Tuesday, June 27, 2006
It's like that with the eyerolling inlaws. Don't resist, go with.
YOU: Pass the broccoli
In Laws: You really need to be careful of anemia,
YOU: I know, I know, you're so right.
The key to this is to say it while you are shoveling in the broccoli. Under no circumstances use sarcasm. Drip with sincerity. After a few times, they'll stop mentioning it. Trust me.
Monday, June 26, 2006
Sunday, June 25, 2006
Dear Milk, There is only one response that I recommend in this case, no matter if the baby looks like the twin of the father, the mother the next door neighbor, even the family dog. You say, and in this case sincerity isn't even required, because the person who is asking already knows what they think, and just wants you to confirm or to pick a fight (it's what's known as a trick question) Oh, The baby is a perfect mix of -----here insert the name of the parents--------. Trust me this will be the end of the conversation, and you can move on to something less dangerous, like politics or religion. God bless, Donna
Saturday, June 24, 2006
Dear Veg, You are subject to conflicting rules. You can't get in between someone and his mother, and you can't pretend things are nice when they are not. The first course of action is to talk to your spouse about how you feel, but the way you put it is crucial. You can't say I think your family is crazy, why do I have to put up with them? Because he is putting up with your family, trust me, I don't even have to know the details, that's how it is. If that doesn't bring you satisfaction, and you still are having agita, you can use the Japanese Thumbtrap approach, which I will explain in greater detail, tomorrow. God Bless, Donna
Monday, June 19, 2006
Let me tell you, it was not worth your life to turn your back on either your food, your clothes, or your pride. Anything and all would be snatched before you could say hey, that was MY ... fill in the blank, pillow, dessert, friend, air.. it was one big scramble. Now here's the part where you expect me to say, it was tough but we had love and laughter. Well forget that. We didn't have all that much love, and the laughs were usually at someone's expense. But hey, I'm not complaining. I'm not in jail or in the looney bin, and I managed to stay alive without killing anyone. Not bad.
Sunday, June 18, 2006
Thursday, June 01, 2006
HER: Gotcha, didn't I. ME: uh uh. What should I have said? We were at our exercise place, just finished 30 minutes,and she looked fine, not stunning. But I meant it as a compliment not an insult which is how she took it. Unintentional Insulter, Half Moon Bay
Dear Un, This is her problem not yours. Let it go. God bless, Donna
Wednesday, May 31, 2006
Dear Wonder, Family is everything. And everything is family. Now, remember, what's family to you isn't family to someone else. For example, my cousin Alberto never married, and his mother and father died young, may they rest, but he belonged to the local garden club, and was well known for his prize hybrid teas. He had a garden as big as a football field, filled with every kind of rose you ever heard of and some you never did. He watched over those plants like they were children, which they were to him and his garden club buddies were their aunts and uncles. He was never lonely, in fact he did much better than my neighbor Frankie, who had seven brothers who teased him and a wife it was clear he couldn't stand, and ingrate children who took him for all he was worth and let the state pay his nursing home bills when he fell and broke his hip. Sad, but true. Just goes to show. God bless, Donna
Tuesday, May 30, 2006
YOU: Pass the meatballs
VEGGIES: You really should be careful of that red meat, mad cow, all that.
YOU: I know, I know, you're so right.
The key to this is to say it while you are shoveling inthe meatballs. Under no circumstances use sarcasm. After a few times, they'll stop mentioning it. Trust me.
Monday, May 29, 2006
Dear Carn, You are subject to conflicting rules. You can't get in between someone and his mother, and you can't pretend things are nice when they are not. The first course of action is to talk to your spouse about how you feel, but the way you put it is crucial. You can't say I think your family is crazy, why do I have to put up with them? Because he is putting up with your family, trust me, I don't even have to know the details, that's how it is. If that doesn't bring you satisfaction, and you still are having agita, you can use the Japanese Thumbtrap approach, which I will explain in greater detail, tomorrow. God Bless, Donna
Saturday, May 27, 2006
Dear Behind,, Remember what I told you? It's never just about the money. Don't shake your head at me...you have some need to be in the hole. I have no idea what that is, either, since you don't say. Trust me on this one. Like my sister's mother in law's sister, who NEVER learned to drive, you'd feel sorry for her, but she got everyone and their uncle to take her to the Walgreens and the senior citizens. IT may be like that for you with money. Or not. God bless, Donna
Friday, May 26, 2006
Dear See Saw, In answer to the question you asked, Yes. In answer to the unspoken question, which is why can't I find someone like me?? I don't think you'd want to.
Thursday, May 25, 2006
And what can I say, some of it I was just born with. Lucky me.
Wednesday, May 24, 2006
Dear Con, Then don't. God bless, Donna
PS. If you are asking if you can stiff your friend without causing her aggravation, the answer is no.
Tuesday, May 23, 2006
Dear Madrone, what is attitude? How do I get some? Doormat, Lesterville
To ALL the Doormats: Attitude is related to savvy, but not the same thing. A person with attitude but no savvy often ends up in the emergency room of life, with things broken, hearts, noses, promises. A person with savvy, but no attitude might end up a professor or something, an egghead who knows what's going on, but can't do anything about it. Attitude comes in degrees, and you don 't have to say a word...it's how you look out of your eyes. BACK OFF! or DON'T START WITH ME! or I KNOW WHAT"S WHAT. In other words, MESS AT YOUR OWN RISK.
