Wednesday, 13 July 2011

The Fancy Death of Formality

H is a big believer in the “death of formality.” What exactly does that mean? I believe he referring to what he perceives is an overall decline in strict dress codes, 8 course dinners and the freedom with which we call each other by our first name. I suppose in a way he is right; after all I don’t leave a calling card when I stop by the neighbour’s house nor do I insist on my domestic help wearing uniforms. Yes that is true, all my employees wear exactly what they want to work. I know, I’m so gracious.

Anyway, if you so much as mention “dressing up” or “black tie” to H, he almost goes into fits.

“That’s stupid!” he cries.

“Bullshit I’m wearing a coat with tails!” he clamors.

Even at our own wedding he very nearly succeeded in avoiding a tuxedo. There were some threats, some phone calls and several hotel employees throwing him into the back of a black car destined for some South American tuxedo shoppe involved in that one.

If we go to a restaurant that requires a jacket, H takes great delight in watching the Maitre’d go scrounging around in the closet for a “loaner” that will fit him. (He has eaten dinner more times than I care to count squeezed into a blazer that looks more like a sausage casing than a coat, but hey, that’s his privilege.)

So you get what I’m saying. Tell H to wear something other than exactly what he feels like wearing at that exact moment and you are bound to witness a tantrum.

But last night he took it to a new low. Seriously. I don’t know how much further down he could actually go.

We had a friend over for dinner, a lovely pal who is near and dear to our hearts (and was closely involved in that South American black car incident) and who was gracious enough to carry H’s new suit over from the US. (It fit!!!!!) After all the necessary hugging and exclaims of delight (“How was your flight?! Missed you!”), he handed H a hanging bag.

H proceeded to remove his trousers right there in the living room. He tried on his suit and after relief and happiness all around, handed it back to me.

But he left his trousers on the floor.

And the proceeded to spend the rest of the evening sitting around in his undies, moving from sofa to dining table, glass of wine in hand, Hugo Boss snug cotton boxers flashing out from under his shirt with every breath.

"Ah, he doesn't care! Do you?" he asked our guest when I made mention of the situation.

And that, folks, is truly The Death of Formality.

By the way, speaking of politeness, catch me over at In The Powder Room today. Just a little ode to the customer service centre at British Telecom.


  1. Men! they are worse than children when it comes to throwing tantrums.
    I've tagged you for an award

  2. At least they were snug boxers and the fancy crown jewels weren't on show.

  3. At least he didn't have his hand down his boxers (at least I'm assuming he didn't!).

    Congratulations on the award :) xx

  4. He'd get on well with my new neighbours, 'The Nakeds.' they are in their kitchen drinking wine and having dinner in their knickers almost every night. I'm thinking of sending them blinds anonymously....

  5. oooh, i love it - the freedom of it - brilliant!

    by the way - my husband didn't wear a tie at our wedding - i did not mind because to me he looked fabulous, but almost every other member of our wedding party guests commented, and some offended!

  6. Ha ha...Brilliant! Sounds like something my hubby would do! x

  7. I'm thinking I'm torn between dying to come over for dinner and not.

  8. Oh Mac, Nel, you have no idea how grateful I am that Fancy PA and I just recently cleaned out his underwear drawer and filled it with all brand new pairs. So grateful...

  9. Sure, it's hypocritical, but it's also amazing and funny. Clearly he is my type of fellow, if you noticed the 'some husbands id like to have' post of mine. maybe he was just trying to be cool a la tom cruise in risky business...

  10. Our husbands would get along fabulously. My hubby is at the Microsoft conference all week and when he put on a tie the first day he wrenched it off in extreme anger saying that he is NOT going to wear the shitty thing.

    He wore the shitty thing anyway. Just as I expected him to

  11. I'm sorry but invited or not I'm coming over for dinner if I'm ever in the UK, because, seriously, dining with a Fancy Husband in his Fancy Boxers just went on my Life List.

  12. Be thankful his friend didn't join in...

  13. Come - we'll drink wine in our knickers.

  14. har. We have a lot in common, I do believe.

  15. Moomser, thank you for making me a bucket list item! But as Lexie, says, we need to make sure no one else is tempted to join in.

  16. Your mouth to God's ears. Amen.