I've read this entire blog and found some of your replies rather callous. While you may have meant it as a joke, the person who approached you had serious intentions. How would you feel if your reply had made the matter worse for him/her?
I've read Dear Abby, too, and found that her replies seem somewhat gentler and more serious and the readers would probably take her advice with less resentment.
Al, you're a great writer but you really need to brush up on your attitude sometimes.
Please note that I still enjoy reading your column but I hold a more light hearted attitude towards it now.
After reading your email, I'm a changed man. NOT! :)
I understand where you're coming from, Liz, but this is my blog.
Writers know what they're getting into if they read previous posts.
It's not my fault if they don't do their research before submission.
I'm really not a bad guy. Ask Satan!
Thanks for writing!