Image: Freepik


It’s with pride that we introduce our new Agony Aunt, Tziporah Malkah. Outspoken, and with a big heart, she’s been there and done that: modelled, starred in movies and TV shows, dated a super-rich guy, lived in poverty, lost weight, gained weight, worked in aged care,and become an advocate for homeless woman.

She’s opinionated, articulate, and she’s lived an incredible life of highs and lows. Now she’s ready to share her wisdom and knowledge with Starfish readers:



Dear Agony,

I’m in love with a difficult, stubborn man. We fight often but always make up quickly. He hasn’t spoken to me for a few days now, which is pretty awkward, as we work on the same office floor together! What can I do? 


Dear Nervous,

Oh yes, I remember this cycle: fight, make love, fight, make love, fight, root ferociously on the kitchen table. Your letter really takes me back to that time of endless youth and folly. I was gorgeous; and in love with a billionaire. We’d fight, and have makeup sex, then spend a few weeks of blissful loved-upness before the whole cycle would begin again.. until one day, it didn’t. I was a mess, but he was most definitely in the wrong, for whatever it was, and he wasn’t going to get away with tossing me aside. Playing on his male, territorial nature, I composed myself and phoned him at work. “Oh darling!” (Note: in these circumstances always gush hard and fast so he can’t talk at all.) “Thank you for the flowers!” I enthused, staring at my empty vase. “What flowers?” he replied. I made myself pause before replying, “Oh.. this is awkward..” But my little porky worked; I got him back.

So, Nervous, I say: Organise a mate to send you some roses at work. Look at him excitedly when they arrive. Read the card. Look confused. Smile shyly to yourself then turn away as you study the card. Jealousy will overcome him and he’ll be clamouring for your attention. He’ll be yours once again. Such silly games really do work, I find!

Dear Agony Aunt,

My friend and I were recently invited to a pyjama party, hosted by a glamorous pal. We both wore groovy flannel striped PJs with slippers, but when we arrived, our friend answered the door wearing a very different style of nightwear. She was scantily clad in see-through lingerie. “Come in,” she beamed, beckoning us into the room. She then planted herself between us on the couch in a  seductive pose, placing her hand on both of our thighs. My chum – let’s call him Fred – and I were highly embarrassed.  There were no other guests. It seemed clear she wanted to get very intimate with both of us. Is this normal, Agony Aunt?  When she went into the kitchen “to get refreshments,” we bolted out the door. Did we do the right thing?

What IS the correct etiquette at a pyjama party?


Dearest PJ,

I recall being in a similar spot when I was onset for a Miramax movie, many years ago. Due to our isolated shooting locale, the cast all had to stay in dodgy motels, in close quarters, over a few days. One night, the male star of the movie and I were invited to our supermodel co-star’s room for an evening of drinks and telly. “Just wear your PJs,” she said. The man and I rugged up in our daggy striped flannel numbers. We knocked on the door – and wow, what a vision beheld us! There was this six foot beauty, resplendent in long crimson silk nightie. Her room was chokkers with scented candles. My male companion- let’s call him Hugh- and I stood in awe at this amazing sight, suddenly self-conscious in our comfy old jim-jams.

Beckoned into the room by our Amazonian amiga, Hugh and I shuffled in, trying to appear at ease as we plonked our small bag of crisps beside her sumptuous cheese platter and tentatively perched on the couch. As the supermodel then spread herself out upon the bed, nonchalantly tipping over the photo of her then-boyfriend, we gleaned that something was definitely afoot! Watching this woman writhe around on the bed as if she were in a Penthouse shoot was truly memorable. Shaking her long mane of incredible hair, circling her fingers, kicking her iconic legs, displaying her sensational body to maximum effect.

Aged 19 at the time, I felt quite confronted, (despite having believed, until that awkward moment, that I was soooo sophisticated) … and within all of these swirling feelings, were those of attraction and arousal. I badly wanted to jump onto that bed.

Alas, I took the coward’s way out and looked to Hugh for guidance. He mumbled something about having an urgent call to make, and made a beeline for the door. So I followed, dashing out seconds after Hugh. Turning to wave, I caught the supermodel mouthing: ‘Call me!’

Hugh and I laughed ourselves silly on the cement stairs leading to our rooms. But PJ: and herein lies the moral of the story: I’ve not had that opportunity since and I regret it (my cowardice at fleeing). So, I say, go for it doll!


Dear Agony Aunt,

My life fell apart about ten years ago and I lost myself in food. I’ve gained 50 kilos and even though my boyfriend says he loves me just as I am, he stil makes jokes about my size sometimes and my feelings get so hurt I find myself tucking into a pizza or two – and that’s just for morning tea! Help!

Curve Queen

Dear Curve Queen,

Yes, I know, the truth hurts, doesn’t it! Why just the other day, my lover commented how I looked “like a Norman Lindsay model.” I tossed my head and purred. “Of course, I’m like the model in Langour.” He shook his head. “I was thinking more like the Magic Pudding!” Ha. Ha ha. I decided not to take offence/ use it as an excuse to eat a platter of Brie, but to use his harsh words as motivation instead. I’ll show him! Curve Queen, perhaps it really is time to do something about the excess weight. Take up smoking, eat a tapeworm, whatever works!

Hot Etiquette Tip

After hosting a dinner party, if you’re ready to go to sleep and the guests won’t leave, try standing in the doorway, brushing your teeth while chatting, with a mouthful of frothy toothpaste. Ensure some of the white muck flies out of your gums and lands on your dress. It always works for me.



Tziporah becomes our Agony Aunt



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