Responding with "Why?" to a binary question First, an example: Me: "Do you have to work tonight?" Wife: "Why?" Me: "Does your work schedule depend on my reason for asking?" Wife: *playfully punches me in the arm* "No, I don't have to work tonight, smartass." Me: Does this type of response bother anyone else? Obviously, we must assume the question is reasonable; I've no issues responding with, "That's none of your business," or "Why?" to presumptuous questions. However, wouldn't the polite thing be to first answer the question and then ask for a reason if you're curious and one isn't given?