DEAR ABBY: Not long ago, while I was vacationing in Dallas, my wife and I saw 10 or 15 cars with teenage drivers that carried bumper stickers which read: IF I'M DRIVING IRRESPONSIBLY, CALL MY PARENTS. (Or MY DAD or MY MOM.) Each sticker had a telephone number, obviously handprinted, at the bottom - printed with black, indelible markers.
I was so taken with the idea that I asked one of those teenage drivers where he got the bumper sticker. He replied that his parents had made him put it on his car because he had gotten several tickets for moving violations. He said the stickers were the brainstorm of a teenager who lived in another state - and who was selling them.My own son will soon be driving, and I would like to get some of these bumper stickers, especially the one that says CALL MY DAD. Could you find out where I can order them? - GEORGE IN TUSCALOOSA, ALA.
DEAR GEORGE: The teenager who originated the idea was Fred Stangle of Albuquerque, N.M., who by age 17 had been involved in four speed-related accidents and received two speeding tickets. After one of Fred's friends was seriously injured in a speed-related accident, he began thinking about how he could persuade himself (and his friends) to slow down. His brainstorm resulted in a bumper sticker similar to those used on the back of fleet trucks. The stickers come in the three versions you mentioned: CALL MY MOM, CALL MY DAD and CALL MY PARENTS.
The bumper sticker's real potential is as a punishment for teens who drive recklessly. Instead of taking car privileges away entirely, parents can insist that their teenagers drive around with the sticker on the bumper for a designated period of time.
The bumper stickers may be purchased for $2 each or three for $5 by writing: Fred Stangle, P.O. Box 11633, Albuquerque, NM 87192. (Be sure to specify which parent is to be notified.)
I think it's a great idea!
DEAR ABBY: I am in a terrible spot. Debby is my best friend. She is very much in love with a fellow I'll call Richard. Debby thinks Richard loves her, too. Well, maybe he does, but yesterday Richard called me up and asked me to go out with him. I told him no.
Now, here's where you come in, Abby. Should I tell Debby that Richard asked me out? Or should I let her keep on being in love with a rat like him? Answer in the paper, please, and sign this . . . YES OR NO
DEAR YES OR NO: I vote no. If Debby really loves Richard, nothing you say will change her feelings for him. If you tell Debby that Richard asked you out, she might be angry with you. (When some people get bad news, they blame the messenger.)
Rats like Richard eventually trap themselves. And when that happens, Debby will need a good friend, and you will be there for her.
DEAR ABBY: I am writing in disgusted response to the letter signed "Dana From Colorado" about how humans could learn a lot from animals because they don't start forest fires, kill for money or take drugs. What idiocy! They don't build museums, preach sermons or work as Red Cross volunteers, either.
Animals do: fight (sometimes to the death) for territory, females and food; kill for sport; eat their young; mate unwilling females; kill the offspring of conquered males; banish their weak and old. They kill without any regard for the terror or pain of their victims, and may calmly start feeding while their dinner still struggles. Given the opportunity, they will indulge in alcohol and drugs to the point of death.
Respect animals, yes; worship them, no! They are not saints.- SHARI PRANGE, FELTON, CALIF.
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