February 16, 2005

Cleaning Up the Post-Valentine Debris

Today's Musical Selection: "Love Hangover" by Diana Ross

Hello, everyone! As promised, everyone's favorite lovebirds, Uncle Millie and Aunt Beatrice, are back for another round of their nationally-known romantic advice. Today they're coming to us from Intercourse, Pennsylvania (where else?). I asked Uncle Millie and Aunt Beatrice if they had a good Valentine's Day, and they told me they did. Aunt Beatrice told me about the carriage ride they went on, and the flowers Uncle Millie got her (red roses, she said, and he was kind enough to remove the thorns and leave a quart of whiskey in the garden he stole them from, unlike in years previous), and other nice romantic moments. Uncle Millie told me about certain other highlight of the day that I can't even begin to reproduce in a family-oriented space such as this. The sum total of it is that they had a wonderful time, which I'm glad about.

And since I have things to do (being a Media Sensation is a lot of work!), I'll turn the column over to Uncle Millie and Aunt Beatrice.

- - - - -

If Music Be the Food Of Love, Then Get the Radio Cranking, Because I'm Hungry, by Uncle Millie and Aunt Beatrice

UM: Hello, lads! And a belated Happy Valentine's Day to all our young lovers out there.

AB: I hope your Valentine's Day was as enjoyable as ours! We had a wonderful time, and Uncle Millie was very romantic.

UM: Aren't I always?

AB: Up until he started pouring me a drink he calls "Cupid's Arrow." It consists of corn liquor and Kool-Aid, which Uncle Millie served to me as "punch."

UM: Well, sometimes romance needs a little nudge.

AB: You might be more familiar with this concoction by its original name, "Say Yes to Anything."

UM: Well, as far as that goes, it had its intended purpose. Because you did, my dear. And we did. And, Lord, did we ever-

AB: That will be quite enough of that.

UM: I convinced her to try things she wouldn't even consider sober. For example, there's this position called "Holland Tunnel," in which-

AB: Millie! Can't we let our private life stay private? Particularly if you're interested in having a private life ever again in the future?

UM: You make a persuasive case, my love. Put that way, I see the wisdom in the old proverb, "Silence is golden."

AB: If only you saw the wisdom in it more often.

UM: Well, how about we read our first letter?

Dear Uncle Millie and Aunt Beatrice,

So I went on a blind date for Valentine's Day. A friend set it up, and I went along, because who wants to be alone on V-Day, you know? Well, she was pretty and not bad company, but I didn't feel a spark, and I don't really want to pursue it any further. Apparently she felt differently, though, and she's been calling and e-mailing all day, trying to pin me down on a second date. But I don't want a second date! And my failing to return her calls has not sent the message, apparently. How do I get her to leave me alone?

Hunter the Hunted in Escondido

UM: Well, lad, when it's over, it's over, and she needs to accept it. If silence doesn't do the trick, you'll need to be direct about it. Perhaps you can send her a bouquet of flowers with a card reading, "Stop calling me."

AB: Classy.

UM: Not roses, though, lest she get the wrong idea. Venus fly traps, perhaps.

AB: Hi, Hunter. As I see it, you have two options: You can contact her yourself, explain politely that you're not interested in pursuing a relationship, and ask her to stop calling. But if she's this persistent, she might take that as a sign you're playing hard to get. So you might want to mention it to the friend who set the two of you up, and ask that your friend bring it up with your date, just to make sure she gets the message.

UM: Alternatively, you can use one of my favorite approaches: When she calls, adopt an accent and say, "He not here. He not live here."

AB: Oh, that's mature.

UM: And I suppose playing the telephone game with the mutual friend is your idea of an adult move?

AB: That's completely different.

UM: Of course it is. Nonetheless, lad, are you sure you've thought this through completely? You mentioned that she was pretty. And she's quite obviously enchanted by you. Methinks that you could at least get a bit of bedroom romping in before calling the whole thing off. You must seize these opportunities, lad!

AB: Ah, somehow I knew we'd come back around to this. There's something almost refreshing about the purity of Uncle Millie's hormonal drives.

UM: I simply believe in striking while the iron is hot!

AB: Or, if necessary, slipping the iron booze until it warms up.

UM: Can't blame a guy for trying.

Dear Uncle Millie and Aunt Beatrice,

What is your opinion of online dating sites? I've hit a bit of a dry spell in dating by conventional means, and I'm thinking of trying the online route. I've heard good stories and bad stories from my friends... some found real winners through online dating, other haven't. I figure that in your line of work, you must hear plenty of stories. So what do you think: yay or nay on online dating?

Richard in Grand Rapids

AB: Hi, Richard. Personally, I'm not really comfortable with the idea of these online dating services. Call me old-fashioned, but I've always believed that you can't really find out whether someone's worth dating without meeting them in person. I know some of these sites have elaborate methods for helping you find the right person -- "compatibility tests" and so on -- but, well, people can lie pretty easily on those sorts of things.

