Hey there and welcome to the BigAppleSchool podcast. My name is Sam.
And today we’re asking what’s the craic about being a gentleman. Unison. So we’ll look at whether or not we consider ourselves gentlemen.
You got the answer, the podcast over. We’ll talk a little bit about feminism, cause we can’t talk about men.
I mean we could, but it’d be wrong. It wouldn’t be … to do.
We’ll look at some general rules or rules that I have acquired regarding being a gentleman. Are they relevant, are they silly? Are they outdated? Some embarrassing things we might do in public, like farting - do we do that?
We’ll let you know, you’ll get the dirt on us. How to dress like a gentleman or should we dress like a gentleman? In modern society is there a place for gentlemen? Right? The world is changing, has changed. Is there a place for it? So let’s get cracking. Brian? Are you ready?
Are you sitting comfortably?
No. Gentlemen don’t sit comfortable.
How would your friends describe you?
As a gentleman? I don’t know.
In general? You know, I think depends on friends. Some friends would say I’m a jerk, some friends would say I’m a really nice guy. Yeah you know, it depends on how you define a friend. But anyway I mean we talked about friends before.
I mean most people would say that I’m a gentleman I guess if we’re using rules we’re gonna talk about today. So, you know, that’s kind of a general thing they would say about me. And yourself?
Well I guess they, you know… I’m asking you. I think they would say generally good things.
I mean as my friend told, if your friends can’t say something good, then you’re in trouble. I would like to think they consider me a gentleman. I certainly consider my, especially my best friend, I consider him a gentleman.
And I think that we share that with each other. I think so. So yeah.
How would you define the word gentleman then?
I hope my students would agree too. Well, we’ll get into that, but it’s a good question to start out with I guess. Gentle towards women.
Yes. Mostly. Of course a gentleman is not someone who is unpolite or rude or rough with men per se. But he can play sports and be less gentle with guys. You know, as a kind of what guys do. Be a bit rough.
But I think the thing about gentlemen is specifically how you treat women. And being careful about how you treat women. It should affect how you treat everybody of course. But I think for me that’s the main thing. What do you think?
I would agree to a degree. I would say that it should extend further than just women. Because I would say the mantra about women and children first, I would go as far as to day that, especially when it comes to situations where someone’s safety is concerned. I would go further than just the women.
That’s a good point, yeah.
Especially when, you know, obviously all of the children exist because of a woman, you know. So I would go further than saying just women. And I also I might even say that a gentleman isn’t always going to be gentle with everyone
because if you’re talking about protecting your family, your loved ones, even your friends – I think you have to, at some point, draw a line. So there are certain things in etiquette we can talk about.
Correct. I would say, you know, at certain times it’s called for. You kinda have to do this kind of thing. Especially if you’re serving in the armed forces of some kind.
Or you’re a police officer- you can’t be gentle with people you’re addressing as criminals or, if you’re in a military, you know, you’re following orders and you’re going to do things that sometimes are not gentle. Hopefully not to innocent bystanders, women and children.
Only to a mister terrorist, would you over here…
Please put your hands up.
We could, we could do that.
I have a funny feeling that might not be effective.
So do you consider yourself a gentleman?
I do. I do consider myself a gentleman, I’m trying to do things that demonstrate a mentality of, firstly, not putting myself first. You know, I think that’s kind of key in my opinion of being a gentleman is considering others first.
Obviously, doing what you say. And saying what you mean. I think that a lot of times, at least for myself, I tend to use sarcasm, which can be an ungentlemanly thing to do, if the situation is unwanted. But at the same time…
We all need more sarcasm.
We do. Laughter is the best medicine, so, you know, sometimes sarcasm is okay, but…
Don’t take it the wrong way.
But I think sometimes, especially in my younger years, as I’ve been growing up I’ve learned that, you know, sometimes you need to just do what you say. And there was a movie that I watched one time many years ago where the guy said, one of the characters said that what you need to do is just fix the damn door.
