Leave your comments below.
Just heard your interview with AnnaMaria Tremonti of CBC Radio in Toronto.
You give me no choice.
Guess I’ll have to buy & read.
Am looking forward to it.
By LunchLadyRosie on Jan 3, 2012
Hello! I’m the condescending perfect affable ass who takes his whiteness as demarcation for a higher social station and cleverness—a great wit and station far above, say, “waiters”, who can but only smile dumbly when I rub their belly as they are obviously far too stupid to have a degree from New York University’s film school! I provide a soft welcoming grin whenever the “waiter” arrives, my eyes teary with tenderness to convey warmth and understanding. A gag I like to play; lure them into believing we can be friends. But really I touch my waiter to establish my class dominance! Some one’s got to do it! “It’s good to be the king!” my hero, Mel Brooks, likes to say. I’m so fed up with the pretension of equality, I mean who isn’t? But given it’s impolite to talk down, me and my ilk will just pat them on the head, or the butt, rub their belly, or take them gently by the elbow and steer them off to the kitchen to fetch our mutton. After all, they’re clearly too dumb to know when we (that’s the royal “we”) are being rude…
What’s this in my soup? Cream, you say? Lovely…
By Server with a smile on Jan 4, 2012
Hi from Canada! I heard you on ‘The Current’ with Anna-Maria Tremonte, and I enjoyed the whole thing. I, like Anna-Maria, could identify with you regarding the people who won’t acknowledge my presence. I have had several neighbours like this over the years where I know that I could not have done anything to offend them, but absolutely no eye contact was / is forthcoming.
However, I was telling an introverted friend about this, and they pointed out that there are people (like them) who really do not want to invite more people into their lives than they must, and one way to keep your circle small is to not even begin to acknowledge the other, because to acknowledge invites more intrusion, and it’s easiest (and least rude) to just not let anything start. On the one hand, this sounds like a completely crappy way to live for an extrovert like me, but there is no rule that says you have to like people, or that you are rude for not engaging. Some folks would live in the bush if they could somehow get paid to do so, but the reality is that the city (or even the town) is a necessary evil for employment. Let me guess that you didn’t likely see the people who shunned you saying much of anything to anyone, yes?
By Jeff Wiseman on Jan 5, 2012
What, no photos!
I couldn’t resist reading about your initiation into the Tribe of Booty-Shaking Z. I used up one of my 20 free articles, the first of the month. I was doing so well, too, hoarding them. I haven’t even looked at Bill Cunningham yet, and I have to go to the archives to look up Joan Didion’s depression over not being able to wear a certain pair of shoes, I’ve been meaning to write her a sympathy note on my blog.
I came to Zumba just last Monday, but from a somewhat recent ballroom dance education, after a bit of a brain crash that left me with left right confusion. I convinced myself I was doing it all for rehab. But really I woke up one day and felt like dancing and because I was brain-damaged at that point I had no impulse control, thank God. I recently went to Zumba because it’s a mile away and during the day when my kids are in school and I’m no longer brain damaged so I think about things like practical logistics and babysitter costs for evening dance classes and mileage and all that tedious stuff that stands in the way of humans and dance. My experience was different, because by then I could already salsa, and mambo, and merengue, and cha cha.
But this is about you!
Henry, I get from your article that you’re a bit old. There’s no photo, so I can’t tell how old. Maybe your editor is old, too.
*I* know in context what you meant by
“I pegged Miss Puckett at first sight”
but you – and your editor – need to know that PEGGING is not, ummmmmm, what it used to be. I would be ashamed of myseslf if I didn’t fill you in on this. I’m not really sure how to explain this, but do you remember the phrase ‘Bend over boyfriend?’ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pegging_(sexual_practice)
Now, I live in New Hampshire at at the Zumba class I went to all we did was shake our booties and move our hips and other body parts while we were appropriate distances away from each other. Oh, once in a while we syncopated and did a squat jump so that we were facing each other and slapped our palms up against each other – the women in my town can really bust a move!
I am not sure what happens in NYC, and my Zumba teacher has a really great behind but she kept her shorts on!
Consider yourself, well-edited. (Singing..from Oliver, I think?)
By Christine on Jan 12, 2012
Had to write to let you know how much I enjoy your articles in the NY Times. Was reading the Zumba story in this AM’s paper and realized it was sim in humor to the article about bathing suits (“Does this Swimsuit Make Me Look Fat?”) and the reporter who had his kitchen graded by the city health inspector (“Would the City Shut Down Your Kitchen?”). Le voila, all the same writer You are hysterical! thanks for making my paper read fun.
By Cathy on Jan 12, 2012
You are one funny person…just read your NY Times article on Zumba and laughed outloud several times. So much so, that I had to Google you. I have recently become a Zumba fanatic and can appreciate and relate to everything you talked about!
