A chap is entitled to some relaxation

LOVELY WORD, "mistress", wouldn't you say? Frilly lingerie - lovely word, "frilly", wouldn't you say? - a little flat in Dolphin Square or Nell Gwynne House, marabou mules, maybe a little poodle. Scented. Always ready to be enjoyed. (Not the poodle. The mistress.) A ... well, a plaything: smiley, docile, presentable, makes a chap feel a bit of a dog as it were. After all, a chap has his troubles. A chap has rich clients, important contacts, business associates to impress. A chap has a third-class degree to live down, a set of carefully - too carefully - honed vowel-sounds to maintain, cars to think about, houses to think about, a rich but mad wife to think about. A chap is entitled to some relaxation, and of course the little flat in Dolphin Square or Nell Gwynne House is in a chap's name; everything goes to the rich but mad wife when a chap doubles over the steering wheel of his Jaguar one day, the pain surging down into the splayed pale fingers of the left hand - the wedding-ring hand, bloody irony, ha ha! - and the sweat erupts on the brow and the terrible, terrible fear strikes just long enough to stop the heart so that darkness and perpetual infamy can mercilessly supervene.

Lovely word, "mistress", because, in the face of all this, a chap needs all the diversion he can get. Not a lot of diversion, actually, because (to be frank) a chap has a bit of trouble in the old trouser department. To be frank, it's not all it should be. To be frank, it's nothing it should be, but when a chap slips away from a meeting in the Jaguar (never say "Jag" do you see, "Jag" is a bit common do you see?) on his way to the little flat in Dolphin Square or Nell Gwynne House, a chap feels good.

The one thing a chap must never do is allow himself to see his mistress as a human being. What you do with mistresses is buy them clothes. You can tell them anything you like - tell them you'll marry them, tell them it's only a matter of time, tell them you'll look after them for ever - but what you actually do is buy them clothes. Buy them clothes and throw tantrums and grope them under restaurant tables, but make sure you've got it all wrapped up, do you see?, make sure you have good legal advice. (Provincial solicitor, of course. Don't want word getting around. Reputation to think of.)

The law's on your side, of course. Equality, constrictive contracts, estoppel, blah. The law is for rich men, at least when it comes to mistresses. Of course it is. The law is by rich men, when it comes to mistresses, so no need to worry - take it from me - about buggering about a woman's life, smashing her hopes, keeping her on a money-chain. No no no: go right ahead, exercise power, do you see? Trouble in the trouser department, maybe, but none in the back pocket where the wallet lives, what? Johnny Wallet is still as virile, as tumescent and penetrating as ever it was and what one's wife - frightfully rich but mad as a bus - doesn't know about won't hurt her.

Lovely word, "mistress". Yes indeed. Do what you like, do you see? Steal her from her husband: piece of cake. Lonely woman, out in the sticks somewhere, no car, yearning for love, sitting duck. Offer her the world on a plate, London!, little flat in Dolphin Square or Nell Gwynne House, no need for her to go out, everything she wants, best if she doesn't, frankly, can't have her seeing other chaps, won't do, not part of the game. Best if a chap's not actually married, you see, but what you do, you keep the rich- but-mad one in the background by way of a stalking-horse, head the mistress off at the last fence, that's the way, and if the manure hits the air- conditioning, ha ha, here's a spot of advice: marry the rich one but don't tell the mistress. Only creates unpleasantness on all sides, and the mistress will come round in due course: a few shopping trips, a bit of old Johnny Smooth Talk, my advice is shed a tear or two if you can manage it, but nothing in writing, do you see? Nothing in writing.

Lovely word, "mistress". Bit of stuff in the papers recently about mistresses' rights, how the law's going to change, but everyone knows that a mistress's life is a different sort of thing - a lesser sort of thing, really - from a chap's life, a chap with money and vowels and cars and a rich (but barking) wife. Take my word: the law will always be on our side. Journalists would have us believe there are tens of thousands of women throughout the country being exploited, bullied, threatened, belittled by chaps, but journalists aren't one of us. Little ratweasels. It won't happen. There'll be no knock on the door, no porky burping bailiff serving writs, no humiliation, no infamy, no end to the fiction that a chap's a gentleman. Take my word on it.

Lovely word, "mistress". If you're one of us.

Arts and Entertainment
Victoria Wood, Kayvan Novak, Alexa Chung, Chris Moyles
tvReview: No soggy bottoms, but plenty of other baking disasters on The Great Comic Relief Bake Off
Arts and Entertainment
80s trailblazer: comedian Tracey Ullman
tv
Arts and Entertainment
Stephen Tompkinson is back as DCI Banks
tvReview: Episode one of the new series played it safe, but at least this drama has a winning formula
Arts and Entertainment
TV
News
Graham Norton said Irish broadcaster RTE’s decision to settle was ‘moronic’
TV
Arts and Entertainment
Attenborough with the primates
tv
Arts and Entertainment
Former Communards frontman Jimmy Somerville
music
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment

