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ADVICE: Dear Angel

My 10 year old son just had a birthday party at our local bowling place. He invited 9 of his closest male friends at a cost of $15.00 per child plus our son, of course. One of the boy guests had a friend of his sleep over and his mother brought that boy's friend and two siblings of one of the other invited boys came. Plus, three parents stayed.

...there is no law or rule or custom that says every child MUST have a birthday party EVERY year.

We were put in the position of paying for the three extra uninvited children and we had to buy two extra pizzas for the uninvited parents. Thus a $150 party escalated to $225, all plus taxes.

None of the freeloaders seemed at all embarrassed and we were trying to be gracious but the extra $80 odd dollars really hurt.

Other than not have any more parties for our son or doing strict guard duty at the door, is there any way out of this gate crasher situation?

Tapped Out For The Week

Dear Tapped:

You were gracious and handled this situation properly. The party crashing parents and the mother of the friend with the sleepover guest and the parents of the two siblings are all incredibly crude and rude.

Although none of these crude and rude people know or care, you have built up credit for your actions somewhere and will be rewarded some time, some place. The Angel promises you.

In the meantime:

1. You can make future invitations more specific: "Only Billy is invited. Extra attendees (parents, siblings or friends of Billy) will be required to pay $15.00 plus tax each."

2. With 9 invitees, you got 6 crashers (2/3rds extra) so for your son's next party you might only invite 5 of his friends and particularly leave out the children with the parents who stayed for pizza and the kid with the sibs. This is a form of tough love (for those parents.)

3. Or you can suck it up and plan on a $250 party for your son.

All parents should be aware that there is no law or rule or custom that says every child MUST have a birthday party EVERY year. I didn't and the majority of the people reading this column probably didn't either.

Blessings from the Angel to all parents who break free from this tyranny.




Short But Good


There were three mischievious boys in Bali who had to use an outhouse outside their school and they hated it sooo bad. One day it started to rain really hard and it got the bank all slippery and wet so after school they decided to push the outhouse off the hill. They did it and the next day at school their teacher asked if they pushed off the outhouse.

They said: "Yes."

The teacher told them to line up to get their whipping.

The boys said: "George Washington didn't get in trouble when he chopped down the cherry tree because he was honest."

The teacher said: "But George Washington's father wasn't in the cherry tree when he chopped it down."


I dialed a number and got the following recording: "I am not available right now, but thank you for caring enough to call. I am making some changes in my life. Please leave a message after the beep. If I do not return your call, you are one of the changes."


At pilots training back in the Air Corps they taught us, "Always try to keep the number of landings you make equal to the number of take offs you make."


Little Tommy had been to a birthday party at a friend's house. Knowing his sweet tooth, Tommy's mother looked straight into his eyes and said, "I hope you didn't ask for a second piece of cake." "No, but I asked Mrs. Smith for the recipe so you could make some like it, and she gave me two more pieces without asking."


My wife and I had words, but I didn't get to use mine.


As my five year old son and I were headed to McDonald's one day, we passed a car accident. Usually when we see something terrible like that, we say a prayer for those who might be hurt, so I pointed and said to my son, "We should pray." From the back seat I heard his earnest request: "Please, God, don't let those cars block the entrance to McDonald's."


Frustration is trying to find your glasses without your glasses.


Blessed are those who can give without remembering and take without forgetting.


The irony of life is that, by the time you're old enough to know your way around, you're not going anywhere.


God made man before woman so as to give him time to think of an answer for her first question.


I was always taught to respect my elders, but it keeps getting harder to find one.

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