- The Washington Times - Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Advice compiled and condensed from actual sources by Kelly Jane Torrance, who composed the questions.

I’m fighting like a dog to regain my place in society - but it’s real hard. I’m finally back, playing in the NFL. It feels good to be on the field again - except when I start thinking about how the fans are going to react.

I spent 18 months in jail for dog fighting. I ain’t never had so much time to think. Well, to be honest, it wasn’t being in jail so much as talking to real animal lovers that made me see the error of my ways. Or at least why it made people so mad. I’ve really changed in that year and a half. I won’t never fight dogs again. A lot of people still hold a grudge against me, though.

Is there any way I can get the people of Philly to realize I’m a new man?

- Michael Vick

Dear Michael,

Time, which changes people, does not alter the image we have retained of them.

- Marcel Proust

I might have made a mistake. I left the most popular show on television - and didn’t even manage to get a spot on “Dancing With the Stars” to replace it. Rumor has it that I’m just waiting for the call asking me to return to “American Idol.”

I left because I didn’t think they were offering me enough money. Sure, the show resurrected a career that was totally dead. But Ryan Seacrest was getting so much more money than me, it made me feel really bad! Who cares if he always sounds so much more coherent than me?

Leaving doesn’t seem to have done me any good, though, so I’m left wondering: Did I make a mistake in killing the goose that laid me a multimillion-dollar egg?

- Paula Abdul

Dear Paula,

We tend to forget that happiness doesn’t come as a result of getting something we don’t have, but rather of recognizing and appreciating what we do have.

- Frederick Keonig

My husband and I can’t seem to make up our minds - do we want to stay together or not? We’ve filed court papers a couple times now to dissolve our marriage, but we can’t seem to do it with any finality.

Now I have finally decided that, no matter what happens, I don’t want to be with him anymore. Life’s too short and I’m too old. I got back together with him before, but I always felt I was taking the easy way out, thinking it was easier to stay with a guy surrounded by rumors of crazy hot-tub parties with young Russian hotties. Was I right?

- Robin Wright Penn

Dear Robin,

Reconciliation with our enemies is but a desire to better our condition, a weariness of war, the fear of some unlucky accident.

- Francois de La Rochefoucauld

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