Monday, March 30, 2009

One More Reason To Like Sean Penn

Not only did he divorce Madonna once (well, OK, he had to marry her first, but everyone's entitled to some temporary insanity), but he also makes Bill O'Reilly angry.

And an angry Bill O'Reilly is one that could eventually have a heart attack.

Keep up the good work, Sean.

(Yeah, I don't have much compassion where the Fox News Garden Gnome is concerned. Tough.)

Friday, March 27, 2009

Aaron's Unwanted Advice (3/27/09)

DEAR ELLIE: We're both 24, and I've always loved him. He was my high school sweetheart, but it didn't work out then. Now he's finally committed to me. I trust him, but feel emotional turmoil from the relationship. I'm hoping to marry him, and all my family and friends expect it. I hear marriage jokes and questions all the time. They ask him, too.

He wants to take the relationship day by day, but I'm searching for him to commit all the way. He has trouble expressing his feelings, although he does everything and anything to keep me happy. He also can be temperamental and gets grouchy with me for no reason.

He's only a manager at a retail store, but dreams of becoming a policeman and says he needs to establish himself first. He's taking forever working on these things, and I fight with him all the time over his future job and commitment to me. I want to be married before I'm 28.

Yesterday he said that if I go on like this, I should break up with him because he cannot take all the pressure and mistrust. Being without him makes me miserable and incomplete, but I also want him to hurry up with our lives. What do I do?



I don’t know what the hell you’re going to do—and frankly I don’t care—but I hope he makes lots of tracks before you and your mutant family suck all of the life out of him.

If I were he, I’d have reservations about committing to you, too. Your description of his job as “only a manager at a retail store” indicates that he doesn’t quite measure up, but that “you see some potential” once he’s a “respectable” cop. And I don’t know how much experience you have with vocational training (your letter indicates a fourth-grade education at best), but it takes time to go through police academy, not to mention the requirements that have to be met beforehand—in short, “establishing himself.” Your impatience and subtle disdain are probably what caused him to pack it up the first time—this second chance was a gift, so don't screw it up.

By the way, I’m curious—what happens when you turn 28? Do you turn back into a pumpkin or something? Get a grip. It’s not unheard of for people to get married later. And you don't have any right to expect him to get on with "your lives." He's responsible for his life, and he should take his time. If that's too long for you, take a hike and find some other poor schmuck to build a fantasy life around. Your concept of “forever” is a hoot. It probably takes “forever” to dry your jeans at the Laundromat.

So treat this similarly: if the wait bores you, bring a good book. And turn off “The Bachelor.” It’s clearly poisoning what’s left of your mind.

DEAR MISS MANNERS: I am being swamped with e-mail from acquaintances who want me to forward pictures, videos, poems and such to others.
Often the senders demand "I want this back!" as proof that I have read the message. Many times the messages are in the form of a chain letter, promising me good luck if I forward them and bad luck if I don't.

I don't have time for this. It is becoming annoying.

I delete the messages but continue on occasion to send brief "thinking of you" e-mail with no reference to the lengthy chain letters, hoping that they will get the hint -- but every day I receive six or seven of these messages.

Is there anything else I can do to discourage them without being rude? I would like to maintain contact with these people but not like this.


Only six or seven a day?? You’re living my dream. I usually just delete the forwarded messages unless they’re for a cause I really care about, or have personal messages from the senders attached to them. But those are few and far between.

My favorite forwarded e-mails are the ones alerting us to a certain missing girl from California. It’s the same bucktoothed girl whose picture has been floating around since e-mail began. She must be menopausal by now. But there are people—lots of people—who believe this girl is still missing, which proves that they don’t read their forwards, either, because if they did, they’d remember seeing her picture the last time.

I especially despise (and believe there’s a spiky chair in hell reserved for) the chain e-mail writers who use “I Want This Back” or, worse yet, “This Is Sweet! I Better Get it Back!” as the subject line. I delete them immediately without opening them, but am always tempted to write back, “Or what?” I mean, if it’s such a “sweet” message, aren’t they doing it a disservice to attach an implied threat to it?

Simply deleting the chain messages is the easiest thing to do. But if you really can’t stand getting them all the time, you can send a very nicely worded note saying that your inbox gets full too fast to respond to forwarded messages unless they’re personal. If you’re thinking of them, tell them so in a fresh message—the fact that it won’t include “Fwd:” in the subject line will probably get their attention even faster (I know it does mine).

