Dear Harlan: I just moved in with one of my good friends and things have been going well, but she wakes me up early every morning because of her loud cereal eating. She clanks the bowl against the table and shakes her Special K at an abnormal level of loudness. As she eats her bowl of breakfast, the spoon is like a giant hammer with each bite. She also slams all the cabinet doors. I know this sounds ridiculous, but I would think at least she would be mindful and courteous enough not to slam the cabinet doors. What should I do? – Sleepless in Cereal
Dear Sleepless: Did you know Kellogg’s Corn Flakes were originally invented as a way to prevent young people from masturbating? There’s no mention of Special K curbing self-stimulation, but eliminating cereal from your roommate’s diet might create an even louder problem (and there’s no evidence corn flakes reduces masturbating). Your roommate’s love of Special K and her big noisy spoon are part of her. This is her routine. To deprive her of this simple pleasure in life would be… selfish. DO NOT expect her to stop eating Special K with a big spoon. But the solution is simple. Work with her love of cereal. Give her a big spoon and a plastic bowl as a surprise (the holidays are coming). Tell her that you respect her passion for cereal, but you love sleep as much as she loves cereal. Explain how the new bowl and spoon will work. This way, she will clang less and you can sleep more. Open and honest communication is the best gift. The big spoon is a bonus.