Now, how do you get that? Some people are born with it, Even in the playpen the other babies steer clear, give over their pacifiers. But you can learn it by getting fed up with being a doormat, and saying ENOUGH. I don't give a rat's A** if you're upset. Here's how it's going to be. No one can talk anyone into having attitude. It's something you have to come into all on your own. Good luck. God bless, Donna
PS...A little attitude can go a long way.
Sunday, May 21, 2006
Dear Eager,, You're waiting for the light to go on, but you don't want to pull the switch. Couple of things here. He may not like YOU, and is too polite to encourage. OR, as you suspect, he is down on himself because of a couple of bad outings. Cut this out and leave it where he will find it:
HEY YOU! Get over yourself, and take a look around. Luck can change. The person who cut this out and left it around thinks you should take a shot.
God Bless, Donna
Dear Malish, With that attitude, there is nothing you can do. Avoid or suffer. That's it. God bless, Donna
Friday, May 19, 2006
Dear Itching, The diet you describe is criminal, I agree. By all means hotline. I'm sure the smile is a cover up to hide the pain. OR worse, he may have no idea what eating is about, and so does not know any better than to be happy and thrive. BUT BE WARNED as a** backward as his parents may be in this matter, it's still between him and his mother. You may certainly interfere, but expect major paybacks heading your way. You will be reviled by the neighbors for sticking your nose into their business, because they WILL find out it's you, trust me, and your spouse will be disgusted and you, mark my words, will be the bad guy.
Just be sure your righteous feeling is worth all the grief you are going to get for being such a busybody. God bless, Donna
Thursday, May 18, 2006
Dear Madrone, Last week I met my cousin in the city for lunch, and since I paid the last three times, it was her turn to pick up the tab. And she didn't. I ended up paying again. It's not like she doesn't have the money, she is paid very nicely at her company, this we all know, as she's mentioned it more than once. I can afford it, and up until this last time I had the gracious heart. No more. I am beginning to feel like a doormat. Should I insist she pay next time, or let it go?
Dear Hart, Just how much is this cousin's company worth to you? For example, is she nose snorting funny? You have three choices. Insist she pay, keep paying, or avoid - make excuses- no need to lie, adjust your life. Any of these will work, but don't expect your cousin to either change or thank you for your honesty. Cheapskates don't think of themselves that way. God bless, Donna
Wednesday, May 17, 2006
Dear Fed, Trying what? Pretending you like people so he can learn to have pretend friends, too? Leave him alone. There's no need for everybody to be a social butterfly. Unless of course, you suspect that instead of a placid pool, you are raising a time bomb with a very silent tick, what's the big deal?? There are worse things a 14 year old boy could be doing besides reading, unless of course he's reading about those things, which still isn't that much to write home about. God bless, Donna
Tuesday, May 16, 2006
Dear Concerned, IF the child in question is under eighteen, berating, incarceration, deprivation and certain varieties of punishment are all worthy tools, as are heart to hearts, see how much we love yous and reverse psychologies. However the mistake is thinking that these are going to be effective in the short term. They are not.These are long term strategies. The truly wild child, if they survive, grows up and nine times out of ten, turns into a stricter parent than their parents ever dreamed of being. If you are talking about an over eighteen year old, there is nothing to be done. However,it is best to keep in mind that no rule of any sort requires that you fund activities that disturb you. God bless, Donna
Sunday, May 14, 2006
Dear Mal, , All you need is a heart of reinforced steel. Once you go down this road,the one who prevails is the one who shows no mercy. You must be willing to pursue your vengeance with a single minded determination, the kind that chews up asphalt, mows down any obstacle and pays no attention to weeping children or limping dogs along the way. IF you can summon up a no regrets resolve, then pretty much it doesn't matter what you do, you can ask your betrayer to pass the salt, and she will feel dread. She will know that you are willing to lie, steal, damage, poison anything of value to her and will be unable to have a completely peaceful moment until she breathes her last or makes amends, sobbing at your feet.
And yet this power is like acid, burns the container too. My uncle's best man Rolly was betrayed when his brother Lou told their mother that Rolly had, against her wishes, dated a person who was, shall we say, different. The mother cut Rolly dead. Rolly made it his business to make Lou's life after that a living hell. The two of them went to early graves, they died of heart attacks a week apart. The mother buried them both, and ended up living in an old age home that smelled of wet cats with no one to visit her. It wasn't pretty. God bless, Donna
Saturday, May 13, 2006
Dear Anxious, Family health is not easy to determine because a family is composed of individuals, who for some reason known only to heaven, are not identical. The same family that is healthy for one is poison to another. The only answer I can give to your first question is the same one the dentist gave me, when I asked him if he thought my wisdom teeth might be impacted. He said, when they are you won't have to ask. As for the tattoed biker chick, who knows? People run off for all sorts of reasons, some of them good, some of them bad. God bless, Donna
Friday, May 12, 2006
Dear Mal, You have two choices. Forget it, and move on. I don't mean you ever have to talk to your betrayer, or even wish her well, I mean don't obsess. Or you can take her out. There is no in between. Consider very carefully before you take her out. How far are you willing to go? Jail time? Large amounts of payments that you may lose in a civil suit, the pity of your friends if it doesn't go well?
