From a Submariner's Perspective is a weekly column, written in response to the letters sent in to advice columnist "Prudie" at Each week, The Submariner responds to the letter writers in a way that author, Emily Yoffe, probably can't (but perhaps would like to...). Each entry is headed with a link to the orginal questions and Yoffe's answers. Enjoy!

Also, if you have questions that you'd like answered by The Submariner, or anyone here at "The Fly", just write to me at and I'll forward to the appropriate party/parties for an answer (or you can write to them directly via the e-mail addresses on their pages)! Once the answers are published, I'll drop you a note letting you know.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

...on God's Staying Of My Boyfriend’s Penis (11/25/2009) <---Original Prudie Letters Can Be Found There

Greetings Shippers! And Happy Holidays and a merry four-day weekend to you all! Too, Happy Prudie Day, one day early! And what a fine, fine Prudie Day it is, eh? Do you have visions of early-morning shopping dancing in your heads? Is Friday a day of competitive shopping for you? :-) No matter how you plan on spending the day, or any of your holidays, I hope that you’re all happy and healthy and warm and that there’s nothing but good coming your way for the holidays and beyond. But, before all of that, and before I get ahead of myself, let’s have a crack at these letters, shall we?

LW#1: Prudie, I have the bestest, most awesomest, greater-than-greatest boyfriend in the whole entire world! He’s absolutely the bee’s knees, Prudie, all wrapped up with a silver bow, dipped in honey, and then lightly dusted in powdered sugar to make him into Perfection Boyfriend with a side of stewed apples! The problem? Well, he’s withholding sex from me. Okay, wait, that sounds like a dichotomy. Let me start from the beginning. We’ve been dating for three years and he’s been all about having the sex every which way, all the time, telling me that he loves me, etc. Then, awhile back, when we moved in together, he decided that, on religious grounds, we needed to stop having sex because, due to his relationship with God, he’s decided that pre-marital sex is bad. Prudie, I admire his relationship with God, but that is pretty messed up right here. What can I do? Well, first off, and most importantly, you have to realize that this has nothing to do with God. Or religion. Sure, that’s a handy crutch that people have been using for millennia for doing/not doing whatever in the hell they want, but, it’s not what’s at work here (nor has it ever been). For whatever reason, this guy isn’t interested any more. Is it because, now that you’ve moved in together, he’s seen your dirty undies or maybe he’s realized that you do, on rare occasion, fart, or some other equally domestic thing that has turned him off because he’s not quite the bee’s knees you thought he was? Is it because, now that he can get it anytime he wants, it’s no longer appealing to him? No one can know that answer but him, but, you’ve got to know that, a) it’s not about religion, and, even more importantly, b) what it is about is manipulation. I’m not saying he’s manipulating you on purpose, but, I’m not saying he’s not. You know those women in terrible relationships you hear about on Oprah where, after twenty years of putting up with some douche bag, finally leave and say things like, “I never realized how controlled and manipulated I was.” That’s your future. This guy, conscious or not, is blaming God for his own change of mind. That’s bullshit with a capital shit and you need to leave him. Now. But, you’re not willing to do that are you? Because he’s already got you doubting yourself. And honey, that’s the first step to controlling you. I hope you read this because you’re about to become a Hallmark Sunday movie--well, 20 years from now (if ever) when you finally figure out what a spineless assmunch this guy is.

