Saturday, June 29, 2013

"Diaper" Wearing Mom Has Trouble Potty-Training Daughter

Dear Readers:

I am on vacation this week! Please enjoy this classic letter that you may have missed the first time!


Dear Tazi:

I started wearing adult protective underwear (aka “adult diapers”) when I was pregnant with my daughter and having bladder control problems. Tazi, they were so comfortable I did not want to stop using them, even after I no longer needed them! I rarely soil them because I wear them for comfort, not protection, but they are a lifesaver when I am stuck in traffic and can’t “hold it in” any longer!

“Emily” is now three and I never knew she noticed my protective underwear use until now. I have been trying without success to toilet train her for over a year now when the other day she screamed that “if Mommy can wear diapers so can I!” I was terribly embarrassed because she screamed it in front of several people in the children’s department store where we were shopping. Blushing I explained to onlookers that she must be confusing sanitary pads with diapers. Several people laughed and I was able to leave without humiliation.

Tazi, I am a busy work-from-home Mom. I do not have the time to fight my daughter on this issue. I know she needs to toilet train, but how is that going to happen if I am not able to set the example she needs? Do I have to give up my comfort for Emily’s developmental health?

Comfortable, Not Incontinent

Dear Comfortable, Not Incontinent:

Yours is one of the more unusual problems I have come across in my column. Could it be that your regular underpants are so uncomfortable because you are not wearing the proper size and/or style? Adult protective undergarments are styled to fit like real underpants, and are designed in the style of cotton briefs. For the sake of your daughter’s developmental health, you may want to try wearing cotton briefs in the proper size. Women’s underpants are sized as such: 5 = small; 6 = medium; 7 = large; 8 = X-Large; 9 = XX-Large, and so on and so forth. Full-brief panties should fit so that they sit at your natural waist without having to tug on them; they should fit in the rear so they do not pull up when you sit down or sag when you sit.

This is an example of a pair of ill-fitting panties

This is how you rock cotton undies

It’s time to face the truth: you’ve been busted by your three year old. You even admit in your letter that there are times you let loose when stuck in traffic, rather than hold it until you reach a rest stop. If you want to teach your daughter appropriate behavior you will have to teach by example. I suggest you make a trip to JC Penney, Kmart, or some other adult department store and make a presentation of buying “big girl” panties for both you and Emily, informing Emily of your decision that it is time for both of you to start wearing them. The one allowable exception to wearing them is if you are having bladder control problems or if you simply must wear them on a long car ride.

If you find that regular underwear is simply too uncomfortable to wear, regardless of style; size; or fabric, you can discreetly go back to wearing your protective undergarments; just make certain that your daughter is not aware of your decision or you will be changing her diapers until she is old enough to change her own.


Ask Tazi! is ghostwritten by a human with a Bachelors of Arts in Communications. Tazi-Kat is not really a talking feline.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

"Nice Guy" Thinks All Women Want "Bad Boys"

Dear Tazi:

I like to think of myself as a nice guy. I am polite and well-mannered, and I keep myself well-groomed. I am chivalrous but not sexist and although I am not wealthy I pay my bills on time and drive an acceptable looking car. So why can't I attract women?

When I go on a date, I treat a lady with respect and do my best to keep up my end of a lively conversation. Things always seem to go well, but I am never able to make it into third date territory. Whenever I try to get past a second date, the ladies tell me that I am a nice guy, but they just don't feel a romantic spark for me.

I will usually wait a month or two before looking up a woman on Facebook to see if she is interested in reconnecting, and it always seems that she is with some bad boy that makes her "sooooooo happy"! Why are women always attracted to jerks while nice guys like me finish last?

Nice Guy

Dear Nice Guy:

How can you tell just by looking at a Facebook picture that a man is a "bad boy"? Is it the goatee? The leather jacket? Maybe he rides a motorcycle? You cannot judge a person by how they look in a photo; for all you know these "bad boys" could be lawyers and accountants. I realize that you are coming from a place of bitterness, but your knee-jerk reaction may be showing through on your dates. Women can be very perceptive.

You say you are having trouble reaching "third-date territory". Do you mean you are having trouble securing a third date or are you using a veiled term for sex? No woman wants to be pushed into sex, so if you are assuming it is going to happen on or by the third date this could be why women are giving you the brush-off. Rather than rush things, relax and let things develop naturally.

Women are not always "attracted to jerks"; women are attracted to men with an exciting personality. Do you have one of those, or are you so middle-of-the-road you don't know which side of it you want? You may think you are doing your best to keep up your end of a lively conversation, but for whom is it "lively"? Are you certain that the topics you bring up are of interest to your date, as well as you?

It is obvious from the number of dates that you have that you can attract women; you just can't hold their interest. I suggest that you ask a few of your female friends why women who seem interested tend to lose interest after just a few dates. Ask them to be honest - it may be painful, but at least you will know what it wrong. One last thought it s that it may not be you with the issue but the women you are choosing. If you are going for style over substance you are going to lose every time. Seek a balance of both in a woman, and work on being a balance of both yourself.


Ask Tazi! is ghostwritten by a human with a Bachelors of Arts in Communications. Tazi-Kat is not really a talking feline.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Antisocial Attitude Makes A Bad Customer Service Job Worse

Dear Tazi:

I am finishing my junior year of college and am stuck in between work and school. I am not yet qualified to work a paying summer job in my major so I am stuck working a menial customer-service oriented seasonal job that I hate.

The job itself is not challenging; I just hate working with the public. People can be so stupid! I hate having to answer the same exact question five different ways before someone gets it, only to have someone else come along and ask the exact same question. The tedium is getting on my nerves, but all I can do is smile and be nice. It's not the customer's fault that my job is so miserable (well, sometimes it is) but I can't help but dislike serving them anyway.

I am not sure I can continue this through graduate school, and am thinking of dropping out of college and taking a full-time job in a warehouse or somewhere where I don't have to interact with the public. This would not be a forever move; only long enough for me to save enough money that I can take classes year-round to finish my education sooner and get a real job. My parents are afraid that if I drop out of school I will never go back, that's how much faith they have in me. I don't understand why they can't see how miserable I am! All they say is that summer is only a few months and that I need to experience my bad job so I can appreciate a good job when one comes along.

