What Would the Setbacks Do?

Many, Many Souls Saved Since 2002

Here's where we, the Setbacks, get a chance to answer your questions and give general advice on anything you'd like to ask us.

Email questions to advice[at]thesetbacks.com


    Cease and Desist

    October 31st, 2019

    Fred Kibbles, Esquire writes:

    Good afternoon,

    I am writing on behalf of my client Trevor Kealey. Mr. Kealey has recently noticed that The Setbacks back catalogue has appeared on popular music streaming services like iTunes, Spotify, Deezer and Tidal.

    My client was not adequately consulted on this development and so I must request that any royalties that have been incurred thus far be placed in a trust account and all music be removed from these services immediately until such a time that Mr. Kealey can properly negotiate a satisfactory arrangement for his fair share of the writing credits.

    Please notify me once these steps have been taken.

    Fred Kibbles
    Kibbles & Bitts, Attorneys at Law

    Awaiting wisdom...

    Awaiting wisdom...

    Awaiting wisdom...

    Kibbles. You're a piece of shit.

    You've been the Yoko Ono to this band for 10 years. I'll never forget that night when you gave Trevor your stupid card after our show at the Dominion. You pissed in his ear. From that moment on he's been talking "necessary disproportionate shares" and has been insisting he wrote all of our debut blue album - which is obviously not true. He's practically turned into Axl Rose circa 1994. He's Mark Zuckerberg in The Social Network. He's David Lee Roth after 1984, man. Have you any idea what you've done? You turned him into a monster.

    TO THIS DAY he insists that The Setbacks should change their name to "Trevor Kealey & The Setbacks." It's annoying as fuck because we've been on hiatus for a bunch of years.

    I've had enough of your shenanigans. I've retained Shapiro and Shapiro as counsel and will fight - TOOTH AND NAIL, KIBBLES - to prevent you from ruining what remains of my precious music legacy. I'm not giving up the $2.75 per year I make from our hit song being on Nickelodeon. I have bills, child support, and a nagging addiction to computer duster that I inherited from my time with this band. Any ounce of dignity I have left WILL NOT be left to be picked apart by a litigious vulture like yourself.

    Pass the Tums

    March 10th, 2015

    Saul Downsend writes:

    Hey guys,

    I've followed this column for years. Are you still taking questions? I hope so!

    Every year I take a trip down to Austin with my close friends to partake in South by Southwest. I'm not sure why an airline puts on a music festival, but that's not really here nor there.

    Anyways, I consider myself to have a fairly sophisticated palate. As you can probably imagine the majority of the cuisine available in Austin is of the "Tex Mex" variety. I like that - trust me I do - but my friends insist on taking us to this one Tex Mex restaurant for breakfast pretty much EVERY DAY when we're there. It's all tacos, burritos, enchiladas and refried beans. Which I enjoy - trust me I do - but after day 3 it does do a bit of a number on my digestive tract so I'd like to mix it up a bit and suggest we try something new. However, I'm worried that my friends will be unreceptive to the list of suggestions I've collected from Yelp.

    Can you offer any advice on how I broach this with them?

    Listen SAUL! When in doubt, go with KISS. Not the over rated rock band, the clever acronym: Keep It Simple or Something.

    If your tummy is having a Tough Situation, just go take that size 10 in one of the other guys' hotel room bathrooms. Just destroy that toilet. They'll think twice before suggesting another south of the border meal.

    Awaiting wisdom...

    Awaiting wisdom...

    Hey Saul,

    There's millions of people with no food on this planet, and you're flying to Texas, where the toast is 10 times bigger. Sure - you might have a bad case of this shits - but is that the worst thing that's ever happened to you? I'd bet, no.

    I don't think you should bring this up at all with your friends. It's not like you guys are sharing a room, right? It's not like you're sharing a bed with your friends - nose to toes - like Charlie's grandparents were as they downed cabbage soup. On that note - you might want to bring along a DVD of Charlie & The Chocolate Factory, just for shits and giggles. In case the point is lost on you - if and when you your intestines begin fermenting whatever you ate, you have options when it comes to privacy. Let mother nature work it out, and save the pretentiousness for your boss.

