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.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

...on Yard Sex, Senility, Lying and Drama (10/28/2010) <---Original Prudie Letters Can Be Found There

Hey hidey ho, Shippers! How the hell are ya on this fine, fine Prudie Day? I hope that all’s well, that it’s a bright, shiny, happy day, and, that you enjoyed today’s letters! I know that I did! I’m glad because, with the way they’ve been lately, I was thinking I was going to have to spice things up a bit by offering something like, “So, corporal punishment of your kids? Yes or no?”, but, now I can save that topic for a later edition, you know, in case it’s needed. That said, let’s get crackin’ on these letters, shall we?

LW#1: Dear Prudie. I’m a happy-go-lucky 20-something in a two year relationship with the “most beautiful, fascinating woman I've ever met.” We’re talking about getting married, and I couldn’t be happier! Well, except for one little problem that’s sort of snowballed into a moral dilemma (you know, that old chestnut). My girlfriend’s parents are very traditionally religious and they really, really do not believe in premarital sex. We recently went on vacation with them (I slept in a separate room from my girlfriend, of course), but, one night my girlfriend talked me into having sex with her in the back yard (she’s got a thing for outdoor sex). The next morning, my girlfriend’s grandma insisted she’d seen two people in the back yard having sex, but, since she’s been bordering on senility for quite awhile now, no one believed her! And it looks like her insistence on what she saw (boy, does she continue to insist--over and over and over) will end up being the catalyst for the family deciding to put her in a home. My girlfriend and I would like to come forward, but are worried about that our relationship will suffer due to her parents’ anger over the backyard tryst. What should we do? Signed, Night Weenie

Dear Whipped But Good! First off, let me set you straight on something right up front you little shit! Your girlfriend didn’t “talk you into” sex in the back yard. You whipped it out, brother! You stuck it in! You need to learn to take responsibility for your actions (and she for hers). Blaming your girlfriend for your actions is pussy-boy behavior, plain and simple! That personal responsibility thing? I hope you wrote that down as you’ll see it again and again and again. Next up, I don’t care how young or stupid you are, it is morally reprehensible that you would even consider not telling her parents! Are you fucking kidding me?! Forget grandma going into a home--that might be the best place for her anyway (and hopefully she’d never be put there if it wasn’t, and hopefully, too, that decision would be based on many appropriate criteria and indicators, not just this one)--and think about the fact that your failure to speak up is making her look like senile! A woman who knows she’s right and you’re letting her take the fall?! For a little night sex?! That’s like being gay and passing anti-gay legislation in order to make sure the focus is off of you! It’s like condemning a cheating politician while you’ve got interns under your own desk! Allowing grandma to take the fall for your actions is the very height of hypocrisy and moral bankruptcy. I wouldn’t want you as a son-in-law, either! Holy shit! Look, all of my mean language aside, I’m going to give you some very practical advice: if you don’t have the balls to talk to your girlfriend’s family, and she can’t do it, either, what makes you think your marriage is going to be any different? Either you are an adult, capable of making your own decisions, on your own terms, or you are not. And if you’re not, you need to quit pretending that you are. Right now? I see a couple of scared little kids who aren’t mature enough to even be in a sexual relationship, much less considering marriage. Let’s hope that you grow the fuck up before grandma is shuffled off to Serenity Acres and thrown on the pile of medically-induced calmness that “lives” there.

LW#2: Dear Prudie. My husband and I are celebrating our 15th wedding anniversary by renewing our vows because a sow bitch of a woman posing as my mom’s best friend ruined our actual wedding and I want to replace those memories with happier ones. See, six months after our original wedding, my family found out that my dad and my mom’s supposed best friend had been having an affair. Since the “best friend” was our informal wedding planner, even participating in the wedding by screeching some out of tune song or other, the whole event’s been ruined for all of us. My mom wants me to throw things away from the wedding that remind her of her ex-BFF, and I can’t even watch the wedding video because it makes me weep. My question is, when people ask why my husband and I are renewing our vows, what should I tell them? I don’t want to spill the whole sordid story (much), but, that is the reason? Signed, No One’s Going To Fuck Up My Wedding This Time