Tazi, can you think of a way to convince my parents to see things my way? They are incredibly old-fashioned.

Hate My Job

P.S. I am paying my way through school, but I live with my parents which is why they think they can control my life.

Dear Hates My Job:

While your parents have a very good point, it appears that you have experienced enough of your bad job to appreciate a good one when it comes along. So why would you want to take a job in a warehouse, where you will be doing backbreaking work for average pay? Unless you get hired in a union shop working in a warehouse will not be much of an improvement over what you are doing now. Additionally, you might not be able to save much towards your education if your parents demand rent from you since you would no longer be in school.

I suggest you stick it out this summer and work towards finding a paying internship or fellowship in your academic field for next summer. There are plenty of opportunities available in all sorts of areas, you just have to look for them. Your school's Career Services department will be able to assist you with such a search.

There is such a  thing as being too customer social!

You should also talk to your parents about how miserable you are at your current job. Do not simply whine to them that you hate it - they already know that. Make a list of concrete reasons why you dislike your job and the effect it is having on your mental health. Explain to them that you do not want to drop out of school, but that you see no other way to make financing your education work while holding onto your mental balance. Perhaps they can assist you with a short-term loan to cover your expenses until you are able to find a new job and pay them back. If not, you are going to have to do as they suggest and tough it out until the end of the summer while appreciating the fact that you have a paying summer job, which is a lot more than a lot of college students have in this economy.


Ask Tazi! is ghostwritten by a human with a Bachelors of Arts in Communications. Tazi-Kat is not really a talking feline.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Husband's Lack Of Wedding Ring Upsets Wife, Interests Other Women

Dear Tazi:

My husband and I are having a disagreement and I feel he is being too stubborn to see my side while he feels I am being over-reactive.  "James" refuses to wear a wedding ring. He says it chaffs his hand when he is writing (he is left handed) and it is very uncomfortable for him to wear so he feels he should not have to wear it. He wears his college ring on his right ring finger, so it is not like he is adverse to wearing a ring - just the one that symbolizes the vows we took and our lifetime commitment to each other. (I have asked him to wear his wedding ring on his right finger, but he said he would feel naked without his precious college ring!).

Last night we went out for the first time since our son was born two months ago. It was supposed to be a pleasant evening, but was ruined by James' refusal to wear his wedding ring. While waiting for our table at the restaurant, we were sitting at the bar so James could watch the hockey playoff game that was on TV. I stepped away to use the ladies' room only to find James chatting with another woman when I returned!

The woman was very sweet, but I was in no mood for her politeness. She told me she was "chatting with [my] boyfriend about the game" and asked me if I liked hockey, too. I responded that James was not my boyfriend but my husband and that we had just had a baby! She apologized for the confusion and explained that she meant no offense - that he wasn't wearing a ring so she assumed I was his girlfriend!

The woman then tried to sooth my ruffled feathers by asking me about the baby (boy or girl, how old, etc.); asking me if I am a first time Mom and sympathizing with the new stresses and lack of sleep; and then offered to buy both of us a drink to congratulate us on the birth of our first child. James was all ready to accept (which made me even angrier) but our table was called. By that point I was in no mood to be out and just wanted to go home, so we did.

When we got home, James started in on me about how rude I was to "that nice woman who offered to buy us drinks". He told me that her husband is away on business and that the bartender is her brother-in-law so there was no way she was hitting on him. I told him he had to be awfully chatty with her to know so much, but he explained that the bartender was the one talking to her, not him; he had simply overheard. I say he was eavesdropping on the conversation of a woman he found attractive!

Tazi, I am insisting that James wear his wedding ring - period. He has offered to wear it when we go out somewhere or when he goes out with the guys (he is in a bowling league), but I do not believe this is enough; he is not my part-time husband and I do not want him to act like one. James insists that my all or nothing demand is unreasonable and so is my reaction to the woman at the bar. He brought up the fact that I did not wear my rings during the last trimester of my pregnancy, but that was because they did not fit - my fingers were swollen! Now who is being unreasonable!

Tazi, I went through the pain of labor for this man! The least he can do is put up with some mild irritation until he adjusts to wearing a wedding ring. Don't you think so, too?

Feeling Jilted

Dear Feeling Jilted:

First I want to say congratulations on the birth of your baby boy! Being a new parent is an exciting but stressful time, as I am sure you are discovering. I am also sure that you are experiencing a lot of postpartum hormonal changes and maybe even feeling just a little bit insecure about your post-pregnancy body. Could these feelings be coloring your reaction to seeing your husband talking to a woman about a hockey game?

The woman you describe sounds like a lovely lady who felt simply awful about her assumption that you were James' girlfriend and not his wife, but I do not get the impression that she was hitting on him - especially since her brother-in-law was standing right there tending bar. Often times at restaurants where there is a bar area there is also a jovial camaraderie among the patrons - both regulars and those who they have just met. Polite conversation between two people of the opposite sex does not mean there is a flirtation going on; it simply means that there is a welcoming spirit present.

I can understand your concern that your husband is purposely trying to hide his marital status in order to attract women, and not knowing him I cannot make a judgement on this matter - only you can. Do you honestly suspect your husband is interested in cheating on you? So interested that he will take the five minutes that you are in the ladies' room to try and score another woman's phone number? If this is the case, I strongly suggest both marital and legal counseling!

For argument's sake, let's say that your husband doe snot like wearing his wedding ring because it chaffs him. Some people suffer from sensory perception disorder; your husband may be one of them. These people have super-developed sensory nerves that make them very susceptible to touch. One result of this disorder is that people who have it cannot wear clothing that is in any way restrictive or binding because it makes them tense and causes anxiety (from mild to severe). While your husband may not have this ailment, try to understand his position. While chaffing is not as painful as labor, over time it can become both physically and mentally painful.

