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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Friday, April 29, 2005
Dear Bubby,

I was dating a guy for the last two months of spring semester. We go to school in the same city, but at different schools. When I left town for the summer, we mutually agreed that we would not be officially dating through the summer.

For the first month we were apart, we spoke almost every day, and emailed throughout the day. Our conversations always indicated that we'd not only remain friends throughout the summer, but also date again when I got back into town. Now, just a few weeks before I return, we only talk once a week, maybe email once a day.

I don't understand his changed behavior, and all I can imagine is that he has lost interest or started dating someone else. What I really don't understand is why, when we do talk on the phone, he remains so sweet and very clearly expresses that he is excited about my return. So the content of our conversations hasn't really changed, but the frequency has.

I am missing him more than I let on, but don't want to harass him and keep calling him more often or anything like that. Do you have any advice?

Thanks so much,
Almost in love

Dear Almost in Love,

My guess is that this young man has become interested in sonething else or a person and doesn't know that you are waiting for a call. Or are you calling him? If so, stop and see if he calls to ask "why". In the meantime, meet some other boys. There are lots of fish in the sea.

You don't tell me your age so I can only imagine that you are a teenager and you have plenty of time to date others after the summer when you go back to school.

Give youself a chance.
Good Luck.
Thursday, April 28, 2005
Dear Bubby,

There is this really annoying boy who keeps following me. He is the embodiment of super-geeky... really, he is. At band camp this week, he has constantly been following me. I try to be nice to him, just so I don't hurt his feelings or anything, but it's really beginning to take its toll on me.

He is one year younger, and not exactly the type of person that is a blast to be around... an annoyance, rather. To boot, I am not the only one he follows and has followed around, so it's not like it's a new habit for him.

Please help me Bubby! I don't want to have a "stalker" during the school year!!!!!

The "Stalked"

Dear Being Stalked,

I can understand how you feel having someone hanging around and unwanted. I think you ought to tell him that he is not your type and he is too young so "Just get lost."

You have more important work and interests and cannot be hanging out with him. He probably has no friends of his own and thinks by his actions he will gain friends. That is all wrong and you should tell him that.

Try to be as kind as possible when you tell him that but make sure he understands - he is no friend of yours -- so don't hang around.

Wednesday, April 27, 2005
Dear Bubby,

I want to ask you for your advice on a relationship or lack there of. I'm in love with a girl in my drama group. I can't stop thinking about her. But I don't know what to do.

I'm 17 and I have never loved like this. I've gone out with other girls before but not loved them like this. My problem is that she is 20 and 4 years ahead of me academically -- she is finishing college this year and I am finishing high school. This is a bit of a difference in Ireland.

I have felt like this for about a year and half now. I had no thought of asking her about it until about 4 months ago. We started a play where a character was being forced into an arranged marriage. As the roles settled, she got the part of the girl being forced into the arranged marriage and I got the part of her true love. We had some great fun in rehearsals, but it was what everyone else was saying about the 2 of us on stage that was making me think. Most people said that there was a great chemistry between us. I believed that it was just her ability as an actor, but then recently on a night out with the drama group the 2 of us were talking about something when she stopped me to ask what kind of cologne I was wearing. On other nights out I noticed that she seems to be laughing at even my most stupid jokes.

I really have no idea what to do, but I know that I don't want to lose her. I have had too many sleepless night thinking about her, and I don't know whether I should risk saying something.

Sorry for the mail being so long.

I from Ireland

Dear from Ireland,

I think that you should have a talk with this girl about the future. Ask her what she plans to do. She probably will say "get a job and a career and maybe meet someone." At 20 she must think of you as a nice kid and that is about all. In your discussion you can bring up the discussion of how you feel about her and you will learn how she feels about you.

It is true that there are marriages where the wife is older than the husband but that is usually among people older than your age and this girl. When you both are acting in a play remember that it is only "make believe" and if you are good in your parts the audience will say "they are terrific." But remember it is only MAKE BELIEVE.

I would suggest that you wait a few years - another girl will come along and you will recognize that this was just a teen age crush. Play the field and have fun till then.
Tuesday, April 26, 2005
Dear Bubby,

I'm a 17 year old girl from Minnesota. I'm writing because I'm very confused. All my life, I've always had a lot of friends. I love to hang out and do so with a large group of kids my age.

Lately I've been so loneIy though. People my age are coupled up and I feel like I'm missing out on so much. I've never had a date to a school dance, even though I'm friends with guys, I've never actually been taken out on a date, like other 17 year old girls. Every week, my friends and I do the same thing...and nothing ever happens. It's getting really depressing knowing that I don’t really have opportunity to meet guys my age. I don’t feel unattractive and I'm usually outgoing - but I'm becoming more and more reserved.

Can you give me some advice on what to do? I feel so lost right now.

--Dazed and Confused

Dear Dazed and confused,

You just have not been discovered yet by the boys. At 17 you have plenty of time to meet very nice young men. Don't miss any of the school parties or dances. Dress casually, use a LITTLE MAKEUP, smile, dance and have a lot of fun with your friends at these outings. The boys can't help but noticing you.

