Pauline "Dear Abby" Phillips


I always enjoyed her pithy responses.

She will be missed.
We were a Tribune family growing up, so I read Abby as a kid, not Ann. She was a mensch, and I highly regard her for her pithiness.
The Detroit News ran Abby, the Free Press had Ann Landers, so I grew up with Abby. Her column was the first place I ever read anything positive or kind about gay people and for that I will be eternally grateful to her and honor her memory.
We got the P-I, but a neighbor always gave us the Times at the end of the day (in return for a plate of whatever Mom made for dinner), so I read both Ann and Abby.

Their advice seemed pretty similar -- common sense, basically. Abby seemed like a "lady;" Ann seemed more like a "gal."
I don't recall more than 2 Chicago papers when I was growing up but I do remember hauling my arse to deliver morning and afternoon papers....
The current Dear Abby routinely offers terrible and dated advice that makes me cringe. Ann Landers daughter gives much better advice. I'm sorry for their loss.
(It's hard to imagine my straight snowboardin' son taking over "Savage Love" someday, but... anything is possible, I guess.) It could happen, Dan ;)

Like Dan, I grew up reading newspapers, especially Dear Abby, Dear Ann and good comic strips. Oh the olden days.

RIP Pauline

(I love that name, it's my maternal grandmother's name. Unfortunately she died when I was 9 months old.)
Geeze they talk about the days of having two city newspapers as if it were the golden age of democracy and public discourse. But the only reason to prefer one or the other was Ann or Abby? I think I know why print died.

Sign me, Buried In Akron.
@8: Reading comprehension fail. He says the newspaper the family received determined their Abby vs. Ann preference, not the other way around.

Maybe print is dying because so many people can't read.
So Dan, do your doubts about the likelihood of your son taking up your mantle surround his straightness, or his snowboarding-ness?

Because yeah, as a skier myself, I could never imagine passing the family business on to a boarder. Shudder.
Wait...then who the hell is Abigail van Buren?
Weirdly, the time obit somewhat mangled the jackass "Nob Hill Resident" question. You can see the original one here. Also note that Dear Abby wrote that response in 1979, which makes her officially a badass.
I read Ann the elder as a kid and now read Abby the daughter, so I don't have a side-by-side comparison. I was happy to see my son at age 11 start to take an interest in the letters and her answers.

@6: while the current Abby's advice is sometimes dated, when I read it in my small, rural town and think how it is nationally syndicated, I greatly appreciate how much insidious, progressive influence mother and daughter have had over the decades. Troglodytes don't listen to Rachel and Keith. But they read Ann and Abby with their bacon and eggs each morning.
Abby was telling people to accept and love their lesbian daughters as far back as 1970. Badass indeed.
This is a great read, Dan, thanks for your own input.

I just have one question for you: Did Mah-Jongg drive you to become an advice columnist as well?
Good riddance.
Also, she was instrumental in getting me, and probably hundreds of thousands of other young men, over our guilt about masturbating.
Dan, it behooves you to go to the estate auction. Of course, since you already have a desk and a Selectric, your prize will have to be something else.

If it's up for auction, I suggest you get Abby's hairstyle. Big hair would be a great tribute - and it would look smashing on you.
@17: you couldn't troll a preschool class if you were wearing a pedobear costume. Are you ever going to not suck at this?
You couldn't troll an Andrea Dworkin convention if you were Sasha Grey.
of course.
the gays have been fucking their adopted kids since forever.
The world hasn't changed enough yet. Wait another few millenia.
I preferred Ann too but I read both when I could. I agree that both of them contributed to common sense re: how people are treated and I'm sorry for their family's loss of Pauline. Since I've graduated to Internet advice columnists I don't read Jeanne's column so I can't really say how she compares to the old Abby.
Oh my God, why so many uses of "Lander's"?? Is that a "Savage Love Thing" that I missed out on at some point?
Chicago had four dailies when I was a kid

More than that: The Chicago Defender, for black people; the Abendpost, for Germans; the Daily Zgoda, for Polish people; and El Vocero de Puerto Ricain, for Puerto Ricans. Bringing the total up to eight.

I have probably misspelled some of the paper names.
Can't believe nobody's posted this song yet:…
That is, this one.
In 1986, Abby offered me hope as my marriage, church and family crumbled when I could no longer pretend I was a straight man out here in Bumfuck. I'll never forget her caring reply, although I can hardly believe that she herself wrote the response. She must have (still?) received 1000's of letters a week.
She was way ahead of her time regarding teh ghay, and should never be forgotten by LGBT folks. BTW- the death of a relative with Alzheimer's is a blessed relief for their loved ones- I've put 3 out of 4 grandparents in the ground with that hideous disease.
RIP gracious lady.
@ 29 beautiful post
I also preferred Ann to Abby, but the one currently doing the writing is atrocious. I'm sorry for her loss but the most kind thing she could do for her mother and aunt's legacy would be to retire. She has none of the wit or common sense, and it's funny to see the quality of the letters she receives has dropped dramatically from what Ann and Abby used to get. Like does indeed attract like...
I believe I read both advice columnists, based on which paper Mike Royko wrote for. My parents made the decisions about such things as newspaper subscriptions, and they worshipped at the altar of Royko.