I like your husband's compromise, but I think it can be taken a step further. If he has his ring sized 1/4 to 1/2 size too large for his finger it should reduce the chaffing while keeping the ring secure on his finger. For now, please accept his compromise as a sign that he is willing to meet you halfway. In time, wearing a ring on his left hand may get easier for him. If it does, ask him to wear it more often. Eventually your husband will reach a point where his hand does not feel right without his wedding ring - just as his right hand does not feel right without his college ring.


Ask Tazi! is ghostwritten by a human with a Bachelors of Arts in Communications. Tazi-Kat is not really a talking feline.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Disappointment In The Bedroom Can Be A Deal-Breaker

Dear Tazi:

I have always had a healthy and creative sex life. I am not completely uninhibited, but I am not a prude, either. My current boyfriend “Don” does not believe in creativity in the bedroom; missionary position is the only position he will use, and sex must take place in the bedroom, after dark, with the lights out. Toys and other accessories are not allowed.

Tazi, I love my boyfriend sexually I find him quite boring and I am feeling unfulfilled. I am not sure if I should end the relationship over this. My friends all tell me I would be a fool to leave a guy as wonderful as Don – and he is wonderful in so many ways, and would make a wonderful husband – but I just can’t get pas this problem.

I have tried to talk to Don about our sex life and my need for more, but he tells me that my (minimul) requests are out of the question and tells me that I am “kinky”. I do not think my erotic requests cross that line, and am frustrated that Don is not even willing to try something new. Am I being unreasonable, or do I have a legit concern?

Adventurous Abby

Dear Adventurous Abby:

There is an old joke that asks “what is the difference between erotic and kinky?” The answer is simple: erotic is using a feather; kinky is using the entire chicken. While there is a wide range between the two, each person has their own sexual mores with which they are comfortable, and trying to push them outside their comfort zone will end in awkwardness and discomfort.

If you and Don have not yet sought couples counseling, you may want to do that if you are serious about staying together or even getting married. I do not believe that you are being unreasonable or making an issue out of nothing because this issue is important to you. In fact, sexual compatibility is important to many (if not all) couples, so you are not alone in your frustration.

You may have to accept the fact that Don will not change, even with gentle encouragement to try new things. If you are unable to convince him to consider your side of things and you are unable to live with things the way they are than I suggest you do the right thing – by Don and by yourself – and end the relationship. Unhappiness in the bedroom has a way of spilling over into other areas of life, ending the relationship on a sour note instead of allowing people to part as friends.


Ask Tazi! is ghostwritten by a human with a Bachelors of Arts in Communications. Tazi-Kat is not really a talking feline.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

RePost - Tazi's Corner #7: Searching For Atticus, By Guest Writer Tazi's Mommie

Hello Readers!

I am taking a vacation day, and instead of leaving Mommie in charge of this week's edition of Tazi's Corner (because she might mess it up on me!), I have decided to print a classic edition that I know was successful. Enjoy the "freepeat".


Snuggles from AC,

Tazi's Corner
Life As Your Pet Sees It!

Searching For Atticus
by Guest Writer Tazi's Mommie

I consider myself to be a Writer, not only because it is what I have done professionally for so many years, but because once upon a time I made a living doing it. How many people are lucky enough to be able to say that? How many people are lucky enough to have a reason to induce a sugar-fueled madness through a Hershey bar and a large bottle of Mountain Dew, let alone induce this stupor at the office? My old boss used to tell me to do what I must to keep my creativity flowing. The sacrifices I would make!

Over time, even sugar is not enough to take a wrecking ball to writer's block; sometimes, a different kind of inspiration is needed. Who inspires me to write? The most influential man in my life - as a writer and as a person - is not a real person at all, but a literary character named Atticus Finch.

Ironically, Atticus came into my life the same summer my real father left it; the summer I was 12-years-old. I remember that summer well; it was the season that followed the spring that my dog got hit by a car. Rascal lived, minus her lower-left hindquarter, and her resilience taught me that it was true what people say: what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. She learned how to run like the wind on only three legs when it came time to chase after me on my bike, as well as how to play the part of the brave invalid when in view of neighbors with dog treats. The world may have shattered a bone or two in her body, but it did not break her spirit. I wish I could say I had the same emotional fortitude as my dog did that summer, but that would almost be a lie – almost; because at some point that summer I became acquainted with Atticus Finch. Who knew that a summer reading assignment would come to have such an influence on my life?

The school bell rang shortly after we had received our reading assignments, dismissing us to an awaiting ice cream truck and a world of summer freedoms; our summer homework assignments already forgotten, if just for the moment – our parents would see to it that we promptly remembered them. Although our choices for entertainment were endless; our reading selections were not. Accustomed to the usual Beverly Cleary and Judy Blume stories of our childhood past, we were a bit frightened by what the seventh grade had in store for us, as our assigned options appeared to reflect the démonté of our childhood.

I can still recall my friend Rachel repetitively droning on about how she planned to read To Kill a Mockingbird because she had heard it was a really good book. She could not tell me anything about the story and I, who was making my way through the anthologies of Stephen King and J.R.R. Tolkien, thought the title To Kill a Mockingbird sounded far too much like the children’s poem “Who Killed Cock Robin?” I bought the book anyway because compared to my other choices – The Grapes of Wrath, The Old Man and the Sea and Animal Farm – it seemed to be the least offensive to my pre-teen sensibilities. I considered myself to be far too mature to read about talking animals! Once in hand I promptly decided that To Kill a Mockingbird was not worth my time. This opinion was based on the book’s plain, un-illustrated, mustard-yellow cover. Yes, bibliophile that I was (and still am), I judged a book by its cover.

My copy of To Kill a Mockingbird – now creased and careworn – sat on my bedroom desk until the start of August which was when I realized that, like it or not, my mother was not going to allow me to buy the Cliff’s Notes version of it; the local librarian looked positively apoplectic when I had asked if she had a copy of the shelves. Already miserable because my father had decided to take Paul Simon’s advice and “slip out the back, Jack” I figured my summer could get no worse. I opened to the first page and read these words: “When he was nearly thirteen, my brother Jem got his arm badly broken at the elbow.”

