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Happy Friday to you, loyal Rock-A-Holics! Let's kick off the weekend with a little bit of Group Therapy, shall we?
Monica needs some advice about a woman in her group of friends. This particular lady is a real flirt…with Monica's boyfriend!
Monica's boyfriend isn't a big fan of this woman, and he says he just ignores the flirting. Meanwhile, Monica CAN'T ignore it, and it makes her angrier every new time it happens. Her group of friends is the kind that spends a lot of time together, including special occasions; this includes events like Monica's upcoming birthday party. Even though she knows that the other women in the group will question her decision, Monica is thinking about leaving Flirty off the invitation list.
Personally, I wonder if there's a possible future in which Monica tells the woman how much she's bothered by her behavior, the woman apologizes profusely, and the flirting stops immediately, never to return.
It could happen, right? RIGHT!? HEY, WHERE ARE YOU GOING!?
Welcome back to Group Therapy, gang! We like to think of you all as members of our big, weird family!
One Rock-A-Holic who likes to keep it in the family is Robert, who wrote us to say that he's thinking about dumping his girlfriend…for her mother.
It's okay, you can take a second. Go back and read it again. We'll wait here.
A couple of years back, Robert had a one-nighter with a woman, and he was definitely interested in a return engagement. She was freshly divorced, and not looking for any kind of relationship. Jump ahead to a couple of weeks ago, when he met his current girlfriend's mother. Do you see where this is going?
The mom sent Rob a friend request on Facebook, and messaged him to confirm that she would keep their mutual secret. As the conversation went further, she told Rob that she regretted not getting into a relationship with him after the one-night stand. Rob is 38, the girlfriend is 28, and Sexy Mom is 46. Guess which one of the two women he can't stop thinking about?
I need some help here, folks. I'm shaking my head so hard at this one – especially in the mom's direction – that I can't even think straight. What should Rob do about this situation?
For today's Group Therapy session, we're going to keep it short on top. We may also take a little off the sides, and probably tease the back. Let's get started, shall we? Chop-chop!
A Rock-A-Holic named Lindsay wrote to us, looking for some advice; let's see if we can help her out. Lindsay is a hairdresser whose clientele happens to include a married couple, and she considers herself friends with the wife. The husband and his wife come in separately, and the conversation is usually pretty easygoing and friendly. During a recent appointment, however…the husband told Lindsay that he's with another woman.
(Hang on for a second. I'm going to make an early prediction about this one: the husband is trying to get with Lindsay. Men don't talk to women about this stuff unless they have an ulterior motive.)
When Lindsay reacted with shock, the man backpedaled quickly, and told her that his other woman was no problem, because he and his wife have an open relationship. Lindsay is almost completely certain that he was lying about that, because the wife has said multiple times that she would kill him if he ever cheated on her. Lindsay concedes the point that the wife may be keeping that aspect of her relationship a secret from her hairdresser, but she's worried that the husband's revelation has put her in a terribly awkward position.
We're back on the job with some Group Therapy, but we definitely need some human resources…in the form of Rock-A-Holics helping their own kind!
Sheila has some inside information about a fellow employee who's about to lose their job. Unfortunately, that employee is her boyfriend! The two of them work together, but not directly, and Sheila's a little bit higher up on the food chain than her man. It was Sheila's boss that spilled the beans, but he didn't know about the relationship; he thought he was just sharing the facts about a soon-to-be-dismissed employee whose job performance apparently isn't up to snuff. As you might expect, Sheila is feeling a bit conflicted, and she came to us for some help.
This is privileged information, and Sheila is really stuck in the middle of a bad situation. Should she tell her boyfriend that he's losing his job in a couple of weeks? There are so many things that could go wrong if he finds out his termination is imminent. People don't always take rejection and dismissal in the most mature fashion.
On the other hand, if she doesn't give him a heads-up, it probably won't take him long to figure out that his girlfriend knew about his firing in advance. The repercussions for that scenario are fairly obvious, I think.
This sounds like a job for the fine folks who read this blog! What advice do you have for Sheila?
Today's blog comes from one of my mentors, Dan Sanders:
I love sci-fi, every angle of it: music from David Bowie and his "Space Oddity" to R.E.M singing "Man on the Moon," mostly about Andy Kaufman and hoaxing, you know, like putting a man on the moon; movies like Alien, where we got to watch Sigourney Weaver give birth to a monster (and to this day still causes me to fear the worst whenever I have stomach ache); and TV from My Favorite Martian to Alphas. We've been spacing out for generations, if not hundreds of years, fascinated with what's over yonder or out there. Somehow the place we've been planted is not the place we want to grow. In fact, it seems we are hell bent on destroying what little earth we have been granted.
