Chivalry Is Dead. Pick Up The Flag.

So, a couple of days ago I’m hanging out with two female friends of mine in this bar that has an outdoor area with no regulation…

By no regulation, I mean we’re all dependent upon each other’s sense of decency and self-awareness not to end up invading someone else’s personal space.

The layout lends itself to people moving chairs around and reconfiguring the layout of the small tables. It’s not like a rigidly set up rank and file of seats and tables.

Setup

So I’m sitting in a corner spot. Nobody’s going to get my space unless they sit down right next to me, which isn’t going to happen. One of the gals is sitting to my right on a corner bench space 90 degrees to my right, so it’s the same deal for her. The other one’s sitting to my left in a chair which is perfectly lined up with our small table, so basically, we’re perfectly lining three of the four sides of a small square table.

There was space between us and the next table because a) the tables are so small that people would be IN your conversation if they were placed together, and b) people need to have space so they can get out to hit the bar or the bathroom.

The table next to us had a chair that was directly lined up with it and left space for a) the walkway between the tables, and b) the chick who was sitting in the chair lined up with our table to have a comfortable amount of space between her and whomever might have sat down at the next table.

Situation

So this group shows up, which I believe was two chicks and a dude, and they decide to populate that particular table. The gals sit on the bench, and there’s lots of space between them and my friend sitting on that side. Fine.

On the “chair side” of things… Right before these three had shown up, the gal to my left had gotten up to pick up the next round from the bar. The guy that sat at the next table over failed to account for the personal space of whomever might have been sitting in the chair at my table and naturally and effortlessly slid his chair over right next to her chair, sat down and started talking to his girlfriends…..

So I tell this guy “Excuse me. Someone’s sitting right there.”, pointing to the chair that was going to be re-occupied by my friend. He thought I meant HIS chair and said “sorry” and was getting up, but I told him “No, you’re fine there. I’m saying that she’s sitting in THIS chair right here.”, pointing to the chair at my table. He slides his chair over and makes the curious statement “Oh… I’m ok”. ????? This is when I knew this was going to be a problem in the near future. Nobody asked him if HE was ok. The point I was making was that he was encroaching on MY FRIEND’S personal space, and it was clear that he didn’t understand what I was saying, but I wanted to see how it played out.

So she comes back with the drinks, and I see her give a look like “How come this guy’s sitting so close to my position, but she doesn’t say anything, and there actually was space enough for her to comfortably sit where she had been this whole time before these people arrived. The three of us pick up our conversation and everything’s cool, but I’m keeping an eye on this dude, who hasn’t moved his chair, but his back is angled towards my friend…

Event

Maybe 30 minutes later, another guy shows up to hang out with that guy and the two girls. This turned out to be what I was waiting for this whole time, because there CLEARLY wasn’t enough space for him to fit between the guy sitting next to my friend and the people at the table on the other side of them. I KNEW, automatically, that the guy I already spoke to was going to have to move over. He had two ways to do it. He could have LOOKED, like an intelligent, aware person, or he could have decided to move without looking. Of course, this is what he did.

So, looking in the direction of his homeboy, AWAY from the direction of my table, he picks his chair up, scoots to his right, slams himself literally shoulder-to-shoulder with the chick that’s sitting at my table, and is smiling and talking to his friend that’s starting to sit down in the space he’s created as if everything’s lovely.

Since I had already known this was going to happen, I was ready to view my friend’s response, which was a look of horror, then a realization that he was perfectly comfortble being shoulder-to-shoulder with her, an assessment of what to do, and then she moves her chair towards me so she’s now taking up 3/4 of our table and he’s taking up 1/4 of OUR table, and she makes herself ok with that and continues our conversation.

Nope.

So I’m not really sure what I said to this dude, because I was really pretty HEATED at this point, but it was something to the effect of “HEY!!!” ๐Ÿ˜€

At that point, it was like the record scratched and everything went dead silent. The two girls at his table had stopped running their mouths and were staring at me. He turned around and looked at me and his homeboy that had just showed up was looking at me. I don’t know what the chick to my left was doing, but my friend to my right was tapping away on her Blackberry, because she knows ‘how I do’.

