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by Abigail Van Buren

Job Competitors Must Work on Friendship After Hours

DEAR ABBY: I hope my story gives "Ticked Off in Georgia" a good laugh. He and his wife had attended a party given by friends. Not many were in attendance, and only hot cider and nonalcoholic beverages were served. Later, when comparing notes with other friends, he learned that there had been two guest lists. Group A described the open bar, fine wines, etc., while group B was on the "dull and cheap" list.

Years ago, my aunt and her husband invited us over for a chicken dinner at the noon hour. When we were called to the table, my husband and I noticed at once that the meat plate held boiled wieners. We never batted an eye, and no explanation was offered to us about the missing chicken.

Right after we had eaten, my aunt and uncle went outside for some reason. I speedily peeked into their kitchen cupboards. Lo and behold -- there on the stack of remaining dinner plates sat a whole cooked chicken. I was miffed!

When my aunt and uncle returned, over coffee they commented that their preacher and his wife were dropping over for supper that evening. Then it all clicked! We felt better knowing we had been switched to the "B" list so the good preacher could have chicken for supper. Still chuckling ... JANETTE KAUFFMAN, BEAVERTON, ORE.

DEAR JANETTE: Thanks for pointing out that in some cases, there are extenuating circumstances.