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Posts Tagged ‘Harry Jaffe’

NOT Harry and Louise

It’s time again for another edition of NOT Harry and Louise. It’s where we take the questions submitted to the advice column by Washingtonian’s Harry Jaffe and his wife Louise, and answer them Fishbowl style. As we often say, if THEY’RE qualified to give advice, WE’RE qualified to give advice. So, let’s kick this off with their question from Romantic Reader:

I started dating a man three months ago. We see each other every weekend, we talk on the phone each evening (he lives an hour away, so we don’t see each other during the week), we laugh each time we speak, we both love being on the water canoeing and kayaking, and we sometimes watch TV together while talking on the phone and falling asleep. I can imagine this relationship continuing in a positive direction.

There is just one problem. He doesn’t read. I don’t mean he doesn’t know how to read, but he chooses not to read–anything. He joked that the last book he read was in junior high school. He is a college graduate, and I know he is intelligent based on our lengthy conversations. I always have my nose in a book, and I enjoy discussing what I am reading with my friends and colleagues.

Is this something I can overlook in a potential partner? I don’t know because I have never been attracted to anyone other than the erudite type.

When you enter into a relationship with someone, you will undoubtedly run into some conflicts. No matter how perfect you think your bond is, you will always find something to harp on. That’s just life. The question you have to ask yourself is..  ”What’s a deal breaker?” For us, someone who “doesn’t read” is a deal breaker. It’s not even that you should be looking for a spouse who is a book worm. The blanket statement of “he chooses not to read” indicates that you’re on an unsustainable path. Sure, you’ll be able to win practically every argument you ever get in with this shaved gorilla, but just imagine what happens when you run out of shit to talk about. (It happens.) If he’s “not a reader”, we can ONLY imagine what kind of movies he’s into. Let me guess. He thinks Jean-Claude van Damme got ROBBED of an Oscar for Bloodsport? If you’re smart enough to recognize that it might be a problem, he’s dumb enough to never wise up and learn to read. So, R-U-N out the door.

But, what do we know. We don’t have an advice column in Washingtonian magazine like Jaffe and his wife. What’s their advice? Let’s start with Harry… Read more

NOT Harry and Louise

It’s time again for our installment of NOT Harry and Louise, our advice column where we answer the questions submitted to Washingtonian’s Harry Jaffe and his wife, Louise. We’re not exactly qualified to give advice, but if Harry and Louise are qualified, then so are we. So, this week, it’s a very special edition of NOT Harry and Louise. More about that later. But, first, here’s the question from Bald in Bowie.

I’m hoping you can help resolve this fight between my wife and me. For the past several years, I have participated in triathlons to help raise money for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. I’ve lost too many friends and watched even more do battle with cancer, and I wanted to try to help. So I’ve joined a group that raises money for the society. In a few weeks, we are hosting a large bake sale hoping to raise as much money as we can. I asked my wife if she would have a problem with me shaving my four-year-old’s head and eyebrows. He’s very fair-skinned, and people may look at him and think that he’s undergoing chemotherapy. My argument is that all of the money we collect from the stunt will go to fight cancer. I’ve asked three different cancer survivors and patients how they feel about it, and they agree that if the money is going to fight cancer, it’s a good idea. My wife disagrees. Help!

Bald in Bowie

I find this question hilarious. And I’m particularly sympathetic to this questioner. Because it’s me. No, really. I wanted to submit my own question to Harry & Louise, to see if we would have the same advice. Maybe I was getting a little freaked out that we’ve been agreeing too much recently. As you may have guessed, I’m the person raising money for leukemia patients and I want to shave my young son’s head to try and get sympathy donations. I’ll repeat..  ALL OF THE MONEY RAISED goes to help cancer patients. So, I’m totally fine with the idea. Much to my surprise, Harry and Louise disagree with me. Let’s start with Harry.

“There’s no doubt that raising money for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society is a worthy cause. …But your son is healthy. Kind of a scam, really.”