Now, if missing out on the winning Powerball wasn't enough to make you cry, I'm sure this will do it. The process is over for picking the final 100 applicants out of 200,000 who had their hearts set on the Mars One program and so desperately wanted to be shot to Mars and die there, 33 of them Americans. This is a $6 billion trip financed through sponsorships, crowdfunding, intellectual property revenue, and the sale of broadcasting rights. Broadcasting rights, wow! Maybe Brian Williams would like to go; I understand he needs a new gig. Or imagine being the first spaced-out spaced-out DJ. All this makes me wonder, why they are trying so hard to get off the earth? What are they not telling us?
In 1903, the Wright brothers successfully flew a plane for a whopping 59 seconds, Apollo 11 landed on the moon in 1969, and just 55 years later, in 2024, we're off to Mars. I heard one scientist say it would help us better understand the meaning and origin of creation, but sweet mother of the cosmos, we haven't done anything but screw up Earth. If there is intelligent life out there, and I'm sure there is, at some point they are going to say, "Back away from our planet, Earthlings. This is a pollution-free galaxy. Just turn your little spaceship around before we have to show you what a real probe feels like."
Oh! Guess what they are going to shoot into space next. Really!
There are more thoughts both orbiting and submerging on the shores of Rambling Harbor and one obvious blunder. In the podcast, I say that Lesley Gore died on Monday the 23rd instead of the 16th. Oops! Give a listen.
Hello again, good people! Let's all be friends to a fellow Rock-A-Holic, and gather around for some Group Therapy!
Thomas just learned that his girlfriend has an arch-nemesis…and she happens to be someone that Thomas used to hook up with!
The whole thing started when the girlfriend started a new job a couple of months ago. As she settled in to her new gig, she started complaining to Thomas about a co-worker that gives her a real hassle on a regular basis. It didn't take long for her to start absolutely hating this mysterious woman, and when she recently showed Thomas a picture of her work group, he realized that he recognized the enemy. This was a woman he hooked up with a few times, but it wasn't serious.
Unfortunately, he's going to be in the same room as both women very soon, as a work function will force him to confront the issue. Thomas is worried that the woman will recognize him, and their past will be revealed; whether the truth comes out by awkward accident, or as a malicious revelation from this woman who picks on his girlfriend, things aren't looking very good.
Thomas, you are on the highway to the Danger Zone. You need to decide if you're going to reveal the truth in advance, or let it come out awkwardly. I'm turning this one over to the Rock-A-Holics, because you need all the help you can get…
Here's another oddball story that I just have to share, gang…
During a recent screening of "Fifty Shades of Grey" in Scotland, three women (aged 31, 38, and 58) attacked a man because he asked them to quiet down. Not surprisingly, this occurred in a theater that serves alcohol. In fact, the man was hit with a glass, so the entire assault turned bloody. The women were arrested outside the theater, and one eyewitness account to the newspaper TheTelegraph said the attackers "looked the worse for wear from drink".
Oh, and did we mention that it happened on Valentine's Day?
This is one of those times when I have to point out that men don't act this way. When we go out for sex-related entertainment, we behave ourselves. I'm not going to overgeneralize and pretend that some guys don't get out of hand, but I believe it's largely true: we can handle ourselves in these situations more capably than women can. I'm not sure where the imbalance comes from, but there it is.
Meanwhile: Steve the Producer tells me that he saw a "Fifty Shades" section in Target recently. I'd check it out, but I'd be scared to find out what happens when you find yourself up against a crazed housewife, both of you reaching for the last blindfold…
Welcome back, Rock-A-Holics! We appreciate the fact that you've made a habit out of Group Therapy! Let's fire up a new session, shall we?
Today's friend-in-need is Mel, who is bothered by the fact that her boyfriend of two years has started smoking again (we assume that he quit before the relationship began). Mel is a vehement anti-smoker, and her boyfriend knows it, but he believes it's fine as long as he doesn't do it around her. She says the smell lingers too much on his clothes and body for her liking.
The boyfriend says that he's only picked up the habit due to work stress, and he swears he'll quit again eventually. Mel doesn't have too much faith in this ambiguous plan, and she wonders how long it would be before he starts again…so she's considering giving her man an ultimatum.
Habits – or addictions, I suppose – are a very difficult thing to wrangle for the people who are in the grip of them, and difficult to understand for the people around them. If I'm being honest, I'm addicted to sugar, and it's a hard habit to break. A candy bar doesn't get the same reaction from people as a cigarette, so I'm sure it seems like a fairly harmless addiction to the average observer; but rest assured, you don't want to see me on a day when I'm fighting to avoid the temptation.
