DEAR ABBY: I have been with my boyfriend for two years. When I'm with him, I often find him annoying and think we have nothing in common. But when we are apart, I miss him a lot -- especially when one of us travels for work.
When we're apart and talk on the phone, we have amazing conversations and discuss a future together. But when we're together, we don't talk as much, and he never mentions a future together.
I'm confused. Is this normal for relationships? I don't want to stay in a relationship that isn't going anywhere, and it has been like this since pretty early on. -- PERPLEXED IN VIRGINIA
DEAR PERPLEXED: If neither of you is particularly talkative and there are a lot of distractions when you are together, then it's normal. When you are apart, it's possible that you miss -- and idealize -- each other, which is why those conversations about a future happen. The way to determine whether you should invest more time in this relationship would be to ASK him, and just as plainly as you addressed that question to me.
DEAR ABBY: Could you please print this on behalf of delivery people everywhere? Folks: Please make sure your address is visible from the street.
I can't tell you how many times I have had to drive up and down a street trying to figure out which house I'm supposed to deliver to. I can only begin to imagine how hard it is for couriers who deliver at night. -- WENDY IN CALIFORNIA
DEAR WENDY: I'm glad you wrote. People in your profession are not the only ones who struggle with this problem. I have also heard from fire and emergency personnel complaining about the same issue when the situation wasn't just inconvenient, but life-threatening.
DEAR ABBY: My husband and I have been arguing over whether food must be covered while it's being heated in the microwave. I always cover it because it takes little effort and prevents splatters. He refuses, unless the food is very saucy or greasy. When I ask why he won't do it, he has no answer.
It would be one thing if he routinely cleaned the microwave, but he never does. This has caused shouting matches between us. How can we settle this, short of throwing away the microwave? -- UNCOVERED OUT WEST
DEAR UNCOVERED: Do not toss out a perfectly good microwave over this issue. Praise your husband when he covers the saucy/greasy foods, and remember to throw a paper towel over his dinner when he "forgets."