Friday, February 13, 2009

Aaron's Unwanted Advice-Feb. 13, 2009 ("All This Pink and Red Gives Me the Hives") Edition

DEAR MARGO: My husband has a twin brother, "Mark," who lives in an apartment without heat or electricity. No, he’s not destitute; he’s actually a millionaire. He lives that way because his gas and electric were shut off last year when he went on an extended vacation and didn’t bother to forward his mail, including bills. Everything remains off because he "just doesn’t want to deal with" the gas and electric companies — they annoy him.

Now, all that would be fine with me (it is his life, after all) but for the fact that he keeps asking to come to our house to warm up, shower and sleep in a clean bed. I guess he "doesn’t want to deal with" basic housekeeping, either. His place is a mess — he never cleans up after himself. He also breaks things in our house, which he never takes responsibility for or offers to replace. And the guy has more money than I’ll probably ever see. The thing is: He is my husband’s twin, and he loves him and worries about him. I don’t ever want to come between my husband and "poor Mark," but I don’t want to be a victim of an unspeakably lazy nut-job who hasn’t found a "hobby" yet. What do you advise?



Normally, I would make a joke about coming between a husband and his twin and being the “meat in the sandwich,” but this slob sounds gross. There’s no such thing as “poor Mark,” because if he just can’t stand doing housework, he’s practically shitting nickels and can afford to hire a cleaning person. In the meantime, you need to assert your rights in your house (yes, it's your house too!) and explain to both hubby and “Mark” that if he’s going to stay with you (don’t start by banning him—at least right away—because that really will cause immediate problems), he needs to treat your property with respect. Start casually mentioning the irreplaceability of the things he’s broken—really punch up the “dead person” quotient (“My aunt Grace’s teapot, God rest her soul”). If he’s too obtuse to take the hint, hand him a bill for everything he breaks.

Don’t expect this message to sink in right away. He’s probably used to his status as Eccentric Millionaire and just takes for granted that he will not be held accountable for his damage—he takes it as his Divine Right, like Marie Antionette or something. Bear in mind how she ended up.

If your husband can’t grow a pair and help you enforce the rules, then he’s not much of a husband, is he? Tell him you hope he’s very happy living alone with “Mark” and that you hear there’s a big market for “twin porn” out there. Just sayin’.

DEAR ELLIE: I'm 40, male, divorcing from my wife of 14 years. Last May, I started dating a co-worker, 27; we both expressed love and discussed marriage and children. I introduced her to my two children as a friend. She claimed to love them and couldn't wait to take them out once my divorce is finalized. I felt reborn.

Eventually her parents learned we were dating and wanted her to stop because I was going through a divorce with children. They're Catholic like myself; one from Europe and the other from Mexico. She didn't want to leave me; we agreed to date secretly. However, the day after Thanksgiving she ended it.

She claims that her father threatened he'd disown her. But she once confided she'd used her parents to break up with a former boyfriend. What's the truth? She doesn't want any contact at all.



Oh, give it a rest with the “hurt” crap. What did you think was going to happen when you started dating a co-worker? I’m going to be generous and assume that you started dating this lady AFTER you started divorce proceedings. If not, then you deserve whatever the hell you get.

As to “truth” about the reasons for the breakup, there’s only one you need to concern yourself with, and that’s this: if a 27-year-old woman is still letting Mommy and Daddy run her life, you’re better off walking away. Can you imagine that in-law nightmare? They’d be standing over your bed during conception, tucking pillows under her ass to make sure the grandbaby would be the gender they wanted (Catholics of both ethnicities you mentioned are notoriously superstitious). They sound pushy as hell and would meddle in every aspect of your lives. Think “Everybody Loves Raymond.”

Feel better yet? I thought so.

DEAR AMY: I am one of seven children, all of whom are over the age of 40.

My older brother sexually molested me as a child over a long period. I really want to have nothing to do with this brother. I am polite when forced into a meeting with him (at family gatherings, etc.) but have no wish to have any relationship with him beyond that. When he calls, I don't answer the phone, and when he's in town, I make excuses not to see him.

