To that man and any others
In those age-old British words, I have a “polite notice” for you. Please note it is not polite to treat my sex with such contempt. Please note that, despite my fury, I managed to summon up a very thin, very British veneer of passive politeness in response. Please note, in particular, the following rules of politeness, provided here for future reference.
DO NOT, without any warning or pre-amble, pull out the mooring pin I have so carefully bashed into the ground, and then proceed to replace in almost the same spot. I’m sure your mallet is bigger than mine, indeed. But that’s really not the point.
DO NOT, again without so much as a by your leave, remove the rope I have looped around said repositioned mooring pin and thread it through the eye. I don’t like fixing my lines like that; it goes against everything Tony taught us to do. Now I’ll have the hassle of unthreading it tomorrow.
DO NOT, ever, presume that I will be grateful for little gestures such as the above because I am a woman. If you thought I subscribed to your particular view of gender roles, why do you think I was getting on with such a task in the first place? And why does your wife look so bashful? If you thought my man should be doing that for me, would it not have been more polite to wait for him to gently correct my weak and feeble efforts?
PS: Readers will be pleased to discover that my cold fury allowed me to reach far enough to clear the propeller of foulness for the first time ever. Turns out that my arms are long enough, at least they are if there is a mean-spirited, miserable little man watching and waiting for me to mess it up.