Welcome to the Yale Students’ “How to Eat Your Way to Success” Guide.
As you know, the only way to make it in this world is to seduce someone wealthier than you. You will not accomplish this if you eat in certain ways, such as “a lot,” “with your fingers” or “intravenously.” Food, if eaten inappropriately, can arouse great disgust in the object of your lust. No one will take you home for a bit of nookie if you insist on chewing your hindquarter of roast mutton with your mouth open as you hum the “Battle Hymn of the Republic.” No one wants to see that and more importantly, no one wants to hear that.
On the other hand, if you are in London and you fill your mouth with mayonnaise and then whisper something naughty about your target’s enormous haggis, he will probably want to ravish you right there on the bar counter even though the soccer match is on and Manchester United is behind.
Back in the old days, before they let women in, the Ivy League taught men how to seduce women with their impeccable manners, mastery of small talk and an irresistible trick involving kippers, earl grey tea and the upper ear lobe. Today, this course of instruction has vanished so that once Yalies have left school with a $140,000 debt, they have nowhere to look for future alimo … I mean, spouses, or how to incur their love.
England, of course, is the ideal place to go — specifically London. Pubs and bars overflow with nobility, who are always one beer from impregnating you with the child that will make you rich. But to get them into bed or the loo in the back, one must be able to break the little barriers of “class” and “America-hating” that are so common.
First things first. Find the boy with the shined loafers and look of wealth about him. If he is snorting cocaine, this is a good sign. Spill your gin and tonic on the ugly dude sitting next to him, and when the seat is free, take your seat and pull your supplies out of your purse. These things should include: teacup, a tea bag and a black thong. Ask the bartender to fill your cup. Then take a scone with sultanas in it out of your halter and offer the young earl a bite. I guarantee that by the time the bartender comes back with your hot water, the earl will be eating out of … well, whatever you want him to be eating out of.
For men, this is a bit less of a challenge. Around four in the afternoon, mosey on over to The Ritz for tea. Wait until someone you find appealing comes through the door, then go up to the maitre d’ and tell him very loudly that you need a table for Mr. Spielberg for dinner this evening. As you are about to leave, stop at the young lady’s table, kneel down and examine her pastries. Before she can say anything, grab one and throw it in the general direction of the nearest waiter. Shout, “Is this the best you can do? My uncle will not eat here if this is the kind of garbage you serve!” Then apologize to the young ladies for your outburst and offer to take them somewhere nicer, or at least, buy them a bottle of decent wine. They will be so impressed by your chivalry and superior taste, that at least one lady will faint. When it comes time to pay the check, you have two options. You can either tell the waiter (hopefully not the one you chucked a sweet at) to charge it to room 417, or you can make a big show of having lent Uncle Steve your credit card. Either way, you can count on scoring.
After your conquest gets to know the real you, you won’t need to know which spoon to use to ensure spooning later on. Really blue-blooded Brits are too polite to tell their loved ones that their manners are atrocious, so once you have a ring on your finger, the right embarrassing photos or a bastard child, you can revert to your former disgusting habits. Your mother was right: all it takes to succeed is a little proper etiquette … and the willingness to bang a masher or two along the way.
Katherine Stevens is already eating her way to success.