Bossy sister turns a good deed into a bad situation
DEAR ABBY: My older sister moved in with me after she was placed on furlough because of the pandemic. I was resistant to her moving in because she likes to run the show, she has taken financial advantage of every family member, never admits she’s wrong, and I was worried she’d take over. But I wanted to help her save money, so I said yes.
Now it’s like I’m walking on eggshells. Every time I make a simple request, she accuses me of trying to act like her mother! After six months she asked if I’d prefer she move in with our parents, and I said yes. Now she’s upset, and my parents are begging me to let her stay because they don’t want to deal with her. I just want my peace back. What should I do? — TIRED LITTLE SISTER
DEAR TIRED: I’ll tell you what NOT to do. Do not relent. She asked if you’d prefer she move in with your parents, and you answered her honestly. Set a date for her to be out and stick to it. It will save your sanity.
DEAR ABBY: I’m a very hands-on person, recently retired, and I would like to do volunteer work. Sounds simple, right? Well, it seems no one needs volunteers. I have been looking for something, preferably ecological in nature, for two years. But whenever I inquire, I’m flooded with appeals for money. I was hoping you might give me some more ideas. — BROKE BUT AVAILABLE
DEAR BROKE: You describe yourself as hands-on with an interest in things that are ecological. Because your efforts are not needed at the organizations you contacted, modify your search.
Would you be interested in helping to keep your neighborhood clean and free of trash, starting a vegetable garden to feed the needy, performing yard and gardening chores for elderly members of your community who can no longer do it themselves? How about teaching a class in ecology at a community center?
If that is not to your liking, would you deliver meals to shut-ins for a while? An animal hospital or pet rescue group may be able to use a willing hand in exercising the animals in their care. The options are there. Sample them until you find something to your liking.
DEAR ABBY: I am a 40-something woman and have been with my partner for four years. I am the mother of three boys; he’s a father of two girls. We live at my house.
Whenever his youngest comes to visit (she’s 16), she insists on his every second of attention. He eats it up. It’s so frustrating. They both ignore the fact that I am here. It’s very upsetting and, I don’t think it’s normal. What about you? — MIFFED IN MICHIGAN
DEAR MIFFED: Have you discussed this with your partner? I don’t know how often the girl comes to visit, but clearly she is starved for her father’s attention. I don’t think you should begrudge it unless her visits last for an extended period. Of course, your partner and his daughter should be respectful and not treat you like an old piece of furniture or a servant, but you might be less upset if you use some of that time to pursue interests or relationships of your own.
Dear Abby is written by Abigail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips. Contact Dear Abby at www.DearAbby.com or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.
Singer Chaka Khan is 68. Actress Amanda Plummer is 64. Actress Catherine Keener is 62. Actress Hope Davis is 57. Actor Richard Grieco is 56. Rock singer-musician Damon Albarn (Blur) is 53. Bandleader Reggie Watts (“The Late Late Show With James Corden”) is 49. Actor Randall Park (“Fresh Off the Boat”) is 47. Actress Michelle Monaghan is 45. Actress Keri Russell is 45. Country singer Paul Martin (Marshall Dyllon) is 43. NBA point guard Kyrie Irving is 29.
Let your creativity flow this year, and you’ll come up with something new and exciting. Invent fresh ways to socialize, and share with people who are as innovative and conscientious as you. Put your heart and soul into improving relationships and taking on a challenge.
ARIES (March 21-April 19) — Attend a virtual networking event that interests you. Anger will set in if you sit back instead of taking action. It’s up to you to do your part if you want to make a difference.
TAURUS (April 20-May 20) — Make a positive change at home. Be willing to do the work yourself, and you’ll feel good about your accomplishment. Speak up about matters that concern you, and resolve issues swiftly.
GEMINI (May 21-June 20) — Be careful not to lead someone on. Honesty will help you maintain a good rapport with others without jeopardizing your reputation or your integrity. Learn the lessons of experience.
CANCER (June 21-July 22) — Consider what you are trying to achieve, and gather the information that will help you reach your goal. Don’t jeopardize your health in order to advance. Know when to say no.
LEO (July 23-Aug. 22) — Improve your life, looks and relationships with others. Concentrate on being the best you can be. Offer kindness, support and understanding to the people around you. Romance looks promising.
VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22) — You’ll get help from people who share your concerns. Speak up and do your best to make a difference. Anger will solve nothing, but physically taking responsibility will pay off.
LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 23) — Set out on a pilgrimage that will lead to valuable information. Educational pursuits will open your mind to all sorts of exciting possibilities. Share something special with a loved one.
SCORPIO (Oct. 24-Nov. 22) — Uncertainty will hold you back. Concentrate on what’s required to reach your destination and put everything in place. A minimalist lifestyle is encouraged if you want to avoid setbacks.
SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 23-Dec. 21) — Don’t be fooled by someone trying to part you from your hard-earned cash. Set ground rules at home or with anyone you share expenses with.
CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19) — Refuse to take chances with your health. Make adjustments to the way you live or how you handle your money to ease stress and foster better decisions.
AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 19) — Put your energy where it counts, and you’ll get good results. Home improvements will encourage you to take better care of yourself and those you love. Don’t get angry; let go of the past and begin again.
PISCES (Feb. 20-March 20) — Concentrate on creative ideas and living life your way. Don’t get stuck in a rut when change is necessary. Reach out to someone you enjoy collaborating with.
NEWS OF THE WEIRD
By Chuck Sheppard
What’s in a Name? Before social distancing and masks became the world’s norm, CBS News reported on Jan. 12, Paul O’Sullivan of Baltimore was noodling around on Facebook one night, searching for other Paul O’Sullivans. Several of those he found accepted his friend request, which was when he noticed that some were musicians, as he was. Baltimore Paul, as he’s known, reached out to others, and eventually he and three others formed the Paul O’Sullivan Band. Manchester Paul plays bass; Pennsylvania Paul is the percussionist; and Baltimore Paul and Rotterdam Paul play guitar and sing. They recorded a single at the beginning of 2020, but when COVID hit, they thought it was a great opportunity to make a whole album. “It feels great to be able to contact people on the other side of the world when you’re in lockdown because you don’t feel alone at the moment,” commented Rotterdam Paul. “If you learn to play an instrument, it can help you through some dark times,” said Manchester Paul.