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Dear Olga: My husband is acting like a real a$$ lately…

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Worried about Canker Sore Issue


My husband is acting like a real ass lately. His best friend from high school recently moved back to town after his divorce. He's a pig. He's far and away the rudest person I've ever met and my husband will tolerate no criticism of him. Last week we all went out to dinner at a burger spot. The animal was unhappy with his onion rings so he started grabbing the French fries right off my plate. By the third time his filthy hand came towards my meal, I held my fork above my plate and said menacingly, ” don't do it!" They both looked at me like I was crazy. Without ever addressing me, he asked my husband if I was serious and my idiot of a husband shrugged his shoulders and said," probably man, she doesn't like people touching her food". Then they rolled their eyes in unison. He can't understand why I'm mad. What should I do? Harriet

Dear Harriet

You should probably stick the two of them together in a spare room with a couple of bunk beds and avoid fork brandishing. They are both acting like kids at camp.

Grown men with any civility do not reach over and grab food from another person’s plate and husbands who have any expectation of enjoying marital relations ever again don’t side against their wives in front of other people.

It’s time for you to sit your husband down for a fireside chat. It’s nice that he has his friend nearby and the two of them should be able to enjoy some quality time together. You don’t have to participate though.

Couples can have separate friends. That can actually be great for a marriage. The friendship that you’ve described, however, is not conducive to matrimonial harmony. This person might be a terrific person who’s just going through a rough patch. Maybe that’s why he’s acting like a jerk.

The question is why is your husband acting like a jerk. The two of you are going to need to figure that out sooner rather than later. You have an opportunity to set up some relationship ground rules right now. Take some time to figure out how you’d like to deal with objectionable friends going forward and clarify the rules of respect between the two of you.

Don’t worry. You can handle this.


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My daughter returned from a semester abroad recently with pink hair and an aversion to shaving her underarms. I have no idea how to talk to her. I find her new style disturbing but I'm afraid to alienate her by saying anything. What should I do? Cassidy

Dear Cassidy

What you should do is act like a loving accepting mother and suck it up. Go into your attic and find the children’s books that you used to read to her. Purple Hair, I Don’t Care

Remember that one?

Your instincts are right. If you jump on her, she will resent it. I’m with you Cassidy. I am no fan of arm pit hair on young ladies but save your maternal might for issues that really matter.


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I have an issue with a long-lasting canker sore on my tongue. My dentist has been putting me on perma- hold for a couple of months. I have a broken crown that's sharp and probably causing the problem but just in case it's tongue cancer I've provided my friends with detailed funereal directions which, by the way, are exceptionally fun. At first I felt like that was a good plan. Now I feel like a weirdo. I haven't wanted to burden them with my anxiety but I think I've caused them some concern anyway. In response to their questions about why I'm planning my funeral, I've found that a dismissive wave combined with the phrase, remember me fondly, isn't the best way to change the subject. My attempt at an upbeat approach to a potential medical problem hasn't been ideal. How are you supposed to handle these things? Lilly

Dear Lilly

The fact that you understand that you’ve acted like a total weirdo is what makes you normal. I don’t want to encourage your irresponsible attitude towards your own health care but I understand.  Plus, I find you amusing.

Funereal directions?

Remember me fondly?

Over a canker sore?

That’s some good stuff. I’m only disappointed that I didn’t get to hear any details about this exceptionally fun funeral that you’ve sworn your friend to.

If I thought you were serious about taking on the grim reaper as opposed to confronting the doctor or dentist, I would have responded to your letter privately with an entirely different tone.

It’s ok for you to be scared. Hiding your vulnerability with elaborate premature funeral arrangements, is a chicken s**t move though. Yeah, I try not to swear and I’m sure I’ll hear it from Scamper, but you got my goat.

I don’t know where your mother is, young lady but here’s what I’d tell my daughter.

Cut the crap Missy! We are going to the dentist. Period!

Listen Lilly, if someone else isn’t there to mother you, you’ve got to mother yourself. Go to the dentist. Everything will be ok and you’ll be proud that you handled this like a grown up.


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My husband and I just moved into the most wonderful neighborhood. We absolutely love it. We have even been invited to the annual summer block party next week. There's only one problem. Some bossy Bessy up the street says that she's running things and that I have to make pickled potato salad. I've never heard of pickled potato salad and it sounds disgusting. Can I get away with regular old potato salad or is that really a colloquial thing? Lucia

Dear Lucia

Pickled potato salad is probably one of the most disgusting phrases I’ve ever heard. It actually made me gag.

Bossy Bessy is messing with you. It’s a power game. You make your potato salad any way you like it and if she complains draw her a map to a long walk off a short pier. With any luck, she’ll find herself floating in a brook full of brine and she can pickle herself.


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