“My brother Jem,” I thought. “Isn’t Jem a girl’s name?” At the time Jem and the Holograms was Hasbro’s answer to Mattel’s Barbie. I read a little further and discovered that the character of Scout was a girl and grew curious as to how people down South lived. Being a native New Englander, I had only heard stories of the Deep South; none of them all that kind to Confederates. As I got deeper and deeper into the tome that was my summer reading assignment, something inside me stirred. My child-like sense of justice – of right and wrong being either/or but never both – flared inside of me. Why did these people want to hurt Atticus? What was wrong with them? They were supposed to be his friends! Why were they siding against Tom Robinson, an innocent man “whose only true sin was pity for white woman”?

By the time I reached the end of the book I was so disgusted with Maycomb County that the enormity of what “Boo” Radley had done completely escaped me – which is why I read To Kill a Mockingbird again the very next summer; and the summer after that; and the summer after that; and every summer to this day. It was on or around my twelfth reading of the book that I caught on to the fact that Jem did not kill Bob Ewell. I cannot understand why I did not catch on sooner. Perhaps it was my outrage at the sense of injustice I felt; perhaps it was my anger over being told (by native Alabamans) that not much has changed in Alabama since the Civil War, and that Harper Lee’s story could be as true today as it was when she wrote it. I think the real reason it took so long for me to process the truth about who killed Bob Ewell was that Atticus could not process it. Over the years, I had learned to look at Atticus as the father-figure I needed in my life. To me, Atticus was a God among men; His only weakness his blind love for his children. He was a man who believed in his children; a man who raised them to become the pillars of justice he sought for the future of humankind. To a child who had been abandoned by her father, Atticus made a fine surrogate; a living example of all that was good in a world full of ugliness.

I have spent the better part of my life searching for Atticus, inside and outside of myself. I have never giving in to the pessimistic view that such a person can only exist in fiction; that the real world would have jaded him by now, worn his ideals down to a stub of their original grace or corrupted him in one of the many political trade-offs that occur in order to make the business of politics run, and keep the politics of business in check. I know he is out there, though, for I have caught glimpses of him. It is these glimpses that keep my hopes alive. I know that Atticus lives; he lives in the hearts and the minds of all who seek to emulate him.

It was the summer of my seventeenth reading of To Kill a Mockingbird that a young boy I watched over picked up a copy of it for himself. He was eleven years old, a year younger than I was when I first felt the magic of Harper Lee’s masterpiece, and like me he was too young to process all of the goings-on in the world that Atticus, Jem, and Scout inhabited. Small for his age, he curled in my lap and cried at the injustice of Tom Robinson’s conviction and death; at the blatant prejudice that engulfed the human psyche. As he dried his tears, he looked up at me with watery eyes and said, “When I grow up I want to be just like Atticus!” Holding back tears of pride, I kissed his forehead; rocked him gently; and told him I could think of no nobler calling. To this day, I still cannot.

--Tazi's Mommie

Ask Tazi! is ghostwritten by a human with a Bachelors of Arts in Communications. Tazi-Kat is not really a talking feline.

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Is A Bad Haircut Worth Ending A Friendship?

Dear Tazi:

I am out of work and short on money. My best friend is in hairdressing school and needed people to practice on for her upcoming testing. I thought we could help each other out by having her cut, color, and style my hair. It was a horrible, horrible mistake.

"Tanya" told me she was at the top of her class, but I am finding this hard to believe looking at the disaster that is my hair. The cut was lopsided, so she trimmed a little off the other side to even things out and only made it worse. Long story short, I now have a bob. It is stylish, but it s not what I wanted. I can, however, deal with it; hair grows back. My problem is the color.

I told Tanya I wanted to color my hair auburn. My hair is naturally a medium brown and I wanted to jazz it up a bit. Tanya applied the color, but I am not certain she mixed it right - she swears she did - and instead of auburn hair I have orange hair! I look like a giant carrot! Tanya insists that I must be using inferior shampoos and hair styling products and that any residual product in my hair must have reacted with the tint and voila! Orange hair.

When I saw the final look, I burst into tears. Tanya was insulted and told me that she worked hard on my hair and the least I could do was be grateful for the free cut and color. I kicked her out of my house and we have not spoken since. That was two weeks ago.

Tazi, I miss my best friend, but I feel like she lied to me and took advantage of me. A part of me wants to let bygones be bygones and a part of me wants to call up her hairdressing school and tell them what she did to my hair. I feel like i will only be saving others future misery, but losing my friendship. On the other hand, at what cost do I save my friendship with Tanya?

Carrot Top

Dear Carrot Top:

Have you thought to call Tanya's school and ask if Tanya's reasoning - inferior beauty products reacting with the tint - is reasonable; that this possibly could happen? I suggest you contact Tanya and offer the olive branch of peace - as you said, hair grows back. Is a bad dye job really worth ending the relationship with your "best friend"?

Is Cyndi Lauper the only one who can pull off this look?

I advise you and Tanya to go to her teacher - together - and explain what happened, with both the cut and the color. The teacher may be able to do something with your hair to tone down the color and make it more complimentary to your natural tones, as well as teach Tanya how to fix an issue like this should it ever happen again. You are not the first woman to get a bad dye job and you will not be the last. Try to remember that while wearing a hat to protect your face from the summer sun...and your hair from staring eyes.


Ask Tazi! is ghostwritten by a human with a Bachelors of Arts in Communications. Tazi-Kat is not really a talking feline.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Nosy Mother Gets An Eyeful

Dear Tazi:

I am 34 years old, not married, and have been with my boyfriend over three years. I have no desire to get married or live with him because I enjoy my life just the way it is and he is perfectly happy, too. My problem is my mother; she has to be the nosiest person on Earth!

When Mom comes over to visit, she will routinely go through my mail (don't tell me to hide it; she manages to find it), rifle through my bathroom cabinets and the vanity drawers (she claims she is looking for an aspirin, which she knows I do not keep in the house due to an aspirin allergy); and search my coat pockets (she supposedly needs a cough drop, but when I offer one it is the wrong brand and/or flavor).

