Annie's Mailbox: Lost for an Answer
Dear Annie: I am a male, over 60, gray, balding and noticeably overweight. Because of back problems, I choose to wear suspenders instead of a belt. So, why is it that women of all ages think it's OK to snap my suspenders, or at least express a desire to do so? Most recently, it was a younger woman on the staff of a hospital ER while I was waiting for my wife to be treated.
I'm fairly certain that if I were to snap their bra straps, they would slap my face and call the police, and rightly so. Why, then, do these ladies believe they have a right to put their hands on me? -- Lost for an Answer
Dear Lost: We have no clue why anyone, male or female, would think it is OK to treat your suspenders as though they were a child's toy to play with. You likely appear to others as jocular and friendly, which makes them treat you as though you are familiar and accessible -- their favorite uncle. And there may be something about suspenders that encourages people to touch them. But this doesn't excuse their behavior.
If someone approaches you a little too closely, feel free to back away or ask them to keep their hands to themselves. Another option, of course, is to cover the suspenders with a jacket or sweater. And, readers, please keep your hands off the merchandise.
Dear Annie: I read the letter from "Hurting for My Brother-in-Law." She said her brother-in-law's wife died, and her three sons from a previous marriage put her first husband's name on the headstone. I can understand their reasons.
My mother remarried when I was 17, and she died 15 months later. Her second husband asked my permission not to use my father's name on the headstone. It seemed reasonable, so I agreed. The headstone only shows her maiden name and that of her second husband.
Years passed, and I had only minimal contact with my stepfather, who died a long time ago. My grown children never knew him. They worry they will be unable to find their grandmother's burial plot because they don't easily recall my stepfather's last name. I phoned the cemetery and requested that they cross-reference Mom's married name with my maiden name (my father's name), but they refused.
In years to come, my children's descendents may wish to know where their grandmother is buried, but her second husband of one year will not be remembered. -- G.
Dear G.: You should make certain that your papers include your mother's married name so that future generations will have a record of it and can locate her gravesite. You also might find out from the cemetery whether you can add anything to the headstone or who can give you the authority to do so -- perhaps your stepfather's children, who may not have any objection to your adding your father's name.
This Classic Annie's Mailbox column was originally published in 2015. To find out more about Classic Annie's Mailbox and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit Creators Syndicate at www.creators.com.