DEAR ABBY: Last night, I went to the movies and took an aisle seat in the back row. Two different couples came in late, and each one asked me to move over so they could sit together. I said, "I got here early, and I like this seat." I did not go on to explain that I have a torn tendon in my knee and needed the seat in order to stretch my leg.

They became upset and were very rude. If the seats were so important, they could have arrived early or on time.

Abby, my husband died in an airplane crash many years ago. I would give anything to have my husband in the same theater, the same city, the same planet! Couldn't those people spend two hours separated by one seat from their spouse?



I’m sorry to hear about the loss of your husband, but you’re switching topics here. Which are we supposed to feel, indignation on your behalf that these folks arrived late, or sympathy for you over your husband’s death? Your issues seem to be bleeding together, and it looks like you’re using the loss of your husband to bolster your defense now because you sense that you handled the theatre situation wrong.

And you’re correct!

I agree, it’s tacky and rude for people to arrive late to an event and expect others to get up and move for them. But I don’t think it would have killed you to tell them that you needed the aisle seat for your injured leg. I doubt they would have demanded an explanation and they probably would have left you alone after that.

But you insisted on letting them know, in your not-so-subtle little way, that they didn’t pass the Etiquette White Glove Test. In a perfect fantasy world, they tuck their tail between their legs and hang their head in shame like Scooby Doo.

Nope. Sorry, it don’t happen that way. People don’t like being judged (even when they’re wrong), so expect rudeness in these instances.

Next time, wait until the movie comes out on DVD.

DEAR AMY: I have a family member who wreaks havoc whenever a family function is being planned by saying, "If you invite so-and-so, I'm not coming over."

What do you think of this behavior—and perhaps more important, what do you think of family members who give in to her demands just to keep her from nagging them and stressing them out?


I think the family sounds like a bunch of weenuses (weeni?) with no spines. They need to pull their thumbs out of their asses and tell her to go sit on it. To be honest, she sounds like someone I wouldn’t want to have around anyway, so if she makes such a threat again, they should tell her they’ll invite whomever the hell they want, and if she chooses not to attend, they’ll enjoy the peace and quiet.

If they insist on being nice, they can wish her a safe and speedy journey home.

DEAR MARGO: I have been in a relationship for three years. We are both 33, never married, no kids. He lives with his aunt and attends college. I live alone and we see each other on weekends. He has always been opinionated and insists his way is always right, but recently it’s been getting worse. He tells me things like, "I don’t give a rip about your feelings" and "Your opinion is stupid." I’ve heard the last one plenty lately.

I’ve given this man my time, love and money, and have received this poor treatment (with attitude) in return. I have been the best girlfriend I can possibly be, but it’s never good enough. He finds fault in the smallest details and has threatened divorce even though we’re not married! He has broken up with me three times so far. He is losing friends because of his attitude, and he’s about to lose me. There are some good things about him, but they do not outweigh the bad. I don’t know where all this is coming from. I hate to give up on him since we’ve invested so much time together. What do I do?



Next time he “threatens divorce,” tell him not to let the doorknob get buried in his

I’m betting that he’s always been a prick, but up until now he was smart enough to recognize the goose that laid his golden eggs (and laid him, come to that). Since he’s now lost even that virtue, it’s time to set his bags out on the lawn.

(And his suitcases, too.)

Monday, March 23, 2009

Chock Full o' Cheerful News Monday

Here are just a few of the rosy spots in today's headlines:


Like mother, like son: Nicholas Hughes, the son of poets Sylvia Plath and Ted Hughes, committed suicide in Alaska last week. He had been battling depression for some time, says his sister, Freida Hughes. He had recently left his teaching post in the oceanography department of the University of Alaska at Fairbanks to set up a pottery at his home. Was he planning to make bell jars? (Sorry. Bad joke.)

No longer a close fit: A spokesman for the U.S. Agency for International Aid says that they have decided to change providers for the billions of condoms that they ship to poor countries. Like everything else in America, the new condoms will be made in China. This will essentially put the lid on the coffin of Alatech, an Alabama company that has been the sole U.S. distributor for several years. The spokesman, who only spoke on condition of anonymity (gee, we haven't heard that in five whole minutes), says part of the reason for the switch is that the government recently dropped the "buy American language" in a recent appropriations bill.

