Help Me, Bubby!

Other Bubby Books at Amazon:

Bubby Irma's Kitchen

Yiddish Your Bubbe Never Taught You

Poetry by Jewish Grandaughters

Bubbe & Gram

Bubbe's Kitchen

My Bubbe's Arms

Bubbie & Zeide's Favorite Language

Bennett and His Bubbe's Beau

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Wednesday, June 30, 2004
Dear Bubby,

HELP ME!!! PLEASE!!!! There's this guy I like at school, but I dunno if he likes me too. We're really good friends and stuff and get along really well, but I still don't know. We're next door neighbors and we've known each other for 2 years.

Last week my friend asked him if he liked me and he said he wasn't answering. Then he walked off. Might I add that he blushed and smiled, and then tried to act serious? I'm confused.

I don't really know if I should ask him if he likes me or not, because he might not want to talk to me after that. DO YOU THINK HE LIKES ME? SHOULD I ASK HIM? PLEASE HELP ME BUBBY!

Clueless In Virginia

Dear Clueless in Virginia,

If you asked your friend to ask this "guy" as you put it, if he likes you - that was silly. I can understand why he walked away.

What you should do is be friendly towards him - talk to him -- in your conversations talk about school or what you or he does after school. By the way he answers you - you will know how he feels about you. If the responses are good and he begins to ask you questions and you talk about a lot of things, you will soon know if he likes you. I hope he responds and you can be really good friends.

Good luck.
Tuesday, June 29, 2004
Dear Bubby,

My children are lucky enough to have five sets of aunts and uncles. Three of the sets are doting and come to see us, invite us over, call the kids and send them surprises. As a result, our children know and love them, even though they live far away.

But the remaining two rarely come to see the kids, even though they live nearby. They see us only at family functions and holidays. My youngest doesn't even recognize them by sight.

This disappoints us. It's sad to think that we may just not be important enough to them for them to care. I do not want this to perpetuate. But, I should not always have to be the one to initiate plans, or suggest getting together.

What can you suggest we do to help heal the potential rift their behavior has created?
Thanks, Family Minded

Dear Family Minded,

When you are far away from loved ones, it always gives one a warm heart to send little gifts - especially to little children. It is the only way to establish a loving relation. Do your little ones send "thank yous"? They endear them more.

When relatives live closer they sometimes feel that closeness is there even though they don't see you and your family much. I feel that is wrong because you can live next door and be distant not close. A family who lives close should spend time together. It gives you a warm feeling when you share your ups and downs together.

I experienced that. Two of my siblings lived close to our parents and it was always happy relations with the children. The children were at home in their grandparent's house whereas we lived far away and our children always felt strange with their grandparents. In other words - they had to be on their best behavior because they were visiting. Their cousins were completely relaxed.

I think you should invite your relatives who live close to you out to lunch or just a visit to talk and bring these points to their attention. You should be closer and it is very important for the children. Do you enjoy the same recreations or are they in a different echelon? None of this should make a difference within a family. Friends are one thing - family is another. And when all is said and done - it is the family who is still there.

I hope this is of some help to you. I've been there.
Monday, June 28, 2004
Dear Bubby,

I am a 26-year-old woman looking for love. I met a 49-year-old man in a dance class I took up not long ago. He is only the second guy I have been with in my life. Things got carried away and it was good for a while.

The truth is he is everything that I want in a man. But although he does not look his age, I can't get over the stigma that he is older than me. Do I just look past it or do I move on and find someone else?

Thank you,

Dear June,

This man is almost twice your age and that seems like a lot. At 26 you should be looking for a younger man that might develop into a future. I doubt that you and this man will marry or if he would ever want to be a father. Has he been married before? I am sure he likes being admired by a young woman and may even brag about it to his friends. "That's macho stuff."

I do think you should look for greener fields. You are young and you should be seeing younger men who are your age or even up to 35. I know of many young women married to men ten years older - including my sister. But I don't see a 26-year-old tying herself down with a 49er. A friend yes, but that is all.

He may be a good dancer, but what else? Try dancing with some younger men. Look around - they're there.

Good luck,
Friday, June 25, 2004
Dear Bubby,

I've come down with the flu, in summer no less! So not only is it hot out, but I've got a fever and chills and aches and pains.

