1. Watch, not only because the wrist requires an expensive timeless accessory but because a gentleman must always be on time. This is the only mandatory jewellery piece on a man, anything else is just overcompensating for some inherent weakness or simply displaying a knack for distasteful antics
2. Library, whatever certificates you have accumulated are only an indication of how good you are at preparing for an exam- and not how educated you are. A man only gains substance by owning a library of books. Fiction is useful but should not define the collection.
3. Blazer, I have never seen a man who doesn’t look good in a blazer. A Blazer is everyman’s near experience of being a highly decorated 18th century general. Because it’s an investment, bespoke is a must.
My early memory of my father’s towering dapperness was seeing him in a double breasted navy blue blazer. There was something about those six shiny gold crown buttons that every one respected; there was no reason to justify his opinions they were taken as orders!
4. Vintage car. I am young enough to feel the pressure of the rat race, and doing better than the next guy. What better way to attract young lass than the latest BMW. But the most interesting gentlemen I have ever come across own a classic car. Jaguar 1968 XJK, mustang viper 1968, Aston Martin DB
Admittedly it ages one considerably, but is that not what makes George Clooney sexy.
5. Soccer team or F1 or breed race horses. Nothing says I have arrived more than owning a soccer team, winning F1 racing cars or a couple of pure breed horses!
6. Foreign language. I can never forget a time I attended a seminar and the speaker was Japanese, and by way of introduction spoke in Japanese, he had some encrypted message to convey, he challenged the audience to guess what he had said. In the 2000 strong audience of high flyers, a Romanian gentleman stood up and spoke to the speaker in Japanese. This gentleman became the most interesting person in the room.
7. Hobby. Because everyman requires his quiet moments, alone far from the world to reflect or just to have a sigh. I remember an uncle who was so obsessive about his garden, he spent his quiet moments in the garden or propagating flowers in the garden shed. No-one was allowed to disturb him, it was just him and the flora. I now understand why, beyond leading and taking care of a family, beyond the demands of a highly successful career and other social activities a man needs to do something that he truly owns, by himself in his own cocoon without disturbances.
8. Children. There is a natural inclination for a man to bequeath even just his surname to the next generation. In every culture/society around the world this is a important ritual/tradition especially if the off-spring is male. But how many people have taken the due time and care to think about how their children will turn out.
Your kid’s well being is important, therefore investing in a capable mother for them is important, a trust fund even before their born and ensuring they receive direct tutorship in their education. A governess is important to shield them from the vagaries of mass education.
9. An adventure: We live in a society were travelling is not as encumbered as it was before. Thanks to the airline folks many of us find it easy to travel to distance lands and experience different cultures. This has become dogma, but few of us invest in an adventure of a life time. The once off, I have been saving up for this for the last 12 years, not just physically, mentally and financially. For example Phileas Fogg around the world in 80 days.
10. Tool Kit. Manly dexterity is such a marvel. You never know when you will need a screw driver or a power drill, owning a tool box is purely functional but a stitch in time saves nine. I have also spotted men with to die for all out silverware Barbecue tool kit, of course there is nothing particularly difficult with a barbecue, but some men have made this into an art.
From a vintage point I observed a jaw dropping performance as this particular dude opened his metal case of tools, the crowd cleared, he pulled his shirt sleeves up, with tools in hand it was a delicate performance- standing ovation all round.