Dear OMFG Helicopter! You are truly a fucking psycho hose beast, drama queen of the first order, aren’t you?! I don’t know if your husband qualifies for that designation, too, but you’re mom certainly does (some things just run in the family)! First off, you found out about this six fucking months after your wedding, yet, you’ve chosen to go back and poison an event that I presume was perfect in your mind prior to learning of this truly terribly tragic and completely uncommon news? Give me a fucking break. You love drama, don’t you? You live for it, actually! And now you’re looking for drama in your vow renewal! A vow renewal and you want the drama! “OMG, Prudie, what will I do if I just happen to slip up and tell someone why we’re renewing our vows?” “OMG, Prudie, what if someone actually asks me why we’re doing it? What can I possibly tell them?” Listen up, Cinderella, no one gives a flying fuck except you and your mom. You say, “Because it’s a special anniversary and we wanted to celebrate it in a special way.” That’s it. But that’s not nearly good enough for you two crazies, is it? Oh hell no! You want to bring down the drama, don’t’cha? And your mom?! What the hell is up her ass? She’s forgiven your father, but this woman who magically made your father’s dick hard using, what, dark magic and witchcraft, is now so poisonous a presence that 15 years after the fact she’s still affecting your lives? Let me tell you something: you and your mom (not the ex-friend) are perpetuating an evil, psycho bitch hatchet job on your family’s lives and if I was your husband, I’d take this time to go to the courthouse to renew my singlehood, not my vows. Get another hobby, you nut job.

LW#3: Dear Prudie. Through no fault of my own (it was actually a boss’s mistake), I found out that a co-worker of mine makes $6,000 more per year than I do. We do the same job, I have more industry experience, industry specific certifications and a bachelor’s degree. She has a master’s degree only and sucks at her job. And smells bad, too! Yeah, that’s the ticket! I’m pissed and feel like I’ve been kicked in the face. What should I do? Signed, Dumber than Dirt

Dear Idiot. You are an idiot. First off, you need to recognize that what you value in your job and what your bosses value in your job is obviously not the same thing. Feel kicked in the face all you want, but, fact is, your anger and seething rage is unfounded (especially when aimed at your coworker, which, though you didn’t say it, is obvious). Your coworker applied for a job, got it, and takes home the salary that she was offered to do that job. You comparing your credentials to hers is a fool’s errand because you don’t know why your bosses are paying her more (though you clearly think you have it all figured out why they shouldn’t be, don’t you? And, while we’re on the subject, just in case you don’t know how it works, one who has a Master’s Degree also owns a Bachelor’s. Just sayin’.). Let me repeat the important phrase. You don’t know why they’re paying her more. So, it’s sort of obvious who you need to talk to, eh? And, to me, it’s obvious who you should be angry at, too (if you absolutely must be angry, which, frankly, is just not appropriate in this situation). That would be your bosses and yourself, respectively. Tell your bosses what you found, and how you found it (that detail is important), and ask if there’s anything you can do to increase your pay. Your coworker? You don’t mention her! You talk in generalities. Your coworker’s just doing her job. Leave her the fuck out of this, understand? She’s an innocent. And if you fuck things up for her due to your unhappiness with your lot in life (which, apparently you were all happy and satisfied with prior to your discovery), may you die six thousand tiny little deaths per year for the rest of your spiteful and petty professional life.

LW#4: Dear Prudie, I’ve got an iron stomach and steel constitution. I’m like the freakin’ paragon of health! Yet, the last two times I’ve eaten at the house of a particular couple, I’ve gotten terrible food poisoning. I’m talking bad ju-ju! So, I’ll never again eat food they’ve prepared or touched. Problem is that I enjoy their company and they enjoy cooking and they are starting to wonder why I don’t want to come over. What should I say to them? Signed, Won’t Eat Their Sushi

Dear Iron Man. I hate to ask this (well, no I don’t), but, is it possible they’re poisoning you? I mean, are you rich and are they in your will? Might they be the beneficiaries of a life insurance policy on you that you aren’t aware of? Those possibilities aside, I think you have to just say to them, “Look guys, I’m really sorry, but, the last two times I’ve have dinner at your place, I’ve gotten really sick. Not just kind of sick, but really sick! And, seeing that I’m never sick (ever!), I have to conclude that I’m allergic to something in your kitchen. So, I’m happy to meet for dinner, or to have you over to my place, but, I’m sorry, but, I just can’t risk going through that again.” Now, of course, ideally, you would have called them after the first bout and ask them, politely, if they’d gotten sick because you’d retched all night and were trying to eliminate potential causes. Then, if you’d repeated it a second time, that would have made your final declaration of not eating at their place more palatable (no pun intended). But, since you didn’t do that, you’ve just got to approach them cold. Be apologetic but firm. Unless they got sick, too, I doubt it was due to spoiled or bad food or poor preparation habits, and rather due to some esoteric ingredient that they’re used to cooking with that your body doesn’t process well. By approaching them from that vein, instead of from a place that insinuates that they’re unclean, roach poachers (even though they may be), I think you’ll get better results. Good luck (and maybe consider hiring a taster for when they’re around!).