By Estela on Jan 12, 2012
Henry Alford: I very much enjoyed the interview with you on NPR re. your “Manners” book, and was dying to call in (but couldn’t) to point out that a source of monumental irritation to some of us is the unctious “caring” and “friendliness” some companies require their hapless employees to exude. For example, Wells Fargo’s tellers ALWAYS ask “How’s your day going?” and usually interrogate me about my activities of the day. Safeway checkers have to address customers by name. T-Mobile is the worst that I’ve encountered: they always “understand” how “important” my issue is to me and how “frustrating” it must be not to have the answer I lack, whereas all I’m after is the answer to a very simple and straightforward question that could be delivered in about ten seconds. All this patronization is, in my opinion, worse than outright rudeness. What do you think?
By Brian on Jan 17, 2012
Plan to pick up your book this weekend. What particularly irks me is when dining the wait staff inevitably asks if I am still WORKING ON IT? Well I dine for pleasure and always loose my appetite when asked.
By Andrea Crowe on Feb 8, 2012
I’m loving your book “How to Live.” It is the tonic I’ve been looking for on aging that has me laughing out loud! The interviews are a hoot. And thank you for involving your family. It is speaking volumes to me. My mom entered a “finishing school” and your brother & sisters sound so similar to my brothers & me. Trying to get our heads around this whole thing: sometimes terrifying, sometimes downright hysterical! Mostly eye-opening. Thanks for tackling this topic, Henry. Loving it to bits!
By Sue on Feb 26, 2012
Dear Mr. Alford:
I read your book, How to Live, today. I would like to offer you insight into something which should be of interest to you. You are very fragmented in your thought process and it shows up in your writing. This results in your not having an ability to succinctly summarize your ideas. According to my extensive studies, this inability to focus results in your aetheistic beliefs. You do not see the clear facts of the proof of God because you are focusing on so many things all the time. I think you might benefit from therapy to build this skill in your thinking. Poor therapists or so-called doctors would say you have ADHD, but what do they know? I hope that helps you, but if you allow an unChristian therapist to try to help you no doubt you will remain in the dark.
By Wendy Angel on Mar 11, 2012
Long time no email and speaking of which – I thoroughly enjoyed your article in the NY Times on email manners. A delight to read. I hope you are well!
By Mark on Apr 11, 2012
Dear Mr. Alford,
I very much enjoyed your book about manners (or lack thereof), and would like to share with you a Lovely Gesture that came to my attention just yesterday. I purchased some pillow covers from China on eBay, and not only did the seller go out of his way to tell me that he had packed with care (which he did) and arranged for expeditious delivery (which he must have had some kind of magic trick to do, because the package arrived well before it was expected), but… [s]he hand-wrote on the packing envelope a MESSAGE TO THE POSTAL SERVICE THANKING IT FOR ITS WORK!!! Yes, in very elegant script on the envelope, the inscription reads, “Dear Post man, thanks [for] your work!” If that isn’t a gracious gesture, I’m, um, I guess, mistaken. It really made me smile, and you can be assured that I left tremendous feedback on eBay about the transactions, plus a personal message. A little courtesy really greases the wheels, doesn’t it?
By Pamina Dexter on Apr 13, 2012
Hi Henry: Any chance of getting some editorial mention about my blog “Geezer Planet.” It’s a humorous look at life in the slow lane. http://www.seniorcitizenhumor.blogspot.com. Regards, Mike (The Head Geezer)
By Michael Principato on Apr 15, 2012
I was reading “Would it Kill You” before I went to an art exhibition this morning. There I saw a woman I worked with several years ago who has worked in development for a variety of cultural organizations around town. She told me she was currently out of work and trying to decide what she wanted to do next. I was able to keep myself from saying, “Gee, you’ve worked with almost everyone” and instead said, “That must be hard, you’ve worked with so many fascinating organizations.” She gave me a heartfelt “Thank you.” Thanks for the inspiration to slow down and think of a kinder response.
By Adair on May 25, 2012
JYooNA beats by dre eRziKbZhiQ
By ckxbxfie on Jun 20, 2012
HTogJXjuWdGWSdUKU Christian Louboutin WXoLxBWhOI
By fuswqwjin on Jul 7, 2012
I have never written an author before, but your book, How To Live, really helped me on many differnt levels. My husband died in Sept. and I go to the library and choose different books on grief, self-help, etc. Your book was among that area om the Dewey Decimal System. I laughed out loud on different sections and put it down and stared into space after reading others. It is a good read and I am sorry I did not pay for the pleasure of reading it. It did me a world of good, much more than many of the “cheesy” books on grief I’ve read. I plan to read more by you, I guess I might even pay for one, maybe Barnes & Noble’s bargain price section? You are a man any woman would be proud to have as a son. Thanks.
By Brenda on Jul 25, 2012
Dear Mr. Alford,
I waited six months for your book on manners to become available at the library. It was well worth the wait! I don`t think I`ve laughed out loud, or nodded my head in agreement in a very long time.
I first read about your book in an interview you did with Macleans magazine, which was published in late January. I now share that article with my students (I teach ESL to government workers), and the discussions that have been generated are fantastic!
I do think your book should become required reading in every home, workplace, and mode of public transit.
Thanks so much.
