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Dear Readers, I would like to share with you this series of letters, after which I would like to make a very important point,which could save, if not lives, then a great deal of agita down the line.

Dear Madrone,

What do you think of someone who wears white pants after Labor Day?

Shocked, Lost Valley

Dear Shocked and Lost,

I think you need to get a life and stop wasting my time. God bless, Donna

Dear Madrone,

Why are you so mean to people? Feelings Hurt, Lost Valley

Dear Hurt,

Please rephrase the question. God bless, Donna

Dear Madrone,

Why are you such a ball buster? Steamed, Lost Valley

Dear Steamed,

Getting there, try again, God bless, Donna

Dear ****

Why are you such a P*******? UNPRINTABLE, Lost Valley

Dear %$$$^$^#@,

Same to you. God bless, Donna

OK Readers, here's my point. Polite is all well and good, and I am all for it, in situations when it can't do any harm. But polite has its downside. Take the above jamoke question about who wears what pants when. There are so many ways that question is wrong, let me tell you two. First, who cares, if this sort of thing bothers you, you must be living in a dream world. Second, who would write in to ME of all people about said question, I'll tell you who, CLUELESS, that's who. So, a polite answer from me in this regard would give a completely wrong impression, which is to say, the impression that I care or think this issue is worth more than one second of the precious minutes I have left on this earth.

So, please don't waste my time or yours with baloney.

Dear Madrone,

I heard you speak at the ladies auxiliary last month, when you talked about nine times out of ten, and it was beautiful, I cried, it was from the heart. God bless. But I had a question… you said nine times out of ten, crazy goes further than muscle. I don't get it.

A fan, Mattituck

Dear Fan,

What I mean to say is that the muscle guys are usually just that, muscle. And by muscle guys, I mean anyone with weight to throw - maybe they're loud, maybe they're big, maybe they're flush, whatever. And so they get used to people bowing down to them, just like that, after a while no need to even flex, just give a look that says, I'm the muscle guy, I call the shots. Along comes a person who is crazy- which to a muscle guy is someone who doesn't give two about who has muscle and who doesn't, this throws everything off. Threats don't work, and the muscle guy might have to do something. Nine times out of ten, they don't want to, it's too messy, too much trouble, and the muscle guy gives. But this is where savvy comes in.. knowing which is the nine times and which is the tenth. My uncle Rocco's goddaughter Carolina confused this when she mocked the masculinity of the fiancé of her neighbor's obnoxious daughter at the bachelorette party. We are still sending casseroles over.




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.

Rules of Family Archive

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