By Dan Haag
I’ve always felt that one of my greatest strengths is offering unsolicited advice. Just ask any parent who has sat their crying child next to me in a restaurant or on an airplane.
One of the side benefits of writing a wildly popular column is that, from time-to-time, I receive emails from readers seeking answers from me on all manner of things. Some of them are deeply personal and I am touched that the sender took the time to share them with me. Others are, frankly, frightening and make me want to relocate to a small island.
At first, I thought it was odd that people would think of me for life pointers. But the more I thought about it, it makes perfect sense. After all, if you can’t seek advice from a man who routinely eats Captain Crunch for dinner, then who can you ask?
As we are now on the threshold of a New Year, this feels like the appropriate time to answer some of these burning questions and provide the world with an advice service they never even knew they wanted.
Q: Are you really married? You sound kind of difficult to put up with. – Andrea S.
A: The answer to both is yes.
Q: What is your favorite food? – Dale M.
A: Anything served with a beer. Or just a beer.
Q: How do you deal with the rain and wind we get here during the winter? – Kyle D.
A: I Google the phrase “Minnesota winter” and then laugh until it hurts.
Q: What’s the best thing to happen to you this last year? – Jim K.
A: The obvious answer is that I’m still in good health. The practical answer is that, even after dozens of loads of laundry in 2019, all of my socks still match.
Q: What stresses you out the most? – Janet P.
A: I work in the tourism industry. Fill in the blanks.
Q: What are your goals for the next year? – Patti J.
A: Just one big one. To finally remember the names of the people I run into who are walking their dogs, and not just the dog’s name.
Q: What are your hobbies? – Barb L.
A: Selecting the biggest book I can possibly find, settling into bed for a good, long read, falling asleep after approximately three or four sentences, and having the book crash into my forehead.
Q: Can you take a break from your little column and carry up the groceries? – Janell H.
A: Wait. How did you get this email address?
Q: Any political predictions for 2020? – Doug W.
A: That at some point, the endless stream of vitriolic campaign commercials will cause my television to violently hurl itself out of the nearest window.
Q: If you ever ran for office, what would your campaign slogan be? – Jason N.
A: “Vote Haag: All of his socks match.”
There you have it. All the pearls of wisdom I currently have to offer. Keep those questions coming. Chances, some of them will make it through my spam filter and get read.
In the meantime, as the clock clicks slowly towards 2020, I will raise my cold beer in a toast to all of you and send you a sincere wish for all the peace, happiness, love, and matching pairs of socks that your heart desires.