10 occasions when a gentleman should never get too drunk

There are some articles that shouldn’t need writing. But stories emerge; stories that testify standards as slipping by the wayside. Yes, the goal posts of what make a gentleman in the 21st century have moved somewhat, and as hard as we may endeavour, none of us are perfect. But some are less perfect than others.

The marque of being ‘drunk and disorderly’ isn’t an attractive stain on any man, but drunk and disorderly at the wrong place is a sin of different heights altogether; one that more often than not comes back to bite you in the morning – sometimes far longer. People tend to remember the guy who started a food fight during a charity black tie event, or squared up to the bride’s father because he asked a trashed reveller to slow down.

These are the 10 occasions when a gentleman should ensure he is never too drunk…

At auction

Alcohol and the temptation to spend money don’t go well. Auctions are an exciting place to be, regardless of whether you’re in the market for something new or not, but throw one too many drinks into the scenario and you’ll all too easily find yourself staring down the barrel of a mammoth receipt and a trailer-load of precious antiques you have no room for.


In church

This goes without saying, but a gentleman should never be inebriated in a place that holds such personal significance to others. Religion, for those who seek its tutelage, is to be respected. Take your slurred words elsewhere.

Man in the Shadows

Before 1pm

Because if you need a drink before this time, you may have a more serious problem on your hands.


On public transport

If we’re honest, we like to commute in silence – it’s just the British way. There are few things more offensive than a group of drunks chanting, swearing and pole-dancing on the Tube or bus. Consideration for others pales into insignificance after a bar bill has been wracked up.


At 32,000 feet

You may be going on holiday, or a ‘seasoned flier’ as I heard one passenger arguing while being carried from the departures lounge by security last week, but that’s no excuse to cause a furore at 32,000ft. And yes, the booze may be free, but that too does not mean you should act like a 16-year-old who’s just been told he has the whole house to himself for the weekend and under no circumstances is he to invite friends over for a party.

Airplane in the sky, over the cloudy sky

When you’re the friend of a friend

It’s always the case. If someone is being a Class A nuisance at an event, you can almost guarantee it’s your friend’s friend. They asked if they could come, promised they were good fun and wouldn’t cause any trouble, but they constantly do exactly that. They have no ties to the family or occasion, and therefore have free reign to act as they please – every now and then, appallingly.


On a Sunday night

It may seem like a great way to wash away the Sunday Blues, but it usually does the exact opposite. Monday will happen. That, unfortunately, is unavoidable. But making it ten-fold worse with a stinking headache is.

Two men drinking from china pint mugs, from the film Down at the Local, 1945

The races

Unless featuring on the Daily Mail is on your bucket list, the likes of Ascot and Goodwood are not the places to be caught pulling your trousers down, riding the famous monuments or doing a strawpedo every time your bet crosses the tape with its nose in front.


On a golf course

Hack a divot from the green and see how funny the Clubhouse members find it. Golf is a slow game, a quiet stroll on manicured fairways in funny trousers – the sport with no age prejudice. You’ll sooner get away with wearing tie-dye on the course than you will being drunk.


Work functions (bar the office Christmas party)

You have to see these people every single day. Throwing up over your boss’s suit, trying every chat up line you know on his PA or opting to sing a racist, expletive-filled Eminem rap on karaoke night will not be laughed about come morning. In the world of business, reputations can be easily tarnished – keep your crazy antics for your ‘non-work’ friends.

Two businesswomen with coffee speak to a handsome businessman at a conference. Horizontal shot.

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