Dear Abby, Twerking

Dear Abby

The most shocking part of this story is that people still write in to advice columns.

The second most shocking part of the story is that, if you read all the way to the bottom of the "Dear Abby" column, it says, "Dear Abby is written by Abigail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips." WTF, so there was NEVER an Abby?

Anyway, the latest batch of Dear Abby advice included a question from a "TROUBLED MOM IN CONNECTICUT" who worries her twerking child is on drugs. The letter is so adorable in its cluelessness that it almost seems unreal:

DEAR ABBY: I'm the happily married mother of two teenage boys. The other day I overheard my older son (age 17) talking with a friend about "twerking." I have never heard of it and now I'm worried. Is twerking a drug term? Is it similar to "tripping," "getting high" or "catfishing"?

My 17-year-old is supposed to go to Princeton next year on a sports scholarship, and I'm afraid "twerking" will derail him from his charted path. Thank you for any advice you may have.

Which might be because it probably isn't real—Ivy League schools don't give out sports scholarships. Also, this is 2014 and most concerned mothers know how to use Google.

So either Dear Abby got trolled (or catfished, an odd inclusion in the letter as, in a game of one of these is not like the other, pretending to be Lil Bow Wow on Facebook is neither like "getting high" nor "tripping"). Or nobody does write to Dear Abby anymore and some intern thought this would be a funny letter.

Anyway, "Abby" responded: 

DEAR MOM: Don't panic. "Tripping" and "getting high," as you already know, refer to altered states of consciousness as the result of using drugs. "Catfishing" is something else. It's pretending to be someone you aren't, creating a false identity on social media, usually to pursue a deceptive online romance. 

The "twerking" your son was referring to is a dance move recently made famous by Miley Cyrus — in which the dancer (usually female) gyrates in a provocative, semi-squatting position that involves thrusting hip movements. 

Good information to know regardless.

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