And so if you say you’re gonna do something, you do it. And I think that’s really a key component of being not only a gentleman, but just being an adult. And I think that too many times people don’t follow through. And I think gentlemen have to really do that. If you’re going to do that, you do it. Don’t be tentative.
Ladies should do that too.
Well no, not only men, but as a man I’m not gonna call out the ladies on that, because that’s up to a woman to do. But I would definitely call out a man if he says ‘I’m gonna do this’ and then he don’t do it, I would definitely say ‘That’s definitely not being a gentleman’. It’s more than just manners and etiquette.
So we’ve got gentleman as honest, is a defender and he’s gentle towards, well, towards those he’s defending. Pretty much.
And towards the defenseless I would say.
Women and orphans. But, you know, again, children for sure. How would you define? Would you go in different direction, add some more tendance?
All that definition scares me to be honest.
Do I really feel that I must measure up to it.
I’m Batman, I don’t have to be a gentleman.
That’s a really good question.
That’s not a question that we planned on asking. But is he a gentleman?
Well, does he do those things? He does what he says.
He defends the defenseless, he says what he’s gonna do. He’s gentle to those he should be protecting, right?
And he does have a line he won’t cross. That’s one of his faults.
A line he won’t break unless you watch some… most of the films.
But it seems like especially his antagonists in the stories always try to draw him across the line he’ll never cross. And he has this moral, you know, dilemma in many cases – should I do this? Should I not? Would it be easier to do this? You know – but if I do this, am I giving up myself to do it? So, you know.
I don’t know. I like to consider myself as a gentleman, I strive to be a gentleman.
It’s the answer. I may have failed, but I strive to be a gentleman.
And having failures is okay. That’s part of growth, that really is. And part of being a gentleman is admitting when you’re wrong. I think that I personally have had that in the past when I made a mistake and I don’t want to own up to it
because it’s so much easier to hope that the other party doesn’t remember, doesn’t address it. But in many cases I would say that that other person who has hopes that you will do the right thing, and just say ‘I’m sorry, I’m sorry’.
Exactly. Or a smaller man, whichever is…
And by the way, Brian, don’t get mushy, but the reason we’re talking, you and I, about this, is because I thought being a gentleman would be good for you.
Thank you, I appreciate that.
I need to be more gentle. I appreciate that.
Maybe it’s the suit. I don’t think it’s just the suit.
Maybe. Maybe it’s the jacket. Okay.
Okay. Number four, our 4th question…
How do you feel about feminism?
Now this is the deep topic.
I don’t know. There are so many facets to feminism and I don’t think if we’re sticking or trying to stick as close to gentlemen as possible to stay on topic, I don’t think that you have to be anti-feminism to be a gentleman.
I don’t think you gotta be pro-feminism to be a gentleman. And I don’t think that if you’re feminist, it has to mean you hate men. And I think that if that’s what a feminist says, that to be feminist you must hate men, hate everything that is masculine, I think that’s not feminism.
I would say that feminism, at least in its inception, is more about the quality. And I would say not a quality of outcomes, which we can have that debate ad nauseum at a later time, I wouldn’t wanna do that now.
I would say that if feminism is what we’re talking about in its original form where we’re striving for men and women to be treated equally to have the same opportunities…
Opportunities, not outcomes. Opportunities. I would say that feminism is good. I would say that any feminist ideology which seeks to destroy the identity of a man because he is a man, because he’s different in my opinion biologically, he’s different;
Neurologically, emotionally, the man is built differently in my opinion. So a feminist who would say being a man is bad, why would say why aren’t you making the same argument a man could make and say ‘being a woman is bad’. Just being that.
Just if she were in the other foot…
It would be a complete aberration in today’s eyes.
That would be, oh yeah, you couldn’t say that.
You’d be burned to a steak.
You couldn’t say that in fact… You’d better tell them you didn’t mean that.
I didn’t mean that. Of course.
I think they know, I think they know. I think… Do you know what I think?
No. I’d like to know though. Please, share. This is the podcast where we share.
