Villain A to Z: Chivalry

While the historical definition of chivalry refers to a more all-encompassing code of conduct, for our purposes we will be addressing specifically how a man should treat a woman.

The following timeless, “old fashioned” acts should be carried out by any real man, all the time. I don’t care how liberated and independent the woman may be; a man is still a man.

  • A man always opens the car door for a woman, and closes it once she is in and secure. A former girlfriend learned not to question me on this one after challenging its necessity one time in the rain. “My PopPop would beat my ass if he saw me let you open your own door” was my reply, which was understood (keep in mind, if alive he would be 81 years old, and yes, would still terrify me).
  • A man always pays for everything (or at least always offers first).
  • A man always pulls out a woman’s chair when sitting down in a public place. He waits until she is situated before seating himself.
  • A man always carries the bags when shopping, or at least the majority of them. He should always have a hand free or easily freed up if called upon to strike down a fool.
  • A man opens and holds the door for ANY woman when entering/leaving any public place. A real man does not rush ahead to do this only for hotties, he acts the same whether she’s eighteen or eighty (the hot ones won’t be impressed by your drooling over them anyway).
  • A man pays women compliments when they are warranted. The thought of doing this to strange women may seem creepy to some, but if it does, you’ve got more work to do. A truly confident man never comes off as creepy to a female.
  • A man will hold his woman’s hand in public and is not at all uncomfortable with other public displays of affection. If he’s chosen this woman as his own, he proudly demonstrates his commitment to her. The act of “escorting” or having her loop her arm in yours is not seen much these days, but is one of the baddest things you can do as a male.
  • A man protects a woman no matter the situation. He is proactive in squashing any disrespect of her regardless of the degree or situation. This past weekend while a female acquaintance danced for me with another girl at a small nightclub a young drunk guy approached and attempted to dance with the two of them. A quick “Hey” from my seat at the table attracted his attention, and a simple shake of my head was all that was required to get the message across. He approached me, shook my hand, and asked to buy me a drink, which I declined respectfully. A mature villain is not hot headed in nature, but calm, and assertive. He carries himself in a manner that speaks louder than words, and therefore has to utter few of them.

…but he still will not hesitate to put somebody on their head and “put the shoe to ‘em” as my PopPop would say should the situation warrant such a response.

This list is by no means a complete how-to, but this is a solid Cliff Notes version of how a man should treat a woman. Chime in if you like in the comments to add your own to this list.

Get with it if you’re not. The villain is chivalrous!


Johnny Pain is the man behind as well as the East Coast’s notorious Greyskull Barbell Club and several other ventures. He is the author of several books on subjects pertaining to strength and conditioning. He can be found comically entertaining questions on his Q and A forum at or can be reached for consultations, training seminars, or speaking engagements at

Also, you can follow him on Twitter: @thejohnnypain


8 Responses

  1. dart

    A man never hits a woman, ever. No matter what the situation, regardless of what a girl does, a real man never has to use his force like that.

    September 20, 2012 at 8:07 pm

  2. DBT

    This is a great list. It’s amazing how many “men” don’t follow these rules. While this might go against the grain a bit, I’ll commend the drunk guy who attempted to dance with your acquaintance. He recognized his faux paux and attempted to pay his respects appropriately. Can’t blame a guy for attempting to introduce himself to the fairer sex. Handled appropriately on both ends. Lucky for him…

    September 20, 2012 at 10:10 pm

  3. spacelord4

    Good stuff here. I was taught from a young age how to be chivalrous! Too many punks now a days think it is cool to treat women like shit! I generally show them the error of their ways! I have my wife so spoiled she has waited for her female friends to open doors for her as she is not accustomed to doing so when with me! Keep up the good stuff!

    September 21, 2012 at 10:07 am

  4. Elizabeth

    My husband shared this list with me and I am proud to say covers all the above. Awesome list!

    September 22, 2012 at 4:07 pm

  5. Kellen Love

    Amazing post JP. I must have been raised right, because I’m proud to say I do all of these things. Manners don’t go out of style, and they’re certainly not uncool!

    September 23, 2012 at 7:13 am

  6. Sardaukar

    Excellent topic while training like a man, one must have standards to behave like one as well. My Grandpa had similar standards. He suggested that I follow a code of conduct around women. One in particular was while escorting a lady the gentleman is to walk on the side of the street. This would ensure that the women’s safety was guarded against yahoos in traffic. He told me a man must be a shield to his female companion. I believe he also meant a shield to both physical and emotional harm.

    September 26, 2012 at 11:14 pm

  7. shane treichel

    Great list, I would add take your baseball hat off when seated across the table from your lady son.

    September 27, 2012 at 2:19 pm

  8. When dining:

    – a man will always ensure the lady’s glass is refilled.

    – a man will not order his meal for himself first.


    – Open the door for the lady, then go around to the other side (if safe) rather than expecting her to slide over.

    – If getting off at different stops, go via the lady’s stop first even if it means backtracking slightly.

    November 15, 2012 at 5:32 am

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