UM: People lie in person too, you know, love.

AB: You being a prime example.

UM: That was unnecessary.

AB: You were asking for it. Anyhow, Richard, as I say, I personally don't think much of the idea. But I'm only one person. And I'm sure Uncle Millie will be happy to explain how you can use these sites to get meaningless sex.

UM: There is no such thing as meaningless sex, my dear. All sex is meaningful.

AB: So all those one-night stands you've had with cocktail waitresses and co-eds, they were all meaningful?

UM: Certainly. They meant I was having one hell of a good time.

AB: You're impossible.

UM: Now, lad, I see no harm in these sites. If you're not catching fish in your pond, you ought to cast your line elsewhere. However, I must say that if you're not attracting women by traditional methods, you're probably not trying hard enough.

AB: How is that?

UM: Think of it, lad: There's someone out there for everyone. Even Michael Jackson was married once or twice. And even if your someone isn't immediately apparent, there are enough close-enoughs out there to take care of your needs.

AB: Oh, you smooth talker, you.

UM: While there's no harm in dipping your quill in the online inkwell, lad, I believe you should first redouble your efforts to attract women by traditional means. Have you been turning down women because they're carrying a few extra pounds, or because they have no discernible intelligence, or because they seem certifiably insane? Stop being so snobbish! As a wise man once said, "There's Miss Right, and there's Miss Right Now."

AB: I have no idea what I see in you sometimes.

UM: That's not what you said on Monday when we were-

AB: I believe we agreed not to talk about that anymore.

Dear Uncle Millie and Aunt Beatrice,

Help! I'm a junior in high school, and I broke up with my girlfriend of four months a couple weeks ago. That stings, but I'm mostly over it. What I'm not over is the factt hat she has already taken up with another guy. I swear, she makes a point of walking by my locker arm-in-arm with her new boyfriend every day. It's driving me crazy! Why does she have to rub it in my face that she's found someone and I haven't? How do I keep from going postal on them?

Jason in Seattle

UM: Oh, lad, women are a cruel and devious lot at times, aren't they? Can't live with them, can't live without them. Well, I suppose you could live without them, but life would be awfully dreary. And your wrist would give out eventually.

AB: Let me step in here. Hi, Jason. I'm sorry about things not working out with your girlfriend. And if she really is paradign her boyfriend by you to make you jealous (which is possible), that's immature and she should be ashamed. On the other hand, it's entirely possible that she's not trying to go out of her way to walk by you, and it's coincidental. Especially if yours is a small high school, it's quite possible your paths cross daily by coincidence. You just happen to notice it because it's a sore subject for you.

UM: Oh, poppycock. She knows exactly what she's doing. She's rubbing it in.

AB: You don't know that.

UM: Yes, I do. I know women and how they operate.

AB: Don't you think that I, an actual woman, might have some insight on this?

UM: That would make sense, in theory, but often a dedicated observer can manage more astute insights about someone than she can about herself.

AB: Naturally. And when people think of you, of course "astute" is the first word that comes to mind.

UM: Never mind that, lad. We're straying from your problem. Fortunately, in high school, this problem yields a fairly straightforward solution. I assume your school has a football team, and this team undoubtedly has a couple of large gentlemen on its offensive or defensive line. Find one of these beefy fellows and befriend him. Offer to do his homework for him. Then point out your former girlfriend's new love and encourage him to set the fellow straight on what is and is not permissible. I'll bet you won't see them carrying on in the halls any more. If you choose your assistant wisely, perhaps lover-boy will abandon your ex entirely out of fear.

AB: Why do so many of your answers involve violence?

UM: I'm a lover, my dear, not a fighter. Sometimes, however, stronger measures are called for. You can catch more flies with honey than vinegar, but you can kill more flies with a hammer than with honey.

AB: Actually, I usually find it's easier to kill flies with a fly-swatter.

UM: You get my point.

AB: I'm sure Ghandi would approve.

UM: If Ghandi had gone to an American high school, I'm sure he'd have done the same thing.

AB: And another column draws mercifully to a close. Please feel free to send in your romantic questions!

UM: And if anyone wants instructions on how to perform the "Holland Tunnel," get in touch with me! I'll send complete instructions, complete with photographic examples.

AB: You did not take pictures.

UM: As far as you knew, no.

AB: Thank you for ruining a wonderfully romantic day.

UM: My work here is done. Happy hunting!

- - - - -

Thank you, Uncle Millie and Aunt Beatrice! We'll hear from them again in two weeks or so.

Meanwhile, I'm off as well. So much to do, so little time. See you later!

Posted by Fred at February 16, 2005 11:20 PM
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