Charlie Crimpie – Post-holiday stress

This month’s letter comes from Charlie Crimpie of New Idaho, South Africa. Charlie writes:

Dear Derwood,

Upon returning home from a brief trip overseas, I was greeted by a most unusual reception. Get this; all of my furniture had been replaced and all of my clothes and belongings removed from my house!
Initially I just thought my wife had been busy redecorating. You know girls. But on closer inspection even the house itself looks different. It now has a second storey, for example, and I do not remember having to use a crowbar to open the front door.
Thin on answers, my family have also been strangely standoffish since my return. My children, who must have been born while I was away, barely speak to me and my wife has been particularly distant both emotionally and physically. She also appears to be younger and of a different race.
Anyway, I have managed to calm them down using some mild sedatives and beatings but now do not know what to do. It really is very strange. Any advice? Perhaps more beatings? I will assume yes.

Sincerely,
Charlie Crimpie.

Dear Charlie,

Yes, your family sure do sound like jerks. Without wanting to sound rude though, is there a chance you returned to a different house whence you came? Perhaps even to a different city or country?
I know it sounds silly but this kind of nation-based mistake is not uncommon. Why, a friend of mine once accidentally purchased a plane ticket to Turkey instead of a sandwich containing it! Boy was his face red! And he was really late to school that day. That’s the last time he buys lunch at ‘Plane Tickets And Sandwiches’! Seriously though, you may be committing several crimes.
I would suggest opening a dialogue with your family and talking things through. Also, slightly less beatings may be in order. Or perhaps continue the beatings but do not increase the frequency of them; young children especially thrive on routine.
If they remain ill at ease in your presence, try to see this as an opportunity! One must always see the positives in a situation, like the potential to upgrade to a new and better family! Or the fact I used the word “whence” in a sentence earlier, which is also quite impressive even if not used entirely correctly. Personally I am not really sure and have now forgotten what I was talking about. Best of luck with whatever your problem is.

Your pal,
Derwood.