Abby 1-18

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“reign in blood”

Since: May 09

Braidwood, IL

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#1
Jan 18, 2013
 
DEAR ABBY: My elderly uncle and aunt have a son-in-law who -- to put it mildly -- spins tall tales. "Tom" has been everywhere, done everything and insists on telling anyone who will listen all about it. He speaks many languages fluently (until someone addresses him in one of them) and has had countless adventures in various countries, although he can't locate them on a map.

My uncle and aunt have bought two cars for their financially unstable daughter and this phony. Both times, Tom insisted on maintaining them himself (another of his legendary skills). Afterward, both cars required major repairs and eventually had to be scrapped.

After Tom's stint as a highly decorated Navy SEAL, he morphed into a genius at creating computer software, when he wasn't touring with a famous bluegrass band -- the name of which he can't remember.

I am concerned that my uncle and aunt are so awed by this man that they might one day allow him to manage their finances (there is no topic Tom is not an expert on) or let him fix the brakes on their vehicle. I think you know where I'm heading.

I have to bite my tongue to keep from saying, "Tom, Yokohama is a city, not a country. And if you're really best friends with Johnny Depp, why not invite him over so we can all meet him? Oh, and what you're passing off as Farsi is Pig Latin."

Is there a way to tactfully intervene before something awful happens without upsetting anyone?-- THE QUEEN OF ENGLAND

DEAR ROYAL HIGHNESS: Yes, if you do it privately, and say you are speaking up only because you are worried about their welfare. Then explain why you think Tom's stories don't hold water and point out that if he should volunteer any financial advice to them they should first run it past an unbiased non-family member such as their banker, lawyer, CPA or pastor before making any investments.

From your description, Tom appears to be a con man or compulsive liar. But whether your uncle and aunt choose to accept your input is up to them.

DEAR ABBY: I work at home and use my computer. Everyone who lives here is over 35.

My step-grandchildren visit regularly, and I have told the children's mother that I have no parental restrictions on my computer. She assured me not to worry about it because she has reinforced the rules of responsible Internet usage with them and is confident her children won't break the rules. As far as I know, they haven't.

Today, one of my brothers-in-law visited and brought along his young teenage daughter. I let her play on the computer, and he caught her in a chat room with an older teenage boy. Instead of blaming her, he attacked me for being too permissive with children and computers.

Do you think it is my responsibility to "protect" his teenager on my computer?-- JUST A GEEK IN SOUTH CAROLINA

DEAR JUST A GEEK: No, I do not. I suspect that you were attacked because of displaced anger. His daughter deserved the scolding; however, because he could not (for whatever reason) scold her, he directed his anger at you instead.

“...,to wit”

Since: Jun 09

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#2
Jan 18, 2013
 
Are chat rooms something which are filtered out for young teenagers? It sounds awfully broad.

Since: Jan 10

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#3
Jan 18, 2013
 

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L1: First of all, stop worring about your aunt and uncle. Second, have fun with it. Mess with the guy's head.

L2: Tell this relative to go fk himself. The daughter did nothing wrong.

“I Am Mine”

Since: Dec 08

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#4
Jan 18, 2013
 

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LW1: Are your aunt and uncle old and senile? No? Then what makes you think that you're the only one that can tell he's full of shit?

LW2: Remind him who the parent is.

“reign in blood”

Since: May 09

Chicago, IL

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#5
Jan 18, 2013
 
PEllen wrote:
Are chat rooms something which are filtered out for young teenagers? It sounds awfully broad.
I don't think the lw is an awful broad, but she said there were no parental controls or filters on her computer. And I sign into chat rooms as a 14 yo girl all the time, so no, it's not something that is filtered.

“reign in blood”

Since: May 09

Chicago, IL

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#6
Jan 18, 2013
 
1- I'm curious as to why you don't seem concerned for your cousin? But yes, if you think your aunt and uncle are being played, say something.

“I Am Mine”

Since: Dec 08

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#7
Jan 18, 2013
 
edogxxx wrote:
I'm curious as to why you don't seem concerned for your cousin?
Concerned in what way? Are you suggesting he has legitimate medical mental issues? If not, the only alternative I see is that he's just a full of shnit attention wh-0-re. Exactly waht is there to be concerned about?

Since: Dec 07

DuPage County

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#8
Jan 18, 2013
 

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1 If you mess withthe gu, it'll expose how fulla crap he is. If your relatives are too thick still to see through, you've done your dut.

2 Tell your BIL to take a long walk. Not you problem, it's his.

Since: Dec 07

DuPage County

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#9
Jan 18, 2013
 

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For Pete's sake:

1 If you mess with the guy, it'll expose how fulla crap he is. If your relatives are too thick still to see through it, you've done your duty.

