do you dress left?

The British custom of driving on the left derives, according to one theory, from the courtesy of carriage drivers who wished to whip their horses without risk of striking pedestrians.


apparently more men dress to the left than the right according to one old survey of tailors though occasionally you find one someone like Rob Terrell who dresses to the middle.


(this is not Mr Terrell but he does appear to dress to the middle)

a gentleman is supposed to walk on the outside of a lady to protect her from the mud thrown up by horse’s hooves. But what to do in the case of a foursome walking down the street? the two ladies walk together first, followed by the two gentlemen who walk behind to survey them.


In medieval times street etiquette ordained that one should never greet another person who is defecating or urinating in the street. I don’t think I need a Miss Manners to persuade me of that.  These disappearing street toilets look like a good idea


Another handy little tip for street etiquette comes from Angela Lansbury

“To pass a stranger in the street you indicate you will step to the right by automatically looking where you are going. The other person looks and steps the other way. The technique for bumping into a handsome stranger is to walk one way while looking the other. It has never failed me.”


Published in: on January 14, 2009 at 7:47 am  Comments (31)  

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31 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. I think I am an aspiring dress to the middle kind of cretin. But alas it is only an aspiration as quite clearly it will decide where to hang out.

  2. Vapour! you’re back. I’ve missed you darlin’

  3. wow those disappearing toilets are a great idea… what is it about men thinking the world is their one big urinal (not all men I hasten to add);-)

  4. Do they hang a sign around their necks saying “on loo break”???

  5. Never trust Angela Lansbury – Everywhere she goes, somebody dies. Damn that Jessica Fletcher!

  6. Damn. Does this mean that we’re not actually supposed to whip pedestrians?

  7. One day I’ll get the hang of it …….. etiquette that is of course ……..

  8. I wonder if those hi-tech public toilets cause as much trouble as the ones in Seattle did?

  9. Very courteous of those madcap Brits to think of pedestrians. Me, I prefer not being whipped when I’m out for a stroll. The disappearing toilets are very swanky in a George Jetson kind of way, and I’m sure that in any town, they would reduce the unfortunate incidence of people urinating and defecating in the street.

  10. Oooh, Angela Lansbury! I always knew she was a saucy old broad. I’m going to have to do my own field research, of course.

  11. I had heard that the British custom of putting an oncommer on one’s right goes back to the days when men carried swords. You drew your weapon from your left to the right side, thusly, you could draw and strike someone on your right in a single stroke and likewise defend from such an attack.

    I’ve heard something similar regarding why men’s shirts button left over right and women’s the reverse. Though I’ve also heard that that is because noble men typically dressed themselves and women were dressed by servants so women’s blouses were made to be buttoned by someone facing the wearer.

  12. The Sword thingy is the most plausible theory I heard as well. Talking of Sword thingy’s, I tend to dress straight up. Or occasionally hanging out. Although I am on probation for that one.


  13. PS.

    Never ever Left.

    It’s so gauche

  14. That guy? The one who dresses to the middle? Is that an action figure?
    I think he’d like a little action Rassles…..

  15. But Angela – if i’m looking the other way with the head fake, how can i tell if he’s handsome? should i just run into everyone and only play grabass with the hot ones?

  16. Is there a name for the male equivalent of “camel toe”?

    Those disappearing toilets look scary! What if they disappeared while you were in them?

  17. those british are kooky!

  18. Indeed they are. don’t you just love ’em?

  19. Alas, I dress to the left. So common 😦

    Why does that final pic put me in mind of daisyfae?

  20. I have no idea Archie. why does it?

  21. I’d be worried that those disappearing street toilets might disappear while I was inside…

  22. couldn’t you just channel your inner Houdini? I know you’ve got one.

  23. But can you undress to the left or the right? That’s what I’m interested in.

  24. @archie – hey, sailor!

  25. And speaking of Archie, I think The Satire is trying to take his place. I know he would have posted all those puns, if only he’d gotten here first.

  26. What happens when the lowering toilets get stuck underground.

    Oh I dress to the right… well the lower half anyway.

  27. Good point by Alex L. What if you got stuck in on one of those toilets if it went underground.

    I have no clue what direction I dress in. I have to examine more closely.

  28. really? I thought all men knew which way they hung…

  29. Personally, I just don’t dress at all. Why bother?

  30. Hmmm. Handcuffs I might be able to manage, but an underground toilet seems like it could be a little beyond my powers…

  31. I think you’re underestimating yourself reverend 🙂

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