What this means though is that I must find a way to feed myself and my husband with minimal effort (the hubby, bless him, is not much of a cook.) Can you suggest some good, easy ideas for dinner on a hot summer's evening when the chef of the house is under-the-weather?


Dear Sick,

Sorry you are under the weather. Be of good heart. Rest and liquids is best for you. Drink a lot of orange juice, cranberry juice, etc. Some hot soup - if you can stand them in the summer is good too. You can also have some cereal such as cream of wheat or oatmeal. A soft boil egg. I personally would not eat salad - it might be too hard to digest.

As for your husband, he can always make himself some scrambled eggs, have soup with you. AND YOU CAN ALWAYS ORDER IN FROM ONE OF THE LOCAL LUNCHEONETTES.

You should concentrate on getting better and soon you will be up and around. Don't let it get worse.

Get well soon.

Thursday, June 24, 2004
One more thing to say...
Tuesday's letter from the sad bride who was missing her father touched Bubby so much, that days later she felt she still had more to write...

Dear Fisherman's Daughter,

I have been thinking of my answer to you with reference to a prayer from the person who will marry you. And it occurred to me that if you have some little memento of your father's, such as a small bible, a pin, even a tie that is tied around your waist under your gown, you could either hold it or wear it and really have him close to you.

I wish you well. Happy wedding.

Dear Bubby,

I just graduated from high school last June and I'm having a really hard time getting used to my new life. I started college a few states away in September, only to realize I hated it there and move back home. I'm happy with my decision to come back home and take classes at a community college, but I still feel like a lot is missing in my life.

In high school I had a group of truly wonderful friends and since graduating and all going off to different schools it seems as though everyone has been having a great time with their new lives except for me. My whole life I've handled change really badly, but now I want to get over that and learn to enjoy life. I want to be having a great time, too, but I feel stuck and can't seem to motivate myself to make my life better. What should I do?


Dear Cha-cha,

When I read your letter I remembered what happened to me when I was in college. After my first year and I came home - I got the cold shoulder from "my dear friends". I asked one "why" and she told me that since they all stayed home and I went away they had nothing in common with me. Of course, I felt bad but I realized that they were really not true friends and I set about finding new friends and I did. I called up one that was just an acquaintance and said, "Hi, we have known each other for some time and now that I am back and going to a community college how about getting together?"

Make a date to go for a walk - lunch - movies - if you both play tennis - go to it. And from her friendship I am sure you will meet others. By then your old "friends" will feel left out and will surely call you. If not, you have a new friend.

In your lifetime you will meet many new people - some you will like and remain friends for life and with others time and distance will separate you. But true friends are for life no matter time and distance.

Good luck, smile, be happy.
Wednesday, June 23, 2004
Reader Updates: Trials and Tiles

On April 19th, our Bubby received a letter from a stressed-out law student who had just flipped out in class. Standing before her class during a mock-trial, our legal reader wrote Bubby, "I totally absolutely froze like an icicle. Then I started melting and my eyes started tearing and before I knew it... I ran out of the classroom crying."

Bubbys' had a few years experience with lawyer lament, so she wasted no time telling this young woman, "Cheer up... When you lose a fight you get up, dust yourself off and get right into the fight again." She had no doubt that with the proper preparation, a healthy dose of confidence, and a nice new blouse, our aspiring lawyer would come back on top.

So, what ever happened to "Laughing Legal Stock"? Is she cracking up... Or cracking the whip?

Dear Bubby,
In case you wanted to know what ever happened to my oral arguments for law school, they turned out well! I was nervous but I did well in the first round of the competition and got called back to the second round. Unfortunately I didn't get picked for the Moot Court team after the second round. But it was a definite confidence boost to do well enough to make it past the first round. Especially after my total wipeout in the practice session.

I am taking two classes this summer for which I have to give oral presentations. Your advice helped last time and I will use it again to help myself gear up this time. But no matter what happens, it can't possibly be as bad as the first experience. I guess that's the good thing about falling down. There's really only one place you can go -- up!

All the best,
No longer a legal laughing stock

Conquering the caulking...

