the verysmart guide to 21st century chivalry

***the following is portion of a chapter from the upcoming Your Degrees Won’t Keep You Warm at Night: The Very Smart Brothas Guide to Meeting, Dating, Mating, and Fighting Crime***

for many of us, the concept of chivalry died years ago, neglected so long that it ended up gaunt and emaciated, starving to death outside of a KFC because no one could spare him the big piece of chicken.

well, the champ is here to say that we’re wrong. chivalry isn’t dead or even dying…just in need of a bit of a makeover. an update. a reboot. a few minor tweaks and adjustments for the 21st century.

1. men still should always pay for (at least) the first three dates

it doesn’t matter if the guy’s a grad student working at starbucks dating a CPA making 80k a year. if he approached her and they’re dating, the man should always cover at least the first three dates.

this may seem a bit antiquated, but this universal rule actually benefits both parties. if she’s really into him, she won’t mind the fact that the first couple of dates have been at borders, the cheese dog stand at the arts festival, and the sample soup counter at giant eagle. if she does mind the limited spending dates, that’s all the proof he needs that she’s probably not the woman for him. see how easy that works? it’s not rocket surgery and sh*t

2. if a woman, any woman, is within 15-20 feet of a man and approaching the same door you he is, he must always attempt to open it and let her walk through first, even if you’re coming from an awkward angle.

if she’s within 20-40 feet and walking at a pace which insures that she’ll be at the same door you’re about to enter within 7-10 seconds, you can walk through the door first, but you must hold the door for her.

this is pretty non-negotiable. any man who doesn’t open doors for women, and doesn’t wait as a human doorstop for a woman that’s less than ten seconds away from the door sounds like a diva dude. sure, there are extenuating circumstances (you have crutches, you really, really have to pee, she’s running from the cops, etc) but this is another one of rules that will never change.

plus, as an added bonus, there’s no better way of getting a really, really good clear booty peek. women always seem to jiggle the hips a little extra whenever a door’s being held open for them. i think it’s some form of a primitive mating mechanism actually, some evolutionary correlation between held doors, jiggled hips, and ovaries, but i really have no idea.

in the rare case that you happen to come across some woman who feels as if any male holding a door for her is a symptom of 200 years of western oppression, patriarchy, and male privilege, do shrug your shoulders and continue to hold the door. and, even though you might be tempted, don’t pat her on the head when she walks by.

there’s really only one instance where you probably should treat lightly, and that’s when she’s with another man who looks as if it might be HER man.

door opening now can be tricky because it basically shows the other man up, visibly usurping one of his most important roles. you don’t want to cause some poor stranger any unnecessary anguish. he doesn’t need to hear “what, some stranger can open the door for me and your lazy ass cant??? maybe I should have given him the shower quickie this morning instead of you!!!” when he gets home.

remember fellas, happy woman means happy man, and happy men means less crime.

3. always volunteer to sleep in the “wet spot”

why? Because making her the one who always has to lay down to sleep in the spot on the bed where you just finished having sex is a sure-fire way to ensure that her spot won’t be too wet for too much longer.

along with “walk on the side closest to the curb, even though if a car does actually jump the curb, it’s probably going to kill you both anyway” this is one of those you just have to take for the team. its all about the greater good and sh*t

4. always let women within 10 feet of you go first in elevators, buses, cabs, etc, etc

this is also a great time to watch women’s behinds. you see, there are ways to appreciate women’s figures without doing the piss-boy pirouette, and chivalry actually allows for many of them. nothing beats watching a nice pair of hips walk up a few city bus stairs.

i’m actually beginning to think that chivalry is just a convoluted system devised for men to look at as much ass as possible. underneath all of those layers of clothing and armor, those damn knights and maidens must have been a bunch of freaks.

5. the man should always be the first one to change his status to “In a relationship” on facebook or any other social networking websites.

you see, her friends probably pay more attention to that stuff than your friends are going to, which means they’re much more likely to give her hell for changing her status before you changed yours than your friends would. plus, when a woman does that first, it usually screams “My name is Ation. Desper Ation”, and you don’t want to put her in that position.

subsequently, unless it was a particularly foul “she slept with my bipolar teammate” type of break-up, the man should probably also wait until his ex has changed her status back to single before he does

6. a man can never say “please” and “thank you” too much, except in the bedroom, where they should be given the condiment treatment: Best used with light sprinkles

the bedroom in itself is a paradox where the common rules of chivalry don’t exist. for instance, saying “please” during a sexual act is a bit tricky because “please” accompanies a request. depending on his disposition, body language, and penis size, “please” could be interpreted as “a playful request lightening the mood”, “a considerate lover”, or “an annoyingly desperate dude who should just shut the f*ck up and be happy that his cornball ass is getting some”

there’s basically no in-between, no gray area with this, exactly why he needs to be absolutely sure about the nature of their sexual relationship before he continues with the “pleases”. usually in these situations, a slight nudge or eye contact is all that’s needed to get his point across, whatever it happens to be.

also, the appropriateness of “thank you” is just as dependant on the situation

a) after finishing a very fulfilling tryst with your lover, you kiss her, lay flat on your back, and say “thanks baby” while you’re both still laying there, catching your breath, enjoying that post-sex hazy silence, and reflecting about the entire experience.

in this case, the “thank you” enhanced the level of intimacy, two lovers letting each other know that the act which just occurred was greatly valued and appreciated, a stark contrast from…

b) right after finishing a fulfilling tryst with a lover, you remove yourself from inside of her, jump out the bed, say “thanks babe” and hop in the shower before she’s even moved a muscle.

in this case, the “thank you” completely disengages the situation of all intimacy, treating the act as if it should be accompanied by a credit card swipe and receipt coming out of her ass. i understand that all sex isn’t going to be love-making, but it still is sex. it’s not like she just made you a grilled-cheese sandwich.

7. don’t bullsh*t the chivalry Gods.

men, don’t break your neck to open doors for every Zoe Saldana you see but refuse to give up your seat for the slightly homely chick with the eclectic face on the train carrying 90 textbooks

on the same token, women should always acknowledge a chivalrous act. it could be a smile or a “thank you” or a slight head nod or head an “accidental” cleavage peak…anything as long as it lets the guy know that his efforts haven’t been in vain. if you see a guy doing the doorstop thing for you, the very least you can do is make an effort to sped up your walk so it doesn’t seem like he’s standing there waiting for the seasons to change in the time it takes your inconsiderate ass to get to the door.

there you go young grasshoppers. go on now and make the champ proud

—the champ

[***Admin Note: On June 3rd in New York City, The Champ will be on a panel with a few other "relationship experts" to talk about relationships, love, sex, and all that other good stuff, and he'd greatly appreciate your support. Go to moderndaymatchmaker.eventbrite.com for more details.

Also, if you're planning on attending, please buy your tickets with the promotional code "VSB" to receive a 20% discountTickets are almost sold out, so it's probably not the best idea to wait for the last minute to purchase. Thanks!***]