Last visit, Mom came by the morning after my boyfriend had spent the night. We had been intimate the night before, and we always use protection - which Mom found while rifling through my garbage because she couldn't find her reading glasses. When I asked her why she needed them, she told me that she thought she found a box of condoms in my underwear drawer (where she was looking to see if I needed new cotton briefs; I have not worn cotton briefs since I was a child).  When I told her that she had in fact found condoms, she flipped out and told me that she did not raise me this way, and went on and on about how disappointed in me she was.

Tazi, I flipped out on her. I have had it with her snooping and I told her that if she had not been snooping through my stuff she would not have come across anything that displeased her. I told her that I am a grown woman, not a child, and that I am in a committed relationship and that I will have sex if I choose to have it. Mom got very upset and left my house without saying goodbye. Shortly thereafter, I got a call from my father asking me what I did to make my mother so upset; she had come home in tears, wailing about how she was a failure as a mother.

When I told my father - the edited version - of how Mom had been snooping again and did not like what she had found, he sympathized with me but told me that she is still my mother and that I should have respected her and that I should apologize to her for upsetting her! I told my father I would not apologize, that had mother not been abusing my privacy she would never have gotten upset and that I am the one who is owed an apology. Things have deteriorated from there...

The next day I got a call from Mom's priest asking me if I had anything to confess; I hung up on him. My boyfriend is just rolling his eyes at the whole situation and suggesting that the next time I stay at his place; my father thinks the whole situation is ridiculous but is pressuring me to apologize to Mom to keep the peace, and Mom is not speaking to me since I hung up on the priest.

The summer is here, and parties will be occurring all season long. I would like to put all of this behind me so I can enjoy the summer with my family, but I just don't know how!

Sexually Active Adult

Dear Sexually Active Adult:

You may be an adult, but to your mother you are still her little girl - which is why she wants to see you in Fruit of the Loom and not Victoria's Secret. Since you are an adult woman living on your own you have every right to demand privacy from your mother's snooping. This is only half the issue, though.

Only kitties are sexy enough to rock the tighty whities!

Personally, I do not think she was at all shocked at finding a box of condoms (and their used remains) in your apartment; I think this is what she has been snooping for all along, and so long as she found none she could continue to live in her fantasy world where you are still her little girl. I do not believe that you owe your mother an apology for how you choose to live your life; I do believe that you owe her an apology for flying off the handle at her and that she owes you an apology for invading your privacy.

Since it appears that you will have to be the bigger person here, I suggest you call your mother to let her know that you would like to clear the air between the two of you. Tell her that she is not a failure as a parent and point out all of the ways in which her parenting has helped you to become a successful, independent, woman. If she insists on harping on your sex life, tell her that the subject is off-limits. I sincerely doubt that this is a subject she will want to bring up at parties when people ask why the two of you are not speaking, so gently remind her of this fact.

When you feel ready to mollify both of your parents by apologizing for losing your temper with your mother then do it - do not offer an insincere apology just to get it out of the way. If you are having trouble reaching this point remind yourself that whenever we lose our temper with someone, we lose more than just our self-control; we lose the respect of those who witness it. Tell your mother that when she is ready to offer an apology for invading your privacy that you are ready to accept it - and mean it. Family counseling may help both of you reach this point in time to enjoy a summer full of fun celebrations.


Ask Tazi! is ghostwritten by a human with a Bachelors of Arts in Communications. Tazi-Kat is not really a talking feline.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Is Flirting Cheating? Does It Promise Commitment?

Dear Tazi:

I am both angry and heartbroken right now. I have been in love with a cousin of my friend for several years. We have always flirted with each other, but I now think it meant more to me than it did to him. He was married when I met him, so I kept my distance. When he and his wife split, I decided I would wait a reasonable amount of time after his separation – six months – before asking him on a date. Three months after he moved out of his house he introduced his new girlfriend to his family! He had only met her a few weeks before, so as hurt as I was I didn’t think it would last; that was five years ago.

“Chad” continues to flirt with me when “Katie” is not around, but when she is he completely ignores me. Katie does not like me because she thinks I am after her man. I admit that I come on strong around him, even when she is there, but if only she knew the whole story! The last time I saw Chad, I asked him straight if he was going to leave Katie, like he has been saying he wants to for the past few years. Chad reassured me that he did, but said that he was waiting for Katie to recover from cervical cancer. I loved him even more for his dedication to standing by a woman in sickness, because I thought he would do the same for me.

Katie recently missed an engagement party that Chad and I both attended, and we danced together the entire evening. I found myself imagining that It was our engagement party! When I asked about him and Katie, he told me she was not well enough to attend and thanked me for my concern about her. I was not asking out of concern for her!

A few weeks after the party I saw Chad with Katie at a First Communion party, and she looked fantastic! I overheard her telling the engaged couple that she was sorry that she missed their party but that she was finishing work on her Master’s thesis in preparation for her graduation this summer. I was very surprised to hear that she was finishing a graduate program, especially while she was supposedly so sick, and I asked her about it. She told me that she has been cancer-free for almost a year now, and that she continued to go to school during her illness since chemotherapy was not needed. How sick could she have been???

That afternoon at the party Chad was glued to Katie’s side, looking at her like she was the only woman in the world. The only time he even spoke to me was when he was taking a group picture and asked me to “move into the picture or out of it” since I was halfway out of the camera view. I have never been so hurt! I am disgusted that Chad has lied to me like this, and think I am owed an explanation and the truth about if he is ever going to leave Katie. Where do I go from here, Tazi? I am considering telling Katie everything!

Doubly Duped

Dear Doubly Duped:

While I am sorry that your heart is breaking, this is the risk you took by chasing after an unavailable man. I realize that you loved Chad first, but even before he met Katie he was unavailable to you because he was married. If he was truly interested in being with you – and not just looking for a boost to his ego – he would have made his move before meeting Katie. This is a harsh truth you will need to accept.

Unlike most humans, we cats know we are sexy beasts!
You need to ask yourself what telling Katie everything will accomplish. What exactly is “everything”? Have you ever kissed Chad or had any kind of physical contact beyond dancing? Was your flirtation light and playful or full of sexual promises? Some couples do not mind if one partner flirts, so long as they do not cross the line; others consider flirting a form of infidelity. Are you hoping that Katie will consider Chad’s flirting cheating? If you were able to break them up, do you think that Chad will be grateful to you or angry? Be honest with yourself. Furthermore, how will your friend react when she discovers that you are the one who caused trouble in her cousin’s relationship?