Even if it does go well, there can be blow back.Sympathy goes to the latest victim, and you might even discover you have a conscience which gives you remorse, although that's a waste, you still can be hamstrung by it. The other way is healthier all around. Think about it and let me know which way you want to handle this and we'll take it from there. God bless, Donna
Thursday, May 11, 2006
Dear Suspicious, Do they act like she is? Then she is, end of story. God bless, Donna
Wednesday, May 10, 2006
Dear Turvey, Unless I am missing something, you haven't gone wrong. Unless you are hiding something, I don't know what your problem is. Are your children healthy? Do they support themselves? Are they jerks? If you can answer yes, yes, no, than you have done about a good a job as any mother living or dead. Get a grip. God bless, Donna
Tuesday, May 09, 2006
Dear Madrone, My youngest brother is like a king in our home. He doesn't lift a finger and expects the world to be brought to him on a carpet. The rest of us slave like dogs, bring our mother to the doctors, run ourselves ragged, only to listen to what a pearl the no good is. When we speak up, our mother says we're jealous, he deserves the best. But he wouldn't walk across the street to pick her up even if she were lying in the gutter. Worse, she gives him everything we give her. Everything. Which he gladly takes like he's doing her a favor. How long can this go on? Despairing, Lost River
Dear Lost, It will go on as long as your mother wants it to go on. What did I tell you? There is nothing you can do. Oh you probably want some magic formula, but there is none. Your mother is a doormat for her youngest son, who has no shame about walking on her. Good or bad she has her reasons. Short of declaring her legally incompetent, you have nothing to say about who she gives what, and that's that.
Interfere at your own peril. God bless, Donna
Monday, May 08, 2006
Nine times out of ten,
the disaster that you think of ISN'T the disaster that happens.
the thing you worry that you forgot to do, you did, but you don't even think about the thing you actually forgot.
the person you bent over backwards for holds it against you
the money you spent trying to make someone love you makes them resent you
the bad thing that happens has unexpected good results
the good thing that you got also came with side effects you didn't count on and don't want
Sunday, May 07, 2006
Friday, May 05, 2006
1.You don't get money back when you lend it to family.
2. The person you don't want to hear what you said behind their back hears it
3. The day you call in sick to go to the sales at National Liquidators even though you NEVER do it and probably won't again, is the day that the big boss comes around to inspect.
4. Your children will grow up and do all the things they swore they'd never do when they had children of their own.
There is more. This is just some of what you can count on.
Thursday, May 04, 2006
Now you may ask me, Madrone, what if I am related to one, or married to one, or someone I am married to is related to one or someone I am related to is married to one? What do you suggest I do then? Well, one part is easy, nobody broke your arm to marry did they? If you'd listened to me in the first place and avoided the crepe hanger, you wouldn't be filing the joint tax return now. But if you're related to one, there are two options..Avoid, and take the heat from the others who do not understand, or Put up with, and be aggravated. When the aggravation you feel outweighs the heat you will get from other family, then you will act. Now there are ways of avoiding, some better than others, to be discussed later. God bless, Donna
PS- A crepe hanger is the kind of person who, even if you meet them on a sunny day with a $1000 from the lucky four scratch off instant lotto in your pocket, you end up going home thinking about skin cancer and the bite the government is going to take out of your winnings.
Wednesday, May 03, 2006
Dear Los, I, however, do not pity you back. I will, after answering this letter, ignore you, and that's about that. What good does your pity do for me? Nothing. It only serves to make you feel good about yourself, but for nothing, which is why you are wasting your time. IF I put any stock in pity I would be sorry for you using up your precious minutes on this instead of knitting mittens or buying a lottery ticket. Something useful. God bless, Donna
Tuesday, May 02, 2006
Small c, you are free to insult or ignore- the only heat you'll get is from them, and that is only if they actually register your existence. People like that usually don't know other people breathe. Everyone else will understand.
Capital C means you have to see them every week at the barbecue, the only way you can avoid them is not going, but that's cutting off your nose to spite your face. Short of open warfare, which is sometimes called for, but not for this penny ante stuff, you can take measures. Under no circumstances try to do them one better, you can't. Instead confine yourself to this one comment, every time. : You are the luckiest, smartest, bravest, thriftiest- pick whatever adjective applies to the circumstance- people I have ever heard of. Madonna, I hope you are wearing a little red ribbon. Trust me, after a while they will stop. But you have to say it like you mean it. This will make them nervous.
ALL CAPITALS- You are stuck with these people, no matter what. The only way you can break from them is amputation. If they're gangrene, by any means, you cut them out of your life. Just be sure it's an arm or a leg your cutting out, not a heart or a liver. God bless, Donna
Monday, May 01, 2006
Dear Madrone, my cousins are always shooting off their mouths about this car they bought and that vacation they took, and how much their children give them and how great a deal they got on this or that high priced item. I have not the faintest idea how they afford all that, the husband works in a shirt factory, or so he says, but I don't see no shirts. Well he could work in a hundred shirt factories, if I have to listen to one more story, I will have to do damage...how can I get them to shut up? Frantic, Altamount
Sunday, April 30, 2006
Saturday, April 29, 2006
AND wrong. Because according to the rules of family, unless of course, she was stealing from yours, let's assume not, since nothing was said in the letter, you can go either way on this, it doesn't make any real difference to anyone but you. So you could just decide to MYOB, who asked you, you don't know the whole story, why get involved, let it be. Or you can confront directly and say, I know what you're up to quit it or I'm turning you in I don't recommend this, too complicated, and really namby pamby. Besides you can't talk people into being honest. Or if you bring in the heat, you can either play dumb when people wonder who called the gendarmes or say directly I called the cops, she's a disgrace bringing up my taxes. All of these options are equally fine: do whatever lets you sleep at night.