LW#2: Prudie, there’s a new girl in our small office. She’s lovely and wonderful, but, when a cute little laugh at the end a sentence would be just the kind of manipulative thing to affect to perfectly convey the right amount of vulnerability and nervousness, she snorts like a pirate. It’s a horrible snort. Terribly unladylike. I believe I should tell her about it because everyone notices it. How can I tell her that she needs to “nip it in the bud before it becomes a crazy habit that she carries through the rest of her adult life”??  Hmmm, so, this fresh, young, just-out-of-college girl snorts a bit sometimes and you’re worried about how it might affect her career if this “habit” continues? Condescend much? Why is it that I completely doubt that your motive is philanthropic? If you’re male, I’m going to say that you want to bed this fresh young thing but that you’re afraid that the girl’s snort will make you discernibly less turgid than you already are with your wife, and therefore even less able to perform than you currently are. If you’re a woman, I’m going to say that you’re the kind who thinks that looks, the right shoes, and appropriate hair-flicking are more important to climbing the corporate ladder than actually producing good work. Regardless, you’ve obviously never looked at Donald Trump’s hair. Talk about an annoying habit! Maybe he should change it so that he’ll be even more successful? My thought is that you should spend less time worrying about this girl’s “career” and “habits” and more time on your TPS reports. And if you’re genuinely worried, why not have a neutral third party observe you for a few days and then they can produce a report for you about your annoying habits. Once you fix all of those, then worry about this girl’s. Kay? Kay.
LW#3: Prudie, my father has been out of work for over a year. He left his last job due to personal issues with a petty and vindictive boss. As a result, he can’t use his last boss as a reference and has decided to put down my name instead. He’s asked me to act as if I was his supervisor and praise him to the heavens when I’m called. The problems with this idea are too copious to detail here, but, the most obvious is that I know nothing of his business (and second is that he raised me not to lie)! What should I do? Well, first off, you’re right, you know nothing of his business, which includes what type of worker he actually was. Secondly, why does he have to list his supervisor at all? He can enter “co-worker” or “colleague” or “shift supervisor”, etc. on his résumé and completely avoid the “boss”. No, there’s more to it than what you’ve been told. As for what you should do, though, I’d suggest being very frank with him and explaining that he’s put you in a terrible position by asking you to do this thing for him. Explain that you don’t know the first thing about his work, that you’re unwilling to participate in the ruse. Explain that you love and support him and that you know that if he does things the right way (the way he raised you), he’ll find a job. Finally, if you do get a call from a perspective employer, you can state that they have the wrong number, or that you now work for XYZ company and that you don’t wish to discuss anything about any other companies. Neither are complete lies and the strategy will allow you to beg off answering the questions without calling out your father to his potential employers. Good luck.
LW#4: Prudie, about six months ago, my wife and I moved into a new apartment. We can hear the neighbors fighting almost every night. Loudly. Perhaps violently? The language and attitudes are very abusive and we are worried for the wife. Also, the couple has a new baby, which makes us feel even more like we should say something. Should we call the police? If we do, they’ll pretty much know it was us who did as only one other couple shares a wall with them. What should we do? Should you call the police? What, as opposed to writing the Internet Lady? Listen, how will you feel if the wife and/or child end up dead? What if the wife gets a gun and shoots the husband for fear of her life? What if the bullet comes through your wall? If you’re just thinking a couple is fighting, you don’t call the police. However, when you’ve got proof of abuse, of course you do. I respect privacy as much as the next guy, but they’ve brought their fight into your home. Since you haven’t been specific about what you’re hearing, I can’t say for sure what you should do, but, I can say that once it went from suspicion of fighting (maybe someone saying something that indicates things aren’t rosy), to you actually knowing there’s fighting (black eyes, walls banging, abusive, threatening noise invading your space), you need to do something. Again though, I don’t know what you’re hearing, so I don’t know what’s appropriate. You can drop anger management pamphlets on their stoop, you can call CPS if the child’s in danger, and/or you can call the police if you feel a crime is being committed (abuse, beatings, etc). Regardless, start with talking to the apartment management because, even if this just how they “get along” it’s not fair for you to have to listen to their shit. Let management know what you’re hearing and how often. And don’t stop at telling them once if it continues. You have a right to not have your space invaded, too. Do the right thing.

So, Shippers, that’s it. May your gravy boats be full, your turkeys be stuffed and your cups runnething over and then over again. I’m off to decorate the lagoon and to BBQ a turkey (I’ve also caught some red snapper and mahi-mahi, and kept it raw, for my bestest diving buddy, MM). Happy weekend all. Fair winds and following seas...  And drive safely!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

...on Holiday Bitches and Pedophiles <---(11/19/09) Orginal Prudie Questions Can Be Found There

Hot damn! What a fine, fine Prudie Mornin’, eh shippers?! Holy smokes! A wonderful, calming mist has moved in over the lagoon and the weather is absolutely perfect today. It’s cool, the air is crisp and clean, and even though we haven’t hit the heart of winter yet, thoughts and reminders of what’s to come with the New Year are everywhere and I can’t wait! I simply love this time of year! However, we seem to have some Grumpy Gus letter writers who’d rather just skip the whole holiday scene and all of the lovely craziness that it brings. Let’s have a look, shall we?

