May I walk you to your car?: Chivalry and its contradictions



Ladies, have you ever noticed this pattern? You’re preparing to exit a social setting, ready to go home. You hug all the girls, make a round of waves, and head for the door and down the street alone. All of a sudden, a guy appears, offering to insure you get home safely.

“Let me walk you to your car” … “Do you need a ride home?”


But are guys doing that because they genuinely care about our safety — wanting to walk us through the dark parking garage, or drive us home safely (even though we’re more sober than they are?) — or do they just want to create an opportunity to make a move?

When you guys see a girl walking alone, do your chivalrous instincts kick in to run over and be her knight on a white horse who will protect her from the evil villains on the city streets? Or do you see an opportunity? An opportunity to talk to her in a more private setting, without competing with the high volume of the music or her friends. An opportunity to try and kiss her or convince her to go home with you.

Is there always an ulterior motive, or is our appreciation to you for our safety reward enough? Not to discredit the nice guys, but these days I’m having trouble telling the heroes from the hornballs.