Back on November 13, Denice wrote to us about the calking in her shower turning black. She needed a non-abrasive, whitening solution, and FAST. Well, Bubby recalled a story (many years back) when her husband tried to do the same for their own shower, only to find that the bleach he was using burned through his rubber gloves down to his fingers, and it took 6 weeks to recover! Above all, she cautioned Denice, "Certainly don't do it yourself."

Well, this is one time when a reader didn't take Bubby's advice...and it turned out OK!

Dear Bubby,
The chlorox bleach stick did wonders!

So, here's to all lawyers and clean bathtubs everywhere.

From, the granddaughters, and...
Tuesday, June 22, 2004
Dear Bubby,

I am getting married at the end of July to a wonderful man and I'm very excited. We have been together for several years and have been through all the obstacles that life has thrown us. We are buying a home together and are in the final stages of our wedding plans. I'm so looking forward to walking down the aisle and beginning our new life together.

But with all the joy surrounding our wedding I know I cannot shake the sadness that comes with it. My father passed away tragically and suddenly 5 and a half years ago. He was lost at sea and his body was never recovered. This was only a few months after my fiance and I had started dating. They never got to meet.

One of the first thoughts that came into my head when I found out about the accident was that he will never walk me down the aisle. Now that time is here. I will be walking down the aisle escorted by my mother and my older brother. It will be wonderful to have them with me as they both mean the world to me. But that's not the way it was supposed to be. I know that it has been a long time since I lost my dad. But lately, the closer we get to the wedding, the more I miss him.

I don't want to cry as I walk down the aisle. This is a happy time. But I can't let myself just forget about him and how I had dreamed of him being there to give me away, and to have the Father/Daughter Dance. I had always wanted to dance to an old song about a fisherman and his daughter.

Bubby, do you have any advice on how to heal my broken heart?
-The Fisherman's Daughter

Dear Fishman's Daughter,

My sympathy goes out to you. To loose your father and not even have a grave that you can visit from time to time is truly heart breaking. But as you said - life goes on and getting married is indeed a happy occasion.

But if I were you I would ask the rabbi (from your letter you sound Jewish - but no matter what religion) to say a prayer in his memory. You will feel that he is with you to watch over you, his little girl. I am sure the rabbi will oblige and it will also please your mother.

I wish you great joy and happiness in your new undertaking. From your words you sound like a wonderful young lady.

Mazel Tov.
Monday, June 21, 2004
Dear Bubby,

I am interested in a guy that works in my office. The problem is - he is very handsome and half the women in the company hit on him shamelessly. He is a sweet, nice, down-to-earth guy who does not brag. He actually even seems a little shy...

Fact is, I don't want to join the line of women who throw themselves at him because 1- that's just not me, and 2- that won't impress him. But I don't know how to go about it. How can I make myself noticed without making a fool of myself?

Help me please...

Dear Infatuated,
So, you don't want to make a fool of yourself? Then go about your business in the office and don't join the crowd. Don't the other women in the office have anything else to do?

Maybe he notices you if he is a little shy and doesn't know how to approach you. Say, "good morning" to him when you meet in the morning and "good night" if it is appropriate. Soon that will become a habit and the language between you will start. Do you have a lunch room where you work and do the people use it? If so, lunch when he does and you might ask him a question or two about work or some public question.

You can tell from the answers, expressions or body language if he is enjoying your company or if he is saying by his expressions, etc., "Get lost."

I hope it works out.
Friday, June 18, 2004
Dear Bubby,

HELP! I am desperately in love with a man and I don't know if he feels the same way about me.

We met through a mutual acquaintance long distance. Although we have only met face to face twice, I think he may be The One. My problem is that although he has said that he is in love with me, and is willing to move closer to be with me, I doubt his sincerity.

How can I know for sure?
Confused in Tennessee

Dear Confused in Tennessee,
After only two meetings I can understand your situation. You don't even know this man. Wait until you have met him another ten times and see what he is like. I know that there can be love at first sight but you must test that to see if you are right or wrong. After the testing period and it turns out right - you will have a happy future.

However, if you find that all this was a pipe dream, you must forget about this person and be glad of it. Don't rush into your future without a lot of thought. Make sure it will be heaven and not that "dark place".

Thursday, June 17, 2004
Dear Bubby,

My husband has just accepted a new position out of state. We have a 6 month old baby girl who is going to be missed terribly by her Bubby. Any advice to make the transition not so painful??