That leads me to believe that this organization has been lying in wait to take these jobs away for a long time, which is despicable. I think any organization that takes jobs out of America should have their earmark money revoked. Period.

If Mama Ain't Happy, Ain't NOBODY Gonna Be Happy: I enjoyed this Trib column from Dawn Turner Trice, who visited a few of the bars on Northalsted (yes, that's the official name of the area--don't use that extra "H!") to check out the growing trend of brides-to-be having their bachelorette parties in gay bars with male strippers.

According to many of the girls that Trice interviewed (the lucid ones, anyway), girls feel safer at these establishments knowing that they can party hearty without worrying about some nasty ol' straight guys pawing at them. (Perhaps they'd feel safer if they had their party at home and didn't drink like Elaine Stritch.) Ironically, Trice notes, as they get more inebriated, these women become the "pawers," behaving with the strippers just like the straight men they want to avoid. Apparently, the alcohol makes them forget that there's nothing that could make these particular men less attracted to them. (Oh, whoops, I forgot, there is: drunkenness. We have our own sloppy messes to deal with.)

As a result of the Prop 8 furor, a few Northalsted bars, like Cocktail and Sidetrack, are refusing to host bachelorette parties until gays have equal marriage rights (which seems only fair to me--why the hell should these people take up space in the places that we've built up and rub our faces in the fact that we don't have what they do?). Remind me to patronize these places more often, even if they're way outside my neighborhood. Trice asked one female reveler if she didn't find it heterosexist to hold these parties in gay bars. The girl replied it hadn't occurred to her: "I can see how it might be frustrating for gay men. Maybe I'll have to think about that next time."

Yeah. You do that, honey. In the meantime, have fund at the VFW hall, because we're taking back our neighborhoods.


That's all the happy-happy-joy-joy for today. On the plus side, we're one day closer to warm weather. Woo hoo.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Aaron's Unwanted Advice (3/20/09)

DEAR AMY: My husband and I haven't even been married a year, but already people are starting to ask, "Are you pregnant yet?"

My husband and I don't want to have children. Whenever I tell people that we aren't planning to have any kids, they seem to make it their personal mission to persuade me to have a baby, or assure me that this is only a phase and I will change my mind. How do we avoid these conversations?

We will be deflecting these questions for the next 50 childless years. Help!



Sadly, that’s part of the Brave New Society we live in. There is no such thing as a personal choice, because people are so used to the reality TV-perpetuated illusion of a communal society that they believe all of us are just a-hankerin’ after their “coaching.” In their own eyes, they’re all Simon, Paula, Janice, Tyra and all the other Botox injections rolled into one now, and the whole world is their desperate, eager contestant. Must be some thin air up in them clouds.

The best way to handle these buttinskies is to tell them firmly and gently, “My husband and I don’t want children.” If they persist, tell them that you’ll be delighted to have children—as long as they’ll raise them. It’s almost worth it to catch the haunted look on their normally bovine faces.

Family is another matter—they tend to be more hardcore, so they’ll require tougher handling. If they start in, tell them it’s your decision and it’s not for discussion. If they persist, tell them if they ask again you’ll get your tubes tied.

DEAR ABBY: My boyfriend, "Josh," won't leave me alone. We have been living together for almost a year, and he is the ultimate overprotector. When I start to leave the house to run errands or anything, he stops me and asks, "Where do you think you're going?" When I tell him, he will then follow me to the location.

I love Josh and would never want to hurt his feelings, but I think he's a little too worried about me. I'm an adult, and I can take care of myself. Is Josh being too overprotective, or am I just crazy?



No, he is. What you describe is not “protective,” sweetheart—we call it “possessive,” and it can escalate until it becomes “abusive” and he ends up keeping you prisoner in that house. Start saving for your own apartment.

In the meantime, you can let him follow you into the bathroom next time and proceed to spend a roll of pennies right in front of him. That ought to fix his little wagon.

DEAR MARGO: I have been dating this guy for a year now, living with him for nine months, and there have been discussions about marriage. I see a grand future for us, as he has a stable job, my parents and friends love him, and he is supportive of whatever I want to do for my own future.

