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Valuable maxim to be borne in the minds of young ladies. Do we not try to make a good impression at job interviews? Are we not deliberately more polite when first obliged to meet the parents of our partners? Why, then, is it so unlikely that, encouraged by the slightest possibility of a fleeting sexual liaison, young gentlemen might modify their behaviour?

The matter first came to my attention when a former girlfriend insisted that one of the doormen employed to guard against unwelcome guests in the bar where she was working as a student was a 'sweetheart'.

"Sweetheart? You must be joking. What sort of person wants to be called Rocky? His name is Derek. I have had to speak to him a few times and he makes no secret, even in front of total strangers, of the fact that he has been convicted of grievous bodily harm! You see all that blood in the corridor at the back? That was him - and he thinks it is funny!"

It is a man of uncommon composition who can maintain his usual character when faced with a shivering queue of nubile young girls all dressed in Spice Girls costumes. And, as surely as night follows day, while this fellow will greet you by name when you are accompanying the woman who is clearly the object of his most explicit sexual fantasies he will completely disregard you if he should happen to chance upon you alone, becoming confused and aggressive if you happen to forget yourself and wish him, 'good evening, Derek'.

These people, who can put 'kickboxing' on a curriculum vitae under 'Professional Qualifications' and keep a straight face, are able to compose a mystifying Stream of Ignorance, with which they can hypnotise young girls by blending seamlessly with their Sambuca-induced absence of consciousness, during which the undeniable evidence of their violent nature is, apparently, forgotten.

Constant vigilance, therefore, is the only suitable policy for women to adopt. Ask yourself: Is violence this man's profession? Is he even likely to buy me a drink? And if, despite your findings, you decide to go against your better judgement, don't bother reporting to me three weeks later how terribly upsetting you are finding the whole experience of knowing him.

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