In an age in which tweed jackets have been replaced by sweatshirts, pants have holes and shoes lack laces, and the “un-done” look is considered attractive, maybe we need to reconsider our codes of conduct, especially when it comes to the art of being a man. Thus, the question is begged: What makes a man?
1. A man has public decorum.
He opens doors for ladies and his elders as a sign of respect; likewise, he walks on the side of the curb and he offers his jacket. He minds his P’s and Q’s at all times, whether he is with the janitor or the CEO. A man never makes anyone wait for he is always on time. A man is never rude.
2. A man knows how to eat properly.
He knows to put his napkin in his lap and to rise when a lady enters. He knows which fork to use for his salad and which spoon belongs with desert. A man knows to scoop his soup away from him and to cut one bite at a time. Upon the conclusion of the meal, a man always offers to pay.
3. A man keeps his home.
He does not leave his laundry on the floor and his dishes in the sink because a man is always prepared for company. For the same reason, he always has a bottle of wine, some beer, liquor, and finger food in case an unexpected guest arrives. Upon their arrival, a man never fails to take their coats, offer a drink, and make his guests feel at home.
4. A man manages his money and takes care of his possessions.
A man operates on the principle of “cash on the barrel”—or as close to that as is possible in the twenty-first century. He never lives outside his means. A man never wakes up wondering how he spent several hundred dollars at the bar the night before. Furthermore, a man knows how to take care of that which he owns: He can change his oil, change a tire, find his way around the hardware store, and maintain his home. He knows how to pack his pipe and how to cut his cigar.
5. A man does not play video games nor does he engage in other childish fooleries.
A man does not spend his day sitting on the davenport, in his plaid pajama pants with his hair undone, a five o’clock shadow, and a box of pizza yelling at his television screen as he plays video games. Likewise, a man does not put sporting games and fantasy teams before people. When he was a child, he acted as a child, but when he became a man, he did away with the things of a child. Yes, the past is what is known and for that reason hard to relinquish, but if he cannot put down the FIFA remote, comic strips, and his dreams of being a rockstar, man should consider channeling his creative and competitive energies elsewhere.
6. A man does not say “um.”
A man never utilizes “um,” “a,” “like,” or other filler words because he listens and thinks before he speaks. A man gives others the time of day and pays attention to details.
7. A man is always prepared.
A man does not board an airplane for work in jeans with a backpack, for he knows he could run into anyone. A man is never without a pen in case he needs to write down something important. Similarly, a man always has an umbrella and a jacket on hand, lest the weather takes him by surprise.
8. A man is never boring.
A man is passionate about that which matters to him. He is cultured in literature, the arts, politics, and societies other than his own. A man stays informed and always seeks to learn. A man has taste: He knows his Mozart from his Haydn, his oxford from his polo, his stout from his porter, and his scotch from his bourbon. For these reasons, a man is never boring.
9. A man knows what he wants.
A man never leaves others to wonder about his intent because a man always takes initiative, he plans in advance, keeps his word, and is honest. A man does not lead people on, nor does he wait until the last minute. A man knows what he wants and tries to attain it.
10. A man knows and takes care of himself.
A man does not waste time. He does not seek to “find himself” because he already knows himself. A man knows what matters in life, he knows what he wants and how to secure it. A man knows his manners and does not allow others to treat him with a lack of manners. A man takes care of himself and his body because a man is always prudent.
These are ten things that make a man.
This blog post has been reproduced with the permission of The Imaginative Conservative. The original blog post can be found here. The views expressed by the author and The Imaginative Conservative are not necessarily endorsed by this organization and are simply provided as food for thought from Intellectual Takeout.
Image Credit: Movie-Fan via Flickr http://bit.ly/1hYHpKw