DEAR ABBY: I bought a used car with a navigation system last week and noticed that the previous owner’s information was still embedded in the system. Abby, I had that man’s home address, the addresses of his friends, his bank, his workplace — every place he had gone.
Please inform your readers that if they sell a car with a navigation system, they should first delete all of their information. Car dealerships should also be aware of this and, perhaps, erase the information from the system as part of their vehicle inspection. — JENNIFER IN LEE’S SUMMIT, MO.
DEAR JENNIFER: Your letter raised some eyebrows among me and my staff, so we canvassed some of the used car dealerships in the Los Angeles area. They’re already aware of it. Those we spoke to stated that they are not legally required to delete information from a navigation system, and all agreed that the seller is responsible for removing the information before selling the car.
I am sure many readers will thank you for the warning.
DEAR ABBY: I’m 18 and a senior in high school. I do not drink and don’t plan on drinking when prom time comes around. My problem is, I’m not sure whether or not my date will want to. I don’t want to be around alcohol, and I especially do not want to have a drunk date I have to sober up before I can take her home, which might upset her parents if it’s after curfew.
So how do I find out if my potential prom date is a drinker before I ask her to the prom? — DOESN’T DRINK IN SOUTH CAROLINA
DEAR DOESN’T DRINK: I assume you won’t be inviting a total stranger. Start talking with some of the girls you’re considering inviting and ask them how they feel about drinking alcohol. Or, let them know how you feel about drinking, and that you don’t like hanging around with people who do.
P.S. If you do find yourself with a girl who gets drunk, you should have no hesitation about returning her to her parents in that condition. And if you get any grief, point out that you are cold sober and their daughter imbibed against your wishes, too. Then let them deal with her.
DEAR ABBY: I have been with my girlfriend for a couple of years. During this time I have become increasingly convinced that if I were ever to leave her, she would kill herself.
I love her, but the thought that I couldn’t ever leave her without her killing herself is not pleasant. She doesn’t have many friends she can rely on. I always tell her how pleased I am when she hangs out with friends without me, because she doesn’t do it often enough.
What do I do when the girl I love makes serious threats of suicide if I were ever to break up with her? — HOSTAGE IN TEXAS
DEAR HOSTAGE: Here’s what you do: Tell her that what she is saying is crazy thinking, and that if she’s being serious she needs to discuss her hyper-dependence with a mental health professional. You should also tell her that unless she does so immediately, your relationship with her is on borrowed time. Your signature speaks volumes, because as long as this woman can subject you to emotional blackmail — and that’s what she is doing — you are, indeed, her hostage.
Dear Abby is written by Abigail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips. Write Dear Abby at www.DearAbby.com or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.
For an excellent guide to becoming a better conversationalist and a more sociable person, order “How to Be Popular.” Send a business-sized, self-addressed envelope, plus check or money order for $6 (U.S. funds) to: Dear Abby — Popularity Booklet, P.O. Box 447, Mount Morris, IL 61054-0447. (Postage is included in the price.)