Calling it a scam might be taking it a little far. Keep in mind that no one is telling people that my young son has cancer, I’d just be letting them make that assumption on their own. Maybe my fair-skinned kid just likes to run around looking like Powder. But, it’s not REALLY a scam if I don’t lie about anything.

Surely, Louise will take my side on this, right??

“Your son will learn so much by watching you devote yourself to causes that are important to you. …Take him to the bake sale. Have him help make some of the treats.”

The kid is barely four years old. I don’t want to have him help me bake. Besides, the one time he did help bake, his brûlée came out too runny and we had to start over. But, that’s not important. What’s important is that he could be used for the greater good to raise money for a good cause. So, I stand by my original decision and still think it’s a good idea. Now, who wants some damn brownies?

NOT Harry and Louise

It’s time again for our advice column, NOT Harry and Louise. We had a bit of a scare when we checked in on Harry and Louise to see that their column was lost in the shuffle of a Washingtonian website redesign, but have no fear. Your outcries were heard and Washingtonian has corrected this most egregious of errors. Which means we have a fresh question submitted to Harry Jaffe and his wife, Louise, to answer for them. Because if THEY’RE qualified to give advice, WE’RE qualified to give advice. So here we go.

My husband took a golfing trip with his buddies last week. It’s an annual trip they have been taking for a few years, balanced by a trip I take with my girlfriends for a week or so. All good, so far.

My husband doesn’t do much social media–no Facebook, no Twitter. I am not a creature of the Web, yet I do have a Facebook page. The night before my husband returned, one of my friends e-mailed me and said I should check out her husband’s Facebook page. She said there were some “interesting” pictures from the golf trip. Sure enough, his Facebook had dozens of pictures from the trip. Many were of the guys laughing in golf carts and shrugging in sand traps. But there were more than a few of the boys carousing in bars. What was “interesting” to my friend–and to me, unfortunately–is that my husband seemed to have one woman by his side in every picture. She was cute and perky, a bit of a ginger–in other words, just his type. She looked just like his ex-wife. In all the pictures, the bars were different, the crowd changed, but this woman was always by my husband’s side.

What do I do? I’m scared of talking to him about it but too anxious to keep it to myself. We are at a wonderful point in our marriage, or so I thought. We have been together for five years and have started to talk about having a baby.

Please help.

Worried Webmistress

When I was a kid, I always heard rumors that in Myrtle Beach, there was a magical restaurant that was right next door to a strip club. In the men’s restroom, there was a backdoor that connected the two establishments. All the men who went on golfing trips and had to bring along their spouses would always take them to dinner here and then claim tummy trouble to spend large chunks of time in the bathroom. Meanwhile, they’d be at the top secret strip club. I don’t know if such a place exists, but I tell you that story to prove a point. If you are a man and you’re on a golfing trip with your buddies, you’re thinking of more than just balls and shafts. You’re also thinking about balls and shafts. It’s the classic test of the strength of a relationship. Can it survive the “weekend with the guys”?

For men with more self control, they approach the weekend with the mindset that it’s okay to try to recapture some of their misspent youth by flirting with women while away from home. Men with even less self control get carried away and act on all that flirting. Sit him down RIGHT NOW and find out who the hell that lady was. Maybe he wasn’t cheating. Hell, he needs to be punished just for being so stupid that he let those pictures get out. So, what’s worse? Being married to a cheater? Or being married to a moron? Either way, make him come clean. Keep in mind that the only thing worse than a cheating husband is a wife who won’t let her man go out and have fun with friends. Just make sure that everyone agrees on what the definition of “fun” is.

But, that’s just us. What the hell do we know? We aren’t seasoned advice columnists like Jaffe and his wife, Louise. How did THEY approach this?  Let’s start with Harry.

“I can see why you might find the photos disturbing, but frankly, I don’t see anything even remotely incriminating in what you described.”