The problem is that one day, while discussing our future, he mentioned that he had a mental list of the things he wants to see in me before popping the question. He asked me if I wanted to know what was on the list, but I said, "No, thank you." My reasoning was that in my haste to get a ring I might subconsciously do or become all the things he wants, temporarily. I am who I am.

My guess would be that the things on the list aren’t major personality changes — more akin to picking up a little more around the apartment. But now I find myself constantly thinking about the stupid list. I just wish he would never have mentioned it. How do I forget about this and get on with my wonderful life with him?



Conditional partnership doesn’t sound so “grand” to me, and that’s what this sounds like. Frankly, if someone told me he had a “list” of suggestions for me, I’d make one very brief (and crude) suggestion to him.

But maybe that’s just me.

The next time you’re having one of your “discussions” with Mr. McDreamy, you should casually ask him when his self-improvement courses begin, then tell him you’ll give him a head start because he’s going to need it. As you said, you are what you are, and if this guy has a problem with that, he can go fly a tampon kite.

(Kudos to you for telling him “no” when he asked if you wanted to hear his list. That should put things nicely in perspective and let him know what you think of his ultimatums—hopefully, he’s smart enough not to bring it up again.)

DEAR ELLIE: I'm madly in love with my boyfriend of two years; we've talked marriage. Things were once great, though six months ago things got shaky. Today I jokingly said I won a lottery but would give him only $400. He knew it was a lie, but got upset with me. He changed his number and won't give me it.

I'm hurt, and stressed. Though he doesn't want me, I still want him.



Why? He took offense at a harmless comment (assuming that he knew you were joking) and wasted no time in cutting off contact with you on the same day. What would happen if you were married and you did something really bad—say, accidentally spilling juice on the floor? Would he clean out his half of the closet and move to Europe without telling you? What a cuckoo.

Frankly, he sounds like a vindictive pussy. You’re well rid of him.

DEAR MISS MANNERS: A calling card fell out of my copy of a 1905 edition of Edith Wharton’s “The House of Mirth” when I cut one of the many uncut pages (the better to read). The card measures roughly 2 by 3 inches and has the name “Miss Wallace” in the center, “125 East Twenty-Fourth Street” on the bottom right corner, and “Fridays” on the bottom left corner.

I was able to determine that the address on the card is now St. Francis Residence, a shelter for the homeless mentally ill described as a “reconverted 100-room SRO hotel.” The current structure was built around 1910. It might have been an apartment building or an office building in 1910. In 1905, it is possible that the address belonged to a private residence.

Does the word Fridays indicate that Miss Wallace was prepared to accept visitors on that day? Or does it indicate that Miss Wallace was a professional of some kind whose services were available on Fridays? I have not been able to find any information on the early 20th-century conventions for listing days at home on calling cards, but I am confident that you are well versed in such matters.


What are you smoking, and where can I get some??

Thursday, March 19, 2009

The Face of a Monster (Who Can't Afford the Botox)

Charles Manson
AP Photo/California State Prison, Corcoran

So, this is a photo of "Helter Skelter" killer Charles Manson taken yesterday at California State Prison in Corcoran. Remember how fucking crazy and looney he always looked, with this wild, glazed-over, fanatical eyes?

Doesn't he look less like a "monster" now and more like "some old geezer who's just realized that he forgot to take his Immodium AD?"


Time--such a cruel thief. (The swastika will always be an unpleasant reminder of who he is, but even that's starting to fade...)

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Thank Heavens for THIS Sage...

Because who knows rap better than Gwyneth Paltrow?

(WTF? She doesn't even know how to name her kids--now she's giving career advice?)

Friday, March 13, 2009

Aaron's Unwanted Advice (3/13/09)

DEAR ABBY: A dear cousin let me know that she'll be coming to visit for two weeks. My problem is, she's allergic to everything and has asked me to purchase special foods for her and to board my cats for the duration of her stay.

The food and boarding fees are very expensive, and I don't earn that much. Also, my cats are my children. They won't be happy to be away from me, nor will I be happy to have them away. My cousin asked me to do these things after she informed me that she had already purchased her airline tickets. What should I do?



Your “dear cousin” sounds like a pampered pain in the keister. She’s clearly expecting you to kiss hers, considering that she told you when she was coming, rather than asking if the dates worked for you. She was probably afraid you’d say no, and small wonder.