Nanny Fan

Dear Nanny Fan,
In every family there is always a problem when one member has to move further than around the corner. It also happened to me but it can be helped. If the distance is not too far away, after you are settled, you can invite Bubby to come and visit. I am sure she will enjoy not only the little one but also your new home.

We visited by turns. Sometimes my parents visited us and then the next month we visited them. It worked out just fine. And don't forget take lots of pictures of the little one. As he (or she) grows she will recognize Bubby whenever they get together. At holiday times you can plan to visit one year your parents and the next year it's your husband's parents. We did all this and we never had trouble -- just one happy family because we understood.

Enjoy your baby.
Wednesday, June 16, 2004
Dear Bubby,

I've been going out with my boyfriend for nearly 4 weeks. It's been great. But just recently my boyfriend asked if I thought that his close friend fancied me. I replied no. Then he asked if I fancied his friend. I replied no.

This has really bothering me. Why would it?????
Please help -- I'm only 12!

From, Alone

Dear Alone,

Four weeks? And he wants to know if you like his friend? And visa versa? Has anything happened between you and the friend? In four weeks you could hardly know him or his friend.

If I were you I would tell him to wait until you know them both much better and then you will have an answer for him. Who knows, another boy will come along and you will like him much better than these two.

You get to know people by spending time with them - school, lunches, walks, movies, etc, and just have fun.

Best of luck and keep smiling.
Tuesday, June 15, 2004
Dear Bubby,

My bubby passed away a few years ago, otherwise I would be asking my own bubby. Thank you in advance for offering your services.

There are no jobs in America. I would be willing to take one in Europe, but that's a long shot. I am a writer. I have a $100,000 education. I graduated at the top of my class from one of the best art schools in the country. I drive a taxi.

I'm getting desperate. What can I do to get a job, please? Do you know anyone who can put me to work? Real work? The kind that involves a desk and my brain, please? Please?!


Dear Penniless,

I am sorry that you lost your Bubby, but that is life and now you must take yourself in hand.

I'm sorry but I really don't have access to a writer's job. Have you gone to what is known as a "head hunter"? They are people who use your resume and then contact firms who are looking at what you have. There may be a "finder's fee", but it would be worth it.

As for going overseas for a job, I would not recommend it at this time. I feel EU is very anti-semitic (since you say bubby, I assume that you are Jewish). If you want to go overseas, why not try Israel? Contact the Daily Forwards - maybe some help. But I think applying to some magazines, journals here in the city, is better.

How about Philadelphia or Chicago? Or best, try the agency. Firms are always looking and these agencies have the answers.

Good luck.
Monday, June 14, 2004
Hi Bubby,

What did you think of the funeral services for our late great President?

from, Shiksa

Dear Shiksa,

I watched the entire procedures of all the ceremonies. I thought there was a lot of pomp and ceremony as if it was staged, and in fact it was. Just tonight I saw an interview with the officer who was her escort. They had been actually practicing for years to do this so that it would be perfect. I know that Mrs. Reagan had 10 years to do all this and I think she made good use of the time. I suppose when you are in that position that is what you do.

The president did his job as well as he could but I personally would not list him above the greats. That info will come later on. One commentator said that when he became president he took the challenge and really tried for the country and when it was over he walked away without a backward glance. I can't condemn him for that. After all he took the job, did the best he could and that was it. I just say -- Let him rest in Peace.
Friday, June 11, 2004
Sometimes people write Bubby novellas about their lives. And sometimes they just get straight to the point...

Dear Bubby,
I scratched my car off another one this morning. I've only had it two months. I want to cry.


Dear Michelle,

I know that you would rather have gotten the scratch yourself.

Don't worry. I am sure that you must have insurance, so contact your agent and he will tell you what to do - you must report it to the police, make a report to your insurance company and it will all be taken care of. You must exchange information with the other driver. You will need it.

Sooner or later we have all had such trouble so - welcome to the club. Next time be more careful in your driving and parking. And be aware of the other driver.

I hope this will be the only mishap you suffer in driving for the rest of your life.

Enjoy your car.

Dear Bubby,
Hi. My graduation is coming up and I don't know what to do with my hair.


Dear Persnickity,

What is wrong with your hair? You don't tell me! Is it long - short - dyed - or what?

