All Gentlemen Are Men But Not All Men Are Gentlemen

Sepia photo of men on the porch of a forest cabin.Reading what I write you can reasonably come to the conclusion that I believe a man must be genteel and refined, but that’s not the case. The truth is a man must have certain blue collar traits. In fact, it’s easier for our dirty and callous handed brothers to be men than the more delicate among us. Today I’m going to explore the difference between boys and blue collar men as well as the distinction of gentlemen and men. 

Unlike manliness, gentlemanliness can be turned off and on at will. It’s never an inherent part of who you are. It may take quite a lot of effort to develop initially but it can then be suspended when the need arises. Gentlemanliness is about etiquette, poise, and class, all optional in less refined company. Manliness is about taking on the hard jobs, doing the physical work, and defending and caring for others, none of which require refinement. 

As I’ve said before, a male who is not a man is a boy. Thus, a boy is by definition lacking in manliness. The difference between a boy and a crude man is that the man knows when to introduce gentlemanliness into his mannerisms. For example, no man would ever leer at a woman or otherwise reduce her to nothing more than a potential object of sexual pleasure. He acknowledges that a lady is a nuanced creature, with not only erotic potential but also the potential to be intellectual, artistic, and nurturing. More importantly, a man never attempts to exercise rights while rejecting the responsibilities that go along with them. 

That’s it, making the transition from boy to man doesn’t automatically make you a gentleman but it’s always worth pursuing. If you familiarise yourself with gentlemanly behaviours you can leave boorishness where it belongs, in the company of other men. If you’d rather avoid the refined world with its operas and cocktail parties, then all you need is the ability to not look the fool when it’s forced on you. 

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