In the new issues of AnOther, designer extraordinaire Tom Ford reveals his five rules for gentlemanly behavior.
Well, having grown up in South Brooklyn, I’m going to have to take issue with some of these commandments. Below are Tom’s lessons, followed by my ungentlemanly responses.
“1) You should put on the best version of yourself when you go out in the world.“
OK, no argument there. I’ll save the lesser versions of myself for the apartment.
“2) A gentleman today has to work. People who do not work are so boring and are usually bored.“
Um, Tom, are you not aware that there’s a huge recession going on, with massive unemployment? Do you not realize that a lot of people who aren’t working aren’t boring, they happen to be tragic victims of the economy?
“3) Manners are very important, and actually knowing when things are appropriate. I always open doors for women. I carry their coat, I make sure that they’re walking on the inside of the street. Stand up when people arrive at and leave the dinner table.“
I agree about manners, I swear, but giving women special treatment harks back to the 1950s, when women weren’t considered equals in the workforce but got extra pampering and delicate handling. Today, I’d just open doors for everyone!
“4) Don’t be pretentious or racist or sexist or judge people by their background.“
Agreed. Though I might judge Galliano.
“5) Flip-flops and shorts in the city are never appropriate. Shorts should only be worn on the tennis court or on the beach.“
Well, I wear flip-flops out of medical necessity, but that’s a rare case (and I always have socks on under them, so as not to scare strangers.) Basically, I agree with Tom. Never show calves or toes in public!
So it turns out we can be friends after all.