LW#1: Dear Prudie. I’m a bitch. I’m talking, I am a fucking heartless, shitty, absolutely insufferable, incurable, dumb-assed, pursed lips, full of myself, terrible, horrible bitch. Really. Here’s what’s got me set off today. My future in-laws take a family portrait every year and send it out like they’re some sort of retarded Norman Rockwell scene wannabes (they even wear matching sweaters at Christmas and sing carols, but that’s a whole other letter). They’ve assumed that since I’m betrothed to their son (an adult man, by the way, Prudie) that I will be in their stupid, dumbass, bourgeois photo. Not only this year, but every year. Prudie, I want to have traditions with my own, as yet nonexistent, family. My fiancé is no longer a little boy and his parents need to cut the umbilical cord. What a bunch of fucking idiots they are. Can you help me with the scissors? Hmmmm. Well, yes, you are a fucking bitch. But, no, there’s no helping you. You say that you want your own traditions, with your own family, but that you can’t respect that same wish in others? That right there is the very epitome and definition of sociopathic behavior and there’s no curing you (unless, of course, you one day manage to breed and have sons and they all marry little copies of you, which, though it would be wonderfully ironic and a pleasure for me to watch as you were hit repeatedly by that psychic piano, would still be no cure). No, as incurable as you are, the only good you could ever do is to remove yourself from polite society, and the gene pool, by pulling up stakes and relocating to an uninhabited island. But, we both know that you’d never do anything so philanthropic. So, here’s my advice: tell your fiancé and his family exactly how you feel. Read them the letter you wrote to Prudie, even. That’ll solve your photo problem. I promise. Bitch.

LW#2: Dear Prudie, I recently married a man who I thought was Mr. Right. I mean, he is so helpful and considerate, and wonderful and perfect, and everything I could ever hope for! Well, except for the fact that recently I found naked photos of his adult step-daughter (from a previous marriage) on his computer. Some were taken on her wedding day?! Now, I no longer think he’s all-that-and-a-bag-of-chips, but rather that he’s a pedophile. What should I do? Look, I’d like to come down on you like a ton of bricks for so many things that you’ve said here, but, I won’t. I’ll just stick to the point (mostly). His step daughter is an adult. The pics appear to have been taken of her as an adult. You are talking about some high morality about the bond between daughter and father and even accusing him of being a potential pedophile, but, fuck, he’s not her father, you don’t know when their “relationship” started (or you’re not telling), and we don’t know at what age the daughter was when he married (and then divorced) her mom. And, in truth, none of that even matters, actually. Here’s what does matter: he has naked pics of a woman that he’s slept with on his computer. That’s it. Simple. I know, you didn’t say that he’s slept with her. I did say it though. Accept it. All of this other static about you raising kids alone and these naked pics being his step daughter are irrelevant. I’m here to tell you that, a) he’s slept with her, and, b) he’s still the same guy you married (which obviously means he may not ever have been what you thought he was). What you have to figure out is if any of that bothers you (it clearly does), and what you’re going to do about it. He’s lied about the photos, so, if I were you, I’d leave. But, too, I wonder why he lied? Was it that you blew a fucking gasket and asked “Why in the hell do you have naked pictures on your computer that I found while snooping?!” If so, he might have just lied out of impulse (which is no excuse, but still). What if he got those pics long after his divorce from her mom? You’ve left too much out (or it’s been edited out) for us to give specific advice, but, fact is, you don’t trust him, so, unless you can change your mind (and jumping to "pedophile" and "threat to your daughters and grandkids" indicates you’re past the point of no return), you should leave. As for if you can trust him with your adult daughters, why not also ask if you can trust your adult daughters with him? Are they helpless?

LW#3: Dear Prudie, I work in oncology and really like a patient at our practice. He’s single and looking to date. He has terminal cancer, but, I really like him and think we could be happy together. The whole idea seems awkward as he doesn’t know that I exist, and, I don’t know how to approach him. What should I do? I’m going to try to not be crusty here because this sounds like a legitimate, honest and sincere question. But, I must admit that the first thing that came to my mind when reading this letter was the women who court and marry inmates in state prisons (you know, the kind of prisoners who have little or no chance of getting out in the near future?). But because I wanted to be nice to you, I tried to imagine why a woman would go after a man like that in the first place? Is it fear of intimacy? Is it some deep need to commit to an impossibility? Your situation is not the same as the women who court prisoners, but, in many ways, it sounds similar. You know relatively little about this man other than what you can glean in a professional setting. I admit that that’s enough to be attracted to someone. And it’s enough to create a desire to see if there’s more. But, since there’s nothing there currently (relationship-wise), why start something that you know is doomed to be short-lived and very painful (physically and emotionally)? This ain’t Jane Eyre, sweetie. We don’t actually have to live a life of drama and misery. Sure, many people often choose to do so, but, it’s not a prerequisite. I hope that you’ll choose to find someone who has all of the qualities of this man, but who doesn’t have a terminal condition. He does exist, I assure you. Sure, he may be hit by a bus tomorrow. But at least he’d be someone who’s end hasn’t already been determined.

