So, I know all three of you were anticipating my blog about being a modern lady. While doing research, I discovered some internal feelings that are incongruous with some traditional definitions of "modern lady-ness" that have been maintained. I also learned that a google search for "modern lady," "etiquette," or "manners" inevitably leads to images of, and references to, the Victorian Era. Wow, what a stiff, stuffy time. It seems like highly appropriate behavior is always aligned with highly uncomfortable situations…tea parties with old women, cotillion, meeting the boyfriend's/girlfriend's parents, coronations, etc. I think being a MODERN lady means naturally adapting to these normally uptight environs with grace and fluidity and THEN carrying these qualities on into more casual situations. Most women know what it means to be a lady, but a few need some handholding:
Would you permit your thong to ride out of the back of your pants while taking communion? Of course not. So, why am I seeing this while eating dinner at P.F. Chang's? I don't want to see your underwear during the Eucharist, nor during my chicken lettuce wraps.
Thank you notes. Write them. Write, right away. Go buy some cute stationery, it's good for you. When you're not sure if you should write one or not, write one.
Ok, so you have your fancy phone with its qwerty keyboard and flipping screen and your fave five and laser pointer and whatever. Cool, show it off all over the place, but not during a meal. Unless you're a doctor on call, you don't need to read that last succession of texts…it takes away from the attention you should be paying to the people/person you are eating with. Turn your volume off and save all of us from that Rihanna ringtone.
Traditional invitations are slowly being replaced by Evites. These are ecogroovy and cost effective and for some reason, viewed and then often ignored. The creator of the Evite can see that you have looked at the invitation, maybe several times, and completely failed to provide a response…what's the excuse here? It wasn't lost in the mail. Maybe you're receiving so many Evites that you can't keep track of them? In this case, I suggest you do a "Evite" key word search in your email inbox, bimonthly.
When you are in a class, conference, or lecture and need to excuse yourself from the room, do not walk in front of the person speaking. I had a professor who would completely stop the lecture and stare anyone down who attempted this…it was awesome.
Stop pointing out your perceived flaws in order to garner attention and swift rebuttals. Confidence is ladylike, and sexy, too.
Swearing. This was a hard one because I really like swearing. I think using forbidden words creates a solidarity among friends and peers…you just have to know when it is and isn't appropriate to drop certain f-bombs, s-bombs and p-bombs (a p-bomb is the word "panties" and it would be a bomb if you used it around me because I really don't like that word.) Cussing, at least for me, relieves stress. Moderation is key here.
This is kind of related to the cursing - don't shout. A lady should command attention simply with her composed presence and independence.
If you are with a friend or group of friends and then encounter other friend(s), introduce them to each other IMMEDIATELY. Do not wait for them to do it themselves…this makes everyone uncomfortable. There have been several times where I have had to introduce myself to a friend's friend and somehow I come out looking like the forward, peeved bitch…which I am when not properly introduced.
Say please and thank you. You can't say it too much. There isn't anyone exempt from your pleases and thank yous, by the way.Finally, don't get stupid drunk and solicit a hot bartender, continually. I am not going to give you an explanation or anecdote here, just don't do it...not ladylike.