Tell her you can’t afford to have the cats boarded for two weeks, nor can you afford her fancy-schmantzy panty-waist allergy food. If she has a problem with that, give her a list of cheap hotels nearby or tell her she can reschedule her visit. Most airlines will give a credit for postponed trips.

DEAR ELLIE: I'm 20, living at home again with my parents and younger siblings because they're on welfare and disability and rely on my income and rent. I'm having a hard time accepting this. I can't talk about anything because my dad freaks into a rage. My mom goes along with him.

Several ailments ended his working career; my mom uses her arthritis as an excuse to not work. I dropped out of school and want to go back, but I have a really good-paying job. I'm too stressed now to take on a larger load. I'm ridiculed every day by my dad; he yells at me when I take the car out or when I need to see my horse.
He asks for my money like it's his, but when I'm short he goes into a rage. This has been going on for five years, after I dropped out. I'd had several breakdowns, so I left home, and was happy on my own.

But I get guilt-tripped into staying. They say I'd never make it, I'd have to sell my horse, the family would move into a shack. I do like the security of being here and don't want to give up my horse. How can I leave without causing a rift? And how can I make it on my own?



You’re over the age of 18 now, and that means you’ve reached what we call “the age of majority.” This means you have your own individual legal rights! Ain’t that exciting? One of those rights is to choose where you live—you do not have to put up with a crazy, lazy father or a wet dishrag of a mother who abuse you or passively allow abuse.

Tell them if they don’t want to “move into a shack,” they’d better get their shit together. If you’re so important to the family’s well-being, then it behooves them to treat you better and cut the crap. If they refuse to change, tell them they can pool their disability and welfare checks together to buy Hamburger Helper.

And of course they say you’ll never make it—it’s in their own self-interest to keep you scared. Shake that shit off. You could find a friend who wants to share an apartment and enroll in school part-time. You need to do this for your own future. If you have to sell the horse, so be it—you can find it a good home somewhere. (Your family would probably eat it otherwise—this way, you know it will be cared for.)

And as far as causing a rift, I think that horsie has already jumped the starting gate. You’re conflicted and miserable. You have everything to gain by standing your ground and nothing will improve unless you do. (Be prepared for them to improve temporarily, then backslide—and be prepared to make good on your threat when that happens. You gotta let ‘em know you’re not fucking around.)

DEAR MARGO: I’ve been dating my boyfriend for eight months. Overall, things have been great. There are times we get into arguments and don’t agree, but things generally get resolved quickly. Except for one: About two months ago I answered his phone when his old girlfriend called while he was in the shower. I said he would call back and that was the end of it. My curiosity, though, got the best of me, and I went through his texts after the phone call. What I found was heartbreaking. He was basically having phone sex through text messages with his ex-girlfriend. The messages were very explicit.

I confronted him and told him that in order for us to continue our relationship he would have to stop all contact with this woman. He agreed and I forgave him. Today I found out from friends that he is still talking to her. I confronted him again. He said it was true, and that I had no right to tell him with whom he could and could not speak. He says I am controlling and worry too much that he will cheat on me. I think I have every right to tell him not to speak to this woman after what I saw on his phone. What do you think?



I think you were right to tell him to stop speaking with this woman after you caught him “t-sexing” her (that’s my new name for "text sex"—others may use a different one—like “ewwwww!”), and if he promised to stop doing it, he should have kept his promise.

Since he hasn’t, and now is basically defying you like a surly teenager, I’d advise you to throw him, his cell phone and his jar of Vaseline out to the curb. If you’re feeling particularly generous, you can give him a roll of paper towels as a going-away present.

MORE MARGO (Just because, gosh-darnit, i love that gal!)

DEAR MARGO: For the past four years my daughter, "Miranda," has lived with her boyfriend, "Sam." My husband and I have tried to be supportive of this arrangement, but we disapprove of couples living together before marriage. When they mentioned they were considering marriage, we immediately offered to pay for the ceremony. Now the engagement is official and Miranda has started sending me her ideas for the wedding.

I hate her plans. She wants to get married in Las Vegas, as she and Sam vacation there frequently. Miranda says they have been saving reward points at their favorite casino so they can use the points to help pay for hotel rooms and meals. She also offered to pay for the rehearsal dinner and a day trip to the Grand Canyon so we can get to know our new in-laws. Her plans make some sense, as Sam’s parents and sister live in different states and it’s very easy to find direct flights to Las Vegas from almost anywhere. The ceremony itself would be held at an outdoor location outside the city.

