Mary Killen Mary Killen

Your problems solved | 3 March 2016

Plus: is it OK to advertise for a Jewish boyfriend; and how to leave a book launch

Q. Re. your letter from F.C. about the boyfriend leaving lids off (20 February), I have a similar problem. My husband has developed the habit of leaving all doors, drawers and cupboards open. I don’t want to nag, because he gets ratty when I do. I don’t think I can scatter insects in all the drawers and cupboards. We are 75 and 79. Any suggestions other than an old people’s home?
— G.F., Woking, Surrey

A. Why not use an aversion-therapy expedient? Explain to your dear husband that you don’t want to be a nag, so you are just going to accept that he leaves things open. Unfortunately, it means you will have to place mousetraps within the drawers and cupboards whose borders are now porous to rodent ingress. After a couple of nasty surprises you will see an end to the nuisance.

Q. I am thinking of advertising for a Jewish boyfriend but wonder if I would be contravening the law in being so specific? I have found most Jewish men cosy and fun and without the hang-ups of many Englishmen, who don’t always enjoy women’s company. My dad’s mother was from a Jewish family.
— E.S., London W11

A. Discrimination laws only come into play in certain situations, employment being the main one. In employment positive action is allowed (i.e. hiring someone from a minority group over someone with the same qualifications from a non-minority group). But positive discrimination is never allowed. A dating agency may object to finding only Jewish men if they are worried a legal complaint could be brought by a consumer of their services for discrimination.

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