Chivalry is not dead. It’s alive and well—or, at least alive.Since moving to New York, I have come across varying degrees of gallantry. Some is well intentioned and friendly; while some has a faded, slightly sour quality. Some acts of chivalry are carried out with genuine kindness, and some are done because the guy can’t bare the thought of letting a woman exert any kind of power.
How do you know what level of chivalry you’re getting on a daily basis? Read on.
LEVEL 1: On this, the brightest and friendliest level, the guy is being polite and helpful because he wants to be. Opening a door for you, standing up so you can take his seat on the subway, giving you room to pass on the sidewalk, all of these things are done with a smile and a pleasant glance. This guy’s mama taught him well, and it’s no trouble at all for him to show women that he holds them in high esteem.
Although it’s rare, this level does indeed exist, and I recommend immediately inquiring if such a polite lad has a partner, and if finding him to be single, snatching him up as quick as possible.
LEVEL 2: The majority of guys circulate around this level. If you both happen to reach the door at the same time, he’ll let you go through. He’s not watching out for you on the sidewalk, but if you both happen to play the “which-way-am-I-going? game”, he’ll be the first one to shift definitively to one side. If you’re weighed down with packages on the bus, he may or may not move for you, depending on his mood.
Just expecting a guy to open doors and throw his coat down on mud for you isn’t the best way to go through life, and dudes in this level agree with that, dispensing their chivalry on a constant basis mostly for girlfriends only. Then again, catch a Level 2 on a good day and you’ll be presently surprised by their gentlemanly deeds.
LEVEL 3: These guys are chivalrous because they feel like they have to be. They’re not happy about opening doors for you, but they’ll do it, provided you move your ass through nice and fast. Begrudgingly standing when you walk by on the train, sighing heavily when they move over on the stairs, these guys want you to know that being chivalrous is a total chore—but they’re nice so they DO IT.
Don’t even try to hold the door for a Level 3. They hold it for you, damnit! Dissing their masculinity by trying to be nice is totally NOT cool. GOD. YOU WOMEN NEVER APPRECIATE ANYTHING!
LEVEL 4: Is reserved for douchebags and chauvinists. They’re just as likely to elbow you in the face as they are to help carry your groceries. Usually, their kind of chivalry is reserved for drunk girls who would have followed them home anyway…and for seducing the boss’s wife.