Magazine article The Spectator

Dear Mary

Magazine article The Spectator

Dear Mary

Article excerpt

Q. The other day my wife and I were invited by a successful but absent-minded biochemist and his wife to their elegant apartment for a drink at 6.30 or so. We were expected, as was evidenced by a dish of tomato and anchovy bits, but they only offered us glasses of V8 vegetable juice. We longed for a dash of alcohol. What should we have said?

A.B., Bellac, France

A. You could have swirled a mouthful of the mixture around your palate, then mused, You know, when I was a boy, young women were warned by their mothers about the insidious dangers of vodka, "You can't smell it and you can't taste it," they would say, "so boys sometimes slip it into your drink at a party so they can take advantage of you." And, do you know,' you could have climaxed, `they were right. I can't smell or taste the vodka in here at all.'

Q. I have put on such a lot of weight recently that I am embarrassed even to allow my beloved husband to see me in the bath. I do not wish to use a disguising bubble bath as the bubbles tend to go cold around the back of my neck. Can you suggest any solution?

FE, Winchelsea, Sussex

A. Simply use a product such as Jo Malone's Lime, Basil & Mandarin bath oil, a capful of which will make your bathwater sufficiently cloudy to obscure from your husband the full extent of your newly acquired bulk. …

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