In Reply to: The wife posted by h.geater on July 15, 2009 at 17:23:
: Where did the term "the wife" come from?
I don't know the origin regarding use in "normal" conversation. But in journalism in the United States before reporters started injecting themselves into the story, there was a rule that a writer didn't refer to himself or herself. So if someone was writing a personal column, it got a little tricky. Instead of writing "my wife," he would write "the wife." Instead of "me," "this reporter" or "this writer."