    Bottom line is - friends before culinary preferences, Saul. As a sidenote - I'd highly recommend checking out Applebee's at 6315 S IH 35 Frontage Rd when you're there. I had a wonderful basket of chicken fingers on my last visit to Texas' state capital. The chicken was perfectly cooked and the breading was fresh, vibrant, and interesting. The presentation was also a 10, and the service was lively and attentive.

    The Presidential Election

    October 29th, 2012

    Roger Flapjacks writes:

    Hi Setbacks,

    Rog here, from New Mexico. I just found you online when I searched for "advice", using MSN search - the world's best search experience. Anyways...

    I was recently having lunch with a co-worker of mine, when I spotted my Dad leaving a Howard Johnson across the street from my office with another woman. I didn't think anything of it until he kissed her passionately before they both entered a taxi, and took off like they were on the 3:10 to Yuma. My Dad has been married to my Mom for 37 years. They're celebrating a wedding anniversary next month.

    What should I do?

    LISTEN Flapjacks! Why is the subject of your question the presidential election? Also, why are you including details about a lunch? And why are you including details about anniversaries? According to the show Criminal Minds, which I never watch, the more details you add the more likely it is you are lying. But at the same time, if people of TV shows didn't automatically offer up every detail the show would not move forward, so they basically have to lay it all on the line.

    What I'm getting at is with this level of detail you should be scripting some crime dramas for NBC, not fretting about living in a broken family. With Obama re-elected I've been led to believe that family no longer exists, so run with it.

    First off, I'm sure that there's a perfectly logical explanation for all of this.

    Based on what you've told us, my guess would be that your Dad is having a salacious affair with this woman. In fact, he probably had sex with her moments before you saw him. I suspect he wanted to meet her at the Howard Johnson because he didn't want your Mom finding out. Why? Most likely your Mom would be pretty angry if she knew about this other woman. That's usually the way these things shake out.

    Not to be a Captain Buzzkill, but statistically speaking, if your Dad is cheating now he's probably been doing it for their entire marriage. I'm glad that you're hearing this from someone trustworthy you found on MSN Search like us.

    Awaiting wisdom...

    Hi Roger,

    First of all - what does this have to do with the presidential election?

    Well - after considering your problem for 3 seconds, I have the following advice to offer.

    I think you should get "real" about what's going on here. Your Dad is on Ashley Madison, man. Assuming you don't know Ashley Madison, I'll fill you in. Ashley Madison is not hotel lady's name. It's a website.


    Married people get on this site, and hook up with other people.

    I guess the question is what are your parents doing for the wedding anniversary? Outback Steakhouse again? What are you going to get them? Oh I know. Nothing.

    I'd write your Dad an email and let him know - as sensitively as you can - that you know about his Hojo rendez-vous and that you need some money. I can guarantee you that the likelihood of receiving a monetary gift from Pops will be high. Make this work for you in some way. This is a way better option than breaking the news to your Mom, and watching your Dad walk on eggshells around you could be priceless.

    Is there something wrong with me? (3 of 7)

    June 10th, 2011

    Kevin writes:

    This is one part of a 7-part question from Kevin where he asks the Setbacks whether his numerous "quirks" are normal or not...

    I absolutely hate and almost break down into a violent rage at the sound and smell of people eating yogurt. Especially if they smack their face when eating that shit.

    Listen KEVIN! As a non-licensed nutritionalist with no qualifications or credentials, I think it is obvious that you are not getting enough probiotics. Violent rage is a side effect of this lack. It is ironic that it is manifesting itself against yogurt, which is the best source of probiotics.

    On second thought, violent rage may be a side effect of not getting enough antibiotics. Have more penecillin. Or maybe it was a lack of robiotics. Use more robots.

    Wait, no, I remember now: it is from too much idiotics. You are being an idiot. Get over yourself and tolerate people eating regular foods.

    Whatever way you slice it, yogurt is revolting - especially if you can slice it. That mean it's definitely gone off and you need to get away from that shit. Quickly.

    That said, I'd probably say that this qualifies as a "non-normal" quirk.

