Hey everybody! I’m back from vaKSKation the only way you should ever be back on the job after a week off: half-heartedly, with minimal effort and maximal foot-dragging. You won’t find any extra photos or long-winded asides from me today, but I promise you this: what follows is definitely a mailbag. You cannot deny that.

Anyway, we have several different issues this week, but a couple folks below have problems that stem from being roommates with their siblings. Dude, just… no. I think my sister’s one of the coolest people on the planet, but that doesn’t mean I want to live under the same roof with her. Siblings should only live together if they’re (a) 18 or younger and (b) in their parents’ house. The one exception: twins who go to the same college. There are literally BILLIONS of other people in the world. Go meet some of them and offer them your extra room before turning to your brother or sister.

Captain Coochie Crusher,
Sex thing first that really has nothing to do with sex. Fingers crossed that this wastes your time and you destroy me for it. I’ve been dating a girl for almost a year now. She’s pretty amazing. I love spending time with her, we never argue, we like the same things and all that other shit that happy relationshippy people brag about. Since most of my past relationships usually end in a matter of months with the girl revealing some sort of hidden drug problem or violent streak or inability to act normal or penis (just kidding), you can see how I’m pretty excited about this one. But there is one problem that I’m not quite sure how to handle.

You see, I have always been a thorough enjoyer of “me” time. Time where I can do whatever the fuck I want without having to answer to anyone. Time where I can just be by myself, away from everyone and relax uninterrupted by anything. I realize getting into a serious relationship means sacrificing such things like the amount of “me” time I get. And I’m cool with that. Relationships are about compromise. I just wasn’t aware that I would be sacrificing ALL of it. The one thing that has been bothering me is that when I’m not with this girl she seems to think that we need to constantly text each other from the time I get off work until the time I go to bed. A couple texts here and there are fine, but to carry on the entire day…every day for the past year…can be a little overbearing at times. How do I let her know that the 6th grade constant texting is a little too much for me without hurting her feelings? I really like this girl and the last thing I want to do is hurt her by voicing my opinion the wrong way. Or am I just making too big of deal out of the whole texting thing?

This email makes me feel old. All I can think is, “Fucking kids with their texting, rabble rabble.” And I like texting. It’s a nice way to be concise and share information without wasting time on the phone saying, “Yeah… yeah… uh huh… totally… Love you, too, honey. Bye-bye.” And it’s especially nice because you can respond to texts at your leisure — something you clearly have failed to do for the last year, otherwise she wouldn’t be texting you hourly.

Everything in a relationship takes two people. Yes, she appears to be clingy with her constant texting, but I’d wager you fostered that habit by promptly responding to her texts and not creating the space for yourself that you need. And now you can’t just start ignoring her texts for an hour, because she’ll probably freak out and leap to conclusions. “Oh my God he hasn’t answered yet! What did I do? He doesn’t like me any more! I should send more texts to see what’s wrong!”

Now, because you didn’t properly maintain a little bubble of individualism separate from your relationship, you’re going to have to sit her down and explain to her in the nicest way possible that she needs to text you less often. And no matter how much you stress that you love her and she makes your life better in every way, she’s probably still going to be butt-hurt by the conversation. But it’s better that she be a little butt-hurt now, with the knowledge of how to be a better girlfriend to you, than for you to just blow up at her out of the blue when you finally reach your breaking point.

Now football. I’m in a big money league ($200 entry) with keepers. Friendships have been severed because of this league but I continue to be in it because I have a problem, apparently. The first year I was runner up. Last year I missed the playoffs by one game (Fuck you very much Jonathan Stewart…3rd round pick). The rules state you can only keep one player for two years, then they get thrown back into the draft. I’m keeping Peyton Manning for the final year I’m able to, but I have a dilemma with my second keeper. I’ll have the 6th pick based on where I finished last year but I also have Peyton Hillis. So…Do I keep Manning/Hillis and risk losing my fucking mind if Hillis tanks next year or roll the dice, only keep Manning and see what’s out there on draft day? Thanks for the help.

Sincerely,
Calloused Thumbs

I’d keep Hillis. Even if his ridiculous production from last year falls off, he’s still likely to be better than Running Back X you get in the second round. Besides, if he truly sucks this year, you can at least have the small satisfaction of cutting him. If you get rid of him and he kicks ass, you’ll never forgive yourself. Minimize the potential damage to your psyche by keeping him.

**********

Captain Caveman,
Fantasy Football: My top four players are Aaron Rodgers, Greg Jennings, Mike Wallace and Jamal Charles. Yet I can only keep two of them since our commissioner set the keeper number at 2 (this is our first year doing keeper). I also lose their value in our 200 point auction draft (Sidebar: Auction drafts are much better than snake since there is more strategy and less random luck). Charles is worth 41, Rodgers 39, Jennings 26 and Wallace 7. Standard scoring w/ .25PPR

Rodgers is a shoo-in (third in scoring behind Foster and Vick). After that I’m stuck. Charles got me the 2nd most points, Wallace is the best value and the Rodgers-to-Jennings connection worked very well.

