Annie's Mailbox: Can't Stand the Sight of Them
Dear Annie: A couple of years ago, my husband and I introduced ourselves to our new neighbor. We helped her catch her dog when it took off down the street and lent her our cellphone when her dog locked her out of the car. We waved hello and goodbye. She told us that her husband was in the service. He came home and before we knew it, he was moving out.
The problem is, this woman is now coming home in the wee hours of the morning, sometimes as late as 5 a.m. She often returns slightly drunk and with some random guy. They slam the car doors and beep the horn multiple times trying to lock the car, laughing and talking loudly out in the road. They wake us up all the time.
My husband asked her nicely one day to please use the lock inside the car door instead of using the key fob, which beeps. Well, now when we're outside, she will beep the car horn for no reason. Her new, live-in boyfriend is a police officer in a neighboring town, and he likes to beep the horn late at night.
What do you do with a bully cop? How do you complain to the police who usually protect their own? We worry that if we report him, then our kids will be harassed and pulled over by his friends. What can we do? -- Can't Stand the Sight of Them
Dear Can't: This immature officer needs to be reported and you should be able to do so anonymously so he cannot be certain who registered the complaint. (We suspect plenty of neighbors are as annoyed as you are by the constant horn beeping.) And in the meantime, stop reacting. These childish people enjoy getting a rise out of you. Ignore the beeping. Wave hello when you see them. Be as friendly as you were before. Wear earplugs at night. Give them no reason to derive satisfaction from taunting you. We hope they grow up soon.
Dear Annie: How do you tell someone that the way she chews gum is exasperating? She chews with her mouth open and makes horrible chomping, slurping noises. -- Feeling Annoyed
Dear Annoyed: Theses types of problems are never easy. You have to be willing to tell your friend that her gum chewing is difficult to witness because of the noise and open-mouth visuals. If you can say that nicely, she may try to alter her behavior; however, it is probably ingrained and will take repeated reminders. Your other options are to avoid her when she's chewing gum or tolerate the annoyance because you value enough other things about her to make up for it.
Ann Landers once printed a little ditty on the subject, which has often been credited to Ogden Nash:
The gum-chewing student
And the cud-chewing cow
Look quite alike, but they're different somehow.
And what is the difference?
I see it all now,
It's the intelligent look
On the face of the cow.
"Annie's Mailbox" is written by Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar. This column was originally published in 2016. 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.