That being said…Mel, I'm not sure I believe in the effectiveness of ultimatums, so I'm going to turn this one over to the good people who read this blog. Let's see some smoke signals from you, Rock-A-Holics: should Mel put her foot down, or wait for the problem to burn itself out?
I'm looking out my window, thinking there may still be life across that snow, behind that row of evergreens, but it probably has fur, sharp teeth, and walks on all fours—and that's just the people of Rambling Harbor. Winter's getting to be a bit much for some of us. They say that if the snow continues for much longer we all may begin to howl, and if the rum ship gets delayed, I fear the worst.
Today's blog comes from one of my mentors, Dan Sanders:
If you haven't heard, Rambling Harbor has had over eight days of continuous snow, and at this writing a total accumulation of 73.5 inches for the winter, or slightly over six feet of snow. Yes, over SIX FEET, and it has been below freezing the entire time so the snow is staying put, and at least another foot is due by the end of the weekend. Mother Nature celebrated Valentine's Day with the white stuff, and the combination of cabin fever and lack of sun through my windows creates an emotion in me that I call FFF.
Have you ever suffered from not giving a Flying Flock of Finches about anything? While I could have used geese instead of finches, considering the wildlife outside my windows, it would not have made as good an acronym as FFF. FFG just doesn't have the same stress release as screaming FFF over and over, clinching your fist. Now try it—I'll wait—and then try again with FFG. See? It's not the same. By the way if you say FFF out loud in public and someone says to you, What did you say? How dare you?, simply respond, What do you have against a Flying Flock of Finches? Must I call the wildlife society on you? What I am going through is Flying Flock of Finches syndrome, a freezing-to-death of the spirit with no relief likely until the first thaw.
On other matters, in the last few months we have gone from deflated balls on the gridiron to inflated boobs at the Grammy awards. Believe me, I love the latter view, but what do body parts have to do with talent and the awards female artists are vying for? Is there something they are not telling us? And Kanye West just surprised me twice, once at the Grammys and again with his Ryan Seacrest interview. Beck, I think, handled Kanye beautifully by inviting him to come back on stage at the Grammys, but my brain is still debating this one. If you missed it, Wild Wild West tried to interrupt Beck's acceptance speech, or did he? I haven't decided whether I give a Flying Flock of Finches about that or about one last FFF: What has taken Roger Goodell and the NFL so long to look into Bill's balls? The Watergate investigation took less time.
Other things to give a flock about, or not, are Bob Simon, Brian Williams, Little League baseball champions, and again, believe it or not, Kanye West. I hope you'll join me on the shores of Rambling Harbor.
It's Friday the 13th – a terrible day for the superstitious, and for stupid teenagers at summer camp! If you're into hockey masks and sharp objects, your luck probably runs a little better today. For those of you seeking some Group Therapy, things are looking pretty decent, too.
Let's see if we can help Mark, who has a great 4-year relationship with his girlfriend. Recent conversation about their sexual fantasies has revealed a mutual interest in a threesome; Mark stated his preference to have another woman in the mix, and his girlfriend agreed…on the condition that they try it with another man, too. Mark doesn't have any big problem with that, so they agreed to get around to fulfilling the fantasy. A suggestion from Mark that they try it for Valentine's Day was met with a very casual "oh, yeah."
The subject of this threesome came up for Mark during a recent evening of drinking with some coworkers. On his way home from the bar, a female coworker texted him and said, "If you're serious about that threesome for Valentine's Day, let me know", with the ever-popular 'winky-face' emoticon at the end. Mark says the coworker is extraordinarily hot, and he figures the girlfriend will like her, too…but he is worried about following through with a surprise threesome on the most romantic day of the year.
Mark, you're not thinking with your brain. I'm certainly not judging you for the threesome -- live the dream, my friend – but you're just not exhibiting any signs of understanding that this could really go horribly wrong. It is one thing to talk about these fantasies, but seeing them through is another thing entirely.
A surprise threesome? WITH ONE OF YOUR COWORKERS? Seriously?
Rock-A-Holics, let's hear from you. Bonus honesty points if you can speak from experience…
Welcome back, Rock-A-Holics! We've got another session of Group Therapy ready to go!
We're trying to help Rachel, who wrote in to ask a big question: should she tell her boyfriend that she once had a one-night-stand with her boss?
Rachel and her boyfriend have been together for a couple of years, and the hookup in question occurred shortly before that relationship began. Rachel says it was truly an isolated incident, and it's never acknowledged, most likely due to the fact that her boss is married.