Come on, Harry. You’re really saying that it might be a total coincidence that this dude was photographed in several different bars and it might have been “simple happenstance”??? That is LITERALLY the worst excuse that any man could come up with in this situation… Read more

SAVE Harry and Louise

Each week in the Fishbowl, we’ve been bringing you a column where we help Harry Jaffe and his wife, Louise, with their advice column in Washingtonian. Jaffe is an accomplished, well-respected journalist and we’ve always found it a little weird that he’s answering relationship advice questions with no real qualifications. So, we’ve been answering the questions that their readers submit. As we always say, if THEY’RE qualified to give advice, WE’RE qualified to give advice.

So, this morning, when we ventured to their website to get some fresh questions, GASP! The page is down!! The Washingtonian website is still functional, but when we click on our bookmarked link, we get this message: Read more

NOT Harry and Louise

Once again, it’s time for FishbowlDC’s advice column, NOT Harry and Louise. Since Washingtonian thought it was appropriate to give Harry Jaffe and his wife, Louise, an advice column, we figure we can have one too. So, each week, we’ll take questions that are submitted to their advice column and kindly offer our own spin — for their benefit as much as ours. Because if THEY’RE qualified to have an advice column, WE’RE qualified to have an advice column. So, here’s this week’s question from Worried in Wheaton:

Dear Harry and Louise:

My daughter attends a small private school in the Washington suburbs. It purports to be a community where the feelings and health of each student are nurtured. My daughter, who is in fifth grade, started coming home from school sad a few weeks ago. She would go up to her room, close the door, get on her computer, and stay there until dinner. Then she would return after dinner. When I asked why she stopped joining the family to chat or watch TV, she said she was doing homework.

Last week, after my daughter went to school, I checked her computer. Turns out she was g-chatting all afternoon and night. The conversations revealed a number of nasty exchanges among students. Many of the mean comments were directed at my daughter. Now I know why she was sad—dare I say depressed.

Should I have checked her computer? Can I do anything to help her? Is this bullying, and is the school responsible?

Wow. OK, this is a sticky situation….

Read more

NOT Harry and Louise

This week’s installment of NOT Harry and Louise tackles a sensitive topic: Sex in public places.  It’s such a sensitive topic, in fact, that Washingtonian magazine wanted to put their most qualified advice columnists on the case. And since they weren’t available, Harry Jaffe and his wife, Louise, address the question. And if THEY’RE qualified to give advice, WE’RE qualified to give advice. So, here’ this week’s question from Covered Up in the Capitol.

Dear Harry and Louise:

I’ve been with my SO for a couple years, and I want him to be the one. But lately he’s been sort of pressuring me into having sex in a historic place in Washington where one of us works. We could probably do this after hours and not get caught, though that poses a real risk—but I’m not sure if that risk is why I keep putting my guy off. I don’t think I’m a prude or uptight, and one thing I like about him is his unorthodox side (he’s more adventurous and has a higher erotic charge, but that just might be a guy thing).

As a point of persuasion, he brought up a story about a congressman and his wife who had sex at the Capitol Building, so I Googled it and found out it was about 30 years ago, and now the wife says it never happened. He also brought up some news story about Newt Gingrich having an affair in his car, but that was also adultery, and I flat-out refuse any link to something like that.

I don’t think this public icon sex adventure is a “get it or go” issue for him, but what troubles me most about it is how our future relationship will proceed, whatever I do.

What do you think, and what should I do?

Covered Up in the Capitol

Considering how often the Members that work in the Capitol screw the American people, it’s only appropriate that your boyfriend wants to do the same thing to you. Guys are weird that way, though. We want sex in the car, we want it in our childhood bedroom, we want it in the three minutes immediately following the last time we had sex with you. If you’re going to be with him forever, you’ll just have to get used to this behavior.