But I will tell you -- you will always look your best if your hair is well shampooed and combed in the style that you always wear it. Then you will be most comfortable. If there is to be a formal celebration and you will be dressed in a long gown, it will still look well because girls today do not spray their hair 'till it looks stiff and unnatural.

So be yourself and have fun at your celebration and at commencement receive your diploma graciously and I wish you the very best now and when you go out into the world and do well.

Good luck.
Thursday, June 10, 2004
Dear Bubby,

I need your advice on renewing a friendship. The person who used to be my best friend has recently broken up with his girlfriend. Unfortunately, she was extremely controlling and cut him off from many of his friends, including myself.

So over the last 3 years we have drifted apart. I stopped making an effort over a year ago because I was tired of dealing with her. He was never allowed to go out without her, she wouldn't let him talk on the phone with his friends, and she was rude (just a few examples).

I have been missing my best friend and I would like to renew our friendship, but I am unsure of how to go about it. I know that he could probably use a friend right now, but I don't want him to think badly about me either, because of this period of no contact.

What should my approach be and what should I do if he wants to know why I have kept away? The last thing I want to do is bad mouth his ex-girlfriend. Should I just wait and see if he comes to me?

My best friend means the world to me and I miss our friendship. I appreciate any advice you can give.

Missing You

Dear Missing You,

You should not given up your friendship with this person if you thought so highly of him. And I can't understand why he kept up this other friendship if it was so intolerable.

Never the less, I think you should be honest - not say anything nasty about this other person. If you have some occasion, call him and ask him if he would like to be your escort. If you go to the same school, try to have lunch at the same time as he eats. Be friendly - don't ask him anything about this other person. If in the course of your get-to-gether - if he brings up the subject, just say you understand, but don't say anything that will upset him. If you play your cards right you will have won him back.

Try it - you will like it. You will be a better person and so will he.

Good Luck.
Wednesday, June 9, 2004
Congratulations to Bubby for her JewsWeek accolade. She's listed as one of the nine most remarkable things in Jewish culture this week.

Dear Bubby,

I can't stop procrastinating! I'm in my senior year of high school and it's really important for me to stop doing that. Sometimes even when time is tight and I know I must finish a project/studying/homework, I distract myself with other things. I end up regretting it and angry at myself for being so stupid.

Please help,

Dear Procrastinator,

Recognizing that you have a problem is half the battle.
Now you have to train your mind to stay on course. I know that is not easy but with endurance you will make it.

Put everything out of your mind except the task at hand - such as, your essay MUST be handed in by a certain date. Concentrate on that.

-- essay - date === essay - date === essay - date.

Nothing else on your mind.


It will be tough at first but you will learn to concentrate on the job at hand.

As you grow you will find that procrastinating will get you nowhere -- that is,
no where you really want to go.

Please give it a try.
Tuesday, June 8, 2004
Dear Bubby,

I am a 25 year old woman who has been dating her boyfriend for 2 years now. The bone of contention between us has always been that I want to (and am ready to) marry my boyfriend, while he is not ready. Any time I have ever brought the topic up, he has always told me that he loves me and just needs a little bit more time. The first time I brought this up was 10 months into our relationship. Obviously, his "little bits" have been adding up.

Recently I have been more hurt and upset -- as I feel this has been dragging on for too long. I have told him that he needs to make a decision. His response was "I love you and want to marry you, I just need more time". We have spent time with each other's families, see each other every day (though do not live together -- and cannot as we are Orthodox Jews), even have a dog together.

Finally I told him that basically he needs to make a decision as I grow more hurt and upset every time he delays the future. I feel like a reject -- I'm good enough to date, but not to marry. He insists he will propose -- sometime. His actions don't always support that. For example, he has been looking into a buying an apartment, and has not asked my opinion on locations. He claims that he would not actually buy it without me seeing a place first, but he still doesn't bring me with to see places.

Yesterday, he told me, "I love you and I know I want to marry you and raise a family with you, and you are the only one for me. I'd rather wait longer but I don't want to lose you and make you upset and I'd rather marry the right person for me."

I told him I don't want to accept a proposal from a person who is only giving it because he doesn't want to lose his girlfriend. He said that is not the reason -- he's proposing because he wants to marry me. His preference is to wait, but his stronger preference is to be with me.

