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.)


Anonymous Anonymous said...

In the Dear Ellie letter the poor guy does everything but jump through hoops to make her happy. What does the Princess expect from him? Even though it would be beneath her to marry a commoner she does seem to love him if only he could at least act like a blue blood. My advice to him...Run, man, Run!
The Dear Miss Manners letter about chain letters was hilarious. What about the ones that say my Penis will fall off if I don't send 50 copies out by midnight? These things aren't real, are they? I erase them all! Hey! what is that roaring noise like a frieght train and why is it dark as night outside? Oh oh.
The Dear Abby letter was a bit amusing as well. Let me see she has bad leg and so must stick it out in the aisle so people can trip over it, nice.
The person in the Dear Amy letter wanted to know what to say when a relative says if you invite so-and-so I'm not coming. I'd look her straight in the eye and say, "Why do you think I invited them?"
The Dear Margo lady is a glutton for punishment. She has very low self esteem. She needs professional help. She needs to buy a gun and plead insanity when she shoots this fucker in the head.
Things I learned from your sage advice: A girl turns into a Pumpkin at 28. There is a spiky chair in Hell for my enemies. (goody) My new favortie word: Weenuses, Thanks-- ed

12:24 PM  
Blogger Aaron said...

Thanks, Ed! I can't take credit for the "Weenus" moniker--I saw it on "South Park" 10 yrs ago. But it stuck in my head (like all the pigeon crap, I suppose), and suggested itself as a great label for the (willfully) hapless and clueless.

11:50 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

We used to receive TONS of forwarded e-mails. Usually they come from the same 3 or 4 people, but they sent tons. We called them the "I love Jesus, pass it on" mail. We simply responded to the sender with each one we received and asked to be removed from their forward list and that we simply just were not interested in receiving forwards. Now we receive ZERO forwards from them and checking e-mail is a lot less annoying!

10:55 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home