    And because of that I'm going to try something different today, Kevin. I'm going to give you a bit of free advice: you might want to keep this quirk to yourself. It's not that a potential life mate might find this kind of behaviour slightly unattractive, it's that the reaction you're describing in a public place will get you forcibly restrained, body-slammed, and tazered by a team of RCMP officers. If you want to co-exist with the rest of us you need to learn to suppress this yogurt intolerance.

    By the way, I wrote this entire answer while relaxing in a bathtub full of yogurt.

    I can sympathize with your problem but there seems to be two separate issues here. Sound and smell. Let’s review the smell aspect of this issue. Yogurt doesn’t exactly have the greatest smell but it also is not that strong. This leads me to believe that you have an acute sensitivity to yogurt based smells. This leads me to believe that dairy has harmed you some how. This leads me to believe that you were possibly violated by a cow. This leads me to a mental picture of you crying with milk sprayed all over your face. This leads me to have nightmares.

    Conclusion: Stay away from rural areas.

    You’re welcome.

    Listen - I think this is a bit unusual, but you're not crazy. Something's souring you (heh!) off of Danone and Activia. You know how many times I've said that this year? About 100. More people than you think get grossed out or enraged by yogurt. I mean, the word "yogurt" sounds like something medical, or genital, or both.

    These days, I'm all about getting to the root of a trigger. SOMETHING turned you off of yogurt. Something in your past. Maybe something in your future. I don't know.

    The point is - what could have happened to you that creates this feeling of anger? I noticed that you mentioned that the "sound and smell" of someone eating yogurt makes you mental. NOT the SIGHT of someone eating yogurt. I thought about all of this, and then thought probably the best thing to do right off the bat is determine if your issue has a name. So, I did a quick search in Yahoo and came to this website:


    This website told me you have "Yogaphobia". This is the beginning of your search Kevin. I bid you farewell on your journey of self discovery, courtesy of the internet

    It's a great site by the way. I also learned about the street acronyms for COF, COB, FOB, POF, A2M2A, A2M2F, and what a "boston cream pie" is. Trust you me, it doesn't involve Boston.

    Is there something wrong with me? (2 of 7)

    February 15th, 2011

    Kevin writes:

    This is one part of a 7-part question from Kevin where he asks the Setbacks whether his numerous "quirks" are normal or not...

    When eating, I religiously portion out my food so that I have a constant ratio of all the things on my plate. I want every bite to have a bit of everything. No matter what the size of the servings on my plate, I always manage to budget my rations and get through a meal so that everything is being constantly rebalanced. My last bite is a bit of everything, always.

    Listen KEVIN! Everyone has eating quirks, and they are almost always harmless. Most people will ignore these quirks. If anything they are often good conversation starters, and help lead people to get to know the real you.

    For example, I refuse to eat anything phallic (bananas, popsicles, hotdogs, penises, etc). Nothing hurtful about that, but some people consider it weird. Paul only eats things he can prepare in a toaster oven. This is fine, but very unhealthy. We've all encouraged him to expand his pallet, but he can't get past chicken wings and cheese sticks. Steve refuses to close his mouth no matter what while eating. It's pretty gross, but not really bad. I recall a lunch meeting with David Geffen that was cut short as a result of this. Actually, I guess that is a really bad quirk, it did ultimately cost The Setbacks a real opportunity. Come to think of it, we should probably be really pissed of at Steve. Thanks for reminding me Kevin, now I'm definitely not accepting Steve's offer for a reunion tour.

    So I hope this makes you less self conscious about your eating habits. Next time you're sitting down to nosh with some buds, spend less time worrying about your 'quirk', and actually take a look at the other neanderthals at the table.

    Oh, I almost forgot Chris' eating quirk. He insists that the most efficient way to get nutrients from food is to stick it in his bum instead of his mouth. Come to think of it, this is what made me stop eating phallic foods.

    See that: full circle answer. Bam!

    I'm pretty sure this is exactly how Dexter Morgan eats all of his meals. It's this kind of bizarre attention to detail when it comes to performing such mundane tasks as eating that allow us to peer into the mind of a psychopath. Right now I'm glad I live 5000 KM away from you. In fact, I'm going to Facebook un-friend you and notify the police that you've made several threats to kill me just to cover my ass. Wait, that doesn't sound right... you didn't threaten to kill me so that you could physically cover up my ass... or maybe that's exactly what I want the police to think! Wait. That's it. You're a deranged psychopath who kills for pleasure and your calling card is to place a small towel over your victim's rear ends. You sick, sick man...

