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Take My Advice

Sometimes it takes an anonymous tip to get the message across

By Jessica Lyons

I'LL GIVE you a tip," my darling husband likes to say in his tough-guy voice. "Wear your seatbelt."

Luckily, the writers at www.justatip.com are less humor-challenged than my spouse. Just A Tip tells your friends about their annoying habits so you don't have to. First you choose a problem, like "poor crotch hygiene," "large buttocks," "obvious toupee," "excessive email forwarding," and my favorite, "not funny." Next you answer questions about your friends' and family's annoying habits, and then the nice people at Just A Tip send them an anonymous email.

To prevent confusion, each complaint page includes links for more information. For example, the excessive ear hair page will shoot you over to a very informative site about ear hair and hearing. Did you know that without hair in your ears you would be deaf?

Sure there are compliments--like "environmentally conscious," "professional sounding band" and "high alcohol tolerance"--but sending an anonymous compliment is about as thrilling as watching a weekend marathon amateur chess tournament on TV.

Success of sending tips varies. A friend of mine--let's call her Mia--recently received a tip that although she may think she can sing like Liza Minnelli, her voice is the worst ever. After blasting out an accusatory email to everyone she knows, and a few others by mistake, she's still a "New York, New York" singin' karaoke regular.

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From the February 14-21, 2001 issue of Metro Santa Cruz.

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