Hello again, readers. Here’s hoping that the Spring weather wherever you live is as sweet as what we are experiencing here in Brooklyn. In what seemed like the blink of an eye, we went from having a foot of snow on the ground to strolling through sweet flurries of pink and white cherry blossoms at the Brooklyn Botanical Garden. Another blink, and Coney Island officially celebrated Spring with the opening of the Cyclone, that ancient wooden roller coaster that gets more thrilling with every year it defies gravity, termites and the wrecking ball. Everybody from the peewees to the grannies are coming out of the woodwork with smiles on their faces and love in their hearts. Let’s see what’s on your minds during this sweetest of times:
Dear Dot Kham: I am a twenty one-year old senior in college, and I graduate in June. The economy is in such a mess I’m not sure I can get any sort of job. What am I supposed to do with my life? – Ben Dover
Dear Ben Dover: Enjoy it, fool! You’re 21, you’ve got an education and you live in America. That’s what’s called hitting the lottery in life, pal. The hard times won’t last forever, they never do. You’ll find your way. If life was easy, this beautiful Springtime wouldn’t seem so special, would it? Stick around, dream your dreams and do your level best. One day you’ll see that the rewards are all that much sweeter for having been hard won.
Dear Dot Kham: I am 19 years old and beginning to see the world very differently from a lot of people I know. They tell me it’s a dog-eat-dog world and I should worry only about myself. But I’m okay, things are pretty good. I’m healthy, people tell me I’m pretty and I love being alive. That doesn’t seem like anything I should worry about. There are a lot of other people, though, who have it very hard, and I’d like to help them to see what I see, to get some love and enjoyment out of this beautiful life. I’m going to change my major in college next year, maybe become a doctor or something else where I can really help others. My boyfriend told me that he doesn’t like what I am becoming and I should always look out for #1, but that seems awful selfish to me. What should I do? – Becky
Dear Becky: Just be who you are child, and God bless you. And lose that Mr. Me-First boyfriend of yours. You have already helped someone feel better, me, and if this world had more Beckys, it would be a better place. Whatever you do with your life, I can see that you are one of those special people who leave others feeling better about themselves. When you give and when you help, you get more than you thought possible, so tell those people around you that looking out for others is looking out for yourself. You made my day, kiddo.
Dear Dot Kham: I’m Becky’s boyfriend, and who the hell do you think you are to tell her to be herself? She’s only 19 and doesn’t know how cruel this world can be. Why should she waste her time helping others who should be helping themselves? I’m 22 and I’ve been around the block a few times. I know that other people will only drag you down. How will she get through the hard times with her attitude? People will only take and take from her and hurt her. Let me tell Becky what’s what and keep your nose out of it. – Butch Wax
Dear Butch Wax: You’re 22 and you’ve been around the block a few times? Get real, bozo, I’ve got shoes older than you! While I can see that you care for Becky, you’ve got more problems than an algebra textbook and no solutions. As far as you telling her what’s what, it seems like Becky has a hell of a lot more to teach you than you can ever teach her. She’s walking joy and you’re just another arrogant young jerk who thinks he knows everything. Guess who will survive hard times better, you or her? She will, and she will make them easier on those around her, and if you’re very lucky you can be one of those people. But don’t count on it, Butch. Becky’s not made for bitterness and selfishness and doesn’t need your permission to be who she is. Who asked you? Thank your lucky stars that someone so very special ever looked at you twice, never mind gave herself to you. And those hard times you talk about? Well, without being too pessimistic, just let me say that you ain’t seen nothing yet! Those of us who actually have been around the block a few times know that life can be a bumpy ride and love, kindness and joy are to be cherished more than gold.
Dear Dot Kham: I know that politics isn’t generally your thing, but am a conservative who has been loyal to the political right my whole life. Only trouble is, Dot, is that I’m beginning to question some of the people who have led our movement these past few years. It seems they have been making a lot of blunders. Your thoughts? – Dick Shnifferr
Dear Dick Shnifferr: Blunders by the right wing? You think? How about invading the wrong country in 2003? Seems like quite a gaffe to me, as big a screwup as you can manage. How about tossing New Orleans a cinderblock when it was drowning? Did “compassionate conservatism” help them? Or how about the bunch of you crying like little girls when you got voted out of office and refusing to cooperate with your lawfully elected replacements? Winning any hearts and minds lately by opposing medical care, of all things, you selfish dogs? And why dust off Newt Gingrich, that corrupt piece of shit? What, the fat blob of a lying, racist drug addict Rush Limbaugh was too scary for you, or Sarah Plain’s just too friggin’ stupid to be a mammal? You people really have got to be kidding here, Dick! Only now you’re having second thoughts? Where were you when Dick Cheney was trying to repeal the Bill of Rights and torturing people like this was The Spanish Inquisition and not America? As far as politics not being my “thing,” well, just let me say that politics is how we deal with other people, whether on a personal or a public level. Either you treat them well, or you treat them like crap, and your team has been treating their fellow human beings like crap for a very long time. Wake up and smell the coffee, Dick, and try love instead of hate. It’s better for the world and better for you.