Social Experiments

The things I like most about this chart are that it is ridiculously simplistic, a .gif and made in Microsoft Paint.

A modern gentleman has conducted economic research, using himself as a test subject. He has come to two conclusions:

  • After living in a cooperative with seven other graduate students, a modern gentleman learned that communism only works if everyone in the microcosm is communist. If even one person does not espouse the ideology of “share and share alike,” all of the spoons will end up locked away.
  • For the last year, a modern gentleman has toyed with platonic prostitution, extrapolating a theory he had as a restaurant critic for the Palm Beach Post (“Only fools pay for their own food”). Basically, he thought of his life in terms of billable hours, taking on any task that introduced revenue or finding a way to make money at unavoidable tasks and minimizing activities for which he did not benefit financially — directly or otherwise. He also endeavored to eliminate those that actually cost him money. A modern gentleman has learned that this is no way to live in the long term, but there are definite short-term advantages.

Modern Gentleman …

… have favorite movie musicals.

Directed by Frank Oz (Sesame StreetThe Muppet Christmas Carol and The Empire Strikes Back) and starring Rick Moranis (Honey, I Shrunk the KidsLittle Giants and Ghostbusters II), “Little Shop of Horrors” is mine:

Partners in Crime

Before Robert Wagner and Stefanie Powers starred in “Hart to Hart” or William Powell and Myrna Loy played Nick and Nora Charles, Agatha Christie created the characters Tommy and Tuppence Beresford.

Thomas and Prudence  — as they are known in polite company — are the seminal fast-talking husband and wife who solve crimes because they love slumming, chasing leads and being right, not because they need the work nor believe in “justice.”

Skeletons of Tyrannosaurus bataar

Every day, a modern gentleman peruses the New York Times, mostly for the crossword and business section. Not often does he read more than the headline and first few paragraphs of an article, and the instance is rare when he reads an entire story. Stories in which he is engrossed typically feature scientific discovery, specifically paleontology, and high-stakes heists.

This story involved both:

An international legal dispute over a dinosaur skeleton sprouted last month from an innocent stack of mail at the American Museum of Natural History.

What I want is a remake of “The Thomas Crown Affair,” only this time with dinosaur bones and starring the cast of “Jurassic Park.”


Tim Allen probably could have sold you and me quaaludes and other drugs in the ’70s, especially if we lived in western Michigan.

Although a modern gentleman begrudges Tim Allen the “comedy” and success of Home Improvement, The Santa Clause and Last Man Standing, he will acknowledge that Tim Allen takes a great mugshot, looking calm, mustachioed and Instagram‘d in the face of drug trafficking charges.

A modern gentleman hopes that when he is arrested, at least his mugshot will be something he can be proud of.


Although Ellen Barkin did not invent the erotic thriller, she certainly perfected it. Only she could make naps sexy.

A modern gentleman has incorporated an early afternoon nap into his daily routine. Although taking a siesta will be harder to justify once work begins again this fall, he now cannot imagine life without a daily repose, a period of inactivity that rejuvenates and renders coffee a luxury rather than a necessity.

Modern Gentlemen …

… resented a recent publicly shaming, until they realized their friends had points and appreciated the honest assessments of their behavior.