Modern manners

Snobbery in the age of social media

12 August 2017 9:00 am

We like to think we have moved on from the age of snobbery. Judging others by birth or status, or…

Let’s put down the cameraphones and start living

5 August 2017 9:00 am

It’s time to put down the cameras and start living

Why must I have a strong opinion about everything?

29 July 2017 9:00 am

At a party earlier this summer, I was chatting to a man who asked me how I voted in last…

How can I stop my children renting out their flats and coming to stay?

29 July 2017 9:00 am

Q. My children are very lucky in that we have bought them all flats. However, they are now renting out…

I survived a hen party — just

15 July 2017 9:00 am

The hen party was seated at an outside restaurant table under the plane trees when I arrived. They sat with…

Is this Britain’s bossiest village?

15 July 2017 9:00 am

‘What do you think it means?’ I asked the builder boyfriend as we stood in front of the sign. A…

Dear Mary: what’s the etiquette when security gates don’t just open?

15 July 2017 9:00 am

Q. Is there an etiquette regarding security gates? My wife and I were invited to dinner by new neighbours who…

Being anti-smoking damages your mental health

8 July 2017 9:00 am

I lit a cigarette in an open-air car park a couple of years ago as I was walking to the…

Why I can’t embrace the man-hug

8 July 2017 9:00 am

The regrettable rise of the male embrace

Dear Mary: our friend’s new wife is a horror show. How can we avoid her?

8 July 2017 9:00 am

Q. ‘Alfred’ is a friend of 30 years’ standing who has just married for the first time. Alfred retains all…

How can I get the buyer of a supermarket to notice my products?

24 June 2017 9:00 am

Q. I import a range of very high-quality food products from Europe into the UK. They are regarded as the…

This dieting nonsense is hard to swallow

17 June 2017 9:00 am

Eat good fresh food and ignore health bloggers and nutrition gurus

My husband keeps pointing out birds in our garden but I can’t see them

17 June 2017 9:00 am

Q. Having retired, my husband is now an enthusiastic observer of the goldfinches, greenfinches and bullfinches in our garden. Their…

How to make the most of the social opportunities of the polling station

3 June 2017 9:00 am

Q. I am a member of a well-known country house opera society, and I organise annual trips to performances for…

No need for excuses with party bores... it’s your duty to circulate

27 May 2017 9:00 am

Q. Re getting away from bores at drinks parties (Dear Mary, 20 May). I take issue with the idea that…

Dear Mary: how do you excuse yourself from a dull conversation?

20 May 2017 9:00 am

Q. My mother always told me that only boring people are bored. However she never got stuck at a drinks…

How do you reject someone but still spare their feelings?

22 April 2017 9:00 am

Q. May I pass on a tip to readers wishing to reject a hopeful romantic partner without hurting their feelings?…

Do you know a flake fatale?

15 April 2017 9:00 am

No shows. Repeat cancellations. And all excused by ‘flakiness’

What can be done about flakes who cancel at the last minute?

8 April 2017 9:00 am

A friend of a friend hosted an engagement party in a London hotel. Invitations had gone out six weeks beforehand,…

Dear Mary: Am I obliged to regale my sponsor with anecdotes from my life?

1 April 2017 9:00 am

Q. As an artist I’m indebted to my sponsor. I also like him, but not his habit of ringing me…

The importance of being trolled

25 March 2017 9:00 am

In social media’s strange class system, victimhood belongs to those at the top

On landing, the pilot made an announcement so psychologically astute that I wanted to offer him a job

25 March 2017 9:00 am

After landing at Gatwick, the plane taxied for five minutes or so and then came to a halt in the…

Dear Mary: How to coax a thank-you letter from your guests

25 March 2017 9:00 am

Q. We had some people up from London for a very long weekend. We put on an extra-special do, costing…

The other sexual double-standard

25 March 2017 9:00 am

Why is self-love for women so cool and feminist? For men it’s seen as sad and sleazy, points out Julie Burchill

Dear Mary: how can a dear friend be enjoined to plan his visits ahead?

18 March 2017 9:00 am

Q. Living in a large house in the country within striking distance of a motorway, we get a lot of…