Agony Ant: Lapsing Pacifist

Prompt: Smooth


Dear Agony Ant,

I like to use a hair straightener/ flat iron on my frizzy hair to make it smoother and shinier, but my friend Darlene says I am just frying my hair and then hiding the damage.

Every time we meet up with the gang at Piper’s Pub, she makes a comment like, “Did you straighten it again? You are ruining your hair!”

She also believes I shouldn’t wear nail polish on fingers or toes because my nails won’t get enough oxygen, and that if I wear deodorant it will clog my pores. She would never grill meat on the barbecue, she informed me, because char gives you cancer.

Otherwise she is a fine bridge player, tells jokes well, gets on with my (second) husband Barry, and is a thoughtful dinner guest, though she does not visit our home without mentioning the number of dust mites hiding in the carpet, and showing us an enlarged picture of same on her iPhone.

I am weary of listening silently, then ignoring her advice, which is what my sister Evelyn counselled. In fact, I am thinking of purchasing a legal firearm.

How can I deal with Darlene in a way that will both quiet her tongue and allow me to feel some satisfaction that she will suffer a little, too?

Lapsing Pacifist


Dear Lapsing Pacifist,

Have you realized yet that she is trying to steal your husband Barry? She wants him to see you as a frizzy-haired, sloppily-groomed, ignorant, smelly bad housekeeper. Personally, I think there are worse traits, but this is nonetheless your “friend’s” evil and obvious plot.

She is not much of a friend, is she? I say find a new bridge partner.

Peace and Love
agony ant


Dear Agony Ant,

Actually, Darlene is a lesbian in a committed relationship, so I am pretty sure she is not after Barry. However, Barry doesn’t realize she is gay since he doesn’t believe in gaiety, though he is a kind man, and if he knew Darlene and Adelia were lesbians I think he would accept it.

I think Darlene is just an extremely annoying, attention-seeking, know-it-all.

Lapsing Pacifist


Dear Lapsing Pacifist,

Then you must become an Annoying Vegan (Veganism is delightful, we are going for Annoying). Tell her the omelette she is eating has a soul. Educate her about farming practices, with photos of stockyards, when she has a hamburger. Tell her that she is stealing nourishment from an innocent calf whenever she has a milkshake.

Describe in detail how young, strong, and healthy you feel, and alert her that a diet of leafy organic chard and root vegetables will clear up her oily skin and freshen her wan complexion. Serve bitter greens and binding grains when she visits, washed down with green liquid, telling her that you are helping flush toxins out of her internal organs. (Be sure to know the names and functions of all internal organs, by the way, and find ways to work the topic of internal organ specifics into any conversation.)

It’s not likely that she will make a connection between your behaviour and her own, but she might; and in the meantime you can enjoy her extreme annoyance at your intrusive and condescending lectures.

Don’t forget to keep a second refrigerator in your garage, full of eggs, milk, ice cream, and rib-eye steaks.

Peace and love,
agony ant

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