Friday, June 15, 2018

A Lady at the Table: Handling the Drinking Glass

  • A lady does not take a drink with food in her mouth.
  • A lady lightly blots her lips with her napkin before she takes a drink to keep her glass clean from smudges.
  • A lady delicately sips her drink.
  • A lady does not put ice from her glass in her mouth.
  • A lady does not clink the spoon against the glass while stirring her drink.
Art: Johannes Vermeer

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Ladylike Bending

When a lady needs to reach something on or near ground level, she bends properly:
  • knees are bent and together
  • back is straight
  • thighs are level, parallel with the ground

A lady does not bend from the waist while keeping her knees straight.

Friday, May 11, 2018

How a Lady Handles a Green-Eyed Monster

When a lady encounters a jealous individual, either in a social setting or the workplace, she does her best to understand the underlying cause, and examines herself to see if she has inadvertently done anything to instigate or aggravate the jealousy.  If she becomes aware of anything she's done to offend, she privately and sincerely apologizes and expresses her hopes for an amiable relationship.

If she is not knowingly at fault in any way, then the following guidelines govern her behavior:

  • She does her best to ignore any signs of envy directed toward her.
  • She doesn't go out of her way to avoid or ignore the person.
  • She always greets the person by name with a pleasant smile and direct eye contact.
  • She never speaks ill of the person to others.
  • She is consistently kind and looks for ways to express a personal concern and support for the person, without seeming intrusive.
A lady is patient with disagreeable people, always hopeful that kindness will win them over in the end.  But regardless of the way others conduct themselves, she sticks to her code because of who she is.

Saturday, May 5, 2018

A Lady at the Theater

When a lady attends the theater with a man, she observes these guidelines:
  • If there is an usher on duty, the lady follows the usher first down the aisle, with her escort in the rear.
  • Where there is no usher, the lady follows her escort down the aisle and enters the row first.
  • A lady always sits farthest from the aisle, with the man taking the seat nearest the aisle.
  • When slipping past people in the row, a lady faces the stage and presses as close to the row in front of her as possible, being careful not to drag anything (purse, coat, etc.) over the heads of the people seated in front of her.*
  • Before she passes in front of someone, a lady says, "Excuse me," and then, "Thank you."  If she should happen to step on a toe or bump anyone, she says, "I'm very sorry."
  • After she has been seated, a lady turns her legs to allow a person to pass in front of her.
  • A lady keeps her belongings in her lap or under her seat to keep the space in front of her clear for others to pass.
  • A lady does nothing to disturb another's ability to enjoy the performance.
  • As a general rule, a lady precedes a man up the aisle after the performance. If, however, there is a crowd and the man can make the lady's way easier by going first through the throng, he takes the lead.

*In Europe it is considered good manners to face the back of the theater when passing.

Photo: Fox Theatre, Detroit, found on Pinterest

Friday, April 27, 2018

Feminine Underpinnings

As a firm rule, a lady always wears proper underpinnings. She does not wear skirts and dresses in public without a slip and stockings underneath.

A slip can be a lady's best friend as it serves several good purposes:
  • Helps a skirt or dress to drape properly 
  • Protects the skin from chafing against the fabric of the garment
  • Prevents the garment from clinging to the body
  • Prevents the silhouetting of a lady's legs in the sunlight * 
  • Prevents show through of intimate undergarments
Likewise, stockings have their benefits:
  • Give a polished, well-groomed appearance
  • Hide physical flaws such as bruises and scars (I once heard stockings described as foundation makeup for the legs)
  • Make shoes more comfortable by reducing rubbing 

*Some may remember when Lady Diana Spencer learned this the hard way.

Photo from Pinterest

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Answering Cheeky Questions About Larger Families

A lady who has been rewarded with several children may at times find herself the target of tactless questions and remarks, either by people she knows or complete strangers.

One gentle reader, mother to four children, has shared six comments that she frequently encounters, in hopes of arming herself with a gracious response.  Here are those comments with some suggested ladylike replies, to be given with a low tone, a warm smile, and a twinkle in the eye:

  1. Cheeky comment: "You know what causes that, don't you?"  Ladylike response: "Well, I suppose some scientists might call it survival of the fittest."
  2. Cheeky comment: "You guys need to get a TV."  Ladylike response: "Yes? Well, I suppose there are those who'd rather watch television."
  3. Cheeky comment: "Did you plan to have that many kids or was that an accident?"  Ladylike response: "Children are never accidents."
  4. Cheeky comment: "You guys are done, right?"  Ladylike response: ""Well, I really couldn't say.  We like to keep the busybodies talking!"
  5. Cheeky comment: "Wow, you have your hands full!"  Ladylike response: "Yes, it's a wonderful life!"
  6. Cheeky comment: "Are you guys Mormon or something?"  Ladylike response: "Or something!"

Answer not a fool according to his folly, lest thou also be like unto him.
Answer a fool according to his folly, lest he be wise in his own conceit.
Proverbs 26:4,5

Photo: Cheaper by the Dozen, 1950

Friday, April 20, 2018

An Unladylike Stance

A lady does not place her hands on her hips. Hips are not shelves for hands.