Dear Crabby, How Do I Tell Telemarketers to Take a Hike?

Dear Crabby with a Laptop Computer

Dear Crabby, The other night I was sitting down to a nice meal with my family and the phone rang. Normally we let the machine get it, but I was expecting an important call, so I answered it. Of course, it turned out to be a telemarketer. Any suggestions on how I can get them to buzz off? Thanks, Ned Annoyed Dear Mr. Annoyed, Sure – don’t ever answer your phone – ha! Seriously, I know exactly what you’re saying. You’d think in our age of fancy-schmancy technology there … [Read more...]

Dear Crabby, Why are Back-to-School Supplies so Expensive?

Dear Crabby, I am sending my kids to school for the first time (they’ve been homeschooled until now) and am finally ready to start back-to-school shopping. Some of my mom friends have been lamenting over the cost. Is it really that expensive? Thanks, Mona Moneysense Dear Mrs. Moneysense, All I can say is prepare yourself for sticker shock. Back in my day all we needed were the basics: paper, pencils, ruler, and books – all items the schools pretty much gave to us! I do remember … [Read more...]

Dear Crabby, Would You Vote for Donald Trump?

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Dear Crabby, Between the GOP debate last week and Donald Trump’s visit to Michigan this week, I am curious… would you vote for him? He seems to have a no-nonsense approach to politics that you would appreciate. Thanks, Billy Bipartisan Dear Mr. Bipartisan, That’s an excellent question, young man. Let me say that as a general rule I try to stay away from discussing politics… with anyone. It’s not that I don’t have an opinion -- quite the opposite in fact as all my loyal … [Read more...]

Dear Crabby, Which Branch of the Military Should I Join?

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Dear Crabby, I’m a senior in high school this year and after graduation I thought I’d enlist while I figure out what I want to do with my life. Someone suggested I check out the U.S. Coast Guard, but that’s not a real branch of the military, right? Thanks, Wayne Wanderer Dear Mr. Wanderer, Not a real branch… what? Are you kidding me! What are they teaching you in that so-called high school you’re attending? The Coast Guard is absolutely part of the military and a very vital … [Read more...]

Dear Crabby, Should I Welcome My Neighbor’s Swimming Dogs?

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Dear Crabby, I have a neighbor with three dogs. The dogs joined my dog and I for a swim—everyone was having fun—until the neighbor woman called her dogs home and didn’t seem too happy over the situation. Oddly, her ex-husband cares for her dogs and she doesn’t seem to at all. What should I do if the dogs return? Sincerely, Love my neighbor's dogs   Dear Neighbor Dog Lover, Why do you want to swim with a bunch of dogs? You call that fun? I love animals too, but it … [Read more...]

Dear Crabby, Why is there no Holiday in August?

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Dear Crabby, I want to take a long weekend next month and looking at the calendar I noticed August is free of any holidays, why? Sincerely, Augustus Looking   Mr. Looking, You don’t say. I’ve never noticed. In fact, I thought you had to be pulling my leg. With all the religious holidays, national holidays and made-up Hallmark Holidays, I figured every month was covered in them. Looking at my trusty “Puppies in Baskets” calendar one of my grandkids bought me for Christmas … [Read more...]

Dear Crabby, What’s your Favorite Ice Cream Flavor?

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Dear Crabby, What’s your Favorite Ice Cream Flavor? Sincerely, Ben N. Jerry   Hello Mr. Jerry, My all-time favorite flavor of ice cream is vanilla. That cool, milky dessert and I go way back. Although, I like most ice cream flavors—vanilla, chocolate, strawberry, butter pecan, cookie dough, mint chocolate chip, and even Superman—ice cream really goes with everything. Did you know that Sunday is National Ice Cream Day? July is National Ice Cream month—hot month, … [Read more...]

Dear Crabby, Why Should I Ask You?

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Dear Crabby, Why should I ask you for your opinion about my life's questions? Justin Wondering Well Mr. Wondering, The short answer is I have a weekly column and you don’t. But perhaps you meant what qualifies me to answer questions about life? Then I would have to say because I come from the Silent Generation—that slice of the 20th Century squeezed between the Greatest Generation and Baby Boomers. That group of listeners grew up in a tough time—the Great Depression—we heard it … [Read more...]

Dear Crabby, Should we travel this Fourth of July?

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Dear Crabby, Should we be nervous to travel this Fourth of July? Sincerely, Pat Triotic Dear Mr. Triotic, I get the feeling you’re talking about the government warnings about heightened security threats that seem to come every Fourth of July weekend since 9/11. I am a person that feels strongly about keeping his family safe—I’m from that era—it’s the man’s job and that sort of thing. Therefore, I understand that “stay close to home” feeling of security. However, if an … [Read more...]

Dear Crabby, What Do I Do About the Wedding Budget Blues?

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Dear Crabby, My wife and I just received an invitation to her college roommate’s wedding. Right away she starts talking about coming up with a budget to cover the showers, parties, gifts, and travel out of state. Is this normal, and how much is this gonna set me back? Thanks, Patrick Pauper Dear Mr. Pauper, Holy cow! A budget for attending a wedding? Just when I think I’ve heard it all. I thought this sounded crazy, so I made one of my grandkids go on the computer and do that … [Read more...]