After being confused, appalled and annoyed by the various items on this list I determined to write my own guide to being a gentleman. After all, as a romance reader I am well versed in what it takes to turn the average guy from a typical dude into a dreamboat.
- A gentleman never denigrates an entire people and the place where they live. A true gentleman knows that every people and place have something to offer the world and critiquing Puerto Rico on a public list is in poor taste and ungentlemanly behavior. Lizzie Bennet would be appalled!
- A gentleman does not kiss and tell. Can unsnap a bra with one hand? Wow your date with that skill, not the internet.
- A gentleman is as at ease in jeans and a t–shirt as he is in a tweed suit. Gentlemanly behavior is not limited to a well-dressed moment. A gentleman wears his swimsuit and sandals with the same confidence he would exhibit when wearing an Armani.
- A gentleman is friendly with those who choose to wear lavender socks and realizes that those that do can also be gentlemen. Perhaps I am wrong – I sincerely hope I am – but this seemed like a slam against Nathan Lane’s character in The Bird Cage (who wore pinkish purple socks) and also against gay men in general. For shame!
- A gentleman turns his mobile off during a date (unless he has a sick mother). A gentleman knows that a vibrating pocket is as annoying as a shrill ring. Unless he is a cardiovascular surgeon or in some other way needed for a possible emergency he turns the phone off while at a social event. And he never ever says, “Hang on a minute,” while he checks his phone instead of being present in the moment.
- A gentleman carries groceries or other heavy bags for those in need. A gentleman never saves his good manners for those whom he wishes to impress. He always offers help to those he sees in need.
- A gentleman doesn’t need to be reminded to end a relationship face to face. A gentleman gives all the people in his life the benefit of face to face conversations and confrontations when discussing a difficult issue.
- A gentleman sincerely enjoys pets and children. Knowing that these are groups who can spot a phony a mile away, a gentleman knows how to unwind enough to be the kind of companion a dog or a child can genuinely be happy to see. He never employs tricks when with either group as he knows this is the opening line to a story which ends with his humiliation.
- A gentleman never judges another’s dietary habits. Whether a friend is embracing a low-carb lifestyle or has chosen to go vegan a gentleman is supportive of their choice.
- A gentleman knows that gentlemanly behavior is not a skill set but a question of proper behaviors. A true gentleman might not be able to ride a horse or sail a boat and he may never encounter a gamekeeper. He will however walk whatever path he is on with generosity, goodwill toward all, a kind nature, decent table manners and the ability to laugh at himself.
In conclusion I’ll leave with you what one of our staff members said, ” a gentleman is not going to be such a class-conscious, denigrating, elitist knobhead that he’d feel the need to promulgate that narrow kind of value in a stupid tweedy magazine, where, let’s face it, he’s preaching to the choir until it gets picked up by media outlets. ”
So what do you think – what constitutes a gentleman?
Impenitent social media enthusiast. Relational trend spotter. Enjoys both carpe diem and the fish of the day.
My husband left again for the last time on Jan 7, 2015. We have been married for 28 years. He left for another woman, the third since 1996 that I know of, but it’s very painful. We have two children 27 and 25 yrs old and a grandson who is 7. Our life was never stable because of his affairs. I just wanted to believe that he would never do it again. He did and every time he left it was without warning. I never want to feel that feeling of wondering when or if he’ll leave when I walk out the door to go to work. But still i was ready for a better life with him despite all this, until i cried out and a friend directed me to a man called Dr Amigo the online spell caster, with full expectation i write him on his email and explain everything to him, within a period of 7days he performed a greater work, my husband is back to the real man i got married to 28years ago. for any kind of relationship help reach out to him now on the internet. Type Dr Amigo the online love spell caster on Google to see people talked about his good works and sincerity.
A gentleman cares about the welfare of others and does not support cruelty to animals. There is nothing more attractive than a man who is nurturing and kind and, for me, who is a vegan. :)
I don’t know that it’s humanly possible to NEVER offend someone unintentionally. One would need to never say anything ever to anyone. Which would also apply to the ladies.
However, a gentlemen DOES apologize for any unintentional offense. (One presumes that a deliberate offense would warrant no apology).
That Puerto Rico one was bizarre, offensive, and makes no sense to me – but then I’m from Australia, and it’s not a place we hear about very often.
Some of the things on a list sort of make sense to me (most of it reads like regular manners, which I wish everyone still had!), but when you reword them, I see the issues.
But then this is Country Life, which sets itself up for snobbery from the start. Actually, I wish historical romance would recognise this more; having working with some posh family-crest-ring-wearing tossers, I guarantee you that the titled Englishman is not the egalitarian hero HR authors make him out to be.
I literally had one offer me a job as his cleaner, with benefits.
Hence my frustration with the current duke fad.
“”having working with some posh family-crest-ring-wearing tossers””
In England, not here!
You are so right on with your post and list – we need men to step up and behave like decent human beings and seriously “”sexual tricks”” do not a gentleman make. I’m so tired of the “”oversexed”” male issues – people really need to get beyond that topic
That bra one is one you hear guys say all the time. They seem to think it’s THE coolest thing to impress a woman with!
I’m not sure that the word “”gentleman”” is one that I really like to use. It resonates with class bias because it was used in previous centuries to differentiate “”gently bred”” men from the working classes. In modern parlance we primarily use it to distinguish someone with etiquette from someone without, and the same with the word “”lady,”” another term that I shy away from using.
So basically, a gentleman is a decent human being, not a douchebag. That’s a difficult requirement ;P
Spot on Maggie!
Love that rule, Lillian.
“”A gentleman never offends unintentionally.””
The whole point of good manners is to make others feel comfortable, not to show off.
Lists are fun, but honestly to be a good person or a “”gentleman”” all you have to do is treat other people the way you would want to be treated.
Totally agree, Leigh. The golden rule is still the gold standard.