As for office sex, it is rarely a good idea. It would be a serious mood-killer to be in the throes of passion with your beloved and look over to see a portrait of your boss, Senator Snodgrass, staring back at you from the beach trip he took with his plus-sized wife and snot-nosed kids.

But, if you do feel the need to give into your man’s carnal desires, may we suggest this list of public places in Washington to erect a monument.

- Duck inside of one of the lunar capsules at the Air and Space Museum for a blastoff like no other. Who knows, you may even see Uranus.

- Give Honest Abe a lapdance that he’ll never forget after hours at the Lincoln Memorial.

- Re-enact Adam and Eve and the National Arboretum.

Whatever you decide on, just make sure you make this decision together and don’t let him pressure you into something that you’re not comfortable with. That’s Congress’s job.

But, what do we know? We’re no expert, so let’s turn to Harry and Louise to see how they address this issue….

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Females on Campaign Trail Go For Sexpot Look

Forget about SexyTwitPics. Washington has its own crop of would-be sexy females on the loose. And an unusual trend is developing among campaign and White House reporters of the XX persuasion. They’re using provocative, sometimes sexy photographs of themselves for their Twitter accounts.

While Bloomberg is among the few outlets with strict tweeting policies (hardly any reporters are truly allowed to let loose on the medium) this is largely unexplored territory for most news organizations who tend to use the vague, unenforced “common sense” rule more than anything else.

We spoke with Brad Phillips, president of Phillips Media Relations and author of the Mr. Media Training Blog, about the matter. He’s a former journalist with ABC News and CNN. While he said none of the pictures we showed him struck him as particularly “bad” or necessarily overly “sexually suggestive”, he does see potential pitfalls. “The bigger issue, from my perspective, is whether those images (and others like them) represent their brands as well as possible,” Phillips said. “News organizations will have to decide whether having star reporters making silly faces on camera, posing artistically, or wearing skin-bearing dresses is congruent with their brand image. In some cases, that answer is yes – younger, hipper news organizations can push the envelope more. But I’d maintain that news organizations should consider issuing social media guidelines regarding appropriate avatars to try to maintain brand consistency and prevent embarrassing incidents.”

He reasoned, “I think it’s okay for reporters to be playful — as a profile picture it does strike me as odd that that is the image they want the world to see, especially when they are writing for stodgier publications.” Then he brought up a subject some find contentious: gender scrutiny. “More often, women have to fight to be taken seriously,” he said. “I think it’s unfair that women are judged on this. But my concern is, are they doing anything to undermine their credibility? For anyone in the reputation management business, that would be a great concern.”

We also checked in with Washingtonian‘s intrepid advice columnist and longtime media scribe Harry Jaffe on the question of these provocative pictures. He had another take on it, which was simply, why not? “Foxy Fox babes, yes,” Jaffe remarked. “That’s what they have going for them. How sexy? Cleavage? Kate Upton sexy? Seriously…. unless it’s truly x-rated, I think it’s within bounds to strike a cute, perhaps sexy, pose. It sells.”

Here is an initial sampling. If you spot any more, please send to

In this first crop, we have NYT‘s Ashley Parker, LAT‘s Maeve Reston and The Hill’s Amie Parnes.

NOT Harry and Louise

It’s time again for FishbowlDC’s advice column, NOT Harry and Louise. It’s a weekly feature where we take the questions that people ask Washingtonian’s Harry Jaffe and his wife, Louise, in their advice column and answer them ourselves. Because, as we’ve said before, if they’re qualified to have an advice column, WE’RE qualified to have an advice column. So, let’s jump straight into it with this week’s question from Fogey Dad

Dear Harry and Louise:

Our adult son lives in a different city, so we turned his old room into a study. When he visits, he stays in the guest room, a converted porch with its own entrance. One morning during a recent visit, I quietly entered the room to get something from a bureau drawer—only to discover he wasn’t alone. I mumbled an apology and retreated. He later appeared in the kitchen by himself, the young lady having left by the rear exit. I suggested it might not be appropriate to have his date—or whoever—spend the night. He said they were adults and hadn’t disturbed anyone. I said something about not running a hotel. You get the picture. He really did seem surprised that I would object. Am I just old-fashioned?

