Monthly Archives: October 2009

What is a Gentleman?

10-27-2009-knight_chess_piece_j0177919We see Christianity’s timeless, powerful and wise influence upon the world of manners from one of my older etiquette book’s first chapter:
“What is a gentleman? The question is an old one. It cannot be ancestry, for often the son of the most noble and honored parentage is merely a coarse compound of clay and money…It cannot be dress–for surely Beau Brummell  (and today we could include famous well dressed entertainment and political personalities) was not what the world loves to call a gentleman, despite his stiffly starched cravats and brightly polished boots. It cannot be money, for then many a common thief, made wealthy by ill-gotten gains, would be entitled to the name of gentleman. No, it’s something that goes deeper than ancestry or dress or wealth–something that is nobler and finer than any, or all, of these….by faithful constancy to the rules (of  good manners)  he and we gradually mold our characters until, in our outward dignity and charm, the world reads and understands our ideals.” Continue reading

Best Man & His Wife’s Duties?

single_groomsman_tux“Are there any special responsibilities as the wife of the best man?” was the second part of a recent question that Protocol Matters received (and, in this case, the wife of the best man is also the sister of the groom).

Answer: You have some involvement as wife of the best man, however, all etiquette authorities agree that you have no official responsibilities specified in protocol, other than being a cheerful support to your “best man”. You will be invited to the rehearsal dinner, but are not expected to perform any duties.

This does not mean you cannot help, but the amount and specifics of any duties are optional and will generally be in the form of assistance to your husband. This requires discretion and sensitivity on your part. How much assistance does your husband want or need in his duties, which were defined earlier. He will likely be happy to have your help and attention to detail, especially if his time is limited as the wedding day approaches…. Continue reading

Best Man Duties

single_groomsman_tuxProtocol Matters received this two part Question: My husband is best man at my brother’s wedding. What are his duties before, during, and after the big day? Do I have any responsibilities as the wife of the best man?

Answer: Your questions are good ones, especially since brothers or cousins are often asked to be a best man, and how they handle this important role can impact the wedding (as well as future relations) for better or for worse. Kudos to you and your husband that you care enough to do some advance footwork. I think you’ll find the general protocol helpful…  the first part of your question is answered below and a post answering the second part follows in a few days. Continue reading

Double Duty Discovery: Expository Writing Assignment Using Protocol Matters

Dear Ms. Deb… I’m happy you chose Protocol Matters for your students’ expository assignment. How thoughtful of you to keep me in the loop with your email. Thank you!  Other than keeping me on my toes, (which is a welcome exercise) you are certainly no trouble. Continue reading

Protocol Matters Lost a Friend

Protocol Matters lost a dear friend this last week. Sharon Howell was an enthusiastic supporter of PM, good friend, and fellow protocol instructor. This was a lady who understood the importance of etiquette as an expression of respect for other people. She knew how much right actions matter. Continue reading

Spitting–Missing the Mark

Spitting in public is nothing new. It’s not unsual when out and about to see youngish swaggering guys launch their slobbery marks in an attempt to appear awesome.  However, rather than being a cool macho thing, spitting has long been recognized as inconsiderate, rude, and even childish.  Continue reading