HELOISE Send a money- or time-saving hint to Heloise, P.O. Box 795001, San Antonio, Texas 78279-5000; fax to (210) 435-6473; or email





DEAR HELOISE: I had an important document that I needed to keep handy, so I put it on top of a pile of papers in my long desktop drawer. Minutes later, I went to retrieve it, but it was missing. Simply gone. It took me a bit to figure out that it must have slipped over the back of the drawer and, of course, landed on the floor. But it was not there either! This desk drawer, unlike many, had a panel under it where things could get lost forever. Unfortunately, the whole drawer had to be removed to get underneath it. Now that I’m aware of that panel, I’m on a quest to check under similar drawers in the house. Who knows what treasures are going to be found. — A Reader From Connecticut DEAR HELOISE: I just read comments from a retired teacher in your column. I am going on 83 years old, and I am outraged that our local schools in Miamisburg, Ohio, did not teach my grandchildren how to read and write cursive. Their ages are now 24, 18 and almost 17. If I write them a note or anything else without printing it, they struggle to read it, even if I wrote very carefully. I have so much family history that I am putting together, including very old letters and even some information on the back of ancestors’ pictures. They will never be able to read them because of the stupidity of some socalled educators. I believe that local schools are starting to bring back the teaching of cursive finally, but the damage has already been done to my grandchildren. Fortunately, many other schools across the nation did not subscribe to such foolishness and never stopped teaching cursive writing, nor phonics for reading. — Mary Carter, Miamisburg, Ohio DEAR HELOISE: I have a pair of dressy flats in a sort of silvery black color. I noticed that they had become scuffed and looked worn, with some of the color getting muted. It occurred to me to try putting some petroleum jelly on them. I was astounded at the difference! They were almost as good as new — no black polish needed! — Karen Greding, Thousand Oaks, Calif.