Wednesday, 30th September 2020

A gentleman's guide to staying cool in the heat, by Jacob Rees-Mogg

WHEN Britain ruled the world, its colonial governors wore three-piece suits with top hats and watch chains in the height of Ceylonese summer. Stay cool as they did: 

Lay a damp handkerchief over your face

Convalescing Victorians – the greatest generation – had none of our indulgent modern amenities. When temperatures soared, they were inclined to soak their monogrammed handkerchief in ice-water and lay it over their face. If they died they were poised to do so.

Put a dash more milk in your tea

A true gentleman would never be seen drinking tea of the ‘iced’ variety, nor the New World’s ‘Cocaine-Cola’. If your piping hot Earl Grey is doing nothing to cool the blood, consider adding a bit more milk or heavy cream than ordinarily. May leave you a tad sluggish for the midday croquet.

Repair to the ice-house

Your underground ice-house, the key technological advancement of the 1780s, is the ideal place to chill your maddened fluids. Have six of your staff carry you there and recline on a chaise-longue until your temperament has eased.

Wear a slightly lighter pinstripe

T-shirts and shorts are an abomination. A man’s wardrobe should vary as little as possible during the year, but if your usual coat and tails are becoming both onerous and odorous, consider slipping into a worsted suit with a slightly lighter-coloured pinstripe to reflect the sun.

Nap on your workplace benches

Over-exerting yourself by standing or sitting will cause your body to overheat. Reposing like a Roman senator will allow it to concentrate on the task at hand. And you’ll devastatingly wrong-foot your opponents in the process.