Putting aside the boss being hitched, here's the other hitch: Rachel's boss and the boyfriend have mutual friends, have become friendly, and now the boyfriend is suggesting that he and Rachel should hang out with the boss and his wife!
This is a big warning sign for me, Rachel. If your boss is okay with this scenario, then he might either be a complete idiot, or he's carrying around some ulterior motives. I can totally understand why you would feel awkward about this situation, because you're being put on the spot.
When we discussed this on the air, a listener called in and suggested that Rachel should tell her boss that HE needs to shoot this situation down, and make it clear to him that she's not comfortable with a group friendship with their significant others. I think that's pretty decent advice, but I'd love to hear your thoughts…
Welcome back to Group Therapy, gang! Just a reminder: our help is always absolutely free!
DISCLAIMER: YOU GET WHAT YOU PAY FOR.
(Sorry, the lawyers make us say that.)
Onward! Today's Rock-A-Holic seeking advice is Katie. Her car recently let her down, so she called a co-worker for a ride. This generous associate was more than happy to give Katie a lift…for the low price of only THIRTY DOLLARS. Katie only lives about three miles from the woman, who justified the fee by saying that she low on money, and needed it for gas. Desperate to make it to work, Katie ponied up the dough in the form of a check…and she didn't even get a ride home after work!
Katie feels like she's been taken to the cleaners. Luckily, she didn't actually need to go to the cleaners, because I'm sure that trip would have cost another thirty bucks. A different co-worker gave Katie a ride home that day, and they suggested that she ask for her money back.
This might be an unpopular opinion, but I feel like a favor was exchanged for a favor, and that's the whole story here. Was the travel fee a little bit high? Maybe, but the terms were stated at the beginning of the transaction, and thus the case is closed.
Sound off, good people! Would you ask for a refund…or does the buck stop here?
Happy Friday to you, my fine fellow Rock-A-Holics! Thanks for always being a class act!
There's one person who will NOT be getting any class points, and that's New England Patriots running back LeGarrette Blount. During the Patriots victory parade this week, Blount held up a shirt in Seahawks colors that swapped out our "Beast Mode" with the term "Bitch Mode" and a number 24.
Blount took to Twitter to claim that he has respect for Marshawn Lynch, but this was a zero-class move, as far as I'm concerned. Funny, I don't remember Blount playing much of a role in his team's victory at the Super Bowl, but maybe I'm having selective memory…
What do you think, folks? Was Blount just being a little cocky during the victory parade, or does he deserve some anger and annoyance?
Today's blog comes from one of my mentors, Dan Sanders:
Hello again from the buried-in-snow shores of Rambling Harbor. Forty-eight inches at last count and more on the way is not my idea of white beaches.
One issue I try not to blog about is politics. I feel we all get enough crap thrown at us by the political junkies from both sides of the aisle and by the media, and it's often hard to tell who's hooked on which drugs.
There are some that medication might help. Let's start with Rand Paul, a true moron; John Boehner, who always looks like a poster boy for A.A.; and Ted Cruz, who hasn't picked up a book since Green Eggs and Ham, which he's still working on. And let us not forget Sarah Palin, who would have made a great saloon girl in the old west. Hee-haw, Sarah!
Rand Paul's certification as an ophthalmologist is from a group called the National Ophthalmology Board, which he founded. While he is a specialist trained in diseases of the eye, he is not a research scientist or medical practitioner in childhood diseases, yet last week he said, as if he were an authority, that vaccines should be an individual's decision. This reignited a controversy and recleared a path many parents followed as a result of a scare a few years ago that speculated there might be a relationship between vaccines and autism. In the intervening years, though, research has shown there is no relationship between the two, and even the organization Autism Speaks spoke out in favor of vaccinations, reacting to Rand Paul's comments.
I was about 8 in the 1950's when I saw a newsreel about polio. Shadows representing polio would pass over a child, and the child would fall paralyzed. This was an effort to push parents to get their children vaccinated, and thank God, it worked. I remember being terrified I would die or end up in a big scary thing called an iron lung or a wheelchair for the rest of my life. Fortunately, my dad and mom were not stupid and neither were many others, and polio was brought to an end in this country. If prayer had anything to do with it, then Jonas Salk was God's answer.
Yes, there are some questionable practices in medicine, but using a proven vaccine is not among them. Let's not destroy the lives of our children, or other people's, because some self-centered politician is trying to promote his own libertarian political agenda, especially one who probably thinks Green Eggs and Ham is what Ted Cruz has for breakfast as he and John Boehner have some gin and watch Sarah screw up the political spin…again.
There's more on the shores of Rambling Harbor. Join me there.
