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Dear Abby: Which way should the pillow opening face?

Published: Tuesday, Oct. 6 2009 12:00 a.m. MDT

Dear Abby: "Pillow Talk in Abilene" (July 24) had to have been written by my husband, Dick. I went looking for him and asked if he had written to you. When I held up your column, he was shocked. We laughed so hard I had trouble reading the piece to him.

This scenario must be universal. I make the bed with the pillow opening on the outside; Dick makes it with the opening on the inside. We always thought it was funny because we do many things differently. Thanks for the dose of morning humor. — Pat And Dick in Spring Hill, Fla.

Dear Pat and Dick: I'm pleased to have started your morning on a light note. Read on for more — as well as some practical explanations:

Dear Abby: There's a very good reason why the open end of the pillow faces the inside of the bed. When I was 3 or 4, I realized that placing the open end toward the inside would prevent monsters from getting into my pillow. It has worked like a charm for 55 years. — Resting Easy In Kansas

Dear Abby: I was in the military, and bed-making is one of the things you learn in boot camp, in addition to how to properly fold T-shirts, underwear and bras — yes, folding bras. The mantra for placing pillowcases is, "Seam and Slack to the Center of the Rack," open end to the left (which indicates the outside edge of the bed). So there you go — straight from Uncle Sam himself. — Shellie In Chicago

Dear Abby: It sounds to me that "Pillow Talk" and his wife have too much time on their hands. If all they have to do is debate which way to turn the pillows when they make the bed, how do they feel about the epidemic of belly-button lint? What difference does it make which way the pillow edges are turned? They're usually hidden by a comforter or spread anyway. — Practical in Winston-Salem, N.C.

Dear Abby: In nursing school we were taught that the opening of the pillowcase should face away from the entrance to the room. The reason is when you walk, germs and particles from the floor are kicked up and can enter the side of the pillow, which increases the potential for infections and disease through the capture of microorganisms in the pillow opening. — Sandy in Arizona

Dear Abby: I didn't think your readers could top (or bottom) the great toilet paper debate (over the front or under the back), but the question about the direction of the pillowcase opening has done it. Most of us are preoccupied with worrying about health care, the economy, the two wars we are fighting, our jobs and putting food on the table. That couple needs to get a life! — John W., Lexington, Ky.

Dear Abby: As a young girl I was taught the "proper" way to make a bed was with the pillowcase opening facing the edge of the bed — not the middle. Back then, this was done so leaking feathers wouldn't end up inside the bed but on the floor. — Inger in Portsmouth, N.H.

Dear Abby: My husband and I had the same argument, until he explained why he wanted the edges facing out. When he put his arm under me to "spoon," he would get caught in the pillowcase if it faced in. We solved the problem by making the bed up for "looks," but when we turn it down for the night, we flip the pillow around. Now we're both happy! — Mindy In New Mexico

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. © UNIVERSAL UCLICK

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