I am so torn, I don't know what to do. I worry that if I don't accept his proposal, another one won't be forthcoming so quickly. I'm worried that if I accept and he really doesn't want to get married that eventually the marriage will dissolve because it was created under bad circumstances. He said that the proposal isn't what sets the tone for the marriage -- its the past 2 years that has done that.

Maybe he's really ready and, not having been in this position, doesn't know how to deal with his feelings?


Dear Confused,

You are not confused but this boyfriend of yours certainly is.

If he wants to marry you and two years have already passed, what is he waiting for? Does he have a career? Established in business? If he is planning on buying an apartment, you should be with him all the way. You are both getting older and wasting time. I think he has gotten used to you - everyday - and what do you talk about everyday, or do you just spend the day arguing about when to get married?

If I were you I would take a long vacation from him and see how much he misses you and comes to get you. I think he has become too complacent. It seems to me that Orthodox people prefer quick and young weddings so the couple can get on with building a home and a family. That seems like the healthy thing to do.

I can tell you just recently I heard my friend's son and his girlfriend parted company after 16 years of togetherness. They are not Orthodox but the pain is the same. This woman just got tired of waiting. Don't let that happen to you. You are young and deserve someone who will respect, admire, and love you.

I hope I helped you a little and I wish you the very best.
Monday, June 7, 2004
Dear Bubby,

I work in a retail store where there are people working around the clock. I work in the office and so I know most of the people who work there fairly well. Because I generally work the afternoon-to-night shift, I also get to talk to the people who work overnight. One overnighter and I have gradually become friends over the past few months. We don't get to talk very much because I leave soon after he gets there. Anyway, to make a long story short, I'm interested in dating him. But, I have no idea if he's interested or not...

A friend and I talked him into going to a concert with us. He came, but we weren't able to talk too much (we went in separate cars, the music was REALLY loud, etc). It's hard to ask him to join me and my friends in group activities (like going to the movies) because of our varied work schedules. We have different interests and lifestyles, but I still find him fascinating.

I guess my problem is that I can't read him. How can I gauge how much he likes me? How can I tell if he's interested in me at all? Please help!


Dear Em,
I think that if you are interested in someone - the best way to find out what he is made of - ask him. Do you ever get the chance to lunch with him at the store? That is a good time to ask about his likes, dislikes plans for the future, etc.

You say that you speak at the store. Is it just Hello -- or do you have conversations? If so, ask him about himself -- what music he likes, movies? sports? etc. If he wants to get to know you better he will open up and talk. If he is an introvert and has nothing to say - I would suggest you don't waste time on him.

Good hunting.
Friday, June 4, 2004

Want a hat? This and more at Bubby's store.

Dear Bubby,

My father-in-law moved in with us 1 week ago. His wife of 63 years passed away unexpectedly 3 weeks ago. He is not well. His is 83, has prostrate cancer and is on oxygen. He is a wonderful man and we are hoping to help make the rest of his golden years good.

He was paying $900 a month rent plus all the extras that go with making life comfortable in Pennsylvania. Now that he is with us in Florida I feel that he should be paying his way. I feel that he could also pay $900 here at our home, considering that we are doing everything for him.

Help. I don't want to be a scrooge and would respect your opinion. Both my husband and I are semi-retired, but still need to work.

I also care for my Mom who is 95 yr. young and lives in a low income apt. I pay for someone to help me look after her. The money that he would give us would help a lot. Of course, if he "needed" the money for medical expenses, he would have it.


Dear Bonnie,

Your letter made me think of a sitcom. But I do sympathize with you. I am surprised at your father-in-law. It did not take him much time to decide to move in with you, and at the same time he should have been just as quick to tell you that he would contribute a certain amount of money for his living.

First he must have health coverage for which he should pay himself along with other personal expenses. And then your husband should have a talk with him about what he should contribute to living with you. This should be between your husband and his father - you are not the daughter. You are already contributing to your mother's welfare and I am sure that is not easy - and you are still working.

Your father-in-law can surely understand these circumstances and should be only too happy to pay his way - it will give him a feeling of pride and being with you and your husband will keep him happier than being alone. By all means he (your father-in-law) should pay his way and be proud of it.