Some men enjoy flirting. Just as a woman may be completely committed to her partner, some still find it nice to be complimented by another man – even though they have no intentions of leaving their partner, it is nice to know that others still find them attractive. Since men are generally the aggressors when it comes to asking someone on a date, some will flirt. Even though they have no plans on leaving – or cheating on – their partner, it is still nice to know that they can gain the attention of an attractive woman. [Ed. Note: In the case of a same-sex relationship, change the pronouns accordingly]. It appears that this is what has been happening between you and Chad.

While I personally find Chad’s behavior hurtful – to both you and Katie – I do not think you should sink to his level and attempt to destroy him as he has destroyed you. Instead, take the high road; the next time Chad tries to flirt with you let him know that your time is reserved for men who are serious about you, and not lying flirts. Then, walk away. Until that time, try to find comfort among good friends, sad movies, and a carton of ice cream. My preference is chocolate chip.



P.S. A localized cancer, like cervical cancer, may not always require chemotherapy. That dsoes not, however, mean the cancer is not serious! Shame on you for suggesting that!

Ask Tazi! is ghostwritten by a human with a Bachelors of Arts in Communications. Tazi-Kat is not really a talking feline.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Man Or Woman, A Nurse Is A Nurse!

Dear Tazi:

I am a Nurse. I am also a man. As you might imagine, I get a lot of attitude about being a :"male Nurse", like my profession somehow makes me less of a man. I have had people go so far as to ask me why I didn't go to med school to become a doctor, "like men are supposed to do". As you can imagine, my response to this is complicated but starts with the fact that I had no desire to be a Doctor; I like being a Nurse and have no plans on changing my profession.

I recently passed my one year anniversary with my current employer and am now eligible for tuition assistance should I return to school for further training, certifications, or to work towards a Masters' Degree, which is my eventual goal. I want to get my M.S.N. so I can work as a Nurse Practitioner, maybe even going for my PhD. My family does not seem to understand why I just don't apply for admission to medical school. I try to explain to them that there are huge differences between a career in Nursing and a career as an MD, but they seem to think that Nurses do the job of a C.N.A. My mother is not so bad, but my father and my older brothers are unbearable.

Tazi, I am not sure why I am writing to you. Maybe for validation? Maybe so you can inform the world that when it comes to patient care, Nurses are the ones who run the show? Maybe for permission to give all the naysayers in my life a Paw Slap Of Disgust?

Nurse Andy

Dear Nurse Andy:

I think you need to take a deep breath and watch this clip from Meet the Parents:

 Did you notice something about the men in this clip who are poking fun at Greg? Did you notice that they are all a bunch of ignorant jackasses? It was in watching this scene that I realized how much Nurses do and the career flexibility that they have; plus, they don't have to deal with the insurance companies! Talk about your win-win situation!

Since you seek my permission to hand out a Paw Slap Of Disgust to the people who hassle you about being a Nurse, here is my latest incarnation:

Personally, I think it looks quite manly!

I suggest when people - especially your family - start to get on your nerves, gently remind them of what you have told me: "that when it comes to patient care, Nurses are the ones who run the show"; feel free to add a sinister glance that suggests that the need to be nice to you! There are some people who have yet to leave the Stone Age and catch up to modern reality; sadly, your family members appear to be among them. Since you cannot educate them you are going to have to toughen your skin and learn to ignore their barbs. Unless a job requires you to have a particular set of sex organs Nursing is not a "man's job" or a "woman's job" but a job that requires a person who is qualified to do the job - and that goes for all careers!


Ask Tazi! is ghostwritten by a human with a Bachelors of Arts in Communications. Tazi-Kat is not really a talking feline.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Allowing Daughter To Wear Makeup Is A Big Milestone

Dear Tazi:

My daughter will turn 12 this summer and has asked me if she can start wearing makeup. I have been hoping to keep her my little girl for just a while longer, but I realize I must also accept the fact that she is growing up and that wearing makeup is a milestone for a girl her age.

Personally, I would like to wait until "Alicia" starts school in September before allowing her to wear makeup, and she is already upset that I will be making her wait an extra two months, but I am feeling firm in my decision. The summer months are spent swimming and playing outdoors and doing other activities that do not require makeup. I am just afraid of the argument that will be facing me when I tell her what kind of makeup Alicia will be allowed to wear.

I plan on allowing my daughter to wear light and neutral tones - no bright pinks, no heavy mascara (if any at all), and absolutely no foundation! I am not naive, and realize that Alicia may decide to rebel and use her allowance money to buy these things and put them on her face once she gets to school, but I am just trying to be the best Mom I can. My own mother died when I was quite young, so I did not have the kind of guidance I seek to give my daughter. Can you think of any common ground I can use as leverage and/or compromising points to get Alicia to see things my way?

Still The Mom

Dear Still The Mom:

Your daughter has reached that magical - and dreadful - age when she turns into a young woman, and you will no longer recognize her - and not because she has buried her face under several layers of makeup! As you may recall, the pre-teen and teenage years are full of hormonal changes that will leave your daughter feeling like nobody understands her and that the world is against her every wish. (I may be exaggerating here, but just a little!).

A good compromise when it comes to wearing makeup is to allow your daughter to wear age-appropriate makeup. A young girl wearing too much makeup looks like any other woman in too much makeup - clownish. What is worse is that she also looks like a little girl trying to look like she is all grown up, which is the last thing she wants right now.

Since your daughter will be outside a lot this summer, why not allow her to wear tinted moisturizer and tinted lip balm - both will offer her the SPF protection her skin needs against the sun's damaging UV rays and give her the satisfaction of wearing makeup. Alicia will feel like she has won the battle and you will have done your job as a Mom! With luck, Alicia will also discover that wearing makeup in the summer can feel sticky and she will decide that regular sunblock is the better least until school starts.

