DEAR ABBY: My dad and I raise rabbits. My friend "Zoe" has always wanted one. Recently one of our rabbits had a litter, and Zoe fell in love with one in particular. Her birthday is coming soon, and I'm thinking about giving her this rabbit as a present. I would also include several days' worth of food.
My problem is, I don't know if I would be imposing on her parents. Should I ask them first? And do you think I should also include a cage? -- KENTUCKY BUNNY-LOVER
DEAR BUNNY-LOVER: You should never give a live animal as a gift unless you're positive that the creature will be welcomed and have a good home. That's why it's important to get the approval of Zoe's parents before giving her the rabbit. Be sure the family knows everything they need to about successfully raising a rabbit, including its behavior and the space requirements for exercise. You'll be doing them -- and the bunny -- a favor if you do. If Zoe's parents approve of the gift, it would be generous to include the cage.
DEAR ABBY: I'm a 14-year-old guy. I have been growing my hair out for a long time, and my bangs are now down to my nose. It looks and feels really cool.
My problem is, now that I'm in high school, adults get on my case about my hair. I can hardly go one day without some teacher yelling at me to "get your hair out of your eyes!" I flip it to the side, but they still seem annoyed.
I'm tired of hearing about it. One day, five different teachers all got mad about it. What can I say to stop people from freaking out over my hair? -- JOSH IN MICHIGAN
DEAR JOSH: Is this the only problem you're having with the teachers? Their concern may be that your hair is now so long you can no longer see the blackboard. And because they can't see your eyes, they may be unable to gauge whether you're "getting" the lesson they're trying to convey.
While you and I may think that what's inside your head is more important than what's on it, if several teachers have been commenting on your hair, it's time to do something about it.
DEAR ABBY: From time to time you have printed letters in your column from people who don't know what to do with their lives. I'm an intelligent woman in my mid-20s. I did well in high school, quickly selected a major in college, excelled there, graduated and found a job in my field. I worked for three years, and then was let go. As you can imagine, I was devastated. My plans for my life had fallen through.
That was several months ago. Since then, I have taken time to explore other options and interests. I may even head back to school, something I have wanted to do because I love to learn. I have also focused more on my social life and am in the first serious romantic relationship of my life.
To those of your readers who are unsure: Understand that life doesn't always go according to plan, but there is nothing wrong with that. -- MOVING ON IN UTAH
DEAR MOVING ON: I agree -- you are an intelligent young woman, and an emotionally healthy one as well. You have been able to recognize the positive in what many people consider a negative situation. Your letter illustrates that when one door closes, another one opens. Your attitude will serve you well in life.
For an excellent guide to becoming a better conversationalist and a more sociable person, order "How to Be Popular." Send a business-sized, self-addressed envelope, plus check or money order for $6 (U.S. funds) to: Dear Abby -- Popularity Booklet, P.O. Box 447, Mount Morris, IL 61054-0447. (Postage is included in the price.)