So, these four people are now in suspended animation and I’m staring at this dude that I had already explained the situation to during the very SECOND that he sat down, and I go “See that?… I TOLD YOU she was sitting there!”

This is where it was completely silent again, because I was giving him the opportunity to recognize what I had said, recognize that he was now a member of *MY* table, and say something to the effect of “Sorry” or “My Bad” and move back over where HIS space was. Nothing. Suspended animation. So I had to continue…

“NOW, you’ve invaded her personal space!” I pause again, because I’ve relayed all the information he needs in order to make the right decision.

So now, dude looks at where he’s sitting, looks at the fact that my friend has had to MOVE in order to get away from his encroachment, says that kind of “sorry” that means “I’m sorry you’re SUCH A JERK” instead of “I’m sorry I lost track of my own personal space and disrespected your female friend”, and moves back over where he’s supposed to be so my friend can take her proper position at our table.

I tell him something like “Thank you. I appreciate it”, which I did, because he could have gone the “**** you! I’m gonna sit wherever I want” route, which isn’t what anybody wanted to happen. Also, his homegirls could have started running their mouths and started a beef FOR him as chicks are prone to do. That didn’t happen either.

There were no more issues that evening. The guy was aware of what was going on and when my friend on the bench got up to go to the bar, he moved from blocking the aisle to allow her through without having to squeeze by. When we were leaving, the guy and I said “Good Night” to each other and that was that.

The Issue

Now, I didn’t have a problem with this guy at all. The issue was that his lack of self-awareness became disrespectful to me, as I had told him as soon as he arrived that my friend was sitting there, and he ended up bumping into her, staying there and not apologizing to her at all for screwing up. My goal was to MAKE HIM AWARE that he was screwing up so he could do the right thing on his own.

I never told him what to do. I’m not his father. I’m not the bouncer at that bar. At the same time, if a female friend is hanging out with me, I take the responsibility upon myself to ensure she has the best time possible. In that capacity, as long as the chick is behaving herself (not acting like an ASS and causing problems), if someone encroaches upon her space, he’s encroaching on my space. This is why I informed him about the situation as soon as he arrived. If he had a problem (which this particular guy didn’t), he could have said so right off the bat, before she even came back with the drinks. If his stance was going to be “Screw you and your homegirls, I’m gonna do whatever I want”, I needed to know that sooner rather than later so the situation could play itself out…

Chivalry

Chivalry[1] is a term related to the medieval institution of knighthood. It is usually associated with ideals of knightly virtues, honor and courtly love. The word is derived from the French word chevalier, indicating one who rides a horse (Fr. cheval).

Today, the terms chivalry and chivalrous are used to describe courteous behavior, especially that of men towards women.”

Chivalry is Dead. You can either leave it that way or pick up the flag and represent it within your small corner of the universe.

I’ll tell you this much… If you don’t represent it, you’re gonna get lumped in with the vast majority of guys that have ZERO CLASS WHATSOEVER, and it’s gonna make it that much harder for you to distinguish yourself amongst the women in your life as well as the women you meet on the fly.

If it’s clear that valor isn’t a natural part of your genetic makeup, women are going to treat you accordingly. There’s nothing “wrong” with having no desire to make sure that women are comfortable when they spend time with you.. It’s just that you’re going to be regarded as one of the girls.

Decisions

Biologically, if you take it back to the caveman days, ๐Ÿ™‚ women subconsciously crave good genes, provision (food, shelter, etc.) and physical security. In 2009, you don’t have to provide the actual security yourself, because that’s what the cops and bouncers are for. They get paid to make sure people are civil towards each other. I guarantee you, however, that whether she consciously understands it or not, if a chick doesn’t feel safe when she spends time with you, it’s going to be incredibly detrimental to your rap.

OTOH… If you’re just not that type to do anything about it when you or a chick you’re with is disrespected, I suggest that you keep your mouth SHUT! ๐Ÿ˜€ Better than that, if you perceive a situation that you’re not willing to stand up for… Exit. Quickly. Check, Please! ๐Ÿ˜€

Like I said before, there’s nothing wrong with feeling like if a chick’s with you, she’s on her own as far as whether guys want to step on her, push her around, harass her on the bathroom line and generally act like you don’t exist. Some women like that even better and would rather that you STFU while they handle their own physical business. I’m sure that guy got points from his speechless girlfriends for not saying something smart-assed when I told him what time it was. I’m not sure he was INTERESTED in what they thought, but my point is that how you carry yourself is on YOU.