Friday, April 28, 2006
Dear Madrone, I am in a pickle.My girlfriend's best friend's cousin has sticky fingers. I mean we can't go to the store, to a restaurant that something doesn't walk out with her that didn't walk in. Now I'm not a saint, and I have been known to stash the odd packet of Equal from the diner and who doesn't take conditioner and shampoo from the motel, even if you didn't open it, everyone knows they throw those out if you don't.But this one's a real prize, I've seen her lift an entire wardrobe, include matching underwear and co-ordinating press ons. No one says boo to her, her father is on the job. But this can't be right. Should I rat her out? Honestly concerned, Philly.
Thursday, April 27, 2006
PS- Medusa is just PO-ed, and she has a right to be. Look it up.
Wednesday, April 26, 2006
One marrige was recently profiled on the front page of the Daily News and the other has given plenty of work to the reporters on Court TV. I am so sorry for what I did. Is there any way I can make up for it? Regretful, Regency Park
Dear Ful, Forgeddaboudit. Nothing you can do. What did I tell you about regret, waste of time. Let me ask you, did you learn anything? Well you should have, even if it was just that lying is hardly ever the way to go, although sometimes it is. Not in this case. God bless, Donna
PS-Liars annoy me, but sometimes agita is just the price you have to pay.
Tuesday, April 25, 2006
Dear Blushing First off, you sound like someone whose son, or husband, why not, is enjoying the sights a little too much. Be that as it may, you suggest to the mother she cover up by going over and saying I think your daughter should cover up. What you really want to know is if there is any way to make this suggestion without making war with the family next door, well you can't. Because no matter if the mother says I know I know, you'll be breaking rule #1 by suggesting to a mother she doesn't know how to raise her own child. So decide which is more aggravating. The free show or bad blood with your neighbors. God bless, Donna
Monday, April 24, 2006
Dear Bamboozled, Idaho huh? Well first you do not say whether you have had any first hand aquaintaince with the topic, that's one answer. IF you HAVE any actual experience, and just didn't find it all that appealing, that's another. I will answer in general, since you do not indicate why you ask. As far as families are concerned, in the old days, sex was the only way you could make new people for the new families. So THAT was the big deal. These days, if people aren't growing on trees, they will be soon, so sex gets to be more of a hobby, like knitting or model railroads, and you know how crazy people can get about their model railroads. God bless, Donna
Sunday, April 23, 2006
Thursday, April 20, 2006
Wednesday, April 19, 2006
Dear Fist, My advice is to unclench that fist, and go get yourself a cup of coffee and a nice anisette to dunk and let it go. The answer to the question you asked is no. The answer to the question you didn't ask is that nobody deserves anything, not the good stuff that happens to them, not the bad. It's just what happens. If you think that it actually MEANS something, that you can act a certain way to get a certain thing, good luck with that. God bless, Donna
Tuesday, April 18, 2006
Dear Enough, Tough one. It doesn't sound so good from here. I mean, you are already writing for advice, and he hasn't yet coughed up the ring. Unless you think he is sincerely ready to make a break with the old ways and form a new, more content family with you. In which case, it might be worth a shot. In that case, ask yourself , can you refrain from whining to him about his family? Because can either join in, or resent. Either way you're in a fix. And remember, you will never be free of his family, even if you live a thousand miles away. God bless, Donna
Monday, April 17, 2006
Dear Curious, It's whatever bothers you. Some people don't like being put in handcuffs and hauled away to do time. Other people can't stand it if their next door neighbor, who just moved in and they don't know them from Adam, gives them a look because of the dandelions on the front lawn going to seed. No matter what sets it off, it's ALWAYS better to face it up front, or it comes around later to bite you. God bless, Donna
Sunday, April 16, 2006
Saturday, April 15, 2006
Religion is all about the next world, families are all about this one. Period. If you don't believe me, just check whatever holy book floats your boat. Just take one for example, somewhere in the Bible, I recall a bunch of men being told to stop fishing for fish, Ok then, just who do you think was back home waiting for some frigging fish to cook for dinner? and who had to tell hungry little kids that daddy wasn't coming back with any mackerel, or whatever, he was off "fishing for men", which is kind of a code for hanging out with the boys forever. And all this worshipping of virgins...if that isn't detrimental to families, I don't know what is.
I'm not saying you shouldn't have religions, in fact, if you don't have them, you cut out most of your bigger family holidays, but don't get confused by them.
Friday, April 14, 2006
I try my best to hide my dismay, but it's hard to hold my tongue when I see salad being served at the beginning of the dinner, and no pie with the coffee. And don't get me started on the way she lets my granddaughter's hair hang in front of her eyes. How can I prevent myself from saying something harsh? Biting Tongue, Los Alamos
Dear Biting, Oh you can prevent yourself from saying something harsh by keeping your mouth shut, it's that simple. What you need to ask is how you can keep yourself from thinking these things. Because your daughter can read your mind, just the way you can read hers. God bless, Donna
A note to the rest of you: You know how sometimes you think you're getting along Ok, even if some things aren't quite right, and then all of a sudden someone treats you like you don't exist and you're completely stunned, what did you do that was so terrible. The above letter is what you did.
Thursday, April 13, 2006
Dear Allergic, Pets are family the same way babies are, except that babies grow up, as they should. People who treat pets like family are looking to stop time, which they can't but with their pets they can pretend. IF a person regards a pet as family, and some do (remember, you can't tell anyone who is or isn't their family) then the rules apply. The thing about pets is that they can't give you gas about the way you treat them unless of course you treat them so bad they eventually run away or turn on you. In this way they are also similar to human family. God bless,Donna
PS. If you are the kind of bonehead who continues to treat a family member like pet, long after babyhood is over, you are in for it.
