Dear Abby,

Dear Abby

Dear Abby (Photo credit: HA! Designs – Artbyheather)

I never knew how cool you were. I grew up reading your column and then stopped for whatever reason and I can’t recall when. Now that you’ve passed, I’m learning so much about you I wished I had known when you were alive.  You and your twin sister didn’t always get along.  Your parents were from Russia.  Your brother-in-law founded Budget-Rent-A-Car.  You chose Abigail from the Bible and Van Buren from the eighth American president.

I never identified your sarcasm and hidden wit as a young teen, but appreciate them so very much in hindsight. I’m impressed at how your opinions evolved with the times while reflecting the common sense you so dryly imposed on your readers. For example:

To the people complaining about the gay couple who’d moved in next door and wanting to know how the quality of the neighborhood could be restored, you replied: “You could move.”

My question about other people’s questions is and has always been (whether they are writing to a local newspaper or to Cosmo): what do they do until they’ve heard back about their question? Do they avoid that person/situation altogether? They probably knew they might not hear back because of the high volume of readers writing in.  Or does that require the same common sense they’re probably lacking in the first place? I doubt I’ll ever know the answer to this conundrum, especially now that Abby is gone.

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