LW#4: Prudie, I have been with my boyfriend for two years and decided to host a family Thanksgiving wherein I’d invite his parents and my parents and we’d all have a great dinner and loads of fun and it’d be an event like they talk about in Home and Garden magazine and the kind that I’ve dreamt about hosting all of my life. And all was going well until my BF’s dad invited his gun-carrying, belligerent, asshole brother to the dinner. Now I don’t even want to have the get together. What should I do? Ah, the fantasy runs squarely into the wall of reality. As Morpheus says in my favorite movie, sweetie, “Welcome to the real world.” Look, this is actually a simple problem to solve, but, it involves a boyfriend who supports you and understands that your feelings are a priority in this case (because this is something very, very important to you--that’s also part of the real world, spouses sticking up for one another and being advocates for one another). Your boyfriend needs to make it 100% clear that you are both uncomfortable with guns and that you won’t have any in your house. Period. Sure, it’s your uncle’s 2nd Amendment right to arm himself with all sorts of powerful weaponry capable of destroying a small country several times over. Well, it’s your goddess-given right to deny him access to your property while thusly armed. This doesn’t have to be a big deal. It doesn’t have to include drama. It’s simple, really. If he wants to come by your place, sans penis extensions, let him. If not, your BF needs to tell him that he’s not welcome at your home. And if it comes to it, and he shows up armed to the teeth anyway, call the cops. I know, that’s pretty shitty, but either it’s important to you or it’s not. Lastly, though, I want to point out to you that no family dinner is ever going to turn out like they do in fairy tales. And life if full of compromises, so, make sure that the battles that you do fight are truly worth fighting.
Well, shippers, that’s it for today. What a batch of craziness, eh?  'Til next time, shippers, fair winds and following seas to you all. And remember to take it easy over the holidays. Your family may be mostly nuts, but, they’re you’re nuts.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

...on Plain Jane's Desire for a Man (orig. 11/012/09) <---Original Prudie Questions Can Be Found There

Hey there shippers! Holy smokes, it’s November! I mean, okay, I realize it was November last week, too, but I can really feel it and see this week. The cool, crisp air. The falling leaves. The kids building leaf canons out of cast off 50 gallon drums and gasoline. Ah, November and Darwin! Mixing since the beginning of time (or at least since the invention of gasoline) to bring us a more perfectly evolved race. But, that’s not our concern today, is it shippers? Nope. Today we’ve got letters! So, let’s get crackin’!

LW#1: Prudie, I’m plain. And men, well, you know, they’re all into hot chicks because they're all visually stimulated and don’t care about anything other than a hot rack and tight ass. So, I guess that leaves me out of the race. My friends say that I’m attractive and should get all gussied up and flirt (neither of which I’m comfortable with) and land me a man. But, since I know they’re lying about my looks, I just can’t bring myself to do it. Now, if I looked beautiful, you know, like Pam Anderson, with over-filled lips, boobs and butt, and barely two brain cells to rub together, I’d be more than happy to get out there. But, as I’m not Pam, I guess I’ll be a spinster. At least I’ve got my cats. What say you? Listen here, you fucking idiot. How dare you make blanket statements about guys as if we’re just brainless, thoughtless, walking penises, always looking for the next hot lay? So, women have a lock on desiring romance and chemistry and intelligence and wit, do they? Listen, if you have something, anything, to offer, there are men out there who will find you attractive. Would you wrap a diamond ring in a gawdy box with shiny wrapping paper and bows and ribbons and one of those cards that plays “Suwannee River” when you open it, or would you simply allow the ring’s class to speak for itself. Your friends are idiots and likely need to be wrapped in mylar and bows. You want a mindless prick? Follow their advice. You want someone who gives a shit about you? Learn to be comfortable in your own skin, in your own comfort zone, and quit blaming men’s supposed desire for a pretty face for your marital status. Some many of us actually value intelligence and wit and humor and class above vacuous playthings. And if that’s what you want, we’re worth looking for.  But, truth is, given what you've told us, I don't know if I'd want you to find me.