I can tell Miranda is trying to make this as non-Vegas-like as possible, but I still disapprove of her ideas. I want her to get married in our church with all our family present. She only wants to invite parents, siblings and two very close friends to the Vegas ceremony. I think in our haste to see her married my husband and I made an offer we hadn’t thought through. I don’t want to pay for a destination wedding that will exclude most of our friends and family. Is it too late to back out of my offer to pay?



Yes. You bawked and squawked about how you didn’t want your daughter to live in sin, until she probably caved in and said they'd think about marriage just to shut you up. And as soon as they announced they were considering marriage--without confirming a date or anything--you jumped in and offered to pay. That doesn’t scream “desperate” or anything. Oh, no.

Well, now it’s gonna cost you--tough shit, Mrs. Cleaver. Your chickens have come home to roost-just pray they don’t cost you $50 a plate.

Regardless of whether you offered to pay or not, it’s their wedding, and it will be on their terms. Press the issue, and they might just go back to sharing digs without rings. And what will your neighbors say then? (Because that’s what this is really all about, isn’t it: holding your head high and not hearing whispers while you’re cruising the aisles of the A&P?)

You brought this on yourself. Suck it up. And look at it this way: at least they’re offering to pay for some of the rooms and the rehearsal dinner. If I were in their shoes, I’d stick you with the whole damned thing just to teach you a lesson—and then hop a quick plane to Reno and get divorced the next day.

DEAR MISS MANNERS: I am a 25-year-old living with my (usually wonderful) boyfriend of five years. He recently lost his job, and in the few days since hearing the news, he has been a little more needy. When I am home from my job, he is usually following me around the house and asking for my company, which he says comforts him.

I wish to politely remind him that while I am full of empathy for his grief and depression over losing a job (and thus losing a sense of meaning and a feeling of providing for me), I am not exactly a security blanket who is there to calm him at every moment. That I am, in fact, a partner who is dealing with issues of my own at work and does not need the added frustration of feeling that I am in charge of his every emotional need. That I am a girlfriend, not a mother.

How can I politely inform him of my feelings without seeming uncaring?


You don’t want to seem uncaring? Wow, that’s a relief! Also a surprise, given the language in the rest of your letter. You must be one of those tough Independent 20-Something Girls who Refuse to be Leaned on or Taken for a Ride. You want all the freedom of not being married, plus the cache that being “in a relationship” brings, without the messiness of dealing with your partner's crises.

You'll grow up eventually, but in the meantime, here’s a news flash for you: a partnership means that you share things, good as well as—take out your steno pad, Lois Lane—bad. That means that you might have to be a little extra sensitive to him for a while. Oh shudder, shudder.

The guy lost his job less than a week ago. Give him a break, and be grateful he even wants to spend time with you at all. Statistics show that most men become less interested in their relationships when they lose their jobs. You should thank your lucky stars your boyfriend hasn’t turned off completely. (Considering your personality, I can’t imagine why he hasn’t. In fact, once he finds a new job, don’t be surprised to find all of his stuff moved out one day when you come home from your high-powered Melanie-Griffith-Working-Girl gig.)

DEAR AMY: I read with interest and amazement the letter in your column from someone whose friend was hosting a "bidet party."

I added a bathroom to my house several years ago. I had a champagne and canapes party in this bathroom!

Afterward, we had dinner in the dining room. I do not find the bidet party "tasteless," but rather an event that the attendees will remember as something unusual and fun!



Well, it certainly is unusual. And as long as you didn’t insist that your guests each—erm—“christen” the new bathroom in turn, it’s your house and your life and you can do what you want in it.

(But please tell me the dining room, where you ate afterwards, is at least more than one room away.)

Thursday, March 12, 2009

And You Can Color Us All Stunned

On a positive note, it looks like stupidity skips a generation.

Whatchutalkin 'Bout...?

So, Sears Tower is to be renamed. I'm sorry, but I will never call it by this name.

(They really should have held out for "Mrs. Garrett Tower." Or even that poor, dead Kimberly.)

Friday, March 06, 2009

You Asked For It: Unwanted Advice (3/6/09)

DEAR AMY: My husband and I donate a lot of things to homes for senior citizens.

