There was an article in yesterday’s Telegraph—an advice column, I think—that, quite simply, erases the entire section of the space-time continuum between the Regency and the twenty-first century. It’s easy: snip-snip, stick-stick, and here we are! The link has disappeared, but some inquiring British mind wanted to know:
How can I stop village gossips from talking about me?
First of all, you have village gossips? That’s so cool! Man, between Cadbury chocolate and this, England’s kicking our butts, awesome-wise.
Also, based on her experiences with people doing ridiculous things—or not—and then getting talked about, I think Jane might have some suggestions for you:
- If he seems cute and nice, run away. And we don’t mean with him—clearly he’s run off with some fifteen-year-old’s honor, lied about wanting to be a priest (avoid that lightning bolt), is drowning in gambling debts, and is also hitting on your sister.
- If you’re male, be poor. If you can’t be poor, don’t talk about your salary. For, you know, whatever it is you do all day.
- If you have sisters, try to be the least awful one. Do you really ever hear anybody talking about poor Kitty?
- Don’t marry a creep just for the sake of marrying, Charlotte.
- Don’t horn in on a rich old lady’s plans for her studly and equally rich nephew. News does tend to travel.
If these seem unmanageable, well, maybe you deserve a bit of chatter. Or you can just take the opposite tack: do what you want, see what happens, and get somebody to write a timeless novel about you.
That’s gotta shut ‘em up.Charlotte Lucas, Daily Telegraph, Jane Austen, Kitty Bennet, Lydia Bennet, Mr. Wickham, Pride and Prejudice on Wednesday, July 28, 2010 · 4 Comments »