DEAR MISS LONELYHEARTS: I took my girlfriend to a movie last week and she hated it because it wasn't a stupid comedy like she prefers. In the middle of the fight action, she said, "This movie is too violent. I want to leave right now!" I said, "I paid for this movie and I want to see the end!" She said loud enough for other people to hear, "Well, I'm leaving now! It's cold and you need to give me a ride home." I reached into my pocket, handed her bus fare and said, "Take the bus." The guys behind us laughed.
Now she won't talk to me and she's blocked me every way she can. She's being stubborn and stupid. I'm in Grade 12. We don't go to the same high school, so the only way I could approach her would be to drive to her school and try to find her and talk some sense into her, but would that be stalking? Could I get in trouble? -- Wanting Her Back, South End
Dear Wanting: You acted like a doofus not a date. You took her to a guy's movie, it got too violent and she wanted out. Then you humiliated her by handing her a bus ticket in front of some smirking guys. On top of that, she had to go home alone in the cold and dark by herself -- not safe on two counts in the winter.
Buddy, you blew it big time, and going to her school would only make it worse. It would be invasive to show up in her school's hallways and feel like harassment. It's not like hiding behind a bush, but it is following her -- a form of stalking. Don't do it! She has shown you strongly she doesn't want contact, so let her be. She's finished with the relationship and the door is closed on her side. That's all it takes -- one side to veto.
Your only hope is to write her a sweet, old-fashioned apology letter, mail it properly with a stamp (don't drop it off at her house) and hope she won't rip it up when it comes out of the mailbox. Personal letters are so rare these days it will be a curiosity, and chances are good she'll at least look at it.
Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: I've had too much to drink today, OK, every day, but I drink vodka so people can't tell. My mother found some bottles in my room and poured them down the sink. I'm 31, for God's sake, and I hold down a full-time job and support both of us. Isn't this my business? I might agree not to drink at home anymore, but isn't that safer than driving my car to and from a bar? My job is very stressful and I need to relax. -- Give Me a Break, Elmwood
Dear Give Me a Break: Your mother is right. You're always at it, and now you're drinking alone at home. You have a problem and it's become her problem since you live under the same roof. You may pay the rent but that doesn't mean she has to repay you by keeping quiet about your growing alcohol problem. Think she's wrong about it? Call the Addictions Foundation of Manitoba (204-944-6200) for an appointment and an assessment. In the end, this is all about you. Get help for yourself before you lose your job. You should be aware people who drink vodka smell like vodka to their co-workers and bosses.
Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: I'm a retired physician, replying to the spitting letter. Even with a sinus infection, there is no justification for public spitting, but when I was in medical school in the 1950s, the professor of medicine said that infants and savages swallowed their sputum and post-nasal drip, and civilized people hawked it out on the sidewalk. -- Dr. Who, Winnipeg
Dear Dr. Who: Thanks for your perspective. No doubt the medical students, even at that time, looked up in shock after this remark. In the '50s, "hawking" mucous out on the sidewalk was uncommon, especially in public, and considered very low-class behaviour. I remember seeing the odd guy do it on occasion downtown when I was a child, and my mother remarking on how crude it was.
Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: I left my cigarettes at my girlfriend's house and her husband found half a pack. He doesn't smoke that brand. He used to smoke that brand and went back to his old brand. She lied and said they must be some of his old cigarettes, but he wasn't convinced. He is not a nice man and much bigger than I am, with powerful friends. -- Nervously Smoking, Winnipeg
Dear Nervous: How about finding a smoking girlfriend who isn't taken and you can leave your smokes anywhere you want. You have proved you're not cut out for the cheating game because you don't have a good memory and don't take care of details. On top of that, you chose a woman who has a big husband who can hurt you and has even bigger and nastier friends. Frankly, you don't have the survival instincts for the cheating world.
Please send your questions or comments c/o firstname.lastname@example.org or mail letters to Miss Lonelyhearts c/o Winnipeg Free Press, 1355 Mountain Ave., Winnipeg, MB, R2X 3B6