ebooksNow available in paperback
Arts and Entertainment

ebooks
Arts and Entertainment
Secrets of JK Rowling's Harry Potter workings have been revealed in a new bibliography
arts + ents
Arts and Entertainment
Fearne Cotton is leaving Radio 1 after a decade
radio The popular DJ is leaving for 'family and new adventures'
Arts and Entertainment
arts + ents
Arts and Entertainment
Public Service Broadcasting are going it alone
music
Arts and Entertainment
Eddie Redmayne as transgender artist Lili Elbe in The Danish Girl
filmFirst look at Oscar winner as transgender artist
Arts and Entertainment
Season three of 'House of Cards' will be returning later this month
TV reviewHouse of Cards returns to Netflix
Arts and Entertainment
Harrison Ford will play Rick Deckard once again for the Blade Runner sequel
film review
Arts and Entertainment
The modern Thunderbirds: L-R, Scott, Virgil, Alan, Gordon and John in front of their home, the exotic Tracy Island
TV
Arts and Entertainment
Natural beauty: Aidan Turner stars in the new series of Poldark
TV
Arts and Entertainment
Taylor Swift won Best International Solo Female (Getty)

Brits 2015
Arts and Entertainment
Shining star: Maika Monroe, with Jake Weary, in ‘It Follows’
film review
Arts and Entertainment

Brits 2015
Arts and Entertainment
Paloma Faith arrives at the Brit Awards (Getty)

Brits 2015
Arts and Entertainment
Anne Boleyn's beheading in BBC Two's Wolf Hall

TV review
Arts and Entertainment
Follow every rainbow: Julie Andrews in 'The Sound of Music'
film Elizabeth Von Trapp reveals why the musical is so timeless
Arts and Entertainment
Bytes, camera, action: Leehom Wang in ‘Blackhat’
film
Arts and Entertainment
The Libertines will headline this year's festival
music
Arts and Entertainment
Richard Dean Anderson in the original TV series, which ran for seven seasons from 1985-1992
tv
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    Homeless Veterans campaign: Donations hit record-breaking £1m target after £300,000 gift from Lloyds Bank

    Homeless Veterans campaign

    Donations hit record-breaking £1m target after huge gift from Lloyds Bank
    Flight MH370 a year on: Lost without a trace – but the search goes on

    Lost without a trace

    But, a year on, the search continues for Flight MH370
    Germany's spymasters left red-faced after thieves break into brand new secret service HQ and steal taps

    Germany's spy HQ springs a leak

    Thieves break into new €1.5bn complex... to steal taps
    International Women's Day 2015: Celebrating the whirlwind wit of Simone de Beauvoir

    Whirlwind wit of Simone de Beauvoir

    Simone de Beauvoir's seminal feminist polemic, 'The Second Sex', has been published in short-form for International Women's Day
    Mark Zuckerberg’s hiring policy might suit him – but it wouldn’t work for me

    Mark Zuckerberg’s hiring policy might suit him – but it wouldn’t work for me

    Why would I want to employ someone I’d be happy to have as my boss, asks Simon Kelner
    Confessions of a planespotter: With three Britons under arrest in the UAE, the perils have never been more apparent

    Confessions of a planespotter

    With three Britons under arrest in the UAE, the perils have never been more apparent. Sam Masters explains the appeal
    Russia's gulag museum 'makes no mention' of Stalin's atrocities

    Russia's gulag museum

    Ministry of Culture-run site 'makes no mention' of Stalin's atrocities
    The big fresh food con: Alarming truth behind the chocolate muffin that won't decay

    The big fresh food con

    Joanna Blythman reveals the alarming truth behind the chocolate muffin that won't decay
    Virginia Ironside was my landlady: What is it like to live with an agony aunt on call 24/7?

    Virginia Ironside was my landlady

    Tim Willis reveals what it's like to live with an agony aunt on call 24/7
    Paris Fashion Week 2015: The wit and wisdom of Manish Arora's exercise in high camp

    Paris Fashion Week 2015

    The wit and wisdom of Manish Arora's exercise in high camp
    8 best workout DVDs

    8 best workout DVDs

    If your 'New Year new you' regime hasn’t lasted beyond February, why not try working out from home?
    Paul Scholes column: I don't believe Jonny Evans was spitting at Papiss Cissé. It was a reflex. But what the Newcastle striker did next was horrible

    Paul Scholes column

    I don't believe Evans was spitting at Cissé. It was a reflex. But what the Newcastle striker did next was horrible
    Miguel Layun interview: From the Azteca to Vicarage Road with a million followers

    From the Azteca to Vicarage Road with a million followers

    Miguel Layun is a star in Mexico where he was criticised for leaving to join Watford. But he says he sees the bigger picture
    Frank Warren column: Amir Khan ready to meet winner of Floyd Mayweather v Manny Pacquiao

    Khan ready to meet winner of Mayweather v Pacquiao

    The Bolton fighter is unlikely to take on Kell Brook with two superstar opponents on the horizon, says Frank Warren
    War with Isis: Iraq's government fights to win back Tikrit from militants - but then what?

    Baghdad fights to win back Tikrit from Isis – but then what?

    Patrick Cockburn reports from Kirkuk on a conflict which sectarianism has made intractable