Letter: Mad dogs were never as English as this

Sir: Once again the stoical English patience has been rewarded with a late heat wave, and once again I see, in unabatable disbelief, the stoical English gentleman suffering to melting point in his unyielding English uniform of jacket, collar and tie]

I know men who, instead of admitting in shame, actually boast that they maintain this idiotic habit in all weathers, while the more intelligent are sporting shorts and open-necks (and smelling far more wholesome).

Would somebody please explain the virtue in this form of self-flagellation? Noel Coward understated the case. The English male is obsessed with turning what should be an enjoyable spell of summer weather into torture by insulating in the discomfort of that punishing sun. It is unfair to our canine community to compare him with even the maddest dogs, who have little choice, but who do shed what they can.

Yours faithfully,


London, NW7

(Photograph omitted)