    I had to think about this one for a while. What life experience could push a person to portion out their food equally? What possible traumatic event could lead a person to be this anal? Then it hit me, this is a classic case of “Momma Bird Syndrome”. This is similar to the “Empty Nest Syndrome” that parents go through but this applies to the child.

    Let me explain. Growing up under your parents rule, meals are portioned out, clothes are provided, and toys allotted to each child. The child’s entire upbringing is controlled. Then when the child moves out of the house, they suddenly have infinite freedom. This is overwhelming for some to handle. To help balance this freedom, the child puts constraints on their daily life such as food portioning or curfews.

    Based on this diagnosis, I would also assume that you bring a sweater with you when you leave the house in case it gets cold. Am I right?

    Luckily the cure for this affliction is very simple: Grow the fuck up!

    Hi there Kevin,

    I've read your question, and if I'm being honest, I don't really think it's that weird. A little obsessive compulsive maybe - but weird? I don't think so. I prefer saving the word "weird" from really oddball situations and people. As an example, if you were doing this with human excrement, or mindlessly scribbled scraps of paper a la A Beautiful Mind - well then that would be weird, and I'd probably be making some comparisons to Howard Hughes later in life.

    Food is an essential part of who we are. Do whatever makes you more comfortable to get your four squares a day. I can unequivocally guarantee you that if you do that in the presence of a lady though, she'll probably think twice about being with you. Scale it back a tad on that front if you're on a date. That's it. Best of luck.

    Is there something wrong with me? (1 of 7)

    January 14th, 2011

    Kevin writes:

    This is one part of a 7-part question from Kevin where he asks the Setbacks whether his numerous "quirks" are normal or not...

    I cannot stand it when cupboard doors are left open. It doesn't matter if they are all the way open or just a crack. I have the uncontrollable urge to stop all that I was doing so that I can close them. I have to close them all. They all need to be level and the same. If they are not, I am irritated.

    Listen KEVIN! Sometimes the simplest answer is the best. We can guess at your overall condition till we're blue in the face, but we have to give you advice based on what information we have. In this case, you basically feel the need to close cupboard doors.

    The solution: keep closing them when you see them open. No harm in that. Unless you are spending all of your free time closing them, causing you to miss work and not bathe, etc. In that case, maybe consider either removing the doors completely (though this might push you over the edge), or nailing them shut and keeping all your kitchen stuff on the counter.

    Simple. Easy.

    Like Paul said - we're just dealing with the tip of the iceberg here... for all we know quirks 2 through 7 are "I can't help jamming a knife into the chest of anyone that looks at me the wrong way". Let's just assume that this is a typical quirk and all the rest are on the same level.

    Clearly, you suffer from crippling OCD. I'm not a doctor (yet) or a licensed psychiatrist (anymore) but I know a thing or two about obsessive-compulsive disorder. I know 1) there's a Wikipedia page about OCD and 2) I just quickly scanned it and discovered some alarming news that you should really keep in mind next time you feel the need to close all the cupboards.

    Unfortunately, since you're sept-dipping with 7 questions in 1 I'm only able to provide 1/7th of the helpful advice I would normally deliver in one of my responses. You'll have to deal with this one on your own, but I will say this: don't expose yourself to bright lights, never get yourself wet and NEVER EVER feed after midnight. I shudder to think what the consequences would be.

    This seems like a pretty easy issue to deal with. However I'm hesitant to give a diagnosis. The other 6 quirks might shed some light on other issues. Since I don't have that information, I'll treat this as an isolated question.

    You obviously have issues with having a small penis. The open cupboard doors are a metaphor for when, possibly when you were younger, you left the fly to your pants open and everyone saw your penis and laughed. Now to counteract this mental scarring, you are in a constant battle to close open "doors". In this world where giant appendages rule, some of us (myself excluded) are destined to be hung like a light switch.