Well, Shippers, that about does it for me. I’ve recently been tipped off that a time traveler’s been caught on a film from the 1920s, speaking on her cell phone ( I will spend the rest of the day investigating that possibility, probably by using my own time machine to go back to that exact date to see if I can spy the woman for myself. Of course, I’m pretty sure it’s a hoax, because, as we all know, when you travel through time, you lose your clothes and anything you’re carrying, so, she couldn’t really have had a cell phone... ;-) Fair winds and following seas to ya, Shippers!


  1. Follow the links in the story. There's also "first person ever caught on film", and following THAT link, and even older "first person ever caught on film", by Daguerro himself.

    If someone I knew renewed vows while the kids were still in middle school or younger, I'd wonder what caused them almost to break up so badly that they felt the need to "get married" all over again.

  2. Right on, as always, Smag. I think you let LW#4 off to easy, though. Food poisoning, IMHO, is serious business that REQUIRES people to act like adults and get on the phone to discover the source. True story: when I was in college I studied abroad and lived in a dorm with a shared kitchen. Homegirl down the hall has some bad canned goods and gets botulism. Yes, BOTULISM. She's in the hospital for weeks. Meanwhile, the rest of us have no idea where Fiona's gone, but we're using the same sponge she used to clean up after the can that exploded onto the counter to wash our dishes. For the next two weeks, all of us wind up in various stages of Really Fucking Sick (which, shockingly, we find out later only amounts to extremely mild, barely-exposed-at-all cases of botulism... I don't ever want to know what a "medium" case of botulism feels like). Anyway, does anyone get together and talk about this? Of course not... we're all embarassed and sick and too cool to talk about how much we've barfed. At some point, days later, a health inspector sent by Fiona's hospital shows up, gives us the botulism news, and then is shocked that we've all been sick but haven't reported it to anyone. Yes, he probably should have showed up days earlier, but it was our bad, too.

    If you've eaten somewhere and gotten sick, you have an OBLIGATION to tell whoever it is that fed you. You have no idea who's going to eat there after you... an elderly person, a pregnant lady, an infant ... and so if there's a problem, it's on your head just as much as the eating establishment's to make damn sure it gets fixed. They might have NO IDEA that their eggs are expired, or their meat is bad, or that the sponge they're using is contaminated with the nasties, and unless you tell them, it might be days or weeks more until they figure it out. And by then, who knows how many other people have suffered.

    But maybe I'm just paranoid. You tend to get a little jittery about these things after a case of the botulism.

  3. Hello Smaggles,

    What is with weddings and the other women these past couple of weeks? Good responses, as I would expect. Have a great Halloween and say hi to the Great Pumpkin for me!

  4. asking for a &quot;friend&quot;October 28, 2010 at 11:35 AM

    #1 - they guy and girl here shouldn't say anything but what they should do is find where granny will be placed in and then do the deed outside that window 2! :).

    #2 - invite the wedding planner to the bachelorette party like in last weeks' questions! :).

    #3 - simple solution - ask co-worker among others out 4 a happy hour and then when it is time to pay, say loudly "Co-worker has 6,000 reasons 2 get this bill!" :).

    #4 - one time I went to a friend's house and had 8 butter-fucker shots. next day my stomach hurt - whose fault? :).

    have a great weekend and look at that film like the Zapruder film! :).

  5. LW#1 better hope that his girlfriend's parents don't ever start to like him. 'Cause then he's on the road to Dumpsville while she finds some other guy to annoy her parents with.

