cultural capital

The ‘Times’ Brings the Bitchitude (Sort of) in New Etiquette Column

This past weekend the Times “Style” section unveiled its new etiquette advice column, “Social Q’s.” In its debut, the column took on everything from tennis bullies to a boss’ guerilla pedicure tactics to people who invite gays to dinner parties only to tell them how wrong gay marriage is. The answers are cute, smart, and a little bit bitchy. Social Q’s — it’s just like us! We especially like the sharp admonishment of a gentile who met her boyfriend on JDate posing as a Jew and still hasn’t gotten up the courage to tell him she’s not a member of the tribe. The advice columnist lightly bitch-slaps:

Remember, you’ll be one short step away from “freak show” when you finally come clean, and you still must convince him that the lie was an aberration. He may be furious, or decide you’re too manipulative to date, but there’s a chance he’ll be flattered by the lengths you went to win him over.

Sassy! But who is our feisty new advice columnist, Philip Galanes? According to our extensive research (translation: plugging his name into the Times’ search engine), our Galanes has been quoted in the Gray Lady quite a bit over the years. He wrote a few small articles back in 1985 but, most recently, has found himself on the other side of the paper. The NYT has profiled Galanes and his partner no less than three times: once in 2000 when they were renovating their apartment, then in 2004 when the paper followed their search for an East Hampton love nest, and again in January about the 1890s townhouse they just finished remodeling. He was also quoted in the 2004 article “The Age of Dissonance; Gay Marriage? How Straight.” So what advice did he give to the homosexual at the anti-gay-marriage dinner party? He told him to take the high road.

You may be annoyed for the rest of the evening, but the ability to differ in a civilized way speaks volumes to your character. Plus, there are so many excellent cleaning products on the market these days that spilling your boeuf bourguignon all over his sofa won’t leave permanent stains anyway.
See, we knew we liked him. —Noelle Hancock

Social Q’s [NYT]

The ‘Times’ Brings the Bitchitude (Sort of) in New Etiquette Column