    The cure for this affliction takes a long time and has many steps. Your confidence must first be destroyed even further and then slowly built back up. The first step involves walking around a public place with a banana hanging out the fly of your pants. The steps slowly escalate until you are comfortable with looking at a penis in an open cupboard. There are too many subtleties in the steps to go into detail on this short column. We may have to talk offline.

    Hi Kevin,

    Ever seen Poltergeist? There's a crazy scene where the kitchen gets absolutely fucked UP by ghosts. Here's a taste.


    How manic are you getting right now?

    First timer

    December 21st, 2010

    Anonymous writes:

    Hi guys,

    You totally rock and I miss seeing you play at the Dom! I'm a bit nervous about asking this, but here goes...

    I'm a 22 year old virgin and I've been dating a girl for almost 2 years now and I'm pretty sure we're going to get married. She's a virgin too and I want to make sure that when we do it (soon I hope!) that it's really special. I'm worried that if she doesn't like it she might break up with me... or worse... she'll decline the marriage proposal that I have planned for the moment immediately after we have sex for the first time.

    I need some help guys! How do I guarantee success?

    Listen ANONYMOUS! This is a common problem. You see, sex is like an onion. It's sweet when you first bite into it, but it can make you cry, and it can make your breath stink. So my advice is to use an onion for practice. Spend lots of time eating onions; raw, sauteed, boiled, anyway you can think of. Are you having spaghetti for supper? Toss in onions. Thinking of meatloaf this weekend? Top it with onions. Making your mom's famous cookie recipe? Just add onions.

    You see what I'm getting at. Eat a lot of onions, because onions are like sex.

    Negotiating the battlefields of love is tricky business. Just ask Pat Benetar. Actually, scratch that. What am I saying? You asked the Setbacks and the Setbacks are answering. Sorry Pat -- we got this one.

    Now, let's talk about your predicament. When I'm faced with a difficult decision relating to the stuff that happens under the sheets with your naughty bits I look to GOD -- not his high-holiness the Lord, I'm talking about Guaradians of Death (www.guardiansofdeath.com). GOD is a forum dedicated to serious discussion about Call of Duty Black Ops and Gears of War 3. Both of these are amazing games with killer multiplayer modes and tonnes of wicked aspects like team play, missions and very realistic graphics.

    I decided to take a bit of initiative and posted your question on the "Potpourri" section of the GOD forum. Here are a few responses I've already received after just a few hours -- a testament to how strong a community GOD is:

    From xxBlackOpsKill85xx:
    What's "sex"?

    From GearsHead1999:
    I'm not sure I follow either.

    From COD4Life:
    Can you explain what sex is? I can't answer until you do that.

    From GearPlayaHater:
    What's sex?

    So helpful as always. Thanks guys!

    I like to lay out the options for people, show the pros and cons of each choice, and then you should be able to make your decision. If you have sex with her and then propose there are two general outcomes:

    1) She is ecstatically happy with both the sex and the proposal and immediately says yes. (If this happens, awesome. Lock that down and grow old together).

    2) Regardless of the quality of the sex, you completely surprise her with the proposal, she starts to cry, and says no. (If the sex was really good, you can assume that she was lying to you about being a virgin so it is a good thing that you aren’t getting married. If the sex was bad AND she says no, you have really botched things. You have literally and figuratively blown your wad too soon. If you guys stay together after this and plan to have sex again, she is going to be waiting and cringing every time after sex because she thinks you will propose to her. If you do this, you are as good as dumped.)

    My final advice is to just have the sex. See how things go. Then make a decision on the proposal.

    Hope this helps.

    Hi there,

    You know...sex is like smores. The more you have, the stickier the mess. It's also like filling up on bread before a meal. It's impossible not to do. Lastly...sex is like laundry. You need to do it.

    Maybe these references aren't ideal in my attempt to articulate what I mean. How about a line from George Michael's classic tune...

    It's natural
    It's chemical (let's do it)
    It's logical
    Habitual (can we do it?)
    It's sensual
    But most of all.....
    Sex is something that we should do
    Sex is something for me and you

    ...ahem...not ME and YOU...but you know...you and your lady.