2 Tell your BIL to take a long walk. Not your problem, it's his.

Since: Mar 09

United States

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#12
Jan 18, 2013
 
Mister Tonka wrote:
<quoted text>Concerned in what way? Are you suggesting he has legitimate medical mental issues? If not, the only alternative I see is that he's just a full of shnit attention wh-0-re. Exactly waht is there to be concerned about?
I think edog means the LW's aunt & uncle's daughter, the LW's cousin, who is married to Tom (the storyteller).
pde

Schaumburg, IL

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#10
Jan 18, 2013
 
Mister Tonka wrote:
<quoted text>Concerned in what way? Are you suggesting he has legitimate medical mental issues? If not, the only alternative I see is that he's just a full of shnit attention wh-0-re. Exactly waht is there to be concerned about?
Concerned that the cousin doesn't know her husband is full of it.

*shrug* My BIL is something like the person described (not as bad, he's more about exaggeration than pure making up of bs) and my sister seems to have her head on straight about what can be believed and what can't be believed.

“reign in blood”

Since: May 09

Chicago, IL

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#11
Jan 18, 2013
 
Mister Tonka wrote:
<quoted text>Concerned in what way? Are you suggesting he has legitimate medical mental issues? If not, the only alternative I see is that he's just a full of shnit attention wh-0-re. Exactly waht is there to be concerned about?
The lw is concerned that this guy is taking advantage of her aunt and uncle. If he's so full of sht and manipulative towards them, why isn't she concerned that her cousin, who is married to this guy, might be getting manipulated in the same way or even worse.

Since: Mar 09

United States

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#13
Jan 18, 2013
 
L2: What Abby said; you didn't do anything wrong, your BIL dropped the ball and is looking for someone else to blame. However, I do suggest that you stop letting everyone use your computer. Especially if you use it for work; what if someone inadvertently downloads a virus and fries your stuff? Or sees confidential/proprietary info (depending on what kind of work you do)?

“I Am Mine”

Since: Dec 08

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#14
Jan 18, 2013
 
edogxxx wrote:
<quoted text>
The lw is concerned that this guy is taking advantage of her aunt and uncle. If he's so full of sht and manipulative towards them, why isn't she concerned that her cousin, who is married to this guy, might be getting manipulated in the same way or even worse.
eh. i thought the dude was the couples son and therefore daughter was his sister. my mistake

Toj

“Equality”

Since: Jul 12

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#15
Jan 18, 2013
 

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L1: I like Red's and Saluki's take on this one. Mess with him good. That would be a blast.

L2: You should have calmly told him (b/c people look stupid when they get all angry and the other person stays calm) that his daughter's actions are her and his responsibility and not yours and he should be apologizing to you for using your computer in such a way.

But, then again -- perhaps he was just blowing off steam and you should ignore it but if he pulls that crap again then lay into him how he's full of crap.

Sam I Am

Huntingdon, TN

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#16
Jan 18, 2013
 
1. Step 1: Go to Tom, warn him the jig is up. Tell him that, going forward, he is getting called on his tall tales. Hopefully you have others in the family who will join in busting his balls. Step 2: Warn Tom that if any of his BS trickles over into your aunt and uncle's well-being, his well-being will be compromised. Subtlety won't work with this guy, he believes his own BS. Step 3: Get a bag of Reese's Pieces, make a trail that leads to a big box propped up by a stick attached to a string. When he reaches the box, pull the string and he'll be trapped. Then you can send him to be examined by "top men."

2. It's dad's problem, not yours.

Since: Jan 10

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#17
Jan 18, 2013
 
j_m_w wrote:
L2: What Abby said; you didn't do anything wrong, your BIL dropped the ball and is looking for someone else to blame. However, I do suggest that you stop letting everyone use your computer. Especially if you use it for work; what if someone inadvertently downloads a virus and fries your stuff? Or sees confidential/proprietary info (depending on what kind of work you do)?
And create a "public" log in that DOES have parental controls. I have a "public" log in on my computer at home, mostly leftover from when I had an overnight guest and I thought she might want to get online while I was out.

Since: Mar 09

United States

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#18
Jan 18, 2013
 
RedheadwGlasses wrote:
<quoted text>
And create a "public" log in that DOES have parental controls. I have a "public" log in on my computer at home, mostly leftover from when I had an overnight guest and I thought she might want to get online while I was out.
Even better. I wouldn't know how to do that, but I would assume that someone who works from home (who presumably is her own IT department) would.

“Licensed to Ill”

Since: Aug 08

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#19
Jan 18, 2013
 

Judged:

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LW1: That letter was funny.

Um, I had have a private chat with your aunt and uncle and point out that he is a charlatan and why you know this. I could not stand to be around someone like that.

LW2: He's wrong, but I say just don't let her use the computer anymore.

Since: Jan 10

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#20
Jan 18, 2013
 
j_m_w wrote:
<quoted text>
Even better. I wouldn't know how to do that, but I would assume that someone who works from home (who presumably is her own IT department) would.
It's so easy, I figured it out with no effort (and it's not something I otherwise would know how to find out on my own). So yeah, someone in IT should be able to handle it.

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