Life is a series of jumping through hoops to prove you are a worthy candidate.
Why? — most people are idiots who are barely above the level of chimpanzees, if at all.
What defines us in this life are the exclusive choices we make, not the inclusive ones. Of course idiots are inclusive; what else would they be? They want to be included.
Exclusive choices include choice of mate. If you marry a girl, you should not be saying “OK, you’ll do,” but celebrating her as the best of the best and the right one for you.
Manners help define us. People who behave well show they are honestly considerate for others, and invested in a pattern of behavior that makes social interaction elevated, not animalistic or (worse) falsely humanistic and flattering.
Apparently, this nice little old lady in the UK decided to bawl out her son’s intended wife because the girl lacks manners:
It is high time someone explained to you about good manners. Yours are obvious by their absence and I feel sorry for you.
Unfortunately for Freddie, he has fallen in love with you and Freddie being Freddie, I gather it is not easy to reason with him or yet encourage him to consider how he might be able to help you. It may just be possible to get through to you though. I do hope so.
If you want to be accepted by the wider Bourne family I suggest you take some guidance from experts with utmost haste. There are plenty of finishing schools around.
Please, for your own good, for Freddie’s sake and for your future involvement with the Bourne family, do something as soon as possible.
Here are a few examples of your lack of manners:
- When you are a guest in another’s house, you do not declare what you will and will not eat – unless you are positively allergic to something. You do not remark that you do not have enough food. You do not start before everyone else. You do not take additional helpings without being invited to by your host.
- When a guest in another’s house, you do not lie in bed until late morning in households that rise early – you fall in line with house norms.
- You should never ever insult the family you are about to join at any time and most definitely not in public. I gather you passed this off as a joke but the reaction in the pub was one of shock, not laughter.
- You should have hand-written a card to me. You have never written to thank me when you have stayed.
- You regularly draw attention to yourself. Perhaps you should ask yourself why.
- No one gets married in a castle unless they own it. It is brash, celebrity style behaviour.
I understand your parents are unable to contribute very much towards the cost of your wedding. (There is nothing wrong with that except that convention is such that one might presume they would have saved over the years for their daughters’ marriages.)
If this is the case, it would be most ladylike and gracious to lower your sights and have a modest wedding as befits both your incomes. – The Daily Mail
Undoubtedly the sender of the email is a little bit bitchy, clearly does not think highly of her future daughter-in-law, and may resent her son marrying anyone. However — she’s correct.
Manners are useful things. Young ladies who chuck them out the window are saying “Me first, me first before the rest of you all!” and while it’s not pleasant to say so, it’s necessary.
You are the company you keep, your family and your own behavior. Let us listen to one of the most honorable characters in the most romantic book ever written, Pride and Prejudice:
“The situation of your mother’s family, though objectionable, was nothing in comparison of that total want of propriety so frequently, so almost uniformly, betrayed by herself, by your three younger sisters, and occasionally even by your father.
Pardon me. It pains me to offend you. But amidst your concern for the defects of your nearest relations, and your displeasure at this representation of them, let it give you consolation to consider that to have conducted yourselves so as to avoid any share of the like censure is praise no less generally bestowed on you and your eldest sister, than it is honourable to the sense and disposition of both.” – Fitzwilliam Darcy
Throughout the novel, we see the same theme: people without manners lack common sense because they are oblivious to the world outside of themselves.
Jane Austen’s book — nicknamed “the eugenics novel” by my professor at college — tells a tale of a few inwardly beautiful people in a world of selfish, solipsistic, manipulative whores disguised as gentry.
Whether or not Carolyn Bourne is a raging bitch, her email landed some soft punches bearing the reality that young women should face today.
You are in a society that rewards hedonism, selfishness and the pursuit of meaningless desire, but that is a control mechanism that keeps you docile and sabotages your true potential.
Instead, you should be working toward long term goals and beautiful things, in lieu of competing with your fellow future proles for the affections, attention and drama of your social circle. That is transient.
You may think you are clever and that you have gotten away with something, but what you have done instead is to broadcast that you are self-centered, which makes it easy to manipulate you.
Whether that’s some smarmy pick-up artist telling you how beautiful you look, a con man telling you how educated you are, or politicians telling you that you are too elite to not have the “right” ideas, it’s a sham.
But you do it to yourselves. Manners are a way out of the abyss that is the self, and you should listen to your (possibly bitchy) elders and pick up on the solid reasons why we have manners, not the simple fact that they bother you and might muss your hair.