Heart to Heart: Lemons for sale, not cheap


Lemons for sale, not cheap
Dear Hillary,
I am having dreadful problems trying to buy a second-hand car. I don’t have much to spend, but I want a good one, and I think that my B. 100,000 budget should be sufficient. I have trudged in and out of so many car sales outlets, I am starting to recognize the faces of the sales executives, but it is obvious they only want to steer me in the direction of cars five times my budget. Have you any fool proof way to make sure I don’t buy a lemon?

Dear Charlie,
Dare I say it, “cheap” Charlie? I do believe that your budget is a little on the low side but I can help you to avoid buying a lemon. Firstly, my parsimonious (like that word?) Petal, don’t go buying a car in the fruit market, because that’s where they sell lemons. Secondly, see if there is any warranty with the car (and that’s a written warranty). Thirdly, go to the Classified ads section of this newspaper and see if there is a listing of the car you want, and if not, put an ad in the ‘Wanted’ section. There is more than just people on the run in this town in the wanted section! I also suggest you take a trusted Thai friend with you when you are looking at cars in the lots.

Windy below
Dear Hillary,
I suffer from an ‘airy bottom’ if you get the drift of my query to you (quite different from a ‘hairy bottom’ please). In the private confines of my own salon at home, this does not produce a problem, but at the office with the usual loo under the stairs, and the staff all queuing up behind me, it becomes very embarrassing. The office girls are already looking askance at me, and some have even begun spraying air-fresh after my visit. Have you any suggestions that can help?

Dear Windy,
The answer to your melodious but malodorous problem is not easy, my Petunia. It sounds (if you’ll excuse the pun) like you may have to take evasive rather than evacuative action here. Where is the closest large hotel relative to your office? When in desperation, Hillary has always found that by striding purposely through the foyer of the nearest hotel and heading towards the far right corner you will usually find a toilet. Whilst not in the privacy of your own ‘salon’ as you so nicely put it, at least no-one knows who is playing the bugle in the next stall. As far as a long term ‘cure’ is concerned, this is well out of my territory, but I would recommend you find a copy of the book Le Petomane (long out of print, so try Amazon dot com) as the author had the same problem as you, but used it to his advantage to make a large amount of money. He is quoted as having farted his way to a fortune, so there is a noisy but financial future ahead for you, my Petal. You will need to have some satin shorts made with allowance made for exhaust gas escape, but the book has the description you need.

Department store infatuation
Dear Hillary,
I would like to show my interest in getting to know a Thai girl a bit better, more than just shop talk. She works in a department store and is always very pleasant when I talk to her, but I’ve been going slow as I don’t want her to think that I am like all the other ‘kiss and run’ foreigners.

Dear Victor,
I am so pleased, Petal. There are still some romantic men out there. It is just a shame I don’t meet any! However, you have to tread slowly. Your problem is that your lady may not even know of your dreams, she may just be being polite. Have you thought of that? In this Land of Smiles, there are many different smiles to mean all kinds of different things. Be brave, a faint heart ne’er won a fair lady (or even a dusky one). Lots of luck!

TV time out
Dear Hillary,
I have not been here very long, but after two weeks I have now got a steady girlfriend. She has invited me to go up to her village for a couple of days and stay with her mother in her mother’s house. Now she is talking about buying a TV set for the folks, but I get the feeling it is me who is going to buy this. Am I being played for a sucker?

Dear Newbie,
Yes you are. Run now!