Monday, February 21, 2011

The Advice Column

Stewie once asked Brian, "Do you really read PARADE magazine?"
Well, I do, and I love the new "Manner Up!" column. It lets me wonder how many of our fellow Americans are fully realized adults.  Let's check out yesterday's letter:

"My friends and I go to dinner once a month.  I lost my  job, so I have to watch what I spend, but they still choose pricey restaurants.  I don't want to be a killjoy, but I can't afford this!"   Janine K., Salt Lake City

The lady in the magazine, Nancy Bilyeau, goes all around Robin Hood's barn to tell Janine that she should tell her friends that she loves hanging with them but she can't go for the long green while she's scrimping.  Or words to that effect.  And then she suggests that maybe they could try all doing a potluck at someone's house, and points out that maybe her friends don't realize that times are tight.

Here's my take, if you want to know it.  I am very sorry for Janine's current jobless status, and I hope she finds something even better than what she had really soon.  But, Janine, if these people are your friends, then you should not be embarrassed by having to tell them that you're on a very tight budget these days!  Sure, you don't want to explain this sort of thing to total strangers, but this is why, out of the current world population of 7,088,436,889 (most of whom seem to be on the Baltimore Beltway on any morning) you get to pick a couple dozen or so to be your boon companions.  And those people, if you pick them correctly, are the sort of people to whom you can say, " I can't swing dinner at Pain GrillĂ© et Confiture pour le ThĂ© this month, so let's hit Burger World and we'll tie on the feedbag there, whaddya say, huh?"
Burger World awaits!

And then maybe one of your friends will help you find a new job while you're there!  But, Janine, good living starts with good friends, and being a good friend starts with being able to say what's on your mind!

Next week in Parade: "America's Love Affair with Cheese!"

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