The Rock-A-Holic we're helping today is named Sophie, and she is worried about her niece. This 14-year-old girl is all over social media, and Aunt Sophie has watched in horror as her photos (on Facebook and Instagram) have changed from innocent to provocative.
Sophie has tried talking to the niece about being mindful of what she posts on social media, and a discussion with the niece's mother – Sophie's sister-in-law – has gained the worried aunt no ground. In fact, things have become a little awkward between them since the conversation took place.
This is an endless struggle: will adults ever understand teenagers? Personally, I think that the whole thing is a little bit crazy, because it's a never-ending cycle. Each generation looks at the one that follows as something alien, and that's where the disapproval reflex starts to kick in. I'm not saying that I disagree with the idea of wanting your niece to be a little more prim-and-proper, but with age comes a distance of perspective.
I was a teenage boy once, just as I'm sure Sophie was a teenage girl, but we have no frame of reference for the lives and behavior of teenagers in 2015. You can claim that certain standards are timeless, but that just isn't a very realistic viewpoint.
Maybe I'm too old-fashioned…or is that not old-fashioned enough? Your input is really needed here, gang!
Hello again, good people! I know that Seattle, as a city, is probably still in need of some Group Therapy after the Super Bowl, but let's try to take our minds off of that situation for a bit…and give some help to a fellow Rock-A-Holic.
Frank has a slightly unusual situation: he's worried about his daughter being an overachiever. Before you roll your eyes, you should know that Frank totally owns up to the fact that many parents would probably love to have this concern, but he thinks it's really something worth investigating.
Frank's daughter is 12 years old, and she won't even stay home from school when she's sick, because she doesn't want to mess up her perfect attendance. When other kids get better grades, she seems to take it very personally, and gets angry about it. As a father, Frank is worried that his little girl is going to struggle socially as she enters her teen years, or could be running at full speed towards a brick wall made of stress and her inability to lighten up.
The mother sounds like she might be the role model for this young overachiever; I say that because he mentioned that he's not sure if she would agree with – or even approve of – Frank's desire for his daughter to slow down and relax a bit.
If you can offer some advice to this father-in-need, we'd love to hear from you! Extra points if you can dispense some advice that doesn't involve a football metaphor…
Today's blog comes from one of my mentors, Dan Sanders:
The GAME: it all started in 1869 as a college football game between the College of New Jersey (now Princeton) Tigers and the Rutgers Queensmen, played on November 6, 1869. Twenty-six years later, on January 29, 1895, "The Raven" by Edgar Allan Poe was first published in the New York Evening Mirror. "The Raven" is about a lover's sadness as he falls deeper and deeper into madness and asks, what are you, a demon or an angel? It's a lot like the NFL these days.
Poe was from Boston but spent time in Baltimore. The Baltimore Ravens took their name from Poe's poem. On January 10, the Baltimore Ravens lost to the New England Patriots in the playoffs. The Patriots came back twice from a 14-point deficit, telling the Ravens "Nevermore" as John Harbaugh, the Ravens coach, objected to what he called a "substitution trick" by the Patriots in the third quarter of the AFC divisional playoff game, saying it was "clearly deception." Ravens players were confused about which Patriots to match up with in coverage, and Harbaugh drew a unsportsmanlike conduct penalty for running onto the field and screaming in objection. Harbaugh said he hoped the league would examine it, and the league did investigate and found all substitutions were completely legal. "Nevermore, Nevermore!"
After the Ravens, along came the Indianapolis Colts who, after getting demolished in the first half of the championship game and more so in the second half, screamed their balls were flat, meaning the Patriots footballs. A funny looking orange mascot tried to take out frustrations by pummeling the Patriots' mascot, Pat Patriot (a video of this is available), and then Blue, the idiotic Colts' mascot in a big cowboy hat, jumped on the Patriots' mascot. It's a game, damn it, it's just a game!
The Seahawks are a team I do like, including their coach Pete Carroll, and of course I like the Patriots, my home team. I think the Super Bowl will be a great game this year, but I am saddened that some of the glitter has faded for me because once again the NFL, coaches, mascots, and fans seem to have forgotten it's only a game. When it's over, win or lose by whatever team, my life will in no way change. I will still podcast and blog and be much poorer that Tom Brady or Russell Wilson. Hell, a Marshawn Lynch fine is more than I make in a year.
I likely will have very little else to say about this in the podcast, which will be done before the Super Bowl, but this piece is not about who wins or loses, just about a game—or has money made it a game "Nevermore!"? Could it be corporate greed that gets in the way of the game?
There's more on the shores of Rambling Harbor. Join me there.