    Embrace the fact that sex is written into our DNA. That will guarantee your success. If you're confident and assertive, while simultaneously being a gentleman and sensitive, I'm certain you'll thoroughly enjoy each other's company. Perhaps bring a small CD player, a bottle of champagne, and a Sarah Brightman disc. Ever thought of a pair of sexy dice? How about a sexy dance?
    The bottom line Anonymous - even though you're new at this, you need to dive into this like you're a pro....and when I say dive in, I mean in between her legs. Just an FYI...if you manage to actually dive in there...as in an Olympic dive...then she is definitely not a virgin.

    Christmas Jeer?

    December 15th, 2010

    Christopher Pringle writes:

    First off, I would like to wish you guys Happy Holiday’s. It is that crazy holiday season and I’ve encountered quite the predicament.

    A close friend of mine is trying to organize a holiday get together. When he pitched the idea to me he explained that he wanted to get a bunch of people together for some beers, food, and holiday cheer. During the conversation, he made it sound like there would be around 20 people coming out. This sounded like it was going to be a huge party. I was looking forward to it.

    The problem is that when I got the email invite, there was only two other people invited. I’ve already booked work off for this “party”. Should I bail out on this lame-fest?

    Listen PRINGLE! I assume that, like me, you have already grouped your friends into 3 categories of importance: A being the best, B being pretty good, and C being filler. You need to get the guest list, compare it with your list, and then follow theses simple rules:

    1. If all guests are on the A list, it doesn't matter how many there are, you go.
    2. Guests from B should never outnumber A, and C should never outnumber B.
    3. If it is a mixed party of less than 10 people, you're going to want to make sure there is a ratio of 2A to 1B/C, making sure that rule 2 is not broken.
    4. For a party of more than 10 people, the ration can be 1.5A to 1B/C, but again rule 2 should never be broken.

    These are simple social rules, and I'm surprised you didn't already just consult your friendship matrix to determine whether or not you should go. There's even an app for that.

    That's a tough one, Christopher.

    It really depends on who those other two people are. Say, if it was Burt Reynolds and the Queen of England, then I'd go for sure. But if it was anyone else then I'd probably be having second thoughts like you are now.

    Wait. If it actually is Burt Reynolds and the Queen of England, can you let me know? Can you ask if you'd be allowed to bring one guest? I can make some dip or something. I actually found a recipe that only calls for one container of cream cheese and some hot peppers and it tastes EXACTLY like you're eating jalapeno poppers. Have you ever had those? They're so good.

    Dear Scrooge,

    If Bill Murray has taught me anything, it’s that stapling horns to a mouse in your miniature nativity scene does not make you “festive”. It this guy really is a close friend, maybe this is a cry for help. Maybe you should introduce him to more people. Maybe you make a snowman. Maybe you should bake a tray of cookies. Maybe you should bring a bottle of butterscotch schnapps. Maybe you should bring a stripper. Maybe you should switch to briefs. Maybe you should order the club sandwich. Maybe you should accept others imperfections. Maybe you should watch more Discovery Channel. Maybe price is the difference. Maybe it’s not all about the Benjamin’s.

    What I’m trying to say is that I think you should go to the lunch thing.

    Hey idiot,

    There's a word for these kinds of things. It's "scams".

    One of two things is going to happen here - and I'm saying this with little to no idea of how well you know this "friend" of yours.

    A) - You're going to conveniently be told to go to a Holiday Inn Express near the airport due to a location change, and will enter a room with two Scandinavian dudes in robes who'll insist on you having a few drinks. There'll be a video camera set up, and next thing you know you're being stuffed like a Christmas turkey.

    B) - It's an intervention. From personal experience, this is a guaranteed awkward situation waiting to happen. If you get there, and you allow them to get to the letters that they've written you - you're fucked.

    Either way - bail man.

    Sexual Eating

    November 27th, 2010

    Jenny Hamburger writes:

    I'm so glad you guys are answering advice again. I've had this problem for a few years now, but have had nowhere to turn since you guys stopped solving problems.

