Friday, May 26, 2006

Why Dear Abby Is with the Comics

I never understood, until reading it today. I laughed out loud at the second letter, where essentially a woman complains about her husband and closes with the fear that he is bisexual. Huh? While I'm sure she has helped people with their real problems, I sometimes think this is insane. I never realized the comic potential before, I was usually just annoyed that there were not more comic strips in that valuable real estate above Bridge with Omar Sharif and the Daily Crossword.

I am going to start a "Dear Maggie" column here at un-cooler than you. Here are the rules:

1. Letter must be three short paragraphs.
2. The first paragraph must compliment me, for my problem-solving skills, and also yourself, for being a devoted reader and all-around swell person.
3. The second paragraph must describe a situation or relationship.
4. The closing paragraph must end with a question completely unrelated to what you described in paragraph 2. It is acceptable to reiterate your virtue in this paragraph
5. Sign it however you'd like.

Dear Maggie:
I'm a longtime reader and an avid un-cool follower. I consider myself to be a good person, never judgemental of others. I'm writing to ask your opinion about a certain person I know, we'll call him "Jebediah."

Jebediah and I work together in an office. It's a nice place, and there's free coffee. While not in the same department, we frequently see each other in the hallways and exchange a friendly smile to acknowledge one another. Our bosses are great pals and often golf together on the weekends. Jebediah is not a stylish man, but is always polite and never foul-smelling.

Maggie, I'm a nice person - should I invite Jebediah to attend the Dateline taping where I confront the man who abducted me when I was 10 and forced me to eat shoe laces in a cave? He may or may not be a crack addict.


Wants to be Nice

I will answer anything posted in the comments.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Get Out Your Hankies...

See? Front Page News. The CTA is... dirty. Now, come on people. It's always been dirty. It's probably no dirtier today than it was when I was 12 (ie 20 years ago.)

I think it's interesting that there are a few distinct reactions to this:

1) Arm yourself with Clorox wipes and Purell and Howard Hughes it up!
2) It's all the CTA's Fault! They should clean up after all of us constantly!
3) What is the big deal? We need germs and this didn't kill our grandparents. I love Bum Poop!

So, can I say "all three, please - except for the part about the bum poop because that's just being contrary!!" The lack of personal responsibility for hygeine is getting worse and worse. Yeah, I'm talking to you, blue jacket tan pants waits for the train at Merch Mart going Northbound in the morning and SPITS every five seconds, sometimes even over the railing! Gaaaaah! Disgusting.

Where the Tribune failed with their story is that it did not draw anyone in by including a personal angle. "Hey, if you practice good hygeine yourself, the CTA will become cleaner on its own! Put your Wendys bag in the trash can sometimes and see the difference it can make! Stop wiping your nose with your hand, then grabbing the pole!" Instead they focused on the CTA method of cleaning - which is not entirely bad, incidentally. They at least make an effort, but they can't have people de-germifying every surface on an el car when that person could be cleaning bird poop off of the escalator handrails (which is a much more valuable service, in my opinion.)

Someday the Tribune will say "Where is someone who will give people tissues?" And I will be here, pack extended.
I'm going to try to notice how many people today have purell and 'barrier methods' for touching stuff. It will be fun.

PS THANK YOUR BAGGER! The bagger makes sure your eggs and your canned goods don't wind up in the same bag. Smile and thank your bagger once in a while OK?

Sunday, May 21, 2006

The Law of Parties

So we had a party last night. A lot of people came, and proved the Law of Parties: No matter how big or small a place is, everyone will congregate in the kitchen. Look at this clown car kitchen!

I'm a lousy hostess. This is always what I find out either during or after a party. Somehow though people keep coming back and bringing good wine, so Scratch must be doing it right! I was amazed at the generosity of our guests. We have great friends and I'm glad that I got to see a whole bunch of them at once - but parties always make me wish I could have five people over one night, then five more another, so I could actually be with people instead of running around like a drunken fool. Maybe next time!

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