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How to Be a Gentleman Revised & Updated: A Contemporary Guide to Common Courtesy [Hardcover]

John Bridges
3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (36 customer reviews)
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Book Description

Jan. 3 2012 Gentlemanners

Being a gentleman isn’t just being a nice guy, or aconsiderate guy, or the type of guy someone might take home to meet their mother.A gentleman realizes that he has the unique opportunity to distinguish himself fromthe rest of the crowd. He knows when an email is appropriate, and when nothingless than a handwritten note will do. He knows how to dress on the golf course,in church, and at a party. He knows how to breeze through an airport withoutthe slightest fumble of his carry-on or boarding pass. And those conversationalicebreakers—“Where do I know you from?” A gentleman knows better.Gentlemanliness is all in the details, and John Bridges is reclaiming the ideathat men—gentlemen—can be extraordinary in every facet of their lives.


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How to Be a Gentleman Revised & Updated: A Contemporary Guide to Common Courtesy + 50 Things Every Young Gentleman Should Know Revise: What to Do, When to Do It, & Why
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Product Details


Product Description

About the Author

John Bridges, author of How to Be a Gentleman, is also the coauthor, with Bryan Curtis, of seven other volumes in the best-selling GentleManners series. He is a frequent guest on television and radio news programs, always championing gentlemanly behavior in modern society. Bridges has appeared on the Today Show, the Discovery Channel, and CBS Sunday Morning, and has been profiled in People magazine and the New York Times.

