Dear Justin

Each week, I will post questions folks e-mailed me the week before, followed by my response.

common sense isn’t always common – especially when it comes to dirty fingernails

Dear Justin,

I always have dirty fingernails. What can I do?

Crappy Cuticles

Portland, Oregon

Dear Crappy,

Are your cuticles literally “crappy?” If so, I recommend using more toilet paper. For general dirty fingernails, I’d say the problem comes from not cleaning them properly. Try mixing pretzel salt with your hand soap. If that doesn’t work, get rid of your fingernails altogether. They’re not worth the aggravation this is apparently causing.

Dear Justin,

For the past month, my wife’s mother has been staying with us while she recovers from surgery. The problem is the woman stays in our guest room, which is adjacent to our bedroom in our small house, and falls asleep to Cinemax playing very loudly, then screams in the middle of the night when she wakes up to see softcore porn has come on. Then she yells for my wife or me (it’s usually me) to change the channel. What can I do?

Sleepless in Simpsonville

Porn-viewing mothers-in-law can be a real pest – especially the freeloading variety

Simpsonville, South Carolina

Dear Sleepless,

Have you talked to your wife about this? This sounds like something she’s in a better position to address than you. Since you are outnumbered in this (your wife and her mother vs. you), the only thing you can do is hope for the best. If your wife does not understand, accuse her mother of faking her injury or at least blowing it out of proportion. Give the woman a time limit and stick to it. Stray dogs will keep coming as long as you keep leaving food out for them.

There’s little sense in trying to be male and female at the same time … or sporting a mullet

Dear Justin,

I have had a mullet for 22 years. I am 27-year-old man. Do you think it’s time for a change?

Helmet Hair

Cummings, Georgia

Dear Helmet,

If you have done your research, think it’s time for a change and your doctor says it’s okay, I would definitely make the switch. According to Wikipedia, 1 in 30,000 males seek sex change operations each year. Good luck.

Dear Justin,

A few of days ago, I was working on a project inside my utility shed in the back yard. When I finished for the day, I closed the shed and locked the door. The next day when I resumed work, I noticed it smelled awful, as if something had died inside. I figured it was a mouse or even a bird that’d come through the roof vents. Yesterday my girlfriend announced she had not seen her cat. Terror engulfed me like an errant cookie sheet of firm Jell-O. I later went out to the shed and found the cat’s petrified remains tucked between a rusty bicycle and the leg of my table saw. It looked as though it had tried to lick the grease off the bike chain to hydrate itself and got its tongue stuck. All I could picture was Sarah McLachlan sitting on that stupid couch. How do I get out of this? Do I tell her? It was an honest mistake.


There’s no time to be a pussy when you find a dead pussy

Baton Rouge, Louisiana


Do you still have the body? You need to get rid of it when she’s not around and simply play dumb for the rest of your life. Why would you even consider telling her this happened? You might as well lock yourself in the shed along with Fluffy’s remains – at least that way she might believe you died trying to save the cat. “Honest mistake?” That’s the dumbest thing I’ve read all day. Concerned, you need to stop e-mailing me and get to work. The clock is ticking; you could be the next to go.

Dear Justin is really Justin Schoenberger of Greenwood, South Carolina. You can e-mail your questions to him at

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