Dear Annie: I have a problem with one of my best friends, and I hope you can help. "Monique" and I recently split the cost of a hotel room so we could enjoy a weekend of shopping and relaxation. We experienced a few problems with the room, nothing major, but Monique complained to the manager and got a coupon for a free night on her next visit. I was excited until she told me she intended to use it with her husband because she's always wanted to go there with him.
I didn't say anything to Monique, but why does this refund belong only to her? We've talked about returning to the place in a few months, and I think the coupon should be used for the two of us. I will find it really difficult to come back here with Monique if I can't get past this.
Would you please explain why she feels this is hers when I paid for half of the room? I wouldn't care quite as much except that we always use my car and Monique only pays for gas now and then. — Not Trying To Be Selfish
Dear Not Trying: Monique may feel that the refund belongs to her because she was the one who complained. But both of you were inconvenienced by this room, and the refund should be shared. Tell Monique you believe it would be fair to use the refund for your next shopping excursion together. If she refuses, you are under no obligation to return there with her. She will know why.
Dear Annie: I am a woman, 5-foot-10 and 240 pounds. I wear a size 12E men's shoe. Why do retail stores discriminate against tall women? They have petites, plus-sizes and juniors, while I am lucky to find a pair of pants anywhere, let alone something stylish. I'm stuck between ugly and uglier. Retailers assume all overweight women are short and round. I'm a size 14, but clothing in that size is never long enough.
All I want is a plain T-shirt or a nice pair of jeans that I can try on in a store. I have to order everything online and pay for shipping. When it arrives, I discover it doesn't fit, and I have to return it and wait a week to get my money back.
I'm sick of people telling me to buy men's clothing. It's degrading and depressing. Shoes are even worse. I had to make my own wedding shoes. I couldn't even find them on sites for drag queens.
Please let retailers and designers know that women come in all shapes and sizes, and once in a while, they should use a tall woman as a model. — Fed Up
Dear Fed Up: Here's the problem with catering to every shape and size: Retailers need to make money. They stock what sells. They can sell a great many things for those of average height and average size, and they have discovered a big market for plus-size women. But apparently, there isn't enough demand for clothes in your size. That is why ordering things online has become such big business, and it's a blessing for those who don't fit into standard sizes and cannot afford to have their clothing or shoes custom made. Please don't give up looking. One of these days you will find an online store where the sizing works for you, and you won't need to return everything.
Annie's Mailbox is written by Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar, longtime editors of This Classic Annie's Mailbox column was originally published in 2015. To find out more about Classic Annie's Mailbox and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit Creators Syndicate at www.creators.com.