Dear Gail: To Cruise or Not To Cruise?

Comedian Gail Forrest weighs the perils and delights of package cruises and muses on the loss of the landline

To Cruise or Not To Cruise? – Good Question

Dear Gail:
I don’t know if you’ve ever done this, but even if you haven’t, I trust your opinion. Should my husband and I go on one of those package cruises to the Caribbean? 

Advantages: they pamper you 24/7, there’s lots of food, drinks, entertainment and activities.

Disadvantages: mass food poisoning, the occasional drunken brawl and/or murder, and giant waves that can capsize the ship. 

What do you think?

Rose P

Dear Rose:
I totally understand your trepidation, but iffy on the temptation. I will not be of much help as I would rather sleep on a bed of nails than go on a cruise. All I envision when I hear the word cruise is being TRAPPED! Stuck out on an endless expanse of water with no land in sight and way to escape.

I also immediately factor in the Norovirus and how easily it’s transmitted. I can’t possibly make certain every man, woman and child washes their hands! As a result I could end up cramped over, writhing in pain for days in my teenie tiny cabin. Good times.

I do believe they ply you with food and alcohol 24/7 which means after two days, none of the new fun resort wear you brought to wear will fit. Pack caftans and elastic waistbands as backup.

However, on the upside it might be a nice romantic getaway for you and the hubby. That is if you still like him after being trapped together for endless days/nights, sick as dogs from food poisoning or Norovirus. It’s all how you define romance.

It’s possible a drunken brawl would be entertaining but stay clear of the railing regardless of your ability to tread water.

If it were me I’d be booking a flight.

Just Pick Up the Damn Phone

Dear Gail:
What do I do about people who just want to be texted and never pick up the phone?
Textless in Santa Monica

Dear Textless:
I’m with you, babe. I hate texting. Hate, I say. And even when I tell people I am not a texter they don’t listen. I want to yell “Just pick up the damn phone!” What’s wrong with hearing a human voice once in a while?

I grew up in the land of phones attached to the wall and answering machines. I had to wait until I got home to talk to someone or find out who called. Bfd, and so much calmer and less stressful than hearing the constant pinging of a text. Unless you’re in organ failure it can wait.

And the worst part is feeling obligated to drop everything and respond. I miss every other letter on the teenie tiny phone keyboard and get so frustrated I want to seek counseling.

I have no good answer except leave the phone home which no one is capable of doing ever again.

Need advice? Gail wants to hear from you. Send your letters, questions, and quandaries to: newsletter@weareageist.com


  1. Love it. I totally endorse your take re cruise ships. All that water everywhere! I don’t need to feel any more small and insignificant than I already do. Also, I saw where there was some cruise ship brawl that went on for about 12 hours. No cops, you know, so no thanks.

    Re texting. Yeah, weird, isn’t it? I guess it’s good for very brief messages like “C U at noon”, and “yes” and “no”, and that’s about it. But some people want to text, say, a whole 15 minute conversation, which by texting, takes an hour and quarter. What sense does that make?

    • Good to hear someone is on the same cruise page as I am…..I think I would jump after thirty minutes as maybe I could still swim to shore.

      As for texting; I agree the endless text and typos is crazy making

      • Decided early on not to text, after hearing a friend’s humorous speech about how texting got her in trouble with her boss. I do use Fabebook Messenger, however–this way one avoids giving out the cell phone number—which is deadly because then the phone can/does ring, with tons of spam calls. My phone is silenced until I turn it on.

  2. I went on one cruise – 6 days and I was deathly sick for 3 days. Couldn’t eat all that food they ply you with, couldn’t “enjoy” all the entertainment and facilities and NO WAY off the ship! Only upside was that I lost weight.

  3. After a cruise(first ever, 2019) I had a deposit on was cancelled due to the person we were taking bailing out last minute, I looked carefully at going on another. A hard No, for all the reasons you mentioned and another important one–noise. How are they able to keep a tiny cabin quiet when there are thousands of people around you? I don’t go on vacation to hear others’ noise at all hours, no thanks.
    I don’t text either, or give out my cell phone number. Remarkably, I can still communicate to anyone I need to touch base with. Speaking via landline or a Face Time or similar app still works and anyone who doesn’t get that isn’t worth talking to. Protecting my privacy is key.

    • I think you are right protecting ones privacy these days is critical as there are too many ways to hack into it unbeknownst to you and then surprise your credit card bill is 10k – with no purchases you made. It only takes seconds.


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Gail Forresthttp://www.gailforrest.com
Gail Forrest is a comedy writer and stand up comic. She studied at Second City in Chicago and has performed at Pretty Funny Women and Flappers in LA, as well as Second City to name a few. She has a published book Gonepausal on Amazon about women in midlife and is working on a new book which includes men and promises to be just as funny with even more insights on aging.


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