Dear Auntie Linda, My father-in-law is way too grabby and makes inappropriate remarks, even in front of his wife and my husband My mother-in-law acts like she is blind and My husband, Reggie excuses him, saying, “That’s just the way Daddy is. He doesn’t mean anything by it.” I am angered by his father’s behavior and by Reggie’s attitude. Isn’t a husband supposed to speak up for his wife. What is wrong with this family? How do I deal with this without causing a flap? Hands Off
Dear Hands Off, Don’t be shy. Doesn’t sound like the sensitive type. The next time he pats you or says something offensive, don’t mince words. Tell him to keep his hands to himself and his mind out of the gutter. Obviously, you have to look out for yourself. Auntie Linda
Dear Auntie Linda. My father-in-law has been the minister of the church we attend for more than thirty years. He is well-respected though he is physically abusive to his wife, was abusive to his children, and has had a girlfriend or two on the side. This is not a big town. It would seem like word would get around, but I’ve never heard a complaint about him. I attend church faithfully with my husband and children, but don’t get a lot out of the service in view of what I know about this man. How can people get way with secrets like this? It seems like someone would have to notice something. Puzzled
Dear Puzzled, It does make you wonder. I guess that family must have kept his abuse to themselves and he just hasn’t gotten caught with another woman. He met be more organized than I am to keep his stories straight! Auntie Linda
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Sing in the shower.
Treat everyone you meet like you want to be treated.
Watch a sunrise at least once a year.
Leave the toilet seat in the down position.
Never refuse homemade brownies.
Strive for excellence, not perfection.
Plant a tree on your birthday.
Learn 3 clean jokes.
Return borrowed vehicles with the gas tank full.
Compliment 3 people every day.
Never waste an opportunity to tell someone you love them.
Leave everything a little better than you found it.
Keep it simple.
Think big thoughts but relish small pleasures.
Become the most positive and enthusiastic person you know.
Floss your teeth.
Ask for a raise when you think you’ve earned it.
Overtip breakfast waitresses.
Be forgiving of yourself and others.
Say, “Thank you” a lot.
Say, “Please” a lot.
Avoid negative people.
Buy whatever kids are selling on card tables in their front yards.
Wear polished shoes.
Remember other people’s birthdays.
Commit yourself to constant improvement.
Carry jumper cables in your truck.
Have a firm handshake.
Send lots of Valentine cards.
Sign them, “Someone who thinks you’re terrific.”
Look people in the eye.
Be the first to say hello.
Use the good silver.
Return all things you borrow.
Make new friends, but cherish the old ones.
Keep a few secrets.
Sing in a choir.
Plant flowers every spring.
Have a dog. (Or cat)
Always accept an outstretched hand.
Stop blaming others.
Take responsibility for every area of your life.
Wave at kids on school busses.
Be there when people need you.
Feed a stranger’s expired parking meter.
Don’t expect life to be fair.
Never underestimate the power of love.
Drink champagne for no reason at all.
Live your life as an exclamation, not an explanation.
Don’t be afraid to say, “I made a mistake.”
Don’t be afraid to say, “I don’t know.”
Compliment even small improvements.
Keep your promises no matter what.
Marry for love.
Rekindle old friendships.
Count your blessings.
Call your mother.
by H. Jackson Brown Jr.