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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index
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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Truly a mixed bag.... Feb. 2 2001
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
This book has some real pros and some real cons. The *majority* of the advice given is practical, no nonsense etiquette. For this reason I would heartily recommend this publication to a gentleman looking to improve upon such areas in his life. There are other books however that he should supplement his learning, in my opinion.
Now, having said that, there are some glaring problems w/ this book.
I.) The suggestion that a man should NEVER turn down an invitation is nuts. The author gave the reader the out in the event of illness or death in the family. Come on, there are times, for whatever reason, that you have to respectfully decline.
2.) Drink beer from a CAN!?! How did that slip in there? First, at a truly formal occasion you simply don't suck down the suds. At any other occasion it is more than acceptable, but how hard is it to put it in a glass? Drinking beer from a can in your living room by yourself (or w/ your wife) after a long hard week, sure that's fine, but elsewhere drink from a glass.
3.) There is one point that states simply, "If a gentleman can afford to do so, he should have someone else clean his home." Why? There is a fine line between snobbery and etiquette and this crossed it. If it said if the man and his wife are to busy to keep a house clean, then that would make a lot of practical sense. Otherwise, it's a waste.
4.) The other gives the reader full liberty to not wear socks in many occasions, but says w/o question he must wear a undershirt. Though I live in the North and always wear the two aforementioned articles, I could see why a gentleman from Dixie would not want to wear an undershirt during the summer. Socks are a must, IMHO.
5.) The quib about always bringing condoms was both out of place and inappropriate in my opinion. Such sexual matters are both personal and vary depending on a gentleman's religious background. It didn't belong in this book.
Good day.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars A child's book Nov. 6 2003
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
This book was misrepresented by Amazon as a book on how to be a gentleman, yet it simply a book full of short verses, but instead of reading sayings from the Bible saying Thou shall not, it reads as though an irritating Grandmother is scolding a teenager. I broke the book open at random to give two examples of the nonsense, "A gentleman always shares his umbrella" and "In warm weather a gentleman always wears an undershirt". I think most men, at least I did, buy a book like this to get the latest in style, how to handle ackward conversations, how to work a crowd, the proper behavior when attending funerals, weddings, etc.. My copy of this book is going into the trash, because a gentlemen wouldn't insult his friends by giving it to them.
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2.0 out of 5 stars A Gentleman's Guide to Common Courtesy Feb. 21 2002
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
I bought this book, then promptly returned it a few days later. If the information was worth the price, I most certainly would have kept it. As a few other reviewers have mentioned, 90% of the information is common sense. The other 10% is no real surprise either.
Unfortunatly, the majority of the book consists of 1 line advice. "A gentleman does this. A gentleman never does this" etc.
While the description says you will learn how to order a bottle of wine, it is glossed over quickly. It explains the theatre of wine presentation, but fails to give any simple recommendations regarding what types of wine are recommended for different foods and occasions.
Here's the advice from "A gentleman goes to the opera". Turn your cell phone ringer off and don't leave your seat. Oh, and don't applaud until you are sure a set is completed.
The author recommends not being the first to arrive at a party and not being more than 15 minutes late. In my opinion, a gentleman is never late, period.
In short, try to find a general etiquette book. I am sure that many who are attracted to a book of this type are interested in acting as a gentleman as to distinguish themselves for the opposite sex. Look elsewhere.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Bridges points the way to civilized manliness Aug. 20 2001
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
I grew up in typical middle-class America, where fine dinners and operas weren't a part of my everyday experience. My catholic school education instilled manners in me, but when I moved to a more cosmopolitan environment and became more social, I realized that "please/thank you" manners weren't enough. I was polite, but I lacked etiquette. Bridges' book took me a long way toward changing that.
Bridges showed me how awkwardly I made introductions and handled myself at the dinner table. Armed with his advice, I now introduce people more smoothly and facilitate an ice-breaker conversation (something I used to overlook). I now handle social dinners with grace and don't get flustered when I see my plate flanked by numerous specialized utensils, and I've noticed acknowledging glances from friends - especially female ones.
Thank you notes are another good tip. Since reading How To Be a Gentleman, I've started sending casual thank you notes via E-mail after a night out. I at first wondered if this would come across as stuffy, but these short "had a great time see you soon" notes have proven to be the perfect icing for friendships.
I especially liked Bridges' examples of what to say - and what not to say - in certain situations. We've all put our foot in our mouth and spoke without thinking first. Bridges offers good advice for avoiding these situations.
Bridges occasionally sounds starchy, such as when he says that "if the salad fork is in the wrong place [the gentleman] does not make a scene." This might sound condescending, but some people might get a little pretentious with their newfound gentleman's status. I thought it was appropriate for Bridges to throw in an occasional ego check along the way.
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Interesting and informative
I breezed through this book in a couple of hours. It's got some great tips and is never dull. Short little one-liners throughout.
Published on April 1 2010 by Sam Ribtor
3.0 out of 5 stars A mixed bag
A portion of the book is common sense, a portion gives practical guidelines for entertaining, a portion is about consideration for others and a portion is simply archaic or... Read more
Published on April 9 2004 by S. Andersen
5.0 out of 5 stars Practical, Succinct Advice
What it means to be a "gentlemen" is always a matter of opinion. But John Bridges offers us a well-balanced path, addressing most areas of life in a brief 150 page book... Read more
Published on April 6 2004 by Edward J. Vasicek
2.0 out of 5 stars A simple book.
A couple of interesting details here and there, a simple reference book for the occasional gentleman.
Published on Dec 2 2003
4.0 out of 5 stars Quick Read...
The biggest complaint people have against books on etiquette and manners is that most of what's in them is common sense. Read more
Published on Nov. 4 2003 by Scott E. Allen
5.0 out of 5 stars An excellent primer
In an increasingly uncivilised world its nice to see that there are more of us who wish to engage in civility. Read more
Published on Oct. 14 2003 by Jay M. Lutsky
5.0 out of 5 stars Contemporary Common Sense
This book is wonderful at seeing beyond the minutiae of ordinary books on etiquette, and cutting to the core of what is truly useful in daily life.
Published on Sept. 9 2003 by Matthew Ford
4.0 out of 5 stars an aspiring gentleman's view...
This book has its problems, to be sure, but the truth of the matter is that 85% (at least) of "How To Be A Gentleman : A Contemporary Guide to Common Courtesy" is usable,... Read more
Published on May 27 2003 by Steven Swain
4.0 out of 5 stars A handy guide for the contemporary gentleman
This is the sort of book interesting only to those people serious about self-perfection. The book offers easy and handy tips for how to behave as a gentleman -- and far from the... Read more
Published on Aug. 21 2002 by John H. Teeple
1.0 out of 5 stars Foolish beyond belief
Although there are a few bits of useful information spinkled herein, they are inconsistent. Much of the "information" appears to be directed to barbarians (e.g. Read more
Published on June 1 2002 by capefearcinema
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