Life Advice



Ask Amy: Dating is disrupted by smoke-filled rooms

Amy Dickinson, Tribune Content Agency on

A very simple explanation for why you can’t visit this home is that you have a serious reaction when you are exposed to smoke, or the residue of it.

If this family had a passel of cats and you were allergic to dander, you would have to make a similar choice. You would not ask them to get rid of their cats, but you would very sensibly have to keep your distance from the house.

None of this precludes you becoming close to this family. You could picnic together, go on walks, invite them to your home, and take her nieces and your children on outings together.

If your friend is pressuring you to spend time inside an environment that makes you suffer, how good a friend is she to you?

This is something you should think about as you two continue to work this out.

Dear Amy: “Teacher in a Quandary” reached out regarding a rare collection of objects that were left behind by one of her students.


I graduated from high school in 1998.

Many years ago, while learning about World War II in my 11th grade U.S. history class, my grandfather, a veteran of that war, gave me several priceless items from his time serving our country.

I chose to bring these items into school to share with my teacher and classmates, and sadly, I failed to bring them home. For many years my family asked about those items, and I carried a lot of guilt with me for my lack of responsibility with such an important part of history and my grandfather’s story.

A few years ago, the high school that I attended began a major renovation, which caused many teachers to move from classrooms that they had taught in for decades.


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