PPS.About the allergy. If you are really allergic and the person in question still keeps the pet around, it's a message. Get it.
Wednesday, April 12, 2006
Dear Got CHA, Do you know the frigging difference between theory and practice?? For example, in theory, I could be a power forward for the NBA,in practice I can't. Right?? Right. SO it's like this. In theory, a family can start with any of the above mentioned combos..but ALL parties must be content, otherwise power is being used wrongly. And to be content, each party must feel like they are number one. Now in the case of the twosomes, it's simple, each is number one to the other. When you get to three or more, that's where the trouble starts. EVERYONE wants to be number one, and everyone can't be, so someone is either unhappy or lied to. In which case, there is no real family. That's how that goes. God bless, Donna
Tuesday, April 11, 2006
Dear Insane, What have I told you one million thousand times? You can't tell anyone who is or isn't their family. My Aunt Lucia stayed her whole life alone and left all her money to her cat. Nobody was going to talk her out of that one, she said, the cat cleaned itself, and never said a harsh word, better than any man. And yes, I know what you're talking about, you think if you scream at your daughter, it will turn her back to something you can understand, or approve of, but it won't. She can't change your mind, and you won't change hers. Stubborn probably runs in the family. So you either let it go or continue screaming. Up to you. God bless, Donna
Saturday, April 08, 2006
My advice is now that you know, go buy yourself a nice dress, why not? OR have lunch with someone who doesn't give you agita. Life is too short for most of the stuff people waste their time on.
Dear Puzzled Sometimes it astounds me the things people have to ask, because you know what they say about there being no stupid question...well, don't make me laugh. This question is exhibit one. Anyhow, everybody knows this difference, what everybody doesn't want to do is admit it, because they want to be 'nice'. I'm not against nice, but not if it's fake. But let's assume you really have no clue...
WHO HAS WHAT YOU WANT- Is someone who can hurt your family if you don't bow to them.
WHO WANTS WHAT YOU HAVE- Is someone whose family you can hurt if you feel so inclined.
Friday, April 07, 2006
These rules however,at times are better off broken. But only for good reasons. Believe me I don't know what those reasons are offhand...it always depends. If it didn't you wouldn't need me to help you out. But you do.
Thursday, April 06, 2006
Back before there were rules, the person who everyone bowed to was the one who could break the most heads. Back then, muscle actually meant muscle. And that was the only rule. You don't like what I tell you, then kaboom, you had a tiger jaw bone brought down on your head. End of story. This went on for a while, until people got tired of being knocked around and figured out that numbers counted. And that you could persuade people with actual muscle that things wouldn't go so well for them if they continued to throw it around.
Tuesday, April 04, 2006
Monday, April 03, 2006
A doormat is walked on, left in the rain, and smeared with mud and snow, and hardly ever washed. SO if you have been doing someone a favor,and they never pay back in any way shape or form, OR if you lend $1000 even after the last $1000 hasn't been returned, or you say yes, because you want to keep peace, even when you really mean let me first punch you in the nose before I say NO. OR if you don't have a gracious heart, and you resent whatever it is you're doing, maybe bringing the laundry up from the basement, or letting someone borrow your car for the fourteenth time but they don't replace the gas they use, or you smile when you'd rather frown. Once doesn't make you a doormat, but twice can, and after three times you might want to check to see what that is stamped across your face that makes people want to wipe their shoes on you. God bless, Donna
Sunday, April 02, 2006
Wednesday, March 29, 2006
Monday, March 27, 2006
Sunday, March 26, 2006
Dear Wart, You at least know you have a problem which I am going to solve for you. All things should be this simple. Eddy knows every single thing that bothers you. Trust me. This is your nag list. Next time, before you get into it, just say, Hey Eddie, you know the list of things I nag you about. Review them in your mind. Any progress to report? He will either say yes and report or say no. Then you can get on with whatever else you want to talk about.
NOW- If you have nothing else to say to him, then THAT's where your real problem is. God bless, Donna
Thursday, March 23, 2006
Ok.. so your mother says it's your brother who gets the picture you both want. IF you have a FNQ lesser than that of a piece of concrete, which by the way never talks and so has not that bad a FNQ, you cut dead all you believe have insulted you which includes bad mouthing them.
If your FNQ is cosi cosa, you accept the decision, but not really, and in your heart you harbor resentment toward both your brother and your mother and anyone else who sides with them. This makes for awkward silences at family barbecues and the occasional nasty crack that comes out of nowhere, but not really.
Here's the deal. RULE OF FAMILY #1 is that you can never get in between someone and their mother. Which means that your mother and brother have their own thing between them, and very possibly he has paid for the picture in ways you have not, and probably don't care to. You just don't know. So you keep the gracious heart and let it go. Your mother however may have broken Rule #1, since she got in between you and herself unless she had good reasons, which she could have.
There is something to keep in mind...you are under no obligation to be a doormat,so when it turns out that the picture is A. stolen property, B. worth quite a bit, so it means the government is taking a huge bite out in taxes, or C. Radioactive so it's making people who own it sick, you are under NO obligation whatsoever to post bail, contribute any money to the Feds, or pay hospital bills for your brother and his family who must take radiation therapy for ten years.
Wednesday, March 22, 2006
Situation 1...Say, you and your brother are fighting over the gold framed landscape of horses and a haywagon, in a field framed by Lombardi poplars, and by fight I mean each of you is claiming rights to it after your mother, who is not yet passed, thank God, passes, and your mother decides it will go to your brother, not you. What do you do?