We had an 80-pound television that we were not going to use anymore. I called a girlfriend and asked if her mother could use it in the senior home. She said her mom didn't need one, but if I was giving it away, I could give it to her 32-year-old daughter.

I was not pleased with this idea because I did not offer it to her daughter, but I asked my husband and he said it was fine. He then said I should ask her to have her 27-year-old son help carry this TV.

I repeatedly reminded my friend to make sure her son would help my husband (he is 67) move the TV. When they came to pick up the TV, it was just my friend and her daughter––no son. I was furious.

My friend then attempted to help my husband carry the TV down the front concrete stairs, and my husband tripped. I ran down the stairs, helped them lift it up and put it in her truck. I yelled at her, "It would have been nice if your son was here to help!" and stormed into my house.

I sent her an e-mail explaining why I was so angry, but she answered me that she was capable of handling the TV herself. There was absolutely no mention of her son and no apology. Her daughter (who did not lift a finger), got a free television out of the deal and I lost a friendship.

I am still furious. I feel my husband and I were taken advantage of. Some people think I should be more forgiving, but I don't agree.



Of course you don’t agree. You’re a bitch. No wonder you’re so “FRUSTRATED(!)”

The daughter got a “free television out of the deal.” Whoop-de-doo. A “free” television that you didn’t want anymore and probably wasn’t working that well anyway (otherwise, why were you not using it anymore?).

If you didn’t want to give this TV away to your friend’s daughter, you had the option of politely declining. But you didn’t do that, because you felt put on the spot by your friend’s request. It was, perhaps, a little manipulative of her to presume on your friendship like that, but it was childish of you to storm into the house the way you did (leaving your husband with egg all over his face and making apologies for you, by the way—did you ever think of that? Of course not—because you’re a bitch).

You never stopped to ask why her son wasn’t there to help, and rather than e-mailing her to apologize, you e-mailed to “explain why you were angry.” Pick up the Clue Phone on Line 1: that’s not an apology, it’s a self-justification, and it’s even more insulting to the people you’ve dumped on (not to mention a waste of their time and energy to read and respond to—they already know you’re mad, and a repetitive rant adds insult to injury).

After such a shitstorm, your friend owes you no apology. You treated her like a burden, and if that’s the case, why are you complaining about losing her friendship? It’s clear that you don’t know how to have friends, so it’s probably best that you’re left untroubled by outside company.

Call it a wash and walk away.

DEAR ABBY: My husband, "Warren," and I are happily married. We love each other. We are both hardworking career professionals and have raised our family. We have always been faithful to each other.

Warren is very open with his emotions and often tells me how much he loves me. He is also very passionate during our intimate moments. The problem is, he expects me to act the same way -- which I can't. Although I love my husband and always will, I do not feel comfortable expressing myself the way he does during our lovemaking. I am content to just "get it over with" while he yearns for the kissing, hugging and talk.

Despite an active sex life with Warren, he has told me many times he wishes I were more expressive and open with my feelings. I respond by telling him, "I am who I am." He is not happy that I refuse to change.

Warren is a wonderful man. Other women probably would have no problem giving him what he wants, but we are not compatible this way. I have never spoken to anyone else about this, and I'm wondering what you think.



I think I'm glad I'm not “happily married” to you. And I think if Warren is such a “wonderful man,” he deserves a wife who doesn’t treat him like a predator when he wants to do The Thing that Married People Do. Right now, he sounds like a live-in handyman who gets paid with grudge sex: “Oh, my husband is just a wonderful man who takes out the garbage, fixes the garage door and mows the lawn, and in return I lie on my back, tolerate his sexual fumbling and stare at the ceiling, deciding what color it should be painted. That will show up on his honey-do list tomorrow.”

Maybe it’s less cold-blooded than that; maybe there’s an underlying emotional or mental issue inhibiting your “connubial enjoyment.” But if you do have some sort of emotional block or anxiety, you owe it to yourself and Warren to see a counselor and find out what’s going on.

(And if I were you, I wouldn’t tell him the part about “other women having no problem giving him what he wants.” You might just find that they are—sooner than you think.)

DEAR ELLIE: I'm in love with my boyfriend of seven months; we were friends beforehand. I was living with my ex-boyfriend for two years. We'd lost love and respect for one another. My ex smoked marijuana daily, which created a big financial strain. Yet I still miss him and wonder whether we really tried to make things work. Then I remember how relieved I felt after the split.