You’re going to be judged by women on how you carry yourself. You’re going to gain or lose points by whether they see you as a barbarian, a troublemaker, a pacifist or a ***** and your ability to gain favor with them is going to depend on this. Meanwhile, and way more importantly… You’re gonna have to be comfortable and satisfied with *YOURSELF* when you look back on your own actions or lack thereof.

~Bill Cammack | @BillCammack

2 thoughts on “Chivalry Is Dead. Pick Up The Flag.”

  1. ABSO-EFFING-LUTELY! I dont care if she is the neighborhood hoe, the girlfriends BF you cant stand, or some possible conquest you just met… The level of respect you command is exactly that, the level YOU command. One of the first things females tend to “respect” in a male is their ability to feel safe or at the very least YOUR ability to handle/address a situation. Theres a notion that “if I eat we all eat and if I drink we all drink” pretty much is all that is needed for a succesful evening. I have always reminded (implored) my friends that more is needed. If I have some pull here, we all have some pull. If my presence commands some respect, then we all command the same. Any female who happens to be with us should also feel all the “love” and should have no reason to doubt her decision to even have been with us/me. Its not about being on a date, its just the thought that by extension and association my immediate “space” requires the same consideration you would give me. Its not an ownership type of thing as I dont own anyone in my group BUT “thick as thieves” should mean something, after all you are only as strong as your weakest link!
    BILL: you did what you did and my hats off to you. Not enough people take into account those with them at any given moment!

    1. Thanks man. I know *you* know how it is, haha ๐Ÿ˜€

      I benefitted greatly from the “team” aspect of hanging out. I don’t know any other way to live, nor would I want to.

      There are too many people now that hang out with people they don’t care about at all. You can call it PTSD, but I’m always on the lookout for someone doing the wrong thing. All you need is one incident to throw your entire evening off.

      The funny/unfunny part of it is that the chick that got displaced was very used to being treated like that. She looked at him, didn’t say jack and moved over, because there happened to be some space to move over. Never mind that now she’s not sitting perpendicular to her own part of the table, but off on an angle. Never mind that this dude that’s NOT at our table is now taking up part of our space. She’s very used to “eating” that. So, even though I would have been mentally & subconsciously penalized for letting her get pushed around, she wouldn’t actually have noticed it. Life was regular to her. This is what happens. People run into her and she moves.

      She was probably actually uncomfortable with the fact that I brought the situation up to the dude. After all, she hadn’t been there when he first arrived and I informed her that he needed to watch out for the personal space of the person that was going to be sitting there. As far as she was concerned, we had never spoken to each other. The fact of the matter was that I had expressed myself already and he had heard me. He should never have run into her at all, because he should have been paying attention to what I had said… Not because I’m a cop or a bouncer, but because HIS OPPORTUNITY to disrespect what I was saying was right when I told it to him. If he wasn’t going to respect what I said, the problem should have occurred when I informed him where his space ended and mine (by extension, through my homegirl) began.

      Again, the situation was an error. It wasn’t the guy being a jerk. The fact remains that his blunder was going to affect me in my “relationship” to both gals, going forward. The fact is that I took the proper steps to avoid what eventually happened by letting him know what time it was when he got there.

      In the future, he would have been some nobody that inconvenienced her. Meanwhile, I would have been her so-called friend that let some dude press up on her position without doing/saying anything about it = I lose.

      Too many dudes want to shirk their responsibilities and still expect to collect respect. It doesn’t work like that. Whether she tells you or not and whether she notices or not, it’s going on your personal record & resume. If you send that chick off to walk 10 blocks home on her own in the middle of the night in Manhattan, that goes on your record.

      Put her in a cab or if you have to, walk her to her house and keep trying the door to her apartment until you’re sure her drunk ass locked herself in properly. THEN you get to go home.

      Carry The Flag.

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