  6. Hail, SB1!

    We seem more or less on the same page, although I might contend that women can on occasion be more than 3/4 responsible for an act of Heterosexual Activity. Is it Affirmative of Female Sexuality to imply that LW1 is more or less automatically equally to blame? Just because [I omit a much better pun than any of the Prudecutor's about your acknowledged prowess] doesn't mean that no man was ever persuaded against his inclination - and there's a nice, long list of ex-politicians that will back up my lack of personal experience. I don't mean to give LW1 a pass, but he seems not in the least put out about the separate bedrooms. It's a bit like the L2 situation. Yes, he bears some responsibility and was less than an ideal guest and then a good deal beyond. But he's not their daughter, who has the long-running conflict and the far more vested interest in pushing their buttons. Accordingly, once the truth comes out, I expect the parents to blame him and forgive their precious little angel, just as LW2's mother forgave her father and demanded that everyone excommunicate the slore.

    Does LW2's husband ever have any independent reactions to anything? And if he were polled, with which of her/her mother's (the two are barely if at all distinguishable) actions or reactions would he care to associate himself? Does she know? care? assume? What a blurry letter.

    Excellently managed on the seething for weeks.

  7. Ahoy, Smagboy! Good work as usual.

    I'm actually kind of surprised that LW1 and his girlfriend don't WANT to fess up. The idea that they OBVIOUSLY slept in separate beds for the sake of her parents but then threw caution to the wind and had sex on the lawn just screamed immature passive-agressiveness to me. ("You don't want us to have sex, but if you only knew what we did last ni-ight....") You don't have to graphically describe every position (or location, apparently) in which you've premarially rocked each others' worlds, but either keep your hands to yourselves around them or don't. And for heaven's sake, if you get CAUGHT doing it (on their property no less), just grow up and admit it. I thought this episode was more likely to end with Girlfriend screaming "That's right, Daddy - we did it! We did it right THERE, where Mom has her book club meetings! With our clothes off and everything! And it was DIRTY!!!"

  8. Ah Smag! Once again, you are more charitable than I. I contend that this is the Last Straw in a long-term plan to getting Granny safely warehoused so that the inheritance can be spent without her supervision.

    Note that the LW has been told (because I doubt he's been around her that much) that Granny is already "a bit senile". The foundation has been laid, and it was going on long before the LW came on the scene. The canoodling couple is not at fault here. I think her parents know darned well what they were getting up to.

    Of course, I was much cruder about all that in the SHADDAP!s.

  9. "Friend", I love your #3 answer!

  10. Creepy, Cooky, Smaggy, Ooky:

    At last I have resurfaced from my Pumpkin Head Factory! Free at last... till the Christmas orders come in, that is.

    I concur with CoolOne, except for the #1 answer. I don't "LOL" often at posts, but that did it. Because now I'm overflowing with "Nightmare at 10 Feet" imagery and dialogue.

    "There's a couple having sex on the wing!"

    ..Grandma yanks down the shade, composes herself, reaches for the shade again, withdraws, then finally braces herself and YANKS it back up...


    Oh, and an LOL for Miss Scarlet's scenario, too. "...And it was DIRTY!" heh heh heh

    LW2- I'd been led to believe that vow renewals were for "big" anniversaries and/or overly romantic, sentimental couples. Not "In a fit of rage, we renewed our vows! TAKE THAT, BITCH! PWNED! PWNED!"

    I am WAY out of the loop for modern marriages, I guess.

    LW3 - I just assume that everyone makes the same salary as I do. I mean, for the same job, that is. Unless they've been there longer. As long as I have cash for Legos, comics, DVDs and way too much Disney merch (the last item will pass, in time)

    LW4 - Ack! Guilty! Guilty of getting uber-sick and not calling the place that I *suspected* of having sold me the offensive food. But at the time that meat-or-vegetable matter was coming out BOTH ends, I wasn't composing the script for my phonecall. In the aftermath, I just quietly didn't buy food from there anymore. {{sigh}} To this day I don't know how or whence it occurred. I don't even know what I had! (my guess is salmonella, but again - Don't Know)

    How's that for health denial? When it comes to my health, I'm like my mom: If it ain't broke, don't fix it, and if it's broke, ignore it and hope it goes away. You do NOT want to know how large my fibroid got before I finally had to have it removed.

  11. herdThinner: If the, um, lower product is bright green, it's time to worry. Unless of course, you've had copious amounts of something like spinach or of Grape Gatorade (which for some reason is blue in the bottle, not purple.)

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