Short Answers

By Jeff Johnson and Paula Forman 


Dear Short Answers:
What do you say to someone who wants you to guess their age? I have a friend who thinks he looks much younger than he does. He asked me how old I thought he was and I guessed ten years older! Now he’s mad at me. How do I avoid answering that question in the future.
Stepped in It

Dear Stepped:
Questions relating to age, weight, or significant others should be answered with great caution and the bare minimum of candor. They are not questions — they are requests for affirmation. If you must say something — “you’re the best, babe” – works for your everyday narcissists.


Dear Short Answers:
I am thinking about moving in with my new boyfriend but there is a big problem — he has a cat. And I hate cats. I jokingly told him that cats are for lesbians anyway (we are gay). He glared at me — said nothing — and got another cat the next day. Do you think we can make this work?
Feline Foe

Dear FF:
In a word, NO.


Dear Short Answers:
A well-to-do couple recently moved to town and bought a fabulous old house. The problem is they have TERRIBLE taste and are ruining the exterior with their “renovations.” Plus, their new furniture is hideous (at least, what we can see of it when it’s unloaded from the delivery truck). Legally, they can do pretty much anything they want to their house since it’s not technically in an historic neighborhood. But we all think it’s a crime, anyway. How do we stop them? I suggested a boycott of their “socially-distant” dinner parties (which don’t sound like much fun, anyway). What do you think?

Dear Neighbor:
We think “you all” should find another hobby. The taste police may find you guilty of truly egregious manners. You can pick your friends — but not your friend’s furniture.


Dear Short Answers:
My partner and I are seriously considering having a surrogate child when it’s a little safer to do that but we can’t decide whose sperm to use — his or mine. He thinks we should both donate and leave it to chance. But I know that I will want to know who the biological father is and I think our kid will eventually want to know, as well. How do we decide?
Papa Potential

Dear PP:
We agree that it is important for many reasons to establish paternity, but that is easily handled when the child is born. So look into your heart (and perhaps into your genetic history) and decide if you are BOTH agnostic on who is the biological papa. If you are, then why not leave it to chance? Or plan for two!


Dear Short Answers:
How do you deal with a nosy neighbor? It seems as if my life is her business. I don’t want to be insulting but enough is enough! Help!
I’m Looking through You

Dear Through:
Less sharing and window shades should do the trick.

Life is complicated.  Short Answers isn’t.

Send a question about whatever is bothering you to or go to and a psychologist and sociologist will answer.  A selection of the best questions will be printed every week in KonkLife.

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