I think that feminism in its extreme has done other service to women. Because it’s kind of forcing women to be like men. You must… I mean there’s the idea of equality, which is great. Like if a woman chooses to work- great, that’s her choice, that’s okay.
And she should be paid for doing the same work the same amount of money as a guy, and that’s fine and I absolutely agree with that. But I think what feminism did and maybe it’s not just that, maybe it’s history and world war II et cetera, but women now are working more than ever before.
And the thing is that whether intentionally or not, women tend to then come home and do housework and look after kids, and that tends to fall to them too. So my view is that feminism, maybe not just feminism, but extreme feminism, has actually left women with busier, more…
…more hectic lives. And maybe it’s partly world war II, because the men were away fighting and women started to work. I guess that’s part of it too, but.. and I think as well that in Russia it’s interesting, because I think, from what I see, women are allowed to be women, and women want to be women in how they dress..
Whereas in the UK – I can only speak of the UK really, but women are tend to be striving to be more like men. Not that they’re not women, but I think that they’re trying, really trying to compete with men. And the reality is that…
Well my view is that they shouldn’t be trying to compete with men, they should be trying, we both should be trying to help each other.
True. I think the competition really comes trough the workplace, in the job force. And I think that if you’re looking at it just form that perspective, there are so many reasons why men and women have to compete in a workplace. If you want a promotion, right?
If you want a promotion, do you give it to the man because he’s a man? No. Do you give it to a woman because she’s a woman? No. I would say no to both of those. And it’s a doggy dog world in a workplace.
And I’m gonna go here, I’m gonna go there…
This advantage, if you like, if you can call it that, for a woman is that a woman will be pregnant…
Could be pregnant, of course. And I think that’s… I mean that is.. can cause inequality.
Because that the woman has to… If she wants children, a couple want children, a man and a woman want children, the woman of course needs to do that. The man is free from that.
Well, he has other obligations. As a part of being tied…
No, he’s not tied to the medical thing, the medical… not problem, the medical procedures that follow. Of course not. But…
I think it’s tricky because equality is good, but then there is the reality where woman will have to take off work, and a man.. Well in the UK a man has less time off work. There’s maternity leave and a paternity leave. That’s fair enough.
That’s the way in the US as well. I think that if we’re coming back to a gentleman, in a world like today, right? If you’re in a relationship, you and your spouse, you and your wife, and you’re a gentleman, then I would say that all of those problems that exist
her coming home from work, you coming home from work, and her doing… she’s doing all of the housework. Are you being a gentleman if she’s doing everything and you’re sitting on your butt and doing nothing?
No, I would say not a gentleman. Because as a couple, there should be an agreement, where both going to do these things. When I was married, we each had our own chores as it were.
She didn’t always cook, I didn’t always cook. But there was a rule that whoever cooked, the other person did the dishes. Normally I did the dishes even if I cooked, because I actually liked doing the dishes. I know that’s a strange thing, I got that thing from my father, which is very, I don’t know, cathartic is a good word for it. It’s relaxing for me.
I didn’t do the dishes often, I don’t find it relaxing.
I understand. She did the laundry, I cut the grass, we clean the house together because it was unfair especially if she was cleaning the house, that I would sit there and watch TV. Or leave and spend time with my friends while things were being done at home.
As a gentleman I think you need to treat your partner, you wife. Especially now, we’re equal, but you want her to have a great life. Because I don’t think that any woman who is married, wants her husband to suffer. Because that is not a good spouse to have. That’s what I’ve been telling about gentlemen and feminism.
I agree with you totally. And I do try to share with my wife. I mean, my dad does the dishes at home, and he helps my mom out. And I’ve learned that from him.
There you go. She had an excellent example right there. That’s good.
So let’s get back. We’ll leave feminism for now. What do you think of these rules, Brian?
He stands, the guy, the gentleman, when I woman enters the room?
I really like this, I wouldn’t say rule, I like this habit. I like what this means, I really do. I think that it really symbolizes, from the moment she enters, that your attention is on her.