Either Charles or Wallace. My first inclination is to say Charles, because that insane YPC doesn’t lie, and he’ll probably get more red zone touches this year. However, that’s a tall order to spend 1/5 of your entire budget on two players. If you think you can fill out the rest of your roster with 120 points, keep Charles. Otherwise, I like the value you get from Mike Wallace.

Sex: On the relationship front I also have a dilemma. It boils down to this: to reconnect with a past flame, is it better to do what worked the first time to remind her of something comforting and familiar, or to do new and flashy things to show you’ve changed for the better?

Context: As a senior in college I had an amazing relationship, including last summer in my current city. It ended only because she was a year younger and didn’t want to enter a long distance relationship. In hindsight that makes sense, but at the time I was devastated. So I followed the KSK/CC model of break ups: Sulk for a month and try to forget her by improving my life: I ran a 10K, learned how to cook and went on dates with other girls.

However, a couple months ago my ex told me she’s moving to my city. Since then, we’ve started chatting again. In fact, I saw her several times during Reunion Weekend (which I’d previously booked before we started talking). I definitely could tell that our chemistry was still there. We even were close to hooking up, but she stopped me and said “Listen, I’ve been really emotional with graduating and leaving all my friends. If we want to date when I move down I think it’s best if we don’t drunkenly hook up tonight. It’ll only complicate things.” Normally this would be DING DING leading on/crazy/attention whore signs.

Eh, that could go either way. You could interpret it as her playing manipulative mind games, but my gut reaction is that she probably just wants a better chance at a fresh start with you.

However, my ex is not the type to get emotional or play those kinds of games. So I know she was being sincere. (She also was the first to bring up dating again.)

Needless to say, since that weekend, my feelings for her have resurfaced. And at the very least she has thought about dating me again. So I’m trying to think of a great way to reconnect with her when she moves. Hence the past vs. new question above. Would it better to go to our favorite restaurant from last summer (familiar, evocative of the good times) or offer to come over one night and cook her dinner at her place (new, flashy skill that’s impressive for a 23-year old guy). Similarly, would wearing a shirt that she bought for me (which I’ve kept because it’s comfortable not for sentimental reasons) perhaps subconsciously remind her of our great connection? Or would she think my wardrobe hasn’t changed since we broke up?

HOLY SHIT. Put your ovaries away and stop over-thinking this.

I’m probably over-thinking the shirt part,

Yes.

but I’m curious whether you you think evoking the glory days or showing improvement is better. I really think a good “second first date” would go a long way to rekindling the flame (or determining whether she actually was just leading me on…)
Thanks CC,
Keeper Keeper

Cook dinner at YOUR place, not hers (unless she invites you over). She’ll be moving into a new space and will want to get the fuck out of her apartment after being surrounded by boxes. And don’t think of it as showing off a new skill — think of it as being yourself. I hate to use a baseball metaphor, but this is an easy fly ball to catch — don’t squeeze the glove too hard.

**********

Dear KSK,
Currently dating a girl named Debbie, but this question refers to her relationship with her sister Pam. Debbie is very close to her sister, both in life (roomates) and in age (18 mos. apart). About two years ago, Pam starts dating a GI, and as she is prone to do, becomes very impulsive and they elope two weeks before he ships off to Afghanistan.

Oh wow. A “GI,” you say? I believe this is the first email I’ve ever received from the 1950s. ”Golly, chum! Ya think Ike will drop the A-bomb on the Reds?”

Now, in the absence of having her husband around, she starts sleeping with a new guy. A very skeevy, asshole-ish gentleman who is about 12 years her senior, and who is also very well aware that he is helping the wife of a man who is risking his life for the cause of freedom cheat. Debbie is completely exasperated by the situation. She has tried everything: yelling at Pam, giving her the cold-shoulder, sitting her down for a “sister-to-sister” chat, to make her realize that what she is doing is very very wrong, but nothing seems to be working. Just the other day, Pam went out to see the skeeve-ball and left her phone at home. When Debbie picked up the phone, and Pam’s hubby was on the line from the other side of the world looking for her, Debbie couldn’t do anything but cover for her sister, and she rightfull feels very, very disgusted with herself for doing so. Now, GI Hubby is coming home for two weeks R&R and is staying with them. Pam just started a new job and Debbie will be spending most mornings at home with Mr. Husband (Debbie is service industry), which will be incredibly uncomfortable for her. What does she do?? It’s pretty obvious that he shouldn’t be married to Pam, but is it Debbie’s job to tell him about the infidelity?? It’s really eating Debbie up…should she pay for her sister’s shit-brained behavior??

