Sunday, July 17, 2011

UK Gentleman make ‘combat’ at Chap Olympiad

Wearing their luxury tweeds, caressing their sideburns and filling the air with pipe smoke, contestants and viewers grouped for The Chap Olympiad, a yearly festivity of the classic English gentleman.
Several of "chaps" and "chapettes" slide down on a leafy square in central London on Saturday for the sporting social event, where permanent pastimes are unseen in favor of smoking pipes, ordering butlers about and swilling cocktails.
The occasion is the yearly summer smash of The Chap, a bi-monthly magazine celebrating the English gent, his strangeness, polite manners, flawless dress and dedication to facial hair. In its 12th year, it now has 10,000 readers.
"It's a sports day for people who don't like sport," said controller Gustav Temple, The Chap's editor.
"It's unjust that chaps who used up nearly all of their time filling their pipes, pressing their trousers and mixing dry Martinis don't obtain an opportunity to fight," he told AFP.
The 10 occasions include the pipeathlon --strolling, bicycling and being carried by workers while smoking a pipe – butler attracting, ironing board surfing and moustache wrestling.
In the passing out competition, chaps "have to induce the ladies to faint through any means possible".
The fun concludes with noising at foreigners in a challenge to purchase an item, and umbrella jousting, where two rivals, armed only with their brollies and briefcases, charge at one another on bicycles.
"The things that people love about Britain are the things that we accept," said Temple.
"To be a chap is to take the gestures of an old-fashioned English gentleman, and take the small piece that we like -- being eccentric, drinking cocktails before lunch, dressing delicately and being well-mannered to ladies.
"The remaining, such as blood-sports and spanking man servants, we place that aside."
Enjoying the hospitality in London's Bedford Square, chaps, cads and bounders lugged battered suitcases around, took tea and scones, doffed hats, wiped monocles, wound up gramophones, popped champagne corks and filled the air with clouds of sweet-smelling smoke.
In the mean time chapettes were appeared the way by the Vintage Mafia, a cluster of females who were by their own entrance "remarkably well-dressed, but not for ever well-mannered."
The rare pouring downpours did not wet the spirits of those armed with a hard upper lip.
Temple, 46, reckons Britain began losing its way with rock and roll, when youth culture, passionate with being fashionable, alienated from the rest of humanity.
However, be considers all is not lost. Anybody can become a chap, beginning with a clothing renovate, shedding all clothes made from denim or plastic.
"Just the one time you have obtained the clothes, your gestures will change. You are not probably to get into a pub fight or end up at a football match," Temple said.
"You will discover yourself drawn away from lager and crisps towards dry Martinis and a pipe.
"With a pipe, you undergo like you should be placing the world to rights, speaking in clipped 1940s tones and peaking at things of significance.
"Any man holding a pipe -- you experience like a chap."


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