Is this for someone you’re romantically attached to or is it for any woman?
Well, I think it has to begin really with that person you’re romantically attached to. And then it extends then…
I think I would have sore legs.
I understand, I understand.
If it applied to every single woman.
True. And I think it depends on how you define the room. Like is it any room? Did you include the bus as a room?
I think, if you’re gonna do it as a rule, then it could apply to any space where one enters.
I don’t know how you can do this on a bus, because she is not your guest on a bus, she is a passenger, you are a passenger. If you’re driving the bus, do you stand? I mean, how fat does this go, right? I mean I would say honestly, if you’re going to apply this rule, it needs to be…
To someone in the bus, when the moment comes up…
That would be really extreme. I would say in this case it would be a woman who is your guest or who in some manner is going to be having a conversation with you of any length.
I don’t think that if, you know, you’re sitting in office, and there’s a hundred people in the office, and a woman enters, that every man stands up. I think there you’re going a little far.
And there’s a question – is that being treated equal?
As well. That might offend someone.
Normally I’ve only seen this in movies.
I think it’s her cake. I accept your view. I think it’s pain to do.
I could do it with my wife, but I think it’s pain.
But yeah. The next one – he walks by her on the outside, closest to the street.
And the idea is if it’s raining or if there’s some danger, he catches it. He’s kind of protecting, defending the woman. What we talked about.
Yes. I always do this. I was taught very young by my parents, I was taught by my grandmother and grandfather that that is what a man does. I’ve always done this. I think it’s just a symbol.
If there’s ever a time where we happen to turn a corner in some way and I am now on the inside, I feel uncomfortable. I really do. I feel like why am I on the inside? If something happens, then I can’t do anything about it. So I always strive to be on the outside.
I don’t think that I do this intentionally, but has happened is – my mom used to lead my brother and I, my older brother and I through the town, and she always would, if we were near the road or in a narrow path or a sidewalk if you prefer
she would be on the outside, protecting her two little sons. You know? That was when we were still children.
And I learned that from my mom and I don’t pick that up as a gentleman, just as a way to protect my wife, for example. I think I did do it, but not really conscious of this is what a gentleman needs to do. I think I just do it as a way of keeping…
Don’t want anything to happen to her. He opens the door for her. And this is the sign of protection or strength. You got the muscles.
So, I have an interesting story. Speaking of my grandmother again, my mom’s mom – I would visit her quite often when I was young. And one time we were going to a mall because she enjoyed, as all women do at least in the United States.
they enjoy going to the mall and just walking. They wanna walk around. I mean, that’s okay. So we would go to the mall every day if I was staying with her, and walk around the mall.
Have a dander as I’d say.
To have a look at the window, be nosy. See what the craic is.
So, one time we were walking to the mall from her car, and I went inside and didn’t open the door for her. She stood at the door. She did not open that door.
So I walked, I don’t know, probably about 20 meters, and I noticed she wasn’t there. And I turned around and she was standing at the door, waiting. Just staring at the door.
Right. You wouldn’t get away with it.
And so I went back, I opened the door and I said ‘Why didn’t you come inside?’ and she said ‘You didn’t hold the door for me’. And that was it. And I never did not hold door. Could not.
Terrible. I mean that’s my grandma! For that – of course! It’d hurt her! She was definitely an important woman in my life.
She really did. And that is imprinted in my mind that when there is a door, you hold it, especially for a woman. But sometimes, even just for another man – it’s fine. If you’re at the door and there’s someone right behind you, you hold it.
Now if they’re a distance away, then it really depends on how far. But especially for a woman, if you’re there with a guest…
Should a woman go in first, is that necessary?
Because if you hold the door and you’re going first, then it’s awkward to hold the door. It becomes the challenge both for you and for the person following you. So you really need to hold the door and let that person pass. At least in my opinion.
Yeah, I mean, I hold the door for my wife. Sometimes I’m going first, sometimes I don’t, but I always hold the door. I will not not hold the door unless it’s physically impossible.
