Wow! I had so much fun giving free advice last week that I'm going to do it all over again! But first I want to tell you about a certain problem you run into when there are no girls living at your house.

Yes. I know. Technically speaking, I'm a female. But since I'm OLD and also the mom, I don't count when it comes to advising sons about women. Besides, there's lots of stuff moms don't know about. They cannot tell you, for example, what kind of flowers you should give a girl for homecoming.

Take it from me. Your mother will be inclined to say, "Dude! Buy her a big old honkin' lime green orchid corsage!" because that's what she wore when she went to the homecoming dance in 1973. She got all dressed up in her homemade pink eyelet formal and waited in the living room (with her parents!) until her date arrived.

Her date showed up wearing a tux and smelling of Elsha while packing a corsage the size of a small shrub, which he then tried to pin on her dress without accidentally touching a random breast in front of her mother and also her father just like in that commercial.

The point is there weren't a lot of floral options in the '70s when it came to homecoming dances.

It's different now, and a sister close to your own age could guide you in your decisionmaking process. She could go "give her a loose wrap" or a "wrist corsage" or a "how about a nosegay?" because she would know what the girls at your high school are all about. Which probably ISN'T a corsage the size of her head. Also, a sister could say, "Lose the lame chin hairs while you're at it" and you might actually listen to her. But whatever. I'm not bitter when young males related to me ignore my suggestions about unattractive chin hair.

So. What do a mother and a son do if there's not a sister around to give them input? You have conversations like this one:

ME: I think you're supposed to give your date some flowers.

SON: I am?

ME: Yes. You are. So what kind of flowers do you want to give her?

SON: Um. Some not dead ones?

OK. My son didn't say that. But he didn't know what kind of flowers to order when I asked him about it and NEITHER DID I. So my son and I just stared at each other anxiously, knowing that the two of us would probably make the wrong floral decision and thereby ruin his date's life.

Which brings me to the advice I want to give this week. If you decide to go ahead and give birth to a bunch of boys, PLEASE decide to have a girl while you're at it because take it from someone with absolutely no experience — sisters and daughters come in handy.

(P.S. In the end, we talked to my favorite florist who said, "Go with the nosegay," which turned out to be a good call, so here's another piece of advice. If you can't a have a daughter, then by all means find yourself a decent florist.)


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