Answer tomorrow, you think about it.
Tuesday, March 21, 2006
IF the liar is an adult, or a child over whom you have no rights and you aren’t the State District Attorney, you have a bigger problem. If someone is lying behind your back, you can always make them say it to your face in front of witnesses. They’ll deny for sure, then you have the necessary means to label them a coward. If they are lying to your face, you need to decide if it’s the ditch you want to die in. If it isn’t.. well, they can either be dead to you or you never trust a single thing they say without checking. If it is, then you call them on it.. whatever it takes. Hire a detective, lay a trap, follow them yourself. The problem with all this is that you give them power over your peace of mind. Depends on how big the lie is and sometimes, knowing the truth has its downside.
My cousin Louella had an inkling that all was not on the up and up with her hubby and a certain co-worker. A large inkling related to the fact the co-worker’s husband called her to commiserate, and see if Louella was interested in revenge that came under the category of good for the goose, good for the gander, if you know what I mean. Louella confront her hubby, who denied. Now, Louella didn’t really want to know. She decided to believe her hubby, who decided to break it off with his lady friend. Which I believe had something to do with the difference is body fat to muscle ratio between him and the other guy. (The reason I know all this is that the co-worker lady in question spent three hours sobbing at my Formica table, asking what should she do.. but that’s another column) And Louella is very blissful, thinking that all is well. I’d tell her she was crazy, but she hasn’t asked.
Monday, March 20, 2006
Liars really annoy me.
And this is how you deal with them:
FIRST,and this is key. You better be 100% convinced that they are lying. Because the really good liars lie to someone they know wants to believe them. I mean really. They'll look you in the eye and say, I can't believe you don't trust me. And YOU, palooka, will be doubting yourself, feeling all bad that you could have had suspicions.
Yeah, every one of you that's had a cheating boyfriend or a kid steal you blind knows exactly what I'm talking about.
More tomorrow on what you do next.
Saturday, March 18, 2006
Thursday, March 16, 2006
Tuesday, February 28, 2006
Vengeance always comes back to bite you. Like the time that my next door neighbor's son Joey stole his best friend Lou's girlfriend,Neesa and Lou told everyone that Joey was a no good, and was cheating on Neesa with Arnie Leola's girl, which he wasn't. Arnie went and cleaned Joey's clock, Neesa who was about to go back to Lou, found out about Lou's lying, realized that Joey would take a hit for her, and married Joey three months later. Lou on the other hand ended up by himself. You see my point.
Friday, February 24, 2006
Dear Curious, One of my cousin's nephews had a little boy, who as a baby always smiled...like when you brought him in a room full of strangers, complete unknowns, he'd look confused for a second, no more, then he'd smile at everyone, who then said, what a brilliant child and smiled back. This same cousin had another nephew, who had a little boy, the same age, who when faced with the same situation, would fall on the ground, hide his face and kick. One had savvy the other didn't. God bless, Donna
Thursday, February 23, 2006
When this happens, pull the knife out, wave it in their face, make them at least briefly consider the possibility that you are both willing AND able to disembowel them, then put the knife down and move on. And file their face away in the NOT TO BE TRUSTED folder in your mind. God Bless, Donna
Wednesday, February 22, 2006
Loyalty is glue. It keeps us from flying apart.
I'm not saying be an idiot about it, sometimes you gotta cut a person loose, but only under extreme circumstances, and the benefit of the doubt is not a bad thing to give. It's two way street, mind you. I'm not talking about the loyalty of a dog who gets kicked twice a day, and hasn't figured out he has sharper teeth, and 40 pounds on the guy with the shoe. Or that you shouldn't be careful about who rates your allegiance. There is no substitute in this world for savvy. God Bless, Donna
Thursday, February 16, 2006
Dear No,This question had me puzzled until I realized what you are actually asking. This is not about loving your hubbies, it's about which sister bows to the other. There is no answer to the question you say you're asking, without knowing more. For example, is the dead husband dead after forty years of faithfulness, with grandchildren weeping PAPA PAPA at the bedside, or dead after a shot to the heart made by a 45 caliber gun carried by the loving spouse to the bedroom where she found him with his fancy woman?
In any case, the sister who rules is the one who didn't have to write to ask. God Bless, Donna
Wednesday, February 15, 2006
Confused, on occasion tormented, Old Forge
Dear Confused, It's simple, you are mixing up like with love. No one in a million years says you have to like your family. Like is having the same taste in music, or the same sense of humor or going to Macy's instead of Lord and Taylor's on the day after Thanksgiving. That has nothing to do with family, that's just finding people who are like you, so you feel good about yourself. You can like all kinds of people for this or that. Family, you don't have to like at all. I mean you can like your relatives, but it's not necessary. God bless, Donna
Tuesday, February 14, 2006
Dear Not Let me get this straight? Are you the cow? And if so, how did you get smart enough to talk? If you're that smart, you are probably also smart enough to know that by speaking of yourself in this manner, you've already answered the question. Which is to say that cows, milked or not, owned by whoever, are not ever consulted on who their milk goes to and at what price. They have no choice, and mostly just chew their cud, and let the farmers duke it out. God bless, Donna
PS. Which is to say the fact that you even had to ask me in such a way means that the price of milk is too high.
Saturday, February 11, 2006
He married his sweetheart and stayed married for 65 years, you could watch his show with everyone no matter how young, and all he had to do his grin that boyish grin, and you knew the world was fine.