I’m carrying something or whatever. But I don’t necessarily… I might the first guy, first person.
But I do try to keep that rule. I try not to push it in front of women, if there’s a choice, I try to let the woman pass… A gentleman never criticizes a home-made meal. Do you think that’s a good rule?
I think it’s a good rule. I haven’t always followed it. I do normally… I enjoy, I love to eat. If it’s delicious…
It is useful. I love to eat. Unfortunately one time I did make the mistake – my ex-wife, she tried he best to make a meal that was difficult, and we both knew it wasn’t very good. And we had a hearty laugh about it. I don’t know if that hurt her feelings, because we both laughed.
And sometimes I know that you may laugh, even though it’s uncomfortable. But normally I don’t criticize a home-made meal because I myself enjoy cooking and I know that it’s a task, it’s a chore to cook. And when someone cooks for you, you appreciate that.
It is made with love and care. It is normally not just a health hazard thing. And so I don’t normally criticize a home-made meal. That’s a general rule for myself.
I think… I might say, you know, this might’ve been better, that might’ve been better. I mean, in a completely understanding way, because my wife, to be quite honest, is a better cook. My mom is a better cook, so there’s no point in me criticizing just for sake of it. No. But I might say, well, it was…
I would like this salter, yeah.
Well, nothing. I mean, if it’s just that, I need to put more salt on. I don’t like the salt.
I don’t like the salt. I had pepper to salt. I’m not a gentleman, darn. Darn whatever. I prefer the pepper. I’m a spicy kind of guy.
I think we won’t do all these tips. He pulls her chair.
I don’t always do this. I think it’s a good rule. I don’t think it’s archaic personally. I don’t think it’s a task or a chore. I think if especially you’re on a date, or if you’re with someone you truly care about, you do this.
Now, I know that sometimes you can’t, you’re just sitting in a booth, you can’t. There’s no chair to pull out. But I think that especially if you want her to feel special, you do this. I think I would even do this if I had a daughter – I would pull out her chair on many occasions.
Yes, yes. I think it’s a good rule.
I think it’s a good rule. I don’t think I’ve ever done it. Don’t think so. It’s never been a thing in my family. And it’s never been expected of me, I don’t think I’ve ever done it. But I like the principle – it makes a woman feel important.
And the next rule kinda follow is, kinda he says, she says, obviously. If you pull her chair out, she is sitting first.
But is it a question? Feminists might hate this, extreme feminists, because it might seem like ‘oh he’s in charge and she’s a lower party’.
Again I would say it’s more of a protecting rule. And if a feminist feels she doesn’t need a man to protect her, then I think that in the relationship you need to establish that as something that’s not done.
Because the general rule, unless I am told, otherwise the person I’m with ‘don’t do this’, I’m going to do it. And I think it’s just a good rule to have. Because you want a person you’re with to feel safe, to enjoy themselves and to feel protected.
and I think as a man if you look at male creatures in the animal kingdom, that they’re the same way - the man normally as the protector, a defender, you know.
Unless it’s a mama and her cubs.
Well let’s look at one more – he picks up the cheque. Who pays?
Well I think, you know, honestly that is a thing to be answered by each couple. I normally do this.
Going Dutch. Have you heard of that phrase?
I have, I have. It is something that happens even with me. I’ve gone on some dates, I would say or outings where I’m paying for one portion and she’s paying for another. But normally this is because we haven’t reached the point in a relationship where we’re officially dating.
Once we’re dating, normally I pay for the majority of not all things. And maybe it’s fair, maybe it’s not fair, maybe it’s machismo, I don’t know. But I just feel like again I’m conducting the protector rule – it is a man who need to show you can care for the woman. And it’s kinda your role.
I think it depends on… I mean, I’m married, so the way I look at it as a married couple – if my wife pays. Her money and my money, as far as I’m concerned, is one collection.
True, pot. It’s different when you’re married I would say.
