Friend will not talk about past problems
Difficult Sept. 23-Oct. 22
You could be at the point where you can’t seem to contain yourself. Listen to news, and decide how you feel about what you are hearing. Tonight: Express your childlike side.
Oct. 23-Nov. 21
Pressure builds around your home life. You could feel as if you don’t have enough funds to deal with the issue behind the pressure. Stop, and do something else for now. Tonight: Go with a suggestion.
Nov. 22-Dec. 21
Keep your distance, and be aware of the ramifications of what has happened. Get to the bottom of a problem. A conversation easily could clear up the issue. Your instincts take you to a new level. Tonight: Keep to your budget.
Dec. 22-Jan. 19
Follow your convictions. You might want to do the unexpected to help move a cause forward. Listen to news, especially before you make a financial decision. The toll of an error could be huge. Tonight: Say “yes.”
Jan. 20-Feb. 18
The Moon in your sign highlights your capabilities. Recognize your limits when dealing with a long-term desire. Your ability to understand your choices helps strengthen your position at work. Tonight: A must appearance.
Feb. 19-March 20
Listen to your inner voice, and you will get past a problem with ease if you do. Your ability to detach and see the big picture helps you gain a fresh perspective, no matter what goes down. Tonight: Relax to a movie.
Today’s Birthdays: Jazz musician Roy Haynes is 93. Actor William H. Macy is 68. Political commentator Charles Krauthammer is 68. Comedian Robin Duke is 64. Jazz musician Terence Blanchard is 56. Actor Christopher Collet is 50. Rapper-actor Common is 46. Rapper Khujo (Goodie Mob, The Lumberjacks) is 46. Singers Natalie and Nicole Albino (Nina Sky) are 34. Olympic gold medal skier Mikaela Shiffrin is 23. Carolyn Hax is away. The following first appeared on October 22, 2003.
Hi Carolyn: A few months back I had a falling-out with a friend whom I was extremely close to.
She initiated a “timeout” where she didn’t want to talk to me about the issues at hand or anything else, because she “just didn’t have time to deal with” me. Obviously, I was beyond hurt that my best friend wouldn’t make time to talk things out.
Now when I bump into her in social gatherings she acts all cheery and chatty. To which I respond with a very cold (I’d even say Arctic) shoulder.
She then fires at me that she’s just being civil and that I lack the most rudimentary social skill. And I’ll agree.
But I guess I just don’t see the point in plastering on a smile and spraying airkisses on someone who wouldn’t give up a half-hour to at least attempt to straighten things out.
So where do you side, civility or reality?
This year you find positive solutions to difficult challenges. Others might be envious of your resourcefulness. You are able to ask the right questions to get the information you need. Others find you to be a very positive source of energy. AQUARIUS is a natural healer for you.
— Your Socially Heathen Fan
Dear Socially: I’m surprising myself a little here, and voting civility down.
Polite cheer is for when you’ve had the tough conversation and agreed that things can’t be resolved. It’s not for when someone wants you to make it easy for her to avoid the tough conversation.
If it makes you feel better, say, “I find it hard to be civil to someone who won’t even ‘deal with’ me.”
Dear Carolyn: What is the proper response when a business associate or person with whom you have a professional relationship tells you they’re getting a divorce?
I’ve been saying, “I’m sorry” or “What a difficult time this must be for you.”
My friend says most people (men in particular) would be put off by that, and that it conveys pity and judgment on their personal lives.
I definitely don’t want to do that, but there must be something better to say than “Oh.”
— Surely, You Wouldn’t Say “Congratulations”
Dear Surely: I wouldn’t, and don’t call me Shirley.
The proper response to a divorcing colleague is, “I’m sorry” or “What a difficult time this must be.”
Or “Ooh, tough break.” Or “That can’t be fun.”
And, since you didn’t ask, the proper response to someone who sees these genuine yet safely generic expressions of sympathy as condescending or judgmental or somehow more grating particularly to men is “Huh?”
From left, Lionel Richie, Katy Perry, Ryan Seacrest and Luke Bryan on the set of “American Idol” in New York.