I suppose shoving Pam in front of a city bus isn’t an option, huh? Too bad.

Ordinarily, I would recommend staying out of people’s relationships: they’re hard enough to maintain — and painful enough when destroyed — without a third party tattling on someone. However, Pam’s insistence on being brazen about cuckolding her military husband is particularly distasteful, and I’d argue that it becomes your business when it starts affecting people in your life.

Some people might say that you should give Pam some kind of warning, like “If you don’t tell him, I will” or “I don’t want to hear about you seeing that other guy ever again, because it’s killing Debbie” — but that just gives Pam the upper hand and gives her the chance to feed Debbie lies about you.

If I were in your shoes, I’d talk to Debbie and see if she’d be okay with me telling the soldier about Pam’s infidelity. Just blow it the fuck up, man. In the process, you’ll probably guarantee that Pam will hate you forever, but you’ll relieve Debbie’s worry while preserving her sisterly relationship. And although Pam’s anger at you may not benefit your relationship, you’ll sleep soundly knowing that you exposed truth, took some lumps so your girlfriend didn’t have to, and acted in the best interest of a deployed serviceman. It will be a shitstorm for sure, but at least you won’t be an accomplice to Pam’s cruel idiocy.

Football – Should we shy away from drafting rookies this year due to the lockout-induced lack of team activities?? Will they have less impact as rookies that in years past had entire offseasons to prepare with their new teams??
-BwJ

Shit, I hadn’t thought about that until now. I guess we’ll have to follow training camp reports a little more closely than usual to see if your suspicions are true.

**********

Greetings,
First with football: I won a 16(!) team league last year solely due to picking up Mike Vick off waivers the week before the season started (my bench was absolute trash). This allowed me to trade Aaron Rogers to a huge Packer fan in my league for a King’s ransom early in the season. Included in that trade was Calvin Johnson. Between Vick and Johnson, who do I keep (we get one keeper and don’t have to sacrifice a pick in the round he was selected)? I’ve been debating this in my head since the season ended.

On one hand, Vick was easily the most dominant player in fantasy football last year – racking up scores in the 20s even when he had a mostly awful game (see the Vikings game). On the other hand, he’s assured to miss a few games during the season, which means I’d have to draft a backup quarterback earlier than most and won’t be able to use him as trade bait, which can kill you in a league with such little depth. Megatron was also incredibly consistent, especially for a wide receiver. If Matt Stafford stays healthy for an entire season, he could very well be the best WR in fantasy football.

I’ve found that quarterbacks make the world go ’round in the deeper fantasy leagues, because you can’t count on consistent production from such a thin roster. As of now, however, it seems like quarterback and runningback are relatively deep, especially when compared to the wide receiver group. Should I keep Vick and hope Megatron/other dominant WR falls to me in round one? Or should I keep Johnson and take my chances finding a good, consistent starter after a couple rounds?

That is an exceptionally tough question. I’d pick Megatron, but that’s because I would live in fear of a Vick injury if he were on my team, and I’d rather sleep at night instead of stressing about my fantasy team.

Now, other stuff. And it’s not really my problem, but my girlfriend’s problem (therefore, I suppose it’s my problem by default).

Such obvious words need not be said.

Girlfriend and I rent a house, and her older brother rents a room from us. I’m 23, girlfriend is 25, and her brother is 36. My girlfriend and I like to have our friends over, so there’s been a decent amount of attractive females in their young 20s at the house. Unfortunately, however, my girlfriend’s brother is 36 years old going on 16 (which brings a host of fucking problems, but I’m trying to focus on just this one for the sake of your column). He ONLY wants girls aged 18-25ish

Get in line, pal.

and generally creeps out every friend my girlfriend brings over to hang out with her.

She doesn’t know what to do. I’ve told her to just be brutally honest with him – that he’s a creep, ugly, poor, and shouldn’t want to deal with the inherent drama that would could with dating someone 10-15 years younger than him. She’s tried to do it tactfully, but he can’t take the hint (well, I suppose he can since he complains about her not wanting him to hit on her friends). This situation is just fucking retarded to me. Am I right? Does she just need to be brutally honest with him?
-Clever Pseudonym

The problem isn’t her unwillingness to be brutally honest with him. The problem is that you, 23, and your girlfriend, 25, rent a room to her brother, 36. Would the two of you rent a room to some other 36-year-old creepy dude who hit on her friends? Fuck and no. I mean, I understand that family ties are important, but that doesn’t mean he has to be your charity case. Let him suckle off his parents’ teat, not your girlfriend’s.

And yeah, that metaphor is SUPPOSED to make you ill at the thought of him living under your roof. Get a new roommate.