My current boyfriend and I have plans for a future together. However, I'm confused about my ex and don't know if I should try and rekindle what we might still have.



I wouldn’t try to rekindle it—I’m sure the bud’s cashed by now, and you’ll only be left with some resin. I understand it takes a while for it to leave the system completely. Drink some red clover and yellow burdock tea and lots of water, and you should be over him soon after that. (I’ve heard.)

MORE ELLIE (Because you were just dying for more, weren’t you??):

DEAR ELLIE: I'm 27, a single working mom with one child, who handles guys based on my past experiences. I use them -- mentally, emotionally, personally and sexually. My current four-month relationship has had terrible problems: abortion, STDs, he's untrustworthy, and we're both rebounding. However, he's still with his partner.

I know he's not right for me and that I'm much smarter than I've been acting with him. I haven't slept with anybody else, but I flirt often. I accept that he doesn't provide for me because he also has kids.

My previous two-year live-in relationship was more about friendship and financial stability. He was 36 years older, knew that I had mood swings and expensive taste. So he took care of my daughter and me, until he abruptly left. Our "deal" was that I take care of him health-wise after his hospitalization, but I went out instead, and we talked only occasionally.

Why am I now with half a man? And letting the Old Man still help with my car loan?



You think you’re smarter than you’ve been acting? I hope so, because you act dumb as a goalpost. (And that’s your good point.)

I especially love the passive voice you use to describe the “terrible problems” in your (relatively brief) relationship: as if the STD and abortion “just happened” while you stood by, a helpless spectator, wringing her hands. Nice try, hon. It took conscious action to get to the point where you are. Even your own description of your previous relationship paints you as callous and unreliable: you “went out” instead of caring for the man who had just come out of the hospital, as you’d agreed to. Hope you saw some interesting restrooms on your clubbing adventures.

Drop the act: you’re not some sort of passive victim—you basically said yourself that you use men “mentally, personally, emotionally and sexually.” You very slyly left out “financially,” but if someone’s paying your loans, that’s clearly implied.

I think you know what that makes you, however much you try to rationalize. In case you don’t, let me suggest that you consider moving to Babylon—and I don’t mean the one in Long Island. The reason that you can’t find any satisfaction with men is because you’re not willing to build a relationship that lasts longer than it takes for you to scam beer money out of them. I think your signature could be applied better to the men you suck dry like prunes date.

I feel sorry for your kid.

DEAR MISS MANNERS: We have a niece that addresses all mail Mr. and Mrs. Smith. She never includes the first name of anyone. We feel this is disrespectful.


I’m not sure it’s disrespectful, but it would get confusing after a while. Imagine only having friends named Smith! Don’t worry—she’ll have to include first names eventually, just to keep them straight.

Thursday, March 05, 2009

Too Bad the Victim Wasn't a "Harry Potter" Actor--THAT Murderer Got Life

This is insane. I'm sorry, but even if the guy's schizophrenic, that "self-defense" garbage doesn't wash. "Self-defense" does not require stabbing somebody DOZENS of times, then CARVING and EATING him.

There are two obvious reasons Li got off so lightly: A.) because he was an immigrant and the judge faced a backlash if he got a harsher sentence (sorry, but this is the conservative part of me speaking. It doesn't come out often, but it will rear its head when judges intentionally give light sentences to murderers after a straw man trial); and B.) because McLean was a carney. Yeah. Let's face it--it was. He was JUST a carney, after all...

I don't believe Li should have been unfairly punished. But, My God, what seems unfair after something like this?? And what are they thinking with that "re-evaluated yearly to see if he's fit for release back into society" crap? Let me answer that RIGHT NOW:

Um, no.

Bar Goes Under the Knife

And not to remove her foot from her mouth, as I had previously thought.

Well. I liked her once (circa 1989), so I will wish her a speedy recovery. And a quiet one.

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Maybe I Could Rig Up a PA System Into the Alley

Now this is the way to handle unruly kids. A much more effective punishment than grounding, wouldn't you say?

Monday, March 02, 2009

A Blown-Out Speaker

I always thought this bitch was useless. Now, it turns out she's kinda crazy, too.

(She's right about Rush Limbaugh, though.)