DEAR ABBY: President John F. Kennedy proclaimed the ringing of the bells nationwide on Independence Day, July 4, 1963, with the words, "Let's ring freedom bells!" I was a White House special projects aide at the time, and I recall vividly how exciting it was when bells rang throughout the nation.
I'm writing now to ask your help in getting the American people to ring bells again on this Fourth of July, and each Fourth every year from now on.
As a grateful American, I hope to resurrect this proud tradition. Let us tune in with each other and our history by ringing bells at 2 p.m. this July 4 in honor of the 237th anniversary of our independence. Encourage churches and civic buildings with bells to ring them. It doesn't cost any money to do it.
The first groups to support this national effort include baseball teams, the National Cartoonists Society, and the Iron Workers, Firefighters and Sheet Metal Workers unions along with other AFL-CIO affiliates.
As we celebrate our freedom, let us also honor the lives of those who sacrificed theirs for our precious liberty. Your millions of readers can help "let freedom ring." -- CARMELLA LaSPADA, FOUNDER, NO GREATER LOVE
DEAR CARMELLA: I'm pleased to join you in this national effort. Readers, engraved on the Liberty Bell are the words, "Proclaim LIBERTY throughout all the Land unto all the inhabitants thereof." So let's do it. Shake any bell you happen to have. Our freedom is something to celebrate!
DEAR ABBY: I have been dating a married man for more than a year. He's my boss. "Gerry" has two kids with his wife and two more outside the marriage.
I have never been the type to date someone else's man, nor do I approve of it. I know that what I'm doing is wrong, but at times it just feels so right. We do everything together and enjoy each other's company.
Is it possible for him to be in love with us both? Why do men cheat? -- THE OTHER WOMAN IN ALABAMA
DEAR OTHER WOMAN: What you're doing with your boss may "feel" right, but as you clearly stated, it is wrong. It isn't fair to his wife, or to you or his children. While the two of you are doing "everything" together, he is cheating all four of his children of time that should be spent being a parent to them.
As to whether this man is in love with you and his wife, frankly I doubt it. He appears to be more in love with himself. Men cheat for a variety of reasons, and more often than not, it's more about the cheater than the spouse. Consider that fact carefully before wasting any more precious years with him, because you will never get them back.
DEAR ABBY: My husband needed a car to replace the old one, so he insisted on a manual transmission, which I don't know how to drive. Do you think that's fair?
He said, "Oh, you can learn." I am 58 and nervous, and I have heard it said that many a clutch got burned out by "learning." I don't want to do that. What do you say? -- SHIRLEY IN NEW JERSEY
DEAR SHIRLEY: While I understand your concern about a stick shift, your husband has told you you can learn to use one. I recommend that you learn by driving his car.
While many a gear may have been stripped by a novice driver, some have not. Think of it this way: You may be a natural. And if you're not -- well, he asked for it.
Dear Abby is written by Abigail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips. Write Dear Abby at www.DearAbby.com or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.
Abby shares more than 100 of her favorite recipes in two booklets: "Abby's Favorite Recipes" and "More Favorite Recipes by Dear Abby." Send your name and mailing address, plus check or money order for $14 (U.S. funds) to: Dear Abby, Cookbooklet Set, P.O. Box 447, Mount Morris, IL 61054-0447. (Shipping and handling are included in the price.)