me to consult AAA about the best way to get to Nashville. As a guy, I resented her request and felt I could get us there as well as AAA could. I spent several hours diligently studying maps. Finally, I found a route that was basically a straight line.
Several hours into the trip I was feeling great because my route was perfect. We were 30 minutes ahead of AAA's schedule. I was king of the road.
Erin and I were laughing and singing, and miles back she'd stopped asking me if I knew where we were. Then all of a sudden Erin said, "Did you see that sign? I swear it read 'dead end.'"
"Nice try," I joked. "You just can't admit that I was right and you were wrong."
"I'm serious," she said. "I think this road dead ends."
"This road does not dead end," I shot back. "Trust me!"
We continued to drive for about an hour while neither of us spoke, waiting for the truth to be revealed. The surrounding area began to be less populated until it became cornfields as far as the eye could see. And then it happened.
I barely stopped the truck in time to avoid crashing into the large "dead end" sign.
"That's impossible," I shouted in disbelief. "This wasn't on the map!"
The worst part was that Erin didn't say anything. She just sat there with a look of disdain, shaking her head from side to side. So I did what any man would do in this situation. I got out of the truck to survey the area.1