Ah Pierino! You live forever in our hearts, "til the end of time." God bless, Donna
Monday, February 06, 2006
What's the point of new families, anyhow? I don't get it. Why do you keep harping on it? My family's the best, Mohegan
Dear Best, My cousin Alberta's loved her son Marko so much we worried she would have a heart attack if he ever got serious about a girl. And he did get serious, ok he was 43, the girl was a doll, who saw somethng in Marko that the rest of us didn't, and they were going to be married the last weekend in June, it was a while ago, when my father was still alive, may he rest. Alberta did everything she could to get inbetween them, none of it worked, and bingo she died, right at the rehearsal dinner. All because she didn't want her son to create a new family. Here's my point. New families are gonna happen, even dropping dead won't stop it. Marko and his bride got married a year later, had three kids, and Alberta missed it all. Probably did them a favor, but what a waste. God bless, Donna
Wednesday, February 01, 2006
There's this guy, very sweet, who I have been seeing for quite some time. He's got the look, he's employed with a very reputable shirt factory, and my family approves. But how do I know if what I feel for him is love? Could it be me thinking I should be in love, or maybe that everyone thinks I should be? OR even a weird indigestion? Help me Madrone, he is even went ring shopping with my mother, even though I am not supposed to know that. How will I know what to say when he pops the question? Fizzy in the stomach, Cedar Rapids
Dear Fizzy- You are fizzy in the head that's what you are. Did you read your own letter? This is what you tell him...NO. Unless of course, love is not one of your requirement for marriage, it isn't always. But if you loved the poor schmoe, you'd know the difference between what you're feeling and a belly ache.
God Bless, Donna
PS. You could marry him just the same, but it will be trouble down the road. But even if you did love him, there still could be trouble down the exact same road. Love is no guarantee of serenity, which is a good thing, otherwise there would be no reason for opera.
Tuesday, January 31, 2006
Monday, January 30, 2006
helps in this regard.
First determine numbers: Only include those relatives who would take one on the jaw for you.
For each qualified relative figure
How strong are they –
How many pounds of lasagna each can eat at one sitting?
How fast are they?
Assuming no traffic, how many exits of the LIE or some equivalent expressway can they cover in twenty minutes?
IF there is traffic, how willing are they to drive on the shoulder and cut in when it runs out?
How mentally tough are they?
When they curl their nose, how far do people back off?
How fiercely will they fight?
Like Al Pacino in Scarface?
Like Ray Liotta in Wiseguys?
Like Robert DeNiro in Meet the Parents?
This will give you some idea of how much back up you can count on.
Sunday, January 29, 2006
PS- If you speak to him with respect, and he tells you, that's my mother, watch it, you have a bigger problem, which may be what she's trying to tell you, in her own way. But in that case, better to know where you stand, sooner rather than later.
Thursday, January 26, 2006
computer crashes, and you don't ask him to help you even though the job you are dropping him off to is with Circuit City where he works with people who have crashing computers because you don't want to impose. That is an error. Ask, it will even things out in a good way.
Wednesday, January 25, 2006
Money stands in for things like muscle, respect, independence, love and revenge, sometimes all at once. It's nothing by itself. The sooner you learn this, the better off you're gonna be. Let's say you are a poor shmoe without, excuse my French, a pot to piss in which translates to a rustbucket for a car and clothes from St. Vincent de Paul. Therefore, no girls will give you the time of day. Or so you think. But then one day, your number comes up and you hit the lotto. Made in the shade? I think not. You'll have just as hard a time finding one who loves you even if you weren't rich, as you did finding one who would have loved you when you were poor. And it will be worse, because when you were broke, you could count somewhat on the sincerity of the person in question because what was in it for them?? It happened just that way to my sister's nephew Al, who won the tri state powerball, married an extremely well put together blonde who he met on the round the world cruise he took to celebrate and ended up six feet under three months after they tied the knot, under mysterious but
not indictable circumstances.
Tuesday, January 24, 2006
Monday, January 23, 2006
Friday, January 20, 2006
Guilt- Wallowing in it, either as a giver or a getter is pointless. Even dipping your pinky toe is worth niente, nada, zip, jack, bupkis... however you want to say it. Same difference.
Regret- Useless, learn and move on
Whining- Goes along with regret, no one want to hear it.
Pity- Insulting all around
Nagging- You can't care more than they do, believe me, it never works. Unless you do it because you love the sound of your own voice, in which case it's a sport, and I know some Olympians.
Wednesday, January 18, 2006
Tuesday, January 17, 2006
Monday, January 16, 2006
You might be wondering what's up with human history these days, and what can I say, it's doing what it always does. All the families are figuring out how to get what's theirs, and then some.
Or they ought to be. It's a real shame when that doesn't happen. Now notice I said get what's theirs, not steal it.
Anyhow, you can trace any current fuss you want back to that. It's all about the big pie and who gets what size slice. All these new types of families popping up everywhere, the only real reason to fuss is that the slice gets smaller everytime you say another whole category of families has rights to a share.
But Madrone, I can see you thinking it, even if you don't say anything. What about Mother Teresa and Gandhi, and people like that?? They don't even have families, do they?? And I say, yeah they do..And you say how so?? And I say, they defined their family as everyone in the frigging world. That's what's called a saint. Look it up.
Saturday, January 14, 2006
There was the first cavewoman, because believe me, it was a woman, who put two and two together, or rather one and one together and figured out what was causing all the babies. That started the first families.