Once school starts, you should allow Alicia to continue wearing a tinted moisturizer with SPF protection and tinted lip gloss. This may be all she wants, especially when she sees how her friends look in full makeup.

"Tammy Faye" should not be the look for any 12-year-old girl!
If Alicia persists on wearing more makeup than you will allow, I suggest that you offer her a little freedom to choose, but demand veto power over all potential purchases. This will give you the control you seek over your daughter's choices, as well as the freedom she seeks to wear more makeup. It will also give you the opportunity for some mother-daughter bonding time as you peruse various color and product selections.

For further suggestions on the matter, click here to read a previously published letter on this subject!


Ask Tazi! is ghostwritten by a human with a Bachelors of Arts in Communications. Tazi-Kat is not really a talking feline.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Tazi's Corner #48 - The Art Of Compromise

Dear Readers,

Have you ever been frustrated with your fellow humans? I know I have! My Mommie is FOREVER forgetting to fill all five of my feeding bowls, to put exactly six ice cubes in my water bowl, and to fluff the pillow by the window so I can sit on it and stare out at the world. The other night when I wanted my customary 9:30 PM treat, she made me wait because she had to use the flushable litter-box! I didn’t get my treat until 9:33! The audacity!

I decided that there was only one solution to this abuse, and I consulted with the great wise cat, Old Deuteronomy. He asked me if I was willing to compromise my standards at all, for the sake of my humans’ busy schedules. I told him NO! He then looked at me and patiently replied, “Just as you refuse to compromise, so they refuse as well”.

Up until now, I have always thought of compromise as a way to get two losers in the same argument. With compromise, nobody wins and everybody walks away unhappy – or so I thought. After my conversation with Old Deuteronomy, I decided to try it. When I noticed that my favorite feeding station was empty, I did not wake Mommie at 2 AM to get up and fill it; I simply ate some cat cereal from a different feeding station, and woke Mommie at 5 AM to get up and fill my favorite bowl. Although I could see she was not happy about the 5 AM wake up, she did fluff my window pillow for me, since she was awake. What a treat! A fluffed pillow is worth two full feeding stations! This compromise stuff could have a good side to it after all…

In the spirit of compromise, I decided that I would do my morning barfs in the middle of the floor instead in some secluded corner where they would not be discovered for a week. This compromise did not work out as well; one of the humans stepped in it and was not happy with me, although in the spirit of compromise they might have looked at where they were walking!

I think with a little practice, I will get the hang of this compromise thing, and possibly even learn to like it! What are your thoughts on compromise? Do you think it solves more problems than it creates or that it creates more problems than it solves? Do you only compromise over the important things or the little things? How do you manage to compromise without compromising your principles? Discuss!


Ask Tazi! is ghostwritten by a human with a Bachelors of Arts in Communications. Tazi-Kat is not really a talking feline.

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Lying To A Child About Death Is Not A Good Idea

Dear Tazi:

My little sister is the product of a second marriage, so there is a large age difference between us (about 15 years). I love her dearly, and wanrt to protect her from life's little sadnesses that seem to devastate children.

"Lola" is five years old and has a pet goldfish. Lola loves her goldfish like most children love their pets - heart and soul! Goldfish do not live that long, so I am afraid that Lola's pet has a shelf life of less that six months at this point. Our grandfather recently died and Lola did not take it well at all. She has had nightmares and is concerned that everyone she loves is going to die, too - including her beloved pet fish.

Should Lola's fish die, I am considering replacing the fish before she notices (I am the one who feeds it and cares for it; she just enjoys it). I am not sure if this is the right thing to do, though. If I were to go through with my plan, I would tell nobody - once you share a secret it is no longer a secret! I am just afraid that maybe Lola will be able to tell the difference between her fish and the replacement fish. Am I making a mountain out of a molehill, as my Grandpa always said I did?

Big Sis

Dear Big Sis:

The love you show for Lola is a beautiful thing, and your desire to protect her at this vulnerable time in her life is commendable, but I do not think you should deny Lola the opportunity to grieve her losses. So often when we try to shield children from pain we end up leaving them unable to develop emotionally.

Lola's reaction to the passing of your Grandpa is not unusual in young children, especially if the death was unexpected and the child close to the loved one who passed. Rather than cross a bridge that has yet to appear on the horizon, I think you should try to work through the difficulties Lola is currently facing.

While children do not always benefit from counseling, counseling is not always necessary. I suggest instead that you try to spend time with Lola one on one, and when she feels ready to talk about her fears and stresses, gently respond. Do not push away her concerns by telling her they will not happen because in her mind they can - and will, which is why she is so stressed. Instead, validate Lola's feelings by telling her that you are sad, too, so you understand how she feels and that it is okay to feel scared and alone but that she is not; let her know that she has you and her mother and father who love her and want to be there with her to see her grow up. If your Grandpa's death was due to illness, explain this to Lola in terms she can understand and grasp. If you are religious, explain the concept of Heaven to her. You have my deepest sympathies on your loss.

To answer your question about buying Lola a new fish, I would not recommend this - you will only be putting off the inevitable and giving the girl false hope that future fish will have an equally long life-span, leading to a charade that will have to be repeated until Lola is old enough to catch on - and then you really will have a mountain to overcome instead of just a molehill.


Ask Tazi! is ghostwritten by a human with a Bachelors of Arts in Communications. Tazi-Kat is not really a talking feline.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Neighbor's Yard Is Not The Place To Drop Your Dog's Droppings!

Dear Tazi:

I have a neighbor who allows his dog to relieve itself on my lawn.  This neighbor is not even courteous enough to pick up his dog’s droppings – he just leaves them there for me.  The worst part?  My neighbor owns a Saint Bernard, so the droppings are enormous. 

I know that you addressed this issue once before – and suggested that the homeowner gather the feces for delivery to the dog owner’s yard – but I get sick to my stomach just approaching the droppings.  The smell and the texture turn my stomach.  I am an elderly woman and do not have the strength to lift a large shovel that would put some distance between me and the offending product, and I do not have the extra money to spend on a Pooper Scooper – besides, it should be the dog owner’s financial responsibility, not mine.  I hate to bother the Sherriff’s office with such a trivial matter, but it is not trivial to me!  My granddaughter told me to ask myself, “What would Tazi do?” which is how I discovered your charming column, so I am asking: What would you do, Tazi?

