Modern manners

The young oppress their future selves

21 October 2017 9:00 am

Matt Ridley’s fine recent Times column was hardly the first to raise the alarm about the pseudo-Soviet intolerance of the…

Dear Mary

14 October 2017 9:00 am

Q. A well-known television mogul,whom I had met only once, came to dinner at my house. I was on good…

Dear Mary

7 October 2017 9:00 am

Q. We have moved from London into a rural area where we are preparing for the first visit of a…

Dear Mary

30 September 2017 9:00 am

Q. How can I avoid becoming seen as an ‘Instagram creeper’? My well-meaning niece tells me that I’m in danger…

Dear Mary

23 September 2017 9:00 am

Q. Last year my husband and I stayed with a much-loved, but slightly airy-fairy friend in her house in Tuscany.…

Dear Mary

16 September 2017 9:00 am

Q. My partner and I recently had two close friends — one a Peer, the other a former Member of the…

Dear Mary

9 September 2017 9:00 am

Q. Some rather flashy new neighbours of ours — I won’t mention their names as his will be familiar to…

Dear Mary

26 August 2017 9:00 am

Q. I am in my seventies and my husband is in his nineties. The other night we had two couples…

Snobbery in the age of social media

12 August 2017 9:00 am

We like to think we have moved on from the age of snobbery. Judging others by birth or status, or…

Snapping point

5 August 2017 9:00 am

Our family holiday snaps used to be slides. We’d gather in the sitting room while Dad clicked through each one.…

Dear Mary

29 July 2017 9:00 am

Q. My children are very lucky in that we have bought them all flats. However, they are now renting out…

Why must I have a strong opinion about everything?

29 July 2017 9:00 am

At a party earlier this summer, I was chatting to a man who asked me how I voted in last…

Dear Mary

15 July 2017 9:00 am

Q. Is there an etiquette regarding security gates? My wife and I were invited to dinner by new neighbours who…

Low life

15 July 2017 9:00 am

The hen party was seated at an outside restaurant table under the plane trees when I arrived. They sat with…

Real life

15 July 2017 9:00 am

‘What do you think it means?’ I asked the builder boyfriend as we stood in front of the sign. A…

Being anti-smoking damages your mental health

8 July 2017 9:00 am

I lit a cigarette in an open-air car park a couple of years ago as I was walking to the…

Arms and the man

8 July 2017 9:00 am

Meeting men used to be so easy. I don’t mean that in a Grindr sort of way. I just mean…

Dear Mary

8 July 2017 9:00 am

Q. ‘Alfred’ is a friend of 30 years’ standing who has just married for the first time. Alfred retains all…

In praise of Advent

26 November 2016 9:00 am

The first Sunday of Advent is 27 November this year. For those of us who prefer Advent services to Christmas…

Permanent ink

26 November 2016 9:00 am

 Brooklyn Shall I have my sister’s skin peeled off for display after she dies? Specifically, the tattooed bits — the…

Stop lecturing fatties – it’s really not their fault

4 June 2016 9:00 am

I’ve noticed for some time now that thin people, genuinely slim ones, have a secret loathing of fatties. Kindly though…

Generation Snowflake: how we train our kids to be censorious cry-babies

4 June 2016 9:00 am

Another week, another spate of barmy campus bans and ‘safe space’ shenanigans by a new breed of hyper–sensitive censorious youth.…

The day I stopped believing in the friendship myth

4 June 2016 9:00 am

Should we be surprised that friendship isn’t always mutual? That is one of the findings of a team of researchers…

Dear Mary: What can you do when your new neighbours stiff you on a restaurant bill?

4 June 2016 9:00 am

Q. We moved recently and new neighbours invited us to join them for dinner at a nearby restaurant. I planned…

How the 'dating apocalypse' led me to vajazzle my armpits

28 May 2016 9:00 am

I am crouching with a tall paper bag over my head, with holes cut out for eyes, nose and mouth,…