    Here it is: I can no longer go out for dinner with my boyfriend. No matter what he orders, he somehow manages to eat sexually. He says he's not doing it on purpose, but I have trouble believing it. Some examples:

    - When he gets chicken wings he asks for only flats (the ones with two bones, not the mini drumsticks) and then he eats them sideways, using his tongue to dig out the meat between the two bones. It looks sooo much like cunnilingus that people stare!

    - Last week we were at my nephew's minor hockey game and he ordered a hot dog. I don't think I need to tell you how that turned out, but rest assured we're not going to anymore of my nephew's hockey games.

    - At a work event, some snacks were served and he honed in on the pigs in a blanket. He claimed he just wanted to see what was inside, but he spent nearly 10 minutes pulling the little hot dog in and out of the breading; slowly at first, but getting faster and faster. I lost my job because of this!

    Basically I want to ask you if you think he's doing this on purpose, and if he is should I stay with him? I love him dearly and he's perfect in every other way. If he isn't doing it on purpose how do I change him?

    Help me The Setbacks!

    Listen HAMBURGER! I am having trouble answering this question, because I am the opposite of your boyfriend. I refuse to eat any food that is in any way sexual. I have never eaten banana, hot dog, pickel, cheese string (unshredded), popsicle, or bratwurst. When I eat melons, potatoes, tomatoes, apples, or oranges I always eat only 1 at a time. I have never had a roast beef sandwich.

    Bottom line, you need to get away from this guy. He sounds too crazy in sexual ways. He may even want to have sex with you. You've been warned.

    Hi Jenny, it's great to be back helping people. Thanks for your warm wishes.

    Good news - I've solved this one for you. This is a classic case of sexual frustration bubbling up to the surface. For most guys, these untapped urges manifest themselves in a few harmless ways: chewing on ice, smoking cigarettes, or soliciting prostitutes, for example. Some guys, however, are either unable to conceal their raging libido or they just choose not to.

    I'm not sure what category your boyfriend falls under, but bottom line he's basically a ticking timebomb and unless you dingle his dingleberries in the next 24 hours you'll run the risk of more frequent embarrassing outbursts like the ones you described. Only, they'll get worse... I mean, a friend of mine was single for a while and he was feeling particular lonely one night and I don't even want to tell you what he did to the watermelons at the IGA. He's still not allowed back there.

    Guys are like pressure valves that need to be constantly monitored or they'll explode. And I don't mean explode in the sexual way - they'll literally detonate like a kilogram and a half of C4. You don't want to have that blood on your hands, do you?

    Jenny, men are a simple kind, this is an easy answer. Fight sex with sex.

    Don’t interpret this as a recommendation to start deep throating pogo-dogs in front of your boyfriend because this will work against what you are looking for. What I suggest is that you start withholding sex every time he does this type of behavior. Men understand this type of basic interaction. Since your boyfriend sounds a little dense, you may have to go the extra mile.

    For example, if you are out at a seafood restaurant and your boyfriend starts gargling lobster tails, you simply need to get his attention, grab the clam you are eating, hold it in front of you, and slam it shut. He’ll get the hint.

    (PS: This technique also works with gestures such as a philly steak and cheese sandwiches slamming shut, a train running into a wall, or smashing a mushroom top.)

    Good luck.

    Wow. What a dilly of a situation you've found yourself in.

    I'm going to drop some knowledge here. The way you've characterized this situation is 10000% inaccurate. Obviously we have to divide everything you're saying here by 2. Eating food is one of the ONLY times when men aren't thinking about doing it. Matter of fact, sex is probably the last thing on our mind.

    Plenty of times - when the Setbacks get together for a little something we like to refer to as Buds 'N' Suds - we'll be having chicken wings and next thing you know, Trevor and Steve are locking mushed hands while they do one of those Spock-from-Star-Trek "Live Long And Prosper" gestures and spreading their coupled fingers. Fast forward 10 seconds and someone's checking what's underneath the hood (if you know what I mean) - just in time for the other one to slip a chicken wing out of the little area in between. Is this sexual? Not the last time I checked. It's called friendship, Jenny. I wouldn't expect you to understand this, because it sounds like you're a fucking downer.