LW#2: Since getting married, my husband and I have attended Thanksgiving at his sister’s house with the rest of his family. Prudie, it’s horrible there. She runs the place like some prison camp! The kids are relegated to a single room to play in, dinner is eaten precisely at fourteen hundred hours, and, even before we all sit down to eat, my SIL is packing up the food! I’m through with this Gestapo treatment and want to do Thanksgiving like it should be done, in a relaxing way, valuing family unity and being welcoming rather than pretending we’re contestants on “The Thanksgiving Boot Camp Show”. What should I do? Okay, here’s the thing. Prudie has the right idea. You need to host your own soirée. But, she’s way wrong on execution! It’s too late this year to throw your own, alternative party. That’s just going to piss off everyone and cause much strife. You don’t have to attend your SIL’s this year if it’s just going to stress you out (feign sickness), but don’t throw a competing party this year at this late date. That’s just shitty. Instead, make sure that your husband is 100% behind you (because, without his support in this, you’re sunk and would be better off ordering out for Chinese food). Tell SIL that next year, you are going to host, and, too, that you’re going to host each alternating year. Period. From there, do just like Prudie said. Don’t back down, don’t take no for an answer, and, if SIL doesn’t show up, so be it. Maybe she can learn from you how Thanksgiving is supposed to be celebrated? P.S. As for how often you see hubby’s family members? That’s irrelevant and you need to drop it from your argument. Family is family, and Thanksgiving is Thanksgiving, no matter how often or infrequently you see them.

LW#3: Prudie, I work for a great dentist. Actually, he’s positively dreamy! His wife, though? She’s a flaming bitch. I hate her. Truly. Worse still is the fact that she’s the office manager and is committing insurance fraud by overcharging our customers’ insurance companies. I know good and well that she’s doing it and, too, that the dentist doesn’t know it’s going on. At all. He’s the model for honor and righteousness and dignity. If I can get the wife arrested without affecting the husband’s career or our practice, I can slide right into the wife’s slot (professionally and personally). What should I do? Okay, I may have been a bit unfair about motive there, but, come on! Where’s the conflict? If you value your job, if you need it to make ends meet in this tough economy, if your kids will starve or your mortgage will go unpaid, you stay quiet. Unless you’re required to commit the fraud yourself (which you should not do, obviously), you have little choice. But, too, you must start looking for another job. Today. As soon as you find a place to go to, then send the detailed, anonymous letter to the authorities that Prudie suggests. That may seem morally bankrupt and all, protecting your pay check, but I’m a realist and believe that so long as you’re not committing the fraud yourself, and so long as you’re honestly and sincerely looking for work, you’re morally okay. Now, if you don’t have to have the job to get by? Then write that letter today. What wifey is doing is wrong, and you know it. As for your aspirations to take her place? Forget them. Your dreamy dentist knows exactly what’s going on. And he encourages it.

LW#4: Prudie, I recently attended a funeral with my husband. A man there fainted, and, being a nurse, I went to help him. The man has a medical condition, so 911 was called. We got the man taken care of and went on with the funeral. On the way home, my husband asked me about the man who’d fainted. I started telling him about the man, but then went on to talk in great detail about the funeral (which, as I said, my husband attended, too). Amazingly, though, even though he’d been there and heard and seen everything I was telling him with his own ears and eyes, he got disinterested and started listening to the World Series! I was shocked and appalled and can’t believe how rude he was. How can I tell him how hurt I am by his insensitivity? Well, you can start by using your words in the future to sum.mar.ize. And, too, by noticing if there’s a game on if you decide to not summarize. You may watch the Oscars every year with rapt attention, but you don’t give a good god damn about sports, right? Well, he’s the same, only he doesn’t give a shit about the Oscars. So, out of respect, when one of you is into a big event (like the World Series), the other might want to use discretion about what they really need. Rehashing a funeral that your husband actually attended himself, while there's a World Series game going on, is a lose-lose situation. He was genuinely interested in what you did to help the man who’d fainted. He listened to those details with rapt attention, I assure you. He even asked you about it, and he was proud of you for your actions (and I’ll bet he showed it). That’s not something he could fully understand just by being there and he listened to you explain what had happened, what you did, and why. But pouring your heart out, rehashing the eulogy and the flowers and what the widow was wearing and the priest’s pronunciation of “chalice” and the entire funeral that your husband just attended, right there with you?! Come on. Give the guy a break. Unless, of course, you want a rehash of the early Sunday game while you’re watching the Oscars. I’m not saying your husband should be given a free pass to not listen to you. I’m saying that no human (man, woman or child) can be expected to listen all the time to everything. As they say, choose your battles.

