Monday, August 25, 2008

Joo answers questions posed to advice columnists!

This one is more like commentary on the letter, but whatev...

DEAR ABBY: My husband's best friend of 40 years, "Nick," started dating a woman about a month ago. Nick has been down on his luck personally and financially for several years. He called and asked if he could bring "Hattie" to our home for dinner. We agreed, hoping it would be a good relationship for him.
Within 15 minutes of meeting her, Hattie told me she was bipolar and suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder. She has two small children, but when I asked where they were, she changed the subject. Nick doesn't have kids, and he's nearly 50.
When Hattie asked me for something to drink, I offered her tea or soda. She took the soda, then said she preferred beer and wine, and did I have any. I poured her a glass, then she asked for a second and proceeded to drink 2 1/2 bottles of wine. Later, she told me she had a "headache" and asked if I had anything for pain. I offered Tylenol. No, she wanted something with a "kick." Needless to say, they didn't stay long after that because she was looking for prescription medication, and we had none.
My husband told Nick that Hattie was not the type of woman he needed. Nick shrugged off my husband's advice of not seeing her anymore. Personally, I don't want that woman at my house again. If Nick calls and wants to bring Hattie around again, how should we say no? -- BEST FRIEND'S WIFE

First of all, why weren't you serving any alcoholic beverages with dinner? Clearly you don't live in Wisconsin. But for "Hattie's" benefit, here are the obvious rules for social drinking:

Other people are getting drunk, you may proceed to get drunk.
Other people are having a couple, you may get drunk, but it's tacky to do so.
Other people are not drinking at all, you may have a couple, but not get drunk.

That being said, Best Friend and his wife had at least three bottles of wine in their house and they weren't planning on having any at all? Saving it for themselves? Do you have a wine cellar?

Secondly, why did you ask where her children were? Hattie says, "I have two small children," and you reply "Where are they?" As in, "Where are they right now?" Obviously, if you're going to a friend's for dinner, chances are you're not going to drag the small children around. Since she didn't want to discuss "where" they are (as in they don't live with her), maybe she just feels it's none of your business.

Please don't think I'm standing up for Hattie here. She is clearly a nutjob. When she mentioned her headache, did she expect Best Friend's Wife to bust out, "We have Tylenol or would you like a Percocet?" Really, maybe that happens in some social circles, but BF and BFW don't even like to share their wine!

Finally, Best Friend tells Nick, who he's known for 40 years, "I don't think this is the type of woman you need to be seeing." Like Nick's his child or something. Perhaps that's not particularly surprising, since his wife drops the value judgement "he's been struggling personally and financially for several years." And you haven't, because you're perfect, right?

Bottom line. Yes, Hattie seems nuts. But so does Best Friend's Wife, and quite possibly, Best Friend. Nick is apparently one of those people who are weak-minded and find themselves surrounded by psychos. Poor guy.

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