November 19, 2001
How many of you have, week upon week, thought to yourselves, "Goodness gracious me, I wish I could write in to Sir Charles Grandiose with my petty little problems"? Yet writing to Sir Charles is not an intimidating experience. Why, even an idiot can do it--and most do.
It is for the faint of heart that we present this little exercise.
Grandiose Enterprises, Ltd, presents
The Choose Your Own Sir Charles Grandiose Adventure!
Dear Sir Charles,
I am writing you today
For yet another fortnight, one remains,
O Vaunted One:
I am but a lowly man of lowly birth. Yet I strive to conduct myself with the manners of a gentleman. My fingernails are relatively impeccable, once I've scraped them through my canine teeth, and on Sundays, I wear a cravat, and also employ toilet tissue.
My question is this: were I to arrive at your manor, of a Sunday early, wearing my cravat, fingernails glittering with spittle in the morning sun, and with but minimal drippage alongst my pantlegs, would you deign to invite me to breakfast?
Further, were I to acquit myself at breakfast as a gentleman does, keeping my gaseous eruptions to a minimum, would you adopt me into your grand family? Would you grant me a splendid weekly allowance (of, say, one million pounds), and recommend to the Queen that I myself be knighted?
This, sir, is my fondest dream. Like you, I am appalled that mere Beatles and Scotsmen have been knighted, in recent years. So why not me? After all, with a million pound weekly allowance, I could begin using toilet tissue throughout the weekends, and even consider occasional bathing.
Yr. Obt. Hble. Srvt.,
Sir Charles replies:
From the muddy soup of amoebas beneath the sky of a new and brutal world crawled the zygotes that, through centuries of evolution, became the small-legged creature that pulled itself from the primordial oceans onto dry land, eventually becoming the small furry mammals that developed into mankind's earliest ancestors.
From dark caves into the sunlight slunk Cro Magnon man, just as modern man pulled himself through times of famine and plague--all to better himself. What more natural impulse can there be, than the impulse to make for oneself and one's descendants a better life?
However. One would advise not counting that splendid weekly allowance just yet, Mr. Scuzpuddle. Our forebearers might have all tottered from the same muddy amoebic pool, but one's own zygotes no doubt basked in the metaphoric French Riviera, whereas yours slopped around Skegness.
With a discreet shooing motion, one remains,
Sir Percy writes:
My Dear Sir Charles,
How exactly should one's valet behave?
I am concerned that mine may be crossing the bounds of propriety and discipline. Also, what are the proper means of correcting this behavior? I don't want to dismiss the poor fellow; he's only fifteen.
Sir Charles replies:
Ah, Sir Percy,
Like Olympic athletes, proper valets begin their training at a very young age.
It is not uncommon to find them, at the tender age of two, attending classes in the creation of hangover remedies. By the age of five they are most usually experts in the various knots of the cravat. By seven they are able to take whiskey stains out of virtually any fabric, are conversant in translating slurred proper English, and can clench their buttocks so firmly that without looking, they are able to squat down and pick up the ace of spades from a deck spread out upon the floor.
One's point, old chap, is that at fifteen it may be already too late for the lad. Toss back the tiddler and hire a new one.
Advising one's old chum to avoid any candidates with the name of Scuzpuddle, one remains,
Dear Lady Felicia,
I have a bit of problem.
I am a happily married man who has taken a fancy to dressing as a maid and doing housework around the
What is worse:
The moral aspect, the senseless folly of it, or the sheer breach of class lines?
What is your opinion?
The Lady Felicia replies:
My dear Annafrid,
I marvel: A man who does the housework? Small wonder your marriage is happy.
It is a solution for which I have sought long, and hard. One's husband, dear though he may be in theory, has such dreadful difficulty restraining himself from 'assisting' the maids as they go about their duties. If he was wearing the maid's uniform, it may be that at least he would keep his hands to himself.
I suspect it would cut down on the finger-sniffing, as well.
Serenely, one remains,