    In my personal experience - all women think that all men think about is sex. Sometimes we just hang out and like savoring our food. That ever occur to you? Of course not. You were probably too busy having your period and looking into things with an emotional magnifying glass - but I'll tell you what Jenny - next time I'm eating a smoked meat sandwich, I can assure you that the last thing I'll be doing is treating the food like it's a set of moist beef drapes. No, no, no,...I'll be thinking about the time and effort required to smoke that savory brisket, and any remotely enthusiastic activity going on as I consume that astonishing sandwich will be because I think it tastes damned good.

    DEADFOOT friend

    November 19th, 2010

    Craig Folgers writes:

    Dear Setbacks,

    I have a friend who constantly asks me for favors, but often... actually never... is available to return a favor.

    He has no car, and often claims poverty or "things being tough". Once, he even made up the excuse that he was mugged in broad daylight and a thug made off with all of his money to get out of paying for a fucking lunch at Harvey's. Two Angus burgers is less than $12. Did you know that?

    What should I do? I enjoy being friends with him, but this is beyond irritating. I hate it actually. The other day he asked me if I could lend him $2.71 for a coffee and I got pissed off because he specifically asked for the change. Round it up to $3 dipshit.

    The worst part about this is my friend is a combat veteran and amputee. Just to clarify though - he never saw any action. He was tripped off an aircraft carrier and lost his foot in some bullshit accident while at sea. He's an engineer by trade, and I'd be surprised if he even saw a gun in his life. As you can understand, as much as I want to call him on this stuff, I look at his stump and then feel guilty. Knowing him, he'd turn this around on me and really lay it in for giving him a hard time, and I hate feeling like an asshole. He'd suggested things like "running" and "skiing" are recreational activities he's had to part with. HE NEVER DID THEM IN THE FIRST PLACE. I'VE KNOWN THIS GUY FOR 20 YEARS.


    ...but you need to also take this into consideration guys. I know he's getting a sweet pension from the military and he scored a hot girlfriend. WTF. He also works his prosthetic like a Harlem Globetrotter and often moves faster then I do.

    Tell me what I should do.

    Craig Folgers

    Listen FOLGERS! If you hate feeling like an asshole, maybe you shouldn’t be one. But seriously, you need to cut off this friendship like fate cut off his leg: cleanly and swiftly. This could lead to him having something called a ‘ghost friendship’. People who have limbs cut off often experience ‘ghost limb’ where they still reach for things even though they don’t have an arm. It’s not pleasant, but he’s still going to reach to you for things, but you need to not be there for him.

    We played with a band once who sang a song about ghost limbs. It didn’t seem to be in good taste. We were not comfortable playing with them.

    Honestly Craig, I wasn't aware that two Angus burgers is less than $12. That's not very much money at all. In fact, I could probably find that in the cushions of my couch... or, to use a more common saying, by effortlessly mugging a disabled military veteran on his way to meet his friend for lunch.

    Back to your problem, Craig - I have a sneaking suspicion this advice question might have been made up. Craig, the Setbacks take giving thoughtful advice very seriously and frankly I don't appreciate you wasting our time with this phony baloney question. Get out of the way so we can get back to helping people with their real problems.

    Good day, sir.

    This is possibly one of the most offensive questions I have ever read in my entire life. This is coming from a person that regularly reads the Dear Abby column where it is almost common place to hear the sentences “Is it wrong that my husband spends more time on the computer looking at marsupial muffs then mine?” or “I found a diesel powered pitching machine in our garage but my husband doesn’t play baseball, should I be worried?”

    You have serious issues. Suck it up and lend the dude $3.

    Man - kick this motherfucker to the curb! Then tell him he'll never be able to do what you just did to him because you have BOTH of your feet. Then do a moonwalk, and say the same thing. Lastly, subtly whisper in his ear that you LOVE buying PAIRS of shoes.

    Drastic? Maybe. Necessary? Absolutely.

    Listen, I come from the Mel Gibson school of solutions. Doing politically incorrect and outrageously insensitive things is part of what gets things done. In Mel's case, it ended his career and prevented Lethal Weapon 5 from ever happening. In your case, it's going to reduce or likely eliminate your loans to this deadbeat. It might also end your friendship - but if I'm being honest, having a friend with one foot is kind of gross, anyways.