The Answer Is “No”

Dear Short Answers: When two adult couples go out to dinner together, is their a nice way to say that we don’t want to split the check 50/50 when we clearly spent far less than the other couple?  My husband and I don’t drink and we often split a single entree.  It doesn’t seem fair […]


Dear Short Answers Over the past couple of years my parents have gotten more and more frail and require a lot of care and attention.  Fortunately, my 3 brothers and I all live fairly close by and can stop by every day if we needed to.  Unfortunately, my parents have decided that as the only […]

Life Stage

Dear Short Answers: It seems like everybody who has kids these days has no time left in their lives for their friends.  Should I give up trying to engage with parents of young kids and just wait until the kids go to college before trying to have an “adult” get together again?  My idea of […]

Ground Rules

Dear Short Answers: Do you think that a Christian Conservative and a Liberal Democrat can have a happy marriage? Friend of a Friend Dear FOF: Depends on what they think marriage is — if they agree on that, anything is possible Like Unlike

Mine Field

Dear Short Answers: I just met my son’s new girl friend and he wants to know what I think of her.  My honest reaction is that she is not smart enough, not pretty enough and not interesting enough to be dating my son.  But I don’t think that’s what he wants to hear.  Without totally […]

The Law of the Land

Dear Short Answers: When two men get married are they both “husbands” or is one the “husband” and one the “wife?”  I want to make sure I am being “politically” correct. KFM Dear KFM: Both men are usually referred to as husbands. This isn’t about political correctness, it is about the law. Like Unlike

Rule for the Road

Dear Short Answers: What are the responsibilities of house guests on a holiday weekend? Or any weekend? Tom T Dear TT: House guests should be entertaining, allow hosts a few hours of private time each day, and leave their room as they found it.  Yes, you should change the sheets — or at least offer. […]

Tiny Guests

Dear Short Answers: My house is a death trap for babies.  What precautions are my responsibility and what are properly the responsibility of parents? Nervous Dear Nervous: For family, put yourself out a bit.  Removable baby gates are very helpful for staircases.  In general, take sharp objects and anything you care about off coffee tables […]

Let It Be

Dear Short Answers: Any advice about multi-generational vacations? Mom in the Middle Dear MIM: Cut yourself a lot of slack — and everyone else too. Remember that everyone made this choice with good intentions.  Free yourself of your usual standards — whatever they are. Paper plates are fine, grazing is fine, and sense of humor […]

Design Po Po

Dear Shortie: Why are the designs on Kleenex boxes so ugly and old-fashioned?  Can’t they design anything decent? The Taste Fairy Dear Tink: Sprinkle with your special powder and make them “object d’art.” Like Unlike

keep looking »