With that in mind, let’s establish that yes, I believe in gentlemen. They’re rare, and a precious commodity. They provide some sort of breather in a world full of self-absorbed, selfish people, and they make life bearable. They do so much:
They hold the door for you…they help little old ladies cross streets…they are courteous…kind…they are honest, but diplomatic…
But…let’s go through the list of things a gentleman does not do:
A gentleman never kisses and tells…a gentleman does not cheat…and a gentleman NEVER tells a girl she should go to the gym.
Picture a beautiful young lady, fresh faced and engaging, absolutely someone to take home to mama. And in no way overweight. In fact, she works out for her health and could take out the skinny minnies around her. She is normal, yet extraordinary; at ease in her skin.
Now imagine her being swept off her feet. A gentleman pays the appropriate attention, captures her and others around her with wit, charm, and a remarkable brilliance. It is easy to see how he obtained his success in life. It is easy to fall for the charm, and easy to accept an invitation to enjoy a few hours more in each other’s company. Along with friends of course; because he would never proposition a respectable young lady.
Somehow through the night, it filters down through friends that something is wrong. Some quick deciphering reveals that he finally admitted, after several more drinks, that he felt she needed to “go to the gym” or “lose a couple pounds”. Naturally that ended the night.
Until someone who had been masquerading as a gentleman rocks her psyche, she’d been happily enjoying herself according to her rules. For someone who is comfortable in her skin, and does not question her body - having someone so rudely bring a sense of imbalance to her, for even just one moment, is enough to cause anger and resentment.
There is anger at the person’s audacity: in one fell swoop, he erased any gentlemanly charm he’d spewed. There is disappointment that he was merely putting on a show, trying to get into the fold. (Obviously no-one ever taught him the meaning of diplomacy). His actions insulted not only the girl in question, but everyone else present who was taken in by the initial charm and wit. It’s like when a man cheats on his beautiful, dutiful wife with a cracked out version of a two-dollar stripper. It’s insulting, cheap and tawdry. It is unexpected; such a sudden move that even the innocent question whether they were at fault.
How do you react to something like that? I would have popped him one – a “two-can-play-at-that-game” kind of retaliation. Friends wanted to take him out, wanted to beat him up, wanted to essentially show him how wrong he was to be so disrespectful. But what we want, and what is allowed, two different things. Ultimately, it was up to the person in question.
The extraordinary young lady should be credited for her reaction – she simply ended the night – sent him packing and finished on a high note with friends. She may have been hurt and insulted, but she certainly didn’t dwell. It helped that she has an incredible network of friends and supporters – and gentlemanly friends who more than made up for one boorish incident. Hooray for the gentleman: a breed that seems rarer and rarer every day – and word of advice to those putting on a show. That shiny veneer cracks, and not everyone forgives as easily.
Click for the Current Column...
Search Messages CIG Info