By Caroline B on Jul 26, 2012
Thank you so much for writing your highly engaging “Would it Kill You…”
I am a high school librarian and plan on reading a chapter of your book at the start of each of our library club meetings this school year. The students will surely benefit from both the excellent content as well as your unique and highly enjoyable writing style. I want to thank you personally for such a delightful book; I am enjoying it immensely.
By Jill Sonnenberg on Aug 26, 2012
Am I glad you are back! I checked your site every day forever and then there you were. Don’t stay away so long next time!
By lawheezer on Mar 22, 2013
If you do give your next dinner party naked (as threatened in “How I Became a Hipster”), please invite me. Oh. And my boyfriend, too. I guess. Mark
By Mark on May 3, 2013
Dear Henry Alford, did you mean to imply in your article,”Avoiding Jokers’Remorse”that homosexuals drink from the”proverbial well of loneliness” or are you not the gentleman to which Oscar Wilde referred? Also, correct your subject to read We not “Us joke-makers…” Good article. Sincerely, Sissel Hawkes
By Sissel Hawkes on Jun 2, 2013
The fun! We’d have to hit the weather just right, at the midpoint on the humidity/cold air continuum.
Thanks, Mark. Apologies for the pace at which I answer my e-mails! Henry
By Henry Alford on Aug 19, 2013
Heard you read at PT Shorts tonight. Will be raffling off my goat next week in order to buy one of your books.
By Clint on Feb 8, 2015
By 『激安人気』【最大800円OFFクーポン配布】【8月初旬の出荷予定】敷き布団 on Nov 14, 2015
By alain mikli アランミクリ メガネSTARCK EYES （スタルクアイズ) SH9901Y カラー0003（正規品）カー on Dec 6, 2015
By シュレッドマスタープロ66C 【Large Office （ 推奨使用人数 ： ６～１０人以上 ）】 G on Dec 6, 2015
このポスト読書に向かうために 我々は現実を観察することが可能な光が得られます。との綿密データを与える| 1 1 | 素敵な良い 非常に | これはされているこれは本当にあります。この良い素敵をありがとう記事。こんにちは
By 腕時計 レディース セイコー SEIKO セイコー5 SEIKO 5 自動巻き 腕時計 SYMK43J1 クリスマス on Dec 7, 2015
By サングラス カザール（CAZAL）超貴重な廃盤モデル910モデル529カラー【3GLASS e-sop】 on Dec 7, 2015
You only need to have to have the engine running when you drive and if
you happen to be going to drive, you can wait till you get behind the wheel to commence it
By 500px.com on Dec 8, 2015
By ボディサポーター エアーパッド 吸水 速乾 ドライ さらさら 敷きパッド セ on Dec 8, 2015
By 【最安値に挑戦!】 ダイキン SZRB45BV1.8馬力相当 天井埋込カセット形ビルトイン on Dec 8, 2015
By iPhone5 ケース 花 iphone4s ケース ax galaxy s3 s3α ギャラクシーs3 カバー ギャラクシーs3α iphone デコ on Dec 8, 2015
Comme mon pére disait toujours! la méthode renforce les effets systématiques de la problématique
By Travail a domicile on Feb 21, 2016
You are so cool! I do not think I’ve truly read something like this before.
So wonderful to find another person with original thoughts on this subject matter.
Really.. thank you for starting this up. This site is one
thing that’s needed on the internet, someone with a little originality!
By m88 on May 28, 2016
hello there and thank you for your information – I’ve certainly picked up something new from right here.
I did however expertise several technical issues using this site, as I experienced to reload the site lots of times previous to
I could get it to load correctly. I had been wondering if your web host is OK?
Not that I am complaining, but slow loading instances
times will sometimes affect your placement in google and can damage
your high quality score if ads and marketing with Adwords.
Anyway I am adding this RSS to my email and can look out for
a lot more of your respective intriguing content.
Make sure you update this again very soon.
By busana murah on Jun 4, 2016
It’s not your job to make others happy, not your husband, kids, parents, boss,
or anyone else. Bottle Drying rack: You want something with A LOT of space.
Does walking to the fridge, if I do it many times a day, count as
exercise. While viewers could claim that the use of the word was a joke, there is probably more to this issue
than meets the eye. There are also two achievements earned
by completing the various race challenges you’ll find scattered
around the island.
By fuck on Jun 4, 2016
Newsgroup Plancha gaz émaillée : Participez au forum d’entraide de SIMOGAS Plancha gaz émaillée.
By jmbpropertymgmt.com on Jun 4, 2016
Thanks in support of sharing such a good opinion, piece of writing
is pleasant, thats why i have read it completely
By cave cao cap on Jun 5, 2016
I was suggested this blog through my cousin. I am not sure whether this
submit is written through him as nobody else realize such particular approximately my difficulty.
You are wonderful! Thank you!
By khach san co to on Jun 8, 2016
In the NYT today, you submit this sentence….”….so apparently Amy will join Greg and I at the beach…” Does this not not ring improperly in your ear?
All is lost.
By Darsie Riccio on Jun 26, 2016
E-mail (will not be published)