Showing posts from September, 2014

How to Identify a Gentleman

'He looks the sort of man who'd take his weight on his elbows!' said my grandmother upon meeting my father for the first time. It was the 1960s and my grandmother was prescient. That bastion of English values, Country Life , has redrafted the definition of a true gentleman to bring the species into the 21st Century. The new rule book is more concerned with correct prejudices against fuchsia trousers than whether men vacate their seat for a female. Millennial Man, according to the magazine I find in the hospital waiting room, abhors cats, gladioli and Twitter and uses Facebook only to keep in touch with his 'many godchildren'. He suffers soporific theatre shows until the curtain falls and, crucially, only makes love on his elbows. My grandmother, evidently, could sniff out gentlemanliness at first sight. I feel slightly betrayed. The Vicar, I'd thought, was a gentleman, but he owns two cats. I haven't tested his opinions on gladioli and he seldom wears t