auntie ag and uncle ony

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MOULDY OLD PO

Last night I had a hot date. I spent ages clearing up my flat and removing all traces of sluttishness - shoving things under the bed and into the wardrobe and putting vases of flowers and impressive books and classical CDs casually around, so it was all marvellous and pristine as if it is always like that. He came back in for coffee and it was all going very well until he went to the loo. He came back looking rather odd and left shortly afterwards. When I went in there I realised, to my horror, that the remains of a festering Christmas pudding (which I had flushed down the loo in a panic because I didn't want there to be anything odd in the bin) was floating in the loo looking like a very old and oddly shaped turd which had gone mouldy. I am so embarrassed I don't know what to do. Should I call him and explain?

Elizabeth, Bristol

UNCLE ONY: How very symbolic. If it were a dream, I would tell you that you are failing to "own" your dark side, which is surfacing in your dream life in the form of defecational symbolism. As it is, it is plain you suffer from low self-esteem, based in unrealistic expectations of the self. It will be this - a sense of duplicity, performance and strain - which led your "hot date" to leave rather than anything he saw in the toilet. You must work on your inner core and sense of self-worth. You must reach a point where you feel you have nothing to hide: and that, I'm afraid, means improving your standard of housekeeping, not just creating an impression of order. A man does not wish to be with a slattern or a fraud.

AUNTIE AG: Oh don't be ridiculous, darling. It's the funniest thing I've ever heard in my life. Just wait for him to call you again and, next time, concentrate less on your cleaning skills and more on your seductive ones. Once you have him in your bed and delighted that you're a sexy, seductive creature, not some ghastly Stepford wife, you can regale him with the hilarious story and he'll think you're so entertaining he'll be dying to pay for a cleaner to save your pretty little hands.

SISTER ACT II

Last year, my husband insisted that my sister's wedding was "not important enough to dress up for" and attended in denims and trainers (well, he is a Scouser!). I was so furious that I swore I'd do the same if his sister married. Well, It's happened and the wedding is to be in July. My children (bless them) have reminded him of my threat. What do I do? If I carry out the threat, I'll look back on the wedding photos and feel a right Douglas Hurd.

Jane, Liverpool

UNCLE ONY: Power struggles, Jane, are a major deadening and destructive force in any relationship. Why are you seeking to control your husband with this absurd "tit for tat" scenario? The marriage is clearly foundering and I recommend a course of relationship counselling as a matter of urgency.

AUNTIE AG: Oh, don't be ridiculous, Ony. There's more than one way of looking common at a wedding, darling. I suggest you tell your husband that his sister's wedding is not important enough to dress appropriately for and upstage everyone with a deliciously short and tarty outfit with a magnificent uplifted cleavage dominating the wedding photographs. It sounds to me like you're both just trying to make everybody laugh, and flirt with each other, and you'll have much more fun out of a bit of cleavage than a pair of nasty old trainers.

ONCE BITTEN TWICE SHY

My boyfriend keeps biting me really quite hard when we have sex. I find it really annoying and off-putting and have asked him to stop, but he says he gets carried away in the heat of the moment and cannot help it.

Raquel, Loughborough

UNCLE ONY: Yes. Why, Raquel, are you "annoyed" by this normal and healthy manifestation of this young man's passions, needs and desire. Could it be that you are "blocking"? - refusing to acknowledge a nervousness, even fear of the reality of sex, a reality which, like life involves both pleasure and pain? Why are you afraid to acknowledge and explore the pleasure which can be found in pain. Hmmm? If you would like to write to me again, we could perhaps discuss your problem with this in closer detail.

AUNTIE AG: (Shut up, Ony, you ridiculous old pervert.) He's an animal, darling, and you need to train him out of it as if he were a beast of the field. Every time he bites you, get hold of the hairs on his chest, or other anatomical area, and pull them really hard for quite a long time. That should do the trick. If not, refuse to have anything to do with him in bed unless he wears dog collar and a muzzle.

IT'S ONLY WORDS

Is it mean to refuse to lend books? It drives me mad when people ask because you never get them back.

Graham, Worcester

UNCLE ONY: Why, Graham, do you lack so much confidence in your own inner core? Allowing others to effectively steal your books is the worst form of sacrifice: sacrifice which only exists in order to control. It is those who wish to borrow the books rather than pay for them who are mean. As a writer myself, (Think Win-Win, The Interactive Goal Focus Paradigm As The Route To Your Perfect Mate, Piakthon Press, pounds 24.99) this kind of blatant pilfering of royalties makes my blood boil.

AUNTIE AG: Well it is a bit, angel. After all, books are meant to be sort of shary things, aren't they? (Ony, darling, you really must try and deal with your anger.)

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