Joel, that goofy look on your face right now apparently means that you have never before seen that word, Chivalry, have no idea how to pronounce it, and have no clue about what it means. It probably also means that you're a fairly normal guy for this day and age. But, I'm about to change all that.
Chivalry (pronounced "shiv-ul-ree") is the act of a man extending to a woman courteous, honorable, polite, respectful, attentive, gallant, and well-mannered behavior. A chivalrous man might even be thought of as being charming, polished, and dashing–something like your Grandpa, if I may say so myself.
The Chivalrous Man In Action
If walking down the sidewalk with a woman after it has rained, the chivalrous man will walk on the outside, along the street, so if water splashes from a passing vehicle, it will splash on him and not on her. If there is a water puddle in front of her on the sidewalk, he might remove his jacket and cover the puddle so his lady will not get her shoes wet. He will open doors for her, including the car door, and not only on the first date.
The chivalrous man will hold an umbrella for a woman and will offer his handkerchief if she gets a speck of dust or a tear in her eye. If it is chilly, he will whip off his coat to provide her with extra warmth. If it is hot, he will offer her a cool drink.
The chivalrous man will pull out a woman's chair to seat her at a restaurant. If he knows what she prefers to drink, he will order it for her. If she goes to the restroom, he will stand when she rises from her chair and will again rise when she returns. If another female approaches their table, he will stand to greet her.
The chivalrous man will give small, but meaningful, gifts to his special woman for any reason or no reason at all. He will call her during the day just to say hello. He might read to her from a book of poetry or from a book of inspirational quotations. Perhaps he will write a poem just for his lady or he will handcraft a greeting card for her. If he possesses the chops, he might sing her a song or play her a tune on a musical instrument.
The chivalrous man might even learn to say "I love you" in French ("Je Vous aime"), Italian ("Ti amo"), German ("Ich liebe dich") or Swahili ("Nakupenda").
Right now, you might be thinking that compared to the chivalrous character described above, you are a social and cultural barbarian. There may be some truth in this, but, don't sell yourself short. There are dozens of ways in which you can display the courteous, polite, respectful, attentive, gallant, charming, polished, and dashing side of you to the woman you love.
Perhaps throwing your jacket over a mud puddle for Abby to walk on may be going a little bit too far, and your wife might even think you should have your mental state examined for doing it. Many of the other ideas are well within your capabilities, however. In fact, if you think about it, you are probably already doing some of these things on a regular basis. Keep up the good work, you Chivalrous Devil, you.
And, if ever in doubt how to handle a certain situation with chivalry and aplomb, you might ask yourself, "What would Grandpa do?" Ha!
Copyright © 2018 By Peter Davidson