ANNIE'S MAILBOX Snappy answers sought to rude questions
Dear Annie: I loved your column listing possible answers to the rude question "Why aren't you married?" I burst out laughing when I read the one that said, "Beats me, why aren't you skinny?"
My husband and I have been married for four years, and I am getting tired of hearing "When are you guys having kids?" I used to say we couldn't afford them, but now I say, "If you like them so much, have them yourself."
Your readers did such a good job with the marriage question. I would love to hear some funny answers for this one. Thanks. Childless in the East
Dear Childless: OK, readers, let's see what you can come up with when someone asks, "When are you having children?" We're counting on you.
Dear Annie: My husband and I soon will be celebrating our 50th wedding anniversary. I am afraid our two children will try to plan some lavish celebration that they cannot afford.
How can I convey to them that we neither need nor desire a big celebration? We don't want gifts or trips or parties that would be a drain on them. I would love to have our friends and family send cards. We could read and enjoy these for years.
Is there a proper way to express this without hurting their feelings? Should we say nothing and let them do as they please? Happy Couple in Pennsylvania
Dear Happy Couple: Congratulations on reaching this major anniversary. It's understandable that your children would want to make a big celebration -- after all, 50 years together is a rare and wonderful occasion.
Have a talk with your children. Tell them you would rather not have any parties or trips (don't mention the expense). Ask if they will encourage friends and family to send cards with special memories or photographs so that you will have something to cherish for the next 50 years. The rest is up to them.
Dear Annie: If a child is invited to be in the wedding party as a flower girl or ring bearer, should the child also be invited to the reception following? My friend's wedding and reception were held at the same place, so there was no separation of the two. The wedding invitation requested no children attend, but our daughter was the flower girl, and we kept her at the reception anyway. What do you say? M.B.
Dear M.B.: Any person, young or old, who participates in the wedding also receives an invitation to the reception. If the child is very young, however, the parents may prefer to have a baby sitter nearby or other special accommodations, in case the child becomes overly tired and cranky.
Dear Annie: A while back, you printed a letter from "Frustrated Pop," who asked how long he should continue supporting his struggling-actor son. Please tell him his son may be able to get help from the Actors' Fund (actors-fund.org), a non-profit organization that provides for the social welfare of members of the entertainment industry.
The Actors' Fund counsels us on how to find parallel careers to provide support. The staff will help people find new careers if they decide to leave the entertainment industry. They offer a number of services, free of charge, to all members of the entertainment industry, from designers to producers. The Fund deserves our support when we are successful, and is there to help us live our lives with dignity and security when we are not. Fishing for Herself in Los Angeles
Dear Fishing: Thank you for the information. We hope "Frustrated Pop" and anyone else in the entertainment industry will check out the Actors' Fund.