Grandma Minnie

Dear Grandma Minnie:

First, I would jump in your lap for a nice big cuddle!  Grandmas make for the best cuddles! 

Next, I would show you a copy of this blog post by Publicly Painful, so you would know that you are not alone in your problem; then, I would call the Sherriff’s office and file a complaint against the dog owner.  Your problem is not trivial to you, and as a taxpayer you have every right to utilize the services of local law enforcement to protect your property and peace of mind. 

What your neighbor is doing is probably against the law – most municipalities have laws about cleaning up your dog droppings.  These laws exist for several reasons; aside from aesthetics it is important to clean up domestic droppings because it attracts rats.  That’s right!  Rats eat dog poop – as well as other nasty stuff.  Why do you think they live in the sewers?  Your neighbor is leaving a steaming pile of trouble on your front lawn; the Sherriff’s office can see to it that this (comparatively) small problem does not get any bigger.  Have courage and your problem will be taken care of by those with the authority to do it!


P.S.  The original letter was about a cat, but thank you for reading it!  Your interest is appreciated! --T.K.

Ask Tazi! is ghostwritten by a human with a Bachelors of Arts in Communications. Tazi-Kat is not really a talking feline.

Unplanned Pregnancy Puts Strain On Marriage

Dear Tazi:

I am a mother of two with a third on the way. While my pregnancy was not planned, I am overjoyed to be welcoming a new child. My husband is not so happy. In fact, he is downright hostile about the idea. We were hoping to buy a house in the near future, and now that we have a third child is feels that we will not be able to afford a mortgage on top of the cost of raising and educating another baby.

“Joel” has accused me of slipping up on my birth control on purpose and forcing him into having another baby. When he first found out I was expecting he suggested I have an abortion. His hostility towards my pregnancy and our impending child are stressing me, which is not good for me in my current condition. When I mentioned this to Joel he said it was a good thing because it might cause me to miscarry.

Tazi, I want my husband out of our home! I would move myself, but I do not want to abandon my children, nor do I want to uproot them from their home during a separation and possible divorce. Joel is refusing to move out, saying that he pays half the bills and therefore has the right to continue living here. Tazi, Joel does not pay half of the bills; he pays maybe a quarter of them. I make more than twice as much money than he does, so I would have no problem supporting my children, but we would have to make some lifestyle changes. For one, I would have to pull them out of private school and send them to the local public school. I have suggested this to begin with – this way we could easily afford three children and a house – but Joel is adamant that our children go to parochial school.

Tazi, I don’t want to make a snap decision that I will regret; but I don’t want to put my unborn baby at risk, either. Meanwhile, the living situation at home is reaching its breaking point. My five year old is so stressed he has started wetting the bed – something he has not done in over two years. I wanted to go to marital counseling, but Joel refused. Any thoughts on what my next step should be? I have a few in mind, but need a (confidential) sounding board.

Expecting Trouble

Dear Expecting Trouble:

Your husband sounds like a hypocrite. He wants to send your children to parochial school, but suggests that you abort one of them. He is complaining that you are pregnant, yet did not take steps himself to ensure that a birth control failure would not result in pregnancy (a vasectomy would have done the trick!). Furthermore, he has an inflated ego that needs to be popped!

In life, a woman has a finite amount of time to have a healthy baby, while you can buy a house at any age. Once a woman reaches a certain age pregnancy poses a higher risk for health issues and birth defects, due to aging ovum (the chromosomes have a tendency to stick together, resulting in extra genetic information being passed on to the resulting child. Trisomy-21, Down’s syndrome, is one example).

I strongly suggest that you go to marital counseling alone, since your husband will not join you. Talking to a professional will help you to sort out your feelings and do what is best for both you and your children, including helping you to remember the good qualities your husband possesses and why you married him in the first place. Hopefully, once your new baby arrives your husband will be more on board with the idea of a third child. Sometimes, we resist the inevitable until we discover that it actually is inevitable; then, we embrace it.


Ask Tazi! is ghostwritten by a human with a Bachelors of Arts in Communications. Tazi-Kat is not really a talking feline.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Big Difference In Being 'Round The Way And 'Round The Block!

Dear Tazi:

Why is it every guy I date expects me to have sex with him on the first date? I am not exaggerating, every guy I agree to go out with expects me to go "all the way" with him. While I am comfortable with reaching third base, I will not sleep with a man on a first date. I have my standards!

Why can't guys just let a relationship develop at its natural pace? Why must they insist on pushing things? And on the rare occasion I do give in, because I really like the guy, I never hear from him again and end up feeling used! Am I the one with the problem for expecting too much out of men?

Betty In Boston

Dear Betty In Boston:

I am going to be blunt, since it seems that this is what you need to hear (even though it might not be what you want to hear): Yes, you are the one with the problem; you are expecting too much - out of the men you are leading on, and out of your own behavior. There are plenty of men out there who are not seeking a physical relationship at the onset of a relationship, but at the same time many of these men are not going to turn down a woman who so readily offers herself to them. While you do have standards, some would say they appear to be pretty low. You are not going to attract a man looking for a relationship if he thinks you are a woman who has been around the block a few times! Try to be more of a 'round the way woman and see where it gets you.

Yeah, she chill!

The word "no" means no. It does not sometimes mean yes; it means NO. You need to start practicing saying this, and you need to be straightforward with your dates before anything turns physical. You could say something like, "Look, I don't have sex on a first date; no matter how far things go tonight they aren't going to go there, understand?" Unfortunately, this may have the unwanted side-effect of turning you into a booty call, so you may want to hold off on any physical involvement until an actual relationship seems to be forming; this can take as few as three or four dates or as long as several months. Remember that a relationship worth having is a relationship that is worth the time to go slow. Haven't your friends told you any of this?


Ask Tazi! is ghostwritten by a human with a Bachelors of Arts in Communications. Tazi-Kat is not really a talking feline.