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by Abigail Van Buren

Happy Smartphone User Stops Short of Becoming an Addict

DEAR ABBY: My father recently purchased a truck for our farm. It's old and in poor shape, but it was worth the $2,000 he paid for it.

The truck was fine until my father used it to pick me and my siblings up from school. When the other kids saw the bumperless truck, they began calling my little brother "Farmer Boy" and made cow noises at us. My mother isn't OK with it either. He picked her up from work in it, which embarrassed her in front of her co-workers.

It's not like we don't have other vehicles. Both my parents have nice, functional cars. Abby, please help me figure out a way to tell my dad without hurting his feelings. -- FREAKED OUT IN FRANKFORT, KY.

DEAR FREAKED OUT: People should not be judged because of the clothes they wear or the vehicles they drive, but sometimes they are by shallow people who should know better. I think you could get your message across by telling your father how your brother's classmates reacted when they saw him pick up your brother. What they did was cruel. Leave it up to your mother to tell him she felt embarrassed in front of her co-workers. I'm sure she can get the message across.