At your age you must be planning to go to college and you are sure to meet fine young men there. That is where I met them and you will too.

Good Luck
Monday, April 25, 2005
Happy Passover, Everyone!

Dear Bubby,

My friend wants to bring his recipe for "Noodle Yummy" to our Passover Seder this year. No can do, right? Unless it's made from a matza product, right?


Dear Hungry Friend,

I don't know what kind of noodle pudding your friend wants to bring to the seder but if it is made with Passover products there should not be an objection to it. It might be good.

If the guest in not Jewish you should explain about the food and its contents for Passover. Every year the food producers always try to introduce new products to expand the menus - some are good and some have no flavor.

I say again, if the food is made with Passover ingredients - try it. It might be good. And if so, send me the recepe.

Enjoy. Happy Passover.
Sunday, April 24, 2005
Happy Passover Everyone!

Dear Bubby,

We are having 32 people for seder the first night of Passover.

However, we are having trouble configuring seating so that the tables are all connected. Is it acceptable to have four separate tables that are within close proximity of each other?

Thanks for your input.
--Passover Planner

Dear Passover Planner,

It really does not matter how you arrange the table for the seder. I have attended seders where we all sat around a long table and took turns reading the various portions and we all had a good time. Some even included their own interpretations. It was great fun.

I also attended seders at synagogues that were more formal where the rabbi did the readings and interpretations and families each had their own table and followed in the hagaddah.

The atmosphere had a holiday air about both. Everybody contributed their own ideas about the text. And the soup and matzo balls were great.

Have a great time whatever you do.
Tuesday, April 19, 2005
Hello Bubby,

I have a quick question...
I am driving to L.A. with my family to go to Disneyland. The only problem is I have a big problem with cars. In L.A. there will be eight lanes on one side of the road and eight lanes on the other. I have a problem with two lanes of traffic.

I'm going no matter what -- but is there anything I can do to ease the anxiety?

Thank you,
Scared of L.A.

Dear Scared of L.A.,

There is nothing to be afraid of driving in the lanes in L.A. if you obey the rules. I would suggest that you contact the LA traffic department and ask for a copy of the rules. Follow them - stay on the designated signs and you will be OK. Even if you fly and rent a car you will need to know the rules. So go to it.

Have a good and safe journey.
Monday, April 18, 2005
Dear Bubby,

This is my first time doing this and I hope you get my letter.

Bubby, I'm just 13 and I'm starting to focus on my appearance. I have a 7-year-old sister but she isn't really worried about her appearance. She's really all I have besides my mom and step-dad.

Anyways, I really could use some help on my appearance! It isn't really all about BOYS now! I'm just ready to grow up and start taking care of myself, and how I look and dress.

If you think that you can help me please let me know!

--Wondering Girl

Dear Thirteen year old,

What a nice age. I'm sure your mother can help you with your wardrobe but I can give your a few suggestions.

* Always brush your hair each day so that your hair will shine and be clean.
* Have your hands and nails clean.
* Ask your mother if you can have a professional manicure with a clear or soft polish once in a while - it will make you feel grown up.
* Your clothes should be clean and fit well.
* Your shoes can have a small heal if your wish.
* On occasions you might wear a bit of light make-up.
* Always look and feel like you just got out of the shower.

You will develop good grooming habits that will serve you your lifetime. If you feel and look good, you will grow to be a fine, fine young woman. I am sure that your mother can give you help in growing up.

Don't worry about the boys--they have to grow up too. I think that girls mature earlier than boys so at this point in your life think more of yourself than the boys and you will grow up to be a beautiful young lady.

Best of everything.
Sunday, April 17, 2005
A little note from Bubby

This Bubby column started as a fun joke but I must say that I am having fun with it. It brings back memories of my youth. Then the questions that come from older people make me think of the good life that I enjoyed all these years.

If I helped anyone I am satisfied. I have had many experiences. Good and bad and I have many happy memories.

Good luck to everyone.
A Happy Passover to all.

Keep writing!
Saturday, April 16, 2005
Dear Bubby,

I'm a 40 yr old guy living in the big city and I'm having a hard time meeting the right woman. I am a good looking guy and work as a professional. My nature is reserved.

I work a great deal and think that time has passed me by building my career. I have dated in the past, but on many occasions have been described as "being too nice". This makes no sense to me. The women I've met were not interested in settling down or having kids.

I've recently joined the JCC and some clubs believing that at least I have a chance being out there.

Although it seems as though the more outgoing guys always seem to attract more attention, it's just not my style. Am I missing something in the dating equation, I can't tell?

Do you have any wisdom on finding the right one?

Thanks, Unlucky in Love

Dear Unlucky in Love,

You tell me very little about yourself so I can't visualize you but I think you must be using the wrong approach. Do you dress like a professional or don't you care how your look? Do you brag about yourself, which is boring and rarely is interesting to women. Do you have men friends you can talk to for help?

Have you tried J-Date? Many a romance has started that way. Try it - you may like it. It is just possible that there may be a woman who is just waiting to hear from you.

