My nightmare trip to buy a bed

When I tried to get a simple answer about stock, size or style, I ended up almost spitting blood

Why I pass the gentleman test

A gentleman might be unafraid to speak the truth — but lying is sometimes necessary

The one-handed Chinese takeaway

After three days of deliberations, the outcome was an ice-cream cone into which one could put sweet-and-sour pork

I’d give my arms to play Brahms

I only became an FT columnist by fluke . . . It won’t ever happen again

My favourite 10 restaurants

‘Old school’ venues are beautiful, delicious, atmospheric, calm and, most of all, relaxed. Designers should learn from them

Why London beats Singapore

The main problem with Singapore is that it is a tiny country jam-packed with goody two-shoes

How to wind down without getting wound up

Usually I just go home, fling my shoes off, get a cold fizzy drink and sit down with my dogs — and perhaps try to irritate my wife

Making a meal of going Dutch 

It’s usually those with less money who order the more expensive items in a group that splits a restaurant bill

Where disloyalty is welcome

A good pair of shoes requires constant wearing, so that they develop proper creases and a sense of maturity

Why I don’t have a wine cellar

You can’t blame the person who orders more extravagantly than others because you could have done so yourself

Hair is a grey area for China’s leaders

Fortunately, none of Beijing’s bigwigs come from Wenzhou, a city where many men perm their hair (and wear high heels)

Nudists with altitude: how to fly naked

A gentleman needs at least two suits, two shirts, and always wears highly polished shoes. And, of course, black socks

Was Donald Trump’s hair born in the US?

When motionless, it looks like a caramelised, flattened Brillo pad — but does it disqualify him from running as president?

It’s the game of the name

People go sockless in those countries that don’t want to distinguish between going to work and going on holiday

Naturist dilemma laid bare

I wouldn’t want to roll around in bubbled nakedness at 38,000ft

Strong alms tactics to deal with beggars

A cancellation can work to your advantage . . . such as inviting somebody else who might be ‘better’

Too fat for first class

I don’t ever get into the airline sleeper suits because they are not large enough for my frame

Drop the racket at Wimbledon

The yobbish shouting in between points by spectators is egotistical, inconsiderate, selfish, vulgar and thuggish

Know your placement — and other table manners

The days when the row of cutlery either side of the plate was set as an obstacle course for the uninitiated are gone

What a knight at Bognor Butlin’s

Sir David Tang, agony uncle, solves you’re dilemmas: this week, why three-star beats five-star; and the myth of the ‘hard pillow’


David TangDavid Tang, the FT's Agony Uncle, answers readers' questions about property, interiors, architecture and gardens although he often strays beyond his remit to debate concerns about everything from etiquette to grammar.

Tang is the entrepreneur who founded China Tang and iCorrect, and he has homes principally in Hong Kong, mainland China, London and Essex .

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