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DEAR Abby: I was recently invited to a party. The invitation stated a specific time for the event. I arrived on time, only to find the host and hostess not there. One left as we were arriving, and the other came in two hours late (at a ball game for a child).

Two of their children, ages 7 and 11, were home. I consider this to be extremely rude, as it happens every time they host a party. I say they do not consider the time of their guests to be important, and if they can't be present at the time stated on the invitation, then they shouldn't invite people over.

All the guests entertained themselves until the "hosts" got back. What are your thoughts on this? I will never accept another invitation from them. -- CAROL IN SPOTSLYVANIA, VA.

DEAR CAROL: I don't blame you. The "hosts'" manners were appalling. Frankly, I'm surprised any of the guests stayed around for two hours. I can only surmise they did it in order to be sure the children were properly looked after. Why anyone would accept a second invitation from such irresponsible, inconsiderate hosts is beyond me.

DEAR ABBY: My husband and I just found out that we are expecting our third child. This pregnancy was unexpected. Our youngest is now 7. I gave all my baby stuff away to friends and family after our second daughter was born.

We are not in the poorhouse, but it would definitely be nice to have some help. To be honest, I am also excited about the idea of a shower because it has been so long since I have been pregnant.

I want to have a baby shower, but I'm not sure if it would be appropriate because this is our third baby. Are there any rules saying you should have a baby shower only with your first? Please help. -- EXPECTING IN OHIO

DEAR EXPECTING: According to Emily Post, "It is all right to give showers the second, or even third, time a couple has a baby. But only when the guest list is limited to close relatives and very close friends, and guests who didn't attend a shower for the first baby."

The shower should be hosted by a close friend of yours or a member of the family. Today people understand that every baby deserves to be celebrated, and that's a step forward from the "old days," when people felt that baby showers were "one to a customer."

DEAR ABBY: I am a Jewish teenager with a huge problem. There are many kids in my school who will not stop telling offensive Jewish "jokes." In the beginning it was kind of funny, but after months and months of it, the jokes have reached a whole new level. They are inappropriate, offensive and personal.

I have asked them many times to stop, but they never listen. Is there anything I can say that will get the point across that I really want them to stop? -- HURT IN MOORESTOWN, N.J.

DEAR HURT: Probably not. You have already tried and it didn't work. Now it's time to tell your principal what has been going on, because you are being scapegoated. The principal can see to it that the student body receives some sensitivity training -- and, if necessary, notify the parents of the guilty parties.

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