Timely Query

Dear Short Answers: What is politics? Innocent Bystander Dear Innocent: Politics is the artful manipulation of any situation in service of one’s own agenda. Like Unlike

Try Politics

Dear Short Answers: Is there any way to get old people to stop talking about themselves so much?  I’m sick and tired of hearing what my 70-year old neighbor had for breakfast and how long he had to wait at the post office.  Don’t old people have anything interesting to say? So Not Interested Dear [...]

Closed Mouths Don’t Get Fed

Dear Short Answers: What’s the best way to handle a neighbor who parks all over your property during holidays, inconveniencing your visitors, and what should his response be when notified? Irritated Dear Irritated: A firm but polite note to your neighbor right now seems appropriate. As to his response…we can hardly wait! Like Unlike

“I Want to Be Alone”

Dear Short Answers: I have a neighbor who is too encroaching. Now he says he’d like to start going to the gym with me. I want to be on good terms, but I’m not interested in this. I’d also like more privacy whenever I’m outside just going to and from my car. This is a [...]

Make It Go Away

Dear Short Answers: A neighbor of mine is collecting money for a local charity. I like the neighbor and want to be friendly but I don’t like the charity and would not contribute on my own. Do I just ignore her request? Do I explain my feelings about the charity (which would probably anger her [...]

May I Help You?

Dear Short Answers: My neighbor is elderly and becoming frail. We are friends and I would like to help her with her garden this year. How do I offer without offending her? Younger in Springtime Dear Younger: Keep it light. No need for lengthy explanations. Drop by on a nice day and say “put me [...]

If You’re Not Part of the Solution

Dear Short Answers: My neighbor has two small children (around 10 or 12 years old I think). When they come home from school every day, they have to wait outside in the front yard until their mother comes home to unlock the front door. Now that it’s getting colder, I am worried about them. Should [...]

Uneasy Truce

Dear Short Answers: Is there any way to keep birds from nesting in my hanging plants? Unwilling Landlord Dear Unwilling: We have the same problem!  We have tried removing the nest as its being built, moving the plant, dryer sheets, loud noises, slamming doors, dirty looks, and finally a negotiation with mom: you stay but [...]

Yackity Yack/Bow Wow

Dear Short Answers: We live in a neighborhood where there are 20 plus dogs who yip, yap, yelp and bark constantly. We get no peace trying to enjoy our deck and yard. The neighbors show no respect for taking their dogs in when they start barking. Some even leave for the day and leave the [...]

It’s (Still) a Free Country

Dear Short Answers: The house next door is for sale and my wife and I are very concerned that we get the right family — quiet with no little kids. The last family had two little terrors who started playing outside (weather permitting) at the crack of dawn every Saturday and Sunday. My wife wants [...]

keep looking »