Short Answers

By Jeff Johnson and Paula Forman


Dear Short Answers:
I just moved to a neighborhood where the houses are very close together. My wife and I don’t mind this except for one thing. Our neighbors never close their curtains. It doesn’t matter whether they are brushing their teeth or taking a shower. We can see pretty much everything from our kitchen window. And believe me, that’s the last thing I want to see in the morning when I’m having coffee — somebody sitting on the toilet! How do I tell them to be more discrete without sounding like we’re peeping toms?
Peep Show

Dear Peep:
WE UNDERSTAND!  Get Venetian blinds — easily adjustable for your viewing/non-viewing preference.


Dear Short Answers:
My husband (Paul) and I were separated for almost two years and during that time, I must admit, I said a few harsh words about him. Well, maybe more than just a few. Fortunately, we are back together and I think it’s going to work out. UNFORTUNATELY, all the bad things I said about him are coming back to haunt me. “Friends” think it’s funny to repeat them to Paul. Even intimate sexual details that I said in anger. Paul is taking it in stride for now. But I live in fear that some of the worst things I said will come out. Should I come clean and tell Paul everything or just cross my fingers and hope for the best?
Ms. Second Chance

Dear Ms. Chance:
Congrats! Brave stuff you’re doing. As for the ill-mannered folk who are treating your confidences and pain as cocktail chatter — tell them to cut it out. A few “very inappropriate” or “old news, jackass” should shut it down. As for Paul — no need for confessions of past sins.  Working on the present is hard enough.


Dear Short Answers:
It’s true that I might be a little overweight but why does everybody have to criticize what I put in my shopping cart? What’s wrong with frozen pizza? I’ve started shopping at 6am so that I don’t run into anybody I know. Should I start wearing a disguise? How do I tell people to mind their own business without pissing off everybody I know?
Not that Chubby

Dear Not:
As a country, we are in our adolescence when it comes to consciousness about diet and nutrition. The good news is that we are aware that our bodies cannot be taken for granted. But with this new awareness, some people take inappropriate liberties. Either thank them for their interest — or tell them to stuff it — your choice.


Dear Short Answers:
About six months ago my wife and I moved into a new house.  Since then, we have found little things like a gold bracelet and an earring and things like that that the previous owners clearly did not mean to leave behind.  A couple of weeks ago we found $200 in the corner of a closet.  My wife says that we should call the previous owners and give everything back. I disagree. We have found problems with the house that they never told us about and the bracelet and the $200 don’t come close to paying for that. What do you think?
Finders Keepers

Dear F&K:
Undisclosed issues with the house are irrelevant.  That’s what inspections are for.  Give back the stuff!!

Life is complicated.  Short Answers isn’t. 

Send a question about whatever is bothering you to [email protected] 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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