DEAR ABBY: Every time your column addresses the danger of children left unattended around water, I am grateful.
Fifteen years ago, my boyfriend and I were strolling along the edge of a lake far from the public swimming area. He worked as a lifeguard at the lake, but was off-duty that afternoon. As we walked, he almost stepped on what appeared to be a bundle in the murky water. He reached down to examine it more closely and pulled out a little girl!
The chances of our finding her were nothing short of miraculous. Because my boyfriend was trained in CPR, he was able to revive her. We then took the terrified child to the picnic area, where her parents were lounging. Abby, they hadn't even realized she was missing! When we told them what happened, they responded that since lifeguarding was my boyfriend's profession, he was just "doing his job." Can you believe that! -- HORRIFIED IN FORT HOOD, TEXAS
DEAR HORRIFIED: Yes, I can believe it. Instead of recognizing their irresponsibility, the parents chose instead to dump the responsibility on your boyfriend.
I hope they realized later how lucky they were that you two guardian angels were in the right place at the right time.
DEAR ABBY: I have a dear friend who is considerate to the extreme when it comes to remembering special occasions in the lives of her friends and family. She calls or sends cards to acknowledge every anniversary, birthday or special event. However, I think that at some point it should stop.
Both my parents have passed away during the last five years. They were wonderful people who lived full lives. I remember them privately on the anniversaries of their deaths.
My problem is that on these special dates, my friend always calls to say she is "thinking of me." This sends me into a tailspin of mourning, because her call is never timely. I may be thinking of other things and not dwelling on the past.
Abby, how do I tell her to remove me from her list of death remembrance calls without offending her? I realize she's only trying to be thoughtful. -- DO NOT DISTURB IN TEXAS
DEAR DO NOT DISTURB: Level with her. Thank her for her thoughtfulness. Remind her that everyone copes with death in his or her own way -- then tell her exactly what you have written to me. It's honest, and she shouldn't be offended.
DEAR ABBY: I am confused and have no one to talk to. There's this guy I like who asked me out, but I told him no. Now I'm having second thoughts because we aren't as different as I thought we were.
I don't want anything too serious right now, and he keeps saying things like, "I want to have sex with you." He tells me that we would be great together and goes on and on about how "hot" I am.
What should I do, Abby? -- BUNDLE OF CONFUSION IN PORTLAND
DEAR BUNDLE: Accept the fact that you and this young man ARE different. You want a relationship that isn't serious. He wants sex -- and sex is VERY serious.
Keep this guy at arm's length and don't let him talk you into anything.
P.S. The next time he tells you how "hot" you are, suggest he take a cold shower.
Abby shares more than 100 of her favorite recipes in two booklets: "Abby's Favorite Recipes" and "More Favorite Recipes by Dear Abby." Send a business-size, self-addressed envelope, plus check or money order for $10 (U.S. funds)
to: Dear Abby -- Cookbooklet Set, P.O. Box 447, Mount Morris, IL 61054-0447. (Postage is included in price.)
4520 Main St., Kansas City, MO 64111; (816) 932-6600