The lost art of being a gentleman

It’s the spring of 1920, and a young couple is on their way to some Vaudeville entertainment in downtown New York City. En route the couple comes across a puddle in the sidewalk, and the gentleman promptly removes his coat placing it over the puddle so the lady can walk across without getting her shoes or dress wet.

90 years later, the art of being a gentleman has been lost. Gone for most are the days of opening doors for women, seating them first, helping them put their coat on, or greeting them with flowers. We have watered that down to one day a year when we buy the first non embarrassing Hallmark card, a box of chocolates and whatever flower special we find online.

Before some of you get nauseous and decide to stop reading, let me brief you on the premise of this blog so you don’t miss out. This blog is not suggesting, that you put your expensive leather jacket over a puddle, or that all men should be gentlemen. This blog is not putting all blame on men(ladies you have some fault in this too). This blog is not a feeble attempt to impress ladies. What this blog is, is a challenge to some to ponder whether we have let some standards slip that shouldn’t have. As a community we need to strive to reevaluate our lives and see what we can improve on, for better quality of our lives and the lives of those around us. For those of you who think I am crazy, I dare you to bring your most well thought out arguments to the table….

Why is this important? 3 days ago one of our beloved mofo’s left this in the confessional:

“I’m thinking about getting a tazer and zapping all the mofos that start thinking about dating each other. It would save a lot of drama down the road. “

This is a thought that I know many can relate to, but why does it have to be this way. Sure Indymojo is not a dating site nor should it be, but it’s inevitable that with spring and summer coming, warm weather, live music, and parties are going to lead to many hookups in the coming days. Since hook ups can’t be avoided perhaps we need to rethink the way that relationships work and adjust. After all, easier breakups lead to less drama, and that’s a win for everyone(besides the relationships between mojo and non-mojo members seem to bring just as much drama).

Where has the art of gentleman gone? It has been lost amidst shattered dreams, broken relationships, cheating, and laziness.. It is a terrible cycle really, both men and women get burned in relationships where they did nothing wrong(except in some cases make a bad choice for a partner), and eventually they feel the effort is no longer worth it, and they lower their standards. For guys, they stop trying to be a gentleman, and just settle for doing whatever comes to mind, they become selfish and ego-centric.. Why does this work? Because women have been burned too, resulting in lower standards, and making guys work less to earn the same reward. As the guy quality goes down, women lower their standards, as women lower their standards, the guy quality goes down more, and before you know it! Things like cheating and lying are common place and even in some places acceptable.

In the last week three people have challenged me about whether I am really a nice guy or not. Some people think that “The Nice Guy” is just a costume I wear to make women feel good in the hopes that I can “score”, for others, they think that I am setting a standard that I can’t follow in the long term and eventually I will crumble. Still others just think I am weird… Reality is it’s who I have always been and who I will continue to be. Now I am not perfect by any stretch of the imagination, I can look back at times in my past and see plenty of stupid mistakes. Nor am I suggesting perfection. I simply have some core values that shape the decisions I make, and over the long run that allows me to produce a consistently “Nice Guy”

See being a gentleman is not about 15 rules of proper etiquette. It’s a step back from that. It is realizing that women are not a piece of meat, a footstool, or a means to an end. They are human beings with, feelings, emotions, and how you treat them will impact them greatly both now and for the rest of their lives. From that standpoint you can then decide how to apply that in any particular relationship. For some women, this may be opening the door for them, however some women feel offended by such things, so it may be supporting them in other ways, perhaps emotionally, perhaps with encouragement.

Being a gentleman does not apply to just romantic relationships. Helping an old lady across the street, or helping a neighbor carry their groceries in, can be just as gentlemanly as greeting your date with flowers. The bottom line though is our generation has grown selfish, and we have lost the art of putting others first, something that was a cornerstone of being a gentleman back in the day.

Guys I am going to pick on us first because the problem started with us. Finding a woman these days with true self esteem(I am not talking about women who fake being confident because they are insecure, know the difference!), is practically impossible. Why? Because we as men haven’t given women a reason to be confident. If you have a significant other in your life or at least someone who you want to be a significant other down the road potentially, what are you doing to support them and make them feel confident. Are you putting them first, do their needs come before your own? Over time you start to learn that the joy that comes from fulfilling our wants fades quickly, but the joy that comes from fulfilling someone else’s wants never goes away. Do the women in your life, friends or more, feel safe around you, do they trust you, do they feel like they can come to you with anything? Do women feel respected when they are around you? Or do they have to put their guard up. This is sooo important. The more people women are around that make them put their guard up the more they get locked into putting their guard up, eventually they trust no guys, which leads to insecurity and again the cycle is started. As men we need to create a safe environment for women. I can’t honestly see a single drawback from that whatsoever, even if you are not into serious relationships, if mojo has a reputation for being full of ass holes and creeps, good luck getting a new ladies to join or get involved…. Things like cheating and lying are a lot harder to do(damned near impossible IMO) if you are really putting others before yourself…

Ladies, ladies, ladies, you are not without blame in this dilemma. Everytime you let a guy below your standards get involved in your life you are making it acceptable for guys to keep acting the way they are. I realize no one wants to be alone, and sometimes it can be very tempting to let your standards slip in order to be happy, but in the end if you get burned is it really worth it? If guys find that they can consistently treat women like crap and get away with it, will they ever change? You deserve respect, and you deserve quality, but if you don’t stand and wait for it? You will never get it. If every woman on the planet stood up one day and decided that they would not give men the time of day until they learned to treat all women with respect, men would puff their chest out and determine themselves to hold out… for about 3 days, then they would give in and do whatever it took. TRUST ME. Stop traveling from broken relationship to broken relationship, one of the biggest keys to getting respect from guys is respecting yourself.

Why am I so hell bent on this? I have been in too many conversations with people who are truly broken because of being cheated on, too many conversations with people who have no self esteem, because they have been lied to and taken advantage of, and I don’t want to contribute to that. I`d be lying if I said I have been perfect in the past(though I have never ever cheated and never ever will), but I`m stuck in my old fashioned ways because after the fun and partying gets old you get to a point where you realize there is more to life than parties and sex…

The average life expectancy of a human in the united states is 78 years, and alot of people consider themselves out of their “prime” between 30 and 40. This means that over half your life is going to be spent not being in your physical prime. When you get to that point, and you aren’t that sexy hot thang you were in college, then what? What will be your selling point? Why will people want to spend time with you? What will make you happy?

If you don’t want to spend the second half of your life alone in miserable I suggest you learn to take a different approach sooner than later…..