The master turns and questions the wife. "That mew - Would you say it was an interjection, or would you say it was an adverb?"
The wife, caught off guard by this query out of left field, refrains from answering. Truth be told, I wonder myself if the master's head isn't still swooning from the heat of the baths. Even forgetting the baths, the master is known for his eccentricity, so much so that a certain neighbor asserts that his nerves are frayed. The master, however, has full confidence in his own faculties. "My nerves are fine. It's these other schmucks who are off the rails," he maintains. If the neighbors call the master a "doggity dog," then in the name of fair play the master refers to the neighbors as "piggity pigs." For the sake of fair play, there's no end to which the master won't go. He only wades in deeper. Being such a fellow, the master thinks little of lobbing a quirky question at the wife. The wife, though, on the receiving end, can't but feel his nerves are on the edge. Caught off guard, she holds her tongue, a bewildered look on her face. I too, of course, am in no position to answer. In the next moment, the master breaks the silence.
"Hey!" he calls out.
"Yes?" the wife replies in surprise.
"That 'yes' of yours - an exclamation or an adverb? Which was it?"
"What's it matter what it was? Who really cares?"
"Everyone cares. Japan's liguistic scholars are grappling mightily with this very issue."
"Well I'll be. Including the mew of a cat? After all, it's not even part of our language."
"There's the rub. That's what makes it so hard. It's comparative research."
"I see." The wife is savvy enough to steer clear of the master's nonsense. "And what have they concluded?"