Good health and good luck to all.
Thursday, June 3, 2004
Dear Bubby,

Several months ago you gave advice to a young woman who asked whether it was better to pursue a "safe and secure" relationship or a "passionate and exciting" relationship. I followed your advice (it applies universally) and am now in a great relationship with a guy I trust. I just finished my second year of university and am hardly ready to settle down, but for the present, I'm very happy.

This is the first time I've felt serious enough about someone to continue a relationship despite distance, so I'm at a bit of a loss. I'm leaving for China tomorrow, and will be there for 5 weeks. I know 5 weeks may not seem like a long time, but I am wondering how best to handle it. I would like my relationship to continue where it left off when I return. Is it best to keep strong contact via email? Or should I immerse myself in the culture over there as much as possible and temporarily cut the ties? Thanks, Bubby.

Half-A-World Away

Dear Half-A-World Away,

I'm really happy for you and I hope you have a great time in China. I assume that 5 weeks will be a learning experience and visiting the sites. As for your relationship - if you like this young man, why should you give him up? How does he feel about you? If it is good then you can correspond via email and you might tell him that if at all possible you will call him one day while you are away. Suppose you were at different schools - you would correspond and meet when it was possible.

When I was in college, I had a boyfriend and we were many miles apart but that did not matter. The feeling was mutual and after three years we were married. It was very successful.

Best of good luck.
Wednesday, June 2, 2004
Dear Bubby,

I just saw your blog and found it very interesting and kind.

I have been unhappy with the fact that my boyfriend does not seem interested in reading my blog. It is important to me because I take my writing ambitions seriously but he seems clearly disinterested.

We have talked about it before but I can see that the level of interest is not what I expect from someone close to me.

It may sound silly, but for what it's worth, it's important. How do I resolve this in me?

Yours sincerely,

Dear Disenchanted,
What kind of a boyfriend do you have? He should be interested in you and everything you do and say. How would he feel if you ignored the things he says and does?

If he was my boyfriend I would put it to him straight - Are you with me or against me? If "yes" - then be interested in me and everything I do and say just as I am interested in everything you do and say. If the answer is "no" I think we should have a very important "talk". Then see what he has to say. You will know from his answer if this relationship should go on.

Be a winner.
Tuesday, June 1, 2004
Dearest Bubby,

I am 17 and I've always been known as very loud and over-the-top in my personality. However, it recently occurred to my that the main reason for my behavior is because I am painfully shy. I can't seem to find a way around acting the fool, but I know it is hardly making me gain friends.

I really need to discover a new way of acting or controlling my behavior since I am hoping to go to university next year. I am terrified that I will not be able to make any friends and be hated by all. I hate the way I behave and really need to find a way out. Please help me.

Yours hopefully,

Dear Sarah,

If you know what the problem is - that is half the battle. So just develop a quieter way of speaking - think before you speak. You sound like a bright girl and you will adjust when you get to the school of your choice.

I remember when I was a freshman in college. It is not easy to adjust but it will come to you. You will see that some girls make a lot of noise and say nothing and others are quiet, have nice smiles and are very friendly. I tried the later and people did notice me.

In addition to your classes, get involved with the other campus activities. That helps a lot and you will meet people that you will like and you may turn out to be friends for life.

Just be yourself and be friendly. You'll do fine.

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Bubby is our 88, 89, 90, 91, 92, 93 94 year old grandmother.
A few years ago we introduced her to the internet and we've been getting daily e-mails from her ever since. When she was 87, we began this website. We now believe she is the oldest blogger on the Internet.

Whether Bubby is reminding us that boyfriends do not substitute for warm jackets in the winter, or that it's better to receive a compliment than a brick, she always has something to say to her granddaughters.

Now with this new website, Bubby can finally share her wisdom with the rest of the world. And she's excited about it! (Which confuses us, because she used to say we were all she needed.)

Hopefully this will be as much fun for new readers as it will surely be for her. And if not, well, as Bubby says, it will all come out in the wash.

So, are you looking for advice on food, work, a broken heart, or the perfect bat mitzvah present?

But no dirty words allowed or you'll only get one matzah ball.

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Denim diagnosis
Girls are weird
Halloween ideas
I smell him from here
I'm gonna marry you
How to meet a man
Nerds go far
Political predictions
Sloppy spouse
Tastes like chicken

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