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by Abigail Van Buren

Woman Fears for Sister Living With Unstable Dad

DEAR ABBY: I just returned from a "Manicure/Pedicure Party" for a friend who is being married. The invitation I received stated, "Please join us for a manicure and pedicure in honor of the bride-to-be."

I was home about 10 minutes when I received a phone call from one of my hostesses. She told me that I had left without paying for my manicure and pedicure! I was floored. I told her I had forgotten, but the fact is, I had assumed since the invitation stated "Please join us" that the hostesses were paying.

Did I misinterpret the invitation? Or do people now "host" parties where they expect the guests to pay their own way? I am embarrassed and confused. Should I have asked the salon worker or the hostesses who was paying the bill? -- CONFUSED IN COWTOWN

DEAR CONFUSED: Obviously you did misinterpret the invitation, which should have clearly mentioned that the event was "no host" and the guests would be required to pay for their own "salon services." I see no reason why you should have assumed that you'd be asked to pay, and your confusion is understandable. But please don't feel embarrassed. The folks who should feel embarrassed are the "hostesses."