Try it - It can't hurt.
Good Luck.
Saturday, April 9, 2005
In the last post, Bubby wrote back to a group of students who were asking about ideas for a school project on agriculture. A day later we received another great letter from someone else who had even more suggestions for the group.

Hi Bubby,

I noticed on the request for help with an agricultural project, no suggestion was made for one that may be very interesting for the students - animal reproduction. Animals are just as important to agriculture as plants, and even though I was never interested in horticulture, animals were up my alley. There is tons of great information on the internet, as well as books and a local vet may even be able to lend a hand with information as well.

My personal suggestion would be goats, as they are a multi-purpose animals, and gaining popularity rapidly in this country. They are used for meat, milk, fiber, brush control, and much more.

Anyway, great to see you're back with us and feeling better!


Hey, kids... Hope you get your A+ now!
Wednesday, April 6, 2005
Dear Bubby,

We are doing a project on agriculture for school. We need an idea. Everybody is doing it on flowers and tractors but we want something new! Can you think of any cool ideas that will get us an A?
The students

Dear Students,

I think you could have a project on what interests you most. You don't tell me that or the courses you are taking. You must all have hobbies, so why not choose and develop one like photography, art, music, or if you are girls you could do something in developing clothing and decorating.

Have a talk with your teacher. I am surprised that she did not give you a list of choices. Get together and talk it out and I am sure you will find a subject that will please all of you.

Good luck.
Tuesday, April 5, 2005
Hey Bubby,

Some of my friends recommended you!
I got a boyfriend again... the same one! I like him a lot and I want to hear his voice and I know he wants the same! But when we sit next to each other or if we call each other it is, "Hi, how's your day been going?" and after that we get all nervous and silly around each other.

I was wondering, what do I say to him? I like him a lot and he likes me too but we get all funny sounding around each other and then sometimes I will give him every detail about what's going on! Scary, huh? (haha)

Well if you have a solution or a request let me know.

Thank you,
Girl Talk

P.S. I am only 14 so if you can give me a solution pleaz dont tell me to talk about gooshy stuff!!!!

Dear Fourteen,

At fourteen or fifteen a boy is not as mature as a girl. He can talk better to a boy than to a girl. So when you talk to him, talk about things that will interest him and you will get responses and he will feel comfortable. If he is interested in sports, talk sports. If he is interested in one of his subjects - talk subjects - or anything that is of interest to him.

Before you know it he will have a lot to say. If he calls you, he is interested in you but gets tongue tied.

At the same time, befriend other boys. At 14, you should have many friends among girls and boys.

Good luck.
Monday, April 4, 2005
Dear Bubby,

What are the 3 things that you are supposed to bring into a new jewish home? I believe two are bread and sugar. Do you know what the 3rd is? My brother and his wife are moving into their new home on Wednesday and I want to make sure I have the 3 items.


Dear Housewarmer,

The third thing is a broom to keep your house clean.

Good luck to your brother and his wife. I hope they will be very happy in their new home.
Friday, April 1, 2005
You're not Alone
Sometimes we get great letters from readers who have more advice to add on to what Bubby has suggested. Today's post is just that...

Hi Bubby, thanks for being so much fun to read!

I was noticing the letter from Feb. 12 about the boy who is always fighting with his mom, "Feeling Desperate". When my sister was in middle school she did the same thing to my mom. She would come home from school and immediately start picking on her, yelling at her, calling her names, and trying to engage her in a fight. Their fights would sometimes last into the night. My mother was a wreck over this horrible treatment.

Finally in desperation my mom brought my sister to the therapist that she had been seeing. The therapist asked my sister point-blank why she was treating my mom this way, what was going on that made her feel like she had to act this way. My sister thought about it and said, "Things are hard at school. I don't always get the material and the teachers seem to like to make me feel stupid. Then the other kids pick on me, or talk about me behind my back. But I have to pretend like none of it bothers me, and not cry, or I'll look like a nerd. It all makes me so mad. So I come home and that's the only time I can let the anger out."

It made so much sense to my mom, yet it was a big surprise. She was able to stop taking my sister's bad behavior personally and look logically at how to make things better for my sister. Years later she still talks about this situation as one where it could have gotten better sooner if only she had been able to see what was really the problem.

I am not saying that the son of this single mum in the letter is having trouble at school, just that the problem may not be what it seems, and she should not give up looking for ways to help her son.

"Been There"

Keep writing!

"Help Me, Bubby!" Disclaimer
By submitting a letter to this website, you grant Help Me, Bubby! permission to publish it on this site or elsewhere including print publications. Your letter will only include an anonymous signature that you provide or that we use to substitute for your real name. Your email address will never be included or distributed. Due to the large number of letters received, there is no guarantee that a letter will be responded to. Any information or advice given at Help Me, Bubby! is not intended to provide an alternative to professional medical treatment or to replace the advice or services of a physician or psychiatrist. Neither Bubby nor her granddaughters are professional therapists or medical experts. If you have any serious medical or mental problem, please consult a professional. Although all this advice is offered lovingly from the heart and in good spirit, we are not responsible in any way for your decision to accept or reject the advice or the results thereafter.

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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.

Bald and oblivious
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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