So I think it doesn’t really apply to a married couple per se. But I sometimes wonder what people think if my wife paid and I’m standing there, let her do thing, that I’m a cheapskate. But I mean, I often say to her ‘listen, I’m paying but it’s our money, it’s not my money’.
But I actually think that it depends on who’s earning more money, I mean, if it’s a dating couple and the woman’s earning money and the guy is a student, not earning, I don’t see a problem with woman paying.
I don’t see a problem with that.
If they’re agreeing to that.
Correct. I wouldn’t really. I mean, it’s case by case.
Do you ever fart in public?
Can I use your example now?
No. I can’t. I really do my best not to do this, I’m feeling comfortable when either happens. I really do my best not to do… to keep all bodily functions in the bathroom.
Well you can ask my wife about this. I don’t do it in front of her.
But my wife may or may not have heard some things. Poor wife.
It happens. You’re a person, you’re a human being, so.
Well, when I’m at home, I’m more relaxed, which may or may not be a good thing. And honestly, I suppose if you push me I’d say it’s not gentlemanly. When I’m at home and I’m relaxed and both my wife and my mom know. How important is it to dress like a gentleman?
I think that if you dress a certain way, people see you a certain way. You yourself, certainly. At least for myself, for me personally. I enjoy looking nice, I enjoy wearing a nice shirt, a tie sometimes, a jacket, you know. I enjoy how I feel when I look nice.
Can I be a gentleman and wear a relaxed outfit? Shorts? A t-shirt? Shoes? Yes, I think it’s more than that, because you can also dress very nice to the nines so to speak, and be a jerk. And not be kind, and not have etiquette and manners. I think the way you treat someone is much more important than how you look.
Sure, sure. It’s the heart.
My looks on the outside, the appearance, in regards to the heart.
Yeah, You know I would agree with you. Sure it’s great and it’s something good about looking good and dressing good. <…..> Don’t love wearing them – I wore one to my wedding registration, but I like them.
Maybe mostly because I hate multiple ties. I hate them. All through my school, even… I think it started when I was maybe seven, cause before that we didn’t have to wear ties. Since maybe 7 years old I had to wear a tie until I was 16. Every day at school.
And then in some of the workplaces I’ve been, on a few different jobs. In one particular I had to wear a tie every single day for 5ish years, and I hate them. It’s restrictive.
I understand. I enjoy it, to be honest, because, again, for me it feels like I’m dressing up, I’m feeling nice.
I like… Don’t get me wrong, I like the idea of dressing up, but just the restrictiveness. I guess if you wear it every day, it becomes not special. Is there a place in modern society for a gentleman?
Of course. I would say wholeheartedly that if you want to be a man in the term, using the word as someone who’s a leader, who’s a provider, who cares about people that he loves, and who will demonstrate that to action.
I think all of those things are a part of being a gentleman. I don’t think that if you don’t follow all of these guidelines you said for, then it doesn’t make you a gentleman. I think a lot of it comes back to, like we said earlier, do you put those you care about before yourself?
I think that is definitely at the heart of it – being honest, I think that it must be key if you’re going to be a gentleman. And I don’t think that either of those are contrary to modern society, I don’t think that lying becomes anyone to be honest.
I think it’s a very immature thing to do, being dishonest and I put it at being selfish. It doesn’t have any place in society, cause if you only care about yourself, then what are you teaching your children?
What are you teaching your friends? What are you telling your spouse? So I think that like we were talking about earlier, the basic guidelines, they definitely fit in the modern society.
Cool. So there you go folks. We talked about being a gentleman, what it is to be a gentleman. What does that mean. We defined it for you, you may have your own. We talked about feminism – you can’t just talk about a gentleman being a gentleman and not speak about feminism.
Looked at some of the rules that we found connected with being a gentleman, gave our opinion. Do we fart in public? So we don’t, but I may be a little bit more guilty in that. How to dress like a gentleman, is there place for a gentleman in modern society? We reckoned yeah.
We think yes. So go for it guys! Be a gentleman! That was the craic about being a gentleman.