—Fogey Dad

This is a tricky one, Fogey Dad. At some point, you’ll need to realize that you’ve done all the raising of that child that you can possibly do. So, no point in trying to teach him right from wrong on this matter. But, since he is an adult, he should live by adult rules. Which means that if he offends someone as a house guest, he should deal with the consequences. While it wouldn’t really offend us, if it bothers you that he was scoring under your roof, let him know that he’s not invited there unless he wants to practice celibacy.

But, what the hell do we know? We’re just writers. Not seasoned advice-givers like Jaffe and his wife, Louise. What did they have to say on the matter? While Louise initially defends your rights as the homeowner, she does muster some sympathy for your son, the stud.

I’m dying to know what all-important item you needed from the guest bureau so early in the morning. Couldn’t it have waited until after lunch? There’s no need to interrupt your guest’s languid mornings. …Most of us aren’t at our most presentable early in the morning and appreciate privacy until we’re ready to face the world with our freshly washed faces and fully covered bottoms.

Who knew that Louise was so progressive in her bedroom behavior? We applaud that type of forward thinking, Louise. If only your prudish husband would agree. Sadly, Harry comes across as a bit of a “Fogey” himself.

Here’s what he had to say…

Read more

NOT Harry and Louise

In this week’s edition of NOT Harry and Louise, we tackle a sensitive topic. Sexual harassment. Normally, a topic such as this requires a thoughtful approach, but since Washingtonian thinks that Harry Jaffe and his wife, Louise, are qualified to give advice, screw it. We’d also like to weigh in. So, here’s this week’s question from Concerned Coworker:

An interesting, but sad, state of affairs seems to be brewing at my workplace. Apparently, “Derek,” my coworker and friend, has been bothering at least four of our female coworkers, who are all in their twenties. Almost every day, I am barraged with stories about how he is touching someone’s hair, giving impromptu and unwanted back massages, and making inappropriate comments and propositions. On one hand, this has become amusing office chatter. But on another hand, sexual harassment is no laughing matter. Derek is in his forties and married with two children. He says he loves his wife and has no plans to leave her, but claims they are not having enough sexual relations for his liking. I realize he may be very unhappy with the current status of his marriage, but this surely does not give him the right to manhandle any of our coworkers. Although I have not personally witnessed any of Derek’s escapades, I have seen some questionable behavior.

Since I am the oldest (and allegedly the wisest) of the lot of us, I feel I should take some action. And as a woman, I feel a certain obligation to protect the younger ones here at work.

My options include: (1) Mind my own business, do absolutely nothing, and let the victims fight their own battles; (2) take Derek out for lunch to try to talk it out and suggest he straighten up and fly right; or (3) have a chat with our supervisor, and suggest she handle this situation. Before I had knowledge of these circumstances, I had offered to help Derek find another job. But I’ve decided I just can’t put my reputation on the line if this is how he chooses to handle himself at work.

OUR advice…

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Washingtonian Takes the High Road

Washingtonian has posted their February cover. The lead story explores “Washington’s Secret Love Affair with Marijuana.” It examines the prevalence of reefer throughout the region. And apparently, it isn’t just for breakfast anymore. Washingtonian says that it’s a large part of life for “soccer moms and power players.” Why stop at soccer moms and power players? Maybe it’s infiltrated the newsrooms of Washington, D.C. It would certainly help explain some of the decisions that are made at

Also in this month’s issue, Todd Kliman offers tips on dining out with kids and of course Harry Jaffe will have a poorly thought out advice column with his wife piece on the 108 murders that happened in DC last year. The mag hits stands tomorrow if you want to snag one.

Grab a slurpee and a microwave burrito while you’re at it. In case you get the munchies.