They caught on early that the strongest families got the most stuff, so families started trying to outmuscle each other. That went on for a long time, ended up with REALLY heavyweight families, the biggest shots were the kings and the emperors. Then there was a pecking order, down to the poor slobs who did all the dirty work, serfs and slaves, who weren't barely allowed to have any real families of their own, which was very savvy on the part of the big shots.
But the rulers got greedy, and savvy went by the wayside. They wanted more and more stuff and they got so much of it, they couldn't just go and knock the block off some joker who tried to take it away. And they still wanted more. SO they let some of the slobs become merchants, and have families of their own. That was an error, because those families, one by one, weren't all that much, but they started banding together. Not because they loved each other, but they caught on that if enough of them co-operated, then the kings were in the soup and the soup was tasty and the pot was big, and lots of families could have a spoon, even if it was tiny.
That's how we ended up with democracy. Which is basically all the little families saying to each other- look, we'll agree on some rules, my kids can get stuff, your kids can get stuff, and some kids will have more than others, but nobody's kid can get all the stuff, and everyone's kid has a fair shot at some of it.
But Madrone, you say, what about communism and socialism? If anyone had explained the rules of family to Karl Marx, he would have realized he was barking up the wrong tree. Communism is nuts- who is going to work and work and work, and not make their family better off?? Never happen. Socialism has a better shot, but it depends on the generosity of the better off families, who will only be generous as long as they're pretty sure their own kids will come out on top, no matter what.
Soon I will set you straight as to what human history is up to these days.
Friday, January 13, 2006
Sometimes people say to me Madrone, what do you offer that I can't get, say from my best friend, or even my worst enemy? Who died and left you boss? This is a good question, if by good you mean idiotic and question you mean insult. But I am a going to show you how much I love you and explain myself...this once.
The giving and getting of advice is either very simple or very complicated, depending. For example, you ask your best friend Santina whether the $400 number you want to wear to your cousin Magnolia's second wedding is the the right color. She can say yes or no. End of story, but not really. Because Magnolia is getting married to someone she must have had hiding under the bed, since the daisies have hardly had time to droop on the grave of her first husband. Now hubby number one was no prize, everyone knows this, but a reception for 300 at the Huntington Swan Club complete with open bar, cocktail hour and Venetian table is not generally part of the required year of mourning. So you might just want to know if the color is right, but only if you have the imagination of a stick, which does happen, but most likely you are also asking if you should attend at all, and if you do, how large should the envelope be. She however can say nothing except, you look fabulous, not everyone can carry off eggplant chiffon.
When Santina goes home, she will get on the phone with her sister Roselle, and tell Roselle that the dress, as great as the color is, makes you look like an elephant, and that Magnolia is in for it, as hubby number two is way too young and the inheritance from hubby number one is far too large to mean anything but trouble. But you'll never hear it , because Santina is not your blood relative and Magnolia is. Which is to say you would be aggravated the minute she starts telling you how to think about your own family
Here's what I can do for you...I will tell you what other people would tell you if they could, but they can't. What you do with it is your business.
Thursday, January 12, 2006
- Never get in between someone and their mother. If you just followed only this rule you’d be better off then 90% of the mamalukes out there who have no sense.
- Never refuse family a favor.
- Never ask family for something you know they can’t give.
- Never believe it’s just about the money.
- Never pretend it’s nice when it’s not.
- Never expect thanks when you kick someone in the teeth
- Never mix up the people who have what you want with the people who want what you have.
- Never fight a battle you know you can’t win, except if your honor is involved, then always fight it.
There is more, but these are the main ones.
Wednesday, January 11, 2006
I get tired of repeating myself, no one listens, but it can’t be helped. Madrone, you keep asking me , what do you mean by family? My neighbor’s cousin Dolly adopted a boy from one of those countries where terrible things happen…is that family? Or Sylvana treats her husband’s aunt like it was her mother... is that right? Well, first let me say for ME, family is blood. What can I say, in the village where my people came from, a stranger was someone you didn’t have blood ties with, and we didn’t marry strangers. Most people have eight great grandparents, I only have four. It’s true, my hand to god.
All I can tell you who is MY family and don’t try to tell me otherwise. Which is what I’m saying…no one can tell somebody else who is or isn’t their family. Oh you can try, but it doesn’t matter. It’s beyond both your understanding and your power to change. But once it’s decided, the rules are the rules. End of story. . So now where were we?
Tuesday, January 10, 2006
Monday, January 09, 2006
It’s January. Hop in de ass, as my grandfather, may he rest, used to say after a glass of two of home made muscatel. Time to remind you of the resolutions you should be keeping although you won’t, why should this year be any different?
1. Take stock of who has what you want, and how badly you want it. Kiss up accordingly.
2. Figure out who wants what you have. Decide whether or not you want to give it to them and what they have to do to get it.
Lots of times the same person ends up on list 1 AND 2. Then it depends which list they are higher on.
3. To hell with diets. Especially one that doesn’t know the difference between good bread and the crapola that most places pass off as the staff of frigging life. Please.
4. Don’t let me stop you from exercising, but don’t come crying to me when you find out you’ve jammed up your knee or given yourself a hernia.
5. Family first. Now this isn’t always possible, there are a lot of real crumbums out there and they have to be related to someone. In that case, you might be better off taking whatever heat comes from putting them second.
6. Screw guilt, and regret, too while you’re at it. In my book they are just barely above pity in the Waste of Time Hall of Fame. So you made a mistake, ok, you meant to do it, whatever, take your lumps, learn and move on. For the love of Pete spare everyone your whining about rigged juries or narcoleptic attorneys. No one wants to hear it.
God bless, Donna
God bless, Donna