Expert advice on manners, gay marriage, dating, etc.

Local Life, Opinion July 20, 2011 1 Comment

by JIM HARRIS
It’s time once again to answer some of the many questions sent to me by readers. As a lifelong subscriber to Reader’s Digest, I am well versed in many subjects, and I’m happy to share my knowledge with youse all. I will answer the questions in their order of urgency.

Q: My doctor told me I am allergic to excitement. What can I do about that?

A: Attend a lot of Rick Santorum rallies. I guarantee you will not have any allergic reactions, even though the last time Rick gave a speech, he almost had a facial expression. He says what people who can’t think are thinking. Rick Santorum is so boring, he was recently endorsed by the Sleeping Air Traffic Controllers Union.

Q: I am dating a girl who refuses to use birth control, and I’m way too young to be a father. What should I do?

A: There is a new form of male birth control that lasts for 10 years, and I would highly recommend it to you. It’s called acne.

Q: Jim, what do you think about the gay marriage law that recently passed in New York state? I’m on the fence, so to speak.

A: I think it’s the best thing since crab cakes. I think it’s great that gay men in New York are finally allowed to marry someone other than Liza Minnelli.

Q: I read a story in the paper about a woman in Toronto who jumped out of a 15th story window trying to commit suicide, but she miraculously survived by falling on top of a taxicab. If that happened in downtown Philadelphia, how do you think it would have turned out?

A: In Philly, some guy would have yelled out, “Hey, lady; get the hell out of here. That’s my cab!!!”

Q: If the phonetic spelling of a word is the way it really sounds, why not just spell it that way in the first place?

A: Beekauz it wood be too komplikated. Anyway, with the advent of digital “talking books,” phonetic spelling has become unnecessary. It will soon be relegated to the Museum Of Obsolete Tools (MOOT), along with social skills and dress codes and human beings without cell phones.

Q: The bathroom windows in City Hall, where I work, are always wide open. When I’m standing at the urinal, I can see directly into the office buildings across the street. How far away do you have to be from others before you shouldn’t care if they see you?

A: Well, it depends on the size of your, ahem, portfolio, but personally, I usually like a buffer zone of about a mile-and-a-half.

Q: Can I rob Peter to PAY Peter?

A: Sure. The government does it all the time.

Q: When I talk on my cell phone in a restaurant or movie theater, some people give me a dirty look. I feel like telling them where to go. Should I?

A: Yes. Tell them to go to Camden, New Jersey. That’ll teach ‘em. Unfortunately, there are still some relics from the Victorian age left who believe in a now-defunct word called “manners.” But don’t worry your pretty little head about it. Every day there are fewer and fewer of those old fogeys around. In fact, in a few years the government will make it mandatory to talk on cell phones in restaurants, movie theaters and all business establishments, so you will have the last laugh.

Q: When I start my car, a light goes on, saying “AIRBAG.” Is my car insulting me?

A: No. If that were the case, it would say “POMPOUS airbag.”

Q: As a God-fearing person, can I covet my neighbor’s HUSBAND?

A: Well, Pat, I can find no commandments against it, so covet away!

Q: I feel nervous and wobbly all the time. What can I do?

A: It’s perfectly natural to feel that way. The Earth actually is wobbling on its axis, and our breathable atmosphere is in constant danger of being flung off into outer space. Who wouldn’t be nervous? Sometimes just getting your nails done can help. In extreme cases, though, you might want to have yourself placed in an induced coma to reduce your stress level.

Q: Why does my cat smell like cigarette smoke? I don’t smoke, and neither does he.

A: Cats can smell like many things for a wide variety of reasons. Of course, your cat could be cheating on you with an owner who smokes. You probably need to hire someone to follow your cat around. It just so happens that I follow cats around for a living. I am very discreet, and my rates are reasonable.

Q: If “a tie is like kissing your sister,” then what is a loss like? Does this saying mean that kissing your sister is “half-good?”

A: Not exactly. A loss is like doing the tango with your grandmother, and a tie is really more like kissing your half-sister (which, by the way, is legal in six states, including — lucky for us — Pennsylvania).

Q: Why don’t all the popcorn kernels pop at the same time? Are they like tiny time capsules?

A: No, every kernel is a unique individual with needs and wants of its own. The order of popping in largely determined by age. The younger ones are usually eager and pop right away. The more mature kernels like to savor the whole experience and tend to take longer. Some never pop at all and just get stuck in your teeth. A few rebellious types even manage to escape back into the wild and spawn new corn stalks. It’s the cycle of life.

Please use all of the above information for good only. If you have any more urgent questions, feel free to call me anytime, day or night, or call me from a crowded movie theater just when the film is about to reveal the identity of the serial killer.

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  • Eoharbour

    What do you say to a person that l oudly blows their nose into the napkin at the table in the dining room of a large facility?