laplumeDear L. A. Plume,

For the past four years we have met friends for a January vacation; this year they appeared with boxes of Christmas presents for us. We’ve never exchanged gifts in the past, I don’t know why this year they changed the custom but it left us empty handed and embarrassed. Should I try to make up for it, and if so – how?




Dear Sandy,

There’s not much you can do after the fact, unless you were especially quick on your feet and exclaimed, “Oh my goodness – I left your bag of gifts right by the front door at home!” If you’ve not exchanged gifts before and they made the assumption that this year things would change, I guess they found out differently. Now you have to wonder if you should buy them gifts next year and they won’t have any for you and so on. It’s sort of like sending the Christmas card to someone who has taken you off their list. Write them a nice thank you letter for the gifts and let it go.



Dear Ms. Plume,

A few nights ago I was taken out to a nice dinner by a gentleman introduced to me by mutual friends. I had a lovely time and I was hoping to hear from him again, BUT… as we prepared to leave the dinner table, I inadvertently pushed my chair back onto the hem of my long skirt. When I stood up, my skirt was pulled all the way down to the floor!

There I was, standing in a fancy restaurant, in my under drawers. After a look of shock passed across his face, he was solicitous, but I’m mortified. Should I say anything or just wait and see if I hear from him again?



Dearest Alicia,

I’ve always loved those long skirts you wear but wondered if they would get you into trouble one day! I, too, would have been mortified, and I’m a bit so just having to tell you that imagining that picture is making me laugh. All I can think of is that childhood rhyme: “I see London, I see France…..” So, I guess that your “state of affairs” may determine his continued interest. I just hope you were sporting nice French lingerie and not granny panties. Do keep me posted.



Dear L. A. Plume,

The ladies were invited to lunch last week and were asked to rsvp so that a reservation could be made. One, who does this often, showed up without responding and there simply wasn’t room for her at the table. She was quite fussy with us for not being able to include her. What could we have done?




Dear Bets,

Nothing. We all know how I feel about people who don’t rsvp. She got just what she deserved and I’m happy to hear it, bless her heart.


Read more Calling Card