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June 2006

Dear Madrone, what is attitude? How do I get some? Doormat, Lesterville

To ALL the Doormats: Attitude is related to savvy, but not the same thing. A person with attitude but no savvy often ends up in the emergency room of life, with things broken, hearts, noses, promises. A person with savvy, but no attitude might end up a professor or something, an egghead who knows what's going on, but can't do anything about it. Attitude comes in degrees, and you don 't have to say a word...it's how you look out of your eyes. BACK OFF! or DON'T START WITH ME! or I KNOW WHAT"S WHAT. In other words, MESS AT YOUR OWN RISK.

Now, how do you get that? Some people are born with it, Even in the playpen the other babies steer clear, give over their pacifiers. But you can learn it by getting fed up with being a doormat, and saying ENOUGH. I don't give a rat's A** if you're upset. Here's how it's going to be. No one can talk anyone into having attitude. You come into it on your own, when you get sick and tired of being walked all over and something clicks in your brain, not unlike the click of a finger on a trigger. God bless, Donna

PS...A little attitude can go a long way.

Dear Readers, In about 90 of every 100 cases, you can be 100% sure. Here's just some of those instances.

Nine Times Out of Ten...

  • the disaster that you think of ISN'T the disaster that happens
  • the thing you worry that you forgot to do, you did, but you don't even think about the thing you actually forgot
  • the person you bent over backwards for holds it against you
  • the money you spent trying to make someone love you makes them resent you
  • the bad thing that happens has unexpected good results
  • the good thing that you got also came with side effects you didn't count on and don't want
  • the money you lent to family isn't repaid in full
  • the person you don't want to hear what you said behind their back hears it
  • the day you call in sick to go to the sales at National Liquidators even though you NEVER do it and probably won't again, is the day that the big boss comes around to inspect
  • your children will grow up and do all the things they swore they'd never do when they had children of their own

There is more. This is just some of what you can count on.


Dear Madrone,

It would be a public service to your readers to print this warning. They need to be aware of the pitfalls of this dangerous activity, which starts out small, like that little tick that gives you Limes Disease, - no one expects a tick to survive the citrus acid, but you see that they do- and become this big huge hairy deal, that makes you sleepy and ruins your joints if you're not careful. So many families would be spared so much pain if they knew to avoid this gateway temptation. Mark Myword, Director The Institute of Family Health


Dear Mark, I am very glad to print this always timely warning. God bless, Donna

Beware of Onesy Onesy

Onesy Onesy is a dangerous game. It goes like this. Your wifey makes a comment about your mother's gravy, compares it unfavorably to the starchy crapola purchased at the local A&P. You take this without comment, but later that night, you mention in passing that the last time you had dinner at with your inlaws, you practically had to beg for helpings, they are so stingy with portions,how on earth could your family be so flabby. Then the wife hits you up with a comment about the water bill being paid late, just like the way your brother always returns the lawnmower needing gas. To which you reply at least he mows his lawn, which is a slap at her sister who the wife can't deny has a disgraceful amount of dandelions on her front lawn, only it isn't your place to point it out. AND SO IT GOES. Trust me, if you don't stop it, it ends with gunplay.

 

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Pamela Bongiorno Monk is a full time faculty member of Penn State University, where she teaches creative writing, both fiction and non fiction. She pursues freelance writing, authoring plays and feature articles. She has broken nearly as many rules of family as she has enforced.

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