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Monday, November 14, 2011


Age range could be an issue for a date Dear Annie: I am a 44-year-old single guy with no kids, never married. I look younger than my age and could probably pass for 34. I recently met this beautiful girl who is a senior in college. She seemed very nice and is probably 21 or 22 years old. I thought that maybe the next time I see her, I would ask her out on a date. Is this a crazy idea? Am I way too old for this woman? If so, what would be the right age range for me? I must say again, this woman is stunning. — R.J. Dear R.J.: Yes, 22-year-olds often are stunning. That loud sigh you hear is from all the 40-yearold women who wonder why a 44year-old man isn't looking at them. But to answer your questions, anyone over 18 is fair game, although your age gap adds a certain creepiness factor. A 44-yearold man is more likely to find an appropriate mate if he looks for women over 30. If you want to ask this girl out, go right ahead, but don't lie about your age, and don't be surprised if she says no. Dear Annie: My fiance and I have been together for three years and plan to be married next year. My problem is that he still communicates with one of his ex-girlfriends. This would not be such a big deal, but she is someone with whom he has cheated in the past. I've told him that the friendship bothers me, and he says he is also friends with her husband, and that is why they keep in contact. Her husband knows nothing about his wife's previous affair with my fiance. Should I just let this friendship continue, or am I right to want it to end? Am I being careful or just insecure? — Confused Dear Confused: We understand why this particular woman would bother you. If your fiance is being honest about the nature of the relationship, his contact should be primarily through the husband, and he shouldn't mind if you are part of every conversation, email or text involving the ex. If he refuses or if you notice anything amiss, tell him the friendship is over. If he wants to cheat, he will find a way, but you don't have to make it easy for him. Dear Annie: I read the letter from "A Formerly Trusting Wife," who has been married to "Bill" for 43 years. She failed to listen to her friends who tried to warn her that Bill was having a relationship with a co-worker. I was once there, but not as the wife. I was the cheating husband. I was the one who fell from grace. I led a charmed life, graduated with honors, made the dean's list, became an Air Force officer and the president of a local civic organization and the town's Little League. I was respected at my church and often counseled young men who were about to dishonor their marriage vows. And then quite suddenly, I became a liar and a cheat. I lost my family, the respect of my children, my honor and my dignity. My pastor asked me to resign from the church, I was shunned by church members, and worst of all, I saw my son and my daughter cry over the heartache I caused. The woman who was my partner in this love affair has long since moved on to another man. I live a lonely life 100 miles away from my former family and seldom see my kids or grandchildren. I wish there were a way to restart my life. My message to Bill is to stay with your family, learn to love your wife again, make it her birthday each and every day, and your reward will be evident in the coming years. — Frank Dear Frank: Thank you for sharing your sad story. Hopefully, it will help someone else before he or she makes the same mistake. Annie's Mailbox is written by Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar, longtime editors of the Ann Landers column. Please e-mail your questions to, or write to: Annie's Mailbox, c/o Creators Syndicate, 5777 W. Century Blvd., Ste. 700, Los Angeles, CA 90045. To find out more about Annie's Mailbox and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at


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NOVEMBER 14, 2011 10









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HOW TO PLAY: Complete the grid so that every row, column and 3x3 box contains every digit from 1 to 9 inclusively. Find answers to today’s puzzle in tomorrow’s Troy Daily News. SATURDAY’S SOLUTION:


Cooking advice from the 1960s Dear Heloise: I am your newest fan! I am 42 and have never really cooked. My husband is an amazing housecleaner, so I don’t have to worry about that much, either. But I have recently started COOKING and was going through old cookbooks. I found two old Heloise books, “Kitchen Hints” and “All Around the House,” from the ’60s! (Heloise here: These were my mother’s books.) I received these 13 years ago from my mother-in-law when she moved from Austin, Texas, to Denver and was downsizing every-

Hints from Heloise Columnist thing. It has been such a delight to read these books for the first time. I really appreciate everything our mothers and grandmothers did with nostick cooking spray, zipper-lock bags and all the rest! I can’t

wait to devour your website as well. I have been sharing the fun tips and stories with my mother and my friends. — Melanie S. in San Antonio Melanie, thanks for being a “new” fan! My mother’s old books are a fun read, and many of the hints are still valid today. However, some of the hints may no longer work or are no longer safe. How about picking up my latest book, “Handy Household Hints From Heloise”? You should be able to find it in your local bookstore (call first), order it

online or visit to obtain a copy. — Heloise FAST FACTS Dear Readers: Here are some other uses for your old baby bathtubs: * Take with you on a camping trip and use to wash dishes. * When bringing outside plants in from the cold, place them inside one. * Fill with water and use to soak your feet. * Use to soak clothes. * Use outside to bathe pets. — Heloise


Being all he can be


Being all he can be