To the person suggesting the postal service remove the word rain from their creed, they might as well just get a new...

Short Answers, July 8

Short Answers

Paula Forman and Jeff Johnson

Sunday, July 8, 2018


Dear Short Answers: A couple of weeks ago, one of the guys I work with was fired. We’re not really friends but we hang out in the same places so we know a lot of the same people. He begged me not to tell anyone that he got fired because he didn’t want any of the girls to know that he wasn’t working. I didn’t mind lying for a while, but now it’s getting complicated when people ask me how work is going, etc. I know that I promised, but how long do I need to keep lying? It’s really starting to bother me. — Sue

Dear Sue: When someone asks you “how work is going,” it is safe to assume they mean how is work going for you and not a status report on employment for all others — especially for someone who is “not really a friend.” So we don’t get the “lying” part. We suggest a meditation on how you would feel about a colleague discussing your status at a bar — and go from there.


Dear Short Answers: My boyfriend (of 28 years) and I are planning to get married in NYC this summer. We were just planning to go to city hall, get a license and get married. No big affair and no big party. Since I had to tell people at work that I was taking the week off, I let it slip about the wedding.

A few people at work are now planning to come to NYC to help us celebrate. I said OK because I wasn’t thinking. Now I realize that there will be photos on Facebook and all my friends will find out that we got married but they weren’t invited.

Now I don’t know what to do. I can tell my friends at work not to come, but that will piss them off (especially since they’ve already bought plane tickets). Or I can try to explain to my real friends that we didn’t really invite anybody — but I’m not sure they will believe me. How should I handle this so that it doesn’t spiral out of control? — Help!

Dear Help: Calm down and discuss with BF (of 28 years). If you really want it to be a private affair, then the two of you should draft a note to your work folk (and perhaps friends and family) and tell them of your wishes … or belly up and plan a party and make the decisions all couples do about who is in and who is not.


Dear Short Answers: I’m at an age (let’s just say over 60) where I just don’t feel like being nice to people I don’t like. Or going to a party with a bunch of boring geezers. My husband says that I’m turning into a cranky old lady. I think I’m just being honest and true to myself. What do you think? — No Sweetie

Dear Sweetie: No doubt you are both right — you are being “honest and true to yourself” and perhaps you are getting cranky. The question is, are you OK with being “honest” but alone?

Life is complicated. “Short Answers” isn’t. Send a question about whatever is bothering you to reflector@shortanswers.net or go to www.shortanswers.net and a psychologist and sociologist will answer. A selection of the best questions will be printed every Sunday in The Daily Reflector.


Humans of Greenville


Local photographer Joe Pellegrino explores Greenville to create a photographic census of its people.


September 19, 2018

The Leroy James Farmers Market vendor of the week is Nooherooka Natural.

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Q: I am trying to decide if I should buy an air fryer. What are the benefits and the downsides of using one? — T.N., Greenville

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Bob Garner

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How did Carrboro writer and teacher Georgann Eubanks become the leader of the North Carolina Literary and Historical Association?

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Q I am reading your book “The Well-Behaved Child” and have a question that it doesn’t address. I am a single mom with children from two different fathers. One of my ex-husbands (my son’s father) and I have arranged to do regular “child-exchanges.” One weekend,…


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Q I have been married to my second husband for 24 years. We have a 16-year-old and I have two adult children.

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Carolyn Hax

September 16, 2018


Dear Short Answers:

I have a wonderful family with three kids, five grandkids and a terrific husband. I’m not sorry about any of the decisions that I made, but I am feeling more and more like I didn’t fully explore the alternatives that seem to be available to…

Short Answers
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