No teacher would accept that construction from a beginning writer, the "had had," the four em dashes encasing a parenthesis, the double repetition of the last names, and then a pronoun with an ambiguous referent, requiring a repetition of a first name. But Ford makes the awkwardness work for him. Through the indirect discourse, we see both the wife, intent on controlling through reasonableness, and the marriage, turned overly formal. Omit the second "Reeves" and the effect evaporates. Ford’s opening sentence is a short story; it wants to uncoil. Perhaps there is even a literary echo of Raymond Carver’s Will You Please Be Quiet, Please?(4). Ford’s bourgeois repetition stands in contrast to Carver’s working-class version; each carries its own nuanced irony.