Well, shippers, I guess that’s it! If we can get through November and December with all of our fingers and toes intact, who knows what wonder and happiness the New Year and January will bring? I’m looking forward to it all! I do love the holidays (and the leaf canons). Hang in there shippers, keep your dive-to-surface ratio steady at one, and, as always, fair winds and following seas to ya!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

...on Dildos and Broken Dicks (orig. 11/05/09) <---Original Prudie Questions Can Be Found There

Hey there shippers! How the hell are ya on this fine, fine Prudie Day?! All here is well enough, I suppose, and I know that the world won’t fall off its axis, but, I am a bit disturbed by something that has nothing to do with the Prudie Letters. I know, I know, I’m not here to bitch about anything else. And, too, since I know that you come for the letters, I’m going to address them first. But then, after I’m done with them, I’m going to answer a bonus letter, too, if I may? If I play my cards right, it might give you some insight into my worked up state. But that comes last as it wouldn’t be fair otherwise. First up, to the letters!

LW#1: Prudie, I’m 16-years-old and wanting to buy a vibrator. I’d like to talk to my mom about this. We have a close relationship and can talk about anything, but I’m afraid that she’ll be uncomfortable and feel awkward about this particular subject. I’ve tried talking to a friend, but she was repulsed by the idea. What should I do? Unfortunately, in this case, you are the best judge of how your mother will react. And if you’re concerned about her reaction, you’re probably correctly reading her. But, at the same time, if she’s always been there for you, openly and honestly, even though the conversation may make her uncomfortable, it may be one she’d be honored to have with you, discomfort be damned! And, part of being a kiddo to a good parent is being able to be open and honest and never fear undue reproach. Ultimately, you have to decide which is more important to you emotionally: having the conversation with your mom, or, taking the plunge solo. Either way, in this case, it sounds like things will work out. Prudie’s correct in that masturbation is pretty much point and click. You’ll absolutely figure it out. That much, I promise. The trick is the emotional part. And your mom may be able to help you navigate that better than anyone else. Even if you don’t talk to her before, perhaps later it’s something you can bring up. Leave open that option, but, listen to yourself on this one. You’re the best judge of what to do next.

LW#2: Prudie, I’m a woman who’s probably a bit too over-worried about all things, but specifically regarding my upcoming nuptials and subsequent life with a man who’s much older than I am (I always tell people our age difference because it’s vitally important to my story). My soucis de la journée, though, is his fertility. He had an infection on his testicles that may have rendered him infertile. Before we get married, I’d like to know exactly how many little guys he’s shooting, how potent they are, how long they’ll be there and if they’re genetically superior to those at the sperm bank. I mean, it’s not like I won’t marry him or anything, you know, if he’s shooting blanks, but I keep my calendar updated, to the minute, for about five years out. Every detail has to be perfect and I don’t know if I can stand the not knowing. Please help me justify trooping him down to the sperm clinic to see I’m going to need to schedule appointments at the adoption agency and sperm donor center in 18 to 21 months--I don’t have too many open appointments left for that timeframe and we need to get moving! Whoa there, Little Miss Holy Batshit Crazy Woman! Calm your jets for a sec. Have you ever heard of living in the moment? I agree you can’t live your entire life in the moment. You have to plan for retirement at some point. And it’s nice to have a down payment on a house before buying. Those things do take a little planning. But you’re looking way too far ahead here (at least if you’re being honest and you’d marry this guy even if he is sterile). Listen, here’s how it works: when (and only when) you’re ready to start a family, you have sex without birth control. You do this for awhile and see what happens. If you get pregnant, holy shit, problem solved (at least for you--truth is, I’m not sure that your husband and child may not be living in ‘schedule hell’ for the rest of their lives, but, sadly, they didn’t write in to ask for advice). If you don’t get pregnant, then, and only then, should you worry. Hell, you might be the problem! What if you’re infertile and he’s not? Wouldn’t that just put your panties in a twist? Oh my, appointments at the OB, appointments at the alternative medicine doc... (sigh).

