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

Filming to begin on two new series due to be aired on Dave from next year


Arts and Entertainment
Kit Harington plays MI5 agent Will Holloway in Spooks: The Greater Good

'You can't count on anyone making it out alive'film
Arts and Entertainment
War veteran and father of Peter and Laust Thoger Jensen played by Lars Mikkelson

TVBBC hopes latest Danish import will spell success

Arts and Entertainment
Carey Mulligan in Far From The Madding Crowd
FilmCarey Mulligan’s Bathsheba would fit in better in The Hunger Games
Arts and Entertainment
Pandas-on-heat: Mary Ramsden's contribution is intended to evoke the compound the beasts smear around their habitat
Iart'm Here But You've Gone exhibition has invited artists to produce perfumes
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment

ebooksNow available in paperback
Arts and Entertainment

  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating

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

    Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

    Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

    Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
    Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

    Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

    Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
    China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

    China's influence on fashion

    At the top of the game both creatively and commercially
    Lord O’Donnell: Former cabinet secretary on the election and life away from the levers of power

    The man known as GOD has a reputation for getting the job done

    Lord O'Donnell's three principles of rule
    Rainbow shades: It's all bright on the night

    Rainbow shades

    It's all bright on the night
    'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

    Bread from heaven

    Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
    Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

    How 'the Axe' helped Labour

    UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
    Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

    The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

    A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
    Welcome to the world of Megagames

    Welcome to the world of Megagames

    300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
    'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

    Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

    Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
    Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

    Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

    The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
    Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

    Vince Cable exclusive interview

    Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
    Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

    Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

    Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
    Russell Brand's interview with Ed Miliband has got everyone talking about The Trews

    Everyone is talking about The Trews

    Russell Brand's 'true news' videos attract millions of viewers. But today's 'Milibrand' interview introduced his resolutely amateurish style to a whole new crowd
    Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

    It's time for my close-up

    Meet the man who films great whites for a living