Besides my feelings about the past, he is continually trying to borrow money from me, and I really don't have the desire or energy to deal with him. The rest of my family insists that I should just get over the past and learn to relate to him as an adult (although none of them is fond of him, either).

I always respond that I will think about it, and then I put it out of my mind until someone brings it up again.

My position is that I was the victim and I get to chose how to deal with this brother. My counselor agrees and has told me I am dealing with this appropriately. The rest of my family has no need to know I'm in counseling, but they sure are pushy in telling me how to deal with my brother. How do I get them off this subject?



It sounds like you’ve already “related to him as an adult,” before you were an adult, and against your will, no less. I agree with your counselor. I would go a step further and tell the rest of your family that you’ll “think about it” once he’s molested them. Until then, they can shut their faces. (Frankly, I can't believe that they would try to force a reconciliation after something like this--they don't sound like much of a family. Flush them.)

Don’t bother “making excuses” not to see him. Answer the phone to him once, and once only, explaining why you don't want to see him again, in no uncertain terms. If he persists in trying to contact you, notify the police—that’s harassment.
Some things just don’t get to be “bygones.” And again, the rest of your siblings should have no say in this, so put the smack down on them.

BONUS AMY (Aaron-style, in case you like your advice crude and profane, but without the dose of self-righteous arrogance):

DEAR AMY: I just found out that a sixth friend is pregnant and due around the date of my wedding! I've never known six people to be pregnant at the same time in my life, and this wonderful coincidence happens now! Please tell me how I can be happy for these people because right now I'm just furious.



Count backwards nine months from the date of this wedding on your Hello Kitty calendar. We’ll wait.

Finished? Now, circle that month—it’s popular for having sex!

Maybe next time you get married (because this won’t be the last one, if your personality is any indication), you should plan the wedding for the circled month, because it’s a lot easier to put on a bridesmaid’s dress (and listen to some spoiled bitch gassing about her wedding arrangements) if they're looking forward to some "bliss" of their own later on, than it is while they’re giving birth.

And if that doesn’t help, think of it this way: while you’re getting rice thrown at you (because nothing heavier was available), they’re going through intense labor pain. Some day it will be your turn (and I hope the baby has a watermelon-sized head).

DEAR MISS MANNERS: At a condo association meeting consisting of about 60 people, there was a head table with six people, facing about six rows of tables, about 5 feet away. In the front row were two ladies — not sitting next to each other — doing their needlework.

Is it proper to do needlework while at an event such as this? I noticed that the speakers were distracted (and so was I) by their movements. With them reading the directions and rearranging their work, we couldn’t help but turn their way to see what was going on. I say it is rude.


Proper or not, I say that you were lucky to get them there at all. Having attended more than my share of condo association meetings (even serving on the board at one point), I can say with complete authority that the meetings are deadly goddamned dull, and it’s like pulling teeth to get people there. 60 people? We were lucky to get 20!! People repeat themselves and ask insane, obtuse questions. I’d have killed to have a needle at the time, so I could shove it into my ear.

And frankly, if your speakers and attendees are so distracted by a couple of ladies doing needlework, then the subject matter must not be very compelling, must it? Try starting with a floor show next time.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Margo: I don't believe the guy is wealthy. Maybe he gambled it all away on line. Look hubby in the eye and ask him straight out. He knows his brother is destitute.
Dear Ellie: They were indeed dating while he was still married and now she has finally seen teh writing on the wall. He's a cad and will treat her like he treated his wife.
Dear Amy: Yes, tell the Asshat that if he calls again you'll get all Priest in prison on him!
Boner Amy: I mean Bonus;) How rude of your friends to get preggers just to ruin your wedding plans! Now they won't get you a wedding gift unless you get them a baby shower gift, damn the luck!
Dear Miss Manners: Those women should be ashamed. The clicking needles kept us all awake. Well at leaast their wasn't any snoring like last time. ed

8:25 AM  

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