Magazine article The Spectator

Dear Mary

Magazine article The Spectator

Dear Mary

Article excerpt


Q. I am in a similar position to your correspondent R.T. (14 February), since I was awarded a CB which is, of course, quite hard to distinguish in conversation from CBE as so many people tend to slur the 'B' of 'CB'. How can I, without appearing vain, point out to those who make this understandable mistake that I am a member of the superior order? E.D.G. Calne, Wiltshire

A. You might comment, `It's rather interesting, actually. CB is a different order the Bath rather than the British Empire.' This somewhat gnomic response is likely to excite enquiries and your display of mastery of an arcane field should rob your remonstrance of any degree of vanity.

Q. My wife is in the habit of closing her eyes just at the moment when I click the shutter on our camera. It means that virtually every photograph in which she features is rendered ineligible for inclusion in our album. How can I cure her of this irritating habit? C.B., Suffolk

A. Punish your wife by sticking the photographs in anyway. Glue on open eyes from celebrities in magazines like Hello! on top of your wife's closed eyelids. This will soon teach her to concentrate when you issue your photographic commands.

Q. Last weekend, when staying with friends, I asked them if they had a daily woman for whom I should leave a tip. They replied that they did not have a daily woman. `So don't leave a tip.' The following night I stayed with another friend, of senior social experience to me, who admonished me, saying it is bad form to enquire whether someone has a daily woman, you leave a tip anyway. …

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