LW#3: Dear Prudie, I’m 27. When I was 14, I “severed ties” with my dad. That’s a euphemism for treating him like shit, threatening to call the cops on him, trying to injure his wife and baby, screaming, yelling, peeing on his furniture and just generally making a complete and total asshole of myself. But, now that I’m older and getting married, I’d like to have him back in my life. What can I do? Hey chicky, I have two portions of advice for you. The first is to go slow. Look at the letter above. This thing can’t be put on a schedule. Prudie has some wonderful advice for you and I think you should follow it. But (and here’s the second part), what kind of insensitive, crazy, lunatic bitch do you think you are by asking this man and his family to your fucking wedding after having not been in touch with him all this time? Like, “Hey dad, sorry about the shit earlier, but, you know, could you come to my wedding?” Holy fuck?! How about you slow the fuck down and meet on his terms, not yours, on his turf, not your? How about you express your unbelievable, extreme, gut-wrenching sorrow over how you treated them? Yes, you were young and you should not be held completely accountable. I agree. Your mom seems to have played some crazy nut-job role and your dad should come to understand that, but, it’s not like he’s going to just say, “Hey, sweetie, so glad to have you back! Let’s go to your wedding!” It’s going to take years, not days. It’s going to take tears and sorrow and pain. And if you’re not willing to admit to yourself that the effort is going to be extremely hard, if you’re thinking you can just show up, invite him to a wedding and all will be okay, well, you’re well on your way to reaching your mom’s level of craziness. And he can see that. Your wedding is not the place for a family reconciliation, idiot. This isn’t about you. It’s about the two of you. And your wedding ain’t that.

LW#4: Prudie, I’m a woman whose work is incredible. Not only that, it’s so good, the increased revenue for the firm that I work for is clearly measurable and has increased the workload of others! Isn’t that great? In terms of the bottom line, I’m a goddess. My problem is with my male co-worker, who, for obvious reasons (you know, because he’s lazy), hates me. He leaves stinky socks in our shared bathroom and even leaves the seat up as a “final protest” to my being there. What can I do? Holy fucking batshit on the windshield of your brain, you fucking vapid idiot! How about you put down the goddamned seat?! Is your back hurting you? Are you a double amputee (arms)? Do you put the seat up for him when you’re done, you double-standard, crazed, lunatic freak? You may be good at your job, but you’re a fucking idiot as a human and that usually doesn’t go over well in the workplace. Not for long. If I were you, I’d spend less time gloating and more time trying to be a fellow human being.

Bonus LW: Prudie, I live in Maine. I was full of hope and happiness and wonder that we, Mainers, would be the first voting population to allow gays and lesbians to marry. And things were absolutely heading that way! But, sadly, over the last several months, literally tens (if not hundreds) of millions of dollars have poured into the state from outside, funding sickening advertising that claimed things like “voting for gay marriage means they’ll teach kindergartner’s about anal sex.” Seriously! That’s a paraphrase, but not an exaggeration. Prudie, this is 2009. When will people get over thinking that they should be allowed to choose how other people live? I’m sorry, Mainer. I really am. I, too, hoped that at least one state's electorate would allow for gay marriage. And though you didn’t say it, I know good and damned well it was the Bible-thumping, Nazi, righteous, fuckstains out there in full force over the last few weeks. Just like in California. Fucking assholes. What a shame, too, and ironic, in that they want all the rights of practicing their religion, tax-free, with no limitations, but, you know, if someone is different than them, or if someone lives in a way that they can cherry pick a verse from Leviticus and use it to condemn them, they will. I can't say that I'm surprised by this. It’s not new. But it does hit me hard each time this happens, because it's just devastating, actually, the irony and ignorance and arrogance of these fucking asshats. But hold up your head, Mainer. Even if it didn’t happen on Tuesday, it will. Kids today are more and more tolerant of homosexuals. Eventually these asshat idiots will be the ones in the minority. It’s actually closer than it feels. And when that day comes, oh sweet baby Jesus in swaddling clothes, they’d better hope like hell that those of us who believe in true equality won’t vote to ban religion outright. Because, you know, when we’re in the majority, what’s to stop us enforcing our will on them?


Well shippers, that about wraps it up for another week. I’m off to a swim call in the lagoon. We throw a cargo net down the side of the sub and dive in from the turtle back. Then we can use the net to climb back aboard. It’s great fun and good exercise, and, too, I hope to get a visit from my bestest diving buddy while there! And that’s always a treat. So, ‘til next week shippers, keep your dive-to-surface ratio at one, and fair winds and following seas.