Advice Column: Answers For YOUR Biggest Life Problems


Email YOUR questions to Wellington and Tallulah:

Dear Wellington and Tallulah,

I just can’t seem to catch a break these days. No matter how hard I try to stay out of debt, the rising cost of living in Tacoma just keeps ruining my plans. Aside from the skyrocketing rent, I’ve also had deal with some serious health issues regarding my pet rat Jerry. He’s going to make it, but that rat isn’t going to be satisfied until he’s put me out on the streets. To make matters worse, my mother-in-law came to live with us this summer and has been eating us out of house and home. She’s not really my mother-in-law, but my boyfriend told her that we are getting married, so she’s already embraced that in-law mindset. I may be having second thoughts. Did I mention that my car got stolen and there is no way I can afford to use Uber? I can’t even afford bus fare. Do you know how hard it is when your last resort is to bum rides from a friend who only has a bicycle? Riding on handlebars to work is neither comfortable, nor safe, but it’s been my life now for months. I really need your help, Wellington and Tallulah. What should I do?


Grit City Gary
Wellington responds:

Dear Grit City Gary,

Get a grip! Stop riding the handlebars of another and wrap your fists around your own handle grips. You’ll not only be happier, you’ll be healthier, both financially and physically.

Too bad your car went AWOL because if it were still available you could use the carbon monoxide from your exhaust system to put your rat out of its misery. You can make a tube with paper towel and toilet paper rolls. Just tape them together and run that from the tailpipe to the paper bag into which you’ve placed the ailing rat. Bingo! Rodent-sized gas chamber! That would save from having to pay a veterinarian for putting your beloved pet, Jerry, to “sleep.” They charge way too much to euthanize rodents but, with your car missing, you might have to bite the bullet and pay that one last vet bill. Take comfort from the fact that rats don’t have a very long lifespan anyway.

Actually, you should be glad that your car vanished. That is probably a blessing in disguise. Embrace it. For the price on one tank of gas, you can buy your very own second-hand bicycle. If you’re really resourceful, you can probably find a bicycle for free. I see them all over the place, lying in the bushes or along the train tracks or submerged in shallow ponds. Just keep your eyes peeled. Riding a bicycle, instead of driving a car, will save you a fortune in both gas money and you won’t have to spend as much on entertainment because you’ll be entertained riding all over town on a human-powered two-wheeler.

As for the so-called “mother-in-law” issue, take heart. Count your lucky stars that you are not officially married. That makes it easier to dump the boyfriend without any legal paperwork. Get rid of him and his mother goes out the door with him. Living a solitary life is much simpler than being bogged down with some poor sap who can’t take care of his or herself, or contribute to the overall financial picture.

Keep a stiff upper lip and soldier on,


Tallulah responds

Dear Grit City Gary,

When you refer to riding to work on handlebars … are you talking about someone’s mustache? (I’m not sure I understand.)

Maybe you can’t catch a break but you can catch a falling star and put it in your pocket to address that so-called skyrocketing rent with a happier attitude. Instead of worrying about debt – take a careful look around. Your neighbors (and the entire American public) are up to their harmonicas in federal debt. So you’re in good company there homie. All this hysteria regarding the rising costs of Tacoma-living is completely bogus when we have FREE living opportunities here. Just take a meander down to the industrial Tideflats and you’ll find toilets, hand-washing sinks and fresh water; courtesy of our flashing and flickering City. There’s also a lot of camaraderie there. In the Tideflats, you can use all the savings you previously spent on celestial rent to afford the expensive healthcare your rat Jerry truly needs. Be grateful the health issues are his and not yours, personally. With your good health, you’ve also got your mother-in-law. Realize she cannot eat you out of house and home if you build your abode out of pallets, instead of candy bricks.

Now that you realize your situation is only about money, and your problems are really small potatoes, you can feed that to your ailing rat (the poor darling) because vegetables are very good for rodents. It might just be the potato a day that keeps the veterinarian away.

Sorry that your car got stolen. Don’t call the City police to make a report about it because they’re so understaffed – there’s nobody to answer the phones anymore. Keep riding those handlebars though and your life will get better. You’ll be driving your very own new Lamburgini in no time.



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