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I Do Not Condone Hake Speech

One of my absolute favourite writing jobs was my year-long stint as an Agony Aunty. The problem was that I could never quite take the readers' questions very seriously and ended up giving some rather tongue-in-cheek advice that was only SOMETIMES well-received. Within two months, I was branded a "man hater" (which is SO not true - I love men - they amuse me)! This was one of the columns that got my male readers all worked up!

Dear Aunty Shelli

My boyfriend (and maybe future husband) is a keen fisherman and is always off to Dullstroom to try and catch a trout. We have both been invited away by friends for a trout fishing weekend and I’m dreading it because there’s nothing more boring than not fishing on a fishing weekend. The other wives all fish so I am going to be stuck in the house on my own for hours. HELP…how do I get out of this and not lose my boyfriend?

Woolly Bugger (Miss)


I think this might, in fact, be the PERFECT time to lose your boyfriend. You may not get another chance! Before you know it, you will be looking after your very dull children in Dullstroom while your dull husband and the other dull wives go fishing. It’s just too awful for words. If I were you (and I am incredibly grateful that I am not), I would throw an Oscar-winning temper tantrum the very second you get home and make him choose between fishing and you.

Scenario A: He chooses fishing

  1. Allow your lower lip to tremble, take a very deep breath and drive to the nearest Mugg & Bean. Order an entire chocolate cake (that supposedly serves 10. Or 1 with a broken heart) and delete his number from your phone.
  2. Thank your lucky stars that he broke up with you and not the other way around. (Men who are on the receiving end of a break-up often see it as some kind of weird challenge. Most of them become stalkers. And not the good kind.)
  3. Find another boyfriend. Try and choose one with a personality this time.

Scenario B: He chooses you

  1. Your problems are worse than you think. Because it is now obvious that your boyfriend doesn’t have a spine. This is very useful because you can probably manipulate him into washing the dishes and letting you spend large portions of your pension on shoes, but long term, it makes more sense to get a maid and marry someone wealthy.
  2. You will have to help him find another hobby (now that he has given up fishing “for you”). Try and steer him away from the obvious choices – Chess, Watching Paint Dry, Curling, etc.
  3. His friends will hate you and call you all sorts of names. Probably because they have nothing better to do. Other than go fishing.
  4. He will become increasingly resentful and will leave you for another man. Or worse still, he will become increasingly resentful and NOT leave you. This is too awful to contemplate and must be avoided at all costs.

Scenario C: You go fishing

Hahahaha! I crack myself up. That’s hilarious.

Scenario D: You go to Dullstroom

  1. Put on your big girls panties and tell him that while he and his merry men go fishing, you are going to be spending the day shopping in Dullstroom. It’s called “asking for what you want” – something that is so unfamiliar to men that they will agree to anything out of sheer and utter terror.
  2. Spend the day eating pancakes, having a facial, and shopping up a storm with his credit card. Then head back to the house for a long hot bath and enjoy a glass of red wine in front of the fire.
  3. Tell him that you SO wish he didn’t smell so awful after his day of fishing because you are so unbelievably horny and have been fantasizing about doing naughty things to him all day.
  4. Put on your flannel pajamas and go right to sleep. (He won’t manage to sleep for a very long time.)
  5. Repeat if necessary.

Just remember that the success of any relationship hinges on that good old-fashioned notion of “give and take”. He gets to give. And you get to take. The sooner you get that balance right; the happier your life is going to be. (Unless, of course, you happen to look like Gordon Ramsay in drag. Because then this guy might actually be a keeper. Trust me!)


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